I struggled through watching another round between dumb and dumber, although I’m still not sure which is which. It was over an hour and a half and it was filled with typical political slogans and a lack of insightful questions. I’m sure the questions were screened.
I was surprised by how little time was spent on foreign policy. Overall, I thought Obama came out ahead in the little time they did spend on foreign policy, although Obama avoided answering the question directly about the security in Libya.
For most of the domestic issues, Obama’s answer was to tax the rich. He puts it in a more politically correct way. He says he is asking those at the top to contribute a little more. In reality, he is not asking anything and it has nothing to do with a contribution. When the government sticks a gun at your head, there is no asking or contributing.
Mr. free market Romney (note the sarcasm) repeated several times that he was going to crack down on China for “cheating”. In this debate, he finally came out and said what the punishment will be. He mentioned the word “tariff”, which is a tax on imports. In other words, he wants to make consumer goods coming from China more expensive for Americans. He wants the average American to spend more and get less. It could almost be an anti Walmart slogan.
Of course, there was still no discussion about the Federal Reserve. One man asked about the high cost of living. Both candidates were talking about energy and high gas prices and both were talking about helping the middle class. And there is the elephant in the living room, the Federal Reserve, not even worth a mention. Does it ever occur to anyone that a tripling of the adjusted monetary base over the last 4 years might have something to do with higher prices? No, if you are a debate moderator or a candidate, let’s just pretend that topic doesn’t exist.
There was one good question in the debate and it didn’t come from the audience or the debate moderator. It came from Obama. He wondered how Romney was going to work towards a balanced budget when the only specific cuts he had mentioned were NPR and Planned Parenthood. He said the math didn’t add up.
Obama had a great point there, but unfortunately, nobody followed up. Romney didn’t have a response, or at least one that actually answered the question.
NPR and Planned Parenthood both make up a small fraction of a percent of the total federal budget. It is like trying to drain a swimming pool with an eye dropper. To this point, Romney still has not made any specific proposals for any significant cuts, unless you count Obamacare. There is no possible way that Romney and/or Congress can balance the budget without drastically cutting spending, including spending on so-called entitlements and spending on military. For this reason, part of me wants to see Romney win, just so I can laugh in the face of all of the conservatives who are supporting him. Trillion dollar deficits will continue under a Romney presidency, unless we hit massive price inflation quickly and Congress is forced to make drastic cuts.
Overall, it was more political slogans. No libertarian in his right mind should ever consider voting for either candidate. It is impossible to say which one is worse, but there is no doubt that they are both bad for the cause of liberty.