As we reach Labor Day next Monday, the economy is the number one issue, and it is only 14 months to Election Day.
The economy has stalled in relation to job growth, the first time to have no job growth since February 1945. We are likely going into a deep recession, although one could argue that we have never left the Great Recession, which supposedly ended in 2009.
This is an extremely tough time for President Obama and the nation, and he MUST act aggressively, but also realistically about the economic situation.
People have been speculating in the news media about the “What Ifs”, if Hillary Clinton had won the Presidency, or of John McCain had defeated Obama in 2008.
This is pointless, as we must live with reality, but to believe that Hillary Clinton, who had already gained the hatred of Republicans and the Right Wing conservatives, would somehow have magically produced a better economy and more support from the opposition party is to dwell in fantasizing on a major scale!
And to believe that John McCain, who had reportedly had plans to select former Texas Senator Phil Gramm, one of the architects of the financial disaster through his corrupt connections, to be his Treasury Secretary, tells legions about what he would have done regarding the economy. And having Sarah Palin, rather than Joe Biden, as an adviser on foreign policy, is enough to make anyone have nightmares!
So, as Michael Beschloss, the historian, told Obama at a retreat recently, he must make it clear to the American people that he is fighting difficult forces, not all of which can be controlled, and that things are going to get better, and that a lot of the responsibility for the mess we are in is due, not only to the Republicans led by the Bush Administration, which put us in the financial crisis, but also by Republicans now who are willing to sacrifice high unemployment as a way to convince voters that they should switch back to the failed policies of the past!
So, as Beschloss told Obama, fight like hell like Franklin D. Roosevelt, who faced much higher unemployment rates, but was reelected, by making it clear that the GOP hates him, and he accepted their hate and would fight them tooth and nail for what must be done! Obama can no longer be “Mr. Nice Guy”, but must instead “give them hell”, as Harry Truman did in 1948!
So therefore, a very bold, aggressive jobs plan MUST be offered by Obama next Thursday, even if it seems likely that nothing will be done by the Republican House of Representatives! Use the plan against them in the upcoming Presidential campaign as an issue if they will not budge, and make it clear to voters that it is because of the Republicans that nothing can be done! Emphasize education, health care, infrastructure projects, and energy programs, making it clear these are the future of America, now, or after the Election of 2012, with a rejuvenated Democratic majority, at least in the House of Representatives, if not the Senate!
And as part of this strategy, Obama has already, through his Justice Department, decided to pursue those corrupt, evil banks that helped to cause the housing crisis, and have been continuing their harm in the mortgage market by their dirty, corrupt tactics even up to the present! These banks include Deutsche Bank, J P Morgan Chase, and Bank of America. The executives who run these banks, and others that have proved to be greedy and selfish, having no concern for the American people, need to be prosecuted and sent to prison, held accountable for their evil actions, and finally, it looks as if the administration is starting to show its muscle in this regard!
And the unpopular decision today to delay the smog standards proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency to 2013, while highly regrettable, seem reasonable now with the high unemployment rate and the stagnant economy. But it should be seen only as a DELAY, not an abandonment, of higher environmental standards for business and industry, and hopefully, with a Democratic President and Congress in 2013, the crackdown on the pollution standards can be revisited!