Public versus private. Outsourcing versus in-sourcing. Offshore bank accounts versus global investments. The list goes on.
Why are we fighting these fights? Why are the political party leaders pointing fingers at their opponents when they are equally guilty? It is time the American taxpayer stands up and lets the "right" and the "left" know that the problem is the economy and a lack of jobs.
Recently, President Obama said that he had made a mistake by spending so much time dealing with policy rather than doing what he should have done - tell the American people a story. He told, Charlie Rose of CBS This Morning, "When I think about what we've done well and what we haven't done well," the president said, "the mistake of my first term - couple of years - was thinking that this job was just about getting the policy right. And that's important. But the nature of this office is also to tell a story to the American people that gives them a sense of unity and purpose and optimism, especially during tough times."
Getting the policy right means that there needs to be a policy! What is it, Mr. President? Where is your policy for bringing the jobs back to the United States of America?
When it comes to outsourcing jobs to China, Mitt Romney and Bain Capital are not the only ones who have done this. According to the U.S. China Business Council, United States corporations outsourced $3.6 billion in direct foreign investment to China in 2009; this is up from $2.9 billion in 2008.
President Obama's political supporters have called Romney a "corporate raider." However, Steve Rattner, the president's former car czar has said that Gov. Romney was the "furthest thing from a corporate raider."
Gov. Deval Patrick said "Bain was a perfectly fine company with a role in the private economy." When speaking specifically about Romney and Romney's business practices as they related to his time while at Bain Capital, President Bill Clinton said on CNN, "I don't think we ought to get in a position of saying this is bad work. This is good work."
Capitalism is not a bad thing; we need private enterprise in this country - that is what creates jobs.
The Republicans came out and announced that not only does Romney have overseas accounts, but so does Debbie Wasserman-Schultz. Don't you wish you had their money? Don't you wish you had enough money to be able to invest globally, secure funds in high interest and tax sheltered accounts that may or may not be off-shore?
How many of our elected officials have money in the Cayman Islands, Switzerland, or wherever? These issues of who has money where is not what the American people are worried about - we want jobs back on our soil. We want our economy to grow again.
Romney and President Obama need to focus on "the kitchen table" issues those of us without off shore accounts worry about. We see our local municipalities struggle with paying our police and fire employees a wage that is fair and reasonable. We see the private sector employee struggle to keep up with their insurance premiums, saving for their retirement and paying their taxes. Out of money, and with tax rates at an all time high, the Mayor of Scranton, Pennsylvania recently reduced the salaries of all municipal employees to minimum wage. A little extreme?
Will other municipalities and possibly states follow?
At what point does the taxpayer say enough, and just walk away? Is tax reform the answer? Who should reform it? Should we have a president who has a proven track record of business success take over? Should we give President Obama four more years to develop and implement a "plan?"
Or, should we just sit back and wait for the story to come our way and lull us to sleep with promises of hope and a better tomorrow?
It's time to stop pointing fingers and get down to the business of returning America to her greatness. The most recent jobs report showed us that the unemployment rate remained at above 8.2 percent, the economy has not rebounded, and our elected officials are arguing about who has the most money stashed in various bank accounts, and who has sent the most jobs to China.
Here's some advice, Romney: release the tax returns and tell us how you plan to bring jobs back to this country and get our economy on an upward swing. President Obama, stop pointing fingers and blaming the other guy (your predecessor included) and show us this plan you have spent the past three plus years focused on. We don't need a story, we need action, we need a leader if we are to get out of this situation that we are now in.
It's going to be a long couple of months before November.
Have a great day.
Vicki D. Westling is a Dunkirk resident, published author and an advocate for children and freedom.