-- Franklin Roosevelt, acceptance speech
The daddy is aware that economists have made many recommendations to the U.S. government to deal with this financial crisis. They've made some good ones: Guaranteeing bank deposits, guaranteeing lending among banks, injecting capital to under-capitalized banks. But will these moves keep the government from sliding into an deeper recession? Of course not.
Thinking of what will really provide confidence and inspire Americans to invest and reinvest in the American economy, the daddy has two basic questions:
1. What about specific steps to keep people in their homes? The daddy is talking about bailing out homeowners by the president signing an executive order, authorizing providing banks a certain amount of money to specifically address housing, including providing a short-term freeze on foreclosures of owner-occupied properties, giving bankruptcy judges authority to change mortgages for primary residences, and restructuring sub-prime loans under terms that are affordable to them.2. What about specific moves to re-regulate the financial markets? The government has conceded that there were regulations that eliminated that made us more susceptible to a financial crisis. Why haven't they formed a committee to identify the regulations that were removed and made moves to reinstate them?
3. Beyond these moves, what about a plan that includes creating jobs for the poor and not just keeping jobs for criminals and criminal enablers on Wall Street? What about small businesses as well as huge corporations and global networks? What about infusing money into creating jobs such as working in parks and on the failing infrastructure in this country, i.e., what about a Rebuild America Package that would put money into the hands of all America, and not just a few people in banking? Where's our Roosevelt?
When Barack Obama becomes president, he will have many challenges. The financial crisis will be the most challenging of all. If he continues the Bush-Paulson top-down approach to the financial crisis, turning over monies to a small number people and institutions within the financial industry, he will likely fail middle and low-income America. On the other hand, if he comes up with a Roosevelt-like plan to rebuild America and maneuvers it through congress, he could be one of the U.S. greatest presidents since Roosevelt.
It will be up to us to push him to be our modern Roosevelt.