Thursday, September 1, 2011

Obama "Leads" from Behind

Here is a post by Mark Thoma on his Economist's View blog showing Obama's idea of "leadership":
The White House has a new initiative:
“The idea behind ‘We the People’ – as the new program will be known – is that anyone with an idea or cause can go to the White House’s website, and make a public pitch for support. If the idea gets 5,000 backers within 30 days, said White House spokeswoman Sandra Abrevaya, a ‘working group of policy officials’ will respond.” You can check out the White House website here.
It won't get 5,000 comments, but I have a petition:
The administration should propose an aggressive job creation package as soon as possible, and apologize for not doing so sooner.
The White House website says:
Creating or signing a petition is just the first step. It’s up to you to build support...
I was kind of hoping the administration would help to "build support" for a job creation package, that's been a problem all along. But I suppose I shouldn't expect things to change now.

Maybe Obama will surprise us when he gives his jobs speech later this week (if Boehner will let him talk), and unlike the last time maybe the administration will follow up and do what they can to build the support such a program would require -- given the size of the employment problem it's worth trying -- but I'm not expecting that to happen.
This is pathetic. Obama is encouraging his "followers" to do a "buid your own government and leave Obama out" movement. The guy simply doesn't want to lead. Even when people get together and petition, he will pat them on the back and point them out the back door and tell them "keep up the good work" and not offer even the slightest help. Crazy!

From a separate post by Mark Thoma:
Remember the White House Jobs Summit? It was in December, 2009:
White House Jobs Summit: Real Progress or PR Stunt?, ABC News: President Obama said today that he is not interested in "taking a wait-and-see approach" when it comes to job creation, as his administration faces unemployment numbers at their worst levels since 1983.

"What I'm interested in is taking action right now to help businesses create jobs right now, in the near term," the president said at the opening session of the White House jobs summit.

The summit, announced a week after the Bureau of Labor Statistics said unemployment reached 10.2 percent, is the administration's latest effort to do just that.

However, some critics dismiss it as little more than a publicity stunt.

Obama acknowledged the skepticism that the summit would produce tangible results, but said he was confident there would be some progress...
Obama was not interested in "taking a wait-and-see approach"? Here we are almost two years later and I would be hard-pressed to make a case that the summit marked the beginning of a serious attempt to create jobs. Apparently, being serious about job creation means that when poll numbers are down and a reelection can be seen in the distance, then it's time to pretend like you are doing something.
Don't hold your breath. The 2011 version of "jobs, jobs, jobs" is likely to see as much "follow through" as the 2009 version of "jobs, jobs, jobs".

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