The Confusion, Part III

“If you want it like hell, you will get it like hell”
Anonymous

obama_running_like_hell

Those who listened to what Obama said during the campaign, and believed it, will be surprised as Treasury’s transfiguration into a xenophobic kleptocracy.

Those who read this blog, however, will not be.

The problem is not that Barack Obaam is a xenophobic kleptocrat. The problem is that Barack Obama has no idea what to do.

I’m not saying this because, when I ask myself “Who can fix the global economy?,” “A lawyer!” is not the answer that springs to mind. And I am not saying this because Geithner appears to be a uniquely awful chocie as Treasury Secretary. As I said last June:

Obama as Bush III – a guy of slightly more than average intelligence whose first term will be a triumph of cabinet politics over whatever Obama actually believed coming in — would be a good thing. If Obama is as incompetent as he appears, his incompetence ceases to be an issue, because he would not be able to implement his ideas

However, Obama has not been content to let others make important decisiosn for him in a deliberate fashion. He has wanted results, badly. Obama wanted results like hell, and he got them like hell.

Consider two recent stories:

Big Bonus Plants at AIG
American International Group, the insurer that has received more than $170 billion in taxpayer bailout money from the U.S. Treasury and Federal Reserve, plans to pay about $165 million in bonuses to executives in the same business unit that brought the company to the brink of collapse last year.

and

US bank withdraws offers from H-1B grads
It did not take long for the chilling effect of new restrictions on hiring skilled foreign workers on H-1B visas to be felt. Bank of America has withdrawn job offers to foreign MBA students set to graduate from U.S. business schools.

If you read down in the stories, you see the AIG story happens because the Obama administration, in spite of simultaneously being the company’s largest shareholder and largest credtor, has no leverage in this circumstance. The Bank of America story happened in response to the two “Buy American” bills that Obama has signed into laws.

Of course, Obama did not plan these outcomes. Obama did not plan Treasury actions that give hundreds of millions to people who did the worst job in the history of the world and publicly high-skilled kick foreigners out of the country. What Obama plans has little relation to what he plans.

Obama is an incomeptent in a hurry. Obama wants to fix the economy like hell. That explains why Obama is fixing up the economy like hell.