Mr. President, You Can’t Please These Guys

September 4th, 2011 at 1:57 pm

So the White House does what business wants it to do and suspends the implementation of an anti-pollution regulation.  And what do I read in my WaPo this AM?

“I do not have a sense of the administration’s philosophy here or where or how they determine to draw a line between economic impacts versus outside organizational pressures,” said R. Bruce Josten, the top lobbyist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which represents the nation’s businesses.”

As I and others are busy pointing out right now, suspending rules like this is very unlikely to have any impact on jobs—Krugman thinks it goes the other way.  So if there’s a reason to do it, it’s political.  That is, it enables the administration to counter the accusation that they’re tough on business (never mind that corporate profits are through the roof).  And it gets you—or should get you—the support of business in the public debate.

And, in fact, the WaPo reports that “the Chamber heaped praise on the White House for its ozone decision.”  But it goes on:

“But Josten, who said he is in frequent contact with White House Chief of Staff William Daley and other top officials, said the administration “still has a heavy hand” with hundreds of regulations in the pipeline, from those affecting the environment to labor and capital markets.”

And believe me, even if the White House withdrew all of those regs from the pipeline, they’d still face the same opposition.   You can’t please ‘em, so you might as well just focus on the folks who are really struggling.


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3 comments in reply to "Mr. President, You Can’t Please These Guys"

  1. Michael says:

    More and more, it feels like the appropriate Presidency to understand Obama is the Andrew Johnson Presidency. A man of weak ideology seduced by monied interests into providing awful leadership, who was eventually discarded.

  2. markg8 says:

    While I agree the ozone deal doesn’t make sense from a negotiating with Republicans standpoint or trying to curie favor with big business it may be useful with low info voters. That’s about the only justification I can see for his preemptive capitulation strategy but for the life of me I don’t see how it works.

  3. general c. san desist says:

    …here’s their playbook, an out of print Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal 1932-1940 by William E. Leuchtenburg. I obtained a copy by chance & lo & behold, the exact same tactics & rhetoric was used back then…to the letter.

    Get a copy from you local internet book hawker…amazon has plenty, but few under $20 USD. A must read for all interested parties in the historical record & the subsequent revisionist version…Cheney comes to mind.

    A book like this goes a long way toward shutting down the rhetoric of the radical right…that includes Perry & Demint. Seems Paul can never get out all he is thinking thus freezes up too often.