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Obama Wants to Be the President Who Rolled Back the New Deal

The president wants to cut Social Security and Medicare to protect the investor class.

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My pet construct is that Obama has a picture too, but it’s a lucky paining, not a beauty painting. It makes Obama look like a winner, so Obama wins. His bad luck goes into that portrait in his closet. But I’m not sure he sold his soul (maybe it was just in indentured servitude) since it does not seem to be working so well of late. Obama had a reversal of his characteristic good fortune when the Supreme Court declared recess appointments to be invalid, which is a serious complication for him.

This “have old people die faster” plan will be contested. The normally complacent public is unlikely to sit by quietly and have its ox gored. Even the Times is not trying to soft pedal what is going on; it’s not using the anodyne language of “chained CPI” but “cutback” and in the headline, no less. Obama may still pull this off, but this will be his most uphill battle to date, and the second-term timing does not favor him. And we can only hope that any magic on his side is ebbing as well.


Yves Smith is the founder of Naked Capitalism and the author of "ECONned: How Unenlightened Self Interest Undermined Democracy and Corrupted Capitalism."

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