In a deeply misguided attempt to reassure people about the economy, President Bush showed his concern over the economy by delivering a 3 minute statement that was focused on the financial markets, and not the economic pains of ordinary people. As usual, Bush took no questions from the press, while the McCain campaign has said nothing about the economy this morning.
“In recent weeks, the federal government has taken extraordinary measures to address the challenges confronting our financial markets. We’ve taken control of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — the home finance agencies — to help promote market stability and to ensure they can continue to play a role in helping our housing market recover. This week, the Federal Reserve acted to prevent the disorderly failure of the insurance company AIG — a development that could have caused a severe disruption in our financial markets and threatened other sectors of the economy. Yesterday, the Security and Exchange Commission took action to strengthen investor protections and step up its enforcement actions against illegal market manipulation. Last night, the Federal Reserve, in coordination with central banks around the world, took a substantial step to provide additional liquidity to the U.S. financial system,” Bush said.
He continued, “These actions are necessary, and they’re important. And the markets are adjusting to them. Our financial markets continue to deal with serious challenges. As our recent actions demonstrate, my administration is focused on meeting these challenges. The American people can be sure we will continue to act to strengthen and stabilize our financial markets and improve investor confidence.”
Barack Obama released a statement after the president spoke saying that the current market turmoil is a threat to our economy, “The current financial market turmoil is a major threat to our economy. I recognize the need for today’s action by the Federal Reserve and their need to act quickly in a globally coordinated fashion to maintain the functioning of our financial system and the flow of credit to American households and businesses.”
I think everyone agrees that the bailouts have been necessary, but I think that people aren’t connecting the dots here. Bush and McCain are trying to separate the financial crisis from the overall economy. McCain has yet to release a statement on the president’s remarks today, and their silence is quite deafening. The problem with Bush’s comments this morning is that he is still focused on markets, not people.
Remember President Bush and John McCain have so much faith in the markets that they were pushing a plan to allow people to take their Social Security payroll tax and invest it in the markets. Can you imagine what would have happened to our economy and the entire Social Security system if Bush and McCain had gotten their way? Even as the economy melts, Bush is still more concerned about market stability than the woes of everyday people.
The election of John McCain would be the equivalent of replacing one out of touch president with another. If you believe that America should continue to borrow their way through war financing and corporate bailouts, then John McCain is your man. However, the recent economic crisis is the biggest sign yet that things can’t continue on their current path. Every day that the economy dominates the news, is another good day for Barack Obama.