If you are going to call Obama a socialist
you will also have to call Bush a socialist.
After all they both out spend the first socialist
president FDR by huge margins.
Government spending was 21 percent of GDP last year [2008 under socialist President George W. Bush].
In 2009 [Obama's] plans would raise the federal portion of the U.S. economy to about 31 percent, more than twice the level after eight years of FDR's historic New Deal spending.
In the 1930s federal outlays represented just 3.4 percent of the nation's economy. Roosevelt's efforts to fight the Depression with government spending caused outlays to rise to 12 percent by 1941. [Of course FDR was the first really big SOCIALIST to be a US President!]
So who says we ain't a socialist state yet!!!!!
Obama aid dwarfs FDR's New Deal
Effort is sweeping and historic in scope, but many unsure of success
by Tom Raum - Feb. 21, 2009 12:00 AM
WASHINGTON - In sheer size, the economic measures announced by President Barack Obama to address "a crisis unlike we've ever known" are remarkable, rivaling and in many cases dwarfing the New Deal programs that Franklin D. Roosevelt famously created to battle the Great Depression.
Winning approval was a political tour de force for the new administration. Yet gloom and uncertainty persist about the plan's ability to deliver a cure for the economy's severe ailments.
Stocks plunged to six-year lows after the burst of bill signings, bailout announcements and presidential pledges.
And polls indicate Americans are increasingly worried about losing jobs and not having enough money to pay their bills.
Why the skepticism?
Maybe there has just been too long a run of bad news. Arthur Hogan, chief market analyst at Wachovia Securities, blames much of the negativity on "the fact that people are so down; they have no confidence in the future."
Republicans complain about wasted money. Some Democratic supporters say the plan won't help very much very quickly.
Former President Bill Clinton, who gives Obama high marks for straight talk in telling the nation the bad economic news, said Obama may try a more upbeat approach now.
"I just want the American people to know that he's confident that we are going to get out of this and he feels good about the long run," Clinton said Friday on ABC News' "Good Morning America."
Patience, pleads the administration. Lawrence Summers, Obama's chief economic adviser, said the success of the plan will be measured "not by daily market reaction but what happens over time." Still," Summers said, "we are moving rapidly."
No matter how people feel about the plans, they are undoubtedly ambitious - and expensive. Taxpayers will be paying for them long after Obama is out of office.
So far in his month-old presidency:
• Congress passed and Obama signed into law a record $787 billion mix of tax cuts, job-creating projects and aid to struggling states.
• The president pledged up to $275 billion in federal aid to help stem a tidal wave of home foreclosures.
• The Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve announced financial-rescue steps that could send up to $2 trillion coursing through the economy.
In all, the plans would raise the federal portion of the U.S. economy to about 31 percent, more than twice the level after eight years of FDR's historic New Deal spending.
"All Americans have a stake in making this work," Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said.
You wouldn't know it from the reaction. Rather than the bipartisan support Obama first sought, Republicans remain in nearly unanimous opposition. They contend that the stimulus package is tainted by wasteful spending and that the mortgage-foreclosure plan leaves out many struggling homeowners while rewarding lenders and borrowers who made bad decisions. Some Republican governors from the South even talk of spurning the new federal money.
Even while supporting the initiatives, some Democrats suggest the efforts won't deliver enough quick help to make a difference, despite the eye-popping price tags.
Joblessness keeps rising. Consumers and businesses are cutting back. Bank lending remains down. Auto demand keeps falling, with two Detroit automakers saying this week that they may need up to $21.6 billion more in U.S. loans beyond what they received in January.
"There is a degree of skepticism involved," said Ross Baker, a Rutgers University political-science professor. "Not surprisingly, people are wary of some very expensive proposals with no guarantee of success or even a high probability of how well they'll work."
Economists argue that many of the benefits from the Obama initiatives will take months, if not years, to arrive. The administration cites the complexities of trying to heal a downturn that has turned global.
"The president balances the challenges that we face with the understanding that we're going to get through tough times as we always have in this country," White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said Friday, when asked about Clinton's comments.
As for the New Deal, it's hard to compare Obama's moves with FDR's initiatives. They were a series of programs spread over years, not all-encompassing packages like the new proposals.
Rather than creating jobs, some of Roosevelt's signature programs dealt with revamping government structure, such as securities-market regulation and insuring bank deposits. His biggest idea, Social Security, didn't have much impact until later.
The largest of Roosevelt's job programs, the Works Progress Administration begun in 1935, did provide jobs across the nation building roads, bridges and other projects. Among his other job-creating programs were the Civilian Conservation Corps, the Civil Works Administration, the Public Works Administration and the Tennessee Valley Authority.
Historians and economists still debate whether FDR's New Deal fixed the crisis or prolonged the pain.
After taking office in 1933, Roosevelt first tried to slash government jobs and spending. His efforts to balance the budget in 1937 backfired and triggered a new recession within the broader Depression.
The 1930s began with federal outlays representing just 3.4 percent of the nation's economy as measured by the gross domestic product. Roosevelt's efforts to fight the Depression with government spending caused outlays to rise to 10.3 percent of GDP by 1939 and to 12 percent by 1941, on the eve of U.S. entry into World War II.
By contrast, government spending was 21 percent of GDP last year. Obama's economic-recovery policies are expected to bring it up to 30 percent or more.