One can dream. President Obama has an opportunity to give the greatest speech of his career when he returns from his visit to the Ganges with his entourage of 2000.
"My fellow Americans, the strength of our democracy rests on the ability of the citizens to express their views as they select their leaders. As we turn from the recent campaign season to the task of governing, I would like to lay out my administration's priorities for the next two years:
1. Jobs. The painfully high level of unemployment is unacceptable and requires a set of policies which embrace the people and institutions which create jobs. I will ask the Congress to immediately pass legislation which extends the current income, capital gains, and dividend tax rates through 2012, and that inheritance tax rates be set at 2009 levels (45% for estates over $3.5 million). We will extend the Research and Development tax credit through 2015. Regulatory changes affecting energy will be deferred until 2012. We will urge Congress to approve the pending free trade agreements with Columbia, Panama, and South Korea. Measures to increase lending to small businesses will be a priority.
2. Budgets. I will work with the Congress to develop a plan to get the budget deficit to international standards (no greater than 3% of Gross Domestic Product) by 2015. This will begin with a return of any unspent TARP and stimulus funding. We will incorporate many of the ideas of my Deficit Reduction Commission, and may well include a return of departmental budgets to pre-2008 levels, adjustments to Social Security (particularly for younger workers), and reductions in military spending.
3. Healthcare. While retaining the expansion of coverage contained in the landmark 2009 legislation, we will turn our focus to cost reduction. This will include provisions such as buying insurance across state lines, negotiation of prices with pharmaceutical companies, tort reform, reduced payments for doctors and hospitals, and insurance pools for small businesses. Regulatory requirements will be streamlined.
4. The Washington Climate. I have asked the Senate and House leaders of both parties to participate in a bi-weekly meeting at the White House on shared priorities, including any significant regulatory changes. The new leader of my Council of Economic Advisers will be a prominent business leader. I will call for the elimination of all earmarks.
The American people have spoken. I encourage the leaders of both parties to join me in seeking common sense solutions which address their priorities. God bless America. Our best days lie ahead."
Why is it so easy?
This week's video is Mitch McConnell's reaction to the election - he who was not invited to the White House for 18 months by the post-partisan president. He has commented that his primary objective is to be sure that Obama does not get reelected - matching Obama's primary objective of getting reelected. Not a great starting point for either.
Here's the link to my nuclear terrorism novel, The Target.
bill bowen - 10/5/10