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Must-Read Op-Eds for Tuesday, April 10, 2012

ut reports from the ground say the opposition is not receiving anything close to the support it would need to change the military balance. ...

HOW ROMNEY CAN SOLVE HIS WOMAN PROBLEMBY MICHAEL GERSONWASHINGTON POST[W]omen and independents want some reassurance that Republicans give a damn about someone other than Republican primary voters. It is not a high bar. But Romney needs to start somewhere — to pick an issue of justice and equity that he cares about deeply. ... A successful presidential candidate must have a compelling economic message. But he must also be able to stand before the nation and say: “I will serve all American citizens, whether they support me or not. My conscience, my faith, my view of America requires it. It hurts us all when any are hopeless.” One of the best ways to appeal to women — and to humans, for that matter — is to show some humanity.

THE TWO ECONOMIESBY DAVID BROOKSNEW YORK TIMESDemocrats are more optimistic that government can enhance the productivity of the global sectors of the economy while redirecting their benefits. ... I don’t know which coalition will gain the upper hand. But I do think today’s arguments are rooted in growing structural rifts. There’s an urgent need to understand the interplay between the two different sectors. I’d also add that it’s not always easy to be in one of those pockets — including the media and higher education — that are making the bumpy transition.

Must-Read Op-Eds for Monday, April 9, 2012

A ROCKIER PATHWAY TO WORKEDITORIALNEW YORK TIMESPresident Obama has also proposed greater consolidation of training programs, but he wants to spend an additional $2.8 billion a year on these programs. By contrast, last year, the House proposed cutting $2.5 billion, a pretty good indicator of how much it could slash when it puts in the details on this year’s budget. There are six million more unemployed people now than there were in 2006, when the decline in training programs began. Training centers and community colleges are filled to bursting. Mr. Romney, Mr. Ryan and their party have made it clear that giving the unemployed a pathway back to work is an extremely low priority.THE U.N.'S FAILED PLAN FOR SYRIAN PEACEEDITORIALWASHINGTON POSTThe inescapable reality is that Mr. Assad will go on killing unless and until he is faced with a more formidable military opposition. That is why the shortest way to the end of the Syrian crisis is the one Mr. Obama is resisting: military support for the opposition and, if necessary, intervention by NATO. The administration has been inching in the right direction ... [b]ut reports from the ground say the opposition is not receiving anything close to the support it would need to change the military balance. ... A civil war is taking place in Syria. Mr. Obama may believe that by fleeing from leadership through figments such as the Annan plan, he is avoiding “militarization.” In fact, he is ensuring that thousands more people will die.OBAMA'S REVENUE SOUPEDITORIALWALL STREET JOURNALThe data clearly show that the overall economy is the single biggest factor in capital-gains realizations and revenue. But the data also show that time and again revenue has multiplied despite a lower rate, and arguably because of it. ... In our view the optimal capital-gains tax rate is one that leads to the most capital investment, jobs and wealth gains for American workers. That economically optimal rate is somewhere close to zero and would lead to more overall tax revenue as the economy grew faster. But if Congress wants a capital-gains tax, history suggests the revenue maximizing rate is closer to 15% than to 23.8%.THE U.N. DEPLORESEDITORIALWALL STREET JOURNALSyrian government forces have been bombing and killing as much of the opposition as they can before a U.N.-negotiated ceasefire deadline Tuesday, and on Monday its troops shot five people at a refugee camp across the Syrian border inside Turkey and a cameraman who was standing in Lebanon. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon quickly issued a statement saying he "deplores" the shootings. That will have them shaking in Damascus. ... Give the Annan mission credit for one thing: It is demonstrating again that without U.S. leadership the United Nations is useless in the face of the world's determined thugs. Make that worse than useless, because its illusion of diplomatic progress serves as cover for the Assads of the world to do more killing. Your move, President Obama.ECONOMIC HELP FOR OBAMABY JOE SCARBOROUGHPOLITICOThe Wall Street Journal editorial page usually has little good to say about President Obama's economic agenda. But today's Journal was brimming with good news for a White House facing reelection during tough economic times. From front to back, the WSJ was filled with upbeat economic news. Considering Friday's disappointing jobs numbers, the good news must have been a welcome respite for the White House. ... If opinion writers spend the next year haggling over who should get the credit for America's improving economy, Barack Obama will be a happy man and Republicans will start planning for 2014.