26 August 2010

President Obama, please listen!

Earth to President Obama! Come in Please!

Look, Mr. President, let me be clear right off the bat. I'm on YOUR side. I WANT you to succeed, and succeed brilliantly. But it doesn't take much political acumen to see that things are not going well and that it is well past time to make some major adjustments. I think it's important first of all to be very clear on several points, that I believe at this point are beyond dispute based on the evidence from the real economy and what Americans are actually experiencing. Many inside the beltway, unfortunately including quite a few people in your own administration, are just not getting this, but here goes anyway:

1.  You have lost the mandate from the American people to invest in the economy to generate a recovery, and as a result the recovery is faltering. The current housing cliff is clear evidence that we are likely heading for a double dip recession, which MUST BE AVERTED and would be completely disastrous to your administration, possibly even fatal to any chance of reelection.

2.  The recession you inherited was more serious than first thought. The focus on Health Care Reform, which unfortunately didn't work too well, and on a weak financial reform package, took away focus on jobs, which should be the main job, the second job, and the third job, of your administration until the economic recovery is self-sustaining. All else is secondary. There will be time to fix the failure of health reform to include meaningful provider cost controls and insurance rate limits, which are absolutely necessary if the mandate for coverage will be acceptable to the American people, later. Right now, it's the economy, stupid.

3. The focus on deficits is completely misplaced right now. The stimulus worked, but it had too many tax cuts in it, and it just wasn't big enough. What's needed is an infrastructure, education, and services investment that will focus not on just putting a little money into the economy at random, but be highly targeted at job creation. This must be SOLD to the American people. YOU, as president, must do this. There are only nine weeks left before the midterms, so this must be a top priority.

3.  Bipartisanship is a complete waste of time. The Republicans are your enemy. All of them. They want you to fail. You must appeal directly to the people. Explain how now is not the time to retreat, now is not the time to extend tax cuts for the rich, which is the only plan the Republicans have. Now is the time to get busy, like America has always done in times of crisis (bring in a WWII reference), roll up our sleeves, and get Americans working again. We can work on restructuring government finances later. This is a CRISIS. And you have to convince the people of this, which of course means you have to believe it.

4. There can be NO QUESTION of cutting social security benefits or medicare benefits (as opposed to other savings in medicare). The Deficit and Inflation are not the problem. Read Paul Krugman. We are facing looming deflation. You must promise that if the people return Democrats to Congress, we will create jobs, get the economy moving again, and there will be no cuts to social security or medicare benefits and no further raising of the retirement age. These are Republican ploys to increase further the power and wealth of their base, which is the very rich. They use lies and propaganda to attract votes, but your base is the middle and working class, so you need to tell them the truth, and mean it: you will work for their interests.

5.  You need to promise that there will be a big change in the way government works, going forward. We will do a comprehensive review designed to evaluate and eliminate unnecessary spending, including military and national security apparatus that are gobbling up huge sums without creating many jobs, and focus the attention of government on rebuilding our education system, investing in renewable energy and other infrastructure, and creating jobs for middle class and working people. It's a new world, and most of the threat to America today is economic. In due course, this needs to lead to a drawing down of America's involvement in military misadventures, including in Afghanistan, and greatly reducing the size of the "national security state." This needs to be finessed, but if portrayed as eliminating what's just not needed in order to make government leaner and more effective, it can be done.

6.  Point out to people that we can be competitive. We can have good jobs, with great benefits, secure health care for all, secure retirement for all, just like they do in Europe, because we can do anything we put our minds to. Appeal to the patriotism of your base, and come right out and say that it's not patriotic to foster policies that weaken our economy. Clearly imply that Boehner, McConnell, et al., are unpatriotic when they propose policies that will help the rich but hurt the Main Street Economy.

PLEASE, Mr. President, wake up! It's past time to completely rethink your agenda, and to start promising the people what Democrats will do differently from what Republicans have done, and start really focusing on job creation and economic recovery. The phony Republican financed Tea Party movement has all but stolen the populist force which got you elected. It can be won back, but only if you stop listening to old school Clintonites like Ruben and Summers, declare war on the Republicans once and for all (start by kicking their propaganda outlet, Fox, out of the White House), get out of Washington yourself and start telling the people exactly what you propose to do to economy and bring a productive economy roaring back in America. You can do this, but it means a major change of approach, and the hour is late. 

Thank you.
David Studhalter

No comments:

Post a Comment

Gyromantic Informicon. Comments are not moderated. If you encounter a problem, please go to home page and follow directions to send me an e-mail.