Celebration or commiseration?
November 6, 2012
As you may have heard, there’s an election today that is one, the most significant in your lifetime, and two, the most important ever.
As a partisan myself, I tend to occasionally overemphasize
the importance of the choices we make today, but I’m also old enough to know
that life goes on pretty much the same for most of us no matter who prevails.
It would be nice to think that the BS level will diminish
starting Nov. 7, but I’m also old enough to realize that it won’t. Some people
just can’t restrain willful ignorance.
If Romney wins, will that be better for the maritime
industry? Would President Romney advocate billions for inland waterways infrastructure?
Not if that money has to be borrowed from China, he says, and not if that money
comes from raising taxes. Will President Obama be the champion of the inland
waterways? Probably not. He’s talked about the importance of infrastructure,
but I’ve never heard any references to inland waterways. He
doesn’t seem particularly aware of tugs and barges.
Would President Romney be better for the offshore oil and
gas industry? Maybe, but I don’t think that President Obama has been that bad.
Sure, the moratorium hurt Gulf operators, but any president would have shut
down the Gulf in the aftermath of the BP spill. And the so-called “permatorium”
really wasn’t all that permanent, was it? Also, from what I’ve read, Obama has
personally given the green light to offshore exploration in the Arctic.
Romney says he wants to increase the military budget by a
couple trillion (even though we'd have to borrow for that too), so that
would probably be good for shipyards and boatbuilders that specialize in government
work (but bad for the deficit). Meanwhile, judging from the Navy and Coast Guard activity at Austal, Marinette and Bollinger, things aren’t all that bad.
Overall, the economy seems to be getting better and, baring
unforeseen calamity, probably will continue to improve no matter who’s in the
White House. These things tend to swing on larger timescales than presidential
keep your beer cold because at the end of the day it’s either celebration or
commiseration. And then it’s back to work.