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Obama’s Job Summit

December 3, 2009

Today, President Obama hosts some 130 business, labor and thought leaders at the White House to discuss ways to create more jobs. Finally.

There has been a noticeable absence of a unified, cohesive economic message during these lasts few weeks as the President and Congressional leaders have hunkered down to debate Health Care and come to a decision on the Afghanistan conflict. But now, with unemployment in double digits for the first time in decades (not counting the levels of unemployment being observed in urban and predominantly black communities), Democratic lawmakers are probing the idea of a second economic stimulus aimed directly at job creation.

All of this sounds like there is a concerted effort being made to address the massive levels of unemployment we are experiencing, however, there is to my knowledge no real strategy being presented to effect the challenging times we face, and as such the Obama administration looks to walk into the same problem they’ve had with the Health Care debate.  Coming to the table without having fleshed out what they want to see in a jobs creation plan.  One could make the argument that this was and is the looming reason that conservative pundits like Limbaugh and Beck have been able to produce such a visceral response by the Right’s extreme Fringe – they were fighting the ethereal.

It’s easy to create a boogey-man when what’s in front of you is ambiguous.

We need a plan of action.  Forums discussing the construct of joblessness are fine, but unemployment in the United States is pervasive in black America, and is quickly becoming so in the rest of the nations at risk demographics.  We need a complete and comprehensive strategy on the level of President Franklin Roosevelt’s WPA.  A federal program which before it concluded was the largest employer in the country.  Providing nearly eight million jobs to those without work.

The success of President Roosevelt’s packaged plan of action, needs to act as a model for President Obama’s administration. But instead, we hear the White House Press Secretary, Robert Gibbs saying that the

“private sector is the engine of job growth and wants to hear from CEOs on ways to increase hiring.”

A sideways denial of the ability of the federal government to greatly impact the unemployment epidemic – a tragic dereliction of responsibility in my opinion.  Lest we and the administration forget that the vaunted private sector has been purging it’s workforce now for some 13 months.  I don’t know, but I have a problem giving the keys to our economic engine to the folks who have been systematically off-shoring American jobs, hiring undocumented workers, reducing force without economic downturn, etc. Exactly what do we think the CEO’s of these “splendid” institutions are going to offer in the way of “CHANGE”? You guessed it zero.

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