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Give Obama A Chance

In great things it is enough to have tried......Erasmus

By Alberto Marrero Salas
Published on LatinoLA: June 30, 2009


Give Obama A Chance


I am a Republican. I have never considered the President Obama as the anointed one.

I voted for John McCain mainly due to his leading the charge along with Ted Kennedy on Comprehensive Immigration Reform and his courage while imprisoned in North Vietnam.

I disagree with Obama on Gitmo, abortio , and card check If I have to choose between an American dying in a terrorist attack and water boarding a terrorist my answer would be "Where's the water hose?"

I feel uneasy about his position on Israel. Hamas and Hezbollah are committed to the destruction of the State of Israel. They are not the same and should not be treated as so.

I also don't understand why Republicans opposing Sotomayor are racists and the Democrats that destroyed the Miguel Estrada nomination (an immigrant from Honduras) were not racist. What is good for the goose should be good for the gander.

Either both acts are racist or neither of them are. Can't have it both ways.

I do however give President Obama high marks for not attending the Conference on Racism chaired by Cuba and Algeria (two shining examples of freedom and democracy).

His policies in Iraq and Afghanistan seem to be the right response to the situations. I am thankful to him for not releasing the detainee interrogation pictures that would have put our sons and daughters in the armed forces in harm's way. Keeping Bush appointee Robert Gates at the Defense Department was also a good move.

I also agree with him on health care and there is no doubt that he is an inspiring person. He is like Ronald Reagan, a great communicator.

Obama is our Presiden,t he is the Captain of the ship called America which all of us are on for a ride. To wish Obama to fail is to wish that the country fails. They are at this point inseparable. America cannot triumph if Obama fails. So much for Rush Limbaugh.

What really bothers me is all the whiners that no matter what Obama does Obama is wrong. In this category Sean Hannity stands out. No matter what Obama does Obama is wrong.

Hannity claims that the stock market is stuck. It's not. The market is up over 2000 Dow points since the lows.

There are claims that he is making unemployment worse. Yes there have been job losses but it is the fault of the real estate market bubble bursting and the collapse of the banking system and the Wall Street derivatives that sustained it. Neither George Bush or Obama forced anyone to buy a home that they couldn't afford.

More jobs will be lost in the next few months. Jobs are the last to come back in a recovery.

If any politicians were at fault it would have to be Barney Franks who was the head of the Banking Committee and Maxine Waters who denounced any investigation into minority lending as racist.

In the propping up of AIG, GM and Chrysler the President had little choice. AIG had written insurance to cover a huge number of failed real estate loans that were included in the bundles known as Collaterized Mortgage Obligations or CMOS.

Had the government not propped up AIG the banking system would have collapsed. So the Bush and Obama administrations had no choice. Support AIG or have the country selling pencils and apples at the street corner.

With GM and Chrysler there was also little choice. Cramer from Mad Money once called GM a health provider that happens to sell cars. Last year GM spent more on benefits than it did on steel.
GM and Chrysler were victims of agreements with the unions made back in the late 40's and late 50's when GM sold over 50% of the cars in America. Toyota Honda and Nissan were not in the picture.

The union contracts, the lifetime pensions were unsustainable. (Sounds a lot like California) Now with GM employees having a stake in the company and the reduction of salary and benefits GM can now compete against the Japanese and European car makers.

Had Obama allowed these companies to go in liquidation, hundreds of thousands of jobs would have been lot. Obama had little choice here.

Another complaint is that Obama is telling executives how much they can earn. Well that's easy to fix ... don't take TARP money. If a company is operating with taxpayer funds then the government has a right to control CEO compensation. In Spanish we say "el que le paga al mariachi pide la canci??n." Same should apply to companies that took TARP money.

I am in my fifties. I opened my first brokerage account when I was 18. I worked on Wall Street for 13 years will Merrill Lynch and Prudential Bache. I was there in 1987 when the market fell 25% in one day, I have never ever seen an economic situation like the present one.

We went right to the edge on September 15th of 2008. That night the credit markets froze. The economic system of the world was paralyzed. Had it not been for Ben Bernanke, Paulson and the Federal Reserve meeting before the markets opened we would have face economic Armageddon.

One cannot expect Obama to take the helm during an apocalyptical meltdown of the economy and have the economy fixed in five or six months.

Job losses will continue and real estate values due to job losses will continue to drop.

At some point at the end of this year or at the beginning of next we will se the light at the end of the tunnel.

Obama has been wise in keeping Ben Bernanke, a Bush appointee, at the head of the FED.

Let us all support the President in his battle to better the economy. We went right to the edge of the precipice and so far have avoided falling into the abyss.

No more whining. The election is over. This is our country. This is our President. Let's roll up our sleeves and get America going again.

As they say in Texas, Happy Fourth to you all.

About Alberto Marrero Salas:
Partner NACARA 2000. Worked on Wall Street during 70's and 80's at Merrill and Pru Bache when greed was good (Joe Gecko)
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