President Obama's First Step: Reset ExpectationsPosted Nov 05, 2008 12:15pm EST by Henry Blodget in Newsmakers, Recession, Election
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From ClusterStock, Nov. 5, 2008:
If President Elect Obama were the incoming CEO of a corporation, he would now be preparing for the first act of his tenure: A massive write-off of the mountains of rotted junk buried on the company's balance sheet and an announcement that recovery will take a long, long time.
This flush would clear the way for several years of better than expected results. It would also take advantage of the new leader's one chance to blame the sorry state of the organization on his sorry predecessor.
President Obama began this process last night, in his victory speech, when he noted that restoring the country's health might take more than a term. In the next few weeks, he should go well beyond this:
The deficit will be more than $1 trillion a year for several years
The country needs a massive new fiscal stimulus
The housing market will continue to decline through at least 2010
Interest rates and taxes will eventually have to rise (after the economy stabilizes)
Weak corporations have to be allowed to fail
Millions of homeowners will lose their house
Unemployment will probably rise to 10%
The government simply cannot "bail the country out" -- not because it lacks the will, but because it lacks the power
In short, Obama needs to acknowedge reality, erring on the side of overstating the problems and challenges, and he needs to prepare the country for several tough years. Because if he doesn't, within six months of his taking office, the country will have forgotten all about the prior administration and will instead be blaming everything on him.
WASHINGTON – Barack Obama seized command of the race for the White House Tuesday night, defeating John McCain in Ohio and building a near insurmountable Electoral College advantage as he bid to become the first black president. Fellow Democrats gained strength in both houses of Congress.
Obama's Ohio victory denied McCain particularly precious territory. No Republican has ever won the presidency without the state.
The 47-year-old Illinois senator watched returns at a downtown Chicago hotel, then went home to a family dinner after a marathon campaign across 49 states and 21 months.
A jubilant crowd of thousands gathered in Grant Park across town on an unseasonably mild night. Cheers went up each time Obama was announced the winner in another state. The roar was particularly loud when Pennsylvania fell — the Democratic-leaning state where McCain had tried hardest to break through.