Friday, November 20, 2009

To Geithner's Defense

Arianna Huffington has been the leader of the anti-Geithner (and Larry Summers) movement and she has a lot of followers at the Huffington Post. She uses the same tactics that the rightwing uses--guilt by association. Conservatives hate Geithner too just because they have an irrational opposition to the Obama administration.
Republican theatrics a la Glenn Beck yesterday was par for the course for republicans. I'm weary of watching republicans be nothing but useless obstacles.
David Brooks says Geithner has done a good job:
The criticism of his plan to stabilize the financial system came from all directions. House Republicans called it radical. Many liberal economists thought the plan was the product of hapless, zombie thinking and argued that only full bank nationalization would end the crisis. The Wall Street Journal asked 49 economists to grade Geithner. They gave him an F.

Well, the evidence of the past eight months suggests that Geithner was mostly right and his critics were mostly wrong. The financial sector is in much better shape than it was then. TARP money is being repaid, and the debate now is what to do with the billions that were never needed. It now seems clear that nationalization would have been an unnecessary mistake — potentially expensive and dangerously disruptive.

The course of events has vindicated the administration’s handling of its first big challenge. Obama could have flinched when the torrent of criticism was at its peak. But the president’s support for Geithner never wavered. Geithner never lost confidence in his policy. Rahm Emanuel mobilized to improve the presentation of the policy. The political team worked hard to deflect criticism from Geithner onto themselves. NYT