Obama is dressing up old, failed ideas

Author: | Published: 1 Jul 2009

More than six months before he was elected to office, US President Barack Obama stood in front of a white curtain in a black suit and red tie at the Cooper Union and called for a modern regulatory scheme.

"Old institutions cannot adequately oversee new practices. Old rules may not fit the roads where our economy is leading," he told his New York audience.

Since that March 2008 speech the same regulatory institutions have overseen new practices such as the Temporary Asset Relief Programme (Tarp) and the Public-Private Investment Programme (P-Pip) under Obama's leadership. And the old rules have expanded to non-banking institutions such as American International Group (AIG), General Motors and Chrysler.

Obama's refusal to modernise the US regulation system culminated with last month's Financial Regulatory Reform Plan. Rather than build the new foundation the Plan advertises, Obama is using the same regulators and the same rules he dismissed...