Varieties of exhaustion
Having become the de facto leader of the Republican party, at least when it comes to fiscal policy, Obama is now turning—again (didn’t he do this before? I recall some nonsense about a “hard pivot”)—to job creation. And he’s going to do what needs to be done: take a bus tour of the Midwest and do a few photo ops at factories. You might think that with a stalling economy and a high unemployment rate that could start drifting higher any month now, that he might want to try something more aggressive than hopping a ’hound. But no: “Mr. Obama is unlikely to unveil any major new stimulus proposals, since he has exhausted most of the obvious policy options.”
A very obvious option would be a jobs program. But no—the de facto leader of the Republican party can’t even mention that. The best he can do is more free trade agreements and patent law reform. This guy makes you nostalgic for Bill Clinton—or at least the late 1990s. The dot.com era was nuts, but it was a helluva lot more fun than this hair shirt epoch.