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Desperate Times In Detroit

President Obama was in Detroit for Labor Day, where he fed his union-organized crowd a red-meat attack on Republicans. First, though, Jimmy Hoffa, Jr. warmed up the crowd. Hoffa’s viciousness came through, to a degree that makes you wonder how he has managed to stay out of the penitentiary all these years. Breitbart TV has the highlights, as Hoffa declares “war” on the Tea Party “sons of bitches” and vows to take America back:

Did Obama disapprove of Hoffa’s incendiary message? Apparently not; he mentioned Hoffa only to say that he is proud of him. But, what the heck: he sat through “God DAMN America” for twenty years without protest, so I guess he can put up with Tea Party “sons of bitches,” too.

News accounts of Obama’s Detroit appearance have generally failed to mention Hoffa’s threats or Obama’s acquiescence in them, but rather have focused on Obama’s challenge to Republicans, as in this Associated Press account:

President Barack Obama used a boisterous Labor Day rally to put congressional Republicans on the spot, challenging them to place the country’s interests above all else and vote to create jobs and put the economy back on a path toward growth. “Show us what you’ve got,” he said.

“Vote to create jobs?” Actually, the GOP is prepared to do that, but Harry Reid would never let their proposals come to the floor of the Senate; and if they somehow passed, Obama would veto them.

Obama said roads and bridges nationwide need rebuilding and more than 1 million unemployed construction workers are itching to “get dirty” making the repairs. He portrayed Congress as an obstacle to getting that work done.

This is Alice-in-Wonderland stuff. Does Obama seriously think there is anyone who doesn’t recall that just two years ago, Congress–far from being an “obstacle”–borrowed a trillion dollars from our children and gave it to Obama, ostensibly to spend in large part on roads and bridges? Only to find–ha-ha–that those projects “weren’t as shovel-ready as we thought.” (When I say “anyone,” of course, I mean sentient American citizens, not reporters and editors.) Pretty much everyone regards that “stimulus” as an abject failure, and only a hardy few hyper-partisans–Paul Krugman comes to mind–try to sell the absurd claim that the only problem with the “stimulus” is that it wasn’t big enough. So now we are supposed to waste another trillion dollars?

“Given the urgency of this moment, given the hardship that many people are facing, folks have got to get together. But we’re not going to wait for them [i.e., the Republicans].”

That is really a very funny line. Obama has been in office now for going on three years. For the first two years he had Congress all to himself. So what were Obama and the Democrats doing for all those months? Waiting for the Republicans? Did the nation’s economic crisis only start to become urgent when Republicans took the House last November?

The AP reporter somehow managed to pass this on with a straight face:

Aides say Obama will mount a fall campaign centered on the economy, unveiling different elements of his agenda heading into 2012.

Sure. Obama plans to run on his great economic record. Actually, I think Obama’s campaign will be “centered on” smears against his Republican opponent.

In the meantime, my suggestion to any Republican is that he respond to Obama’s challenge by saying, “We’re not going to double down on failure.”

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