The 'New Normal' for the economy
I must have missed the memo! You know, the memo about the "New Normal" set of economic conditions. All along, I thought we were in a recession, or at least a very uncertain and slow growth set of economic conditions. And, I believed it was the objective to emerge from the malaise in which we have found ourselves.
Reading the words of wisdom from the economic guru's, especially those who are left leaning, we are told the miserable economic growth rates of 1.5% and unemployment numbers of 9.5%, are not trouble, but a "New Normal". Nice and tidy, and it sounds, well, not too bad. Sort of like old Europe and the lost decade of Japan in the 90's. After all, isn't this what we have been set up for? So many of the liberals have envied old Europe so much, they want to be just like them. So what do we get, a New Normal, not a bad economy?
What's more, this fits in so nicely with the Obama play book. First, we dismiss American Exceptionalism as a quaint but out of date notion, not relevant in this complex world. Further, the idea of American uniqueness has been trashed during the various Obama apology tours throughout Europe and the Middle East. Finally, as the Administration remains absolutely clueless as to policies and programs needed to correct our near recession condition, continues to be fully committed to a heavy government funded and controlled social agenda and the high taxes to support it, the "New Normal" works perfectly. And the plus, it is so Euro.
The only problem, the folks in the cities in the hinterlands are not buying the concept of a New Normal. They want better than mediocre, they want the new jobs that come with a robust recovery, not 99 weeks of unemployment. It was not too long ago that a commercial appeared on television that mocked the idea of a person aspiring to be mediocre or average. Over the past many years in the education business, we have witnessed the dumbing down of expectations with grade inflation and a perverse aversion to failure. Trophies are awarded, not for achievement, just for showing up., Rather than striving for excellence, we eliminated the option of failure. The question for today, are we willing to accept a New Normal in economic performance? I think not and hope not.
The Glen Beck rally in Washington this weekend is an indicator that we are not, and the Tea Party movement is further evidence that a strong segment of the population is not willing to settle for a European style of economic performance with systemic low growth, high unemployment and high taxes.
American exceptionalism is an idea that has remained relevant and is the catalyst that motivates the people to protest what is going on in our government. November is the chance to prove it.