Spending is estimated to advance another 7.1% in 2018 and will expand to $1.7 trillion total by 2022.
AN OMEN? Apparently, this is not the first time that the Presidential seal has slipped off President Obama's heavily fortified taxpayer-funded limousine. While it's technically a matter of magnetics, the mishap makes you wonder if the slipped seal is a cosmic sign of disapproval from the chauffeured transportation industry. [The divine spirits of American history seem to have a sense of humor, as the seal fell off along Interstate 76 during a fundraising excursion in Philadelphia, site of the signing of the Declaration of Independence (1776) and the Constitutional Convention (1787)].
President Obama's economic policies and stewardship have hurt the small- and medium-sized Main Street America businesses that comprise the bulk of the chauffeured transportation and charter and tour industries. Along with the business travel and hospitality industries that the President impulsively trashed in 2009 for hosting job-creating conventions and conferences. We at LCT have certainly seen the economic damage to operators and coachbuilders up close and personal over the last three years.
Main Street America is not hiring amid fear of all the economic and fiscal uncertainty bred by the Democratic-led spending orgy. President Obama has "owned" this economy since he signed off on his highly partisan failed stimulus package on Feb. 27, 2009. It was supposed to hold unemployment at no more than 8%. Two and half years later, just do the math.
And speaking of Presidential transportation, it should be noted how Obama of late has been bullying charter jet patrons into paying higher taxes.The more relevant question is, should a President who spends millions flying around in a 747 and riding in a Cadillac limousine, courtesy of the taxpaying public, be criticizing the tax levels of charter jet customers, many of whom either run or work for companies trying to invest and create jobs? And who use chauffeured sedans and SUVs to get to and from those jets? Don't forget, the FBO-niche is a key market segment for the chaffeured transportation industry.
With that said, we should continue to support our President in efforts to develop a true economic turnaround. He could still come to his senses and at least support a few policies that will generate lasting economic growth and fiscal stability. There's still "hope" for some "change," however spare it may be, for a spurt in private sector job creation. For now, the limo seal has been recovered faster than the economy.
If the economy doesn't catch up, look for financially battered American voters to seal a new deal in November 2012 that will finally stick. --- Martin Romjue, LCT editor
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