Robert Reich is sorely disappointed in obama’s economic proposals, or lack thereof. So why does Reich still support obama?
Robert Reich isn’t happy with either Mitt Romney or barack obama. Reich, Secretary of Labor under President Clinton and ardent advocate of leftist ideals no longer embraced by the Left, wants to hear how they’d remedy “the worst economy since the Great Depression.”
“Neither candidate,” Reich laments, “wants to take any chances by offering any large, serious proposals. Both are banking instead on negative campaigns that convince voters the other guy would be worse.” Reich believes this “anti-election” spells disaster for the next president. “The public won’t have endorsed any new ideas or bold plans, which means he won’t have a clear mandate to do anything on the economy.”
Desperately Seeking Bold
Reich is especially pained by the lack of “any bold ideas” coming from obama, who Reich endorsed early in the 2008 primaries, and whose stinky jockstrap he’s faithfully carried ever since. As one of those who still believe obama is just too timid to act on his good intentions, Reich offers a few friendly suggestions to the Democrat’s choice:
- “Propose a new WPA, modeled after the Depression-era jobs program that hired hundreds of thousands of jobless Americans to rebuild the nation’s infrastructure, or a new Civilian Conservation Corps”
- Permanently exempt the first $25,000 of income from payroll taxes, and eliminate the income ceiling;
- Reinstate Glass-Steagall;
- Break up the big banks, “so Wall Street doesn’t cause another financial collapse.”
C’mon barry, we can do it!
It’s frustrating to watch someone as highly intelligent as Reich become so incredibly stupid. Actions speak louder than words, and after 3 1/2 years, it’s obvious that obama has no intention of doing any of those sorts of things. For obama is Wall Street’s bitch. But that’s obama’s one great gift: he’s a stupid-maker, with the power to turn otherwise sane, rational people into blathering fools.
To date, obama’s economic policy has been very un-Reichian: failed bailouts of failed big banks & failed big auto; a dogged refusal to go after mortgage swindlers or Wall Street brigands; the eager signing of a series of jobs-killing “free trade” treaties; a jobs (sic) bill that contained under-funded, already-failed measures — what union boss Richard Trumka labeled “nibbling around the edge” — sandwiched between gratuitous guttings of Social Security and Medicare. The economy remains moribund and real unemployment remains stuck at c. 15% — a figure Reich himself cited to justify labeling our current malaise a “depression.” Most of the ‘new’ jobs created under obama are low wage substitutes for lost high-paying ones. Half of recent college graduates can’t find employment, while job-seekers over 40 are plain S.O.L. As a result, obama is reduced to speaking about jobs ‘saved’, not created — or promising to be more like a Clinton next term.
Reich, like most Americans, falls for the ‘lesser of two evils’ trap. When faced with Romney’s promise to bring back the economic policies of the Harding, Coolidge and Hoover administrations, dragging along obama like a petulant child seems the only option.
Were Reich to wrest free from obama the Deceiver’s svengali spell, he’d see that there is indeed someone running for president who proposes just the “big bold ideas” Reich yearns for — Jill Stein.
Want bold, Bob? While Romney promises 12 million jobs — eventually — through laissez-faire policies & expansion of fossil fuel production, and obama hints at another million or so jobs ‘saved’, Jill Stein takes the bull by the horns:
“We will end unemployment in America once and for all by guaranteeing a job at a living wage for every American willing and able to work”, Stein proposes, including 16 millions jobs in sustainable energy, retrofitting, and mass transit.
Want aggressive financial reform? While the obamney twins are mute on the subject, Stein will:
- Create a federal bank to take over distressed mortgages and either restructure the mortgages or rent homes to the occupants;
- Nationalize the Federal Reserve;
- Break up “too big to fail” banks;
- End future bailouts for financial institutions, instead using FDIC powers to reopen them as non-profit public banks;
- Regulate all financial derivatives;
- Reinstate Glass-Steagall.
Hey Bob, want tax justice? In contrast to obama, who carefully avoided every opportunity to repeal the Bush tax cuts for the rich, or to Romney, who advocates even more tax cuts for the
nobility plutocrats “job-creators”, Stein proposes:
- A 90% tax on bonuses for the bankers Bush and obama bailed-out;
- Making corporate tax subsidies transparent in public budgets;
- A fair, progressive tax system “distributed in proportion to ability to pay.”
Finally, in contrast to the imperial war-monger, obama, or Romney, who wants to increase military spending to unprecedented levels, Stein will cut the military budget in half, a $360 billion savings toward reducing the stifling deficit.
Wrong Horse, Bob
Clearly, Robert Reich should endorse Jill Stein for president. Why he, like so many liberals, still clings to the vain hope that obama will change at some point, deserves scrutiny.
Perhaps Reich believes that only someone well-integrated into the political machinery can hope to accomplish anything in Washington. Hardly a plus-point, when that political machine is comprised exclusively of politician-whores who’ll sell their votes (and their souls, if they had any) to the highest bidder.
Likely, Reich falls for the bogus argument that vast amounts of experience is required to hold office. Ignoring for a moment how this trope perpetuates the Dem/Gop choke-hold, look at the “experience” of the obamney twins. The one was a mafia lawyer who wormed his way up the party machine hierarchy; the other, a financier, born to the manor, adept at making gobs of money by clever shuffling around of other people’s money. When the backgrounds of the occupants of the Oval Office are limited to corruption, graft, and plunder, it’s no wonder the state we’re in.
Finally, Reich may think that third parties have no chance in our elections system. That’s a tautology — they have no chance because no one gives them a chance. Stein’s name will be printed on at least 33 state ballots this November, and write-ins for her will count in a further three. Her campaign is currently working to get on every state ballot except Oklahoma. Were every liberal and moderate to vote this November based on their beliefs, and not some vestigial team loyalty, Jill Stein would be our next president.
And, if prominent, influential liberals like Robert Reich began supporting a candidate like Jill Stein, who advocates true liberal ideals and programs, instead of continuing to make lame excuses for a devious, corrupt, corporatist whore like barack obama, we could end this farce and quick.
(c) 2012 by True Liberal Nexus. All rights reserved.
One remark Romney made in Nevada about foreclosures sealed the deal why I could never back him no matter my disdain for O. Mitt claimed that the way to solve the “housing crisis” was for investors to buy up the properties from the banks, rent them out, and wait until the market recovered. What the former occupants where to do with themselves, tellingly, was left unsaid. Said it all.
Well done, Tamer. Sounds like a dream. I’d also like to see the Wall St & political crooks prosecuted.
Doesn’t have to be a dream – I believe these things are eminently feasible. Stein’s platform is essentially FDR’s first hundred days, except FDR was too much of a pussy to dare break up the banks.
I just can not agree with all of Stein’s proposals- she leans a little too far for me – but casting my vote for a third party makes sense to me as a wake up call to the D and R machines.
My own opinion is that whichever of the two static party statists wins in January- we are screwed to hell and back. So why not go down with a protest?
So then in January I will need a new bumper sticker to join my “Don’t blame me I voted for Hillary” one.
Fact of the matter is, neither of the two major parties practice what they preach. They give lip service to their respective ideologies, but once arrived in Washington, they collude to screw ordinary folks while serving their real masters, the oligarchs.
Thanks, Tam. I tire of people acting like the entire god damn fabric of American society will collapse if we have more than two viable parties. I actually wrote an op-ed on that a few months ago. Keep up the good work. I’m still lurking. :)
“A poor player who struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more”.
To your point Tamer, how is it that people who should know better, like Reich, keep expecting Obama to do or care about important things, when it is obvious he has neither the talent nor the interest in them ?
He is our very own Rasputin. The Obamabots are more than drinking kool aid, they are dangerously close to David Koresh territory. I will never understand the dynamic..
Thanks for a great post: did you know the late Sen.Moynihan thought all citizens should have a guaranteed income ? He never proposed legislation on that idea though.