Climate Agreement Victory lap: Is Quiet Patient Obama Quite Brilliant?
Obama keeps defying the anchor of stupidity, bigotry and corruption that would have sunk any normal person. He has just done the seemingly impossible. His latest achievement was to bypass the whole of the corrupt American political system – a congress bought and paid for by special interests, masters at tapping into and inflaming their obscenely ignorant base. Regarding the crude $140,000,000 of energetic corruption in 2014 alone, to oil the palms of gluttonous rigged stupidparty politicians in order for them to lie to their infantile gullible gas guzzling base – I provide the explanation here.
Humanity made its first attempt to avoid a self-created planetary meltdown in 1992 in Rio, then this was built upon by the Kyoto protocol in 1997. But the US was predetermined to wash its hands of this treaty with a symbolic ninety five to zero Senate vote in 1997, before the protocol was finalized. Why? Because the US, as a whole, was simply not prepared to confront its worst daemons, its guilt. Without US acknowledgement, everyone else is doomed –because if the US refuses to help, how the hell can anyone lecture the Chinese, the Indians etc. Yes Europe can try – but they, with their logical gas taxes, disdain for pollution, tumble dryers, incandescent light bulbs, and general abhorrence for wasteful consumer behavior—they were never the real threat, and could not solve the problem whilst the worlds biggest polluters were sticking their heads in the sand. Obama attended the failed 2009 Copenhagen as an ostracized American loser –representing a Country that had not simply lost its reputation, but a Country whose troglodyte views on Climate made it an international laughing stock. At the time- as a result of the Bush policies 2000-2008 the US had lost its self-respect in the world, and was trusted about as much as Putin’s Russia, scraping above Russia by 34% compared to 30%
This chart shows how Obama has rather notably made America the most the most trusted nation again. Quite Brilliant.
Now here is the thing about climate change –you do not get to have opinion on the issue, unless you are a climatologist. There is at least one religion, the Christian Scientists, that do not believe in medicine. So, theoretically, if they had a child dying of a treatable disease they would let their child die. Now fortunately that is a criminal act, and they would go to jail for killing their child. Having an equally delusional opinion about climate change, which is an existential threat to many of the species living on this planet, should be a similar crime. This is especially true for those in positions of leadership, who allow such a Faustian bargain to empower themselves in return for being the Pied Pipers leading their clueless yet inflamed supporters off a cliff.
So how did Obama singlehandedly turn the tables?
As The New York Times reported:
The president, the official said, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss the issue candidly, “deliberately and ambitiously pushed the envelope on climate.” And on Saturday, Mr. Obama said the Paris agreement had been possible in large part because he had done so. This year, he issued regulations to slash carbon pollution from power plants, and last year he forged an emissions reduction agreement with President Xi Jinping of China that encouraged other nations to set their own climate goals.
“We’ve transformed the United States into the global leader in fighting climate change,” Mr. Obama said on Saturday, referring to the “chaotic” Copenhagen talks. “We’ve set the first-ever nationwide standards to limit the amount of carbon pollution power plants can dump into the air our children breathe.”
America a leader on climate change? The main guilty party in causing the problem in the first place? A seemingly impossible feat. But surely one man cannot do an end run round Congress. Well it turns out that the Paris accord was signed onto by every country on the planet because every Country on the planet listens to scientists, not morons. It turns out that the language of the agreement fully recognizes that the US Congress is incapable of intelligent thought – so they have figured out a way round that.
Instead of making the law internationally binding – such a law having to be ratified by the Congress – they have instead set up a series of deadlines by which countries must submit progress reports, every five years, using uniform accounting measures. What this means is that if the US insists on remaining the dunce in the class (or puppet to the fossil fuel industry) they will have to stand up in class and acknowledge it, quantify it. That would mean that the US would own the consequences of climate change and be clearly visible as the main enemy of mankind. Try translating that into protecting American interest in any future international accords, trade deals etc. Quite Brilliant.
Obama faced a similar situation regarding dealing with Iran. Israel wanted the US to take out Iran. Netanyahu and his billionaire buddies in the USA have pretty much bought up the Stupidparty Congress, assisted by some key legislators like Chuck Schumer who apparently forget which country they are citizens of. How to avert war with Iran? How to avert war with Iran with 47 Senators who were so extreme that they were willing to commit treason in an effort to torpedo Obama’s efforts? Well Obama adopted a similar strategy –basically work with every other nation on the planet to do an end run on the US congress. Sanctions against Iran were working. Then the Iranians elect a very decent moderate in order to reach out to the Americans. Obama engages in highly secret and personal diplomacy. Then he gets the main countries in the world to engage in highly complex negotiation with Iran. The only people who are against the deal are the Stupidparty and their base. Yes Netanyahu may appear to be against it –but I suspect that he was simply playing to a similar base in Israel in order to retain power. The Israelis behind the scenes would have been fully involved in helping to get the best deal possible- and the Israeli security establishment was largely behind the deal.
So how did Obama win? Well he isolated the bad guys into two camps—the extremists in Iran and the extremists in the US Congress. If the extremists were to succeed in scuttling the deal they would be judged by the company they keep. The Iran deal is the greatest foreign policy coup since the Camp David Accords signed by Egyptian President Anwar El Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin on 17 September 1978, overseen by Jimmy Carter. Carter got his Noble Peace Prize, Obama already has his –because the Nobel Peace committee had already spotted something to which most Americans remain oblivious. Quite Brilliant.
Began Asia “Pivot:” In 2011, he reoriented American military and diplomatic priorities and focus from the Middle East and Europe to the Asian-Pacific region. Obama executed a multipronged strategy of positively engaging China while reasserting U.S. leadership in the region by increasing American military presence and crafting new commercial, diplomatic, and military alliances with neighboring countries made uncomfortable by recent Chinese behavior. Quite Brilliant.
After the disastrous Bush Wars during 2000 to 2008, Americans finally twigged that being the world’s policeman was just counterproductive. But the debate about whether the US should be the world’s one man enforcer has been fundamentally altered by the unheralded policies of Obama. Perhaps Japan and other Far East nations can be cajoled into becoming a better buttress against Chinese imperialism; in Libya the USA set the playing field but forced NATO to execute. Syria is another case in point, where the battle lines have not yet devolved into East/West conflict and in fact the reverse is likely, as I will explain later. The French took responsibility for dealing with Mali, and international efforts to pressure Iran were well coordinated and lead to the Iran deal. Quite Brilliant.
But it’s Obama’s quiet patience and determination that is the most misunderstood weapon in his arsenal. Much to the horror of his opponents in the 2008 election –he made it plain that he would go into Pakistan (without permission if necessary) to get Bin Laden—and he did. Further, Obama’s central role in the successful attack on Iran’s ability to enrich uranium in 2010 only came out in 2012. North Korea v Sony—North Korea loses the internet and an Obama official simply says “accidents will happen.” Quite Brilliant.
But perhaps the most misunderstood actual crisis was Russia’s takeover of the Crimea and invasion, by proxy, of Ukraine. Obama recognized that the Crimean intervention, while illegal, was also a bit more nuanced that generally understood. So Obama resisted pressure to go on the offensive. He took the heat—the knee-jerk Stupidparty criticisms and their demands for aggressive action. Likewise his inaction in Ukraine drew much criticism. Obama was trying diplomacy and, yes, it did appear that this diplomacy was failing. He did not let such apparent failure lead him into making a fatal yet popular strategic error. Now remember the Stupidparty loves war –for political reasons. The reason why the second Iraq war was preordained was because George Bush, with Karl Rove and the rest, was fixated on the political advantages of having a small war. They looked at polls after Margaret Thatcher won the Falklands War and after Bush Sr. won the first Iraq war. But the difference with Obama is that first and foremost he is just a decent human being. Waging a war for the wrong reasons makes you a war criminal.
But then Putin made his fatal mistake(s): 1) He underestimated/disrespected Obama; 2) His illegal actions lead to the downing of a commercial airliner. This resulted in economic sanctions and, more importantly, the flooding of the oil market. The Americans – who do not give a damn about international soccer – took down FIFA. If they (the Obama Justice department) chose to do so, it would lead right back to Putin’s door, ending Russia’s hosting of the 2018 World Cup. Within a year Putin would be on his knees – for the following reasons: Oil falling from $110 a barrel to $40. (Only bad guys win with rising oil prices)
- International sanctions targeting Putin’s fellow oligarchs.
- International sanctions prevent investing in oil infrastructure.
- The populist Crimean intervention – a financial drain. Now less popular.
- The populist Ukrainian intervention – a financial drain. Now less popular.
- The populist Syrian intervention, not achieving expected results. Now less popular.
This has all resulted in tanking the Russian economy, with the average consumer 30% less well off and Putin’s reputation at home under real threat. Putin’s strategies, while looking superficially strong, (making Stupidparty envious) have failed and are not sustainable. He needs to have sanctions removed in order to even maintain his ability to produce his ever less valuable oil.
Putin, the supposed chess grandmaster, exposed his queen and the real grandmaster – Obama – has pretty much checkmated Putin. Now Obama is too smart to waste this opportunity by trying to humiliate Putin; no, he will wait for Ukraine to stabilize (this is already happening) and then he will use these advantages to encourage the Russians to work more closely with the West to tackle Syria and ISIS. He will allow Putin to save face in return. Quite Brilliant.
Achieved New START Treaty: Signed with Russia (2010) and won ratification in Congress (2011) of treaty that limits each country to 1,550 strategic warheads (down from 2,200) and 700 launchers (down from more than 1,400), and reestablished and strengthened a monitoring and transparency program that had lapsed in 2009, through which each country can monitor the other. Quite Brilliant.
Now lets us turn to the domestic front, and deal with some generally accepted Stupidparty myth making in the process:
Oh and this has got to hurt -if you are an idiot that is. Repeal This!!
Now at this point I wanted to do a reality check. Just check into see what Stupipdarty disciples and their fake journalists have to say.
Let me cover their crux complaints:
- Obama lost $25 billion on bailing out Chrysler and GM. Oh Yucky Bail out!
- Number of people out of work has actually increased.
- Obama just spends too much money.
- The national debt is worse.
- Then they just make shit up – as I have proven, Stupidparty lies are 100% more voluminous than Democratic lies
1. The beautiful bailout:
- Actually the taxpayers lost $9 billion on this rather small part of the bailout. What this criticism fails point out is than Obama saved the entire American auto industry – with all the associated parts companies and dealers etc., i.e. it was an extraordinarily good investment.
- First, the term bailoutis inflammatory, as there are better descriptions – the simple fact is that these were loans; in many cases the taxpayers took huge ownership positions in the companies in question. In some cases it could be argued that the price the government demanded was too high, i.e. AIG comes to mind. Regardless, what never seems to be mentioned is that the taxpayers made out like bandits. Evidently the taxpayers profited by $52 billion.
- But not so fast -evidently the taxpayers did not simply make $52 billion –they actually made approximately $350 billion. See below graph:
I guess I had better explain that “windfall” Fed profit. Any profits made by the Fed must go to the taxpayer. Normally the Fed makes $30 billion profit a year. I have not included that $30 billion in the above chart. But what did the Obama administration have to do to prevent a financial meltdown and then get the economy in growth mode? It had to provide cheap money to people who were too scared to lend. It had to create money out of thin air- and then they receive magical additional interest payments on this money. Therefore in the last six years the Fed has earned $474 billion in interest, instead of the expected $180 billion = a windfall profit of $294 billion. Regardless, Quite Brilliant:
2. The invented unemployment catastrophe.
Not withstanding the fact that the unemployment rate has fallen by half, evidently everything keeps getting worse, all because of Obama. OK, this is the big Stupidparty con – they are now relying on something called the Labor Force Participation Rate. See how from 1948 to 1996 the participation rate steadily increased as more women entered the labor force, beefing up family earning and middle class prosperity. But this rate has been falling for the last 15-20 years and is projected to keep falling through around 2050. These projections were made in 2002, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2012. i.e. everyone knew this was going to happen, way before Obama came into office, way before the great recession.
So what do economists understand that Stupidparty cheats choose not to understand?
There are simply many more people who choose not to work. For the vast majority of these people the reasons vary, from choosing to be at home caring for children or other relatives, to returning to school or taking on other tasks important to their families. In October 2014, government data-gatherers found that one of those things was true about a little more than 93 percent of adults not in the labor force.
2012 article by economists at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago concluded that just under half the decline “can be explained by long-running demographic patterns, such as the retirement of baby boomers.”
So what else has changed? Basically, the nature of work has changed. Back fifty years ago people would get a job for life, with paternalistic benefits and, often, with stronger unions to protect their rights. Now people are expected to change job and careers, and learn new skill sets all the time. Today Americans who are fully employed work on average 47 hours a week. I also suspect that another key reason is that a lot of employers fail to provide benefits and expect virtually free robotic labor –to the point that going to work in the retail, food or hospitality industries barely makes economic sense if you can possibly avoid it. This is of course the result of trickle-down economics whereby the 1% gets 99% of the increased productivity of the 99%. So what does the work force really look like?
So yet again, when you hear a Stupidparty person talking, you know that they are talking nonsense.
3. Hey Big Spender –spend a little truth with me.
The fact is that Obama has been able to sustain his recovery by slowing government spending more dramatically than anyone listed on this chart:
4.The Debt! The Debt ! The Debt ! we are all doomed.
Well here is the thing about the debt. If you have policies that destroy the economy –unfettered capitalism leading to the depression and the great recession –you have no choice but to borrow money to reflate the economy. The one thing you do not do is have austerity in a deflationary environment. The other thing to consider is, what is wrong with having more debt if it costs next to nothing to service that debt? The better one is at running one’s economy, the better the relative deal you get on the cost of borrowing money. So why did the USA recover from the great recession so much faster than anyone else? They printed money, the economy was saved, and then they could borrow money at 0.1%. The Europeans until recently refused to be as aggressive and countries like Spain were paying 10%, Greece 15%, Italy 10% – the Germans too stubborn to realize that you cannot emerge from deflation with these borrowing costs. Or were they being smart in removing failed leadership and only reducing borrowing costs when suitable governments were elected? Anyway Europe has finally gotten the message and they are on the road to recovery. But once again the Obama team has been proven correct.
- It is not how big it is that really matters:
The government today pays 6% of all federal outlays on servicing its debt –back in the mid 1990s they were paying 15% for the same activity. Let me illustrate: if you can get a mortgage at 1% -surely you would have many more options than if you had to pay 5%. The size of the debt may appear to be going up all the time but bear in mind that in real terms the debt shrinks as a result of inflation and increased GDP. Having a certain amount of debt is vital –it mean that a government can invest in projects with a far higher pay back than companies or consumers. Companies might not want a payback of more than seven years, or consumers of three to five years. So bearing all this mind perhaps it is better to look at the pattern of the budget deficit
Suddenly the debt, and how Obama has handled the deficit looks Quite Brilliant. Stupidparty always moans about the deficit and if you repeat nonsense often enough it seems that people just assume it is factual. So we need to remind ourselves of who can and cannot control the deficit:
Actual Jobs created:
So I have said Quite Brilliant quite a few times and I have brushed off Stupidparty criticisms with apparent ease. For me it is easy, because I know that these guys have nothing. They really are the Stupidparty and anyone using another term –such as the GOP or the Republican Party –well that just sounds wrong. I mean really wrong, like nails scratching a chalkboard wrong. It tells me that for the user of such terminology, the penny has yet to drop. But how can I prove definitively that I am absolutely and irrefutably correct? Oh I know, I just have to show you Obama’s actual fact-checked numbers. Remember, most of these numbers will only get better over the two years, because Obama owns the period mid-2009 to mid-2017 – not the period 2008-2016:
To most people the food stamp number will look bad, but few realize how food stamps work, who the beneficiaries are, and the amazing stimulative impact they have on the economy, compared to tax cuts for the wealthy. But the higher numbers are caused by: A) easier eligibility passed by Bush in 2008, B) recession –there is always a lag before numbers come down, and c) Obama has not been allowed to reverse the trickle-down economics that Americans still embrace –thus poverty will keep getting worse. One day the penny will drop, because today’s income discrepancy trends, if left unabated, can only lead to fascism or civil unrest—the Hunger Games if you will.
Americans might be blind, but for the rest of the world, for people who can actually see the forest from the trees, it is as clear as daylight. The day Obama took office till July 2015: