“Think of America in 2012 as an apartment building. In the penthouse, people are living pretty well—while the folks in the lower floors are getting flooded out. Unfortunately, the elevator hardly works anymore. Mr. Obama's only solution is to throw rocks at the top floor. Mr. Romney needs to say how he intends to fix America's elevator.”
Brooks points out that:
• Median household income has fallen for five straight years
• The true level of unemployment is still near 15%
• The poverty rate is close to 12% and is not declining
He suggests three things:
• The need to commit to an education system that serves kids, not rent-seeking adults.
• A promise to fight for people of modest means who want to better their lives through hard work and private enterprise. At present, the government is working against them.
• Family, community and work ethic matters. Because the “predictors of a happy, successful life are cultural,” go on the offense regarding the culture of family and work.
Arthur Brooks is the president of the American Enterprise Institute and the author of the New York Times best-seller The Road to Freedom: How to Win the Fight for Free Enterprise (Basic Books, 2012). He can be reached through email@example.com (202.419.5213).
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