It appears Obama is going to stick by Geithner. This should tell you something about the President. Stubbornness would be the best of those things.
Most of the criticism of Geithner has focused on what he hasn't done: that his heavily hyped February unveiling of a plan to fix the banks left too many details out, or that he failed to prevent the AIG bonuses from being paid out long after he knew they were planned.
Let's see...a Wall Street insider who looked past Wall Street insiders getting insidious amounts of compensation. Hmmm...I must be missing something if I'm supposed to be surprised. Of course, I'm not supposed to be surprised.
The problem with this line of criticism--however well deserved--is that it doesn't get at the nub of what Geithner and the rest of the Obama economic team are actually doing. Here, the policy failures are much more serious.
And if the policies are failures, the best thing to do is to cut those who favored instituting said failed policies. America would love Obama even more if he were to do such a thing. It would, however, take the sheen off of the Obama is brilliant meme. Tough choice there, I'd say.
John Hussman, manager of the Hussman Strategic Growth mutual fund, supports government takeovers and restructuring of insolvent financial institutions. Recently, he chided the administration for its "misguided policy response...[that] has focused almost exclusively on squandering public money and burdening our children with indebtedness in order to defend the bondholders of mismanaged financial institutions (blame Paulson and Geithner--I've got a lot of respect for our President, but he's been sold a load of garbage by banking insiders)."
I think he's actively buying a load of garbage. Semantics? Maybe, though I don't think so.
I'll let you read the rest of Selfa's article. As usual from Lance, it's very good and well worth the time. You'll get a good look at Geithner, including an explanation of why he may have be brought in by Obama's team. You may even be able to glean some of Obama's thinking about the actions he and his administration have taken. Read it. Let your blood boil for a bit. Then consider how do we get out of this mess without the bosses, bankster frauds and politicos being the only ones who come out to the better.
Lance Selfa is the author of The Democrats: A Critical History, a socialist analysis of the Democratic Party, and editor of The Struggle for Palestine, a collection of essays by leading solidarity activists. He is on the editorial board of the International Socialist Review.
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