The Standard looks to resurrect Barack Obama's tattered liberal credentials.
Liberals are useless aren't they? It doesn't matter how many times they get betrayed/shafted/deceived by their leaders they can be guaranteed to return for another good kicking up the backside.
A few days ago Barack Obama, a president who has allowed over 43 million Americans to sink into poverty while he has bailed out his mates on Wall Street, made what can be described as a cynical attempt to portray himself - yet again - as a 'champion of the people'.
In a speech in Osawatomie, Kansas, Obama laid down his so-called liberal credentials.
This was not only a sick joke but a direct insult to the tens of millions of Americans who have suffered under his 'progressive' presidency. They have lost their jobs, their homes and their futures. Obama wants to use their despair - which he is directly implicated in causing in the first place - as a convenient trading card to get him back into the White House for another term of kissing the ass of big business and Wall Street.
But all of this is of little consequence to his liberal supporters who have been desperately looking for some kind of indication that Obama isn't just another 'man of the system'.
So they have grabbed Obama's Kansas speech with both hands.
Take Robert Reich for instance. Reich is Professor of Public Policy at the University of California bit, more significantly, he was secretary of labour under President Bill Clinton.
He's a mainstream Democrat - a bit of a Keynesian - who has felt badly let down by Obama.
But in a column titled 'The Most Important Economic Speech of his Presidency ' Reich, on the basis of one cynical speech , welcomes Obama back to the liberal fold. All is forgiven!
Here, finally, is the Barack Obama many of us thought we had elected in 2008. Since then we’ve had a president who has only reluctantly stood up to the moneyed interests Teddy Roosevelt and his cousin Franklin stood up to. Hopefully Obama will carry this message through 2012, and gain a mandate to use his second term to take on the growing inequities and game-rigging practices that have been undermining the American economy and American democracy for years.
But Obama's speech, ironically, doesn't contain any answers for addressing 'the growing inequalities' that Reich hopes Obama will take on during a second term in office.
Indeed Obama's only solution is the kind of silly drivel we've heard spewed by New Zealand politicians for many a year:
In today’s innovation economy, we also need a world-class commitment to science and research, the next generation of high-tech manufacturing. Our factories and our workers shouldn’t be idle. We should be giving people the chance to get new skills and training at community colleges so they can learn how to make wind turbines and semiconductors and high-powered batteries.
This is the sort of rubbish we heard from Goff and the Labour Party during the election campaign and which convinced no one.
The answer to the crisis is not 'training' or 'upskilling' - or whatever this week's buzzword is - but jobs. But Obama has presided over massive job losses.
Indeed just a few weeks ago Reich himself wrote:
'So many jobs have been lost since Mr. Obama was elected that, even if job growth were to match the extraordinary pace of the late 1990s—averaging 300,000 to 350,000 per month—the unemployment rate wouldn’t fall below 6% until 2016.'
But there's nothing in Obama's speech that even hints at a solution to the jobs crisis - the very speech that Reich praises.
It's not surprising that the Labour-aligned The Standard has chosen to republish Reich's column in full. The website, after all, embraced all the hype about Obama and 'change you can believe in' and has been compromised ever since.
But now The Standard is prepared to believe the lie that Obama is on the side of 'the 99 percent'. It would rather swallow this rubbish because if it didn't its lazy and opportunistic writers might just have to come to some uncomfortable conclusions about the reality of American capitalism.