Those fears that the US Stimulus Bill will spark a global trade war remain, despite the re-assuring words of Paul Krugman.. Several reports note more warnings from the EU and elsewhere, whilst a detailed SF Chronicle report notes, “The administration is reviewing that provision” – Irish Eagle also has a couple of posts on this too. Here it’s a welcome change to see that a local politician appears to get it – “If we learned anything from the outcomes and policy mistakes of the 1930s it is that beggar my neighbour policies of economic protectionism and nationalism are ultimately self defeating and leave us all worse off.” And no it isn’t Mr Wilson. Meanwhile Obama’s flexibility on the short-comings of his nominees has been raising eyebrows.. and has prompted a New York Times editorial calling for Tom Daschle to “step aside”. But the New York Times is also re-assuring readers that it’s evidence that “Mr. Obama has proved willing to compromise.”
Mr. Obama is running into crosscurrents that bedeviled his predecessors. Jimmy Carter promised a new day in Washington after Watergate but still found top associates caught up in scandal. Bill Clinton promised the most ethical administration in history and then endured the most independent counsel investigations in history. Mr. Bush vowed a new era of responsibility only to be accused of selling out to energy and military industries.