During this past week while President Obama was out campaigning for re-election... (er... I mean "selling his jobs bill") the most indictable evidence of his failure was made evident to all.
The current number of 14 million unemployed wasn't the issue. Though it's a scandal in and of itself.
It is the newly published number in U.S. News and World Report that puts the underemployed at 26 million.
"Put together, almost 26 million Americans are either unemployed, marginally attached to the labor force, or involuntarily working part-time—a number experts say is unprecedented."
Put the two numbers together and 40 million adults or 1 in every 7.5 working age people are without the capacity to work enough to live on in America.
My God, how can we live with ourselves?
Forget the smelly, crime-prone, sleep deprived, weirdos who are currently blaming businesses for the problem. Forget the fact that the President's own party couldn't pass his own laughable "jobs" bill this week on a first try with the least objectionable piece of the plan being put forward.
1 in every 7.5?
Compare that with other revelations this week that yet another controversial "green energy" company got a massive half-billion bailout, this one however located in Finland, and with deep ties to Obama's campaign bundling efforts and you've got the appearance of not just ineptness, but of nepotism, corruption, possibly criminality.
How does the President respond? By siding against the evils of business, and misleadingly imply that he's the champion of the working man. Going so far as to align himself with shout-outs to the occupiers that are obstructing the life of our nation's major cities.
On Thursday this week I asked my facebook followers, listeners, and readers if they deemed the economy a moral or political issue.
The reason I asked, is because generally when you see punditry discuss it, it's always in the context of how it can be manipulated to win elections. "Lower Taxes, boost small business, give the money's people back to the people." Or... "Tax those who aren't doing their fair share, and 'help' people by giving them more funding." Pandering, blatant campaigning, blatant emotional savagery.
But I asked anyway, because from the time I wrote about it in my first book in 2006, and long before then, I've fundamentally seen the economy as the largest moral issue of our time.
If we as a people--the ones empowered to run this nation--do not take active control in the economic development of our nation's future, it is WE who are abandoning our responsibilities and allowing the political savages have their way.
It is my firm belief that there are moral absolutes in economic development for America and one of the most important is one of dignity.
When the day comes and we put our feet on the floor at our bedside each morning, hoping more for someone else to help us, than we are willing to shoulder and help our selves, then we have ceased to be a moral nation. Put another way, expecting others to feed, clothe, house, and bury us is ultimately lazy non-living. And waiting for government to fix it is by definition insanity.
It's not that elections don't count. They do!
It's that we're so darned stupid most election cycles that we fall prey to the belief that the politicians are the ones in charge, when they've never been.
So how do we find enough work for 40 million jobs to be raised to the standard by which people can survive?
The only solution, is by thinking differently about our role in the matter.
Punish the politicians who got us here? Well, replacing them at least?
Yes! Or at least the ones who stand accountable now!
Thinking the next batch will solve all our problems for us?
If we are dissatisfied with what is happening, then what we need is to enter a season of creativity, engenuity, productivity and dignity. If politicians can help us in that respect, all the better.
But friends, they probably won't. And then--like certifiably crazy people--we'll be back on the treadmill in four more years.
Personally I'm ready to unplug that treadmill.