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SENTRY JOURNAL » Cap and Trade, Congress, Healthcare, Immigration, Priorities » Congress Has Priority Issues

Congress Has Priority Issues

Here we are in the mist of one of the toughest economic downturns in the last 30 years and what has our Congress decided to make their priority for the upcoming months.  Let’s see, well nothing that will address the number one concern of the American People…THE ECONOMY!  Instead of tackling the issues of job growth and creating a pro business environment with a cut in the corporate tax rates, the Congress has decided to move in the opposite direction and address such issues as applying more restrictive regulations on Wall Street, passing cap and trade, and the reformation of our current immigration laws that are not enforced.  I find it very strange that they continue to ignore our economic plight.  Throughout the entire healthcare debate and after, Congress has done very little to pivot to the economy even after a continuous flow of bad economic news.  And some of the actions they did take made very little sense.

One example was the second stimulus bill passed; we all know it as the jobs bill.  A number of people have argued that this bill will do very little to create jobs.  One of the main problems with the bill is the tax cuts for small businesses to hire people.  No business will hire new employees unless there is a demand for their product and although there have been signs that consumer spending is increasing; it has not reached a level that would warrant companies to hire many new employees.  Many people also claim that the passage of the healthcare bill is actually a job killer in the private sector.

A week after Obamacare become law a number of companies reported to their shareholders that they would take a hit because of the additional cost of healthcare for employees.  As reported by CNN, “manufacturer John Deere announced Thursday that it expected the company’s expenses to be about $150 million higher than last year.  That came a day after Caterpillar predicted a new cost of $100 million, and two days after AK Steel predicted a charge of $31 million.”

Caterpillar’s Jim Dugan actually stated: “Having an additional cost like this is not great timing.”

So why would Congress pass such a bill knowing how hard it would be on companies during a time when companies are already struggling to keep their heads above water?  I wish I had the answer, but it seems to me the Congress has priority issues.  They have decided that the economy is a much lower priority than things like healthcare, immigration reform, cap and trade, and stopping those evil bankers from ever making a profit again.  One of the first things I was taught in the leadership school I attended while in military was how to prioritize work.

The very first lesson I was taught was how to categorize the work into different levels of priority.  The highest priority was work that had to get done immediately because the impact of not completing it within certain time constraints would affect mission accomplishment.  I would then prioritize work that was in the middle.  This was work that had to get done, but did not have the same time constraints as the highest priority.  Lastly was the work that you would like to address and possibly complete if time and resources were available.  They had little to no time constraints.  When I think back to my training, it’s apparent to me that Congress has this concept backwards.

They have chosen to tackle the priorities that really could have waited.  The only time constraints on the healthcare bill were those placed on it by the President and Congress.  It could have waited until we got our economy back on track.  For some reason the President along with Congress created an illusion that unless healthcare was passed the Earth would stop rotating on its axis and fire and brimstone would rain down from the heavens.

Now once again we find ourselves in the same place.  Congress is tackling Wall Street reform, immigration reform, and cap and trade; all three which if passed more than likely will have a negative effect on the economy and the middle class.  Additionally all three can wait until we take the necessary steps to get our free market system back on track.  Call me stupid, but I think creating a pro business environment to get people back to work and earning a living is a much higher priority than passing environmental legislation that is based off of incomplete science.  Or better yet, instead of reforming immigration, let’s just enforce the laws on the books.  What a novel idea.

What’s worse yet is we have a liberal media that is driving the direction of the debate.  The example of the media driving the debate is that of Arizona passing an immigration law to enforce the current immigration laws of the United States.  The media and pundits have locked onto this and they are now directing the conversation in America.  Now can anyone tell me what is so controversial about a state passing a law that reinforces the immigration laws that are currently on the books?  I mean am I missing something here?  Maybe there’s really nothing controversial about this unless someone chooses to make it controversial.  The one thing I think is truly controversial is why the Congress and President continue to ignore our deficit problem and the economic issues we face.  After all these are the issues that are on the mind of the majority of Americans.  It’s not cap and trade or immigration reform; it’s the economy stupid.

My guess is this is more about the political parties and less about America.  Each party wants to increase their power and voting base and both cap and trade and immigration reform will do exactly that.  They really don’t care about the average taxpayer because to be quite honest it’s not their problem.  Most of them don’t feel the pains of an economy we face every day.  They live in their ivory towers looking down upon the surfs pondering how they can maintain their control of the masses.  What measures can they take to appease the people while at the same time shackle them to their plight.

This is why we must drive the conversation and prioritize things in our lives.  We cannot count on two parties that clearly have their own agenda in mind.  We must stand up and hold to the truth always.  And the truth is an ugly baby, but we can overcome this ugliness because we’re Americans.  We the people must set the agenda, because only through our good actions and character will this nation find its way again.

Liberty forever, liberty for all!


Filed under: Cap and Trade, Congress, Healthcare, Immigration, Priorities

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  • LD Jackson April 26, 2010 at 4:56 AM

    It does seem that Congress needs to take a closer look at their priorities. Instead of focusing on what Americans feel is important, they have chosen instead to focus on the "global issues" that so many believe take precedence over American issues.

    How many times did we hear the American health care system compared to that of other countries? How many times have we heard that America is one of the largest carbon emitting countries and we need to pay our fair share? I am no isolationist, but I think it is high time our government started worrying about things American instead of things global.

  • John Carey April 26, 2010 at 5:09 AM

    I couldn't agree more with you Larry. You have touched on something I too have been thinking about and feel. Our Congress seems to desparately want to show the global community that America is part of the team regardless of what the American people want or think. Congress seems to think they were appoinyed to their positions by the UN and have an obligation to usher in a new era of global cooperation even if it means trampling our Constitution. Thanks for the comments Larry.

  • LD Jackson April 26, 2010 at 5:35 AM

    Maybe they feel they have to apologize for the "sins of America", but I am tired of that attitude. Our country has not been perfect, but it is still the greatest country on this planet. I think our leaders need to start remembering our greatness, instead of regulating us to has-beens.

  • TRESTIN MEACHAM April 26, 2010 at 7:37 AM

    Two things come to mind
    1. They know they will lose the congress soon so they are trying to ram through all their Agenda that the Republicans will never allow.
    2. They want to pass the buck. They know that many of the solutions to our problems are going to hurt. They do not want to be the ones to cut Social Security or Medicare. So, they are letting the problems grow rather than solve it now.

  • Matt April 26, 2010 at 5:50 PM

    Great post John. I will agree, in part, with Trestin in that they do know that time is short. They know that this is the last chance for a long time to pass anything like amnesty or cap and trade. While they are probably also passing the buck, I also think that they don't want the economy to recover.

    I make that assertion due to their behavior. All of their actions have made it more difficult for the economy to create jobs. They have done nothing to create conditions that would would encouraging hiring. Additionally, they have expressed enthusiasm for having more and more people dependent on the government.

    Obama stated that he wants to fundamentally transform America. From all that we know of him, and all of his actions, we can assume that ending the US as an economic giant is part of the plan. He's simply following that course.

  • John Carey April 26, 2010 at 5:58 PM

    Amen to that Larry.