In an op-ed in today’s Washington Post — “Mr. President, Time to Rein in the Chaos” — former Intel guru (and Obama supporter) Andrew S. Grove finds himself “wringing my hands, not over the goals President Obama has set [to deal with the ‘economic meltdown’] but over the ineffectual ways the administration has pursued them”:
We have gone through months of chaos experimenting with ways to introduce stability in our financial system. The goals were to allow the financial institutions to do their jobs and to develop confidence in them. I believe by now, the people are eager for the administration to rein in chaos. But this is not happening.
Until the administration does this, we should not embark on attempting to fix another major part of the economy. Our health-care system may well be ripe for a major overhaul, as are our energy and environmental policies. Widespread recognition that all of these reforms are overdue contributed to Barack Obama’s victory in November. But if the chaos that resulted from initiating such an overhaul were piled on top of the unresolved status of the financial system, society and government would become exhausted. Instead, the administration must adopt a discipline; not initiating a second wave of chaos before we have a chance to rein in the first.
Grove’s critique is very similar to Warren Buffett’s. If this is what leading Democratic business sages are now saying publicly, imagine what they and others are saying privately. Will President Obama pay attention and dramatically revise his course (rather than just pay lip service to the criticisms)? Not if he’s the hard-core leftist ideologue that many of us have long perceived through the fog of his sweet-sounding rhetoric.