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Is Team Obama Taking Over The Economy?

CNBC.com

President Obama's first hundred days are nearly over, and his supporters are already suggesting that he is the greatest president ever. Hmm. Of course, only history will tell. But my single greatest concern remains Mr. Obama's moving the country away from democratic free-market capitalism toward a big government, command-and-control vision of our nation's economy.

What we are witnessing is a triumph of government bureaucrats over entrepreneurs, investors and small businesses.

President Obama has just spent more money in his first hundred days than any president in United States history. In fact, the Pelosi-Reid budget Congress just passed with Obama's blessing doubles the debt in five years, and triples it in ten years. To give some perspective, that's more debt than every president from George Washington to George W. Bush combined. Of course, this will almost certainly lead to much higher tax-rates down the road. Incidentally, all this talk of raising tax rates on investors and businesses, especially offshore companies, robs the incentive power from entrepreneurship.

Over on the banking front, Team Obama is using TARP as a bullying club to force control over the country's financial institutions. There is no exit strategy, no endgame in sight. TARP itself is riddled with criminal enterprise undertones. According to Special Inspector General Barofsky's report released earlier this week, the $700 billion program is "inherently vulnerable to fraud, waste and abuse". The proof is in the pudding: Barofsky says he has already opened up 20 separate criminal investigations and six audits into whether taxpayer dollars are being stolen or wasted. Rest assured that they are, and that more will be revealed on that front.

As for President Obama's cap-and-trade and tax proposal, it represents perhaps the most massive big-government restructuring of our economy in American history. It is a radical, regulatory, command-and-control nightmare. If this tax experiment passes, it will choke and kill the economy.

Universal healthcare is still another illustration of big government intrusion and potential takeover of a 16 percent slice of the economy. It would give government unprecedented power to set prices and allocate resources. And yes, the threat of rationing would be very real.

These are all worrisome threats to our long run economic future.

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Questions? Comments, send your emails to: lkudlow@kudlow.com

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