President Obama's understanding of economic growth, and hence a full recovery of the economy, is lacking of insight, but most importantly honesty. If he does not correct course he will be pummeled in 2012. For dancing around the truth, and asking others to believe the spin, especially when they are living the opposite reality portends not just bad character, but a self destructive political strategy.
Watching President Obama attempt to speak straight in the midst of his reelection campaign efforts has become almost amusing. "Almost amusing" because when one out of ten workers cannot find work, and one out of five families is working as hard as they ever have, but cannot provide basic needs for themselves, people tend to get a little out of sorts as it pertains to being truthful about the economy.
When a struggling family is paying $5 a gallon for gasoline, and the President told people this past week that America is providing more domestically drilled barrels of oil a day "than at any point in history," but the truth is our production is roughly half of what it was in 1970, they tend to be annoyed, not amused.
So it's not really all that puzzling that while on Friday afternoon, the President was laying on the charm at a CBS townhall meeting with voters, that so few faces in the crowd were smiling.
Take this statement for example:
"So part of what's happened also is some structural changes in the economy. Where it used to be that there was broad-based shared prosperity, now if companies are doing really well -- they're not necessarily hiring back workers. They're just figuring out how to do more with fewer workers. That may increase profits, but it doesn't help folks who are lookin' for a job. And often times that look -- puts a lot of pressure on the people who are already on the job. So, some of the changes that are taking place in the economy are ones that took a decade or two to get to. And it's gonna take us several years for us to get back to where we need to be."
Out of both sides of his mouth, and seemingly simultaneously he insults the very small businesses who are the only ones equipped to help him fuel a recovery. He insults the idea of profits--which are necessary for higher employment to come into play. He insults efficiency which is needed for growth to occur. And he insults stewardship which keeps companies from going bankrupt.
He then "cherries" this sundae by pledging that it will require a few years before a recovery will be felt.