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Obama a "one-termer"?
Posted by: McQ on Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Yeah I know, "nice" - the guy hasn't even been inaugurated and I've already declared him a one-term president.

But I've had a theory that no matter which candidate won the presidential election, he'd be a one-term president. My thinking is that the economic situation would dictate that, not being particularly better in 2012 than it is now. And right or wrong presidents are given credit or saddled with blame for whatever economic conditions prevail at election time.

James Pethokoukis has much the same thought and concludes:
Reagan worked his magic with tax cuts. Obama is trying to do the same with government spending. But stimulus packages are only supposed to keep the recession from getting worse or morphing into a mini-depression. I don't think anyone expects that $500 billion in hot money to return America to prosperity. Only time (and the private sector) can do that, especially with a downturn caused by a credit crisis and deflating asset bubble. And four years may not be enough time for the Obama presidency to traverse that long road or complete that steep climb.
Read the whole thing - he lays out a pretty good case, economically. Politically, who knows? Obama might weather it. There's always Bush to blame it on. I just have to wonder if he's good for 4 years?
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Previous Comments to this Post 

Just finished reading the commentary. Pretty good case is made. Now, if the republicans can get their act together it presents a great opportunity for the next election cycle. Oh, what am I saying! The republicans get their act together!. Silly me. Never mind.
Written By: jjmurphy
I don’t know if I’m gonna disagree, but....

I didn’t think that even with the media willing to wipe their butts on their reputations would Obama! be elected.
I was wrong.
With 4 years of the media telling us it’s all Bush’s fault, do you think that voters will blame anything on Obama!?

Do you remember the 90s? Clinton could do literally anything he wanted and get away with it. Ask anybody about his impeachment and they will say, "It was all about sex". When they were forced to cover some scandal or other, they framed it as Republicans being mean.

Recall, the GOP got a leaked memo that made the Dems look bad and the story was the leak and how the GOP are meanies. The Dems get a leaked memo that makes the GOP look bad and the story is that the GOP are meanies.

As that old commercial for the NY Times said, "It’s the way they surround a story."

It’s going to be more and more difficult to judge how people are going to vote when they are not only uninformed, but misinformed and actively disinformed.

Recall the election coverage about Ayres, Wright, Joe the Plumber, NAFTA, gun control........ I could go on forever, but any comments that tried to point out Obama!’s past statements or postions were racist attacks.

Now you get to add in how he started intimidating the media even before elected. Recall those two tv stations that had the temerity to ask Biden about an Obama! quote and were then publicly (publicly!!! they didn’t even try to pretend to hide it) blackballed, kicking off his plane the reporters from newspapers who chose McCain over him off, avoiding the media for weeks during the campaign.....

The NYTimesWashPostCNNABCCBSNBCetc. still have great power over what people see and believe and have proven that they see no limits on exercising that power for their own, partisan, ends.

At least this end of civilization is funny. Not like when the barbarians sacked Constantinople or Rome. Those guys weren’t funny, just murderous.
Written By: Veeshir
URL: http://
Obama cultists will ensure he gets 2 terms. The place to focus is on the house and senate.
Written By: shark
URL: http://
So, I guess Franklin D. was just another one term president.

Written By: John
URL: http://

So, I hope they do get 60 senators. No excuses then, really.

Also, McQ has sold me on the idea that the average voter won’t take excuses after some period of time. I think even with MSM cheerleading, 2-3 years will be more than enough. So, they might eke out mid-term elections (though that’s when the O-phoria will mean less Dem turn out.) But by 2011, only the partisans will be talking about Bush.

Remember, all of those 52% who voted for him were not Democrat partisans, but the great middle - and they can vote for Bush in 2004 and then Obama in 2008. A lot depends on how he governs.

Also, please note that usually fiscal stimulus that does not take the form of tax cuts, usually comes too late to help. I was thinking that if we have to do fiscal spending stimulus, why not build some nuclear power plants? But by the time the environmental impact reports are filed, the recession will be long gone. So its very hard to actually help a recession using spending. Maybe his "refundable tax credits" would do better.

As an aside, one idea I had for supporters of low taxation and government spending is to create a sort of "unit pricing" for government...basically a set of metrics that a party could ascribe to (maybe this exists already)


Taxation % of GDP.
% of population paying net taxes


Ideally, you could imagine we would have flat tax rate, with a straight income subsidy, which you could use to judge a parties’ platform.

Oh, so Obama will raise the rate to 18% and the subsidy will jump to x amount, and he would like to target 55% of GDP coming from government.

I know that’s probably not possible, but wouldn’t it help to cut through some of the BS and also help explain how big the government has gotten. (not an economist please be gentle.)

Written By: Harun
URL: http://
Most New Agers I’ve encountered love Obama. (Apparently the Cult of the State—in Obama’s case, coupled with the Cult of Personality—is now spiritually enlighted. Whatever.) I’ve questioned them on how they think Obamanomics will work, and more basically, if it can work. For example, can a nation—Winston Churchill to the contrary notwithstanding—actually tax itself into prosperity? They don’t really have an answer, but have great confidence in the Annointed One, and in Hope and Change. So apparently they’re going to burn enough incense, chant enough affirmations, and fondle enough crystals to suspend the laws of economics and make Obama’s economic neo-Marxism work in spite of itself. So we can all take heart. Hey, it makes as much rational sense as most of what calls itself "liberalism" these days.
Written By: Bilwick
URL: http://

FDR was president during a time when people did not have as much education, had lower access to information, and did not have today’s limited attention spans.

If Obama rules very pragmatically, as a moderate, and reins in his party’s enthusiasm for programs, he will have less of a problem being re-elected.

Union card checks, lots of "bail-outs", increases in taxes, etc. will end up the "little people" figuring out that they wuz robbed. I especially want to hold Obama accountable for foreign policy. That means, I expect to see a division of German conscripts on the ground in Helmand province based on his "healing our alliance."

Also, anyone else notice that in the past three days, bombs have exploded in Baghdad and made Yahoo headlines (my metric for "news.") Is this a serious increase in violence, the media reminding us about Bush, or the insurgents playing on the elections? I don’t know.

Written By: Harun
URL: http://
Bilwick, see the book Liberal Fascism, which I once thought was a little over-wrought, but I do think is now coming true in some aspects, like cult of the State, "unity" etc. I really think thoughtful Libs should read that book. May not be palatable, but I bet the find stuff they don’t like in their own party echoed there.
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
Well after this cabinet the end may come sooner that expected

Take a look at the names

Al Gore as Climate Czar, etc
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
oops, you already posted on this, serves me to read downwards :)
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
That would be NICE if he was only one term...what would REALLY be interesting is to find out on December 1 that he does not have valid proof that he is an american citizen. Actually, what’s been happening as far as i can see is the worst case scenarios coming to be. what next, God Help Us! With our luck and the expertise of the pundits, they are wrong. I’m prepared that Americans (i hate calling them that) will continue to vote themselves largess thru their messiah because he’s already warned them that they may have to wait for the NEXT four years. They were dumb enough to believe him and his message of handouts this time, i don’t see any change in that level of naievete.
Written By: Calypso Jones
URL: http://
I know that this sounds like "he is only CYA," but in a strange way I am glad McCain lost. Why? Look at 1928.

Let’s go back to that election, between Al Smith and Herbert Hoover. Imagine, for a moment, that Hoover lost to Smith, albeit narrowly. Economy-wise, there would not have been much difference between the two, and thus the stock market would have crashed in October 1929 no matter who was President. What would Smith have done differently in the aftermath? Raise taxes? He certainly wouldn’t have lowered them. He would have had Congress spend more, but, overall, the Depression would have hit and there would have been little Smith could do.

In 1930, the Democrats would not have won the Congress, and, in 1932, the GOP could have run on "we had prosperity in the 1920s under Harding and Coolidge, but we turned it over to the Democrats and look what they have done." So, in 1932, the Republicans would have won (was there a strong GOP governor to run?)...there would have been no FDR, and we would not have been shut out of the White House until 1952.

So, the lesson here is that sometimes you "win" by "losing." Watch the news, read the papers: tings are going to get much worse in the coming year. Much worse. And the deficit is poised to explode. The international situation in the world will be horrific, what with Afghanistan falling apart, Iran poised to get a nuke, Israel fighting terrorists (and Netanyahu saying he will stop peace talks if he wins the prime ministership), and the world plunging into an economic quagmire. Add that to the moves Obama will make against guns and for gays in the military (as he makes the same mistake Clinton did in his first days in office), and you have a man who, in 2010, will be as unpopular as the clap.

If the GOP plays its cards right, and stands back and allows the Dems to make fools of themselves in the majority (as they did in 1993-94 with a Dem in the White House), we can run in 2010 on "Obama and Pelosi and Reid: Triple Doom for America," and we can possibly take back the House and win a good number of seats in the Senate. And then we can run against Obama in 2012 on "the do-nothing Obama."

Remember that Obama, in 2008, got only 400,000 votes more than Kerry did in 2004. Many of those were independents who took a chance on an unknown who promised "change" and "hope." If by 2012 the economy is in bad shape, as I suspect it will be, those 400,000 and even more will peel away or stay home, and Obama will be a one-termer.

As I said: sometimes you "win" by "losing." Ask the Democrats in 1928 how true that is.
Written By: James Marsden
URL: http://
FDR was president during a time when people did not have as much education, had lower access to information, and did not have today’s limited attention spans.
Well yes, but he prolonged the Great Depression seven years and was rewarded with four terms in office (and may have had more if he lived).

Even if we are smarter about economics now, that’s scary stuff.
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Harun, I don’t think it would matter if there were 100 Dem Senators and 434 Dem Reps, the media would still spend the next however long Obama! is president telling us why it’s Bush’s fault.

Despite hours of video of Dem congresscritters talking about how great Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are and how their helping unqualified people to get loans is great, the media still managed to hang it on the GOP.

The media has proven that they will lie, lie, lie for their chosen candidates. Since most people still get their news from them, and since they don’t report when they’ve been caught as liars and since their corrections are never as prominently placed as their hit-pieces, it just won’t matter what the truth is.

How many people think Palin is stupid? People who’ve met her claim she has a photographic memory and is not stupid while "unnamed sources" call her stupid, yet the narrative is that from the "unnnamed sources".
Written By: Veeshir
URL: http://
And more genius from the coming Democratic Obama administration -
Barney Frank is upset that executives from bailed out institutions might get bonuses (we agree on that...) but here’s a gem of thought from the former Rocket Scientist, current chairman of the House Financial Services Committee.
And the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, Massachusetts Democrat Barney Frank, isn’t happy. "These are people who lost enormous amounts of money," Frank observes. "How do you give a bonus to someone for having failed so badly as many of these people did?"
That’s right d@mmit! You don’t give them bonuses!

You give them significant roles in the government financial management areas of the new Obama administration.
Written By: looker
URL: http://
So, I guess Franklin D. was just another one term president.
The problem with this quip is that FDR was FDR, a man from one of the most politically powerful families in the US, who had not only served in the NY State Senate, but also as Asst Secretary of the Navy and Governor of NY. FDR had much experience and a very large network to draw upon as president.

Obama comes from the radical left and Saul Alinsky organizing plus the IL State Senate and that’s it.

I don’t think Obama is nearly as smart as he thinks and his followers believe. At best he is going to have a rocky learning curve as president—worse than JFK’s—in a very unforgiving environment.
Written By: huxley
URL: http://
Another important difference between the 1930s and now is that foreign countries hold a large amount of American debt — effectively a choke chain if the Obama administration wants to go on a big new New Deal spending spree.

I also don’t see Obama, barring another large terrorist attack, being able to rally the country as FDR did. The right is not going to go MoveOn/Kos nutty against Obama, but they aren’t going to warm much to him either and the media glorification of Obama will do him little good with those voters who aren’t forget the 2008 campaign.
Written By: huxley
URL: http://
This is a must listen to video.

A mandatory paramilitary???

What the heck happened to the US military that we need this?

Listen to Rahm Emmanuael make fun of the reporters concerns.

When do we start using the H word? Fairness doctrine with teeth!!??
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
Don’t get your hopes too high. He only has to pull off a very modest and sluggish economic recovery in three and a half years and will be reelected with a huge majority.
Written By: kyleN

I agree that he will get 8 if he keeps relatively moderate and reigns in the Congress. That might not happen though.
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
Hi. Very interesting and informative. I really enjoyed visiting.
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