Jonathan Alter writes:
"He knows that now is not the moment to cheerlead, not when the financial players are lying dazed on the field. There will be time for that, when the banks have been 'restructured' (see, that sounds better than 'nationalized') and the credit starts flowing again....
"Obama is betting on two things: first, that people are so tired of being bamboozled that a little straight talk about their woes will make them feel more in control, the prerequisite for genuine confidence. And second, that he'll get props for trying, that the very effort of riding events instead of letting them ride him will at least offer the illusion of mastery. Once these mental pieces are fastened in place and we're fully 'in recovery,' to use therapy lingo, the enduring problems won't seem so terrifying anymore."
Watch Jonathan Alter interview by NBC's Norah O'Donnel here: