It's jobs, jobs, jobs now for the Obama team, rather than health care, health care, health care. You have to call it progress, particularly if you're jobless, or fearful of becoming so at a time when 17 million Americans are either non- or underemployed.
We're about done, in other words, with the free-floating pretense that putting the federal government in charge of health care decisions somehow creates a lot of opportunity and employment.
There's a problem, nonetheless: We're not likely to get from the left, which numerically controls Congress and has its hooks in the White House, many inspirational ideas about the creation of private sector opportunity.
The left -- or, as it's known in today's media, the "progressive" side of the street -- doesn't think in private sector categories. You could as soon call on Umar "Hot Seat" Abdulmutallab for advice on forest fire prevention as ask the ordinary Democratic congressman for ideas on expanding the economy.
The left has hardly a clue as to how jobs are created, apart from jobs that spring up when new government bureaus open or new government regulations require the hiring of people to figure out what Congress meant, and then to make sure it happens.
Currently, the country's only steadily expanding area of endeavor seems to be government work. Just the other day, the Bureau of Labor Statistics -- a government agency, of course -- announced that members of government unions now outnumber the members of private sector unions: auto workers, truckers, carpenters, electricians and the like.
This isn't to lament the decline of private sector unionism as much as it is to note the shrinkage of the private sector relative to the burgeoning of the public sector over this decade and the last.
The left prefers government activity to other kinds: the better to set terms, costs and objectives. The left, that is, likes control, as contrasted with the right, which prefers to wait and see what people can dream up on their own. The left doesn't particularly encourage or even trust private dreaming, hence the emphasis on use of the tax code -- a mechanism handed down from the top -- to specify who needs what and why.