Saturday, February 28, 2009

Change in the Wind?

Having observed a week ago that Obama appeared to be listening more to the voice of David Brooks and his ilk than to the Paul Krugmans of the world, I have to be heartened that Krugman’s response to the President’s Budget Proposal Plan was largely positive. Quoth Krugman:
President Obama’s new budget represents a huge break, not just with the policies of the past eight years, but with policy trends over the past 30 years. If he can get anything like the plan he announced on Thursday through Congress, he will set America on a fundamentally new course.
That’s no small beer (although, quite possibly, an overstatement).

I haven’t read the budget plan in its entirety, and am still worried about some of the signals it sends (for example, he lists the growing obligations of Social Security among the threats to the nation’s economic health), but I’ll go with the “It’s better than I expected” feeling of the moment as long as people don’t start claiming the budget to be farther to the left than it actually is. And frankly I can't shake my suspicion that the plan's title, “A New Era of Responsibility: Renewing America’s Promise,” portends, in the next installment, some “Get off your lazy asses!” to the nation’s poor-- but, hey, I guess we’ll see...