While we’re all weeping in our lattes about how Obama isn’t doing what we want him to do or he’s not doing it fast enough, David Brooks talks about short term and long term and reminds us of a few things:
“It occurs to me that the Obama administration has done a number of (widely neglected [I think he means underreported]) things that scramble the conventional categories and that are good policy besides. The administration has championed some potentially revolutionary education reforms. It has significantly increased investments in basic research. It has promoted energy innovation and helped entrepreneurs find new battery technologies. It has invested in infrastructure — not only roads and bridges, but also information-age infrastructure like the broadband spectrum.
These accomplishments aren’t big government versus small government; they’re using government to help set a context for private sector risk-taking and community initiative. . . . These long-term problems, Obama could say, won’t be solved either with centralized government or free market laissez-faire. Just as government laid railroads and built land grant colleges in the 19th century to foster deep growth, the government today should be doing the modern equivalents.”