Monday, October 29, 2012

Why I am enthusiastically supporting Obama's reelection

There are several issues which make me a strong Obama supporter.

  1. The national Republican leadership's decision to avoid cooperating on anything that might look good in Obama's record was despicable, and for moral reasons shouldn't be rewarded, but more importantly for practical reasons.  What if Romney's elected and the national Democrats take the same position because it worked so well for the 'Pubs?  Do you want four more years of spiteful gridlock?
  2. Romney's position on global warming (that there is some warming, but it's not clear that it's human caused) shows either a willingness to say anything to win (it is much more comfortable to hear good news), or an inability to evaluate scientific consensus.  Four years of losing progress against global warming would be disastrous, and Romney's lack of ability to evaluate consensus would hurt his decisions in many other areas, too.  Does he go with what he wants to hear (like Bush II did in Iraq) instead of the sensible conclusion?
  3. On the deficit, Republicans have historically been much worse, and the specifics show Obama much more likely to make some progress.  It's impossible to reduce the deficit significantly without raising taxes and reducing military spending.  The non-military discretionary spending is in total much smaller than the deficit.  Romney won't raise taxes, and wants to increase military spending, despite our already spending more than the next ten countries combined (and many of them our close allies!).  If Obama is elected, there will be a grand deal which reduces domestic spending (including several programs I will be sorry to see go, like scientific research and education support) and military spending, and which increases taxes.  If Romney is elected, there will be gridlock or a deal which helps much less.
  4. On both gay marriage and abortion, Obama is for keeping out of our bedrooms; Romney is for more government control over our private lives.
  5. Romney's jingoistic approach to foreign policy scares me.  I think we are in fact much safer and stronger playing nice with other countries instead of trying to be a bully, besides that being the morally correct position.  And I really don't get this "Israel right or wrong" position of the Republicans -- why are they willing to give up US discretion there?
  6. On taxes, there is absolutely no evidence for the "voodoo economics" of reducing taxes on the rich leading to more government revenue.  I'd much prefer to have fair taxes which give everybody equal opportunity, instead of the current leaning entirely to the rich.  A simpler tax system would be nice, but Romney's plan is actually more complex, with various deductions phasing out at higher income.
Some non-issues for me:

  1. The economy will get better under Obama or Romney.  It goes in cycles.  The down was triggered by stupid policies of Republicans, but it was going to happen anyhow.  The bottom was softened somewhat by the big deficit spending led by Obama and the industry bail outs, but it would have bottomed out anyhow.
  2. Obama's not a secret Muslim, and if  he were an open Muslim that wouldn't bother me in the least.  Romney's being a Mormon is similarly a non-issue.
  3. I dislike Obama's continued push for government power vs individual freedom from surveillance, nor do I like his non-judicial slaying of our enemies with drones.  However, I have no reason to believe Romney will be any better.