Introducing The Next Gen Data Card
Use it to fight for the future with facts
Each week as part of our Next Generation Initiative, I will assess the current issues to inspire your thought and engagement, and to call you to action for our future generations. This week, the big news is new beginnings in Washington.
We embarked upon the second term of President Barack Hussein Obama and opened the 113th Congress. These early days will provide a clear vision as to legislative priorities and the direction this country will take under these elected officials.To put the monumental challenges ahead of them into perspective, I have the pleasure to introduce you to the Next Generation Data Card.
Click here to go to the download and print the Next Generation Data Card
As a member of Congress, I had our staff develop this simple card of several economic indicators to give constituents an objective, comparative analysis. Now Next Generation is updating this card to show you where America was in January 2009 and where we are currently.
We will update the card monthly and challenge you to carry it for reference and discussion. Of course, if I am at an event and ask people to show me the data card, those without it will have to do 20 push-ups, so you better download your copy of the card here right now!
The bottom line of the card is that facts do not lie. Crafty people can say anything in a speech, but we will arm you with the truth so you can stand up for our future.
Empty Inaugural Words
Speaking of crafty speeches, on Monday I read the transcript of President Obama’s inaugural address. I have found it better to read the words and not sit there staring at the TV just to be enraptured.As we prepare to launch our “Next Generation Today” show on Feb. 4, the critical theme will be “the next 100 days for the Next Generation,” and I read Obama’s words through that filter. I was struck by the fact that he did not talk about our growing debt and government spending.If there is one glaring item that threatens our children’s future, it is our national debt. The president only mentioned our deficit once, and that was when Obama paid lip service to making “the hard choices to reduce the cost of health care and the size of our deficit.”Now, I am not a rocket scientist, but back in 2010 when he signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the law was estimated to cost the American people $940 billion. That cost later skyrocketed to $1.7 trillion, and several new taxes from the law just hit all Americans this January. (Notice I said “all Americans.”)
Our deficits in the era of Obama have been $1.42 trillion, $1.3 trillion, $1.29 trillion and $1.1 trillion. We are on track for a fifth straight year of $1 trillion-plus deficits – the difference between revenue flowing into the government and government spending. We are now borrowing 46 cents on every dollar spent.
In his inaugural address, Obama did not mention how we will curtail spending.
On the other hand, average gasoline prices have gone from $1.84 in January 2009 to $3.30 in January 2013, and Obama said in his address, “We will respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and grandchildren.”
When Moms cannot afford to take their kids to soccer or lacrosse practice because of rising energy costs, that is a betrayal.
As a young fella tanking up my Dad’s car on our assigned day during the Saudi oil embargo, I remember being told that government would create a Department of Energy to make us energy independent. Yeah, exactly what I’m thinking.
We sent $2 billion to Brazil for offshore oil exploration; we wasted taxpayer dollars on green energy boondoggles (Solyndra); we are sending jobs overseas for wind blades and solar panels, and anyone remember the Keystone XL oil pipeline?
We are betraying our children.
On the defense front, Obama said “a decade of war is now ending” and “we will defend our people and uphold our values through strength of arms.” But recent and current events suggest otherwise.
Last September we lost a U.S. ambassador, a State Department official and two former Navy SEALS in Benghazi, Libya. We just learned that radical Islamic terrorists murdered three Americans of the 10 they took hostage at a gas plant in Algeria. No one asked radical Islamists about an end to fighting, and sadly, they do get a vote.
“Strength of arms” – those Obama inaugural words are in contrast to the threat of sequestered defense spending, which would so promote a decline in American military strength that Obama-appointed Defense Secretary Leon Panetta spoke against it.
We need a loyal opposition that will make a stand in the political arena, and the GOP must not continue to acquiesce under perceived media pressure.
Permission to Speak Freely
Speaking of which, I do find reprehensible the comments of CBS news political director John Dickerson about going for the throat and pulverizing the Republican Party. This after Obama stated in his inaugural speech, “We cannot mistake absolutism for principle, or substitute spectacle for politics, or treat name-calling as reasoned debate.”I thought we were supposed to have a more civil discourse. Imagine if a conservative news director had said the same thing!Or even worse, look at the backlash golfer Phil Mickelson took for stating exactly what many are thinking – that they may have to make “drastic changes” because of rising taxes. Furthermore, doesn’t Mickelson have the unalienable right to free speech and to petition the government for a redress of grievances?The next generation requires an objective media that reports the facts and gives them the freedom to articulate their pain under the weight of expansive government intrusion and ineffective policies.
So we shall be watching these next 100 days for policies that promote the economic, energy and national security interests for our next generation. When we do not see effective policies, we will engage you and challenge you to stand up for the future.
As a great American, Gene Kranz once stated, “failure is not an option.”
Steadfast and Loyal,
Allen B. West
TO READ THE REST OF THE NEWSLETTER FROM ALLEN WEST
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