Barack Obama beats Vladimir Putin where it counts: Economics

Some people say that if you fight a war on your own soil, you’re  losing. If that’s true, then for Russian President Vladimir Putin the war for dominance is one that he is surely losing on a less discussed frontier: economics. 

When comparing two presidents, such as President Barack Obama and Putin, looking at their actions in context is key. It is too easy to blame Obama for the economic woes of the 2008 crash even though he inherited it from his predecessor due to irreversible overspending both domestically and abroad.

The huge debt, when paired with the deregulation of the housing market, led to an ill prepared government paired with an economy set to crash. This hamstrung Obama’s presidential legacy due to his obligation to deal with these problems rather than make proactive changes to better the country.

 What makes Obama better than Putin is how his policy impacted the nation. The stimulus package was what the nation needed at the time and created jobs at a faster rate than in the 1990s. 

Meanwhile, Putin’s international policy has made severe costs to his country’s economic problems. Without a diverse economy, the sanctions after the invasion of Crimea have been bruising the Russian economy.

Furthermore, rather than looking back and trying to invest in ways to improve the economy, domestically, Putin doubled down on his military efforts in backing Bashar Al-Assad and Iran in its control over Syria.

Now keeping face only through military accomplishments, Putin’s success in Syria will probably be a necessary but insufficient burden to being seen favorably by his people.

Ultimately, a nation’s economy is the core of its power. The Soviet Union collapsed due to economic deficiencies, and in the modern world, money is the representation of resources. By properly investing in itself, I think the U.S. is set to be above Russia in economic and military prowess for a long time.

Many say that Obama’s accomplishments as commander-in-chief are lacking. The Washington Free Beacon has a compilation video of quotes from Obama saying, “I promised to end the war in Iraq, and we did,” while later citing his reluctance to accept responsibility for this. 

While one can say this is a sign of bad leadership, there is some truth to the ad against Obama. People did not vote for Sen. John McCain in 2008 who wanted to continue the war in Iraq, nor did they vote for Mitt Romney, who had a very confrontational foreign policy against America’s enemies.

Obama fit Americans better than his war hawk rivals, which is how I see Putin.