President Barack Obama spent Labor Day in Detroit being cheered by workers as he gave the crowd a taste of his Thursday jobs speech.
"We're going to see if congressional Republicans will put country before party," Obama challenged the GOP as the crowd chanted, "four more years!"
Of course, no one needed to wait until Thursday to know that congressional Republicans had no interest in placing the country before their party, or the billionaires their party existed to coddle, or the trans-national corporations their billionaires reigned over, or, for that matter, whatever pets Chinese leader Hu Jintao might have kept for his amusement.
Of course, as holding Obama and Democrats to a single White House term was the Republicans' top goal, no one needed to wait until Thursday to know that Republicans had no interest in creating jobs or resuscitating America's moribund economy. If the nation created jobs and resuscitated its economy, it would only undermine Republican ambitions.
Republicans had a vested interest in making sure the economy they crashed in 2008 under George W. Bush stayed crashed. Republicans had a vested interest in making sure any further damage they could inflict, they would inflict.
Republicans saw economic disaster as their ticket back into the Oval Office.
This was why Republicans slashed the timid $1.2 trillion 2009 stimulus plan to a virtually ineffectual $755 billion. This was why Republicans took the nation's debt ceiling hostage until they extracted trillions in spending cuts at a time when, as the consumer of last resort, the government should have been increasing spending to stimulate the economy, not slashing spending to depress the economy.
This was why, no matter what Obama proposed Thursday, Republicans would rant and howl and scream until they demagogued it out of existence.
Not only were Republicans determined to obstruct any initiative to revive the American economy, the GOP was determined to block renewal of the nation's existing transportation bill. Not only were Republicans determined to block the creation of new jobs, the GOP was determined to destroy another one million existing jobs.
"Almost one million workers could be in danger of losing their jobs over the next year," if Congress didn't renew the road- and bridge-building transportation bill expiring Sept. 30, Obama said
To which the Republicans would doubtless reply, "Duh!"
For America to stand any chance of staging a comeback, Obama and Democrats must forcefully denounce Republican plutocrat-coddling policies, and lay out a bold vision that features not just stimulus spending and job creation, but aggressive, progressive tax reform that breaks up the wealthy's stranglehold on the nation's finances and reinvigorates the nation's capital flow.
More than six in ten Americans wanted to tax the rich to pay down the nation's debts. More than seven in ten wanted to tax the rich to fund Social Security and Medicare. That was the way forward.
Americans wanted to reform the tax code so they could balance the budget from the bursting coffers of the wealthy and the big corporations, instead of on the backs of the poor and middle classes.
Republicans were united on coddling the rich with more and bigger tax breaks, while hiking payroll taxes on the middle class, and raising taxes on the poor.
"You say you're the party of tax cuts?" Obama said of Republicans. "Well, then prove you'll fight just as hard for tax cuts for middle class families as you do for oil companies and the most affluent Americans."
"If the goal is job creation, Leader (Eric) Cantor (R-VA) has long believed that there are better ways to grow the economy and create jobs than temporary payroll tax relief," Cantor spokesperson Brad Dayspring recently told the New York Times.
Instead of attempting snivelling bipartisanship, Obama should be laying out the real reasons for America's economic morass, spotlighting Republican plutocrat-coddling scams, and rooting out Republican saboteurs and their armies of hypnotized evangelical zombies.
That Republican leaders existed only to plunder America and hand its wealth to their corporate cronies and ultra-wealthy overlords was obvious. After thirty years of eviscerating the greatest nation on Earth, Republican tax cuts, tax breaks and tax subsides for the rich had reduced America's final fiscal reserves to the monies held in its Social Security trust funds, and its Medicare and Medicaid allotments.
That Republican leaders wanted to finish off Democrats so they could plunder those final reserves was obvious.
That Barack Obama wasn't daily trumpeting this message was a dumbfounding dereliction of political duty.
Obama should have daily been warning the phalanxes of loyal evangelical and white separatist Republican minions that the rich were only using them to plunder Social Security and Medicare. Obama should have daily been heralding that once the nation was plundered, the Republican elite would jet off to South Asia, or retreat behind domestic fortress strongholds, and abandon their ground troops to destitution, misery, disease and death in a toxic wasteland fouled by coal smoke and fracking fluid-tainted waters.
The Republican masses might not listen, as they've been conditioned by Republican evangelical controllers through hypnosis and auto-suggestion. Any EEG would reveal prayer and meditation placed GOP sycophants in the same suggestive state hypnotherapists used to facilitate behavior modification. It would take a full scale intervention and clinical deprogramming to break each evangelical Republican's conditioning.
But anyone not under Republican thrall would understand what the GOP was doing to their minions.
The Republican masses might not listen, as GOP cell leaders have exploited hate and racism to lash their innumerable phalanxes into empowering oil moguls and coal magnates and overseas plutocrats. But anyone not under Republican thrall would understand Republican perfidy.
Republicans leveraged thirty years of budget-slashing tax policy and thirty years of union-bashing labor policy to gut education and drive their base into a medieval intellectual wilderness where science was dismissed as charlatanism, evolution was denounced as heresy, and global climate change was ridiculed as crass propaganda attacking selfless, blameless oil and coal magnates. Republicans might have kept their masses isolated from science and history by home-schooling them on hate and misinterpretations of the Bible, but under the bright light of scrutiny, anyone not under Republican thrall would see Republican treachery.
It was time to challenge Republicans and Grover Norquist and the catechism that coddling the rich with ever more and ever greater tax cuts, tax breaks and tax subsidies was not, and never had been, the prescription for jobs, or a healthy, growing economy.
It was time Obama and Capitol Hill Democrats proved they, too, put the nation before the rich and the big corporations by taxing parasitic plutocrats and funding an America for the middle class, instead of plundering the middle class and funding an America for the rich.