Best Laid Plans

Monday, November 17, 2008

Bruce Reed, president of the Democratic Leadership Council, Bill Clinton's former domestic policy adviser, and co-author (with Obama chief of staff Rahm Emanuel) of The Plan, looks at the Obama administration's moves thus far.


Bruce Reed

Comments [28]

Peterson from Westchester

Obama's selection of "Rahmbo," a former Clinton hatchet-man, bodes a new era or partisanship. I can't wait for him to reach across the aisle with his dead-fish-wrapped-in newspaper style of politics.

Nov. 17 2008 05:41 PM
mc from Brooklyn

I hope you weren't one of the ones bashing the "Clinton" folks 6 months ago.

I hope you are doing OK with your medical challenges. I'm alarmed to hear you talk about an oncologist.

Nov. 17 2008 01:01 PM

I couldn't agree more with jawbone. What we need is less regulation. We need the kind of spirit that allows us to turn a blind eye when a company like Ford weighs the cost of settlement when you die in their car due to a faulty part rather than replacing that part. We need to continue to crush individuals who are worth less than $250,000 a year to us.

Nov. 17 2008 11:12 AM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

Part II--

Let’s start with “hopefully.” Hope is not a plan, Sen. Obama.

“Everybody’s learned their lesson”..?? What lesson, Sen. Obama? Seems BushCo has learned they can get away with the national Treasury by scaring and scamming Congress and the people, with the connivance of the MCM. And who does he include in “everybody”?

Then, what makes a regulation “heavy-handed” as opposed to wise and helpful? That whole sentence — “And the answer is not heavy-handed regulations that crush the entrepreneurial spirit and risk taking of American capitalism.” — is lifted whole from Republican talking points. Almost Reaganesque.

Then, that “risk taking” which is “what’s made our economy great” — like those Credit Default Swaps, those risky mortgage schemes cooked up to be flipped to Wall Street and then to the world? How’s that risk taking working out, Sen. Obama?

Oh, and what is this “balance” of which he speaks? My oncologist uses that word when he doesn't know what else will work, when what's left is "hope" and "tincture of time."

I find no solace in hearing talk of “balance” from our future president.

Nov. 17 2008 11:07 AM
jawbone from Parsippany, NJ

From Obama's interview on 60 Minutes Sunday night responsding to this question from Steve Kroft:

K--"How high a priority are you placing on re-regulation of the financial markets?"

O--"I think it’s a top priority. I think that we have to restore a sense of trust, transparency, openness in our financial system. And keep in mind that the deregulation process, it wasn’t just one party. I think there’s a lot of blame to spread around.

But, hopefully, everybody’s learned their lesson. And the answer is not heavy-handed regulations that crush the entrepreneurial spirit and risk taking of American capitalism. That’s what’s made our economy great. But it is to restore a sense of balance."

What to say about this answer-

To be cont'd.

Nov. 17 2008 11:07 AM

Not only are they the types of companies we want to bail out, they are the types of companies we want to invest in. When Ford's Pinto fiasco came out, how many people who owned Ford stock sold it based on principle? I'm betting none. In the countless corporate scandals and wrongdoings since, how many Americans took their money out of a company for reasons unrelated to profit motive? Karma doesn't exist, only because we don't allow it to.

Nov. 17 2008 11:06 AM
Nicholas from Brooklyn

I have been an auto instructor and mechanic for about 8 years now and these auto makers are laughing at us.

In a meeting with Chrysler execs one day, the exec told me that they were not building hybrids for the fuel consumption, in fact, it didn't matter what they got for gas milage. They were just riding the hybrid trend as long as they could. He called it a fad.

Are these the kid of companies we want to bail out?

Nov. 17 2008 10:51 AM
AWM from UWS


The complaints about the website were in the “news” last week.

And no, all of the “Clinton folks” don’t make me nervous.

Iraq, Afghanistan and an unstable and deteriorating economy make me nervous.
There are plenty of real problems out there to make me nervous I don’t need to perceive more in order to satisfy some self indulgent conspiracy premise.

Nov. 17 2008 10:45 AM

Let us bailout Ford and GM and embrace the culture that brought us the Pinto and weighed the value of your life vs cost to replace a part.

Let us continue to embrace a culture which makes the whistle blower unemployable even after he or she is vindicated.

Let us confirm our commitment to an unsustainable future.

Nov. 17 2008 10:32 AM
barry from Manhattan

All the CLinton folks don't make you a little nervous??
That is red flag waving for me. And hardly nitpicking.
They wrote "The Plan" ok.
They are on the team, at the top. Why wait to worry?

(No one mentioned the web site,whatever issue that is but you by the way)

Nov. 17 2008 10:30 AM
Dylan from Astoria

I think Health Care should be dealt with in the beginning of 2010. Maybe start with covering children like Obama promised in the campaign this year. This is too red hot of an issue and will be too risky for fodder to attack from the right.

Federal tax cuts are a terrible idea. Give money to the states to prevent tax hikes there.

Nov. 17 2008 10:29 AM
barry from Manhattan

This guy is the master of "The Plan"
Ok ok were inspired already.
A thousand flowere bloom??
I thought that was a "thousand points of light"?
Ha! What a drag, same guy from the Clinton Admin.
Dog save us all!

Nov. 17 2008 10:26 AM
Mary Bon

full-disclosure: How about introducing Mitchell as Mrs. Alan Greenspan?

Nov. 17 2008 10:26 AM
Susan from Kingston, New York

The Obama Administration needs to move forward on all fronts. If he makes a rescue deal with the Detroit Auto Industry to go green and build fuel efficient cars and trucks, then the American public needs to support this by not going out and buying the large SUV, trucks and gas guzzling cars. If they do go on purchasing these vehicles, they will undermine the push to create a new fleet of green cars and we will back to square one.

Whatever is put forward by the Obama Administration, there needs to healthy debate on the issues and whatever legislation is put forward, the American populace needs to get behind the legislation.

Nov. 17 2008 10:26 AM
AWM from UWS

Wow! A lot of armchair presidents here…

When he spoke about "change" he was referring to how he would run his administration, not how he would carry out his transition. I think that the Clinton people you are seeing here are people who have experience in the White House.

Try to remember, there hasn’t been a non GOPer within a mile of the WH in 8 years and the incoming administration doesn’t have the luxury of breaking in a completely new legion of people. We’ve got two wars and constant mention of a possible global depression and people are complaining about changes to his website and how many of his people worked for Clinton 8 years ago. Oh, the rampant and paranoid nit-picking... please, make it stop!

Nov. 17 2008 10:25 AM
Nick Lento from NJ

If Obama goes the "DLC" route; his presidency will fail miserably.

He needs to go "over the heads" of BOTH the Dem and Rep establishments.

That means going to THE PEOPLE; the same millions of people who worked for his election and contributed money and were active and mobilize them as a political force to create a political demand for root to branch reforms.

Nothing less will do.

Obama is being set up to fail and be a one termer.

He has to grasp the opportunity for radical reforms aggressively or he, and all of the rest of us folks, will be screwed over and over.

Nov. 17 2008 10:24 AM

Oh lordy, here we have a so-called Democrat who thinks tax cuts for the rich are a "great way" to get the economy going, just like GWB, and who doesn't want to point fingers at Republicans....

Isn't change wonderful?

Nov. 17 2008 10:22 AM
Norman from NYC

Look up Newt Gingrich's 1996 GOPAC memo, "Language: A Key Mechanism of Control."

Gingrich recommended using the same words that Obama was using, such as "Change."

Nov. 17 2008 10:21 AM
Kathy from Glen Cove, NY

Bill Clinton's universal healthcare program failed in part because the public wasn't demanding it. It seemed out of left field. The circumstances have changed dramatically since then, and the American public is eager for both a viable universal healthcare package as well as greener cars out of Detroit. What's important for both the US government and businesses is that they satisfy the demands of the public. Detroit waited too long to respond to the need for greener cars and now they're paying the price.

Nov. 17 2008 10:21 AM
Jordana from LES

Even the most basic Adam Smith philosophy speaks to reorganization of labor when there are industry shift.

What about, instead of subsidizing the auto industry, putting that money into paid retraining of those affected workers?

Any idea on the cost differences of that?

Nov. 17 2008 10:20 AM

Can this country make a life change to save it's life?

Probably not. These bailouts are nothing more than the kicking and screaming tantrums of a teenager who lacks the will, character and ability to grow.

How close to bottom will we have to get before we really start looking into a sustainable way of life that does thrive best on conflict, death, and lies?

Nov. 17 2008 10:20 AM
barry from Manhattan

Check out the fear mongering by this guy!
"health care must be dealt with right away"
I thought global warming was the most important issue of the century>Whose side is he on?

Nov. 17 2008 10:18 AM
barry from Manhattan

What is Brian referring to in the Obama vs Bush Clips?
Neither guy said anything of substance about the economy.
The style was identical---political non speak.

Nov. 17 2008 10:17 AM
Norman from NYC

I also read the Wall Street Journal editorial page, and at one time they had a good free-market, conservative critique, but then they turned into a Republican Pravda.

Nov. 17 2008 10:17 AM
barry from Manhattan

Well Norman we all knew that Obama was mostly talk.
Now you see it too.
Democracy Now is a partisan echo chamber. Enjoy.
However for an exchange of ideas, Brian is very cordial to both the left and right.
Obam will try to implement change but will be blocked by the host of Democrats that do not want change only power.

Nov. 17 2008 10:13 AM
Norman from NYC

Yes, Robert, I'm listening to right now.

Former CIA analyst Melvin Goodman and Michael Ratner of the Center For Constitutional Rights are describing how Obama's advisors are the same people who supported, and still support, extraordinary rendition, preventive detention and torture.

Brian Lehrer's show is great, but in pursuit of respectful dialog, he's sometimes too easy on the right. If you want to get to the truth, you really have to balance it out with Democracy Now, which is a bit more aggressive.

Nov. 17 2008 10:03 AM
mc from Brooklyn

"Change" was a brand name seller. Get over it.

Nov. 17 2008 09:45 AM
Robert from NYC

Too many Clinton people returning and to many (one would be too many of these) W people staying on, so where's the "Change". Good program on Democracy Now this morning. If you get a chance to see or hear it, do! Point made.

Nov. 17 2008 09:35 AM

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