Sunday, January 24, 2010

What went wrong

A good summary from columnist Myriam Marquez:

Obama was so attractive to independents. He talked the talk of change, of hope, of understanding what the average Joe, sans sixpack, wants from government.

Then, as president, he left it up to the most liberal Democrats in Congress to come up with the specifics, but not before selling out to insurance companies. So much for change. Labor unions got their protection from the proposed tax on Cadillac insurance policies while the rest of us are expected to pay up if the reform becomes law.

. . . Unemployment? Obama let Congress do the dealing, which meant the public unions got theirs. Money poured to public-school teachers, fire departments and cops -- all absolutely necessary expenses to avoid ever-more crammed classrooms and unsafe streets.

But the unemployed construction workers, secretaries and small-business people didn't get much. A little more money in their unemployment checks and food stamps. They want jobs, not welfare.

Again, Obama missed a chance to push for more money for public works projects in which private contractors could hire workers for tax cuts focused on small businesses -- not Fortune 500 companies. All of this he should have done his first year.

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