The Moose laments the lack of sober leadership.
Once again, the nation is faced with a major challenge. In the weeks immediately after 9/11, we joined together on a bi-partisan basis to meet the threat. Alas, that unity was short-lived. As we approach the fourth anniversary of the terrorist assault, the country must address a different type of attack - from mother nature. However, this time we are a nation bitterly divided along partisan lines.
Can our national officials now provide the unifying leadership the nation deserves and desperately needs? We must not only rebuild a region of our country and a a major city, but we are engaged in a war that is not going well. First and foremost, President Bush should show the way and put the national interest first and eschew the polarizing politics of the past several years.
The President's speech yesterday was oddly disconnected from the enormity and scope of the tragedy. It was less Churchillian and more the product of a bureaucratic committee. The speech was more worthy of a Commissioner of Public Works than a President of the United States. Perhaps a four week vacation dulls one's senses and political skills. For this crisis, there is no Giuliani-type presence.
As the Moose indicated yesterday, the nation's economy and budget will be under severe strain with the costs of disaster and war. Over the past few years, this "conservative" President and Congress has been on an intoxicated tax cutting and spending binge that we clearly can no longer afford. Evidently, however, as Washington cut revenues and spent freely, they failed to invest wisely in protecting the homeland.
The day of sobriety has arrived. If the Administration and leaders of Congress won't do it, a bi-partisan congressional coalition should forge a national interest budget that makes the necessary adjustments in fiscal policy to pay for the war and the rebuilding of the gulf states.
For too long, Washington D.C. has engaged in the fantasy politics of partisan polarization and big government plutocratic conservatism. America needs patriotic leadership that will address this national emergency.
The country is increasingly disconnected from Washington. Will our leadership class do anything in the coming weeks to restore confidence ? --