By Arizona Chamber of Commerce & Industry Chairman Mark Dobbins
I believe I have observed a new truth. That is, the 2012 US Presidential campaign seems only to mock economic reality.
Reality for the vast majority of Americans is neither politically left or right. The people I know and those I meet in this great state of Arizona seem to be reasonably levelheaded when it comes to the basics of the economy. They want a decent well-paying job, a sound and affordable education for their children, a level financial playing field where healthcare and homeownership are a given for working families and not an unreachable goal.
Now being the eternal optimist, I have set myself a target to listen more closely for which candidate of either party who will show reality-based paths to a meaningful and sustainable economic recovery.
Three years ago the vision was hope and change. What we got from a business standpoint was a politically correct face to the nation’s wellbeing, while setting the wolves of big government regulars like the EPA and NLRB loose to impede or stop the recovery process in the name of social ideology.
For me, the issue is not ideology. The issue is not substituting one set of personal beliefs for another. We need strong and effective leadership. I don’t believe partisan politics bears any resemblance to statesmanship or effective leadership. The issue is what is economic reality for early 21st century Americans. Is there someone out there who can lead us to address:
- National security- It would be wonderful if this was not a necessary top priority.
- Affordable Healthcare – One size does not fit all.
- Affordable Relevant /Education systems- Over 30% of Arizona’s high school students fail to graduate. The nearly 70% who do may not have relevant job skills.
- Homeowner debt and the mortgage crisis
Well, so much for my national observations. We have our own heavy load here at home in Arizona to balance our fragile recovery. Let’s help set the bar high by addressing economic realities as our primary focus to speed a full recovery and create the foundation for a more resilient future economy. Let’s walk the talk and give full attention to issues that have a direct and meaningful relationship to creating high wage jobs. Together we will build a better Arizona.