Saturday, January 9, 2010

#193 Obama's Freshman Year Report Card

After two semesters as President, not counting his stealing an occasional smoke in the little boys' room, here it is: Overall GPA: 2.85 = B-minus. Results certified by the accounting team of Funk and Wagnalls and delivered to my front porch in a sealed mayonnaise jar.

The kid's got a lot of potential. Brainy. Could be a straight-A student, but holding him back from the beginning is his flawed and so-far uncorrected view of what needs to be done in the Middle East, WAR-wise. This near-failing grade is offset, though, by a few achievements on the foreign policy front, and by some laudable accomplishments domestically. Further, in regard to the latter area, Mr. Obama has been allowed to take an "I" in Health-Care Reform, since the project is currently "Incomplete" and will have to be carried over to next semester. Not counted.

I. DOMESTIC POLICY 40% of Grade: 4.25 = A-plus.

--When we disallow the health-care debacle, the President gets the very highest scores for saving the American Economy. The various Stimuli worked. The Job-deficit will mend itself slowly, but meanwhile Obama created through Transportation 2500 highway projects that will eventually employ 260,000. Plus some other things. "Cash for Clunkers," for one, was a blockbuster.

--And even though comprehensive Reform is in limbo, Obama could do his Executive thing and expand Health Insurance for Children (SCHIP) to cover thousands of families in need. and an additional 4 million children.

--Education is a gainer with his $2500 tax-credit for qualified families to send their kids off to college. Authorized expansion of student loans overall.

--Women have acquired greater Socio-Economic parity with Obama-sponsored legislation to make it easier to sue their employers for wage-discrimination.

--On the Environmental front he got the (albeit weak) Cap and Trade thing through a reluctant Congress, too, which will green-up our carbon footprint a bit, though much more needs to be done. In this area also--reversing the predatory policies of Bush/Cheney--the President was able to sign into law the Omnibus PUBLIC LAND Management Act, immediately protecting an additional 2 million acres of federal lands, and, in future, more. Working on National Energy Grid to get us ultimately out of the oil business.

--Finally, Obama is rescuing Science from the Luddite idiocracy of the past administration, if only in tone. We all know the White House has taken a quantum leap in overall I.Q. scores. Symptomatic is the dramatic return of federallly-funded stem-cell research. By Executive order. No more demon-haunted restrictions on money for same. High marks here. (more)

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