mead cohen berger shevtsova garfinkle michta grygiel blankenhorn
Epitaph for Obama

Glenn Greenwald is not the left’s most dispassionate thinker, and his bitterness at what he sees as the White House’s betrayal of its liberal base has been growing for some time.  What looks to him like a comprehensive cave-in by President Obama on the debt ceiling talks has inspired him to a comprehensive attack on what he sees as the President’s total break with Democratic ideals.

(2) The reported deal on the debt ceiling is so completely one-sided — brutal domestic cuts with no tax increases on the rich and the likelihood of serious entitlement cuts in six months with a “Super Congressional” deficit commission — that even Howard Kurtz was able to observe: “If there are $3 trillion in cuts and no tax hikes, Obama will have to explain how it is that the Republicans got 98 pct. of what they wanted,” while Grover Norquist, the Right of the Right on such matters, happily proclaimed: “Sounds like a budget deal with real savings and no tax hikes is a go.”

(3) The same White House behavior shaping the debt deal — full embrace of GOP policies and (in the case of Social Security cuts) going beyond that — has been evident in most policy realms from the start.  It first manifested in the context of Obama’s adoption of the Bush/Cheney approach to the war on civil liberties and Terrorism, which is why civil libertarians were the first to object so vocally and continuously to the Obama presidency, culminating in this amazing event from mid-2010: “Speaking at a conference of liberal activists Wednesday morning, ACLU Executive Director Anthony Romero didn’t mince his words about the administration’s handling of civil liberties issues. ‘I’m going to start provocatively . . .  I’m disgusted with this president,’ Romero told the America’s Future Now breakout session.”

In other words, a slew of millionaire politicians who spent the last decade exploding the national debt with Endless War, a sprawling Surveillance State, and tax cuts for the rich are now imposing extreme suffering on the already-suffering ordinary citizenry, all at the direction of their plutocratic overlords, who are prospering more than ever and will sacrifice virtually nothing under this deal (despite their responsibility for the 2008 financial collapse that continues to spawn economic misery).

Read the whole thing.

Features Icon
show comments
  • Kenny

    With a little luck, we’ll see Ralph Nadar and the Green Party on the balolot again.


  • Jim.

    Even Obama realizes the current level of spending is unsustainable. Even these $4 trillion in cuts are about 1/10th of what we actually need to make, to balance our books.

    The $40 trillion of savings that we need over 30 years or so (more, if we don’t balance the budget in the near-term) and the $100 trillion in the long term are simply not going to be realized without serious cuts and reforms in Entitlement programs.

    Confiscatory taxes on “plutocrats” and on “corporations” just aren’t going to cut it. Obama’s bright enough to do that, even though he can’t come out and say it.

  • Doug Page

    Does Greenwald want the United States to turn into Greece or some other nation that can’t pay back its loans? According to Barron’s, the United States spends $225 billion each year servicing its $14.3 trillion of debt.

    Think if we weren’t carrying that kind of debt. We could spend the $225 billion on something else, maybe on educating our children; maybe on better roads and bridges and other infrastructure items; maybe on finding a better (perhaps even green) source of energy — right here at home instead of in the Middle East; maybe on a jobs program that puts people back to work.

    It’s time to pay down the Visa card. And either we solve our problems or someone else will do it for us, like the Chinese.

    I’d be a far less conflicted voter if the Democrats could understand the value of a dollar and the Republicans could understand the value of human rights.

    Let’s hope both parties in Congress, and The White House, find their inner adult and make a deal — soon!

  • Luke Lea

    Weak or clueless?

© The American Interest LLC 2005-2016 About Us Masthead Submissions Advertise Customer Service