Obama: the next FDR or the next Hoover?

It would be hard to imagine Barack Obama acting like FDR did at the height of the New Deal. But then again, Obama doesn’t face a mobilized and militant working class.

Socialist Worker, June 29, 2009

AS THE Obama administration has settled into Washington, some of its most ardent supporters have become unsettled with its failure to seize the opportunity to push through a bold agenda for reform.

Columnist: Lance Selfa

Lance Selfa Lance Selfa is the author of The Democrats: A Critical History, a socialist analysis of the Democratic Party, and editor of The Struggle for Palestine, a collection of essays by leading solidarity activists. He is on the editorial board of the International Socialist Review.

Perhaps the most cutting commentary so far was Kevin Baker’s article, titled “Barack Hoover Obama: The Best and Brightest Blow It Again,” which appeared in the July issue of the liberal magazine Harper’s. Noting that many writers have compared Obama’s arrival in the White House at a time of economic crisis with Franklin Roosevelt’s inauguration in 1933, Baker turns the historical analogy on its head.

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