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Mush from The One

Obama's FT interview (FT commentary):

In all countries there is an understandable tension between the steps that are needed to kick start the economy and the fact that many of these steps are very expensive and tax payers have a healthy scepticism about spending too much of their money, particularly when it is perceived ...

nodollarsOh, it's a matter of perception? How about some "tough love" for the FT, Mr. President? (And with "it is," stellar use of the lack of agency trope!)

.... that some ....

Not most?

... of the money is being spent not on them ...

That's not a perception! TARP -- written by Democrats, and whipped by the then Democratic President-elect -- was passed NOW NOW NOW NOW without so much as a hearing, while the rest of us peasants are still waiting for housing help, let alone even the watered-down, half-assed, pissant, sucking-up-to-the-health-insurance-parasites health insurance "reform" that Obama's pushing. The money is NOT being spent on us. Do you think we're idiots? (Chart via the Agonist).

... but on others who they perceive....

There's that word again!

may have helped precipitate the crisis.

Like I said, mush. "May" and not did? "Helped" and not were responsible for? "Precipitate" and not cause?

Last I checked, I didn't leverage my house 30 to 1 and then lose the money I borrowed by betting it on the ponies. And I didn't take billions of dollars in bonuses for doing it, either!

So that [What? Perception management?] is always going to be a challenge and what’s also difficult is the fact that the policies we initiate all take time to take effect and by its very nature politics looks for more instantaneous gratification.

For Fuck's sake, I'm not looking for "instantaneous gratification."

I'm looking for transparency and accountability in the way the administration is dumping trillions of dollars into the enormous hole* that the banksters created and profited from.

That's what would gratify me.

And you'd think that a party and a President with a single "progressive" bone in their bodies would be willing -- no, eager -- to do just that. But n-o-o-o-o-o-o-o!

Plus ça "change," plus c'est la même chose....

NOTE * "America needs the money hole!"

UPDATE Cannonfire:

Ian Welsh gets it right: Barack Obama would rather chew razor blades than re-organize and regulate financial capitalism. He will not reinstitute Glass/Steagall, he won't break up the big banks, he won't investigate fraud, he won't limit leverage, he won't reinstitute Reagan-era progressive tax rates.

Thanks, "creative" [cough] "class"!

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Submitted by jawbone on

To House New Dems, which overlap Blue Dogs, Obama said he was a New Democrat.

Pretty strong article on New Dems, DLCers, Blue Dogs.

In the wake of the small-d democratic upsurge of the 1980s they [Dem leadership] cemented their hold on the Democratic Pary by founding the Democratic Leadership Council. The DLC assured them access to the same sources of corporate funding as Republicans, and on the same basis. As long as Democrats carried the water of big insurance, big pharma, the airlines, the energy companies and Wall Street, as long as DLC-funded candidates could speak for the party's base rather than allowing that base to speak for itself, and as along as the Democratic base was sent home between elections, Democrats would be assured a steady stream of corporate funding.

In a generation, the nation's elite educational institutions along with think tanks from the Manhattan Institute to the Rand Institute, and funding from corporate foundations, would incubate a new generation of “black leaders,” the Cory Bookers, the Artur Davises, and finally Barack Obama. While paying expert lip service to the tradition of African American struggle for human rights and economic justice, the new-style leaders declare themselves “pragmatic, not dogmatic,” and actively oppose the interests of the constituents that make their careers possible.

The so-called New Democrats with whom Barack Obama identifies are, next to the House Blue Dogs, the most rightwing of Democratic reps in Congress, with considerable overlap between the two groups. In fact, several House New Democrats are also Blue Dogs. New Democrats supported the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan, and continual increases in the military budget. They all supported the bailout, and uphold No Child Left Behind and favor the gradual dismantling and privatization of public education in the US which NCLB set in motion. New Democrats are tepid at best on the Employee Free Choice Act, which would give workers across the country the legal standing workers have in many other advanced industrial countries to fight for wage and benefit increases and respect and dignity on the job.

And despite the fact that single payer health care would create 2.6 million new jobs and cover all the uninsured while costing no more than the present and profoundly broken health care system, New Democrats prefer a healthy private insurance sector to a healthy population. They know that families who do not fear losing their precious medical benefits will be less afraid to organize and strike and fight for better wages and conditions. New Democrats favor throwing trillions at banks to “revive” the economy, but are willing to cut or gut Social Security. All these policy positions, and the New Democrat label itself are the heritage of the Democratic Leadership Council, with which Obama was briefly affiliated early in his career, but forced to disavow. Obama's chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, a leading New Democrat in the Congress, has always been a stalwart of the Democratic Leadership Council. Emmanuel used corporate campaign cash to run pro-war Democrats against antiwar Democrats in 2006 and 2008. (My emphasis)