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Time to Mothball the White House and Go On The Road, Mr. President

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People are mad as hell and they’re not going to take it anymore.

Which is about as close to coherence as the populist groundswell is likely to get. The President’s failure to get ahead of the tidal wave has really hurt him. His Spock-like reasonableness has not served him well. His soaring rhetoric is falling on deaf ears. Worse still, after the debacle in Massachusetts, tomorrow’s State of the Union address and the administration’s worrying signs of rightward retrenchment are unlikely to improve the President’s standing.

There are a ton of bold solutions out there in opinion-land. Many of them make great sense, but as our politics rushes headlong into an ephemeral haze, symbolism might be as – if not more – important than substance.

My interest is in stopping the rot that seems to be invading the psyche of this young adminsistration, which seems like a hot-shot rookie that’s just hit his first batting slump and just can’t seem to find a way out.

To continue the baseball metaphor, it’s often ideas out of left field that end the slump. A bunt single that you leg out, a goattee grown or shaved, the blessing of your favorite bat by your favorite zen master.

So in the spirit of strange, I suggest the President give the following a shot.

Mothball the White House. What? I hear you say. Yup. Leave it behind, and go on a “Main Street” road trip. Run your office out of Air Force One as you tour the country for six months. Go to the diners, gas stations and big box stores. Talk to the people, and hear what life’s really like in this recession. Find out what they want, ask their advice, and conduct the people’s business on the road.

What would this “Main Street Tour” achieve? A huge amount. It would put the President back in campaign mode where he’s at his best. It would represent the ‘change’ in the way politics is done. It would enable a dispassionate president to find his passion and connect with the people. And it would enable him to recapture some of the populist wind that’s been owned – absurdly – by Scott Brown and his truck, “Independent Conservatives”, the rest of GOP and of course Tea Party Loons.

And what’s the message that he’s got to take along with him? Tax incentives to create jobs. Oh, and sticking it Wall Street with regulation that will protect America from any future rapaciousness by the “fat cats”.

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Written by coolrebel

January 26, 2010 at 12:11 pm

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