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Lots of critics, like David Brooks, reflexively attribute Obama’s rapid slide to a push for more government.  Not even close.  In fact, that’s lazy thinking.

The rapidity of the slide is due to the Wall Street bailout.  Instead of punishment of the perps, we are getting bonuses.  Instead of reform to prevent gambling, we get more of the same (even worse, it is being done with an explicit government backstop).  Instead of relief for the middle class we get profiteering as the financial industry extracts everything they can from a tapped populace.

Nothing could have eroded trust faster than this.  All agenda items after this fiasco are/were forfeit.