Wednesday, November 05, 2008


The joke was that whoever won last night would wake up this morning and demand a recount. Here's why it's an unfunny joke. President-elect Obama has basically 60 days to set in motion a radical austerity program. If he doesn't, his presidency, in all likelihood, will end in failure.

To make matters worse, as Iraq has improved, Afghanistan has deteriorated. And to make matters even worse, as Kedrosky points out, the fate of the global financial system hangs on the solvency of Italy, Spain, Brazil and the Russian Federation.

We are on the edge of catastrophe. One hopes that President-elect Obama knows this in his bones and engages the very best minds and most seasoned policy-makers -- Mike Hayden, Robert Gates, Bill Gross, Warren Buffett, Paul Volker, John Doerr, Jeremy Grantham, Robert Rubin, David Swenson, Mohamed El-Erian -- to help him parse the policy responses required.

All that said, Obama's victory is something I thought I would never see in my lifetime. I voted for Senator McCain. But Obama's victory last night was a great thing. A truly great thing.