It is not surprising that President Barack Obama, among other liberal politicians, is supporting the "Occupy Wall Street" protests in New York and elsewhere. After all, the vague "anti-corporate-greed" message of the protests helps draw attention away from the federal government's role in our nation's current economic crisis.
But that diversionary tactic doesn't seem to be working. In a recent Gallup poll, 64 percent of those surveyed said the federal government deserves more blame for the weak economy than big banks and other financial institutions deserve. Only 30 percent said banks are more at fault.
It is true that financial institutions and some other companies improperly received bailouts after they had in many cases performed badly in the market. And there was some outright fraud in the financial sector, too.
But from where did the bailouts come? From members of both parties in Washington! So who is to blame? Companies that accepted bailouts or lawmakers who approved them?
And it was not the private sector but Congress that passed the $862 billion "stimulus" -- growing our nation's debt and accomplishing little in the way of higher employment.
It was also Washington that approved ObamaCare -- a big portion of which even the Obama administration now admits is unsustainable.
And it was Washington that pressured lenders to give home loans to people with weak credit -- setting millions up for foreclosure when they eventually could not make their mortgage payments.
Now, Obama and Democrats in Congress want various components of a second multibillion-dollar "stimulus" passed -- after the failure of the first one!
Sadly, the American people have good reason to lay much of the blame for the economic crisis on Washington. That's where it belongs.