November 29, 2012

Thursday morning line

Sam Smith - Here's an idea. Instead of raising the entry age of Social Security and Medicare recipients, why not decrease the exit age of useless wars? The two big ones - Iraq and Afghanistan - have cost us $1.4 trillion since 2001 and that doesn't even include the cost of all of General Petraeus' medals. But while the capital elite and its embedded media are happy to take money away from old folks, they don't even mention the exorbitant waste of the  Pentagon.

Instead of worshiping Hillary Clinton, the only First Lady to be investigated by a grand jury and who has helped push us towards the cliff by backing the futile Afghan War, liberals should ask themselves why so little honor has been given three women who tried to stop the Great Recession: Sheila Bair, Brooksley Born and Elizabeth Warren.

They not only made sense on economic grounds, they dared to challenge the political and economic machismo of Washington. In 2008, Katrina vanden Heuvel wrote:
Instead of heeding this oracle's warnings, Greenspan, Rubin & Summers rushed to silence her. As the Times story reveals, Born's wise warnings "incited fierce opposition" from Greenspan and Rubin who "concluded that merely discussing new rules threatened the derivatives market." Greenspan deployed condescension and told Born she didn't know what she doing and she'd cause a financial crisis. (A senior Commission director who worked with Born suggests that Greenspan and the guys didn't like her independence. "Brooksley was this woman who was not playing tennis with these guys and not having lunch with these guys. There was a little bit of the feeling that this woman was not of Wall Street.")
Or consider this from the Atlantic in 2010:
In the course of many interviews about Geithner, two qualities came up again and again.  The first was his extraordinary quickness of mind and talent for elucidating whatever issue was the preoccupying concern of the moment.  Second was his athleticism.  Unprompted by me, friends and colleagues extolled his skill and grace at windsurfing, tennis, basketball, running, snowboarding, and softball (specifying his prowess at shortstop and in center field, as well as at the plate).  He inspires an adolescent awe in male colleagues.
Three of the few people in power who didn't see the jcrisis as just another game were Bair, Born and Warren. And not even liberal women are giving them their due. 


Anonymous said...

Mrs. Clinton stands apart from the others, as in a police lineup, because of her long record. Meryl Streep would have a hard time handling a biopic that starts in PA, moves on to the Goldwater Girl, Illinois, her father's business and family, the valedictorian address (which many in her generation recall), Yale, Berkeley, Arkansas (to which a major motion picture long ago was devoted), Whitewater, Mena (to which a pbs documentary was devoted), the White House, New York State, Spring 2008 as Strom Thurmond's daughter, a list of dramatic turns as long as Nixon's, deserving its own Ken Burns mini-series. The risk is that the bid to be first female president could turn out to be a rerun of Sunset Boulevard. A wary GOP should adopt the mindset that they start out down roughly 538 to 0 and work from there.

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