In a speech before a university audience, Vice-President Joe Biden was deeply critical of the direction of recent US policy:
Vice President Joe Biden, in the centerpiece of his revised policy position, told a university audience that business and investment in the United States are being held back by corruption, lapses in the rule of law and impediments to true democracy.
In the area of corruption, Biden was referring to the influence of the financial sector on government policy. “When Hank Paulson talks to his successor at Goldman Sachs 24 times the week before the AIG bailout–when Goldman is worried about the $9 billion that AIG owes them–you know something stinks,” Biden asserted.
On the rule of law, Biden will discuss the Fed’s relentless interventions to prop up creditors of insolvent institutions, the US ownership stake in GM that pushed bondholders to the back of the line in favor of unions, and the ad hoc delays in implementing ObamaCare via waivers the administration has been doling out haphazardly.
“Where do I start?” Biden asks plaintively, about the impediments to true democracy. “What kind of democracy do we have when the Fed, a group of unelected officials with little or no accountability can spread trillions of dollars throughout our economy, sometimes benefiting specific banks with liquidity in the name of stability? Or the delegation by Congress in the writing of legislation to the agencies, a much less transparent process with little accountability and huge potential for special interest mischief? We have to get back to real capitalism and real democracy,” Biden said.
Given the uncertainty in the policy environment, “is it any wonder that businesses are sitting on the sidelines and that investment is so anemic?” Biden concluded.
Actually, that’s not what Biden said. Here’s the real news story  from the WSJ:
Vice President Joe Biden, in the centerpiece of his European swing, will tell a university audience here that business and investment in Russia are being held back by corruption, lapses in the rule of law and impediments to true democracy, senior U.S. administration officials say.
Maybe he ought to spend more time at home and pay more attention.