In his speech about the economy on Thursday, President Barack Obama had never sounded so presidential, if you define “sounding presidential” as already sounding frustrated by the glacial pace of Congress.
“I don’t believe it’s too late to change course, but it will be if we don’t take dramatic action as soon as possible. If nothing is done, this recession could linger for years,” said the president-elect, appearing to predict inaction on a plan he hasn’t even sent to Congress yet.
Today, the president-elect got even more evidence that it’s getting worse before it gets better. Unemployment has reached a 16 year high.
But a glance at the morning papers proves that Congress is hitting the ground running on threats to our country’s survival. The top Republican on the House Energy and Commerce Committee (Commerce. That has something to do with the economy, right?) announced he’s filing legislation to get rid of the Bowl Championship Series. “There’s no way you can say that whoever wins tonight’s game is demonstrably better than USC, Texas or Utah,” Joe Barton said in a telephone interview a few hours before Thursday’s kickoff, the Associated Press reported.. President Obama is asking Congress to delay implementation of digital television transmission. It was supposed to take place on February 17, a date that the TV folks have been warning us about since the last fly-by of Halley’s Comet. But the agency that had been sending out coupons for converter boxes ran out in December because of the last-minute crush of requests. And why the last-minute crush of requests? For the same reason that you, and I, and Aunt Maude (who’ll be wondering where her stories went) never did our homework on Friday nights. Waiting until the last minute is the American way.
About the blogger
Bob Collins has been with Minnesota Public Radio since 1992, emigrating to Minnesota from Massachusetts. He was senior editor of news in the ’90s, ran MPR’s political unit, created the MPR News regional website, invented the popular Select A Candidate, started the two most popular blogs in the history of MPR and every day laments that his Minnesota Fantasy Legislature project never caught on.