Archive for August 24th, 2010

On receiving firing advice from Republicans.

Aug 24, 2010 in Barack Obama, Clueless Conservatives, Economy

John Boehner says, “Fire Summers and Geithner!”

Well, who can argue with that? It would be a good sign, actually, presuming the voice that replaced them was an actual liberal (no, you haven’t been living in some Commie nightmare, it’s okay to breathe a sigh of relief now) or at least somebody willing to really get serious about the best solutions to our problems, even if they are somehow bankrupt simply for being ideas that come from liberals.

I’d just like somebody who sticks to the merits. And the merits of our case are that capitalism has been broken by the rich and twisted into channels of infinite accountability-free revenue that can be used to muster political power and keep gaming the system in their favor. At every juncture, Geithner and Summers made sure above all else that the masters of money stayed happy and that the billions continued to flow upwards. What did we get? A robust Wall Street and a 9.5% unemployment rate. Fuck that noise, ladies and gentlemen. Fuck it in its ass.

Still, one has to giggle whenever a Republican says who ought to be fired, because it’s usually that Republican who needs to be fired. John Boehner has been a dolt, a barfly, a golfer, a stubbornly ignorant hack, and an unrepentent baseless obstructionist who has violated the principles of every “conservative” involved. Summers and Geithner would be useful in a room when decisions are being made, but they shouldn’t be making those decisions. Obama has shied away from having real oppositional thinking in his Cabinet, and people like Paul Volcker are simply not given much heft to work with. They propose something, then Geithner and Summers go over it and take out everything that would make a real difference. Symbolic measures, more tax cuts, less public benefit.

In their defense, Obama seems to be more reluctant to hang anything on Geithner’s word, and things like the $26 billion dollar jobs bill, half-measure as it is anyway, suggest somebody in there is listening.

Yes, you can spend a dollar on an ordinary American, not just a CEO. No, we won’t turn into the Soviet Union because of it. Nor Nazi Germany. That’s reality. And if Obama can get his team focused on reality, not just appeasing Wall St. (and getting called anti-business for it), then I’ll be a much happier camper.


I guess the Iraq War ended.

Aug 24, 2010 in Politics

Nice shell game. Wonder what the catch on ending the Afghan war will be. Obama was able to create the opening by sliding most of the troops to Afghanistan, really just shifting the effort to a country at least arguably more relevant, if not more fruitful. Not a bad move entirely if he does get out next year, but most people know the U.S. never leaves a country, it just scales down. I just feel a bit skeptical that we’ll ever really get all the way out and leave the Middle East alone for five minutes.