What is the legacy left behind by Obama and his administration after eight years in office? Well, that greatly depends on who you ask.
First of all, it shouldn’t be too surprising that someone that voted for, and supported, Obama while he was in office will tend to notice the things he did that they feel are a good thing. By equal measure it should be expected that those that voted against Obama, or abstained from voting and remained critical of him and his administration for the last eight years, would be the ones that take note of the things he and his administration did that they don’t like. These things are absolutely to be expected.
Something that is less expected that might be able to provide a fair measure of Obama’s legacy is a certain Huffington Post poll taken after his last State of the Union address. Surprisingly, even for a propaganda outlet that has carried water for the democrats like the Huffington Post preforms a poll in which they asked Americans how they felt about issues like the economy, international relations, and “their life” after Obama took office, the results are beyond what would be considered reasonable expectation. They are unbelievable.
After all, while there is no way to quantify whether or not someone should feel that their life has improved since Obama has been in office, can’t we actually measure whether or not the economy has done so? And if we can, then why don’t people agree? And why is the single most determining factor for their disagreements not age, race, or economic status, but rather their political affiliation?
The answer to why Democrats feel so differently about Obama’s legacy than Republicans or Independents do might actually be what Obama’s legacy is in the first place. So, let’s look at some of the questions that HuffPo asked and the answers that they got, as broken down by political affiliation.
All the questions asked were comparative, comparing before and after Obama, with the option of choosing one of three answers, worse, about the same, or better. When asked how they felt about their own lives now since Obama had been elected 51% of democrats said they felt their life had improved, only 9% of republicans agreed, along with 23% of independents. Since we can’t measure whether or not these people’s lives, have or haven’t improved under the Obama administration, it’s only worth mentioning for comparison with later answers.
When asked if they felt that since Obama’s election the “economy had improved”, an overwhelming 71% of democrats said yes, they felt the economy had improved. Republicans and independents were not so optimistic with 15% and 33% respectively. Now things get a little more interesting since this is an issue that we can examine scientifically, of course people are still free to “feel” that the economy has or has not improved no matter what the data shows, but for some of us reality is still important. So, when it comes to the economy, what can be used to measure its health? Several factors, as we will take a look at, but the one that really hits home is the average household income.
Under the Obama administration, the US average household income has decreased when adjusted for inflation. Meaning that the average American family has less spending power and less resources available to them now than eight years ago. About $2,000 less annually. That’s a big hit for families to take, big enough you might think that Democrats would notice it. But I guess when your voter constituency eats off of food stamps (the amount of Americans on food stamps is up 36% under Obama, that’s 1 out of every 5 Americans) and gets free health care, what’s $2,000 a year?
Obama has been known to state that under his beneficent rule America’s unemployment has been lowered (presumably by his policies) to 4.7 percent, which isn’t a bad number. But, is that an accurate picture of America’s employment? Of course not. The unemployment rate is based on the number of unemployment insurance claims filed, it does not account for those that have been unemployed so long that they can no longer collect, those that chose not to file, the “under employed”, and those that simply aren’t participating in the work force by choice (which is worth looking at since these people would either be living off crime or tax dollars, or both).
A more accurate picture of the American economy would show that since Obama took office the labor participation rate has fallen by over 3%. 3% might seem like a small amount, but take into consideration that only 1% was lost during the official recession.
How about home ownership? Home ownership is down by over 4% since Obama took office. That’s the lowest in over half a century. And this after $275 Billion in housing market bailouts. Not exactly money well spent.
The cherry on top of Obama’s economic legacy is the $9 Trillion and change that was added to the national debt while he was in office. Nearly $1 Trillion of which was due to policies he directly pushed. Those numbers are so large that they are mentally numbing, it’s impossible to fathom what 9 trillion anything would look like. Just to give an idea, 1 trillion is 1,000 billion, which is 1,000 million, which is 1,000 thousand. Like I said, it’s mentally numbing.
But what about relations between parties? How have things changed since Obama’s election in relation to how democrats and republicans see each other and how they relate to each other? Well, like most issues, the answer will likely depend on the political affiliation of the person being asked. Democrats were 6 times more likely to feel that relations had improved under Obama.
That being said, over 60% of democrats still noticed that relations between parties had deteriorated. Of course, that’s all the fault of white racism. It has nothing to do with the democrats continuing to push ultra-polarizing issues like allowing grown men that think they are women, or claim to think they are women (I’m not sure which is worse) to use the same public restrooms as girls. And this while they are pushing the narrative of rape culture.
And what is the result of this race-baiting and hate-labeling that leads to greater polarization? Well, in many cases often ignored or lied about in the mainstream media, the result is violent attacks by the Democrats on Republicans. Most notably would be the recent attacks on Trump supporters outside of Trump rallies, or even more recently, the riots in response to Trump’s election. Democrats take about as much notice of the violence their party is responsible for as they do the economic results of their policies. In fact, they take even less responsibility.
It would be naïve to think that the nation’s economy and partisan relationships are all that Obama has changed before he leaves office. His legacy also extends to foreign relations and this nation’s global standing. The Huffington Post didn’t forget about this, when they asked what the result of Obama’s reign had been on this country’s international standing, 45% of Democrats said that they though “American had become stronger internationally” since Obama. Compare that to 5% of Republicans that felt the same way. So how could we judge whether or not America is “stronger internationally”? It’s impossible to know what The Huffington Post meant by internationally strong, but a reasonable person could conclude that national security would be a good measure of international strength.
How secure is America now that Obama has been in office eight years? Depending on how you categorize them, it is accurate to say that America has suffered an average one Islamic terror attack involving foreigners for each year Obama has been in office. Now of course, Obama doesn’t consider it an act of terror when a devout Muslim shoots and kills US service men in a recruitment office in Littlerock, AR, or when a Muslim couple shots their co-workers and police in San Bernardino.
Then there’s Benghazi, where an American embassy was attacked, resulting in the death of four Americans, on American soil, after repeated requests for additional security were ignored. So how safe can his country be from Islamic terrorism when Obama refuses to say the phrase “Islamic terror”, calls the San Bernardino shooting “work place violence”, and denies an American embassy the security they needed when being ambushed by blatantly ideologically-driven Muslim terrorists?
Islamic terrorism isn’t the only threat that should be assessed when considering America’s security, there are after all other countries to consider. So how has our security fared in relation to other nations since Obama took office? Well, North Korea managed to get nuclear capabilities under Obama. Officially reported Chinese military spending has more than doubled since Obama took office, with experts warning that actual spending could be much higher.
Obama illegally gave Iran, a country that sponsors Islamic terror and threatens American allies like Israel, $1.7 billion in cash. Perhaps most alarming is the proxy war with Russia that Obama has been waging in Syria. All of this while the US military is hemorrhaging troops and weapons so fast under Obama that according to a 2015 report by the Heritage Foundation, America’s military has become “marginally able”, and is not strong enough to fight a two front war.
So, what legacy is Obama leaving this country after eight years in office?
Aside from a demonstratively weakened economy, diminished fighting capacity while facing growing terror threats and potential world war, he seems to have left us with nearly 1/3 of our population fully convinced otherwise. Many dug-in Democrats are unshakable in their faith that Obama has turned the economy around, brought our nation together, and strengthened our international standing.
That is quite an accomplishment, and it would be even if things had remained the same, let alone with every measurable aspect of the Huffington Post’s poll being the opposite of what democrats think. It’s pretty amazing when you stop to think about it, alarming, but amazing. The usual strategy in politics would be to blame the other party or your predecessor for all the problems you caused while in office, that alone could be a hard sell with the numbers we have from the Obama years. But instead, he has successfully convinced a large portion of the US population, a population that has more access to information than ever before, that the problems he caused aren’t real, that he fixed them, and that things are good.
Some of these supporters will attack you if you voice a dissenting opinion or offer support for another party. That’s a whole new trick, and that is Obama’s greatest legacy…a large portion of this country so ill-informed that it borders on delusion, violent when faced with disagreement, self-righteous and fully convinced that the change they hoped for came in the form of eight years under Obama despite all evidence to the contrary. Not bad if you are looking to start a communist dictatorship.
And perhaps, the results of Obama’s poll are in fact indicative more than anything of the ideology he has passed on. Rather than making a quantifiable positive impression on the economy, policy, or the security of our nation, Obama has made clear the kind of emotional ties that Democrats have to their leaders. Time and time again during this recent election, we were told by pundits that Hillary had a better chance because Democrats always stick behind their candidate. Obama’s very rhetoric on which he ran was that of “hope” and “change”, very simple, positive-sounding concepts that drove one of the most successful presidential campaigns in US history. He was pictured in famous campaign posters looking like a romanticized Marxist revolutionary, and perhaps that is a bit like what he is.
In essence, it is possible that his supporters view his presidency as successful not because of what Obama did, but because of what he stood for. The rhetoric he used about opportunity, equality, and die-hard political correctness is what gives people who feel so strongly about these ideals the impression that he has improved the country. Conservatives feel quite differently, but Obama has, in the minds of his supporters, forged a wide path for everything the left adores: cultural Marxist thought crime standards for free speech and relations between people of different belief systems.
And this will be Obama’s legacy. The ideas he validated in people’s heads, the supposed progress he made by being a symbol rather than an effective leader. He will most likely go down in history this way, regardless of what the data shows us. And there’s not much we can do about that, because that’s how Democrats think. Just as the party that founded the KKK and opposed women’s suffrage is now the party of race equality and feminism, they will never back down from viewing their hero Marxist president as a success.
With that much denial of reality, there is simply not very much we can do about it.