Just got off the phone with former Iowa Governor/US Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack. During a discussion of federal government grants/efforts to expand the power grid so the electricity generated by wind turbines can actually be used, Vilsack offered up this:
“I think it sends a positive, confident message. I mean, Kay, the reality here is there are a lot of good things happening in the country today and we really have to get ourselves out of the funk that we’re in by focusing on those good things and making sure that we can do more of them more quickly, which is why the president’s proposed the Jobs Act, why we are trying to streamline the transmission line approval process and why we’re trying to get the free trade agreements passed.”
Made me think of the song “We Want the Funk” by George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic. Suffice it to say, Vilsack and the rest of the Obama Administration do not want the country to keep focusing on our collective funk.
I saw and heard the poster children for the national funk myself, firsthand, last night when I watched a focus group meet at a place called Essman Research in Des Moines. (The 90-minute session was organized by two firms, the Republican-leaning Public Opinion Strategies and the Democratic-leaning Momentum Strategies.)
The 10 women were characterized by the research firms as “Walmart Moms” and the group talked about their collective efforts to manage their family budgets, from bargain-shopping to extreme couponing. “I don’t even look if it’s not on sale,” one woman said, before revealing: “It kills me to spend $3 on toothpaste.” Three of the 10 have taken a second job to try to make ends meet.