The anti-business, socialist President strikes again

Republicans have attacked Barack Obama for being anti-business and socialist over and over and over again since his election in 2008.

So, how’s that been working out?

Well, business profits are up.  Way up.

The Fortune 500 generated a total of $824.5 billion in earnings last year, up 16.4% over 2010. That beats the previous record of $785 billion, set in 2006 during a roaring economy.

The stock market is up.  Way up.

The Dow Jones industrial average has soared 62 percent since President Barack Obama took the oath of office during some of the darkest days of the Great Recession. The Dow was just below 8,000 then and stands near 13,000 today.

Corporations have record amounts of cash on their balance sheets.

Apple Inc. (AAPL), the world’s most valuable business, led U.S. corporations in amassing a record $1.24 trillion of cash last year as memories of the 2008 credit crisis linger, according to Moody’s Investors Service.

Excluding Apple, with $97.6 billion of cash and no outstanding debt, the figure was relatively unchanged at $1.15 trillion, even as revenue and cash flow from operations rose to a record, Moody’s analysts led by Richard Lane said in a report yesterday.

Government (federal, state, and local) is smaller.

For the first time in 40 years, the government sector of the American economy has shrunk during the first three years of a presidential administration.

Spending by the federal government, adjusted for inflation, has risen at a slow rate under President Obama. But that increase has been more than offset by a fall in spending by state and local governments, which have been squeezed by weak tax receipts.

Source: New York Times, based on Bureau of Economic Analysis data

It seems the anti-business, socialist President has actually worked out pretty well for corporate America.


16 Responses to “The anti-business, socialist President strikes again”

  1. Thankfully, he no longer has the house in his pocket and cannot get bills with his agenda anymore. His signature acheivements are socialist. Obamacare and bailouts were accomplished when he had both houses under control. And his affordable healthcare has proven to be anything but affordable. Oh and he extended the Bush tax cuts, which he used to say caused the recession, while using them to get out of it. Hardy har.

  2. There is honestly nothing “socialist” about any of these policies. This is a fearmongering term that gets misused and overused all of the time. I actually feel like some people confuse living in a society with being a socialist. Here are the actual definitions of socialism:

    a: a system of society or group living in which there is no private property b: a system or condition of society in which the means of production are owned and controlled by the state

    What parts of the Affordable Healthcare Act do you believe fit this definition? You might disagree with parts of Obamacare but the discussion would be better served if you could more accurately describe what you don’t like with some facts or words other than “socialist”.

    Also, the “bailouts” started during the last months of the Bush administration with the financial industry and most economists still agree that it had to be done but really should have been on a larger scale to have avoided much of the financial depression we still experienced. I do, however, expect Obama to take full credit though for saving the American auto industry and millions of related jobs – despite Mr. Romney’s new claim that somehow he should take credit for that success. It was the right thing to do.

    • This is a fearmongering term that gets misused and overused all of the time.

      Like the Newsweek magazine cover after he was elected?

  3. I have no idea what you are talking about, you are going to have to be more specific. What about a discussion of the actual points Sean made or I made? I’ll ask again, What parts of the Affordable Healthcare Act do you believe fit this definition [of socialist] ?

    • News had a cover with the title “We’re all socialists now”. I guess they were fearmongering.

      • Yeah, I think they got it wrong and I think they were trying to sell magazines with a sensational cover. I’m not sure what point you are trying to make bringing that up – seems like a diversion. What parts of the Affordable Healthcare Act do you believe are socialist? What about the other facts that Sean pointed out?. Looks like thing have actually been pretty good for business and capitalism.

      • The point that I’m making is in refernce to your fearmongering claim. The Newsweek magazine is a left-wing publication, and if they were trying to fearmonger due to a new president, or his meddlings into the economy, it would seem that this term socialism is being thrown around by both the left and right. I would seem from that cover that Newsweek thought our slide to socialism as a good thing, which is something most Americans would certainly disagree with.

        The more control we havef at the federal level of our health care, the more socialist it becomes. In your definition above, I find that ownership by the state is a more communistic ideal, where as control of production by the state is socialism. At least that’s the definition according to the Democratic Socialists of America.

        • The definition comes from Merriam-Webster. I am going to assume since you continue to focus on Newsweek that you have nothing else, As I suspected, you have no specifics as to how the Affordable Health Care act is socialist.

      • And yet I do have specifics. Federal control of our health care is socialsim. The mandate requires all to participate, under penalties from the state. This doesn’t sound like a free society when you are forced into a progam. When you think about it, social security is by it’s own name socialist. Its federal control over retirement. Medicare as well.

        Voluntary participation in a health care plan, while combining groups in a co-operative type of cost control isn’t socialism. Pre-Obama care insurance is like joining Costco. You pay for a membership that allows for the priveldge to get services at a reduced rate. If food gets to be too expensive, are we going to mandate that everyone join Costco or Sam’s Club?

        The only reason I brought up Newsweek, is because you claim calling something socialist is fearmongering. I say it’s calling a spade a spade. And when you look at Obamacare objectively, not considering whether the term socialism has negative connotations or not, it is a socialist form of health care. The fact that the state hasn’t yet taken over the means of production may make some beleive it’s not socialist, but in my opinion, and many others, that’s just spin. Regulation for protection of the citizens is one thing. Forced participation is another.

        Even the latest imigration actions are getting socialized. The administration’s actions against AZ, refusing the right of the state to enforce immagration policy can be considered socialist. Here the state (nation state) has taken complete control and means of immigration, including enforcement. And while they are failing miserably, and border state suffers the consequences, forcing the individual states to adhere to nationally failing control and enforcement is in fact a socialist policy.

        • The problem with your “forced participation” argument is that people who don’t purchase health insurance are in fact making a choice — and their choice is to put the taxpayer on the hook for their medical care.

          Someone who doesn’t have health care and suffers a critical injury or severe illness is going to be treated in the emergency room and if they can’t pay it out of pocket, then it’s going to get paid by the government or by raising rates on people with insurance.

          So, whether you like it or not, you’re in the health care market regardless of your insurance status. What the Affordable Care Act does is force the free riders to take personal responsibility and pay for that guarantee of care that we as a society are giving them.

      • That’s not entirely true. For some folks it’s cheaper not to have insurance. They will pay thier bills as necesssary, even if in an accident. they’ll probably pay more for a doctor visit because they aren’t enrolled in a price club like most of us. My son did this for years. It was cheaer for him not to get insurance, due some existing crap he had years ago, where it seemed he might have Hodgkins Lymphoma. Thankfully, his body fought it off before it became full blown Hodgkins. But until just last year, he self insured, because it was cheaper. He paid all of his bills, as needed.

        Not everyone is trying to game the system. They are making smart financial choices, something of which the federal government has little or no understading, apparently.

        • If your son had been in a serious car accident, though, would he have been able to pay the bills? Could he have funded a two-week hospital stay with time in ICU? If someone can’t afford to pay it out of pocket, then what? Toss them out on the street?

      • He’s currently making payments to cover his bills. We have another friend who was playing flag football and cracked his skull and nearly died. The family is making monthly payment to pay for the extended hospital stay. Anyone can get basic insurance for catastrophic events, and it’s actually pretty inexpensive. If you want to join the price club for routine health care, that’s when it gets expensive.

        And let’s not pretend that Obamacare takes care of this expense. Everyone’s premiums have gone up due to Obamacare. There’s nothing affordable about the Affordable act. The more socialized we make this, the more expensive it gets. You force insurance to cover everything underf the sun and expect the cost to come down. But since the Democrats refuse to address the actual causes of high medical costs, we’re never going to have affordable health care.

        • It’s not easy to get any sort of health insurance if you have a pre-existing condition.

          In terms of costs, neither party has really addressed the key factors behind the expense. Republicans focus on malpractice expense, but that’s only 2% of the pie and is growing more slowly than the overall rate of health care inflation. Obamacare begins to flatten the curve, but you’re right that there’s more to be done.

      • I don’t buy that the malpractice is only 2% of the pie. Defensive medicine plays a huge part in that. I put an end to it when it happened to me. It was the most expensive chunk of nonsense I’ve ever been through. And it was pure CYA medicine. An ER visit that should have cost X was quickly multiplied by 10 or more. Most people would have gone along with the process and stayed as long as recommended, I’m guessing.

        • It’s hard to quantify defensive medicine concretely. Studies show that the costs of defensive medicine range anywhere from 2% – 30% of total health care costs. The best studies, IMO, from PriceWaterhouseCoopers and McKinsey peg the number at under 10%. And we know from states that have instituted tort reforms that defensive medicine practices don’t change and that malpractice insurance doesn’t get cheaper.

          So we should focus our efforts on reducing the real drivers of costs in the health care system.

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