Skip to main content

Here is a task I have engaged in.  Watch the Mitt Romney speech to NALEO on Thursday.  Read the Washington Post piece today on Bain Capital.  Then, watch Barack Obama’s speech to NALEO.  (NALEO- National Association of Latino Elected Officials).
Then, having done your homework, see if you can support the current common position on the left. – We should sit out this election.
I have strong criticism of Obama’s policies on the economy.   Here, in brief, is how Barack Obama failed us on the economy.  
 Robert Kuttner, in A Presidency in Peril: The Inside Story of Obama’s Promise, Wall Streets Power, and the Struggle to Control our Economic Future, (2010) explains why the Obama administration was able to mount a defense of the corporate looters while failing  in its tepid  efforts to respond to the economic crisis with a progressive jobs policy.     He provides detailed description  of the perspectives and economic vested interests of the major policy advisors in the Obama Administration.  

Prior to reading this book I remained an Obama supporter.  Even though I recognized his failure in Afghanistan and the Obama-Duncan assault on teachers, I continued to explain how the  economic crisis along with Republican intransigence produced the limited gains in health care legislation, in tax reform, economic reform,  and in the needed economic stimulus to create jobs in the face of the worse recession since the great depression.  I continued to make the case for a progressive view of the Obama Administration as the best we could get under the circumstances.
    This book turned the tide for me.  By 2010 after nearly three years of the financial crisis where finance capital regained its power and wealth at the expense of all of the rest of us, the government has become increasingly willing to intervene  to protect, promote, and to directly fund the large banks.  We have an  economic order in which the government is used to loot the economy for the benefit of the very rich.  The Administration has acted as the Washington branch of Wall Street.
    Let us be clear.  Barack Obama and his advisors chose the economic team that has done this to the nation, Larry Summers, Tim Geithner,  and others.  It is their policy.   And, they have opposed the few people who tried to keep from handing the store over to Wall Street such as Elizabeth  Warrant and  Republican Shiela Blair.      
We need to spend more public money to improve schools, to develop roads and infrastructure, and to create jobs.  The  government must protect and empower our citizens. To foster prosperity  it must prepare the young for civic participation.   Protection includes health care, social security, safe food, environmental protection, safe streets, job protection, etc.   Our economy needs roads, bridges, telephone lines, communications systems, energy and quality education.  
    Kuttner traces the role of key financial advisors from Robert Rubin of Citi Bank, and the many major crooks of Goldman Sachs who have made billions off of this crisis.   This is Finance  capital’s relentless  class war against the rest of us while it continues to profit from the economic crisis.  Their demands for unconscionable tax breaks for the rich to  while refusing the rescue of bankrupted states and municipalities thus forcing  budget cuts that decimate schools, force lay offs of nurses and health care workers, police, and firefighters and now they even dare to propose cutting social security while preventing banking  regulation to stop the reckless behavior that plunged the country and the world into the deepest recession since the Great Depression.
     The appointments of  Austan Goolsbee. Bill Daley, and Jeffrey Immelt, among others, reflects a conscious and deliberate choice on the part of the Obama team to expand further in the direction of corporate liberalism, the very people who brought the economic crisis to the nation

 Looking at both the financial vested interests of this group and their organizational ties provides a much better informed position on how the Obama Administration came to support Wall Street both in the bail outs and in preventing real regulatory reform.  
    The Presidency in Peril goes over some of the same ground as  Dean Baker in Plunder and Blunder (2009) and Nomi Prins in ,It Takes a Pillage; Behind the Bailouts, Bonuses, and Backroom Deals from Washington to Wall Street, (2009) on the role of insider financial manipulation and profiteering.  Kuttner concentrates particularly on Robert Rubin and his protégé Larry Summers.  He does indeed focus on the inside story of political networks and their close linkage to corporate networks.  While there may be differences between Democratic aligned finance capital and Republican aligned finance capital, neither group is interested in advancing prosperity for working people and the middle class.  They are more alike than different.  (See the earlier review of this book on this dairy list).
    So, Obama failed us on the economy – but Mitt  Romney and a Republican majority would be worse, not better.

Originally posted to dcampbell on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 03:13 PM PDT.

Also republished by Trolls.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site