I am glad to see the new tone....
Digby added her two cents:
She recalled a Skocpol essay from a couple weeks ago:
The idea that "elites" will "get serious about repairing the safety net" if they are FIRST given billions of dollars of payoffs to shareholders who made bad decisions is the height of naivete. There are no corporatist institutions in U.S. politics that can enforce this kind of bargain, that can corral all the interests and get them to carry through on mutual promises. That is why Obama and the Democrats will get for the people in general exactly what they push through right now and will squander opportunities if they give money and leverage to "elites" first!
This is what Ira Magaziner imagined with health care back in 1992 -- that he could get up front understandings with powerful interests by giving them concessions in the Health Security proposals, and they would let it get through Congress later. (I remember sitting in his office as I took notes for BOOMERANG and having him complain to me that he could not understand why the business roundtable types "lied" to him about what they would do!) Of course, they turned on him the moment Congress got ahold of things. Same thing will happen here.
I noticed in passing that David Gergen is nearly in tears that Obama has betrayed the promise of bipartisanship tonight. He's heartbroken that Obama decided that it was more important to save the economy than kiss GOP hems and bow and scrape before the villagers. No word on the parade of GOP jackasses who've been all over TV laying down the law that the only stimulus they can possibly sign on to is one that would have been written by Dick Armey and Newt Gingrich. It's not as if they've been acting in good faith. (In fact, Huckleberry Graham's multiple tirades today were pretty much a throwdown to Obama's manhood, which is quite a spectacle coming from him.)
At least the spell is broken and the white house will be suffering no further delusions that the Republicans are going to play nice. If they sell out to them, it's because they have decided to do so on the merits. (Now all we have to worry about is the administration playing some kind of equally delusional byzantine inside game with the Blue Dogs...)
What do you think about Obama's Stimulation Package?