This will end well:
President Obama pressed Wall Street bankers at the White House on Monday, urging them to make more loans and modify mortgages to help taxpayers who propped their banks up with federal bailouts.

"My main message in today's meeting was very simple: America's banks received extraordinary assistance from American taxpayers to rebuild their industry," Obama said. "Now that they're back on their feet, we expect an extraordinary commitment from them to help rebuild our economy."
I'm sure they'll get right on that.

I've obliquely touched on this before, but one of the things I dislike about President Obama is the naiveté and arrogance of his insistent assumption that if only he just expects people to behave better, they will.

Don't get me wrong: I'm all for expecting more, but I'm also for consequences. If telling people this is a safe space, exhorting them to behave decently, and expecting it were enough, I wouldn't need a commenting system that allows banning and a handful of moderators. Being a leader who expects more also entails giving people the tools to succeed, the path and means to meet those expectations. Obama has done naught but give the people from whom he expects more every reason to fail to live up to those expectations. No consequences.

And, worse yet, he's shrugging off responsibility to the people who got us into this mess in the first place. When they inevitably fail to meet his expectation to transform overnight from avaristic scoundrels to fair-minded altruists, shrugging his shoulders and saying he's disappointed in them isn't going to be good enough.

This is not leadership. This is foolish indulgence. It's misplaced trust. It's a rejection of accountability. It's willful ignorance of reality. It's capitulation. It's not leadership. Not even close.

Btw, I love this note stuck in the middle of the story: "Policymakers have little power over bankers who have their own priorities, namely, making money."

Indeed. Especially when they refuse to make policies that would actually forcibly realign those priorities for the good of the nation.

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