Some thoughts on Obama and the oil spill

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by robotmonkey, Jun 23, 2010.

  1. robotmonkey macrumors 6502

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    #1
    Recently, I have been hearing many critical comments about Obama and his leisurely activities. I constantly hear my my friends on the right claim the he shouldn't be golfing when he should be fixing the oil spill. Don't get me wrong, as a right-wing libertarian I couldn't be more opposed to Obama, but c'mon the critique is bordering on insanity. What is Obama supposed to do, drop his golf clubs, grab some scuba gear, and falcon punch the hole until it closes? The fact is, there is no magical Republican, Democratic, or Obama solution to such a disastrous spill. This is exactly like how the left was critiquing Bush's response to Katrina (something I also find very ridiculous and opportunistic). Actually, I lied, this is WORSE than when the left was critiquing Bush because the actual disaster part is still going on. A lot of people, ironically mostly on the right, want Obama to "do more". I want this thread to be less of a debate than a discussion so I am probably going to regret saying this, but I think he is doing to much. He is allowing Federal roadblocks to the cleanup to exist, he hasn't lifted the liability cap on big oil (though I heard he is considering it, bravo Mr. Obama), and that whole 20 billion dollar thing is nothing more than good PR for the white house. It certainly isn't a "shakedown" as a certain Republican congressman said, it was most likely big oil and big government striking a deal that will benefit both. Obama, I want you to do LESS (in a sense). You NEED to lift the liability cap. I think that it is a valid argument to suggest that the liability cap is to blame for this disaster; a corporation that knows it has a cap on it's liability is likely to not care as much as a corporation that knows it must pay for any and all damages caused by its products. If the liability cap is raised and the power to sue BP is given back to courts at all levels, the money spent by any state or the federal government on the clean up will be more likely to be paid back in full.

    Let the bashing of me begin :rolleyes:
     
  2. bobber205 macrumors 68020

    bobber205

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  3. KingYaba macrumors 68040

    KingYaba

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    #3
    President Obama could have used this opportunity to push a civilian works program. Think of it like a tribute to the Civilian Conservation Corps and those New Deal programs. The mirroring between Obama and Roosevelt would have been something fun to look at. Both fighting war on two fronts, both inherited a bad economy, and both used/using the government to employ and tackle obstacles. Aaaaaaanyway, he could have inspired his own party to push the works program through because I know that would be popular among fellow Democrats; after all they do control Congress. I guess it's not too late. Send in the unemployed and send BP the bill when it's all said and done. :)
     
  4. Rt&Dzine macrumors 6502a

    Rt&Dzine

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    #4
    That's a similar idea to what my friends and I were discussing a few weeks ago. It would have been a good move.
     
  5. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #5
    Yesterday the Russians promised Arnie that they would give California $800,000 to support Fort Ross, the only historical Russian settlement in the state.

    I thought that was incredibly sad, sort of like Chavez giving "Red" Ken Livingstone in London tankers of heating oil for the poor.

    Obama missed a huge chance to create a Civilian Conservation Corps. Our national and state parks are in desperate need of maintenance.

    What's next? A BP sign carved onto the face of Yosemite's Half Dome?
     
  6. Jaro65 macrumors 68040

    Jaro65

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    #6
    As is our federal budget, unfortunately.
     
  7. Iscariot macrumors 68030

    Iscariot

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    #7
    The spill has been an incredible missed opportunity to action on the values of change and accountability that were put forth on Obama's election platform. Jon Stewart's criticism of Obama hit home with unerring accuracy, and I find not only the mismanagement of the spill to be troubling, but so too the lack of political will to make anything other than empty gestures.
     
  8. robotmonkey thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Just give them back into state hands, the constitutional position, and problem solved.

    What is he supposed to do? Other than my suggestion, which is getting rid of liability caps, stopping the love-fest between big government and big oil, making the way bp pays legal and sound, and ultimately make all oil companies completely responsible so the free-market can accurately prevent things like this. It seems very obvious to me that regulations do not work (just because somebody can't legally do something doesn't mean they won't), and with regulations comes a lack of liability.

    And both horrible presidents :rolleyes:

    Why an over-regulated and inefficient "works program" that either raises taxes, creates unpaid liabilities, or both? Why not just let people work?

    And the only bills sent to BP by the federal government should be because it is money sent by the federal government. Everything else should be taken care of in a case-by-case basis in courts.
     
  9. mcrain macrumors 68000

    mcrain

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    #9
    People want to work, but there are forces out there who want to ship all the jobs to places where people will work for pennies a day. Those forces are not patriotic, they are in fact, anti-American, and anyone who supports those ideas as a free-market capitalist is treasonous.
     
  10. robotmonkey thread starter macrumors 6502

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    So the reason stores and businesses are literally unable to hire is because of the free-market? Economics 101: high taxes on businesses+inflation+high minimum wages+regulations=No Jobs. Notice how all of those are created by big-government. The reason why jobs are shipped off to other countries is because the Republicans and the Democrats have created such a toxic environment for business. I agree, it is "anti-American" to hinder the free-market to a point where corporations need to exploit the rest of the world. May I ask how the thing that created this situation, an over-reaching government, is going to fix it? Forgive me if I am wrong, but it sounds like you are saying someone who supports the ideas of a free-market and capitalism (not remotely what the American system has turned into) are treasonous. What? Even though the framers of the constitution were heavily influenced by Mr. John Locke, the grand-daddy of the free-market, all Americans that support the free-market are treasonous? I think you meant to say "those who support the ideas of off-shoring". And even if I did want businesses to have little Chinese children make everything (as a free-market capitalist I am fundamentally opposed to what created this situation), it would be kind of a stretch to call me "treasonous".
     
  11. Gelfin macrumors 68020

    Gelfin

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    #11
    So the way to prevent foreign children from being exploited for pennies a day is to be found in enabling American children to be exploited for pennies a day.
     
  12. Desertrat macrumors newbie

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    #12
    Obama has the authority to let foreign-flag ships with cleanup equipment come into our waters, but he apparently is adamant in refusal.

    IMO, his biggest failure in all this is in removing federal impediments to remedial efforts, such as Jindal's efforts to get started on the berm-dredging. Another impediment seems to be that of uber-officiousness at time on the part of federal agency people, over-riding local knowledge and experitise. "He didn't get the word out!" to focus on goals, not process.

    IOW, a lack of leadership ability...
     
  13. robotmonkey thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #13
    Let's not jump to such hasty conclusions. I never said anything about age limits. If there was no income tax and the dollar could keep its value (i.e. hard money), a lower minimum wage could actually yield more purchasing power than people currently on minimum wage (half of which are still living with their family and under the age of 25, and the average income level for homes of workers that receive minimum wage is about 45,000). I think we all can agree a low paying job is better than no job. If businesses and corporations didn't have an income tax or the various other taxes and regulations, they could hire many more people regardless of wage.

    However, my simple point was that government created "jobs" and stimulus and worker bills and programs have not helped the problem, so why continue it?

    Well, this IS his first time leading anything after all :rolleyes:
     
  14. Gelfin macrumors 68020

    Gelfin

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    #14
    Depends very heavily on how low. Would you work for what overseas sweatshop laborers accept? I wouldn't.

    Age limits and laws against exploitative labor practices are regulations. Unfortunately, you cannot go halfway with this approach owing to a labor-market version of Gresham's Law. If any participant in the market sells his labor (voluntarily or compulsorily) for far less than the value of what he produces, then such "bad laborers" will drive out "good laborers" under conditions that do not discriminate among their output. If you do not put your children to work, someone else will, and they'll undercut you and steal your business. Thus a free, unregulated market must always gravitate towards the worst possible conditions.

    There are only two approaches to resolve this problem:

    One is to bite the bullet and acknowledge that any moral qualm of any sort is anathema to free market capitalism, and that if it turns out that running babies and puppies through a wood chipper turns out a particularly economical garden mulch, then the market requires you to do exactly that.

    The other is to bite the bullet and acknowledge that the economy exists in the service of society, not the other way around, and that our moral stances are in themselves valuable to us. If you are not willing to subject American children to brutal sweatshop conditions, then you are ethically bound to support practices that do not subject anyone else's children to those conditions either. In the aggregate such an attitude might indeed mean somewhat more expensive goods, somewhat tempered corporate profits and somewhat less dynamic stock movement. At some point you have to ask yourself, so what? And that point is the point where the marginal profit/savings is purchased in someone else's blood, under conditions you would reject for yourself or your own family.
     
  15. KingYaba macrumors 68040

    KingYaba

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    #15
    It's just a temporary work thing and the point is to actually do something--like letting people work--instead of talking and bitching at one another like Washington and the news media have done over the last sixty days. Quit the blame game and clean up the Gulf. We can play politics after the fact. :rolleyes: Besides, why would it be inefficient?
     
  16. fivepoint macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #16
    Well, consider me the next right-wing libertarian that finds much of the criticisms to be worthless drivel... however, I should point out that many right wing libertarians agree with us... including George Will: http://mediamatters.org/mmtv/201005300008



    Exactly. Stupid.




    The cap never should have been in place to begin with. It was used as leverage by the Federal government to get corporations who generally avoid this type of risk, to go ahead and drill thousands of feet under the water, making this type of damage almost impossible to fix, when left soely up to the free market system without gov't manipulation they would have far preferred (as would have Lousiana) to drill in the shallows and on land!




    With all that being said, the administration should be doing a better job of letting the Louisiana Govenor do his job, build berms, etc. to protect his state. Obama can help by getting the heck out of the way. Also, he can stop using this 'crisis' as an 'opportunity' to slam through his fascist eco-legislation which will make the price of energy 'necessarily skyrocket!' Not to mention allowing foreign vessels to help out! That's perhaps the biggest thing opponents could point to as an indication of his ineptness.
     

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