Tony Blankley

But recently, America has not been blessed with a reliable free market, fiscally sound policy, nor with much sincere, convincing optimism from our most senior Washington leaders -- conspicuously including our president, who seems in recent weeks to have been captured by a sense of exhaustion, futility and helplessness.

He has cited the Japanese earthquake, the "Arab Spring," oil prices and instability in Europe as forces beyond our government's control that are causing our economic troubles.

I would suggest that the Republican candidate for president might want to respond to that with, "Respectfully, Mr. President, if you don't know what to do with the presidency to save our economy, perhaps the office should be turned over to someone who does."

The Republican presidential aspirant who can capture optimism in his or her tone -- while realistically describing how traditional American economic policies can regain prosperity for us -- is likely to win both the nomination and the presidency.

Notwithstanding our current troubles, the underlying strength of the American workforce and the unmatched technological depth of our economy will be the basis for our resurgence -- when Washington policy once again permits our economy to perform at its full strength.

Of course, the unleashing of our vast, relatively inexpensive carbon energy reserves (coal, oil, gas, shale oil and shale gas) must be the foundation of sustained prosperity because throughout history there is a direct correlation between abundant cheap energy and prosperity.

But beyond nature's blessings efficiently delivered by a once again unshackled, unsubsidized energy industry, Americans bring unprecedented and unmatched brainpower to economic activity.

A Rand study for the Pentagon in 2008, as the Economist described it, found that "America is still the world's science and technology powerhouse. It accounts for 40 percent of total world spending on research and development, and produces 63 percent of the most frequently cited publications. It is home to 30 of the world's leading 40 universities, and employs 70 percent of the world's living Nobel laureates. America produces 38 percent of patented new technologies in the Organization for Economic Cooperation Development, OECD, and employs 37 percent of the OECD's researchers...

"There is little evidence that America is resting on its laurels. Countries such as China and India may be boosting their science and technology muscle faster than America. But they are starting from a low base. America is outperforming Europe and Japan on many performance measures...America's growth rate in patents averaged 6.6 percent a year compared with 5.1 percent for the European Union and 4.1 percent for Japan."

But this has not been a season of looking to our strengths. Rather, we have been obsessing on any perceived weakness -- a season of Chinese gloating and Russian sharking at our temporary faltering. It is time to close our ears to those who have given up on America -- foreign and domestic -- rekindle our optimism, unshackle our strength and get about the business of conquering tomorrow for the U.S.

Tony Blankley

Tony Blankley, a conservative author and commentator who served as press secretary to Newt Gingrich during the 1990s, when Republicans took control of Congress, died Sunday January 8, 2012. He was 63.

Blankley, who had been suffering from stomach cancer, died Saturday night at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, his wife, Lynda Davis, said Sunday.

In his long career as a political operative and pundit, his most visible role was as a spokesman for and adviser to Gingrich from 1990 to 1997. Gingrich became House Speaker when Republicans took control of the U.S. House of Representatives following the 1994 midterm elections.

©Creators Syndicate