Official motto of
the White House economic team: Those who can, do. Those
who can`t, fantasize in the classroom, fail in
Washington and then return to the Ivy Tower to train the
next generation of egghead economic saboteurs. Life is
good for left-wing academics. Everyone else pays dearly.
Austan Goolsbee, please. President Obama`s
University of Chicago econ professor arrived in
Washington in December 2008 to fill two slots: chief
economist/staff director of the president`s Economic
Recovery Advisory Board and member of the Council of
Economic Advisers. In September 2010, he replaced CEA
head and fellow academic Christina Romer, who retreated
to the University of California at Berkeley last August
when unemployment hit 9.5 percent. (She infamously
projected that the Obama stimulus would hold the jobless
rate below 8 percent.)
task: translating all of the administration`s
big-government theories for us dummies. As Goolsbee
put it to his university`s student newspaper:
"We`ve certainly seen in previous crises that it`s quite important to
explain things to non-experts. The American people can
confront any challenge if they`re comfortable with the
And what exactly
was the nature of Goolsbee`s vaunted expertise? Making
money as a business rescue-and-recovery expert without
ever having had to meet a payroll.
Goolsbee, the 15th
wealthiest member of the Obama administration, has raked
in assets valued at between $1,146,000 and $2,715,000.
He also pulled in a University of Chicago salary of
$465,000 and additional wages and honoraria worth
$93,000, according to
magazine. As I`ve
noted before, the government research fellow and
Obama campaign adviser was a
champion of extending credit to the un-creditworthy.
2007 op-ed for The
New York Times, he derided those who called
He preferred to describe them as
the mortgage market" to expand the pool of
recent "innovation": the
White Board," a weekly video lecture teaching
everyone else how to hitch what remains of America`s
free-market system to the wagon of the state and how
much (or rather, how little) we should make doing it. He
illustrated his grand interventionist strategy to pick
"Startup America" winners by drawing a trough of
broken light bulbs (symbolizing entrepreneurial ideas)
piling up in a "Valley of Death" because they lacked government support.
A comical choice of
imagery given the Democrats`
enviro-nutty ban on incandescent bulbs. But I
joined Team Obama, the unemployment rate was at around 6
percent. When he announced his resignation on Monday,
the jobless rate stood at 9.1 percent. Romer and Jared
Bernstein (former chief economist to Vice President Joe
Biden) had predicted unemployment would drop every
single month after August 2009 due to the Obama
stimulus. Bernstein bailed on the administration in
April 2011 for the sanctuary of a liberal think-tank.
He`ll also now ply his failed wares as a financial
These hapless command-and-control ideologues were
Peter Orszag, who hung his
Accomplished" banner over the White House budget
office in June 2010 after fewer than two years on the
job, and by former National Economic Council head and
hedge fund manager
Larry Summers, who was caught sleeping on the job—literally—more
than once during his brief tenure. Summers packed his
bags in September. He was followed by Princeton
economics professor and former top Obama Treasury
Department official Alan Krueger in October 2010.
White House aides
have lamented that the economic team is
Apparently, Obama is tired of hearing from them, too.
The Hill newspaper reports that he has stopped receiving
daily economic briefings that were once treated with the
same emergency status as national security briefings.
So, the central planners continue to be paid to
fail—while their boss looks the other way at the
destruction, whistling into what he calls America`s
Nice non-work if
you can get it.
CREATORS SYNDICATE, INC.
is the author of
Invasion: How America Still Welcomes Terrorists,
Criminals, and Other Foreign Menaces to Our
for Peter Brimelow`s review. Click
for Michelle Malkin`s website. Michelle Malkin
is also author of
Unhinged: Exposing Liberals Gone Wild
and the just-released
Culture of Corruption: Obama and his Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks & Cronies.