And Westen is not alone. Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman wrote a scathing column titled "The President Surrenders" after Obama signed the bill last week. Krugman predicted the dramatic market drop we're seeing today and argued that Obama should've used a legal maneuvering to side step the debt-ceiling hostage-taking by the Republicans in Congress:
"At the very least, Mr. Obama could have used the possibility of a legal end run to strengthen his bargaining position. Instead, however, he ruled all such options out from the beginning.
"But wouldn't taking a tough stance have worried markets? Probably not. In fact, if I were an investor I would be reassured, not dismayed, by a demonstration that the president is willing and able to stand up to blackmail on the part of right-wing extremists. Instead, he has chosen to demonstrate the opposite.
"Make no mistake about it, what we're witnessing here is a catastrophe on multiple levels."
A catastrophe is exactly what this feels like. The president gave yet another economic pep talk to the people today in an attempt to calm the markets, and they instead dropped another 150 points. We need FDR-style leadership and programs, not FDR-style fireside chats that use lofty words to say nothing. A masterful chess game? Seems more like "Jenga." Pull out one more piece, one more failed policy and our entire system will crash to pieces.