I continue to be shocked at Obama's failure to lead on economics. Paul Krugman:
John Boehner, March 2009:It’s time for government to tighten their belts and show the American people that we ‘get’ it
Barack Obama, yesterday:“At a time when so many families are tightening their belts, he’s going to make sure that the government continues to tighten its own,” Obama said. “
We’ll never know how differently the politics would have played if Obama, instead of systematically echoing and giving credibility to all the arguments of the people who want to destroy him, had actually stood up for a different economic philosophy. But we do know how his actual strategy has worked, and it hasn’t been a success.
You can't campaign for stimulus and belt tightening at once - not and make any sense anyway. My worst fear is that he actually realizes this, and has given up on trying to makes sense. After all, Bush and Palin never made sense in their lives and they seemed to do OK.
Suppose Obama had wielded fear and terror to campaign for a 1.3 trillion dollar stimulus. He wouldn't have gotten it, but at least the blame would have been clear - and a case could have been made for the further stimulus we now need.