Sunday, December 07, 2008

Rich on Ruben: "The Citi may never sleep, but he snored ..."

Killer Frank Rich today!

He passes, for now, drinking the Kool-Aid on the Obama Transition, and hones in on, not the big billboard National Security team, but rather the Economic geniuses tapped by the President-Elect.

And, while he slathers some particularly aromatic relish on Lawrence Summers and Timothy Geithner, Rich goes with all the works for their mentor, Robert Rubin.

From 'The Brightest Are Not Always the Best';

Summers and Geithner are both protégés of another master of the universe, Robert Rubin. His appearance in the photo op for Obama-transition economic advisers three days after the election was, to put it mildly, disconcerting. Ever since his acclaimed service as Treasury secretary in the Clinton administration, Rubin has labored as a senior adviser and director at Citigroup, now being bailed out by taxpayers to the potential tune of some $300 billion. Somehow the all-seeing Rubin didn’t notice the toxic mortgage-derivatives on Citi’s books until it was too late. The Citi may never sleep, but he snored.

Ruben may have to use some of his gigantic salary to visit a plastic surgeon, to get the palm-print of Rich's slap off his face.

A few more snips;
Well, nobody’s perfect. Given that John McCain’s economic team was headlined by Carly Fiorina and Joe the Plumber, the country would be dodging a fiscal bullet even if Obama had picked Suze Orman. But I keep wondering why the honeymoon hagiography about the best and the brightest has been so over the top. Washington’s cheerleading for our new New Frontier cabinet superstars has seldom been interrupted by tough questions about Summers’s Harvard career or Geithner’s record at the Fed.
No doubt the Pavlovian ovations for the Obama team are in part a reaction to our immediate political past. After eight years of a presidency that valued cronyism over brains (or even competence) and embraced an anti-intellectualism apotheosized by Sarah Palin, it’s a godsend to have a president who puts a premium on merit. I also wonder if a press corps that underrated Obama’s political prowess for much of the campaign, demeaning him as a professorial wuss next to the brawny Clinton and McCain, is now overcompensating for that mistake. No one wants to miss out a second time on triumphal history in the making.
There's much more rips on Ruben, so, go read Frank Rich's 'The Brightest Are Not Always the Best'... It's a great read!

Bonus Riffs

Robert Reich: Citigroup Scores

Hilzoy: Who's In Charge Here?

Brilliant at Breakfast: So why DID we just throw a truckload of money at Citigroup then?

The Heretik: And the Smart Money Is On . . .

Top Ten Cloves: Things About Citigroup Keeping Stadium Sponsorship After Getting Government Bailout

Breaking ... Obama Team Vetting Food Tasters

1 comment:

GDAEman said...

Rubin has Egg on his Face, really.