Hear no unemployed, see no unemployedIt took Congress a matter of days to pass bail-out legislation for airlines whose economic fortunes were damaged by the events of Sept. 11. But Congress has left town without extending benefits to the unemployed past Dec. 28.

U.S. Reps. David Wu and Brian Baird are on target in their attempt to have congressional leaders forge an agreement so that displaced workers are not cut off from unemployment assistance.

While the White House is eagerly preparing for war, nearly one million unemployed are feeling the brunt of an economic downturn. Oregon has an inordinate share of those people because our state is a leader in unemployment.

Parties in power seldom want to admit the economy is in trouble. Seen from Oregon's vantage point, the economy is clearly in trouble.

President Bush has the power to extend those benefits without congressional action. Bush's friend and colleague, U.S. Sen. Gordon Smith, should be urging the president to do so.