Saturday, October 8th 2011, 7:49 AM EDT
U.S. President Barack Obama: How have things come to this
As America approaches the third anniversary of Barack Obama’s historic election victory, the country is mired in economic gloom.
Expectations were absurdly high in the autumn of 2008, stoked up not least by the victor’s own campaign team. Yet Americans now seem bemused by how, exactly, it could all have gone so wrong.
In the run-up to his election victory, Mr Obama won praise for keeping quiet about the economy. It was the time of the collapse of investment bank Lehman Brothers, and the financial situation was shifting quickly: since it was hard for anyone to predict what would come next, silence seemed wise.
However, some suspected that this reticence betrayed something worse than caution: cluelessness.
Installed in the White House, the new President chose Washington insiders such as Timothy Geithner (a former central banker) to be Treasury Secretary, and Larry Summers (who had held that post under Bill Clinton) to be his chief economics adviser.
Both men had, in different ways, been complicit in the policy mistakes that had devastated the U.S. economy. Their appointment suggested the Obama administration would have no new, radical ideas to improve the economy.
That has turned out to be so. The old problems have persisted, and in some cases have become worse.
After three years, the U.S. national debt is a breathtaking $14.8 trillion.
Clck source to read FULL report from Simon Heffer