Donald Lambro

President Obama made another futile stab at his long-suffering, sluggish economy this week, but he still doesn't understand why it's not getting any better.

He didn't address the lack of sufficient capital investment in a job-challenged economy or the tax incentives needed to get it running at full throttle to boost stronger economic growth and full employment.

He didn't sound a clarion call to expand new business formation and encourage risk-takers who will put up their capital to launch new job-creating enterprises. It's one of the hot topics in the economic community right now, but not in the Obama White House.

"There is an investment dearth," complains Martin Wolf, the Financial Times' chief economic analyst.

Indeed, Obama didn't discuss "economic growth" ideas in any meaningful way, and avoided any specific mention of the underlying illnesses that plague our economy: high unemployment, 11 million Americans out of work, and an undernourished economic growth rate.

Instead, he talked about the dire social symptoms of his weak economy: "income inequality," higher poverty rates, and the "daily battles to make ends meet, to pay for college, buy a home, save for retirement."

In a 48-minute speech at an arts and education center in a low income, Southeast neighborhood in the nation's capital Wednesday, he laid out what will be the economic focus in the last 37 months of his presidency.

If anyone thinks for a moment that the president offered a new way out of the long-stalled economic problems that afflict our country, you can forget.

This was a deeply political campaign speech laden with class warfare rhetoric about how much wealthier people in the top earn versus those in the middle or at the bottom.

The nation's frustration with the economy had nothing to do with his own impotent, counterproductive policies, he seemed to be suggesting. "It's rooted in the nagging sense that no matter how hard they work, the deck is stacked against them," he said.

He raised the image of a child who "may never be able to escape poverty because she lacks a decent education or health care," among other government programs.

How about the more likely obstacle that her parents can't find a full-time job, or that there won't be a job for their kids when they enter the workforce?

Washington Post reporter Zachary Goldfarb, who noted "the president offered little sense of how he might achieve his long-sought goals," wasn't fooled by Obama's revival tent, political rhetoric.

Donald Lambro

Donald Lambro is chief political correspondent for The Washington Times.