After a narrow victory on the Health Care Reform Bill, the President is now on a PR campaign to not only sell the bill’s virtues, but to sell himself as the new leader of the Democratic party. President Obama had to ride a rough road to the climax of the whole HCR debate and mess. I have said since early last summer, he is solely to blame for the fiasco. He learned that with landmark or even very important legislation, he must be out front, ala my hero LBJ! I believe he will advance this new-found inner strength with the next two huge issues facing the country today, jobs and the economy and financial industry regulation.

For the third straight month, unemployment has remained at 9.7%. As these statistics seek their own levels, the bright news is last month there were 162,000 new jobs added nationally. The nabobs of negativity on the right are already crying that a third of the increase is part-time census workers. So what! It’s real people drawing pay checks that will be able to start spending and adding to the economy. As the economy grows, more people will be needed in the work force. Duh! The stock market numbers have grown at over a 20% rate since last year, the GDP grew the last quarter of ’09 and is expected to show more increase for the first quarter of ’10. New housing starts have increased in two out of the first three months this year, average home values have started to creep up although there are still too many foreclosures on the market, and auto sales are booming, even Toyota was up 41% year-over-year in March. Except Chrysler, all the major manufacturers are up around 40% this year. GM may start repaying its loan to the federal government sooner than expected. This is all great news and the President needs to get out there and promote it. He needs to because the right-wing has so dominated the focus of the news to the negative that President Obama needs to attack at full strength. We all know bad news travels twice as fast as good news.

The one component that is holding back economic expansion is the reluctance of the banks to loan money. Businesses rely on loans in order to expand. If the banks remain tight in their lending guideline, the economy will max out again. The growth it has gained this year is more a function of private investment than bank loans. This brings us to the other big issue the President needs to attack. He should be able to get bi-partisan support for legislative action to get the banks to start freeing up money to the private sector, both for business and mortgages. If the Republicans don’t join the President on this initiative, they will put yet another nail in the coffin for any future seat gains they think they are going to get in Congress. This is a directive from Washington that has only positive results. As the second part of legislative action for the economy, the President needs to lead the government back to stringent regulation of the financial industry in general. We are already seeing the same culprits that caused the global economic melt-down at it again. Some of the same institutions that grabbed money from TARP and the Stimulus Package, are back “gambling” with bank account holders money. These greedy bastards have to be reeled in. Deregulation doesn’t work in a our capitalist economy because of unchecked greed that leads to collapse and failure. It doesn’t matter what your political ideology is or what party you side with, these are undisputed facts. If left unchecked for much longer, the economy will tank again. Any voter that supports a politician that does not favor regulation, must also be in favor of economic disaster! It really is that simple. If you let unchecked greed operate at the control of banking, mortgages, insurance, and Wall Street, collapse will be the ONLY result. The President needs to get out front on this issue, be proud of his Presidential progress in area, and call out any of the opponents that do not favor finance industry regulation.

Now that the President has his “legs of leadership” under him, he needs help. The Democrats need strong leadership from some newer of fresher people. Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi have become rather passe. Senator Al Franken, I think, will be the next Paul Wellstone. A relentless and tireless worker for the poor and disadvantaged and a firebrand that refuses to be a wallflower. Congressmen Anthony Weiner(NY) and Alan Grayson(FL) have become intense leaders. Bill Halter, Senatorial candidate in Arkansas, has a bright future as does Robin Carnahan in Missouri. The Democratic party needs to push Howard Dean to the top again. His smarts, his vision, and his intellect make him a valuable guy to have on the team, out front!

As the Republican party meanders leaderless through the year of 2010, they seem hell-bent on creating their own demise. Although these are mid-term elections, they are still very important. In 2000 and 2004, the Republicans through their own ineptitude and deafness, teed up the national elections for the Democrats. But, the Democrats inept bungling of two straight Presidential election years can not happen again! Once again, the Republicans are digging their own grave and this time the Democrats need to seize the opportunity. It should be an interesting spring, summer, and fall! Thanks for reading today and I look forward to reading your comments.

Cam Obert


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