Archives for White House

Our future will be a regulated one

The Obama administration proposes to vastly expand federal oversight of the U.S. financial system. There is broad agreement that a new, more powerful regulatory framework is needed. For the moment -- at least, until the economy turns around -- the laissez-faire, deregulatory types are in hiding.

The plan would establish federal regulation of the larger hedge funds -- meaning their books would be open; derivatives trading -- the downfall of several big investment houses; and large insurance companies -- to avoid a repeat of the AIG flameout.


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Americans on Obama: Still too early to tell

Americans are furious at Wall Street bonuses and wearied by job losses, but many seem ready to give President Barack Obama more time to deal with the nation's economic crisis.

After his second prime-time news conference to defend the decisions he's made since taking office two months ago, Obama appears to enjoy the confidence -- or at least the patience -- of ordinary Americans anxious about the economy.


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Geithner set to unveil regulatory crackdown

The Obama administration is proposing an extensive overhaul of financial regulations in an effort to prevent a repeat of the banking crisis last fall that toppled once-mighty institutions and wiped out trillions of dollars in investor wealth.

Officials said the administration will seek to regulate the market for credit default swaps and other types of derivatives and require hedge funds to register with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner was scheduled to outline the proposals in testimony Thursday before the House Financial Services Committee.


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Barack Obama, your inexperience is showing

President Obama, your inexperience is showing once again -- as is that of one of your most visible employees.

One of the most common mistakes made by inexperienced politicians is inappropriate use of humor. Take, for example, joking about the depressed economy. If you're a two-term state senator, maybe you can be excused for joking about the economy or laughing about it. When you're president of the United States, it's inexcusable. Yet, Obama made that exact mistake in an interview on CBS' "60 Minutes." Interviewer Steve Kroft called him on it:


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Obama vows to ‘bend but not break’

With Congress pushing back against his proposals for energy, taxes and other matters, President Barack Obama is taking a bend-but-don't-break posture.

He will compromise on certain details if he must, he signaled at his news conference Tuesday evening, but not on the heart of his key initiatives.

His strategic retreats are a nod to political reality. He is angling to avoid confrontations he probably can't win, but to sacrifice no more than is absolutely necessary.


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Fact checking Obama’s claims: Yes, but…

President Barack Obama's plea Tuesday for patience in the economic turmoil fits with the view of most economists that a turnaround will take some time. It doesn't fit quite so neatly with his bullish budget.

The president's spending plans and deficit projections rest on the assumption that the economy will post solid growth next year after a mild, further decline this year. Many economists think that's too rosy.

Obama was more cautious than that in his prime-time news conference — possibly to the point of having it both ways.


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Wall Streets gets giddy over rescue plan, but…

With the economic system of the United States and perhaps the world on the line, President Barack Obama and embattled Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner had to sell a reluctant and skeptical Wall Street that their bank recovery plan had the right answers.

Based on Monday's rally in the stock market, it appears they may have made the sale.

The jury is still out on whether or not the plan and accompanying rally are sustainable but the initial reaction gives the administration some hope after a prolonged public flogging on the AIG bonus debacle and other missteps by the young administration.

For Geithner, this became a "do or die" moment. Failure Monday would have meant his job. For Obama, it became a critical test on his administration's ability to produce something with positive results.


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Obama moves to dampen anger over AIG bonuses

President Barack Obama is trying to dampen a fire he once stoked, urging a more tempered response to public furor over bonuses paid to executives of the publicly rescued insurance giant American International Group.

Obama is virtually certain to use Tuesday's prime-time news conference to continue an effort that began over the weekend: cooling the anti-AIG ferocity, now that it threatens to undermine his efforts to bail out the nation's deeply troubled financial sector.

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Are the wheels falling off Obama’s bandwagon?

The same mainstream media that fawned over President Barack Obama during his historic run for President and the early days of his young, yet struggling administration, are now stepping back and asking serious questions about his policy decisions and actions.

Newsweek notes that Obama is seriously underestimating the depth and probably length of the current financial crisis.


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Harsh reality derails Obama’s optimistic rhetoric

Barack Obama's optimistic campaign rhetoric has crashed headlong into the stark reality of governing.

In office two months, he has backpedaled on an array of issues, gingerly shifting positions as circumstances dictate while ducking for political cover to avoid undercutting his credibility and authority. That's happened on the Iraq troop withdrawal timeline, on lobbyists in his administration and on money for lawmakers' pet projects.


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