As President Obama travels after his State of the Union speech to rally support for his proposals, he must also deal with a rising mood of pessimism about the economy. Fear of the future must not be allowed to feed on itself.
Barack Obama is using his fifth State of the Union message to kick off a presidential road tour. He will try to rally popular support for his ideas on job creation. But Mr. Obama may want to also address something other than his ideas.
Many Americans are still extremely concerned about their economic future despite an official end to the Great Recession three years ago. The mood is more cope than hope.
Here is one revealing statistic: About 1 in 4 adults has recently sought professional help for stress or depression. And other polls reveal an urgent need for the president to stem a contagion of fear.
Nearly two-thirds of Americans say they will never financially recover. More than half think the economy is still in recession – despite steady if slow growth – and that a full recovery will take at least six years. Only 1 in 5 says the next generation will have better job and career opportunities.