Yesterday, President Obama gave a widely publicized speech at Georgetown University on the state of his administration’s efforts to face the nation’s economic challenges. In laying out his vision for our economic recovery, the President alluded to a parable in the Sermon on the Mount. Likening the nation’s task to that of a man who must build his house upon a firm rock — and not sand — President Obama identified the five pillars that will support his house, the economic recovery, thus:
It’s a foundation built upon five pillars that will grow our economy and make this new century another American century.
Number one, new rules for Wall Street that will reward drive and innovation, not reckless risk-taking.
Number two, new investments in education that will make our workforce more skilled and competitive.
Number three, new investments in renewable energy and technology that will create new jobs and new industries.
Number four, new investments in health care that will cut costs for families and businesses.
And, number five, new savings in our federal budget that will bring down the debt for future generations.
… that’s the new foundation we must build. That’s our house built upon a rock. That must be our future — and my administration’s policies are designed to achieve that future.
What’s missing? Not a single reference to the Employee Free Choice Act. Getting too deep into tea leaves is rarely a fruitful exercise, and the Act’s proponents have shown this past few weeks that they will not give up so easily. Still, the fact that in a "major" speech on the economy President Obama declined to so much as mention EFCA — let alone declare it a priority — significantly undermines the most recent labor talking point: that EFCA would actually aid in the economic recovery by "strengthening the middle class."
- "Obama Refocuses on the Economy" — Washington Post’s 44 blog
- "Obama’s Economic Sermon on the Mount" — The Nation
- "Analysis: Obama Georgetown Speech" — U.S. News’ Capitol Commerce blog
- "Morning Skim: Reviews for Obama’s ‘Sermon on the Mount‘" — NYT’s The Opinionator blog