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Larry Summers is leaving his post as the guy who supposedly actually runs the Obama economic team in the middle of the most terrifying national economy since the Depression, and Ezra Klein is blogging about Ryan Avent‘s tweet about how the unemployment rate would be lower if Obama had simply had the wisdom to give Larry Ben Bernanke‘s job instead. (Avent also thinks it would be lower if we extended the Bush tax cuts.)
Meanwhile on Boston-based Twitter, the Boston Reviewclaims the departure was “expected” by Harvard professors “because Harvard only gives two years to work in gov’t before losing professorship.” Jeez really, if only they had enforced that policy, America might have rid itself of Larry Summers back in 1994 and Bob Rubin and Alan Greenspan would have had to find some other asshole to repeal Glass-Steagall with them!
The internet is also saying that Obama wants to replace Summers with a CEO, preferably one with a vagina. My initial reaction to this is that “yes, because CEOs have such a good track record creating jobs in this country” but honestly, since Naked Capitalism and The Big Picture are the only blogs I can stomach on this issue, and both are run by veterans of the vaunted “private sector”, maybe there is something to that.
In other news the New York Times beat out the Washington Post and scored a galley of the new Bob Woodward new war book. Also yesterday, Woodward denied the claims of this guy that he fabricated a deathbed Iran-Contra confession scene with former CIA director Bill Casey. The always even-tempered Kathryn Jean Lopez dubs the book’s primary takeaway, that Obama wants out of a war that is going soooo promisingly now that we have figured out that the way to get supplies and food in and out of the country is by paying protection money to the Taliban, a “scandal.”
Also re Afghanistan, the lead Washington Post editorial wonders, “Why did warnings about murders by soldiers in Afghanistan go unheeded?” referring to this inspiring story from over the weekend. Demanding to know why the desperate warnings of whistleblowers went “unheeded” for so very very long is one of the most important public services an editorial page can serve and I am glad the Post is once again on the case.