Last month I implied that one of the signs of DOOM in November would be an increased number of convoluted theories about how to ensure Democratic dominance. Ben Domenech over at The New Ledger has links to the latest one, which is apparently resting on the core assumption that two years of Democratic disillusionment with an administration that is excellent at betrayal, yet incompetent at actual policy- and agenda-setting can be instantly set aside by the appointment of Elizabeth Warren to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
I know what you’re asking: you’re asking What’s a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau? and Who is Elizabeth Warren? The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is yet another government agency – this one courtesy of Frank-Dodd – designed and dedicated to the proposition that citizens are too stupid to handle their own credit affairs, bankers are too greedy to let them, and that both negative qualities are magically removed from the human psyche when you make one a regulator*. More seriously, it’s going to be ostensibly a watchdog agency over the financial industry, which is another way of saying that it’s going to be one of those ‘solutions’ that will persist in making our lives ever-so-slightly more miserable long after the problem that addresses has gone away. Just one more reason why elections have consequences, folks.
And who is Elizabeth Warren? :shrug: Some Ivy League academic who writes advice books on family fiscal planning even though she’s never had a real job. Also the person who came up with the CFPB in the first place; also the chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel, which is the group that Congress put up to futilely watch over the wasting of your tax money. Fairly typical Beltway drone, in other words, albeit one that’s growing increasingly hated by the business community**. So you may be forgiven for scratching your head on this one: finance regulation arcana is of critical importance to the country (just like, say, thirty or forty other kinds of policy arcana), and she’s a player in that particular tight bubble – but outside of it she’s not exactly well-known.
Which leads to the third question: So why will she revitalize the Democratic base and bring about the progressive millenium if she’s given the head job at a new sub-agency of the Fed? Sorry, I can’t answer that one: it’s kind of, you know, theological.
*I swear, we should put the entire Congress on a strict regimen of anti-anxiety medication, particularly the Democrats.
**Which I hope that they will continue to remember when it’s time to write out another campaign contribution check.
Crossposted to Moe Lane.