|It's Hard Out There for a Windy Presidential Candidate|
Last fall, it was the car driven into the ditch by Republicans that President Obama blamed for the lousy pace of the recovery. He has finally picked a new metaphor to show just how much he personally distances himself from the ongoing crisis: "headwinds".
At a speech Friday to workers in a Jeep plant, Obama said: "We're facing some tough headwinds. Lately, it's high gas prices, the earthquake in Japan and unease about the European fiscal situation. That will happen from time to time."
(Yeah, every once in awhile those breezy conditions pop up and just blow away all those jobs -- poof!).
And from his weekly radio address Saturday: "Even though our economy has created more than two million private sector jobs over the past 15 months and continues to grow, we're facing some tough headwinds. Lately, it's high gas prices, the earthquake in Japan and unease about the European fiscal situation."
(Uh-huh. Wall Street and tax-dodging corporations are all a-tremble that a big quake will strike Lower Manhattan. And oh, that market unease. If only the global plutocracy could just get confident, everything would be A-OK!. The cost of filling up their Hummers and armed Mercedes has left them reeling and unable to hire even a part-time janitor to scrub out their gold plated toilets).
Of course, the obedient little stenographers of the mainstream media are marching right in lockstep with Leader. Here is what Jeff Zeleny and Jim Rutenberg wrote in The New York Times Saturday:
"The campaign is shaping up as a test of whether the much-vaunted organizing abilities of Mr. Obama and his team can offset the headwinds he faces. In battleground states, volunteers are fanning out by the thousands to reach out to neighbors who helped Mr. Obama in his first presidential campaign and persuade them to re-up."
Of course, the press is making Friday's dismal jobs report all about how it will effect the 2012 presidential race - not about how it is affecting the actual people who don't have jobs. At least it's a switch from the totally made-up Debt Ceiling Showdown bringing us to financial Zero Hour. It can't be all that bad: after all, good buddies Obama and John Boehner have a golf date next weekend.
But getting back to that Times article. It was nothing more than a thinly disguised piece of White House boosterism. Zeleny and Rutenberg uncritically reported that "several thousand times a week, still-committed volunteers knock on the doors of potential new recruits and neighbors involved four years ago to see if they will join in." These two supposedly seasoned reporters were in Chicago for a campaign pep rally and obviously are swallowing the Messina gospel hook, line and sinker. They did not provide locations or names or photos to prove claims that thousands of Obamabots are annoying their neighbors in "battleground" states a year and a half before Election Day.
But back to what Obama is not doing about jobs -- his campaign has a thrilling answer. Again, according to the Times article:
"While Mr. Obama will not fully engage in campaign activity until next year, aides said, he is embarking on weekly economic-focused trips throughout the summer. Doing so will allow him to use his bully pulpit to show that he is focused on addressing joblessness, the issue that more than any other could shape his electoral prospects and that Republicans are using to assert that his policies have failed."
Nothing like using the bully pulpit in a new factory every week, speaking in that g-droppin' folksy campaign rhetoric, surrounded by the 250 blue collar workers of America who still have $10 an hour jobs, to show how much he is addressing unemployment. It's like the family sittin around the table. You lose a job, what do you do? You tighten your belts, you don't go on vacation, you don't go out to eat as much. But what you don't do is you don't stop savin for college to win the future. The guy doesn't even need a teleprompter for this kind of soarin oratory.
That's it. Just campaign talk, buying time till he gets that second term. We really should be hoping that either Mitt Romney or Jon Huntsman get the nomination, because among the three of these men, there is little difference. All three, for example, have espoused the same kind of health care "reform" we really got. All three are traditional, conservative Republicans and none is really admitting it. Obama must pretend to be somewhat progressive, while the other two are forced to pander to the right wing Tea Party. All three are pro-corporate, status quo kind of guys. Choice we can believe in.