A few weeks ago, I wrote a story about an emerging tragedy -- the demise of career opportunities for our best and brightest young people -- those who graduated after 2007 (and counting).
The story -- Economic Tragedy: A Generation of Lost Careers? details all the once thriving job markets that have vanished in "the land of Hope and Change," and lamented the fact that once a young graduate strikes out at the career associated with their college degree, their income prospects (and taxpaying potential) decline precipitously.
I can hear all the liberals chanting "it's Bush's fault, it's Bush's fault," but no matter how much blame he bears (or not), every day that passes increases Obama's responsibility for the current American "Great Recession."
Shortly after I wrote my story, the highly respected election analyst Michael Barone wrote and excellent piece called Obama Tunes Out, and Business Goes on Hiring Strike where he makes a very strong case that private sector businesses in America have gone on a "hiring strike" to protest Obama's contempt for what they represent:
Poor public policy is surely one reason why the American economy has not rebounded from recession as it has in the past. And political posturing has also played a major role.
Barack Obama and the Democratic congressional supermajorities of 2009-10 raised federal spending from 21 percent to 25 percent of gross domestic product. Their stimulus package stopped layoffs of public employees for a while, even as private sector payrolls plummeted.
And the Obama Democrats piled further burdens on would-be employers in the private sector. Obamacare and the Dodd-Frank financial regulation bill are scheduled to be followed by thousands of regulations that will impose impossible-to-estimate costs on the economy.
That seems to have led to a hiring freeze. The Obama Democrats can reasonably claim not to be responsible for the huge number of layoffs that occurred in the months following the financial crisis of fall 2008. And Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke did manage to help stabilize financial markets.
But while the number of layoffs is now vastly less than in the first half of 2009, the number of new hires has not increased appreciably. Many more people have been unemployed for longer periods than in previous recessions, and many more have stopped looking for work altogether.
It's hard to avoid the conclusion that the threat of tax increases and increased regulatory burdens have produced something in the nature of a hiring strike.
I that the term Barone coined -- "hiring strike,"is exactly what's going on. Witness last week when first time jobless claims spiked (again) to 429,000 and first time home sales dropped by 2.1% from what was already an anemic number in 2010. Under normal circumstances, this would be declared a new recession, but the liberal media will simply spin this into further proof that Obama has a very difficult challenge!
Well, I am here to tell you that this is patently false. The private sector economy did attempt a recovery following the historically conservative elections in November, but that has come to a screeching halt as a direct results of 8 specific anti-business actions taken my Barack Obama that have extended the private sector hiring strike:
1. Obama's Illegal Ban on Offshore Oil Exploration: First of all, I say the ban was illegal for two reasons. First, the initial ban was based on a report in which the Obama administration lied about the recommendations made by scientists. Second, it was and is illegal because a US Court said it was. There are many estimates of the number of jobs lost by Obama's illegal acts, but the 12,000 figure comes from Dr. Joseph Mason of Louisiana State University's report -- The Economic Cost of a Moratorium on Offshore Oil and Gas Exploration to the Gulf Region.
2. Obama's EPA Ban on West Virginia Coal Mining: In January of this year Obama attempted a back-door execution of his failed Global Warming tax scheme known as "Cap and Trade" when he had his Environmental Protection Administration rescind a perfectly valid mining permit for Arch Coal’s Spruce No.1 mine, effectively shutting down this lawful private sector enterprise in the name of fighting the urban myth known as global warming (see Obama EPA Whackjobs Kill West Virginia Economy).
This act was so anti-American business that even lefty John Rockafeller sent Obama a letter stating:
"I am writing to express my outrage with the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) decision to veto a rigorously reviewed and lawfully issued permit at the Spruce Number 1 Mine in Logan County, West Virginia. This action not only affects this specific permit, but needlessly throws other permits into a sea of uncertainty at a time of great economic distress."
3. Obama Endorses Offshore Windmill Manufacturer: Although it's hard to point to a specific number of jobs that were lost when Obama chose a Spanish "green company" to visit and endorse over it's American competitors, but as a former employee of a multinational corporation, I can tell you that all of this company's engineering, marketing, finance, accounting, and management were not US jobs (see:"Obama's Visit to Spanish Wind Company Irks Some American Businesses") In fact, an Howard Makler, president of a California-base competitor to the foreign company Obama buddied up with said the following:
"There are plenty of businesses that he could visit that are owned by Americans, we are owned in America, we do our business in America. I think that focusing on businesses that are owned in American certainly would go a long way toward demonstrating the president's sensitivity to the needs of American businesses."
Of course since Obama has no clue about how a real private sector company operates, he never considered this.
4. Obama Begs Brazil to Take Oil Industry Jobs Away From America: The president, on the first leg of his trip to Latin America, said in Brazil that his administration wants to assist the Brazilian government "with technology and support" in developing its oil reserves -- a black gold mine he said could hold twice as much oil as U.S. deposits. And then Obama said - "And when you're ready to start selling, we want to be one of your best customers" (source: "Lawmakers, Executives Slam Obama for Boosting Brazil's Offshore Drilling").
5. Obama's Falsifies Charges in Attack on the Chamber of Commerce: During the 2010 congressional elections, Obama began attacking the greatest private sector employer association in America -- The US Chamber of Commerce.
From the Washington Post:
"The White House intensified its attacks Sunday on the powerful U.S. Chamber of Commerce for its alleged ties to foreign donors, part of an escalating Democratic effort to link Republican allies with corporate and overseas interests."
This may have been the most outrageous anti-private sector act Obama has made as president. Look at the facts, this 100 year old organization has been about as nonpartisan as anyone. They don't endorse candidates, they simply try to help small businesses thrive and create jobs.
Even more outrageous was the fact that Obama's charge that somehow the Chamber was involved in a illegal foreign money laundering scheme turned out to be a complete fabrication, nothing more than dirty politics from a dirty politician.
6. Obama Sues Boeing: A few years ago, the workers at the Boeing plant in South Carolina voted to decertify their union in an effort to entice Boeing to send work their way. A few week's ago, in an obvious payback to big labor, Obama sued Boeing to block their decision to move some 787 manufacturing to SC (see Obama Sues Boeing).
Not only has Obama thumbed his nose at the workers in SC who are trying to bring jobs to their state, but he is also interfering with the kind of business decision private sector companies make every day.
I'm not sure how this ends, but if Boeing is blocked from using the plant they own in SC, I wouldn't be surprised to see them move the operation to Canada, where the corporate tax rate is only 16.5% (compared to the US rate of 35%).
7. Obama Pulls Shell's Oil Exploration Permits: In the midst of skyrocketing gasoline prices, Obama poked energy giant Shell in the eye by revoking their drilling permits in Alaska:
"Shell Oil Company has announced it must scrap efforts to drill for oil this summer in the Arctic Ocean off the northern coast of Alaska. The decision comes following a ruling by the EPA’s Environmental Appeals Board to withhold critical air permits. The move has angered some in Congress and triggered a flurry of legislation aimed at stripping the EPA of its oil drilling oversight."
This absolutely kills jobs in America, but at least Obama can turn to Brazil to make up for the US Oil production he closed down in Alaska.
8. Encouraged High Gas Prices: Candidate Obama actually forecast that his policies would raise the cost of energy. And he has; here is a list of specific actions Obama has taken to drive up the cost of energy in America:
I think everyone understands that higher energy costs have the same effect as higher taxes when it comes to creating or killing jobs. Everyone except for Obama it would seem.
As even the liberal media have begun asking "is Obama doing enough to create jobs in America," the truth is that we'd be well out of this recession had he simply done nothing at all.
These 8 acts of private sector economic homicide have killed millions of jobs and the careers of the Americans they effected. The next time you hear Obama talk about "jobs" remember the old adage -- "judge me by my actions, not my words." Obama's actions have killed jobs.
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