Obama has been a complete disaster. The only good thing I can say about him is that, while he has expanded wars and started new ones, at least he hasn't started an all-out world war, at least yet. I don't know if we would be able to say the same thing if McCain were president.
Obama has been a disaster for civil liberties and, of course, a disaster on the economic front. The debt has grown a staggering amount on his watch.
I hear Sean Hannity and other conservatives talk about the Obama debt. While Obama certainly is partially responsible, these conservatives are also letting the Republican politicians in DC off the hook. Being apologists for Bush for eight years wasn't enough for them.
It is true that Obama has been president for over 3 years now and the Democrats controlled both the House and Senate for the first two years. But what about the last 14 months, when the Republicans have controlled the majority in the House?
According to the Constitution, all spending bills have to go through the House. The House of Representatives actually holds more power than the president when it comes to spending. The president can only sign or veto a spending bill. The congress can actually override a presidential veto.
If the Republicans in the House really wanted to cut spending, they could do it. If they really wanted a balanced budget, they could do it. If they really wanted smaller government, they could make it happen. The conservative apologist will say, "but then the media would make them look bad". My response is, "so what?" The conservative media, like Sean Hannity, wouldn't attack them for cutting spending (or would he?). If the Republicans are never going to cut any government because they are afraid of what the media will say, then what is the point in electing them?
The Republicans in the House could shrink government simply by refusing to pass any spending bills that would cause a budget deficit. The Republicans could have refused to raise the debt ceiling. If they didn't want to be that drastic, they could have raised the debt ceiling by a much smaller amount.
Do these establishment Republican voters never learn? They think the Republicans are the lesser of evils because they talk about smaller government. If you'll notice, most of these Republican politicians never actually offer any specific cuts of any substance.
I say all of this for a couple of reasons. First, don't be fooled again into voting for Republicans, unless it is someone like Ron Paul who offers specific and drastic cuts (which is rare to find). Second, don't count on anything significant changing if Mitt Romney beats Obama in November.
Regardless of who is president next year and what party controls the House and Senate, it will probably not make much of a difference. There will be short-term pain even if Ron Paul becomes president, simply because of all of the previous malinvestment.
If Romney (or Santorum or Gingrich) were to beat Obama, you probably shouldn't change your economic outlook. They will continue to spend other people's money and they will continue to drive the train over a cliff. Things will only change due to a collapse or a major change in people's thinking, or maybe both. Technology will also play a role in changing things.
When enough people realize that government is not the solution, but the problem, then things will take care of themselves. It will not be necessary to vote for the right person.