As reported in the above-linked Reuters article, President Obama is unveiling the next phase in his shift toward populism, designed to blunt his plummeting poll numbers, the defection of independents and a rising tide of anger over his failure to address unemployment.
This second phase, following the initial salvo fired at Wall Street and big banks last week (a good move, in my opinion), is far less impressive. In fact, it’s downright insulting, attempting to placate angry Americans by tossing them a few crumbs.
In announcing these intiatives, the president got off on a good foot:
“Creating good sustainable jobs is the single most important thing that we can do to rebuild the middle class,” Obama said …
But then, among the laundry list of proposed initiatives he announced, not a single measure to stimulate job growth was anywhere to be found. What we get is a mixed bag of increased child care tax credits, incentives for savings, new requirements to bolster 401k’s, and some help for those over-burdened with student loans.
Doubling the child care tax credit? The biggest reason that people incur child care expenses is because families can no longer make it on one income. Keep your tax credit. Bring our manufacturing jobs home!
More requirements for employers to provide 401ks? Mr. President, have you heard a big outcry about a shortage of 401ks? It’s employment we need!
Breaks for graduates burdened with student loans? They’d much rather be able to land decent jobs and start earning an income!
This isn’t “fighting for the middle class.” It’s an elitist approach to playing us for fools. Frankly, Mr. President, we’re sick of it. We’re sick of gimmicks; we want real fixes for the economy. We want to make the things we use. We want jobs making microchips, cell phones, computers, autos, kitchen appliances, clothing, tools, housewares, machinery, pharmaceuticals – you name it. We’re sick of your platitudes and fed up with kicking our economic problems down the road, to be dealt with by our children and grandchildren.
During the election, you promised to fix our trade problems and bring our manufacturing jobs back home. It’s time to deliver. It’s time for you to stand up to the parasitic economies that have been feeding on our market and jobs and sucking the life blood from our economy. If you won’t, we’ll find someone who will.