The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

September 5, 2012

Your Views

Ray Shamlin

TARBORO — To the Editor:

I am ready for some substantial debate on the issues that are facing this nation. We are not getting that debate. One candidate is ducking and attacking while the other candidate is responding to the dubious attacks. It is time that both candidates got on with the business of what they plan for the future of this great nation of ours.

President Obama must explain to the nation how he plans to energize this nation’s economy. His current campaign tactics of ducking substantial debate on the economy have grown thin. The actions that President Obama has taken to date are not working. The same actions were taken by President Franklin Roosevelt and President Jimmy Carter.

They did not work for them and, of course, they are not working for President Obama.

We are currently in the longest recession since the Great Depression.

Now let us look at the things that have continued to perpetuate the extended recession:

 • An economy that is currently stagnant and has been for most of the past four years. The stagnation has led to a decline in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth levels. The second quarter of 2012 GDP growth level is 1.5 percent.

• The unemployment rate went to 8.3% in February 2009 and has stayed above 8 percent for the last 42 months in spite of the trillions spent by President Obama’s administration and the trillions in new dollars generated by the Federal Reserve System. According to the Congressional Research Service, the GDP would have to grow at 4.5 percent for one year to reduce unemployment by ONE percent.

• During the past four years the population participating in the labor force has dropped from 65.5 percent of the available population to 63.8 percent. During this timeframe six million individuals have dropped out of the labor force. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report projects that Obamacare will drive another 800,000 out of the labor force. Where have these individuals gone? Most are enrolled in entitlement programs stretching our National Debt as we finance  them with borrowed dollars.

• Businesses are sitting on the sidelines because of all the uncertainty caused by the current administration’s policies and procedures. Businesses are uncertain as to how ObamaCare will impact their operations. They are uncertain as to what impact the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act will have on their ability to finance expenditures beyond those they can meet with current cash on hand.

• Every business and individual is concerned about the fiscal cliff that is fast approaching. A fiscal cliff caused by expiration of tax cuts implemented in 2003 and the currently scheduled ambiguous sequestration (cutting) of government spending, especially in the national security/defense area. The CBO projects the failure to extend the tax cuts and/or reduce the sequestration will cause the United States to go into a deep recession or depression.

• Our National Debt is growing daily. It currently exceeds $15.996 trillion and is 104 percent of GDP. We are fast approaching the debt to GDP levels of Japan, Greece, Spain and many European countries where their amount of debt far exceeds their GDP, and as a result has sent them into chaos.

President Obama has offered no plan to address any of the above while his opponent has offered a number of ideas to address each of the above. It is time for President Obama to deliver a detailed plan to address the above. Let us have a debate on what we need to make this nation an economic powerhouse and not a nation divided into many different subgroups.

I am tired of the division that has been generated by this campaign season and the last four years. This division is trying to divide this nation along several different lines. It is not division that has made this nation great. It is the coming together and making this nation a melding pot of different cultures with those cultures melding into one culture, the culture of the United States of America.

Ray Shamlin

Rocky Mount