Friday, August 01, 2003

John, who was recently "downsized" from a software company, followed President Bush's economic team (Treasury Secretary John Snow and Commerce Secretary Don Evans) around this week and even was able to talk to Snow directly:

"What's your story?" Snow says.

I tell him I was laid off last week and saw that he was coming and I thought it was important to come here and let him see the reality of what's going on in today's economy.

"What industry were you in?"

"Most recently the software industry."

"That's a particularly vulnerable part of the economy."

"Yes, well, I need a new job and it doesn't look good."

"Just wait," he said. "The first tax cuts haven't really taken effect. So just wait... the second tax cut... well, it won't hit the economy for several months, but I'm sure you'll get a job."

"But, but... we've already lost over 900,000 jobs just since March first... a job at Wal-Mart just won't support my family."

"Just wait, I'm sure you'll find a job."

At that moment the car in front of me pulled ahead for their order and John stepped back from my window. The SS agents signalled for me to pull ahead.

"Just wait?!" I've got a $350 payment for this minivan, a morgage and two kids! Here's a guy who drives a few hundred miles to see you, four days after he's been laid off, and you tell him to "just wait?"

Boy I'd like to see those words on a PR banner behind Snow at the podium:
Jobs and Growth: Just Wait.
Secretary Snow later mentioned the conversation to reporters.

I found out about this story via Metapop.

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