President Obama has called the Great Recession our "Sputnik moment" and he has talked up competitiveness in recent days, in last week’s weekly address:
"We're going to have to out-innovate, we're going to have to out-build, we're going to have to out-compete, we're going to have to out-educate other countries."
He went into greater depth even before that during a speech in Schenectady, N.Y., hosted by his new competitiveness czar, GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt:
But will this time be any different from any other time?
In November, I wrote about the new wind blowing through the Silicon Valley, through the SIA and about George Will’s speech at the group’s annual dinner. Business leaders seem to have found some resolve after two years of hiding in their foxholes. And some of you wondered aloud in the comments section whether it's time to get serious about fielding more engineer-candidates for political office.
Diego Vasquez, Community College student (Phoenix)
Mikayla Nelson, High School Freshman (Billings, MT)
Time will tell if the president and Congress really get what it means to be competitive or they just know how to assemble convenient political props for a live TV event.
I look forward to hearing tonight and tomorrow your impressions on the president's address and whether our competitiveness really will get a boost from administrative and congressional policy initiatives.