25 January 2009

Change we can believe in?

On President Obama's first full day in office, he signed strict new 'transparency' rules, including regulations on the revolving door between K Street and government. Apparently those rules were signed a little too quickly because he turned around two days later to request an exception to these new rules to allow William Lynn to be the new Deputy Secretary of Defense. Mr. Lynn was a lobbyist until last month. This about face turned out to be too much for Campbell Brown on CNN, who pleaded with the Obama Administration to enact 'actual transparency.' On a slightly less serious note, The Technology Liberation Front is griping that the administration is violating transparency commitments by not immediately posting documents related to meetings with non-governmental entities.

So what do you think? Is this the kind of change the voters were hoping for?

In the meanwhile, the proposals for a 'Bad Bank,' to absorb all bad (or potentially bad) holdings by major banks (in the hopes of freeing up the credit markets) have now risen to as high as $6 trillion. These allocations would be on top of the stimulus proposals (running between $700 billion and $1 trillion), and on top of the allocations from last year. At this rate, the debt burden from the 2008 - 2010 fiscal years won't be paid for at least six generations. That's not the kind of change I'm hoping to pass on down to my child and future generations.

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