The Economy May Be Growing Once Again, But It Certainly Isn't Growing Fast Enough

Americans are facing their greatest economic challenge in generations, and they need to hear from their prospective representatives what we're going to do about it.
This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.

Americans are facing their greatest economic challenge in generations, and they need to hear from their prospective representatives what we're going to do about it.

That's why ever since the beginning of this campaign, I've been talking about my green jobs plan, entitled, "Green Jobs & Peace: A Plan to Reinvest At Home Instead of Spending on Wars Abroad." Hard working Americans who are struggling to make ends meet need more than just lip service. After all, lip service doesn't pay the mortgage. They need a real, concrete plan to create jobs and launch the economy of the 21st century.

First off, we need to bring our troops home from Afghanistan and Iraq as quickly and safely as possible, and I applaud President Obama's bold leadership and his decision to begin withdrawing our troops from Afghanistan this year.

We are simply spending too many dollars and too many promising lives abroad. We need our young men and women and our money back here, powering a new green economy, transforming our energy sector, and creating jobs.

With a few targeted measures, we can jumpstart our economy and fuel the innovation and entrepreneurship that has always made America first among nations.

1. Improve Federal Funding and Regulatory Policy for Green Energy

Green energy and clean technologies can become the driving engine of America's economy, but they face particularly daunting prospects as they start up and grow. By establishing a Green Bank to provide adequate start-up capital and rebates for the cost of expanding a clean energy company, we can dramatically accelerate the growth a self-sustaining and highly-profitable green economy.

2. Promote "Local Energy"

Everyone wins when we create local energy solutions -- solar, wind and fuel cell generation combined with energy efficiency -- in our neighborhoods. We improve our local environment by providing reliable, pollution-free electricity, we avoid building wasteful and dangerous transmission lines, and we create new installation and retrofitting jobs.

3. Create a Stable Clean Energy Market

If clean energy markets are stable and secure, businesses can invest confidently in emerging technologies. This in turn creates a solid foundation for job growth. Federal and state governments can establish clear environmental standards and certainty of demand, so that business leaders will invest in these projects today.

4. Invest in American Innovation

GPS, nuclear power and the Internet all owe their creation to American public investment. We should continue to identify and support new transformative technologies, and create more energy innovation hubs to bring together our best minds to solve our energy challenges.

5. Build the Green Infrastructure of Tomorrow, Today

In this period of strained government budgets, it is tempting to radically cut spending on our community's infrastructure. But now is precisely when we need to invest in the smart green infrastructure that our economy needs to grow. Rather than laying out more congested roadways, we should invest in expanding light rail and improving public transit, as well as replacing diesel buses with cleaner burning ones. Using innovative measures like Los Angeles's 30/10 initiative, also known as America Fast Forward, we can accomplish 30 years of infrastructure construction in only 10, we can lay a strong foundation for the economy of the future and create the jobs we need today.

6. Level the Playing Field with Big Oil

It's a dirty secret that 37 countries, including the United States, subsidize oil use. Oil companies received over $550 billion globally in government handouts last year. Renewable energy is less competitive because we give unfair advantages to the most unappealing fuel sources. This imbalance must end.

I'm running for Congress because I believe in the limitless ability of Americans to make our world a better place. We do big things in this country -- we need only unleash our potential.

Click here to download my detailed 24 page Green Jobs and Peace Plan:

For more information, visit

Support HuffPost

Popular in the Community