Is it just this observer but what is one supposed to make of President Obama "conferring" yesterday with the likes of the CEO's from Xerox, Johnson and Johnson, American Express, U.S. Bancorp, Blackrock, Silver Lake Financial Management, Wells Fargo and United States Steel Corporation on how "to jump start a weak economy and reduce the jobless rate"?
As if this cast of characters (their names purposely omitted because they are inconsequential) and their mammoth companies didn't contribute to the "great recession" by outsourcing jobs, pay little or no taxes, get subsidized for moving their production operations to third world countries and pay no tariffs when their foreign made products are brought to this country because these companies are supposedly "American".
Or were companies that were at the heart of the financial implosion in the fall of 2008 with the collapse of the sub-prime mortgage market, the bundling of mortgages into securities that turned into toxic assets with derivatives scams and credit default swaps to unsuspecting institutional investors i.e. states, countries, pension funds and the like.
There's a certain surreal quality to these sorts of gatherings. Are they "real", was the president "serious" about wanting "their" input or was it just another political stunt to make it "appear" he's interested in getting people back to work and thus boost his re-election chances in 2012?
From here if you're really interested in boosting jobs and kick starting the moribund economy you'd gather economists and significant others who saw the precariousness of the housing bubble before it burst, the recklessness and excesses of the financial industry under deregulatory rules that contributed to its likely bursting, those like Dean Baker, Paul Krugman, Joseph Stiglitz, Brooksley Born, Elizabeth Warren, Robert Reich, et al.
They were prescient in their analysis before the wreckage happened and they now recognize the present economic reality and the need for increased federal spending at this time, not the austerity measures that are likely to make things worse. They call for stimulating the economy by rebuilding infrastructure, instituting programs reminiscent of the early FDR years with WPA and CCC type projects that would really boost employment. But instead Obama confers with laissez-faire capitalists.
So should we expect those chief execs. from those aforementioned behemoth corporations to offer real solutions to this president to rectify this nations economic woes? Please!