From: Doug Bonnell
Received: Nov. 8
I apologize for the length of this note but here is my view: When President Obama took office in 2008, the U.S. economy was in recession heading for a depression, with a collapsing housing market compounded by a failing investment banking industry and the possible failures of General Motors and Chrysler.
The U.S. was experiencing an annual deficit due to unfunded tax decreases (for all, but favoring the wealthiest taxpayers), two unfunded wars, one of which was a mistake (you can argue about this, but the fact is that the U.S. had no justification for invading Iraq), and closing the prescription cost “doughnut hole” for seniors.
The investment banks that nearly collapsed the U.S. banking system helped export the U.S. recession to European countries, many of which already had economic issues. U.S. prestige worldwide was greatly diminished due to inconsistent and ineffective foreign policy, unilateral military actions and warlike rhetoric. It didn’t help that many of the unregulated financial instruments and derivatives sold worldwide by U.S. banks were worthless.
Both political parties can share the blame for the recession. The fact is, it occurred during the G.W. Bush administration, and there were warning signs.
Here’s where the U.S. economy is now: recovering slowly but steadily. The national stock averages have recovered most of their value. Companies are mostly profitable. Economists recognize that the recession that could have been a depression ended in 2009.
There is room for improvement, but the economy is clearly back on track. Employment is improving, adding jobs in the private sector, but is still a major problem.
During the political campaign, some thought foreign policy was an issue. I don’t believe this. The U.S. has reclaimed much of the prestige and moral high ground lost to us from 2000 to 2007, due to a consistent and effective foreign policy, and addressing many of our internal problems.
The U.S. has ended involvement in Iraq and is winding down in Afghanistan. The U.S. military tracked down and eliminated the Al-Qaeda leader. President Obama has not accomplished everything he needs to and has made mistakes, but there have been very few presidents who faced the many critical issues he was presented with.
I think he deserves credit for his leadership and courage. Hillary Clinton has been a very effective secretary of state, and we should be grateful to her for her leadership.
It’s time for the people who resent President Obama to realize that the world and the United States are very different than they were.
The message I took from this election is that while the U.S. has many differing viewpoints and opinions about our problems, we must realize that no one political party or viewpoint has all the answers.
Let’s reject the divisive and derogatory politics we just watched in this election. The face of the U.S. is changing; there are many more people of diverse heritage and cultures who live and work here (just look around Columbus).
Let’s focus on making positive change for the majority of the current and future citizens of the U.S. I believe most people are trying to elect leaders who will do this, and we started with electing Barack Obama for another term.