McCain gave a somber and gracious concession speech. I’m sure that most people watched as he handed the victory over to Obama. I was almost proud to hear him speak. The commercials being run by the GOP were equating Obama with terrorism – so classy.
It’s time to look forward; Obama has his work cut out for him.
- He has to reshape the war on terror. Clinton struck at Al Qaeda with precision. Small forces against a hidden enemy – a single missile strike against a single terrorist training camp, not rolling into countries for revenge becoming the terrorists ourselves. This is what Obama needs to do as well.
- He must attack the economy aggressively. The $700b bailout needs to be reconsidered. Keeping homeowners in their homes will keep banks from failing and keep our neighborhoods from becoming a swath of crack houses. It has to be done sensibly. Second and third homes, fraudulent mortgage applicants and investors cannot be the beneficiaries of any homeowner support plan. Close the loophole of unregulated products and let those companies that chose to play in the waters where no lifeguard was on duty drown. You cannot have it both ways.
While we are on this topic, let’s revisit the unrealistic expectation that we can significantly raise the homeownership rate. Alan Greenspan has recently stated that he believes that he may have been part of the “housing bubble” by keeping interest rates too low for too long. Rates should be sensible, but the Fed must remain independent. Trying to shoehorn anyone who wants to buy a home into a loan has to be stopped. Banks, mortgage companies and brokers must be held to a higher standard. They know more than the average home buyer and the onus is on them to be responsible.
- He must aggressively attack our dependence on foreign oil. This means funding for what he has called the green collar worker. Wind power, solar power and garbage to crude conversion plants. Drilling won’t do it – that only delays the inevitable. Solar, through photo voltaic and solar concentration has huge potential. It’s time to turn the potential energy into kinetic energy and stop wasting it. Supporting alternative electricity means rebuilding our infrastructure to handle the loads – that means jobs.
- He must undo the damage to our reputation around the world and here at home; restore our rights ripped away under the so-called Patriot Act. Return unjustifiably held “enemy combatants” to their homes. Give them a check for their “troubles” and ask their forgiveness.
Once those things are done, he can look at the rolling back the Bush tax plan and comprehensive health care.