The photo at the top of this linked article says it all. An evil-looking Larry Summers, Obama’s National Economic Council director, dominates the scene as a small, blurred Obama speaks in the background.
The article goes on to report on Obama’s willingness to make some compromises on his economic stimulus plan, but that he won’t give up the key provisions. I found this quote from Summers near the end:
Summers said Obama wants to keep his tax cuts but will consider other changes. He said “Buy American” provisions for U.S. manufacturers could “send a protectionist signal.”
President Obama, you need to be very wary of the advice coming from Summers, your Treasury Secretary, Tim Geithner, and others like Paul Volcker and Paul O’Neill. All are on the board of the Peterson Institute for International Economics, a “think tank” whose mission is to promote global trade regardless of the effect on the American economy, and who just today came out in opposition to the “buy American” provision of your economic stimulus plan. Here’s a partial list of other members of the board of the same organization:
- Leszek Balcerowicz, former Chairman of the National Bank of Poland;
- Ronnie Chan, Chairman, Hang Lung Properties;
- Chen Yuan, Governor of the China Development Bank;
- Mohamed A. El-Erian, Co-CEO and Co-CIO, PIMCO;
- Stanley Fischer, Governor of the Bank of Israel;
- Jacob A. Frenkel, Vice-Chairman of AIG and former Governor of the Bank of Israel;
- Maurice R. Greenberg, former CEO of AIG;
- Nobuyuki Idei, former Chairman of Sony Corporation;
- Lee Kuan Yew, former Prime Minister of the Republic of Singapore;
- Mario Monti, former European Commissioner;
- David O’Reilly, Chairman of Chevron Corp.;
- David Rockefeller, former chairman of Chase Manhattan Bank;
- Renato Ruggiero, former Director-General of the World Trade Organization;
- Jean-Claude Trichet, President of the European Central Bank;
- Ernesto Zedillo, former President of Mexico.
When your economic team begins bashing trade measures designed to help American workers, ask yourself whose interests they’re really representing. I know that you see our trade deficit as a huge problem and a major contributor to our financial collapse. And I know that you believe in the concept of having a “team of rivals.” But there seems to be little rivalry on your economic team when it comes to their attitudes about trade, the global economy, and where the American economy fits in their priorities. Is this really a team of rivals or a team of co-conspirators whose allegiances border on treason?