As the US teeters on the brink of a truly great depression, one that may engulf the world, it is time to be brutal. We can see the shape history is taking — it is to steal from Marx and Twain, both repeating and rhyming. The ringmasters of Obama’s economic policy must — to paraphrase Cromwell — go, in the name of God, go. For the ghost of Hoover hovers.
Obama, who might have been a towering President, a Lincoln, or a Roosevelt, is becoming another Hoover incapable of turning from the advice of the money masters.
While the great presidents decided and enforced their decisions on a fractious land, Obama is the ultimate victim of regulatory capture and increasingly a physical target for those millions of white Americans who never accepted their President.
Obama’s first and immediate problem is the role of the three worldly wise men — Geithner, Summers and Bernanke — who have moulded the man to be the tool of the Too big To Fail entities that have come to rule Washington from Wall Street.
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This is a clear and present danger to the Democratic Party’s hold on the House next year. It is also an element of the threat to the President himself and by that I mean his life.
Obama is 47. He was 22 when Reagan took office. Just checking his age, I stumbled over theories that had me wondering if he was born and suckled by Joseph Stalin and parachuted into Cuba as a child and swears daily to bequeath his office to the militant feminist wing of the Black Panther. Obama hate is so evident that it is palpable. And this lunatic fringe is up in arms because a people that have never been told No! are now being held to ransom by complicated forces that can be, in the minds of millions, directed at Obama personally.
The trap the economists surround the policymakers with is so complete that there is almost a scientific certainty to it. Train an economist to be a thief and they won’t leave a soup spoon. They take the lot. They do so by reversing logic, maths and sense. Marx sure got the downside of capital right when he said theft is the first stage thereof. Now, as the US borrows, begs and tries to burrow from the hole it has so completely constructed, President Obama now finds he is caught in the grasp of history when it is grasping as never before. The nightmare mounts.
There are 50 million Americans on food stamps. I remember seeing my first food stamp and had lived in the US for months. That was under Bush 1.
Permanent, vast unemployment levels currently above 17% and sure to go to the twenties.
A thoroughly corrupt financial system that has its tentacles throughout every tiny rat hole in his administration — and everywhere else between the beltways and avenues of Washington-Wall Street.
Billions more government handouts needed immediately to keep some sort of pretence of a single green shoot.
Afghanistan, Pakistan, China, the Middle East …
Then you get into the tricky bits. And yesterday Obama faced reducing the deficit or reducing more of the workforce. Guess who got reduced.
“He fears a double-dip recession will occur if foreigners lose confidence in the US dollar, causing interest rates to spike,” an observer said, exactly explaining what he fears. Oh for the President that feared fear.
But we are way beyond that.
Obama told us in an interview with the hated Fox News, an organisation dedicated to his destruction by foul means preferably:
“I think it is important though to recognise that, if we keep on adding to the deficit — even in the midst of this recovery — that at some point people could lose confidence in the US economy in a way that could actually lead to a double-dip recession.”
Obama doesn’t seem to understand how the economy works. Reducing deficits by cutting spending decreases demand. This will, as it did for Roosevelt in 1937, induce a double-dip recession. The forces that wish Obama ill will be even more powerful as the US dips deeper into the economic morass.
Fact is this is a sure way into a double-dip depression, which merely extends the one the US is in to the one it is about to enter. Now, as the economic judgement mounts and the inevitability of decline is so apparent that the US enemies are taking tap-dancing lesson, some men must go.
Yesterday, at last a muttering of discontent from Oregon congressman Peter Defazio, demanding Geithner and Summers be dismissed and saying dissent in the progressive section of the party is acute. All members looking at re-election next year are getting the same feed from their base. Defazio has merely brought this out into the open.
For if Obama were to fire Summers and Giethner and allow Bernanke — when his term expires next year — to move on, he might just save his nation and his presidency.
There was a time when national security had the first ear of the President but now that is the case with the economy for they are one and the same. Perhaps Obama never realised what being President of the United States was all about.
He had served a mere four years in the Senate while Bush junior was president. It is a meagre background with almost no economic experience. His adult political life included eight balmy years when Clinton revived America. The next eight was the train wreck of the Bush 43 presidency.
From inauguration things might have looked simple enough. Responsible attentive government could reverse the effects of the Bush follies just as Clinton did with those of his Bush’s father and Reagan. Obama is young and inexperienced but compared with Bush he is almost an elder statesman.
Youth and inexperience didn’t matter for Bush because Bush never doubted himself. Bereft of intellectual curiosity he decided on actions and then never doubted them no matter how insane their application. He made sure that all around him agreed with even the most noxious criminal scheme and malcontents met Karl Rove with his baseball bat. Bush ruled. Cheney implemented but Bush had his way. He was never a victim of regulatory capture — he captured.
But as America tries to comprehend the end of its economic supremacy, forces dangerous to the life of the President are being unleashed across the land. Unwittingly, I assume, some US TV station is running “pray for Obama” ads that cite Psalm 109:8 but do not quote the verse.
Psalm 109:8, which is appearing on bumper stickers and T-shirts across the land is one more in a long line of coded Obama death threats. The verse in question reads: “May his days be few; may another take his place of leadership.” That leads fairly naturally into the Psalm 109:9, “May his children be fatherless, and his wife a widow.” Obama’s heroes’ wives did become widows.
I pray his day be long in the land but that does not extend to those who have led him in his path of uncertainty into the valley of the shadow of death. By that I mean his three economic chiefs. But these veiled death threats are real and present dangers.
Yesterday Rachel Maddow asked Patience With God author and Huffington Post blogger Frank Schaeffer to explain whether or not the citation of this Biblical text “means something less threatening to people hearing this in a Biblical context.” Schaeffer replied:
No. Actually, it means something more threatening. I think that the situation that I find genuinely frightening right now is that you have a ramping up of Biblical language, language from the anti-abortion movement, for instance, death panels and this sort of thing, and what it’s coalescing into is branding Obama as Hitler, as they have already called him. And something foreign to our shores, we’re reminded of that, he’s born in Kenya. As brown, as black, above all, as not us.
He is, as Sarah Palin’s said, “not a real American”. But now, it turns out, he joins the ranks of the unjust kings of ancient Israel, unjust rulers to which all these Biblical allusions are directed who should be slaughtered, if not by God, then by just men. So there’s a parallel here with Timothy McVeigh’s T-shirt on the day of the Oklahoma City bombing. He said the tree of liberty had to be watered by the blood of tyrants.
That quote, we saw at a meeting where Obama was present, was carried on a placard by someone with a loaded weapon.
The economy will, with a double-dip, deliver the angry, ugly American a victim and a target and add millions to those that see their only power as coming from the barrel of a gun.
Obama must dismiss his economic advisers and look further afield to the many that have so reasonably yet forcefully advocated policies for all Americans. He must talk to his people and explain what has happened. Millions will remain armed and angry but many will turn from the false gods that would, and are, turning this young man into a monster intent on destroying America. Those who must be hurled out of the White House and public affairs.
Obama knows their names and addresses. If he asks his party faithful, they will support him in a course that will transform his policies before time runs out. If it hasn’t already.