So, Mr. Speaker, we have opportunities, there is no doubt. This country does, as the President said, have the underpinnings to perform better than any economy in the world. But the one thing the President fails to realize is the most important underpinning of that economy is middle-class American workers, the ones who for 12 years of Republican rule, 6 years of total rule by this ideology have suffered and seen their quality of life decrease dramatically.

The good news is, it is starting to change. College is becoming more affordable under the new Democratic Congress, gas prices will start to be adjusted as we start to put research dollars in to moving towards cellulosic ethanol, fast growing poplar trees, switch grass, things that are out there that we can get to. These are the types of things that are going to happen. Our manufacturers in Detroit have already caught on. We are seeing hybrid vehicles now that you can actually buy. We are starting to see Detroit want to compete again. And, guess what? Where was that invisible hand? Where was that market when we were creating cars that got 15 miles to the gallon? When they start competing with everybody else in the world, we will start being able to get to where we need to go.

This is an economy that can come back from this, but it will not come back with special interest policies that care nothing about what happens to the middle class, care nothing about the everyday things that people are going through.

And the last thing I would say on this is, when I listen to what President Bush says, it reminds me of the time, and I think about this, when his father went to the supermarket about 2 decades ago. And I remember this very clearly, I was in high school, and it was a big story on the news because the first President Bush was fascinated that they had scanners to scan the price. Now, every American in the country had seen that since the early 1970s. They had seen them in their local supermarkets for a long time. But the President was flabbergasted that that would happen.

My suggestion would be, there is a Safeway not far, the one I shop at down here, that the President get out there. He can take some security down there and he can go through there, and he can start to see what people are going through. On the way back, he needs to fill up. And then he might want to swing by and check the tuition costs at a university, even a State-run school. And then he would start to understand, saying things like: This economy is fine and that it is a little bit bumpy.

Losing your home is not bumpy. Not being able to go to college is not bumpy. Not having a retirement account that you can retire with dignity is not bumpy. That is a fundamental failure of leadership. It is a fundamental failure to have a national economic policy that benefits the vast majority. And, as Justice Brandeis so clearly told us at one point is, you can have a wonderfully strong democracy or you can have the concentration of wealth in the hands of few, but you cannot have both. Well, we tried their way. I would like to go back to having the wonderful democracy.

With that, Mr. Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity to speak on this great floor. I thank you to give a different interpretation of what is happening in America.