The most recent economic news is pretty darn grim. The number of people filing new claims for unemployment benefits has increased, the housing market in America is depressed, and the stock market has just experienced its worst quarter in some time, with the Dow down more than 10 percent. When you combine that with the sharp drop in consumer confidence, you get a recipe for the dreaded “W”, or double-dip recession.
Let’s hope that the current bleak outlook doesn’t continue; we don’t need the 401(k) plans and net worths of Americans to take yet another hit. The tenuousness of the American economy, however, just indicates how important it is that our political leaders focus on getting our economy out of the dumper and back to serving as an engine of job creation. We shouldn’t be concerned with “cap and trade,” or “green jobs,” or new tax burdens to finance other policy initiatives right now. Bill Clinton’s reminder has never been truer than it is now: “It’s the economy, stupid.”