Saturday, April 30, 2011

Weekly Address: Ending Taxpayer Subsidies for Oil Companies

As oil and gas companies make tens of billions in profits and the government scours the budget for savings, President Barack Obama called on Congress to stop handing them $4 billion annually in taxpayer subsidies. America’s oil production last year reached its highest level since 2003, but we need to invest in the energy of the future, instead of subsidizing the energy of the past.


After the worst recession since the Great Depression, our economy is growing again, and we’ve gained almost 2 million private sector jobs over the last 13 months. But I also know that a lot of folks aren’t feeling as positive as some of those statistics might suggest. It’s still too hard to find a job. And even if you have a job, chances are you’re having a tougher time paying the rising costs of everything from groceries to gas. In some places, gas is now more than $4 a gallon, meaning that you could be paying upwards of $50 or $60 to fill up your tank.

Of course, while rising gas prices mean real pain for our families at the pump, they also mean bigger profits for oil companies. This week, the largest oil companies announced that they’d made more than $25 billion in the first few months of 2011 – up about 30 percent from last year.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Advance Estimate of GDP for the First Quarter of 2011

Today’s report shows that the economy posted the seventh straight quarter of positive growth, as real GDP, the total amount of goods and services produced in the country, grew at a 1.8 percent annual rate in the first quarter of this year. While the continued expansion is encouraging, clearly, faster growth is needed to replace the jobs lost in the downturn.

Some key components of GDP continued to expand in the first quarter. Consumer spending rose 2.7 percent at an annual rate, boosted by a 2.9 percent increase in real disposable income that was due in part to the cut in payroll taxes. Equipment and software investment increased 11.6 percent. Spending components that subtracted from GDP included construction of nonresidential structures (-21.7 percent), federal spending (-7.9 percent), and state and local government spending (-3.3 percent). On the production side, goods production rose at a 9.3 percent, roughly consistent with the previously-reported 9.1 percent increase in manufacturing industrial production.

These data indicate that the measures put in place by this Administration – such as the payroll tax cut and business incentives for investment – are helping to foster growth. We will continue to work with Congress to find ways to reduce spending, so that we can live within our means and focus on the investments that are most likely to help grow our economy and create jobs – investments in education, infrastructure, and clean energy.



from http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2011/04/28/advance-estimate-gdp-first-quarter-2011

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Stopping Oil Market Fraud, Beginning a Clean Energy Future

In his weekly address, President Obama laid out his plans to address rising gas prices over the short and the long term.  While there is no silver bullet to bring down prices right away, there are a few things we can do.  This week, the Attorney General launched a task force dedicated to rooting out fraud or manipulations in the oil markets.  The President called for finally ending the $4 billion in taxpayer money that the oil and gas companies receive annually.  And, we need to continue safe, responsible production of oil at home.  But in the long term, we need to invest in clean, renewable energy.  That is why the President strongly disagrees with a proposal in Congress that cuts our investments in clean energy by 70 percent.


Instead of subsidizing yesterday’s energy sources, we need to invest in tomorrow’s. We need to invest in clean, renewable energy. In the long term, that’s the answer. That’s the key to helping families at the pump and reducing our dependence on foreign oil. We can see that promise already. Thanks to an historic agreement we secured with all the major auto companies, we’re raising the fuel economy of cars and trucks in America, using hybrid technology and other advances. As a result, if you buy a new car in the next few years, the better gas mileage is going to save you about $3,000 at the pump.

But we need to do more. We need to harness the potential I’ve seen at promising start-ups and innovative clean energy companies across America. And that’s at the heart of a debate we’re having right now in Washington about the budget.

Both Democrats and Republicans believe we need to reduce the deficit. That’s where we agree. The question we’re debating is how we do it. I’ve proposed a balanced approach that cuts spending while still investing in things like education and clean energy that are so critical to creating jobs and opportunities for the middle class. It’s a simple idea: we need to live within our means while at the same time investing in our future.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

President Barack Obama on Restoring Fiscal Responsibility and Reduce the US Deficit

Weekly Address: “We Can Live Within Our Means and Live Up to the Values We Share as Americans”

In his weekly address, President Barack Obama said that to restore fiscal responsibility, we all need to share in the sacrifice – but we don’t have to sacrifice the America we believe in. Earlier this week, the President proposed a balanced approach to cut the deficit, which matches the $4 trillion in deficit reduction put forward by House Republicans’ plan. The President’s proposal does this by combing the entire budget for savings and asking everyone to do their part. The Republican plan, though, would end Medicare as we know it and make drastic cuts to education, infrastructure and clean energy, while giving away $1 trillion in tax breaks to the wealthiest two percent.


That’s why I’ve proposed a balanced approach that matches that $4 trillion in deficit reduction. It’s an approach that combs the entire budget for savings, and asks everyone to do their part. And I’ve called on Democrats and Republicans to join me in this effort – to put aside their differences to help America meet this challenge. That’s how we’ve balanced our budget before, and it’s how we’ll succeed again.

We’ll build on the savings we made from last week’s bipartisan budget agreement, while protecting the job-creating investments that are critical to our future.

We’ll find additional savings in our defense budget. Over the last two years, the Secretary of Defense has taken on wasteful spending that does nothing to protect our troops or our nation, saving $400 billion in current and future spending. I believe we can do that again.

We’ll reduce health care spending, and strengthen Medicare and Medicaid through common-sense reforms that will get rid of wasteful subsidies and increase efficiency.

We’ll reduce spending in our tax code with tax reform that’s fair and simple – so that the amount of taxes you pay doesn’t depend on how clever an accountant you can afford. And we should end the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, too. Because people like me don’t need another tax cut.
barack obama 2012 election

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Pres. Barack Obama on US Debt Crisis: We Can Solve This

Today, President Barack Obama gave a speech at the George Washington University and laid out his plan for a balanced approach to achieve $4 trillion in deficit reduction over twelve years, based on the values of shared responsibility and shared prosperity. The President Obama's approach borrows from the Bipartisan Fiscal Commission and builds on $1 trillion in deficit reductions in the President Obama's 2012 budget.



In his speech, the President Obama stressed the importance working together to reduce the deficit while continuing to make key investments in our future and protecting our core values as a nation:
But there’s always been another thread running through our history – a belief that we’re all connected, and that there are some things we can only do together, as a nation. We believe, in the words of our first Republican President, Abraham Lincoln, that through government, we should do together what we cannot do as well for ourselves.

And so we’ve built a strong military to keep us secure, and public schools and universities to educate our citizens. We’ve laid down railroads and highways to facilitate travel and commerce. We’ve supported the work of scientists and researchers whose discoveries have saved lives, unleashed repeated technological revolutions, and led to countless new jobs and entire new industries. Each of us has benefited from these investments, and we’re a more prosperous country as a result.

Part of this American belief that we’re all connected also expresses itself in a conviction that each one of us deserves some basic measure of security and dignity. We recognize that no matter how responsibly we live our lives, hard times or bad luck, a crippling illness or a layoff may strike any one of us. “There but for the grace of God go I,” we say to ourselves. And so we contribute to programs like Medicare and Social Security, which guarantee us health care and a measure of basic income after a lifetime of hard work; unemployment insurance, which protects us against unexpected job loss; and Medicaid, which provides care for millions of seniors in nursing homes, poor children, those with disabilities. We’re a better country because of these commitments. I’ll go further. We would not be a great country without those commitments.
Watch President Obama's full speech: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xNDW6OHKqGQ
Learn more about President Obama's 2012 budget: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2011/04/13/president-obama-s-framework-4-trillion-deficit-reduction

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Join Forces with Michelle Obama & The USO to Thank Military Families




First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden have met with military families, learned about their successes and challenges and made it their priority to support them. Send a message of thanks and support to a military family today...

http://joiningforces.uso.org/share-message?sc=ftf-fb



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Saturday, April 9, 2011

President Obama on the Budget Compromise to Avoid a Government Shutdown

Weekly Address: President Obama on the Budget Compromise to Avoid a Government Shutdown

After weeks of negotiations, President Obama and leaders from both the Democratic and Republican parties in Congress found common ground in an agreement about the United States' budget. This means the government will remain open to serve the public, including small businesses who need need loans to grow, families who've applied for mortgages and others who are visiting national parks and museums. It also means that hundreds of thousands of Americans - including brave men and women in uniform - will get paychecks on time.

In his Weekly Address, the President discusses the importance of the bipartisan budget agreement that represents both a significant investment in the United States' future - and the largest annual spending cut in our history.


This is an agreement to invest in our country’s future while making the largest annual spending cut in our history. Like any compromise, this required everyone to give ground on issues that were important to them. I certainly did. Some of the cuts we agreed to will be painful – programs people rely on will be cut back; needed infrastructure projects will be delayed. And I would not have made these cuts in better circumstances. But we also prevented this important debate from being overtaken by politics and unrelated disagreements on social issues. And beginning to live within our means is the only way to protect the investments that will help America compete for new jobs – investments in our kids’ education and student loans; in clean energy and life-saving medical research. - President Barack Obama

Monday, April 4, 2011

President Barack Obama announces 2012 Re-Election Bid in Web Video

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Today, we are filing papers to launch our 2012 campaign.

We're doing this now because the politics we believe in does not start with expensive TV ads or extravaganzas, but with you -- with people organizing block-by-block, talking to neighbors, co-workers, and friends. And that kind of campaign takes time to build.

So even though I'm focused on the job you elected me to do, and the race may not reach full speed for a year or more, the work of laying the foundation for our campaign must start today.

We've always known that lasting change wouldn't come quickly or easily. It never does. But as my administration and folks across the country fight to protect the progress we've made -- and make more -- we also need to begin mobilizing for 2012, long before the time comes for me to begin campaigning in earnest.

As we take this step, I'd like to share a video that features some folks like you who are helping to lead the way on this journey. Please take a moment to watch:





In the coming days, supporters like you will begin forging a new organization that we'll build together in cities and towns across the country. And I'll need you to help shape our plan as we create a campaign that's farther reaching, more focused, and more innovative than anything we've built before.

We'll start by doing something unprecedented: coordinating millions of one-on-one conversations between supporters across every single state, reconnecting old friends, inspiring new ones to join the cause, and readying ourselves for next year's fight.

This will be my final campaign, at least as a candidate. But the cause of making a lasting difference for our families, our communities, and our country has never been about one person. And it will succeed only if we work together.

There will be much more to come as the race unfolds. Today, simply let us know you're in to help us begin, and then spread the word:

http://my.barackobama.com/2012

Thank you,

Barack

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Sunday, April 3, 2011

President Obama on American Dependence on Foreign Oil and Our Energy Future

President Barack Obama delivers weekly address
from UPS customer center
Weekly Address: Energy Security Can Only Come If We Invest in Cleaner Fuels and Greater Efficiency

In his weekly address, President Barack Obama discussed his strategy to reduce our dependence on foreign oil and secure our nation’s energy future. When the President Obama was elected, America imported eleven million barrels of oil a day. This week he announced a bold, but achievable goal of cutting this number by one-third by 2025.

To achieve this goal we will increase responsible domestic oil and gas development in the short term, while also increasing efficiency and harnessing new technologies including biofuels, natural gas, and advanced batteries. And through the Clean Fleets Partnership, large companies, such as UPS, FedEx, AT&T, Verizon, and PepsiCo, will help boost the market for clean fuels by switching their fleets over to electric and alternative vehicles.


quick points from President Barack Obama's weekly address:
  • This week, I released a Blueprint for a Secure Energy Future. It’s a strategy to reduce the oil we import from around the world, and to make our economy stronger at home. Part of this strategy involves increasing our oil exploration right here in America. In fact, our oil production last year reached its highest level since 2003, and we want to encourage more safe, responsible drilling where we can.
  • To help jumpstart this market, the federal government has doubled the number of clean energy vehicles that we have in our fleet. In the next few years, we’re going to switch the entire fleet over. And I’m here at UPS because it’s not just the government getting in on the action. Companies like UPS, FedEx, AT&T, Verizon, and PepsiCo – firms with some of the largest fleets in the country – are switching to more efficient vehicles. And through our Clean Fleets Partnership, driven not by government, but by business, more companies are going to be switching to electric and alternative vehicles, too – not out of the goodness of their hearts, but because it’s good for their bottom lines.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

American Unemployment At New Low - 8.8% With 230 000 Private Sector Jobs in March

“I will not be satisfied
until every American
who wants a good job
can find one”
-Pres.Obama
Figures released by the U.S. Labor Department, this morning, show that unemployment has fallen to 8.8%. Speaking earlier today, President Obama said:
Nearly two years after one of the worst recessions we’ve ever seen, our economy is showing signs of real strength. Today we learned that we added 230,000 private sector jobs last month. That makes 1.8 million private sector jobs created in the last thirteen months. And the unemployment rate has now fallen a full point in the last four months. The last time that happened was the recovery of 1984.

Now, despite this good news, we still have plenty of work to do. There are still millions of Americans looking for a job that pays the bills. I know there’s a lot going on in the world, and the news is filled with images of the Middle East and Japan, but you should know that keeping the economy growing and making sure jobs are available is the first thing I think about when I wake up every morning. It’s the last thing I think about when I go to bed each night. And I will not be satisfied until every American who wants a good job can find one; until every family gets a shot at the American Dream. That’s our North Star. That’s what we’re fighting for.

The March Employment Situation: 216,000 Jobs Gained

Today, the U.S. Labor Department announced that our economy added 216,000 jobs in March, marking 13 consecutive months of growth and totaling more than 1.8 million jobs created over that same period. The unemployment rate also fell to 8.8 percent, which is a full percentage point drop during the past four months and the steepest decline since 1984 over that same period.

Additionally, the Labor Department revised upward the number of jobs created during the previous two months, estimating that the private sector grew by 94,000 in January (from 68,000) and by 240,000 in February (from 222,000).

This news represents a positive trend that America’s economy is growing and creating jobs, but far too many people are still out of work and the pace of the recovery remains too slow. The policies enacted by President Obama over the past two years have created steady economic growth, a drastic change from the economy he inherited, which was shedding hundreds of thousands of jobs per month.

The President will continue supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses, collaborating with job creators to eliminate barriers to hiring, and fighting for families struggling to make ends meet.
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