As of now, I am in control here, in the White House

The Curious Case of Larry Summers

Sometimes I really wonder. I really do.

Like, for example, here’s a question for you. What is the only area of American life where people are routinely awarded for failure?

Think about it. What do you think?

Attempted murder.

Why do you generally get less of a sentence for attempted murder? I mean, your intent was exactly the same as if you had committed murder. It’s just that you screwed it up.

Of course, I thought that was the only time we rewarded failure in this society, until I started really covering politics as a reporter.

Which brings me Larry Summers.

Larry Summers asleepEverybody in Washington is talking today about the possibility that Summers will be appointed Federal Reserve Chairman by President Obama. And many also are discussing the economy’s distressing 1.7 percent percent second quarter economic growth rate, which is only a bit less distressing than the 1.1 percent first quarter growth rate. AND NOBODY IS LAUGHING OUT LOUD?

No, not about the economic growth rate, but about the fact that Larry Summers was President Obama’s chief economic aide for nearly two years, and the economy IS STILL SPINNING AROUND IN THE TOILET, and now he’s up for Fed chairman. Why is he being considered for a giant promotion?

The White House of course routinely says Obama and his trusty Larry Summers may not have solved every problem, but they prevented things from being worse after the financial collapse. Which is a little like saying, I’m sorry my dog pooped on your lawn, but at least he didn’t poop in your house.

I mean – apologies, new metaphor – even if you claim you saved the corporation, at some point stockholders want a return on their investment or you’re out anyway, right?

Larry Summers has a proven record of failure. Which in the nation’s capital really doesn’t present much of a problem. Because, I mean, in Washington, it’s all other people’s money anyway.

36 Responses to The Curious Case of Larry Summers

  1. People like Larry are the reason Dan Hicks wrote “How Can I Miss You When You Won’t Go Away?”.

    Or perhaps little less PC,,,Larry Summers is like a cold sore.

  2. I cannot imagine why the man who is intent on making all Americans wards of the state would want to hire a failure. It is beyond me.

  3. Not only was Summers a principal architect of the 2008 financial collapse (de-regulating credit default swaps), along with Greenspan, he lost $1.8 Billion while ‘managing’ the Harvard Endowment Fund during his tenure as President. He fits in nicely with Obama’s plan to destroy the country.
    ***My bet is Janet Yellen will get the spot.

    How Larry Summers Lost Harvard $1.8 Billion

    • A drop in the bucket for Harvard. If figures are current, investments of Harvard Management has a value of close to $30 billion. While the market flailed the group still raked in 7%.
      Summers’ net worth is $20 million.

      • No doubt…Harvard is doing well, Sadie. But at the time Summers left Harvard the loss was 27% of $6B . He wanted to invest 100% of the cash assets but was forced to settle for only 80%. He left without so much as an apology.

        • Delayed employer mandate on Obamacare will cost $12 billion. By sheer coincidence, no apology from Obama.

          Maybe Summers is a bargain. sarc off/

  4. Keith, you show no credits, but did you take the photo? BTW, I loved when Rush said that Obama has brought into fruition all the things discussed in faculty lounges the past 30 years. Larry Summers is one of those ‘lounge lizards’.

  5. actually Keith, there’s one other job that sorta rewards failure–football coaches.

    sure, if you’ve had a few losing seasons you’re going to be fired. but you’re also a cinch to be rehired somewhere almost immediately

    in the pros, there just aren’t enough football coaches. we may need to start importing them.

    in college, even a losing season at an NCAA Division I school can get you a nice gig at a small off-conference college somewhere in north Florida.

  6. We know Obama’s intent is to destroy America as both a Constitutional Republic and a capitalist and free market country. So of course he reawards failure. And corruption. And liars. And deviants. And Marxists. And blacks who are racists. And America’s enemies.

  7. Sometimes the answer is very simple; they can’t find anyone else they trust to do the job or they can’t find anyone qualified willing to be the point man/woman in an impossible situation.

    There are a 100 and 1 reasons why our economy is swirling, and one person, no matter their position, can turn it around. Regulations, restrictions, impossible goals, and of course, Obamacare all need to be addressed and revised or eliminated by Congress to even start a full recovery. Not gonna happen soon.

  8. I suspect Summers is being used by political operatives inside the White House to make Janet Yellen appear reasonable. And to provide a semblance of suspense. Do not listen to what Obama is saying. Summers is unqualified and exactly the wrong personality type for the Fed. Obama and everyone inside the Fed knows this. Yellen, on the other hand, is a real danger. She has spoken of the need for a zero Fed Funds rate until 2017. Remember that inflation is the friend of government: it drives down the debt load and increases revenue. Her mission will be much higher inflation, justified by “full employment.”

  9. Since when was being competent a pre-requisite to having a high-level government position? The list of “competent” elected or appointed government officials is pretty small and shrinking by the day…

    • Melvin, the analysis did not imply all. Obama had plenty of help. Summers is as pure as a newborn babe.

      Barack Obama’s chief economic adviser, Larry Summers, received hundreds of thousands of dollars in speaking fees last year from firms that have direct financial interests before the government or are intimately involved in the White House’s bank relief programs. [May 2009]

      Skagen Funds, $60,300, (1/10/2008)

      Skagen Funds, $59,400, (1/11/2008)

      JP Morgan, $67,500, (2/1/2008)

      Itinera Institute, $62,876 (1/8/2008)

      Citigroup, $45,000 (3/3/2008)

      Goldman Sachs Co., $135,000, (4/16/2008)

      Associon de Bancos de Mexico, $90,000, (4/3/2008)

      Lehman Brothers, $67,500, (4/17/2008)

      State Street Corporation, $45,000, (4/18/2008)

      Siguler Guff & Company, $67,500, (5/7/2008)

      Hudson Institute, $10,000, (05/28/2008)

      Citigroup, $54,000, (5/30/2008)

      Investec Bank, $157,500, (6/13/2008)

      Goldman Sachs, $67,500, (6/18/2008)

      Lehman Brothers, $67,500, (7/30/2008)

      Tata Consultance Services, $67,500, (9/21/2008)

      State Street Corporation, $112,500, (10/2/2008)

      McKinsey and Company, $135,000, (10/19/2008)

      Charles River Ventures LLC, $67,500, (11/112008)

      Pricewaterhouse Coopers, $67,500 (9/9/2008)

      American Chamber of Commerce In Argentina, $135,000 (10/7/2008)

      American Express, $67,500 (5/7/2008)

    • And once you get the post, you get to keep it.

      Ambassador to Belgium Howard Gutman, a major Democratic donor, was accused of soliciting prostitutes, some underage, in a park in Brussels—behavior his security team was well aware of. But an investigation into Gutman’s activities was called off by Undersecretary of State for Management Patrick Kennedy, and Gutman remains in Belgium.

      Investigators found what they called “endemic” use of prostitutes by several members of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s security detail, in countries as varied as Russia and Colombia, but received at worst light punishments. The investigation was later “shut down” by the Special Investigations Division. (These accusations are, apparently, separate from last year’s Secret Service scandal.)

      Attempts to interview Brett McGurk, whose nomination as ambassador to Iraq fell apart after it was revealed he’d had an extramarital affair with Wall Street Journal reporter Gina Chon, were blocked by Clinton’s chief of staff Cheryl Mills.

    • Obama is itching to turn Texas from Red to Blue:

      Alexa Wesner – Ambassador to Austria
      After starting Be One Texas, an organization dedicated to boosting Democratic politics in Texas and raising a lot of cash for Obama

    • I know the Dominicans are upset that Obama has nominated a gay as ambassador to their country, but I’m not sure about Spain. Do you know?

  10. Remember “Peter’s Principle”? Summers is being promoted to his ‘highest level of incompetency’! From the readers comments, I can tell that they know about it! jb

  11. The 1.7 growth for the 2nd quarter is only because they changed the GDP calculation. If it was the same as the old, 1st quarter would be .6 and 2nd would be .9. This is the “new” calculation to “have the data better reflect the so-called knowledge economy.” Better known as Obama’s phony calculation to make him look better. Funny part is, the numbers are still REALLY bad!