Even after pointing out how Occupy fell short and how a little agreed-upon focus might have prolonged the movement and allowed it to grow strong, Occupy did succeed spectacularly at their basic goal: changing the American conversation about the economy.
Bill de Blasio was propelled in just a few weeks from obscurity to victory by two factors: his willingness to attack Mayor Michael Bloomberg's policies and his embodiment of the New America's core values of diversity and inclusion.
Looking backwards at this debacle, it's clear that Obama's economic team did not serve him well, either substantively or tactically. Summers as chair of the Fed was always going to be a lightning rod, because of his temperament, his sketchy record as president of Harvard, his close association with the deregulation that invited the financial collapse, and the high-profile consulting gigs on Wall Street that he took since leaving government in 2010. Tactically, what unfolded in August and September was bizarre. Instead of the administration vetting Summers for hidden confirmation problems, deciding that he was an acceptable risk, and Obama announcing the appointment, what we got was a slow drip of leaks that Summers was the president's first choice. But that only served to rally Summers' opposition. It would have been much more difficult for opposition within the Democratic Party to fester if Obama had simply announced his choice.
As I said all along, we have had two strong candidates. Let's hope the president now turns to Janet Yellen, who I believe would make an excellent Fed chairperson.
It is clear -- three years after the bill's passage -- the agencies are still far from compliance on at least one aspect of the bill. Dodd-Frank mandates that agencies create workplaces with a more reasonable gender balance.
All knowledgeable D.C. types know that the TARP and Fed bailout of Wall Street banks five years ago saved us from a second Great Depression. Like most things known by knowledgeable Washington types, this is not true.
For journalists who are being told what a brilliant man and insightful regulator Larry Summers was behind the scenes, here are a few items from his public record you might want to review.
Jared Bernstein was Vice President Joe Biden's chief economist and was the strongest economic voice within the Obama administration opposing inflicting austerity on the nation in response to the Great Recession.
The next Fed Chair will need to be more than another insider bureaucrat. She will need to be an action hero who can kill zombies (i.e. Milton Friedman clones) and save the planet.
In the interest of fairness, I also wanted to weigh in briefly on ways in which Larry Summers views on financial market oversight, a critical part of the job of Fed chair, have been misrepresented in some accounts.
Accountability or experience, corruption or insight, boys club or equal opportunity, "no reason" or many reasons? In the Looking Glass World of Wall Street and Washington, critics and defenders will not agree.
An even bigger problem though is that by focusing so heavily on Summers, the president has inadvertently narrowed the field down to only two candidates: Larry Summers and Janet Yellen.
The widening circle applauding megamillionaire Larry Summers -- of Harvard University, Washington, D.C. and Wall Street -- agrees on one word to describe the colossal failure -- Brilliant!
A Fed Chair who made it her mission to restore effective supervision would not choose "boring," "dull," or "bureaucratic" people. She would be putting a giant bull's-eye on her back and would ensure that she never have another boring day.
"I wouldn't want Larry Summers to mow my yard." That little gem was uttered Monday by Senator Pat Roberts in what has to be a fight the White House really doesn't want to have right now.
Many people make the error of believing that the banksters are dull, humorless stiffs in gray suits. Many banksters have a finely developed sense of irony and utter contempt for financial reporters' intelligence and independence.