Best of the Week
Most Popular
1.UK House Prices BrExit Crash NOT Likely Despite London Property Market Weakness - Nadeem_Walayat
2.BrExit Morning - New Dawn for Britain, Independence Day! - Nadeem_Walayat
3.LEAVE Wins EU Referendum - Sterling and FTSE Hit Hard, Pollsters, Bookies and Markets All WRONG! - Nadeem_Walayat
4.BrExit Implications for UK Stock Market, Sterling GBP, House Prices and UK Politics... - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Trading BrExit - Stocks, Bonds, Sterling, Opinion Polls, Bookmaker Odds and My Forecast - Nadeem_Walayat
6.FTSE and Sterling Brexit Trading, Deconstruction of the EU Referendum Result - Nadeem_Walayat
7.UK Interest Rate Cut to 0.25% Imminent and More QE Money Printing - Nadeem_Walayat
8.Trading BrExit - British Pound Plunges, FTSE Stock Futures Slump on LEAVE Shock Referendum Win - Nadeem_Walayat
9.The Stock Market is Reading it Wrong! - Chris_Vermeulen
10.Breakouts Galore in Gold and Silver - Jordan_Roy_Byrne
Free Silver
Last 7 days
Underpriced Silver Is the “Rip Van Winkle” Metal - 25th July 16
Declines in Multiple Market Indexes - 25th July 16
Retailers Are Doomed as Most Americans Are Too Poor to Shop - 25th July 16
Here’s One Currency That Could Go to Zero - 25th July 16
Stock Market Top is Expanding - 25th July 16
Silver Manipulation – Because They Needed the Eggs - 25th July 16
Silver Market COT Stuns: What's Going On Here? - 24th July 16
Gold Demand Remains Stable During Sector Weakness - 24th July 16
Sernova, Diabetes and Haemophilia - 24th July 16
Russia: Tensions, Turmoil, and Western Hubris - 24th July 16
Soybean Commodity Price to Soar Again - 23rd July 16
SPX Stock Market Uptrend Continues - 23rd July 16
Gold And Silver – Debt Addiction Will Carry Precious Metals Higher, Guaranteed - 23rd July 16
Pokemon Go - How to Play, First Use, Balls, Stops, Catching Pokemon's... Great Excercise! - 23rd July 16
7 Signs That the Gold Market Remains Resilient - 23rd July 16
Basic Income in The Time of Crisis - 23rd July 16
Silver Bull Faces Correction - 22nd July 16
The Serious Warning No One’s Talking About - 22nd July 16
Stock Market Insight from Greed, Volatility, and Put/Call Ratio - 22nd July 16
What Will Happen To the Stock Market When Interest Rates Rise? - 22nd July 16
How to Escape the World’s Biggest Ponzi Scheme - 22nd July 16
Addicted to Debt - We Can’t Borrow from the Future Anymore - 21st July 16
Not Everything Is Bullish for Gold - 21st July 16
Don’t Get Sucked Back Into the Stock Market - The Big Picture Hasn’t Changed - 21st July 16
Silver – Caught Inside - 21st July 16
Forex: "The Markets Are Getting Exciting!" - 20th July 16
China Economic Troubles - Is Kyle Bass Finally Getting His Revenge? - 20th July 16
Why Lithium Will See Another Price Spike This Fall - 20th July 16
The Peak Oil Paradox Revisited - 19th July 16
SPX Challenges the Upper Trendline - 19th July 16
Missing ’28 Pages’ of the 9/11 Report Released into Blitzkrieg of World Events - 19th July 16
Likelihood of Organized Disruption at GOP Convention - 19th July 16
More on the ‘Breadth Thrust’ and Stock Market Internals - 19th July 16
FX Traders: Get a Free Week of Forecasts (Details inside) - 19th July 16
Ups and Downs in Gold and Crude Oil Price - 19th July 16
Keep an Eye on ‘Bitcoin’ as the Next ‘Financial Crisis’ Starts! - 18th July 16
Erdogan Might Have Known about the Coup but Didn’t Prevent It on Purpose - 18th July 16
More Deflation Ahead: Silver, Gold And Their Mining Stocks A Must-Have - 18th July 16
Stock Market Minor Top? - 18th July 16

Free Instant Analysis

Free Instant Technical Analysis


Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

The Power of the Wave Principle

Obama's Last Chance To Become A Great President

Politics / US Politics Dec 20, 2012 - 09:11 AM GMT

By: Raul_I_Meijer

Politics

Barack Obama has one last, fleeting chance of becoming known to posterity as a Great President.

His first four years were nothing to write home about, but with the burden of seeking re-election gone, you could argue that he can now throw off the shackles that held him back - and down - since January 20, 2009, and at last show his true face and intentions.


If he keeps up what he has done in his first term, Obama will go into history as an utter failure - and likely worse than that -, as a president who had a shot at greatness and blew it spectacularly. And moreover, as a president who led his country instead of into greatness, into disaster. For its people, that is. Not so much for those who financed his political campaigns. But then, Obama has no more campaigns to run or have financed.

These days, the media bombard us with stories about the "Fiscal Cliff" negotiations. They do that in the same way that they presented the race for the presidency over the past year: they pretend there's high tension and big decisions to be made. Both are fake stories, aimed at generating attention, expressed in advertisement revenue for the media and credibility for the political system.

In reality, there never was a tight presidential race. As a consequence of that, nothing about the fiscal cliff would need to be tight either. And nothing really is. It's theater.

The carefully hidden reality is that the Republican party could never even post a viable candidate for president (and that's presuming it tried). A reality that was "prudently" hidden from view by media and pollsters alike, who depend on tight races to quite simply make money. They have a huge incentive to make up such a reality if none is there. The only pollster who refused to go along with the mass deception was Nate Silver in the NYT, and his predictions therefore varied wildly from all others.

Mitt Romney never had a real shot at the presidency. Ever. For one thing, economic numbers were never bad enough to unseat the incumbent. For another, the GOP never learned the groundswell lesson Obama's Democrats should have taught them 4 years prior: get volunteer feet and boots on the ground. And not just in large, but in humongous numbers. Which is what the Obama campaign successfully did in 2008. The fact that nobody but those blinded by love or personal interest "believed in Romney" sealed the case. The average American disliked the guy so much he couldn't have done worse if he tried.

A direct consequence of all this is that - most of - the Republican party and its financiers never even saw coming what had long been inevitable. They were consistently fooled by their own pollsters, as well as by Gallup et al, which were or at least seemed aiming exclusively at telling them what they wanted to hear. And that in turn makes the GOP and everyone in and around it a bunch of broken winged negotiators. Guys like Grover Norquist and John Boehner, let alone Paul Ryan, are lame sitting ducks. The GOP will come back, and probably in a more extreme version, but for now they're nowhere.

Obama today can easily overpower the lot of them. All the president needs to do in order to succeed in that is to grow a pair. Will he? I'm not holding my breath; he hasn't for four years. But if he does, he can go far.

Barack Obama could rule from a position of force, of great strength. He doesn't have to let anyone or anything stand in his way anymore. Not the Republicans, not his own party, not even his sponsors. He's free to act as he sees fit. Sure, he will risk getting shot, but that's part of the job risk for any president.

To achieve greatness for the history books, he needs to use his present position to go after Wall Street. It's his only shot. It's that simple. Plus, if he doesn't do it, he’ll go down as one of the worst US presidents, as a man who let America slide into unfettered mayhem. Not even a comprehensive gun control law would do it. Not even close. Then again, the power he showed in his Sandy Hook speech can come in handy.

There is no need to negotiate with Boehner and his politically paralyzed ilk. No need for far reaching compromises. Obama can simply dictate his terms. And threaten Executive Orders up the wazoo. So what if the GOP holds the House? They have nothing. If you can't even field anyone, not one single person, who can seriously run for president, you're not a serious American political party, and you don't get to raise your voice at the table. Not if you're facing a guy with balls.

Great presidents? I still hope naming Reagan one is a joke that will soon pop, but at the same time it says something. No matter what you fail at in the job, in the end it's all about economic numbers. And Reagan happened to preside over a rising tide. And it apparently, or let's say according to public perception so far, makes no difference that he did and could because he launched the age of leverage that has steered us towards the debt crisis we're now in. That age is now over, despite all the protestations to the contrary, and all the rosy recovery tales, and Obama has to deal with the tail end of it.

So far as far as we've seen his answer has been to play along with the boys who've profited from that age of leverage. And yes, of course, they've got him where he is; no matter what the groundswell volunteer masses have done, without incessant TV coverage you can't be elected US president anymore. And it just adds to the irony that those two sides are 180 degrees apart. If not more.

At this point in time, Obama no longer has much need for either. He doesn't need the volunteers to call every single US citizen, and he doesn't need the rich and powerful to get him on TV. And so now he has to make a choice, perhaps the biggest one of his life: who's he going to be faithful to? Can't have both anymore.

FDR, though he was a politician first of all, when facing a similar choice, made that choice quite convincingly. And, mind you, did a substantial part of it through issuing a flood of Executive Orders.The most important decision he made was not launching the New Deal, but to clip the wings of the financial industry. Glass Steagall was a major part of that. The New Deal was big, but the crisis itself still didn't finish and vanish until WWII started. The single best sign, perhaps, of how deep the Great Depression crisis was.

Barack Obama has no fiscal/financial room for a New New Deal. But he does have the space and clout to cut down the financial sector to size. And if he doesn't, he’ll go down as quite likely the worst president ever. And that's saying something: there've been a few real stinkers.

Here's the thing: what lifted Reagan looks to sink Obama. Economics.

When Obama announced his financial team in late 2008, I wrote at the time that that was pretty much it, and we had nothing positive to expect. He appointed Robert Rubin's pet-boy Tim Geithner, and Robert Rubin 's right hand man Larry Summers, and, behind the scene, Robert Rubin himself. A former (26 year) Goldman man who had been, a decade previous, one of the driving forces, along with Alan Greenspan, in getting rid of Glass Steagall.

A campaign that was basically calling FDR stupid. Americans don't have long memories, so you - can - have the same crisis every 70-80 years. Like a Kondratieff cycle. Well, it’s been 80 years since 1933s Glass Steagall. Which came after the Panic of 1857 and James Buchanan's "Reform not Relief" speech. Which at least clipped the banks somewhat.

Now, Summers is gone, and Geithner is going. So all we need to do really is to wait for Obama to announce his new team. If it consists of more of the same, Goldman connections and all that, forget it. That's when we’ll know Obama has decided to go full blast with the same old same old which has brought us the debt crisis in the first place, and which has concealed its effects so well today that many if not most people believe we're on a road to recovery. Which would serve to prove that you can solve debt problems with more debt. Which you can't.

So, yeah, alright, let's wait and see. We have a president for the next four years, if he lasts that long, who has a pretty unique opportunity to do the right thing for his people, for the ones who campaigned and voted for him hoping and believing that he would fight for their causes and interests. As for trying to fool them into thinking that their interests are the same as those of the major banks, the 'Too Big to Fail' principle, that one's real old and tired.

Sure, you can get them through another holiday season brimming with hope and all sorts of fairy tale stories, but it'll be January 1 at some point soon, and it'll be cold and dark then and the plastic will need to be paid off and they'll only still work at McDo's if anywhere. While the likes of Angelo Mozilo and John Thain have never even stood trial, let alone served time, and bathe in billions of ill-gotten gains. That kind of twisted justice will not stand forever.

We’ll know pretty soon if President Barack Obama is serious about providing truth and justice to his voters, and about defending them from interests hostile to them. If he decides not to, the first black US president will be seen as the worst one ever - quite a responsibility, come to think of it -. Things might look nice economically right now, but that won't last.

Instead, Obama could use his unique gifts, his charisma, his oratory skills, as so convincingly exposed once again in his Sandy Hook speech, for the people's good, not to fool them any more than he's already done. Separate consumer banking from investment banking, open up the boiling vaults of derivatives, let go broke who invested stupidly, and send those to jail who did so illegally. It's not exactly complicated.

The only thing that does complicate this is that, as I said before, if you allow money in your political system, money will inevitably end up buying up that entire system.

Barack Obama is in a position where he can't be bought anymore unless he chooses to be. He has one last fleeting chance left to do the right thing for his people.

By Raul Ilargi Meijer
Website: http://theautomaticearth.com (provides unique analysis of economics, finance, politics and social dynamics in the context of Complexity Theory)

© 2012 Copyright Raul I Meijer - All Rights Reserved Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.

Raul Ilargi Meijer Archive

© 2005-2016 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

Catching a Falling Financial Knife