Last night, just minutes after the end of the State of the Union, ten members of the National Center’s Project 21 black leadership network issued blistering rebuttals to President Barack Obama’s angry rhetoric and sweeping promises.
Today, some of those same members have expanded their remarks while more Project 21 members added their own criticisms.
Derryck Green, who writes a monthly analysis about the state of the economy for Project 21 every month on the day federal jobless estimates are announced, added:
President Obama lacked the political capital coming into last night’s State of the Union address that he had last year. People have rightly lost faith in his leadership. It’s a result of his ineffective economic policies and the nightmarish effects of ObamaCare’s implementation (among many other things).
Knowing this, one would think that the President would humbly approach the American people with serious and constructive ideas to address the perils facing our nation.
Instead, the President chose to recycle the stale messages of increasing the minimum wage (for federal employees), feeding the envy that characterizes income inequality (which, by the way, increased during his presidency) and talked about a meaningless pledge from some corporations to give the long-term unemployed a “fair shot” at a new job.
The problem is that there are too few jobs and too many unemployed thanks to President Obama’s economic policies that have stifled growth and expansion.
As usual, the President prefers shallow campaign-style issues to serious economic policy.
As a result, President Obama once again demonstrated that progressives and their economic policies don’t seem to be focused on — or concerned with — creating and generating wealth. They only appear interested in the redistribution of it.
Five years or so into the President’s so-called recovery — a recovery that feels worse than the actual recession — it’s safe to say his administration has shown a remarkable and indefensible indifference to the U.S. economy at the expense of millions of Americans. And he doesn’t seem bothered by it. With the unemployment rate dropping because over 92 million Americans out of the workforce; a labor-force participation rate matching a 35-year low, 47 million Americans on food stamps and emergency unemployment benefits close to being extended, issues such as minimum wage and wealth redistribution — though characteristic of an unsound and unserious economic strategy — aren’t the solutions that are going to jumpstart a lagging economy.
It appears the President prefers empty campaign rhetoric to serious, thoughtful and productive economic policies.
Project 21 member Ak’bar Shabazz, a small businessman and music promoter, said:
Last night, President Obama spoke about income inequality, high corporate profits and stagnating wages for workers. He said he intends to help rectify this situation by at least increasing the minimum wage for federal workers by executive order.
This is a clear indication that the one who was supposed to unite the country has become impotent. He has to resort to force and strong-arm tactics to enact his version of change.
Of course, any increase in the minimum wage will have a minimal impact for Americans until inflation is reigned in by stopping the quantitative easing that has caused it to skyrocket.
Dr. Elaina George, a board-certified and award-winning otolaryngologist, commenting on President Obama’s cheerleading of his health care takeover, warned:
The power to choose your doctor and for you, in partnership with your doctor, to decide your course of treatment is the foundation of excellent medical care.
With the “Affordable Care Act” — ObamaCare — the government has inserted itself to become the final arbiter of your care. It will ultimately decide who the health winners and losers are. Proponents of ObamaCare want people to believe that the system is so broken that it can only be fixed through fundamental change. The disastrous roll-out has certainly fed the argument for a single-payer system, and there is an argument to be made that the government bailout written into the bill has actually already ushered in single-payer since whomever controls the money controls the access and thus makes the rules.
As the ObamaCare train wreck continues to roll out, it will become painfully obvious to patients that — although they have health insurance with no pre-existing conditions, free birth control and preventative care — they still may not be able to afford to access medical care when they need it because the out-of-pocket costs from their co-insurance and deductibles are so high. Or they will find that, because they qualified for a subsidy, they will have that money clawed back the following year if their financial situation improves. Even if they took the Medicaid option, they will be unable to leave any of their wealth to loved ones because the government will take it to recoup payments made for their health care.
Physicians will ultimately find that they will have no control of their talents. They will be considered to be providers of services that are a “right” that must be given for whatever value the government deems to be fair. They will become interchangeable with the health care team and, with that “innovation,” individualized health care and the art of medicine will be gone forever.
The antidote to what is ailing the American health care system is not more government intervention, but more choice via free-market medicine.
Project 21 member Demetrius Minor, a youth minister and former White House intern during the George W. Bush presidency, said:
If the job market was so great, there wouldn’t be a push for unemployment benefits because there would be a greater incentive to work.
I actually attempted to watch the entire State of the Union address, but the President’s glorification of an anemic economy forced me to turn away. A weak labor force and a generation welcoming a $17 trillion debt as a family heirloom is not economic progress.
Project 21 member Darryn “Dutch” Martin, a business consultant, remarked about Obama’s move to raise the federal contracting minimum wage:
Where’s Obama’s budget authority to do this?
Congress authorizes spending levels, not contract terms. The executive branch negotiates contracts within their authorized spending levels. So, yes, a president can issue this kind of executive order. But it doesn’t give him any more money to spend.
So, when prices go up, things won’t get done until Congress authorizes more money.