Monday, March 24, 2008

Out of control

In scaring their populations into war, both leaders also shattered many of the assumptions that we held about democratic states. We can no longer believe that liberal democracies avoid wars of aggression, or that they tend to fight only when absolutely necessary. We can also no longer assume that democratic governments will make careful and responsible arguments to their populations, or that governmental oversight and a healthy civil society will act as a check against fear-mongering. We can no longer rely on our open marketplace of ideas to ensure that suspicions are not treated as facts in our public discourse
-- from Michael Boyle on Iraq's most worrying legacy
In retrospect, it’s clear that the Clinton administration went along too easily with moves to deregulate the financial industry. And it’s hard to avoid the suspicion that big contributions from Wall Street helped grease the rails. Last year, there was no question at all about the way Wall Street’s financial contributions to the new Democratic majority in Congress helped preserve, at least for now, the tax loophole that lets hedge fund managers pay a lower tax rate than their secretaries. Now, the securities and investment industry is pouring money into both Mr. Obama’s and Mrs. Clinton’s coffers. And these donors surely believe that they’re buying something in return. Let’s hope they’re wrong.
-- from Paul Krugman on Taming the Beast

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