Monday, July 13, 2009

A Presidential Editorial

Just in case you missed it, the President of the United States had an editorial in The Washington Post yesterday. I hope you will take the time to read it.

Rebuilding Something Better

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was not expected to restore the economy to full health on its own but to provide the boost necessary to stop the free fall. So far, it has done that. It was, from the start, a two-year program, and it will steadily save and create jobs as it ramps up over this summer and fall. We must let it work the way it's supposed to, with the understanding that in any recession, unemployment tends to recover more slowly than other measures of economic activity.

I think the President has been quite candid about the economy. I recognize that he must balance the need for honesty with the need for hope. While he must warn the country of the seriousness of the situation, he must also give the people hope that we have the capacity to meet the crisis.

It’s easy to criticize his performance. It’s even expected of the Republicans. They are the opposition. That is their job. Even I can provide some criticism.

I think the stimulus package was too small. Mostly, that is because I listen to Paul Krugman. Professor Krugman got to do a little “I Told You So” last week with a piece entitled That ‘30s Show. The stimulus was supposed to create or save 3 1/2 million jobs (and it probably will) but we’ve lost 6-8 million. President Obama compromised on the cost. Some aid to the States was cut from the Bill. California. Enough said.

I think President Obama was wrong to compromise with the Republicans on the stimulus plan. But what do I know ? I’m looking at the here-and-now. Maybe President Obama is looking into the future. The Republican Party, as it stands right now, might turn out like Iran. Look what happened to Iran when we started talking to them instead of talking at them. I can only hope that the Republican Party is no more monolithic than they wanted to make Iran out to be. Who knows ? Maybe there are a few million people that don’t believe the religious clerics and military/industrial complex should be running the country.

Like I said, I hope you’ll take the time to read it. And do me a favor. Try to have just one original thought about the subjects being discussed. Imagine 8 million people unemployed but not worried to death that they’ve lost their health insurance along with their job. Imagine an energy infrastructure that you didn’t have to subsidize with a military budget that is almost half of the entire world’s military budget. . Study up on the budget deficit history. If you’re truly worried about your children and grandchildren’s future when their country owes so much, then I know you’re worried about their health. Taxes won’t kill them. Wars -- over religion, oil or whatever -- will.

Don Brown
June 13, 2009

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