It's a crying shame that it took the election of homophobe Republican Cosmo centerfold Scott Brown in Massachusetts—all but handed to him by idiotic Democratic candidate Martha Coakley—to wake up the White House: Americans have more important issues on their minds than silly "green initiatives," and healthcare reform is already so watered down by Republicans that any attempt to force the uninsured to carry their equal load was washed away in the bureaucracy. Torture remains intact and equal rights for gays (Don't Ask Don't Tell, Prop 8, marriage) are in tatters: in worse shape than they were a year ago.
Instead, unemployment is locked in at 10%, companies aren't hiring and businesses continue to close their doors, as the recession edges on, despite rosy reports to the contrary that spew out of the White House's ass every month.
According to an AP report today, "The White House in the new year has begun focusing greater attention on the nation's angst over unemployment persisting near 10%, government expansion, Wall Street excesses and federal deficits."
Well, it's about fucking time. I'll give Obama credit for extending unemployment benefits, staying taxation on the first $2,400 of said benes, and for temporarily bringing down COBRA payments... but after 10 months without a job, there must be offensive action, not defensive measures that leave us courting poverty for another month, instead of striding forward with lives and careers.
Could Republicans have done any better? God, no. Can you imagine if McCain & Palin were charged with fixing the mess Bush left? They'd probably have just finished decorating their offices about now. But we elected Obama because we believed he could rise above partisan politics and get the job done. At the year one mark, I wonder if he has the cajones to accomplish anything. Feels like politics, as usual.
Meanwhile, more fun news: New York City’s unemployment rate jumped to 10.6% in December, the highest since 1993, according to the state Labor Department. The rate hit 11.7% in September 1992, its highest since January 1976. New York state’s jobless rate matched its highest in 26 years, reaching 9% in December. The national jobless rate was 10% in December.