Monday, November 10, 2008

Franklin Delano Obama?

Oh dear.  Paul Krugman argues for a new New Deal - here. I was somewhat relieved when he said that FDR's policies weren't perfect, but I read on only to see this:
"My advice to the Obama people is to figure out how much help they think the economy needs, then add 50 percent."
Something tells me to prepare for massive government expansion in the next four years...


Arthur James said...

In December 1933,the economist John Maynard Keynes wrote an open letter to President Roosevelt, which began:

"You have made yourself the trustee of those in every country who seek to mend the evils of our condition by reasoned experiment within the framework of the existing social system. If you fail, rational change will be gravely prejudiced throughout the world, leaving orthodoxy and revolution to fight it out."

(quoted from Donald Markwell,"John Maynard Keynes and International Relations: Economic Paths to War and Peace", Oxford University Press, 2006, page 176)

Although the circumstances are different, exactly 75 years later President-elect Obama is in something like the same position. People around the world see him as the trustee of their hopes, both for better international relations and for revival of the world economy.

As in FDR's time, when Depression led remorselessly to war, so today, the two may be more closely connected than we would like to think.

President Obama must ensure that the US provides leadership in dealing with the global economic crisis of our day. This, too, is one of the lessons - probably not widely enough appreciated - of FDR's time, and of Keynes's insights (see Markwell's book quoted above).

Anonymous said...

... Obama is not the trustee of anyone except the banking cartels. It's clear by the nature of the people he affiliates with. The people are consumed with the fact that he's black and eloquent, but have no idea what this man actually stands for. Just in the first week, through the people he has appointed, we can see he is not about change at all.

If you calculate the value of the positive media time and the amount of spending he did on his campaign, you find that they were rooting for this guy for a long time. He is a puppet for the interests of the corporate elite.

If anything, he should do nothing -- so the rest of us can sleep better at night.

Anonymous said...

And FYI, Krugman is nothing more than a mouthpiece for big government. He's another Keynesian piece of trash.

MasoodM said...

i can only hope that he doesn't charm (read:con ) the masses into accepting the statist policies he will inevitably propose.

Paul Krugman said...

I confess, I don't know what I'm saying. I am a blithering idiot.

- Paul Krugman