What Happens If Obama Is Re-Elected?

Rush Limbaugh says it won’t be long before we implode…

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The transcript…

How long does this country have if Obama wins? We’re headed toward an economic collapse and we are the leader of the world. And when it happens to us, there are reverberations all over the world, it’s not like some poll dunk little European country collapsing that goes to another poll dunk European country for a bailout. When we collapse, world-wide reverberation. How long is it going to take? I’m asking a serious question. 18 months? You throw ObamaCare on to what we know what we are going to get from Obama, more debt, more spending, the expansion of the welfare state, how long can this go on?

How many of you think we are at the tipping point now? Medicare, Medicaid, social security, the years are 2020, 2022, 2024 as to when they implode.

How long do we have if this guy wins? And then what happens, if this guy wins?

Do you realize… who was it that I saw, Matthews was saying Friday on PSMNBC, if Obama wins, that’s the end of Conservatism. Nope, if Obama wins, it’s the end of the Republican Party. And there’s going to be a third party that’s going to be orientated towards Conservatism and Rand Paul thinks Libertarianism. If Obama wins, the Republican Party will try to maneuver things so Conservatives get blamed, the only problem is right now, Romney is not running a Conservative campaign. But they’re going to set it up, “Well, the right sat home, the right made Romney be other than he is.” They’ll try to deflect the blame, but they got who they want.

How long do we have, folks. I know people, who think 18 months before a real United States economic collapse. That the fed can’t do anything about, that the Chi-coms can’t do anything about. Two years, four? Point is, that’s what is on the other side of Obama winning, because he is not going to change anything.

Later in the show, he said this

“If Obama’s re-elected, it will happen. There’s no IF about this. And it’s gonna be ugly. It’s gonna be gut-wrenching, but it will happen. The country’s economy is going to collapse if Obama is re-elected. I don’t know how long: a year and a half, two years, three years.”

Limbaugh is expecting California to go belly up first, setting off a chain of financial calamities.

“California is going to declare bankruptcy and you know what Obama will do? He’ll go to states like Texas or Arizona, Florida to bail them out. That’s what he’ll do, and that’s gonna precipitate this stuff. California is showing where we’re headed in every which way,” Limbaugh said.

“This can’t go on, folks. We’re on an unsustainable course,” he continued. “You simply can’t pay people who aren’t working. You just can’t. You cannot pay them anything, much less full-fledged incomes, lifetime health care and lifetime pensions. You can’t do it. Even if you wanted to, even if that was your definition of fairness and equality, you can’t do it. The money isn’t there.

Is this just Limbaugh blowing hard about economics in an attempt to get attention?

We don’t think so. We think he’s probably right.

First of all, gasoline prices hit $3.83 per gallon on a national average. That’s up 108 percent from when Obama was re-elected.

A runup in fuel prices has preceded an economic downturn in virtually every case since World War II. The only reason to think it won’t happen now is there’s no more fat left to burn off in this economy, and as a result higher fuel prices won’t have the effect on the economy they would if it was in a pre-recession mode.

But it’s more than that. Doug Ross had several highly-informative graphs over the weekend, and here are three of them…

His conclusion…

That one simple question to ask: Can we survive four more years of this?

But the most telling giveaway amid the rotten economic record – punctuated by the news Friday that four times as many Americans left the workforce altogether as found a job in July, which makes Obama the first president in memory who can lower the unemployment rate and have it be bad news – is the tone of Obama’s speech on Thursday.

It was a campaign speech, for certain. But it was also a fairly significant shift – at least in this campaign. Obama painted himself as FDR…

You didn’t elect me to tell you what you wanted to hear. You elected me to tell you the truth. And the truth is, it will take more than a few years for us to solve challenges that have built up over decades. It will require common effort, shared responsibility, and the kind of bold, persistent experimentation that Franklin Roosevelt pursued during the only crisis worse than this one.

It’s worth mentioning that this is not the first time he’s attempted to don the FDR mantle with “bold, persistent experimentation.”

Now, the idea that Obama is FDR is ludicrous on one level – FDR had more faults than virtues, but weak leadership was not one of his faults. FDR was a brilliant political tactician and a ruthless administrator. He got things done. Of course, what FDR got done was disastrous and turned a very bad recession, or a depression if you will, into a decade-plus-long malaise in which the economy wouldn’t return to pre-1929 levels until three years after he was dead.

And as it turns out, that’s what Obama is now promising. He’s promising a redux of FDR’s policies which destroyed the private sector and kept the country in poverty.

And he doesn’t promise it, but the last time we saw those policies in this country it took a world war, and more to the point a post-war recovery, to end the malaise. But of course we then won the world war; we’d be favored to win the next one but there are no guarantees, particularly when 70-year old technology can produce a weapon capable of taking out a city.

Economic depression and scarcity lead to war. Human history proves this almost without exception. Obama doesn’t mention this, just like he doesn’t mention that the “bold, persistent experimentation that Franklin Roosevelt pursued during the only crisis worse than this one” was an unmitigated catastrophe when FDR tried it.

Even FDR’s Brain Trust ultimately recognized what a mistake “bold, persistent experimentation” was and how destructive its effects were…

[U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau, Jr.]: No, gentlemen, we have tried spending money. We are spending more than we have ever spent before and it does not work. And I have just one interest, and if I am wrong, as far as I am concerned, somebody else can have my job. I want to see this country prosperous. I want to see people get a job. I want to see people get enough to eat. We have never made good on our promises…

But why not let’s come to grips? And as I say, all I am interested in is to really see this country prosperous and this form of Government continue, because after eight years if we can’t make a success somebody else is going to claim the right to make it and he’s got the right to make the trial. I say after eight years of this Administration we have just as much unemployment as when we started.

Mr. Doughton: And an enormous debt to boot!

HMJr.: And an enormous debt to boot! We are just sitting here and fiddling and I am just wearing myself out and getting sick. Because why? I can’t see any daylight. I want it for my people, for my children, and your children. I want to see some daylight and I don’t see it…

—Transcript of private meeting at the Treasury Department, May 9, 1939, F.D. Roosevelt Presidential Library

That was in 1939, the third year of FDR’s second term. In other words, 2015.

Want to see what “bold, persistent experimentation” results in? This is what it results in…

When we heard Obama give that speech Thursday casting himself as FDR Redux, we thought it was peculiar. And we think it offers a fantastic opportunity for the Romney campaign to jump all over that gambit and use it to frame the president as Mr. Depression.

No one on the conservative side should use the word “recession” again while Obama is in the White House. The recession is over; we might be entering a new recession as we speak but this was a recession without a recovery.

America has a choice. This can be the 1930’s, which is what Obama is now promising it will be, or it can be the 1920’s.

The 1930’s and early 1940’s, under the kind of “bold, persistent experimentation” Obama is talking about (private sector GDP performance is in green, government spending is in red) – you’ll notice that even back then the idea of spending the country into Greek levels of debt was not seen as a viable policy option and most of what was attempted was an orgy of unfunded government mandates on the private sector, not massive bailouts and takeovers.

Even so, the performance of the economy during that time was disastrous. It shrunk steadily under Hoover – who contrary to how he was painted was hardly a laissez-faire president

Did Hoover really subscribe to a “hands-off-the-economy,” free-market philosophy? His opponent in the 1932 election, Franklin Roosevelt, didn’t think so. During the campaign, Roosevelt blasted Hoover for spending and taxing too much, boosting the national debt, choking off trade, and putting millions on the dole. He accused the president of “reckless and extravagant” spending, of thinking “that we ought to center control of everything in Washington as rapidly as possible,” and of presiding over “the greatest spending administration in peacetime in all of history.” Roosevelt’s running mate, John Nance Garner, charged that Hoover was “leading the country down the path of socialism.”

…and recovered fairly slowly in comparison, though economic growth from 1934-37 was by modern standards quite impressive before FDR’s Second New Deal was launched after his re-election (growth after the Second New Deal was largely fueled by the runup to World War II and it barely kept up with population growth).

The rule, generally, is that coming out of a recession you’ll see recovery rates which mirror the initial decline. Since World War II, for example, this is what most of our recessions and recoveries have looked like compared to this current one (in red, and you can’t miss it)…

And then there was the Depression of 1920, which President Harding charted a completely course out of. Harding cut government and taxes, seeking to free up the American economy from the “bold, persistent experimentation” of Woodrow Wilson’s War Socialism. In that depression, the Commerce Department estimated a real decline in gross national product of 6.9 percent (as opposed to a 5.1 percent decline from the fourth quarter of 2007 to the second quarter of 2009) over the course of an 18 month period.

But Harding – a true laissez-faire president – and his successor Calvin Coolidge had enough faith in the private sector to keep the government out of the economy. The result can be seen in this chart…

…and that was just to 1923. The rest of that decade, until the weight of bad investments and unfavorable world events finally dragged the economy down, was a revelation…

Romney should embrace the 1920’s. He should enumerate the technological advances which reached and penetrated the market in that decade and the increase in the American standard of living which it brought on, and he should frame the choice as whether America wants a wiser, better-managed version of the Roaring Twenties equipped with the lessons of history, or the Great Depression with a bonus of weak and incompetent leadership.

Because that’s what this is. History will repeat itself after this election. The question is which period of history we’re going to repeat.

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