It’s P.Q. and C.Q. as Much as I.Q.
President Obama’s first term was absorbed by dealing with the Great Recession. I hope that in his second term he’ll be able to devote more attention to the Great Inflection.
Dealing with the Great Recession was largely about “Yes We Can” — about government, about what we can and must do “together” to shore up the safety nets and institutions that undergird our society and economy. Obama’s Inaugural Address was a full-throated defense of that “public” side of the unique public-private partnership that makes America great. But, if we’re to sustain the kind of public institutions and safety nets that we’re used to, it will require a lot more growth by the private side (not just more taxes), a lot more entrepreneurship, a lot more start-ups and a lot more individual risk-taking — things the president rarely speaks about. And it will all have to happen in the context of the Great Inflection.
By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN