Matthews: Obama faces a ‘critical moment of crisis’


Let me finish tonight with this: The President of the United States now faces a critical moment of crisis. Today the stock market dropped like a runaway elevator.  The head of the International Monetary Fund said the world economy is entering “a dangerous phase.”  She said that nations need credible plans to get their debt under control.

So there you have the bind that the president and this country are in. Demand is dropping for goods and services. The head of the IMF is calling for governments to drop demand further by cutting their spending plans.

There’s the rub: how do you stop the drop in demand, the drop that is heading us into a recession, and at the same time drop the government’s own demand for goods and services by cutting spending?

So we have to choose.  And we need the president to choose.  The time has come to stop trying to have it both ways. If the best policy of the United States right now is to cut our debt, the president should lead the way - pushing for hikes in taxes, cuts in spending. 

If the goal is to cut the deficits, he should be leading the charge on both fronts. He should be the leader in this country’s fight to close deficits and cut the burden of debt. But if the danger is recession, an across-the-board drop in spending on the part of consumer, business, and government, then he has to be leading the charge to stop it. 

He needs to be finding, pushing, and demanding more government spending. He needs to resuscitate the American economy with a jolt of adrenaline before it falls completely dormant. Right now, the country is not sure which way he is leading us.

Ask yourself, the question. Is he out there calling for tax hikes on the wealthy and spending cuts in Social Security and Medicare to go along with them?  Yes.  We heard him doing that this week.

Or is he out there pushing to pump up government spending to get the economy hopping again?  Is he pushing to get money moving through the pipes, getting it into people’s pockets so they’ll start buying again?   Yes, he’s out there on that bridge today pushing for just that.

So which is it?  Full speed ahead or “man the pumps!?”  I think we need a certain trumpet.  I think the stock market is saying that. I know I’m thinking it.  



Barack Obama

Matthews: Obama faces a 'critical moment of crisis'