Sunday, February 14 , 2016, 6:04 am | Fair 55º

Jacques Habra: Obama Won the Election; Now What for America?

By Jacques Habra |

I was one of the 58 million people who voted for Mitt Romney on Tuesday. Romney lost because 60 million people voted for President Barack Obama.

Jacques Habra
Jacques Habra

It was unfortunate that the Obama campaign almost entirely focused energy on discrediting Romney — who is a proven change agent — instead of focusing on why the Obama plan is better. For the populous, fear is always stronger than reason, and it worked. Since we now know who will lead our country for the next four years, perhaps it’s time to focus on that plan.

We remain at a gridlock. Nothing else changed in that the House of Representatives remains in Republican control and the Senate with Democrats. The country is divided and our problems are not going to go away. So now what?

Health Care

Obamacare is in the midst of full implementation and will shake up the public and private sectors like no other legislation in the history of U.S. politics. The “idea” is great — health care for all Americans — but where and how will we pay for it? One of the sources is Medicare, which begs the question: What do Medicare recipients do? This will be a source of great debate and great debt for America for the next four years and beyond. If Obama learned anything from this grueling campaign and close race, it is that Obamacare has holes and should be designed and implemented at a state level, not the federal level.


Everyone in the know is clear that this election is about the economy, and specifically job creation. Obama promised unemployment would be at the 5 percent range by now. Unemployment remains in the high 7 percent range. We as Americans cannot accept this status quo. We must demand jobs in the private sector fueled by a smart bipartisan tax plan. This is a task squarely on Obama’s shoulders. Let’s remember that in his first time at bat, Romney effectively managed the Massachusetts economy as a Republican governor with 87 percent of its legislative seats held by Democrats. Let’s hope Obama did his homework.

In the meantime, here are two important metrics that need immediate attention:

New business formations are at an all-time low under Obama. This has to turn around as small businesses will fuel any effective long term recovery. What is the plan here, Mr. President??

Creating jobs doesn’t count when you lose as many or more. How do you address the fact that so many Americans are living off of welfare support — more than under any other administration in the history of America?

Foreign Policy

Most Americans find the Obama administration’s handling of the Benghazi tragedy to be incompetent at best and, at worst, a cover-up of gargantuan proportion. The truth will come out and if the Obama administration made mistakes, administration officials need to own them and operate herein with tremendous humility. We all have to operate in good faith that the Obama administration is managing the balance of power to maintain peace and keep Americans out of harm’s way.

Know this verity: If Iran gains nuclear armament and/or Syria’s conflict does not subside and/or Israel takes matters into its own hands and/or Obama does not resolve the China trade deficits, our country faces a perfect storm of economic demise.

We are currently at $16 trillion in debt and more spending is on the horizon. If we are forced to go to war or cannot control trade, we will lose our borrowing power and the Obama administration’s precious social services will disappear de facto.

I do appreciate Obama’s call for unity (although it would have been nice to see this during the campaign) and will stand with my fellow Americans to see our country through this very difficult time.

I look forward to Obama’s plan and hope he is earnest in taking insights from a proven change agent in Romney.

Noospheric founder Jacques Habra is an award-winning entrepreneur who coaches entrepreneurs, builds companies, and speaks nationally on topics of entrepreneurship and self-assessment. Click here for more information about Noospheric or visit

» on 11.07.12 @ 03:57 PM

One of the most positive and clear reactions I’ve seen to outcome of the election.  As an Obama supporter, I have the same concerns as Mr. Habra and believe he (Obama) will guide us through the major issues.  Thanks for the succinct summary and as you and Obama said, ‘lets stay united.’

» on 11.07.12 @ 04:19 PM

For all of his wealth and business experience, Romney was beaten because Obama ran a better campaign.  That’s the first point. Second, Romney stood for nothing/everything.  That made it easy to define him.  To blame the Obama campaign when Romney had all of the money to redefine and rebut any challenge is ludicrous.  Romney failed. Obama succeeded.  As for the rest of your post, it would be more helpful if you kept to facts rather than debunked GOP talking points.  Benghazi?  Really?  Coming from a group that sold the WMD lie to Americans at a huge loss of lives and money?  MA didn’t vote for Romney after buying his hype when those same Democrats voted for him for Governor. He failed then too.  Even the SLC newspaper supported Obama as they claimed they no longer knew who Mitt was.  I didn’t need Obama to define Romney for me.  A man who is happy to support a war and a draft and then avoids service is a man who doesn’t deserve to be Commander in Chief.  And I am a lifelong registered Republican. Romney is a fraud and, thankfully, there are enough Americans who could see through his lies.

» on 11.07.12 @ 05:45 PM

Cut and paste job of talking points; Loads of one-sided regurgitation of what the Right wing party line pundits have been saying all along.
-get in touch with your heart
-Serve in the community- the feeling is warmer than a cash stuffed pillow.

» on 11.07.12 @ 06:02 PM

As a card carrying Democrat, I reluctantly have to agree with most of Habra’s points here.  It’s like from day 1 we were being told negative things about Romney.  Why?  Obama should win on a solid record, but he won because people were afraid of Romney as President.  I’m disillusioned by Obama’s first term… it was like the blind leading the blind watching his cabinet try and make good policy and not getting along with Congress.  Hey everyone, it’s the President’s job to make it work and not point fingers! 

I don’t know the details of what happend in Libya.  If Obama lied or mishandled things, they should tell us and not try and hide it any longer.  Just because past GOP misrepresented doesn’t make it right now.

We’re in for a bumpy ride!! here’s hoping Obama learned a thing or two from his mistakes.

» on 11.07.12 @ 06:16 PM

Thanks for the comments.

@mslindab - Obama spent $540MM on his campaign and Romney spent $336MM.  The vast majority of the Obama spend went to TV Ads.  The TV Ads were anti-Romney 3-1 vs. Romney’s ads which were 1-1 (anti-Obama/pro-Romney)

I interviewed a handful of independent voters in some of the battleground states who gave me the firm perspective that the ADs and negative characterization of Romney seriously affected their vote.

MA hasn’t voted Republican since 1984 and in the last 10 elections only Republican two times.

But I think you’re making my point.  All we heard from the Obama campaign was how negative Romney was and not nearly enough about how the next four years will be different from the past four.  Now that the election is over, let’s focus on accountability of our ‘elected’ officials.

@peach - the points made are summaries of the most important issues affecting Americans based on CNN exit polls.  If I missed anything, please let me know.  I agree that active civic/community service is critical.  For my entire professional career, I have actively served in the community and non-profit sector.

» on 11.07.12 @ 06:38 PM

I just gotta say Thank God I didn’t pay for that baloney sandwich!

Out of curiosity, I clicked on Jacques’ self promoting linkages. It took some clicking to find out what he did initially, before he became a world-renowned coach of entrepreneurs and launcher of startups, like Find My Cat.

This entrepreneurship coaching industry is possibly one of the silliest and most misguided things that emerged from the tech boom. They used to call it Small Business Management and taught the class at SBCC. Now it’s a major UC department, bent on showing young, inexperienced students how to secure millions of dollars in private equity funding so they can waste it, lose their idea and IP, and…

work as an entrepreneurship coach. Or, the one I like best: Entrepreneur In Residence at some venture capital firm.

» on 11.07.12 @ 07:00 PM

@Rambler - I’m not really sure how to reply and I don’t want to get off topic.  Our consulting and investment practice has a solid track record of helping to launch companies.  We sometimes just provide the coaching and mentoring though.  A lot of college grads can’t find a job these days so they have to ‘create’ a job and that’s the value proposition of entrepreneurship coaching.  Not to mention, those that are successful employ folks in the community which helps fuel growth and so on.  Anyways, sounds like you’ve had some personal experience with the curriculum that wasn’t very positive… sorry to hear that.  If you’re interested, I can advise you next time there’s a public speaking course on some of the topics.  I serve on the MIT Enterprise Forum and we do monthly events that focus on tech/entrepreneurship… could be interesting to you perhaps:

» on 11.07.12 @ 08:02 PM

Let’s be honest about campaign finances.  What Obama or Romney spent out of their legitimate campaign funds is not relevant to the discussion writ large.  After Citizens United which Romney endorsed and Obama opposed, the Adelson’s of the world paid many of the bills.  If you want to compare apples to apples, fine but don’t mislead your readers.  Further, shouldn’t free market zealots be in favor of doing what it takes to legally win?

As for the Obama plan vs the Romney plan.  Seriously?  Romney wouldn’t identify any specifics of his plans because he said they would be used as campaign fodder.  We should trust him. After hearing what he said - the latest being the proven lie about Jeep moving its jobs to China - more Americans than not realized he could not be trusted. I am comfortable with where Obama is on the major issues with or without the specifics you think were lacking only from the President.  Romney was the one who needed to put them forward.  He failed.

» on 11.08.12 @ 02:26 AM

Good article Jacques, 
Obama’s “winners” speech was a litany of his own failure to lead for the last four years as he list off an agenda of new goals, from the economy, tax reform, poverty, education, health care, immigration reform etc, all of which have persisted his entire term with nearly zero progress.  Where is the leadership?
When Chicago teachers were on strike as the unions demand massive pay increases while presiding some of the worst results in the nation, what did the President say? Nothing – Where is the leadership?
When California unions refused any reform in pensions, and the Democratic Governor begged for mercy, what did the President say? Nothing- Where is the leadership?
When our diplomatic mission in Benghazi asked for help what did the President say? He said it was a movie- Where is the leadership?
When the fed screws my 89 year old mother with .1% annual interest on her saving and a negative real return for her retirement, what does the President say? – Nothing- Where is the leadership?
When everyone points to the few hundred thousand jobs created with trillions of stimulus, what does the Presidents say about the pain to come when we must pay China back? – Nothing- …..
The problem is Obama has confused leadership with popularity.  It won him the election but any one in leadership knows, it takes hard and sometime unpopular decisions to lead.  The reason 57 million Americans voted for a change is that they recognize we need a real leader, not a cheer leader.  Where will the leadership come from now?

» on 11.08.12 @ 10:45 AM

What a crybaby. Get over it, will you? The only thing Romney had going for him was his whiteness. That probably accounts for about 50 million of his votes.

» on 11.08.12 @ 12:34 PM

Jacques, good article.

I think that you can see where a lot of the challenge for this country lies just by reading the comments from Rambler. There are far too many like him on both sides of the political spectrum.

To gain unity and compromise would require those people to actually look at the issues logically instead of ignoring facts that don’t fit their views.

» on 11.08.12 @ 02:14 PM

It is unfortunate with all of Western Europe and England with various forms of seriously intrenched Socalism the left here continues to destroy small government and only wants to allow enough Capitalism to generate money to cover their tax and spend politics.

Obama states he wants to cover the debt by cutting spending BUT only if there are tax increases on the wealthy out of being fair?  HUH?  He spent 4 years creating vast costly programs and talked about cutting spending only before the election.  He added layers of government outside of Congress and the Constitution.  He never once talked about cutting his creations. 

At the same time he has, and continues to use the Populist tactic of old by debasing the currency (cheap money).  Unless government seriously retrenches spending policies (which Obama will not do), strengthen the dollar by stopping the printing presses (keeping it as the reserve currency of the world), there will not be enough left in the US economy to hold off recessions and failures that a world wide economy batters us with. 

Right now the Germans and English are fearful of the Euro failure with Greece and Spain (Italy is next) ready to go.  They have depended on the US Economy to provide markets, reserve currency in case of failure, and political stability world wide. 

Obama has clearly shown he does not want the US to be a stable factor (Syria, Libya, Egypt, Chinese incursions, North Korea) as the list of failed foreign polices grows.

All of Latin America is socialist or communist.  Most if not all of Europe is socialist.  Why take a unique, and for most of the past 200 years widely successful, capitalist country and change it for the long term failure of tax and spend countries??????

In other words leave us alone.

» on 11.08.12 @ 03:20 PM

Really, it is painful to read your posts. You talk about “cheap” money and printing presses and the devaluation of the dollar, but…

Did you know that the dollar has retained its value better under Obama than under any of the last 4 presidents?

I am tempted to believe that you are simply regurgitating the pabulum you read in some tea bag flier. The similarities to posts from AN50 have to be more than like-mindedness; I don’t think a mind is involved.

» on 11.08.12 @ 03:52 PM

I think local Republicans should sit up and take notice. Here’s someone who knows what to say and what not to say (no mention of climate change). Mr. Habra has got a great smile and he takes time out of his busy life to coach entrepreneurs. With some care and attention, he could be the next Mike Stoker. Maybe even the next Chris Mitchum! And his timing could not be better. Republicans are on the cusp of a real comeback here. In 2008, Obama won by 28,000 votes in the County of Santa Barbara. This year, he only won by 20,000 votes. I just bought so I know I’m ready for 2014!

» on 11.08.12 @ 03:55 PM


Some times it is too easy when you bait the trap.

The dollar has retained it value because of the world recession and monetary investors had no other place to go.  Euro?  Nope you see its problems.  China has huge problems, no place there.  The Franc?  Now there is a laugh.  Middle east?  Only when it rejects jihad. 

It is a fact when you do things with over printing of money like pumping $40 Billion a Month into mortgage markets before an election, there will be a price to pay.

Unless there is a total collapse of the economy eventually population expansion and pent up demand will see increased spending.  People will save for 5 years to get some thing when they would have done it in 1 year prior to the recession.  The problem is that dollar will not be worth what it was 5 years ago!

Paper money used to be backed by precious metals.  No longer.  Then it was backed by rational monetary policies and constraint on the circulating supply in a solid economy.  Now we have intentional printing of money, giving the illusion of stability, and hopes no one sees the truth in light of massive government spending.  Still think the dollar has stabilized?  Look at the price of Gold since the first day of the Obama administration.

There is not enough space here to do the explanation justice.

Anyway thanks for helping me win a bet…just did not think it would happen in hours instead of days.

» on 11.08.12 @ 05:15 PM

Second try since my first post was censored.

While his opinion is of interest to some his resume reeks of self indulgence and self grandiosity.  Jacques is one of a number of self proclaimed “Entrepreneurial Coaches”. This is a title that he bestowed upon himself regardless of actual, tangible, real successes.  By the way what is an Award Winning Entrepreneur?  Wouldn’t that be financially successful???  I’ve built a number of businesses and have never heard of an award for being an entrepreneur outside of financial windfalls and/or a collective respect…or the occasional plastic awards that the IB’s send your way…

If Jacques had actually built a successful org., I might be interested in his opinion but as Rambler pointed out, his successes are nonexistent…

So Desi, yes, he very well could be the next charlatan to step into the GOPs ring.  I’d like that since it would showcase how little Mr Habra actually knows about building a long term successful business and put his list of accomplishments right up there with Paul Ryan’s - a man who has never held a job in the private sector yet touts his acumen…

Let’s see if he has the balls to post this one.

» on 11.08.12 @ 05:59 PM


You can really tell the people who are winners than the losers (someguyinsb) in this thread.  Why would you (someguyinsb) attack someone like this instead of focusing on what he is saying and the issues?  Because he’s right?  Because you’re probably a failure in your life?

FOr the record, I did some of my own research and this guy (Jacques Habra) is pretty much the epitome of success.  He built his first company while still in college and sold it a few years later. (web-elite)  He’s built and sold other companies.  He serves on local boards (westmont, MIT, Arthritis), puts on events that garner crowds of hundreds.

Some of the current companies serving the community are an online marketing agency with client testimonials,First Click, and a consulting company Noospheric (sweet name by the way)...

I found a whole list of legitimate awards too… entrepreneur of the year, young entrepreneur of the year, product and service awards.  What recognition have you received “Some Guy in SB”??

I mean what is your problem?  Who are you?  Let’s google your name and compare apples to apples.

Why don’t you put the personal attacks to rest and respond to the very important issues raised in this poignant article.

Just my .02 cents.

» on 11.08.12 @ 06:56 PM

“The dollar has retained it value because…blah de dah…there will be a price to pay.” - Really?

You have just been consigned to the goofy bin. Since Cardinal Witless has taken leave of us (or expired), you can be Cardinal Reallygoofy. In honor of your naming, and in recognition of your silly post, I’ve written you a little limerick:

The Cardinal was feeling all goofy
while putting together a proof-y
he said what he said
but his face turned all red
(Did somebody slip him a roofy?)

» on 11.08.12 @ 07:20 PM


I feel the same way about the entrepreneurial coaching racket. I don’t know if JH is really helping young companies, or simply playing another consulting gimmick. I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt for now.

Jacques, I have been in business in SB since the mid-80’s. I was a close friend of Joe Nida, who was major player in the CCVF. I know Guy Kawasaki personally, and I worked with, back in the day. I watched Dennis “Acorn” Cagan reach his apogee. I have seen multiple other opportunists take advantage of young entrepreneurs. 

I have seen newly-minted PhDs get sidelined into multi-year funding fiascoes based on award-winning business plans that nobody will fund, and the total disbelief that their coaches and professors could be so wrong.

I would prefer that only the most determined entrepreneurs even try to start a company. These people need no coaching, and they know that if their idea is that good they don’t need a glossy presentation or a fancy business plan. They grow their companies slowly, and the jobs they provide last many years.

And if an entrepreneur would not sink his total savings, and his widowed mother’s pension into seeding a company, why should anybody else throw their money in?

The angels and VCs have a hard enough time looking for wheat in the chaff. Why increase the chaff? More funded chaff means more money lost, means tougher term sheets to follow for the real deals, means companies and ideas lost in the morass of investor control.

Good luck.

» on 11.08.12 @ 07:49 PM

Wow. someguyinsb says Jacques has no experience like “Paul Ryan a man who has never held a job in the private sector yet touts his acumen…”

Presumably from someguy’s comments here and on other posts he is an Obama fan. But if he would look at the facts honestly he would admit that Obama also has never held a job in the private sector. But even so, he was elected to the highest office in the land. (Community organizer isn’t really a job in the private sector in the usual sense of the term.)

How strange is that?

» on 11.08.12 @ 07:55 PM

Someguy - JH doesn’t screen our comments, Noozhawk does.. why don’t you answer the questions I posed.  Since you have the audacity to attack someone’s character, YOU should have the balls to stop hiding behind the veil of anonymity.

Your Truly,

Ben Taylor

» on 11.08.12 @ 08:01 PM

I don’t know Jacques and although I am tempted to comment on the results of our election, I will instead confine my remarks to entrepreneurship.

As someone who started a successful business, most people don’t understand the sweat, time, money, and courage it takes to start a business. In the days when I started my business, I never worked so hard. I literally was working around the clock to ensure that I would be successful.

Many risk all they have when starting a business venture. Not everyone can do this, but I wish people understood the sacrifices better and appreciated the hardships our entrepreneurs endure. Anyone who starts a business and creates jobs for other people has my utmost respect and admiration.

Our govt should be encouraging entrepreneurship, not making it more difficult for people who are willing to take this giant leap of faith into the unknown.

» on 11.08.12 @ 08:06 PM

OUt of curiosity, I went ahead and did my OWN RESEARCH on Habra - I came across this page:

While I don’t know Jacques at all, I DO know several people on this page and so I called two friends.  From what they say, Jacques is a rock solid community volunteer and very good at what he does.  I got the impression from one source that he downplays his success.  I concur with bentaylor that the thread should talk about the issues facing America.

now back to the topic of our divided country.

1) Obamacare will actually save money for taxpayers in teh long run.  Yes, Medicare will take a hit, but it should be a short term blip.

2) Couldn’t agree more that jobs are the issue.  I am deeply concerned that we are at all OK with ~8% unemployment.

3) What happend in LIbya is very sad, but it happens to all administrations, red and blue.


» on 11.08.12 @ 08:22 PM

“Obamacare will actually save money for taxpayers in teh long run.”

Frank, would you care to explain how this will happen.

» on 11.08.12 @ 08:34 PM


Regardless of what one’s political preferences may be, we must all be grateful that as Americans we reserve the right to express our opinions. Jacques articulately argues his point and those of us that disagree may do so with the logic we deem fitting, but let us not stoop so low as to make unjustified character attacks.

Many entrepreneurs have great ideas and the passion to follow them, but lack the knowledge, sustained motivation, and resources to execute them. Good consultants and coaches provide an unrivaled support system that helps the “first-timers” find their way down an unfamiliar path, dramatically reducing the chances of failure. I am a young entrepreneur that has worked with, and been personally mentored by Jacques and know him to be a forward-thinking, innovative entrepreneur who has brought success to those he has coached. He is one of the most collected and balanced individuals I have had the privilege of interacting with and is deeply committed to helping others, bettering his community, and improving our world.

» on 11.08.12 @ 09:33 PM

DJ, do you know what a “change agent” is? In the context that JH uses, in reference to Willard Romney?

Anybody who is familiar with the changes a man like Romney brings, and has brought to companies like Delphi Electronics and Sensata, would not hold him up as a person the President should consult.

Investors don’t like any threat to capital gains tax treatment, qualified dividends treatment, or upper tax bracket taxation. In other words, most wanted Romney. JH, like Craig Allen, probably makes his money based on good relations with these people, and I have no doubt that this informs their political commentary. The stuff in this article is oldish campaign rhetoric, rehashed to state a position. Nothing more.

I’m sure JH is grateful for your testimonial, and that you meant every word. None of which makes his editorial valuable or enlightening.

» on 11.09.12 @ 01:43 AM

Lou - it’s all here… should be solid cost savings…

» on 11.09.12 @ 03:27 AM

Frank, the CBO report essentially says that we will achieve over $500 million in Medicare savings and another $500 million in tax increases to offset the $1 trillion of additional spending under Obamacare. The problem with these numbers is that the assumptions are not realistic.

I can promise you no Administration or Congress will cut Medicare by $500 million. Healthcare providers are already suffering from low reimbursements under Medicare and will fight any attempt to cut them any more. There has been a Medicare “fix” (legislation to suspend the cuts) every time these expenditure reductions were scheduled to go into effect in the past.

Most of the tax increases come from a so-called “Cadillac” tax on high value health insurance plans (mostly labor union plans) starting in 2018. How much do you want to bet this won’t happen.

The CBO is a reputable organization, but you know the saying: Garbage in, garbage out.

Think of it this way: We are going to mostly subsidize around 30 million people so they can purchase health insurance. The govt is going to pick up the tab for almost all these health insurance premiums. Do you really believe Obamacare is going to save us money under these circumstances. If you do, check out the universal healthcare program in Ma.

» on 11.09.12 @ 12:25 PM


Don’t bother arguing with Lou, he doesn’t believe any government data, or any data that doesn’t support his positions.

He’ll be coming out with a book someday, called “Spinning Statistics into Damn Lies” - it will likely be self-published and available on Amazon for $1.99.

» on 11.09.12 @ 03:14 PM

Rambler, how about if I am paid $1.99 for every time govt projections are wrong. That would be a lot easier than writing a book.

Would you like to make a wager regarding the amount of additional revenue raised because of Prop 30?

» on 11.10.12 @ 05:12 PM

I know Jacques to be a person of integrity and an advisor to local nonprofits and startups. To what community benefit do readers use the opportunity to comment for personal attack? That behavior discourages other readers from thoughtfully engaging in the online community and limits our potential to learn from other points of view.

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