AMY GOODMAN: Naomi Klein, right now—well, you just flew into Park City, Utah just before President Obama’s State of the Union address. Your reaction to it?
NAOMI KLEIN: Well, I mean, we knew the spending freeze was going to come, but to me, it’s really striking. I think what this moment represents is the decision, which we all feared would come, to pass the bill on from saving Wall Street, from saving the elites of this country from their own mess, a bill worth trillions of dollars, to regular people in need in this country. I mean, that’s what a spending freeze really means.
And we have to look at it in the context of the debt crisis that is occurring at the state level. There’s deficit—huge deficits being run up. California is the most dramatic example, but you’re already seeing how students are facing things like 30 percent tuition increases. Women’s shelters are being closed. So, you know, when the President says freeze spending, that’s saying to the states, “We’re not going to help you. We’re not going to bail you out.”
So this is really—this, to me, all comes back to the top-down bailout that should never have taken place in the first place, the decision that was made to throw the taxpayer dollars at the banks, at the elites, no strings attached, not to help the people losing their jobs, losing their homes. And now the bill is being passed on, because the debt crisis, the private-sector debt crisis, which started this, the banks racking up these huge debts, was never solved. It was just moved. It was just moved to the public coffers.
And now Obama is—this is a Hoover move. This is a Herbert Hoover move. And I think we have to say very clearly, he is not FDR. And, you know, in the spirit of Howard Zinn, who passed yesterday, I keep thinking, you know, what would he say about the State of the Union? And I think he would tell us to refuse to pay this bill, that we need a debtors’ revolt.
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Naomi Klein on SOTU (Demcracy Now!) (with audio/video)
Naomi Klein, via Democracy Now! with audio/video (13:07):