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No Matter How Hard He Tries, Obama Will Never Be as Bad as FDR ^ | October 13, 2012 | Daniel J. Mitchell

Posted on 10/13/2012 5:16:01 AM PDT by Kaslin

I’ve explained on many occasions that Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal was bad news for the economy. And the same can be said of Herbert Hoover’s policies, since he also expanded the burden of federal spending, raised tax rates, and increased government intervention.

So when I was specifically asked to take part in a symposium on Barack Obama, Franklin Roosevelt, and the New Deal, I quickly said yes.

I was asked to respond to this question: “Was that an FDR-Sized Stimulus?” Here’s some of what I wrote.

President Obama probably wants to be another FDR, and his policies share an ideological kinship with those that were imposed during the New Deal. But there’s really no comparing the 1930s and today. And that’s a good thing. As explained by Walter Williams and Thomas Sowell, President Roosevelt’s policies are increasingly understood to have had a negative impact on the American economy. …what should have been a routine or even serious recession became the Great Depression.

In other words, my assessment is that Obama is a Mini-Me version of FDR, which is a lot better (or, to be more accurate, less worse) than the real thing.

To be sure, Obama wants higher tax rates, and he has expanded government control over the economy. And the main achievement of his first year was the so-called stimulus, which was based on the same Keynesian theory that a nation can become richer by switching money from one pocket to another. …Obama did get his health plan through Congress, but its costs, fortunately, pale in comparison to Social Security and its $30 trillion long-run deficit. And the Dodd-Frank bailout bill is peanuts compared to all the intervention of Roosevelt’s New Deal. In other words, Obama’s policies have nudged the nation in the wrong direction and slowed economic growth. FDR, by contrast, dramatically expanded the burden of government and managed to keep us in a depression for a decade. So thank goodness Barack Obama is no Franklin Roosevelt.

The last sentence of the excerpt is a perfect summary of my remarks. I think Obama’s policies have been bad for the economy, but he has done far less damage than FDR because his policy mistakes have been much smaller.

“Hey, don’t sell me short. Just wait to see how much havoc I can wreak if reelected!”

Moreover, Obama has never proposed anything as crazy as FDR’s “Economic Bill of Rights.” As I pointed out in my article, this “would have created a massive entitlement state—putting America on a path to becoming a failed European welfare state a couple of decades before European governments made the same mistake.”

On the other hand, subsequent presidents did create that massive entitlement state and Obama added another straw to the camel’s back with Obamacare.

And he is rigidly opposed to the entitlement reforms that would save America from becoming another Greece.

So maybe I didn’t give him enough credit for being as bad as FDR.

P.S. Here’s some 1930s economic humor, and it still applies today. And I also found this cartoon online.


And here’s a good Mini-Me image involving Jimmy Carter.


I wasn’t able to find one of Obama and FDR.

If anybody has the skill to create such an image, please send it my way.

P.P.S. The symposium also features an excellent contribution from Professor Lee Ohanian of UCLA.

And from the left, it’s interesting to see that Dean Baker of the Center for Economic and Policy Research basically agrees with me.

But only in the sense that he also says Obama is a junior-sized version of FDR. Dean actually thinks Obama should have embraced his inner-FDR and wasted even more money on an even bigger so-called stimulus.

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Editorial; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: bho44; fdr; federalspending; presidents
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1 posted on 10/13/2012 5:16:04 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin
No Matter How Hard He Tries, Obama Will Never Be as Bad as FDR

well first off...he will only have 1 term....Unlike FDR being elected to an Imperial 4.

2 posted on 10/13/2012 5:19:57 AM PDT by Vaquero (Don't pick a fight with an old guy. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.)
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To: Kaslin

That’s just a retarded statement.

Who says we don’t have empty heads on the right?

3 posted on 10/13/2012 5:21:27 AM PDT by Hardraade ( (I will fear no muslim))
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To: Kaslin

I don’t agree. FDR wasn’t a muzzie and didn’t set up the caliphate.

4 posted on 10/13/2012 5:23:14 AM PDT by dforest
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To: Hardraade


There is a difference between silver-spoon fed paternalistic liberal elitism (father knows best) and pure evil. It really shouldn’t be that difficult to see.

Even the comparison with FDR, albeit there are similarities in the execution of government works/programs, is counter productive. While some of the functions are similar, the foundations for doing so are radically different.

5 posted on 10/13/2012 5:26:01 AM PDT by Gaffer
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To: Kaslin
President Obama probably wants to be another FDR,...

No, he wants to be another Vidkun Quisling or Benedict Arnold.

6 posted on 10/13/2012 5:31:33 AM PDT by DuncanWaring (The Lord uses the good ones; the bad ones use the Lord.)
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Comment #7 Removed by Moderator

To: Kaslin

It was always perplexing to me the reverence that my parents had for FDR.

My father...a republican...was always averse to criticizing FDR, or any president. When I was complaining about Carter, and or Clintoon, or even said that FDR was wrong, that his policies made the recession of the 30’s worse, etc I was shushed down as though one didn’t speak badly of the president.

My mother...a registered republican but a democrat at heart...would always say you weren’t there and her life during the depression was much worse than my father’s. when I would specifically delineate why FDR was bad for the US.

Obama is just as bad as FDR...maybe worse. The difference is that the media monopoly that existed in the 1930’s....the local newspaper and network radio, severely limited the information getting to the public, the timeliness of news and the near universal tone of reverence for FDR and the contempt of those who opposed his policies.

Now there is the internet, TV, talk radio, and the instant media, so Obama cannot operate in the the same vacuum that FDR did. Obama has tried to to operate in a similar vacuum, but the information back-fill is almost instantaneous and they can’t get a good seal on the bell jar.

8 posted on 10/13/2012 5:39:07 AM PDT by Ouderkirk (Democrats...the party of Slavery, Segregation, Sodomy, and Sedition)
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To: Kaslin

I am no student of FDR, but I suspect that he had a genuine love for our country, we knew his background and values, and he was a natural born citizen. Obama is a Marxist, a believer in black liberation theology, probably an admirer if not a devotee of Islam, a friend of the Muslim Brotherhood, a drug user and a bisexual. I’ll take FDR anyday over this clueless, arrogant thug we have in the WH.

9 posted on 10/13/2012 5:50:31 AM PDT by patriotsblood
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To: patriotsblood

I don’t buy the premise of this article either. Warts and all, FDR loved his country, who took on the Nazis and Imperial Japan knowing full well the stakes. The Bam is a worthless chump who would have negotiated a power sharing deal with Hitler and Tojo for himself and his cronies.

10 posted on 10/13/2012 6:03:16 AM PDT by SpaceBar
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To: Kaslin

All semantics - who’s worse, the one that shoves the knife in or the one who twists it?

11 posted on 10/13/2012 6:03:47 AM PDT by trebb ("If a man will not work, he should not eat" From 2 Thes 3)
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To: Kaslin

Obama is an absolute Islamic supporter, he will do whatever it takes to protect Moslems, to encourage their infiltration into America and the conversion of America into a Sharia state.

Whats so terribly wrong is that Obama was raised to be a socialist AND a Moslem. His grand scheme may not be his but he has been supported by the Communist Party USA and the Muslim Brotherhood equally, and he has made a Devils pact with both, allow him to lead in Hell than to serve in Heaven.

Oh no, there can be no comparison against FDR, turning America into a hybrid Sharia Communist country is far worse.

12 posted on 10/13/2012 6:06:37 AM PDT by Eye of Unk (OPSEC)
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To: Ouderkirk; mickie
"It was always perplexing to me the reverence that my parents had for FDR".

The reverence is still here. Droves of the retirees living in Florida and elsewhere flock to the polls every election and are still voting for Roosevelt as their families did before them.

The recollection I have of my Irish grandma's kitchen is the two framed photographs on the wall above the ice box, FDR and Pope Pius, surrounded by two crumbling palm leaves appropriated from Sunday mass.

I maintain that FDR was the first presidential cult figure, achieving that position mostly through poor education, ignorance and superstitions infecting the electorate at the time.....some of which still lingers today.

Obama now is the second presidential cult leader in our history. JFK came close with the Camelot bunch, etc. but his followers were not uneducated and emotionally crazy.....and he never was a genuine political cult leader.

Obama's cult followers are true believers, their adoration of him based again on political, economic and cultural ignorance, unchecked emotions, unbridled greed and envy, unrealistic hopes and pathetic dependency on a supposed messiah and savior. Many would actually drink the doctored Kool-Ade for him.

The question is not whether "Obama will never be as bad as FDR".....the question is, and should be, "Are the cult followers of Obama more or less dangerous to our society than the cult followers of FDR were and are?"

The answer is obvious.

13 posted on 10/13/2012 6:13:01 AM PDT by MinuteGal
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To: DuncanWaring
Obama would prefer to emulate Joseph Stalin.
14 posted on 10/13/2012 6:18:49 AM PDT by broken_arrow1 (I regret that I have but one life to give for my country - Nathan Hale "Patriot")
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To: Vaquero

Exactly. He will never get the four terms FDR got. And remember, these policies were nothing but an extension of Hoover’s policies. So we basically got 5 terms of this garbage. Plus IRRC i believe toward the end of FDR’s reign he slowly lost the academic members of his administration and brought in business men for the war machine, so the war on business stopped. Like sowell said: WW2 didnt end the depression; it ended the New Deal. One thing ill give FDR over Obama; he didnt embrace the global threat at the time like obama is doing which makes obama worse in the long run.

15 posted on 10/13/2012 6:20:52 AM PDT by CommieCutter
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To: Ouderkirk

When my mother, born in 1917, moved out of Detroit to Plymouth 29 years ago, she refused to look at a house on Roosevelt Street.
FDR may have been worse economically, but he didn’t carry the “hate America” baggage too. In multiple ways, Obama is purposely laying siege to the US from within.

16 posted on 10/13/2012 6:24:46 AM PDT by stayathomemom (Beware of kittens modifying your posts.)
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To: Kaslin
No Matter How Hard He Tries, Obama Will Never Be as Bad as FDR

Parsing again.

This is true only in the sense that Obama isn't as bad as FDR.


As much as I dislike FDR I never thought his mission was to destroy the USA and "fundamentally change" it.

But that is precisely the goal that motivates Obama and what his administration is working so hard to accomplish.

He has visions of creating some sort of worldwide Islamo-Commie-Fascist Caliphate with himself as Emporer and the wealth and power supplied by what is left of the American economic engine.

17 posted on 10/13/2012 6:35:09 AM PDT by Iron Munro (Psalm 109:8 "Let his days be few, and let another take his office.")
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To: Kaslin

FDR was a real Constitution shredder! BTW, so was Lincoln.

18 posted on 10/13/2012 6:38:43 AM PDT by New Jersey Realist (America: home of the free because of the brave)
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To: SpaceBar
Warts and all, FDR loved his country, who took on the Nazis and Imperial Japan...

And he beat both enemies - crushed them actually - in less than four years. Compare that to the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

19 posted on 10/13/2012 6:55:33 AM PDT by Leaning Right
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To: broken_arrow1

“All the above”.

I’m quite certain that privately he looks fondly on the great mass-murderers of history.

20 posted on 10/13/2012 7:14:01 AM PDT by DuncanWaring (The Lord uses the good ones; the bad ones use the Lord.)
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