Ron Paul has Barack Obama’s number

Three months ago I wrote this about Barack Obama:

But, Obama is yet another centrist, triangulating New Democrat in the Bill Clinton mold. Don’t be bamboozled by Republican propagandists telling you Obama is running left or that he is a ‘socialist.’ This is nonsense – kabuki theater, if you will. They are merely using Obama’s weakness to gain control of the historical political narrative. In reality, Leftists are absolutely outraged at his legislative agenda.

Obama is a corporatist like other New Democrats of the neo-liberal mold. The schtick – as also used by Schroeder in Germany, Koizumi in Japan and Tony Blair in the UK – is to say the things that progressives want to hear, but do the things that big business wants to be done. You have to give a sop to the base here and there like exempting unions from the healthcare bill’s Cadillac policy tax. But, the goal is to curry favor with big business, which is the paymaster of both established parties in the U.S.

Grading Obama’s economic policy after one year

Now, it seems Ron Paul is on to the Obama neo-liberal con game because he’s saying exactly the same thing (hat tip Mark Thoma). Talking Points Memo reports:

"The question has been raised about whether or not our president is a socialist," Paul said. "I am sure there are some people here who believe it. But in the technical sense, in the economic definition of a what a socialist is, no, he’s not a socialist."

"He’s a corporatist," Paul continued. "And unfortunately we have corporatists inside the Republican party and that means you take care of corporations and corporations take over and run the country."

Paul said examples of President Obama’s "corporatism" were evident in the heath care reform bill he signed into law last month. He said the mandate in the bill put the power over health care in the hands of corporations rather than private citizens. But he said the bill wasn’t the only place where corporatism is creeping into Washington.

"We see it in the financial institutions, we see it in the military-industrial complex," he said. "And now we see it in the medical-industrial complex."

Not exactly change you can believe in.

  1. Bob Morris says

    Leftists are indeed outraged. Liberals are still mostly stunned, defensive, hoping if they just say the right thing that Obama will magically become one of them. Good luck with that…

  2. Attitude_Check says

    Republicans in the last administration jawboned the conservatives, while they laughed at them behind their back, and handed out money to their corporate friends.

    The only difference between Obo and GW is which group is being publicly pandered to, while the US is “sold by the dollar” (a play on the Who album title “selling England by the Pound”)

    Not much change to believe in there. I hope the left realizes they have been played as patsy’s by the Democrats, just like the right has been played for a patsy by the Republicans.

    I now officially hate them both. At what point is this simple TREASON?

    1. Edward Harrison says

      You might find this post from Tom Schaller on the Tea Party interesting given your comments here. I like Ron Paul, for the record. However, comments like the ones we hear from JXXXD are the kinds of things one sometimes hears from his followers or from tea party sympathizers. It’s good to see Paul out saying something quite different.

      1. Attitude_Check says

        Interesting, but that article from 538 demonstrates some absolutely AWFULL use of statistics. The whole set-up was fatally flawed from the beginning. Either the author(s) is a tool of a TP enemy (could be either left or right), or their grasp of analysis is very poor. Sadly they may have a point, but not based on that analytical drivel

    2. praxis22 says

      Galbraith: “the new industrial state” (google books)
      Also an Abridgement and a review by his son Jamie:

      Is very good at describing the status quo ante in terms of “selling a country” goes, from the cover note:

      The United states is no longer a free enterprise society, Galbraith argues, but a structured state controlled by the largest companies. Advertising is the means by which these companies manage demand, and create consumer “need” where none previously existed. Multinational corporations are the continuation of this power system on an international level. The goal of these companies is not the betterment of society, but immortality though an uninterrupted stream of earnings.

      Of course Galbraith, besides being on of the greatest economists of the 20th Century, is also a Keynesian, and thus a communist, even if he did profess at Harvard.

      “Everyone knows that!” :P

      1. Edward Harrison says

        Good one, praxis. :)

  3. JXXXD says

    Nonsense Mr. Harrison. And Ron Paul is wrong too. Obama is a Marxist / Progressive. By definition this means evolution not revolution. He detests corporate America and he’ll take care of all the corporations soon enough. The people need to be fed and we aren’t an agrarian society anymore. A certain level of efficiency must be maintained or the people will starve. Obama will tolerate some level of corporate activity as he winds down economic demand and wealth. The goal is “social justice”. The truth is, if he gets his way, he will end up making us all equally poor. That includes less, but “equal”, medical care. The human suffering will be intense. But it will be “fair”. Fair as in you don’t know what medicine wasn’t invented to save your life because it is no longer feasible for a coropration to risk hundreds of millions of dollars researching a new compound and getting it approved for use. But no one else gets the medicine iether so it is “fair”.

    Marxist / Progressives don’t know how to run a complex economy, therefore they will make it less complex by killing off activity. Ironically, and deadly to the people, they think they are smarter than everyone else incuding the founding fathers.

    That ice cold stare of Obama gives him away as do his 17 minute rambling answers to simple questions.

    1. Edward Harrison says

      You are making claims that are not substantiated by the facts. Ron Paul pointed to a number of examples that demonstrated Obama’s commitment to corporate America (on health insurance, banking , etc). Yet you have done nothing to refute these examples. Rather, you make the spurious claim “By definition this means evolution not revolution.” In what way. Which marxists have proposed this? If you had a shred of evidence to support your view, it might be more believable.

      1. JXXXD says

        No time to write a research paper, but really, isn’t it obvious.

        Yes, Obama supported banks, and GM for the sake of the UAW. But all they
        did was sell their souls to the devil. You can’t turn an aircraft carrier
        (USA economy) on a dime, but give Obama time. He aims to turn it – HARD

        I’m a capitalist who would have GM and bad banks go to a traditional
        bankruptcy with liquidation.

        And I wouldn’t rescue the corrupt SEIU and their pension fund. Would you?
        (you answer will be revealing )

        They had banks and made cars in East Germany and the USSR. They just weren’t
        very good. The fact that Obam permits industry to exist doesn’t tell you
        much in isolation of other facts.

        True honest Lefties know exactly what Obama is doing and they like it.
        Nutcases that thought corporate America would be shut down in a years time
        are just that, nuts. It will take some time. For that reason, I don’t take
        seriously complaints from the left about Obama.

        The red phone on Glenn Beck’s desk still hasn’t rung disputing facts he has
        meticulously presented.

        Meanwhile, Obama’s approval rating sinks like a stone, and November 2, 2010
        can’t come soon enough.

        1. Edward Harrison says

          My preference would have been for market discipline in all cases – this includes the taxpayer bailouts of pension funds – which was done because Obama wanted to give a sop here and there to the base.

          Look, Larry Summers, Tim Geithner, Rahm Emanuel, Peter Orszag, Robert Gates, and Hillary Clinton are not Marxists. Nor are they leftists. Romer comes the closest to this description. What you’re saying has no basis in fact.

          The reality is that a President’s policy is handled by policy experts in each particular function – and to the degree those individuals have particular views, policy reflects this. One can see this in economic policy with Tim Geithner and the bank bailouts and the bankruptcy of GM and Chrysler juxtaposed to the bailouts at Citi and BofA.

          You are trying to shoe horn a pre-conceived ideological view into a situation where the facts go counter to that view. You would be better served to keep an open mind and let the facts dictate opinion. What you are witnessing has much more to do with crony capitalism and nothing to do with marxism or socialism.

          Try these posts. I think you might learn something if you step away from your preconceptions:

          1. JXXXD says

            (See for a real time update on the economy.)


            Those traditional roles are more moderate individuals, but not influential
            in the WH. Hilary Clinton will resign by Dec 31 2010.

            How do you explain Andy Stern, most frequent visitor to the White House?
            Ron Bloom, manufacturing Czar? Jim Walis (sic) Cass Sunstein and others.
            All absolute devils and in the Presidents ear. These are the people and
            their related organizations who wrote the health care bill and generally
            despise capitalism. I’ve heard the audio, and seen the video and their

            Obama’s grandparents were lefties, his mother was a leftie and his father
            was a communist. Frank Marshall Davis, his mentor in Hawaii was a Marxist.
            In Obama’s book, he speaks of staying true to himself as a college student
            and associated himself with the …”marxist professors” .

            And don’t forget that cold icy stare when before the election he said ”
            we’re just five days away from fundamentally changing America”. Or when he
            told Joe the plumber he favored the redistribution of wealth.

            And I could go on and on.

        2. Edward Harrison says

          That’s the most nonsensical guilt by association conspiracy I have ever heard. It is sad that people entertain these conspiracy theories based on cold icy stares and innuendo about associates or family members when there are a lot of other substantive things to worry about in America. Believe what you want. Good luck.

          1. JXXXD says

            I gave names and referenced facts – their own sayings and writings. They
            are not just smoking buddies of Obama- they are fellow marxist travelers.

            You know all this. Your job is to deflect the criticism about identifying
            Obama as a marxist. I know how the Saul Alinsky game plan works. I have
            the book. ( I bought the book used in order to avoid paying Alinsky estate
            a royalty.)

        3. Attitude_Check says


          Look at the facts on the ground. Under Obama, and Bush, Republican and Democratic controlled Congress during the last 20 years, has all been about shoveling taxpayer money (and future debt obligations) to a small group of power elites. This is not a Left/Right thing THIS IS A CORRUPTION THING!

          I don’t know your motives, but if you are being honest you are a tool being used by these folks. The LAST THING THEY WANT is for people to realize that its all about corruption. They NEED people like you to paint it as a Left/Right debate so they can continue to obscure reality and LOOT the country.

          1. JXXXD says

            i see and agree with you :) about corruption, but it is being used as an
            excuse for a hard left turn – all those old war horses in congress , obama,
            any stern etc

            i fear losing my liberties more than corruption, if i have my liberties, i
            can fight corruption

          2. JXXXD says

            thank you mr harrison for your replies i will let
            you get back to work

Comments are closed.

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More