Before I get ugly, which I am afraid I may be, let me ask you to do me a favor. Sunday, as you know, is Mother's Day (or is it Mothers' Day?). In any event, in addition to what you're going to do for your mom, your wife, or someone else's mom on Sunday I am asking you to do me personal favor.
Please spend one minute and 23 seconds watching this Mother's Day message from former First Lady Laura Bush on behalf of the One Campaign.
Please click HERE and watch.
Now for the ugly part:
I watched the first 45 seconds of the scheduled debate among people who are pretending to be GOP candidates on the Fox News Channel last night. Bret Bair, the moderator, said the word "Fox" at least 15 times in those 45 seconds and I clicked over to an NCIS rerun.
The BIG QUESTION in Your Nation's Capital this week was: What will be the effect of whacking bin Laden on Obama's re-election chances 550 days from today?
My general answer has been: "This will have a half-life of maybe three weeks."
My backdoor neighbor here in Northern Virginia, James Carville, made it perfectly clear in the election of 1992 that the state of the domestic economy trumps all else. I'm not sure he put it exactly that way, but you know what I mean.
The old saying goes, "All politics is local." The Carvellian Tangent would be "All Economic Data is Local."
What the Dow is doing doesn't matter if your brother-in-law hasn't been able to find a job in two years.
Where the S&P is won't help if the value of your house continues to drift down and foreclosures in your neighborhood continue to drift up.
The Dollar versus the Euro only matters to people who are not spending somewhere in the vicinity of $4.00 for a gallon of regular gasoline, because the people for whom it does matter drive cars which use premium.
The price of an ounce of gold is of no interest to a woman struggling to buy a couple of boxes of Kraft Dinner and a pound of ground beef to feed her family of five.
A national debt of Fourteen Trillion Dollars is meaningless to a working man who is $14 short of being able to pay the rent after having paid for everything else this month.
If, in August 2012 Main Street America believes the economy is getting stronger, and unemployment is on a downward curve then Barak Obama will be re-elected. If they believe the economy is still barely bumping along, prices are rising, and jobs are still too hard to find, then he will be a one-term President.
If yesterday morning's jobless claims numbers were any indication, this is going to be a rough patch for President Obama.
The Reuters lead was: "The number of Americans filing for jobless aid rose to an eight-month high last week and productivity growth slowed in the first quarter, clouding the outlook for an economy that is struggling to gain speed."
This was on the heels of a report earlier this week that the U.S. economy "slowed to a 1.8 percent annual rate [of growth] in the first quarter after a 3.1 percent expansion in the final three months of 2010."
According to the Clear Capital Housing Index website: "U.S. home prices nationwide have dipped below the low recorded in March 2009. A combination of foreclosures and short sales attracted bargain-conscious buyers in recent months, many paying in cash and making low-ball offers."
In an inflationary period, people buy things today because they believe they will be more expensive next month. It appears that people thinking about buying a home are holding back because they believe prices will be lower next month, next quarter, or next year.
With all that depressing economic news in the hopper, President Obama will not be able to ride on the shoulders of a gallant group of brave U.S. Navy Seals for very long.
On the Secret Decoder Ring today: Links to the jobless claims story, to a site showing the growth of the national debt in real time, and the website about housing prices.
Also a license plate Mullfoto and a Catchy Caption of the Day.