You’ve heard it from the pundits: “Obama is cloistered in the White House.” “He’s aloof.” “He’s in the bubble.” “He’s not connecting.” And that’s why one of my big goals this year was to get out and be among everyday, ordinary Americans – like the men and women of the Alfalfa Club.
And Speaker (John) Boehner, it is good to see you at the head table. I know how badly Eric Cantor wanted your seat. But, John, I want you to know: I am eager to work with members of Congress to be entertaining tonight. But if Congress is unwilling to cooperate, I will be funny without them.
I’d like to acknowledge a very good friend of mine – Warren Buffet’s secretary’s boss is in the house.
Marketwatch: Job growth was unchanged in August, the weakest performance in almost a year, the Labor Department said Friday. The weak report was lower than the 53,000 gain expected by Wall Street economists. A strike at Verizon Communications cut 45,000 from payrolls in the month. The unemployment rate held steady at 9.1% as expected.
Steve Benen: …. For the first time in six decades, the U.S. simply broke even – no jobs were lost in the overall economy, and no jobs were gained…
…. It’s worth noting that the figures are skewed a bit by the Verizon strike, which has since been resolved. The labor dispute temporarily subtracted 45,000 jobs from the economy, so when that’s taken into consideration, the overall economy actually added 45,000 jobs in August, which was roughly in line with expectations.
But that’s cold comfort in the midst of a prolonged jobs crisis … This report reinforces the impression that the economy is just stalled, waiting for someone to give it a boost …. It’s a boost, of course, that congressional Republicans are desperate to prevent.
…. August, to be sure, was a brutal month all around. Wall Street took wild swings; Republican antics led to a downgrade in U.S. debt; the European debt crisis intensified, etc. The fact that hiring effectively halted in the month is not shocking.
But it is painful, and serves as yet another wake-up call to anyone who’ll listen: we have a jobs crisis, not a deficit crisis. If our political system were in any way sane, elected leaders would look at these numbers and conclude that the economy desperately needs an immediate jolt. Job creation should be the first, and arguably only, priority on the minds of policymakers.
Steve Benen: When the jobs reports were looking quite good in the early spring, Republican leaders were eager to take credit for the positive numbers they had nothing to do with. After all, as far as GOP officials were concerned, their mere presence in the House majority was enough to inspire job creators everywhere.
But if Republicans demanded credit for the job totals in the spring, these same Republicans are desperate to avoid blame for job totals in the summer. It’s a nice little scam Republicans have put together: when more jobs are being created, it’s proof they’re right; when fewer jobs are being created, it’s proof Democrats are wrong.
A comment left on the blog today, in response to that Texas interview with the President, by a Linda Van de Riet from Missouri.
There’s also, coincidentally, a Linda Van de Riet on the Missouri Jefferson County Republican Central Committee. A relation, maybe?
You know, these people will be consumed by their own hate one day. Hopefully.
PS Another coincidence! There’s a Linda Van de Riet from Missouri on Facebook:
I see she’s ‘interested’ in God. But not in His teachings, it seems.
Blackman reminded me of this rally in the comments – wow, that day must really have pained Ms Van de Riet:
Sen. Barack Obama waves as he arrives at a rally of 100,000 supporters in St. Louis, Mo., Saturday, Oct. 18, 2008
Theo67: I’m grateful to see this nonsense from these types, because it reminds me how desperate this fight is for those who seek goodness and light. There are many who are wallowing in darkness, consumed by hate, and deceiving themselves that they are somehow fighting a “godly” fight – yet, as evidenced by this woman, the hate just spews forth from them – telling us the real story. We can never let these creatures win. This is not just a political fight. It’s much more than that, and I think it’s a battle that’s been raging for a long time.
I’m encouraged when I think of those who had to put their very lives in harm’s way, and those who still do in places far away, simply to gain the rights of being treated like human beings. Watching clips from the Civil Rights struggle, the clips from those fighting for their freedom now in the Middle East… if all we have to do is read nasty words from these lost individuals, then we have it so much easier. It does take a little away from your spirit each time you’re confronted with this stuff, but we can replenish our spirits quite easily because of … the many billions of people around the world who are not consumed by hate.