Monday, February 15, 2010

Subtext : A Strongman to Make the United States Governable

Is this desperate talk about governing opening up the option for a strong leader, to come clean things up ? It's not like the United States has ever been easy to govern.

I suspect ruling class frustration has to do with its inability to break the popularity of entitlements, and the general failure of neo-liberalism. In the United States, neo-liberalism has resulted in stagnant living standards, but it has not been successful at dramatically reducing them. And while resistance is not the type associated with class struggle, like the strikes in Greece last week, it is still persistent in a peculiarly atomized American way. Institutions have become so openly corrupt that people are suspicious about whatever the political class wants.

I wonder if Obama was a last gasp, a last attempt, to put forward a democratic vision of U.S. imperial power. If he fails, pretensions may thrown aside in a way that would make Dick Cheney smile.

1'"We’ve got a Problem in Governing in this Country"' - Financial Times; Paul Volcker Q&A
2'Never Heard That Before' NY Times Opinion, Friedman (the Beijing Consensus)

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