Archive for March, 2009
President Obama, we hired you to make sweeping changes, not to be a servant of the status quo. Yet on the economic crisis in particular, you seem to be a prisoner of a complacent, self-serving orthodoxy that is preventing you from doing what needs to be done.
If we’re going to learn anything from the economic crisis we’re in, we need to make sure that the same elites aren’t in power coming out of it that got us into it to begin with.
There were scenes of jubilation in Pakistan today at the news that Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry has been restored to his role as Chief Justice. Chaudhry has become a popular hero for holding powerful elites accountable before the law, and his restoration means that a popular movement has won out over those same elites.
We need to admit that it may be impossible to return to the magical days of easy growth and abundant resources. What if this is a crisis of scarcity? What if much of what we’ve called wealth for the last fifty years was illusory? Even the best policies will never rebuild what we had, if our way of life was unsustainable in the first place.