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March 8, 2009 [LINK / comment]
Obama's rhetorical dilemma
How is a president who campaigned on a theme of sky-high hopes supposed to govern when the country's economic prospects are bleaker than they have been since the Great Depression? Today's Washington Post detailed what an awkward and painful situation it is for the President, as the unemployment rate has risen to 8.1 percent. The measures to track down and eliminate wasteful government spending are a nice gesture, but woefully inadequate to resolve the budget crisis in any meaningful way. It reminds me of President Jimmy Carter's earnest but doomed administrative reform initiatives during his first year in office. What Obama really needs to do to lift economic hopes is take some concrete action that shows he respects private investors as something other than targets for wealth redistribution.
In times like these, sometimes a little gallows humor is what's called for, to show the suffering masses that he really does understand how desperate they are. In that sense, Obama could borrow a phrase from FDR and adapt it to the times:
The only thing we have to hope for ... is hope itself!
Jeff Frederick update
At Bearing Drift, Jim Hoeft posted his first video blog on the subject of Jeff Frederick being pressured into resigning. (See Friday.) It's a fair analysis, but I didn't agree with some of the lessons he drew for the Republican Party as a whole, so I commented:
I don't think the problem is with the GOP "message" and whether our leaders stick to "core principles" (itself a bone of contention these days), but rather, the lack of elementary political competence. Too many of our candidates have a campaign style aimed at the GOP "Base," often offending less-partisan voters in the process. Because of the excessive emphasis on ideology and principles, meanwhile, the very ideas of building a winning coalition or tackling real-world problems are viewed with suspicion these days. Frederick exemplifies both of those pathologies, and the party's current approach to elections and legislating is just plain dumb.
Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 09 Mar 2009, 12: 08 AM
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January 5, 2009 Illegal immigration: no problem
January 10, 2009 Bush's fiscal profligacy: a recap
January 20, 2009 Inauguration Day 2009
March 13, 2009 Tax revolt in Augusta County!
March 14, 2009 Mexican Army counterattacks
March 27, 2009 Facebook: resistance is futile
April 5, 2009 RPV chair Frederick is removed
April 8, 2009 Fujimori is convicted, again
May 3, 2009 (Very) Big Spring Day, 2009
June 12, 2009 Tiger Stadium memorial update
June 16, 2009 Home runs in New Yankee Stadium
June 28, 2009 Obama's health care proposals
June 29, 2009 House votes to regulate climate
July 7, 2009 R.I.P. Michael Jackson, Superstar
July 9, 2009 Conservative defeat in Mexico
August 16, 2009 Great Baseball Road Trip 2009
August 23, 2009 Road Trip 2009: The Birds of August
August 27, 2009 R.I.P. Edward M. Kennedy
September 7, 2009 Two clutch homers end Nats' skid
October 10, 2009 Republicans reunite in Verona
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November 4, 2009 Republicans sweep Virginia races
November 5, 2009 Yankees are the 2009 champions
November 21, 2009 Senate votes on health care
December 23, 2009 Musings on health care "reform"
December 30, 2009 Decade of creation, and destruction
December 30, 2009 Whither the Republican soul?
December 31, 2009 A (half) decade of baseball in D.C.
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