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Needed: Viagra for Backbones

by Published on

The White House needs a good alchemist. Not a magician who can turn lead into gold, but a practitioner who can formulate a Viagra-type pill to stiffen backbones.

Obama and team seem incapable of taking firm stands. They see a problem, address it in the boldest of terms, suggest stout action—then droop into limp compromises before shriveling into pathetic appeasements.

Take America’s worsening job crisis. Nearly 15 million people are unemployed, with 40 percent of them mired in long-term joblessness. Obama has eloquently addressed their plight and rightly proposed a $266 billion emergency response to put these folks to work. But he quickly caved in to do-nothing Republican ideologues, compromising his bill to mush to win a few GOP votes. To appease them, he slashed his jobs investment from $266 billion to $15 billion—a puny response that, at best, will create 250,000 jobs.

Responding to the public’s fury toward Wall Street bankers who are paying themselves billions of dollars in bonuses after wrecking our economy, Obama went after the greedheads, demanding restrictions to rein in “obscene” executive pay. Republicans refused to back real reform, so Obama has now shrunk from any boldness, meekly abandoning his moral outrage to beg for the wimpiest of wrist-slaps on miscreant bankers. “I, like most of the American people,” Obama said, “don’t begrudge people success or wealth. That is part of the free-market system.”

Hello … Wall Street’s bailout and luxurious bonuses didn’t come from the “free market”—they came from us taxpayers. Come on, Obama, grow a spine. Don’t just talk about change, dare to stand up for it.

Find more information on Jim Hightower’s work—and subscribe to his award-winning monthly newsletter, The Hightower Lowdown—at www.jimhightower.com