Bill Black analyzes Assistant Secretary of Treasury Brad DeLong statement that neo-liberals should get out of the way and let the left lead since coalition with Republicans did not work A Clinton-era centrist Democrat explains why it’s time to give democratic socialists a chance“The baton rightly passes to our colleagues on our left.”
DeLong, who served as deputy assistant secretary of the Treasury for economic policy in the Clinton administration, who is one of the market-friendly, “neoliberal” Democrats who have dominated the party for the last 20 years. The term he uses for himself is “Rubin Democrat” — referring to followers of finance industry-friendly Clinton Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin.
Yet DeLong believes that the time of people like him running the Democratic Party has passed. “The baton rightly passes to our colleagues on our left,” DeLong wrote. “We are still here, but it is not our time to lead.”
It’s not often that someone in this policy debate — or, frankly, any policy debate — suggests that their side should lose. So I reached out to DeLong to dig into the reasons for his position: Why does he believe that neoliberals’ time in the sun has come to an end?
The core reason, DeLong argues, is political. The policies he supports depend on a responsible center-right partner to succeed. They’re premised on the understanding that at least a faction of the Republican Party would be willing to support market-friendly ideas like Obamacare or a cap-and-trade system for climate change. This is no longer the case, if it ever were.
“Barack Obama rolls into office with Mitt Romney’s health care policy, with John McCain’s climate policy, with Bill Clinton’s tax policy, and George H.W. Bush’s foreign policy,” DeLong notes. “And did George H.W. Bush, did Mitt Romney, did John McCain say a single good word about anything Barack Obama ever did over the course of eight solid years? No, they fucking did not.”https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics ... rad-delong