Why can't we have a smart left, or even a left left?

Karl Smith looks back on the first two years of the Obama administration's economics policy and provides a perfect example of the superficial, timid, and bureaucratic nature of the modern American "left":
  1. Tim Geithner is trotted out as the bad guy who single handed prevents "empowerment" of leftists and populist reforms from Congress! This is the heart of the "progressive" fantasy: someone with poor judgment has failed to seek their brilliant advice.
  2. The automobile rescue, a massive government industrial intervention in which manufacturing and unions were saved with Federal money and at the expense of bondholders and hedge funds disappears! So the populist wave, for which there is no evidence stars in the account while the populist social policy which actually happened is invisible. But that's not the only fact that is disappeared:
    • The health care reform, a fundamental change in US economic organization that Congresswoman Barbara Lee called as significant as the adoption of the voting rights act, is presented as the foolish obsession of the naive President.
    • Dodd-Frank? CFPB? Student Loan reform? DOE investment in solar/battery?...
  3. An elaborate and ridiculously far fetched scenario is proposed as a serious description of public policy and the only evidence introduced is the assumption by the author that the President is stupid, his advisers are both Machiavellian and naive/corrupt, and the lite Keynsianism of the timid professional left is not only intellectually sound but wildly popular.
  4. None of the underlying structural problems of a US economy such as 60 years of military spending, public investment in (mostly white) suburbs, weak unions, racism, collapse of manufacturing employment, wealth inequality, dependence on middle east oil etc. appear at all. It's just WAAH TIMMEY DIDN'T TAKE OUR ADVICE".

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The duplicitious campaign against Geithner

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