What If ? HOLC

One of the dumber things we do is speculation how a different President may have acted if they had been in President Obama's place. No one knows. That said, via Balloon Juice, this Dana Milbank column that plays the "what would Hillary have done?" game, misses the biggest what if - HOLC over HAMP. Milbank writes:

Clinton, for example, first called for a 90-day foreclosure moratorium in December 2007, as part of a package to fight the early stages of the mortgage crisis with a five-year freeze on subprime rates and $30 billion to avoid foreclosures. But an Obama campaign adviser dismissed Clinton's moratorium, saying it would "reward people for bad behavior."

Clinton's more important proposal was HOLC:

I've proposed a new Home Owners' Loan Corporation (HOLC), to launch a national effort to help homeowners refinance their mortgages. The original HOLC, launched in 1933, bought mortgages from failed banks and modified the terms so families could make affordable payments while keeping their homes. The original HOLC returned a profit to the Treasury and saved one million homes. We can save roughly three times that many today. We should also put in place a temporary moratorium on foreclosures and freeze rate hikes in adjustable-rate mortgages. We've got to stem the tide of failing mortgages and give the markets time to recover.

The time for ideological, partisan arguments against these actions is over. For years, the calls to provide borrowers an affordable opportunity to avoid foreclosure as a means of preventing wider turmoil were dismissed as government intrusion into the private marketplace. My proposals over the past two years were derided as too much, too soon. Now we are forced to reckon with too little, too late.

As a result, the home-mortgage crisis slowly eroded the value of debt instruments upon which Wall Street firms were depending. That is how this house of borrowed cards began to fall. If we do not take action to address the crisis facing borrowers, we'll never solve the crisis facing lenders. These problems go hand in hand. And if we are going to take on the mortgage debt of storied Wall Street giants, we ought to extend the same help to struggling, middle-class families.

The HOLC proposal garnered bipartisan support, as John McCain also proposed a HOLC.

And it is not too late for President Obama to embrace HOLC. He does not need Congressional action and the HAMP money remains largely unused. It is still time for HOLC.

Speaking for me only

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    Nobody could have predicted... (5.00 / 6) (#1)
    by lambert on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 05:09:39 PM EST
    Hate "what ifs" when the potential for (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by rhbrandon on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 05:10:07 PM EST
    hate and discontent is still very high.

    That being said, Obama needs to swallow his pride and move leftwards and adopt HOLC. It's still not too late to prefer We the People over Wall Street.

    Don't think he'll do it, however.

    Well (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 05:10:44 PM EST
    didn't he say the other day that he wasn't interested in helping people keep their homes because it might be helping people who didn't deserve them?

    I admire your grit and determination with issues BTD but I don't know how this is ever going to happen. First of all, the GOP is basically a knee jerk operation that will be against anything Obama proposes even if they previously would have supported something like this. Secondly, I don't think (or know rather) Obama has the fight in him that is needed to do an HOLC. Perhaps I'm wrong here but I just don't see him doing it.

    I think he said it was just tooooo (5.00 / 5) (#9)
    by Joan in VA on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 06:37:38 PM EST
    difficult to figure out who was deserving and who wasn't. So let's just proceed as if every bankster is deserving and every citizen isn't as we have been. Easy-peasy!  

    Blame the victim. (none / 0) (#22)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 10:16:32 PM EST
    it might be helping people who didn't deserve them?

    Blaming the victim...a VERY Republican strategy.


    ah, but he was the most progressive leader since (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by kempis on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 08:21:25 AM EST
    Bobby, Martin, and John.

    God, I resent the pundits and bloggers who fell for that crap and refused to examine what he actually said, not what they wanted to hear.

    That said, if someone tells him it's real bipartisan thing to do, maybe he'll try it. He's apparently repenting for being too partisan at times in the past two years. Seriously. And he's promising a more civil tone.

    This is what happens when you toss the keys to the White House to a guy whose experience in politics at the national level was limited to two, pain-free years.


    Yes, (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 09:27:21 AM EST
    but the bigger is are we going to learn anything?

    We should learn that:

    1. Experience does matter.
    2. Bipartisanship with crazies will destroy the country.
    3. People don't respect wimps.
    4. College professors do not make good presidents.
    5. The blogger boyz are horrible at picking candidates.
    6. Being a media darling is worth a warm bucket of spit and letting the media choose our nominee is a huge mistake. Never forget the media is the one that choose Bush too.

    7. Being an extraordinarly (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by oculus on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 10:44:58 AM EST
    politician may be meaningless if the goals of sd. politician do not comport with the voters' goals.

    Yes were all worse off that (none / 0) (#36)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 01:28:21 PM EST
    the three leading Democratic Canidates had served at most a term and a half in the Senate, too bad that the  more experienced canidates like Richardson, Dodd and Biden were left to the wayside.

    Oh, and your meltdown in 2012 when Obama easily wins re-election will be classic.


    Meltdown? (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 01:44:40 PM EST
    Why? Did you have a meltdown when he got his butt kicked last week?

    Frankly, I could care less whether Obama gets reelected or not since we are going to get GOP policy anyway. It's a win/win for the GOP at this point. You think that as long as you get elected it's okay even if you don't do anything.

    I'm not sure Obama is going to run again. He seems bored and over his head. He never was that interested in policy anyway.


    Obama didn't (none / 0) (#49)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 02:30:42 PM EST
    get his butt kicked last week- Congress did, just as Congress got trounced in 1994, 1982, 1978, 1946, 1938, etc. - Obama himself is still an odds on favorite for re-election and is +/- 5 in approval disapproval depending on the polls one reads- all of this despite being president in a bad economy, all in all the public likes Obama and dislikes congress now he has the opportunity to play off of them.

    His (none / 0) (#53)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 02:46:46 PM EST
    reelect number is 39 according to Jerome over at MYDD. That doesn't say that he can't turn it around but it's not looking like he can judging from the 60 minutes interview.

    You obviously don't think that the GOP is really that crazy either. Whatever.


    I'd be willing to put money on Obama getting (none / 0) (#54)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 05:29:01 PM EST
    re-elected, frankly I don't think it will be much of a contest- I'm not going to trot out the well-used canard about both Reagan and Clinton being significantly lower at this point in their respective primaries- rather I'm going to bring up Harry Reid- by any conventional measure Reid should have loss- his disapproval toped 55% for almost all of 2010 and is probably around there right now- and yet he won, why? Because the GOP nominated an unelectable canidate and as of right now by far the most widely supported GOP presidential canidate is Sarah Palin- someone whose negatives make Sharron Angle look like a political genius. Given this, and the fact that Obama's approval is consistently between 45 and 50% its pretty easy to bet on the guy.

    The fact (none / 0) (#59)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 06:43:09 PM EST
    that Reagan and Clinton were significantly lower actually undercuts your point because Carter and Bush II were higher and didn't get reelected. Right?

    Sarah Palin is NOT going to be the GOP nominee. They are talking about Romney being the nominee. You must not have been keeping up on what's going on in the GOP. They know Palin can't win and therefore are going all out to make sure she doesn't get the nomination.

    Your whole argument is the one that Obama keeps making that "you have nowhere else to go". How did that work on a large scale last week? People do have somewhere else to go and it's called sitting home. Lots of women sat home because they were rolled under the bus. At some point in time, you simply cannot arrogantly expect everyone to show up for you.


    Actually, that's not "well-used" (none / 0) (#64)
    by Yman on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 09:01:17 PM EST
    That's a brand new canard.  The usual canard goes something like "Obama's in pretty much the same position/approval as Clinton was during this time ...."  Suddenly, Reagan and Clinton are now "significantly lower".  Of course, not in reality.  In reality, at this point in their administrations, Reagan was at 43% approval and Clinton was at 46%, compared to Obama's current approval of 45%.  All of which, conveniently ignores the fact that Obama started with an approval rating higher than anyone since JFK, and Clinton started trending up and up from December of his 2nd year onward.  Wanna place a bet on Obama doing the same?

    So yeah .... drag out the "old" canard if it helps you, but the new one is just fantasy.  Heck, ...

    ... even the old one won't work anymore after December.


    BTW - The poll also notes that Palin ... (none / 0) (#65)
    by Yman on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 09:15:43 PM EST
    ... is not the leading Republican choice.  She's third at 14%, behind Romney (20%) and Huckabee (21%).

    "Odds on favorite"? (none / 0) (#63)
    by Yman on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 08:50:14 PM EST
    Says who?  I wouldn't put any stock in polls two years out from an election, but the latest poll has Obama losing a matchup against Romnee (50-45) and Huckabee (52-44).  But at least he beats Palin (52-44) and (barely) Gingrich (49-47), but the latter, being within the margin or error, isn't very comforting.

    BTW - The most recent polls actually range from +5 to -9, with an average of -3.5, so it's not like it's really just an even average.


    So far "What if?"... (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by Dadler on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 05:16:54 PM EST
    ...could be a general tagline for this administration.

    It's never too late, but when there (5.00 / 4) (#5)
    by Anne on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 05:31:41 PM EST
    is always a reminder from Obama that we don't want to help people who don't deserve it, I think the chances of him embracing a HOLC program - especially when he thinks HAMP is doing a good job - are razor-thin.

    If someone could convince him that HOLC would be good for banks and bankers, he might be able to pull the trigger on it, but I don't think he has advisors who would do that.

    Really, the president who couldn't put single-payer on the table, but has no problem putting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid on the table, isn't going to get behind HOLC; even if it makes all kinds of economic sense, it's not helping the kinds of people he respects.

    If you could get the Dems in Congress behind it, the chances might improve, but with all the "let's work together" talk circulating around DC, I don't like those chances, either.

    Is it to late to appoint Hillary Secretary of (5.00 / 2) (#6)
    by mogal on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 05:43:29 PM EST
    Saving the United States?

    Perhaps she could get Rubin to pitch in (none / 0) (#7)
    by Rojas on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 05:46:10 PM EST
    or Pile-On.

    May be promise a return (none / 0) (#37)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 01:29:28 PM EST
    to the Good times when Alan Greenspan ran the fed and Deregulation was awesome!

    Good Democrats Reinvent Government (none / 0) (#67)
    by Rojas on Tue Nov 09, 2010 at 01:37:50 AM EST
    Republicans deregulate. There's a difference in there, somewhere I think. I reckon there has to be with all these new found liberals extolling the virtues of one over the other.

    O.K. no more "what ifs" (5.00 / 3) (#8)
    by NYShooter on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 06:27:58 PM EST
    How about "what is?" and "what is" is fugget `bout Obama. He's a lost cause.

    I can't believe what I'm hearing and seeing; we've got millions of people ready, willing, and able to take the fight to the forces of evil, be them political parties, banksters, or other assorted criminals,  and he`s in there negotiating the terms of surrender. Does he even realize he's the President of the United States of America? He's acting like a schoolboy whose been called up to the Vice-Principal's office. Is there no limit to the humiliation he's willing to subject himself to, and by proxy, us?

    I've wondered out loud here, and elsewhere, whether there's "something wrong" with Obama. It's either that or begin preparing ourselves for the real possibility that he's simply a coward. Is this his "Waterloo?"  Up until the Presidency he's, and I don't know a better term for it, conned his way to all his "successes." And now that it's no longer a game of skipping from one lily pad to the next on his way up the ladder, Bam! He wakes up, and realizes, "Holy Sh!t! What just happened? I'm the President? Oh.....my...God."

    If nothing else, who was it that said their goal was to "live in interesting times?" Well, tighten  your chinstraps, boys & girls, it don't get more interesting than this.  

    Great idea! (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by Inspector Gadget on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 06:53:31 PM EST
    Let's focus on fixing what we already have! We have who we have in congress and the WH. Moping around kicking the sand with a list of "if only's" and "what ifs" coupled with non-stop predictions for more of the same is just a distraction from the work the people need to do.....FIX WHAT WE HAVE using the tools in the toolbox.

    There are plenty of blogs still out there lamenting that Hillary isn't in the oval office. Personally, I wanted her there, but wasn't kidding myself that the media and the opposing party would be relentless in their efforts to make sure everything she tried to do would fail. But, that kind of focus is nothing more than a distraction and an excuse for not doing anything. If only. We had it within reach and it was snatched away. Long past time to get over it.

    No organized efforts have given rise to a new liberal party, no magic leaders have come out of the shadows to challenge the sitting congress, and no public displays of discontent are being called for. Do Americans live under the TBTF philosophy? Do they think it can't get worse? Obama told us what he thinks he did wrong. We need to correct him and write letters, to him and our reps. Call a beer summit....this is a teaching moment that would be a real shame to have slip through our fingers...but, reality is, XX% of the people won't even take the time to write a letter.

    WE own our government, WE need to remember that. And, WE need to tell them what we want.


    But I don't think she is a coward. n/t (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by sallywally on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 07:34:56 PM EST
    No one said she is a coward (none / 0) (#18)
    by Inspector Gadget on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 08:52:08 PM EST
    I said she isn't the president. She's not the problem that needs to be fixed, and it is nothing more than empty chatter to discuss what she might have done.

    this is true (none / 0) (#25)
    by kempis on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 08:34:31 AM EST
    It's gratifying in a cathartic way to let loose about how the Democratic party made a massive mistake in going for Obama--and he was the party's choice. That was evident from February on when many party leaders began to continually ask "why won't Hillary quit?!"

    But reliving those days doesn't help matters. Those who were Hillary-haters/Obama-philes won't apologize for their choice, and if they did, it wouldn't undo the damage. And kicking this stuff up again only reopens festering wounds. Many of us lost friends during the 08 primaries, and the resentments still linger. No point in re-fighting lost battles. Better to follow Hillary's lead and look ahead.


    one problem with looking ahead . . . (5.00 / 2) (#30)
    by nycstray on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 10:41:05 AM EST
    it's f'ing depressing these days . . . .

    So true (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by Inspector Gadget on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 12:49:20 PM EST
    venting helps. But, at some point people must realize nothing, absolutely nothing, gets fixed and the complaining gets tiresome when it never has actions toward resolution. All the energy used crafting the same dim, pessimistic, doomsday debate points would be put to better use on paper, in an envelope on the way to the people who really need to be taken by the shoulders and TOLD they are beholding to US.

    Our elected officials, ALL of them, are void of mindreading skills. They need to be told over and over until they grasp the fact they are being watched, and are indebted to the voters.



    I agree, and (none / 0) (#66)
    by NYShooter on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 11:42:07 PM EST
    you'll notice I didn't mention Hillary.

    I guess my point is that the rot in my Democratic Party is complete, through & through, corrupt, rotten, and living in a universe in which We are not welcome.

    The Tea Party uses a slogan I wish we would adopt, "Take Our Country back."

    We have a tough road to hoe, all the centers of power we once could count on: The Presidency, Congress, the Supreme Court, the Media, are all aligned against us. It's time to go "underground," grass roots. Trust no one, and begin actions, individuals first, that hopefully would swell into a real, powerful movement that bypasses all traditional avenues for change.

    The Tea Party did it. I realize it was manufactured by sinister, billionaire bums and made to look like a spontaneous, populist uprising, but the fact that it happened so fast shows there are people outside normal paths eager to attain their goals in non-traditonal ways.

    Screw the Democratic Party; let Donna Brazile and Evan Bayh have it!


    I don't think Obama's a coward either (none / 0) (#38)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 01:31:24 PM EST
    what she and Obama are is moderates, both had more progressive images projected on to them by some of their supporters and all of their partisan detractors.

    Obama (none / 0) (#40)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 01:45:46 PM EST
    is a coward and that's the problem that a lot of people have with him.

    Watching Obama's interview (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by Makarov on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 07:25:58 PM EST
    on 60 Minutes now.

    He's still living in bi-partisan dream land. It's the only thing he knows.

    "We need to tackle big issues like entitlements." What a joke.

    Your "dumb" "speculation" (5.00 / 6) (#12)
    by Pacific John on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 07:31:41 PM EST
    ... is what some of us call, "history." One of the truly dumb American cultural traits is to say it's all "water under the bridge," to strenuously not learn from the past. As I said at AC, Millbank's a d*ck, but he does admit he was wrong.

    You're right, of course, about HOLC. Millbank's generally right about the economy and respect for working class voters - which, btw, I have a thing or two to discuss, since I spent about 6 months in working class HRC networks. Never, since I started organizing in the mid-90s, have I run into such well informed voters as I did along the Rio Grande, and elsewhere is various working class areas. They had specific policy reasons for voting, one of the biggest of which, you, BTD, dismissed: health care. They voted for a clear-eyed policy with three simple legs, not gobbledygook. They supported sound economic policy, which, as here with HOLC, has been discussed. But they also had a clear understanding that Obama's ed policies were Bush III, well before the NEA verbalized it. (Wait for that to hit the fan, for another wave of confession and remorse, BTW). Smart voters, way smarter than the cool kids in superior entitled classes. Health care, the economy, education. Their thinking was deadly, and they were shunned from the party because they, actual voters, were such a threat.

    Ever wonder why the party and the press strained to ignore the Hispanic voting bloc, or that the bloc voted by 70/30 (as you did an excellent job illuminating at the time) identically with the working class of all other non-AA ethnicities? Here in the Southwest, we got whiplash going from being the future of the party to being stuffed in a basement.

    The thing the party and the lib blogosphere needs to ask themselves is why the base was so right, without simply dismissing their rock solid predictions as "dumb." After all, it's not like they got much honest information from a party or national media who tried to drown opposing viewpoints with a tsunami of bias. Why? Why were those dumb hicks and Bunkers, Brazile's unnecessary working class whites and Hispanics so much smarter that the Creative Class?

    That's what any competent organization would reflect on as a rational lessons-learned postmortem. I've never seen a successful organization that couldn't handle this kind of process.

    My "speculation?" Respect the actual voters. That might be a way for a party and a country to be successful.

    Thanks PJ, (none / 0) (#17)
    by ghost2 on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 08:44:30 PM EST
    articulate, as always.

    Good god (none / 0) (#41)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 01:48:42 PM EST
    It never ever dawns on you people that the base also voted for Obama, I swear its like some of you guys don't even regard African-American voters, (as well as to a lesser degree) the young, the more highly educated, etc as part of the base at all. No, only lower middle class white people, and apparently hispanics (though god knows if Hispanics had voted for Obama you'd toss them out to after all they aren't part of the "classic base").

    Given that the base was split and the primary was reasonably close- what exactly could the party have done that wouldn't have been seen as "shunning" one part of the said base for another part of it- seriously, do you not see how deciding in Denver that Hillary "represented the base" would have been an even worse "shunning"- I mean honestly I'm not sure how exactly that could have been done that wouldn't have been seen (probably correctly) as an insult to all those who voted for Obama and to African-Americans in particular- it would've said "Hey guys we know you vote for us at a 90% clip, and we know one of your own finally won the nomination by the metric we've used for decades but we think the White lady should take it instead, but don't worry there's room at the back of the bus and your guy can still be in the administration."

    Frankly, there's nothing to say that one side was smarter than the other side and if anything after said other side also told us that "Obama could never win the Presidency because he doesn't appeal to lower class whites and because much of the party will vote McCain" and was proven to be very, very wrong its a pretty high bar for any of us to take them seriousy but hey lets all enter the land of imagination: I mean sure Obama actually got through HCR- something that every Democratic President since Truman has tried and failed to achieve but hey maybe Hillary could've done better after all its easy to argue a counterfactual even one that seems on its face to be implausible.

    As far as Education goes, Obama's single biggest iniative in that area- taking over student loans is a massive improvement, the other areas are debatable- while I don't agree with all of the approaches its hard to doubt that Education Reform is needed, and that accountability needs to be applied. Look, I hate to say it but in education the union has had some negative impacts (along with having a ton of positive ones) we need to be able to say this without it somehow being a massively partisan statement- I mean no one has a problem with saying something like the AMA has had both positive and negative effects on American Healthcare so why is saying the NEA has had both positive and negative effects on public education seen as a controversial stance?


    Obama doesn't believe in it (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by ruffian on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 07:51:54 PM EST
    Not gonna happen, especially with a Republican House.

    I can't play the speculation game anymore.

    Obama does seem to believe in (5.00 / 2) (#15)
    by MO Blue on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 08:01:13 PM EST
    cutting the "entitlement programs." Defaulting on the government's obligation to the people who have paid into the system should make Wall Street, the Conserva-Dems and the Republicans very happy.  

    Let me repeat! (5.00 / 3) (#16)
    by ghost2 on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 08:38:51 PM EST
    One of the dumber things we do is speculation how a different President may have acted if they had been in President Obama's place. No one knows.

    But some people were telling the rest of us rubes that there was not a dime of difference between Obama and Clinton policy-wise, and that he will have a better chance of getting things accomplished since he was a media darling.

    You don't get a pass, no matter how cute you want to play it now, and make fun of others for their ventures into unknowns, without holding yourself accountable.  

    Um, yeah (5.00 / 2) (#19)
    by Pacific John on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 09:12:00 PM EST
    I was so busy at the time, I sort of forgot the dynamic that even here, significant policy differences were minimized.

    Like I said earlier, wait until BHO's ed policies are exposed to the voters.


    My prediction was that Obama would not be held to (5.00 / 2) (#27)
    by jawbone on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 08:51:19 AM EST
    his campaign promises or Dem principles by either the MCM (Mainstream Corporate Media) or the DC Dems. Congressional Dems would be afraid to take him on, which I think is pretty apparent.

    I am relieved to see that the voters do hold him accountable. Too bad only Congressional, state, and local Dems were around to be punished in this election.

    I believed that Hillary would have been called to account, by both the MCM and the Congressional Dems. And she knew she would have to hold to her campaign statements, that she would get no passes from the powers that be. Or the people.  For that reason, I felt she would be a better president for all the people: Voters would know what they were getting, and she would be more bound to her word, her promises to the people. Like Bill, if she felt she had to break a promise, she would actually explain it logically to the public.

    The Dems should draft her for 2012 -- after Obama evaluates his position and realizes he needs to spend more time with his family. In Chicago.


    IMO, Hillary Clinton was not backed (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by oculus on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 10:47:37 AM EST
    by party leaders in Congress and Super-Ds precisely because of her stated goals, which they did not share.

    "Not a dime's worth of difference on (none / 0) (#20)
    by oculus on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 09:21:21 PM EST
    policies I care about."

    But (5.00 / 2) (#21)
    by ghost2 on Sun Nov 07, 2010 at 09:51:52 PM EST
    He does seem to care about the difference between HOLC and HAMP, as evidenced by this post.

    Plus, I can't possibly see how a liberal could not care about policies that affect real people, and have real life ramifications.  

    BTD focused on 'media darling', and in the process missed the elephant in the room, Hillary's focus on the liberal, populist, and pragmatic policies.  


    Being (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 06:26:07 AM EST
    a media darling is worth a warm bucket of spit in the long run. Look no further than Bush who was a "media darling" and how did that one turn out?

    Media darling (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by sj on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 09:28:40 AM EST
    I actually thought (from time to time) that I was just too cynical, because my first thought on hearing about O's media-darling status was:

    Why?  Who finances him and why?  What is the up-side to corporate America if he becomes president?

    That was then.  Now we know.


    Tincture of time, plus recent awareness (none / 0) (#32)
    by oculus on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 10:46:25 AM EST
    and research.

    You speak as if you think (none / 0) (#43)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 01:53:34 PM EST
    something like HOLC could have ever actually been established- I'm not arguing whether its a good policy or not, but given the fight on HCR how on earth would something even more "socialist" like HOLC have gotten 60 votes in the Senate?

    Because (none / 0) (#46)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 02:11:31 PM EST
    Obama isn't willing to fight for anything you seem to think that "nothing can be done".

    Good grief. Clinton got SCHIP through with a Republican congress and Obama can't do anything with control of the entire government? You're more than stating he's completely inept.


    Really, you think SCHIP (none / 0) (#47)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 02:22:13 PM EST
    is all that hard compared to say a massive loan-forgiveness/cramdown program?   I mean if you want to use Clinton comparisons lets do so- Clinton was able to get SCHIP through a Republican congress but couldn't even get HCR to a vote despite controlling the entire government- huh its almost like one was far, far smaller and easier to do or something- no wait that can't be it maybe its just that Bill Clinton was incompetent until he managed to lose both the House and the Senate.

    It's always (none / 0) (#51)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 02:39:33 PM EST
    something isn't it? I doubt Obama would have even been able to get SCHIP through with the entire government.

    As far as what he did get--HAMP he doesn't even enforce it so what he did get through is a joke. I've been trying to get a loan modification through and they tell me they've lost the paperwork etc. Where do you go for recourse when the banks aren't doing what they are supposed to be doing? They know Obama is a wimp and they can walk all over him so they just do what they want despite any legislation he may or may not pass. Look no further than the insurance companies laughing in his face.

    Obama passing HCR was a disaster. It's a BAD bill. It's better to pass nothing that to pass a horrible bill don't you think? Obama has ruined health care reform for quite a while now. The GOP will run against it in '12 again you better bet and we shall see how that turns out.

    After getting his butt kicked, does Obama fight back? No, he lays down even more.

    And if you are judging by losing congress, then Obama is worse because he lost MORE seats than Bill Clinton did. I seem to remember Obama people like you guaranteeing us that Obama wouldn't lose any seats in the midterm and he lost a freaking ton of seats. If Obama had 55 seats to start out, he would have lost the senate too would he have not?


    2 things (none / 0) (#55)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 05:32:42 PM EST
    first of all considering Obama passed not just a massive expansion in Health Care- something inarguably more ambitious than SCHIP but also passed a massive expansion in SCHIP with little fanfare in 2009 its hard to take your prediction seriously.

    Secondly, can you just answer straight out- was Clinton lucky his attempt to pass health care went down in Flames? I'm just curious because its establishment of a cartel via the 5 largest insurers sure doesn't seem anything like say a public option.


    Obama did NOT pass (5.00 / 1) (#58)
    by nycstray on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 05:53:06 PM EST
    a massive expansion in Health Care-

    he passed a massive expansion on mandated health insurance :)


    Obama (none / 0) (#60)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 06:49:36 PM EST
    did not expand healthcare. He just mandated that people buy junk insurance with little choices.

    I don't know if Clinton was lucky when it went down in flames but he might have been. If it was something that the country didn't want at the time like Obama's then it certainly helped his electoral prospects long term whereas passing HCR might be Obama's waterloo.

    You see here's the difference between Clinton and Obama--you knew what you were voting for with Clinton. He said he was going to do certain things and he them or tried. Obama has stabbed everybody in the back has he not?

    I remember during the primaries every group he went before he told them what he wanted to hear. So now people are mad because he promised everything to everybody and no one can deliver that. His obsessive fetish-ness with approval from the right wing is going to be his downfall.


    Well, as it turns out, there's not a dime's worth (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by jawbone on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 08:43:10 AM EST
    of difference between Obama's policies and...BushBoy's!



    And this is just crap (none / 0) (#44)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 01:57:19 PM EST
    Compare Obama to Bill Clinton if you want- I think Obama's marginally better on most issues, dramatically better on Financial Issues, and a bit worse on Civil Liberties (I think Civil Liberties are a lot easier to be a good guy on during Peacetime- its why the single worst Presidents on Civil Liberties during the 20th century were two Democratic Presidents- FDR and Wilson during two World Wars and why Lincoln has such an incredibly mixed record on the same). But comparing him to Bush betrays either a lack of knowledge into Obama's actual achievements or a bias against the man.

    He said that because there really wasn't (none / 0) (#42)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 01:51:41 PM EST
    they both had there pro's and con's but on the whole both were moderate Democrats and frankly, nothing we have seen since changes any of that- while I have personally have my doubts on whether Hillary could have ever gotten HCR through, I'm sure her partisans will say it would have happened and been better, the same holds for almost every issue- light of the actual evidence speculation one way or the other is as BTD has repeatedly stated pointless.

    The problem (none / 0) (#45)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 02:10:13 PM EST
    is that Obama made it an omnibus bill when it didn't have to be. He's not smart that way.

    How exactly could Obama have passed HCR (none / 0) (#48)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 02:27:10 PM EST
    piecemeal- the two largest pieces- the mandate and the ban on pre-existing conditions (for both children and adults) are inextricably linked, he could I supposed have passed grants to study high risk pools, to allow children on insurance until 26, and to expand Medicaid (say in light of the recession- though given the difficulty in passing extensions to unemployment benfits I have my doubts on the last one)- but doing so would have been regarded as small middling achievements without the big items mentioned at the top- the pre-existing conditions and mandate portions.  And don't pretend like you would have credited him at all if he'd done HCR without those two items- after all Obama's massive expansion to SCHIP is never even mentioned by most of his detractors- because it occured in early 2009 not in 2010 with the rest of HCR.

    So (none / 0) (#52)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 02:44:05 PM EST
    he have passed the mandate preexisting condition bill last or he could have just done a bill for preexisting conditions and just let the GOP vote against that. He is not smart in politics like that.

    Once again, you are saying that Obama can't do this or can't do that because of x, y or z. The reason Obama can't do it is because he really just doesn't care. It's all about checking off items on a list. It doesn't matter that he's slinging crap as long as he can mark if off of the list.


    So you actually think it would have been better (none / 0) (#56)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 05:36:03 PM EST
    to play politics with something like a ban on pre-exisiting conditions rather than actually accomplish something- no wonder you regard a Presidency with little lasting achievements other than the popularity of its Commander in Chief (well and I guess DOMA- don't forget Clinton stood tall and stopped the gays) as a great one- when by any conventional historical measure it was one of little note that had the luck to occur during the largely illusory tech boom.  

    No (none / 0) (#61)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 06:55:16 PM EST
    I talking smart politics with passing it.

    As it is right now, what's the chance of keeping the preexisting clauses? The GOP is probably going to undo it and he's got it wrapped up in this mess of a bill that is easy to attack because NOBODY is going to read it.

    So you're saying that Clinton was lucky and poor little Obama is sooo unlucky.

    Weren't you telling me the other day that DADT was going to be repealed in the lame duck session. Well, it's not. Once again, Obama stabs people on the back.

    And as far as DOMA goes, well that certainly wasn't one of Clinton's best moments but the stabbing by Obama goes on unstopped and people like you are just enabling him more. When this disaster sets off right wing rule in 2012 what are you going to say then? You sound like you really want the GOP to control everything. Obama is destroying the party little by little. He's making the party stand for nothing. Of course, what would you expect from a guy who votes "present".


    My favorite part of the Millibank (none / 0) (#35)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 01:25:44 PM EST
    column was the bit where he said Hillary would've folded on Health Care but gotten the popular parts through- you know the ban of pre-existing conditions and a couple of other things- which betrays an ignorance of the terms of the debate which is almost shocking in a guy who writes about politics for a living.  Well, that and the part where he claims that by folding on Health Care Clinton would have been able to get policies with if anything even less democratic unity (much less Republican support) through: things like Climate Change/Enery legislation-- there is literally zero chance a Senator from West Virgina will vote to establish regulation which would in the longterm kill the Coal industry-- or Immigration Reform-- which might have happened but would have been at the very least as heated as the Health Care Debate and may have been disasterous in the short term (though its still the right thing to do both morally and politically in the long-run).  

    correct me if i'm wrong, lol!~ (5.00 / 2) (#50)
    by nycstray on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 02:34:22 PM EST
    but irrc, HRC was NOT going to tackle health CARE reform right away. wasn't she going to concentrate on something like jobs/economy first?

    Millibank's article (none / 0) (#57)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 05:37:04 PM EST
    seems to think she would have somehow gotten Climate Change/ Energy legislation through because she would have folded on HCR.

    welp, there's a prob there (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by nycstray on Mon Nov 08, 2010 at 07:08:00 PM EST
    ya can't fold on something you aren't even working on . . . .