SocraticGadfly: If Dems lose midterms, it's Obama's fault

September 18, 2010

If Dems lose midterms, it's Obama's fault

Likewise, if he loses in 2012. No, seriously. Don't blame GOP obstructionism, of which Prez Kumbaya should have been more cognizant from the get-go. Blame the man staring back at President Barack Obama in the mirror.

If he loses, it's his own fault.

But, the person who slugged the URl is wrong. Obama didn't get "rolled by Wall Street." Geither, Summers et al were willingly chosen as economic advisers precisely because of their Goldman Sachs/Robert Rubin "bloodline"; others were willingly excluded.
Yet those who were most aligned with the “progressive” side of the Wall Street reform issue remained, for the most part, on the outside of the administration looking in. Among them were Brooksley Born, the former chairwoman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and Nobel-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz. Summers and Geithner, by contrast, had been acolytes of Bob Rubin, the former Clinton Treasury secretary who, along with then–Fed chairman Alan Greenspan, had presided over many of the key deregulatory changes in the ’90s. And they convinced Obama that the financial system they themselves had done so much to nurture was, on the whole, fine.

That relates to a failure of will:
(T)he leadership question can’t be ignored. Financial and economic reform just never seemed to be a subject that kindled Obama’s passions, his critics say. ...There was so much passion and ambition in Obama’s words about fixing the economy, and so much dispassion and caution in his policy choices. Early in the Democratic primaries, in January 2008, Obama had stunned many of his supporters by praising Reagan as a transformational president—a contrast to the eight years of Bill Clinton, Obama added cuttingly. Reagan, Obama said, “put us on a fundamentally different path because the country was ready for it.” Yet at what would seem to be a similar historical inflection point—what should have been the end of Reaganism, or deregulatory fervor—President Obama seemed unprepared to address the deeper ills of the financial system and the economy. ... The Obama administration also did little to use its bully pulpit to reorient pay packages at the big financial houses, where bonuses still often run in the tens of millions of dollars. Critics make the case that changing this pay structure would do more than punish those who helped spur the meltdown. It might also encourage some of America’s greatest minds to stay away from financial engineering, which contributes little of substance to the economy, and instead consider real engineering.

Meanwhile, rather than acting like FDR or LBJ, Obama seems more and more like the second coming of Jimmy Carter. No, not every president is an LBJ, an FDR, a Wilson, or even a Reagan, at handling Congress. But, the more successful presidents improve their skills.

Another reason it's his fault if Dems lose big in midterms, or he loses in 2012?


Obama again mocked the "professional left," this time while sucking up to the rich in Greenwich, Conn., many of whom he protected from real financial regulation with his pseudo-reform bill.

It's clear that he's a flat-out liar about wanting to be "pushed" by the left. It's clear he's both a worse, and more unskilled, liar about it than Bill Clinton was on the same subject.

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