Showing posts with label Barack Obama. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Barack Obama. Show all posts

Thursday, April 18, 2019

AOC Should Write A Book

AOC should write a book that would be a page-turner (as in, a fast-paced account) account of when she decided to run to winning her primary. Well, the actual election was a foregone conclusion after she won the primary, so that part need not be covered.

It would be exciting. It would also be a handbook for people who might want to replicate that success elsewhere in the country which, I believe, would much please AOC.

The book would sell well and bring about financial freedom for AOC. That would be a good thing. That would free her to be more risk-taking. She is already plenty of a risk-taker. The book would free her from her congressional salary.

She is neck and neck to Donald Trump in terms of media attention, which is mind-blowing. But that would fool you into thinking people already know. Not the case. People don't know all the details. They do want to know.

I can see her playing a key role for Bernie in the fall of 2020 to get the young vote out. It is best there is a book out there before that so she maintains control of her narrative.

Her book might have a one-word title: Running.

Monday, August 28, 2017

The World Needs To Move Towards A World Government

The debate if the 21st century will continue to be an American century, or if it will become an Asian century is moot. This is not even going to be an Internet century. The Blockchain will prove bigger than the Internet, and bigger still technological trends are right around the corner. The nation state itself is about to be shown its place. It is high time the world moved towards creating a world government. One person one vote has to be the basic premise.

Third Culture Kid (TCK) Barack Obama is best positioned to be George Washington to the world. He was born to a Kenyan in Hawaii, he grew up in Indonesia as a kid, he was America's first black president, and he did a decent job of steering America after a Great Depression like economic event. His Obamacare was so well placed, the opposition party, despite having all three branches of government at its disposal, has not been able to dislodge it, despite having opposed it non stop right from its enactment.

India leads on the biometric ID front. And Narendra Modi has acquired a Deng Xiaoping, Lee Kuan Yew like stature. Add to that India's population size and history of democracy, and that puts Modi in a strong place to help architect the world government.

The world government would be a new layer of government at the very top, just like the local level, the state level, the national level. It is the roof all national governments need.

One per cent of GDP should be the tax each national government ought to pay for membership. By the time the world government is put in place, the UN and all similar world bodies ought to be subsumed by the new world government. Take that World Bank, IMF, the International Criminal Court. Three branches make sense. You would not need a separate WTO, or G7, or G20.

New York City would be the legitimate capital, it still is the most diverse city on the planet.

You could have a bicameral legislature. In the lower house, each nation would have a voting weight in direct proportion to its population. In the upper house the voting weight would be in proportion to the size of the economy. At first the two houses would elect the President of the World. But soon enough perhaps the POW could be elected directly by people all over the world voting on their smartphones.

A world with a world government will have to become a borderless world. Maybe not as step one, but soon enough. How about the magic bullet with which to double the global GDP!

Thursday, February 02, 2017

Trump Can't Afford A Trade War

A trade war is a sure recipe to a Great Depression. America had a hard enough time fixing the Great Recession. America will have no options to fix a Great Depression, because the Fed is already tapped out. It has no maneuver room. A Great Depression will mean America will not only become Greece, it will stay Greece, with no way to dig out of the hole.

Which means, if Trump were to lead America into a Great Depression, it will prove the guy is insane. You can then be thankful it is only a Great Depression, and not a nuclear war.

Or maybe all parties concerned will see that a trade war is an empty threat.

The idea of a trade war is as stupid as both Russia and America threatening to "modernize" their nuclear arsenal a few weeks ago. Both Russia and America already have enough nuclear weapons to blow up the planet several times over. What do you mean "modernize!"

The post World War II order is over. Voters in Britain and America have spoken loud and clear. Neither country can afford the leadership roles they have had. It is dollars and cents. And a new world order is not China taking America's place. A new world order is the one person one vote principle taken to its global conclusion. You are looking at a world government.

Britain And America Are Trying To Readjust

The post World War II world order is over. But a new world order has not taken shape yet. The Brexit vote and the Trump victory are Britain and America admitting the leadership role they have had for 70 years is now too expensive. They simply can't afford it anymore.

And that is not a vacuum for China to fill. It is not for any one country to fill. China can't afford it either.

A new world order will be the one person one vote principle taken to its global conclusion. A world government is in the offing.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Warren Harris 2020

There has to be a merciless postmortem of the sorry state the Democrats are in right now. It has become a municipal party of big city mayors. The Republicans have the White House, the Senate, the House and most state governments.

Barack Obama did not fight back birtherism hard enough. And it had real consequences like him not fulfilling his constitutional obligation to fill a Supreme Court slot. That is a signal to his supporters. I can't deliver on that one even though the constitution says I can.

Hillary Clinton’s disappearances and disengagements in August and October poured water on a winning convention and three won debates.

Bernie Sanders has made basic gutsy moves but his ideology feels like a throwback to another era. Health care for all through dramatic reductions in health expenses by better nutrition and exercise and saving a trillion dollars per year by taking obesity in America to 1980 levels is a more holistic approach. Education costs are supposed to go down like computer prices have gone down. The best way to empower women and minority groups is by opening access to credit for them so more of them can get into entrepreneurship.

Elizabeth Warren is a superior presence to Sanders and was the original choice of the crowd that swarmed to Sanders. Besides Sanders lost before Hillary did. He had a shot. Now make way.

And I really do like the idea of a woman president.

One thing I have noted about Warren is she has out loud worried that the tech giants Google, Facebook, Amazon, Apple have become monopolies that might get in the way of the next wave of innovation. She is coming to the present from the future.

She has to take that approach to all policy issues including her signature issue of banking. She has to talk about the Age Of Abundance and she has to talk about Universal Basic Income. She has to talk about steam physics.

And she has to have the guts to put another woman on the ticket. My top choice would be Kamala Harris. She is Indian African American. India is the new Britain. That counts for something. Also you maybe don't want California to secede.

Warren has to talk the Blockchain when she talks banking. Warren has to talk the fourth industrial revolution. Warren has to talk nanotechnology, biotechnology, clean energy, robotics and artificial intelligence.

She has to talk about both America and the planet. Because America is on a planet.

She has to talk about banks like someone who knows the Internet is coming might talk about the paper newspapers of 1990, for that is precisely what the Blockchain is.

And if Warren is to run, as she should, she has about one year to decide. Just like Barack Obama in 2006 Warren has to crisscross the country through 2018 all year from the beginning of the year and take the House and the Senate. Then, early in 2019, in Boston harbor, she has to announce she is running, or the West Coast might secede.

She has to marry 2008 grassroots organizing to the 2020 technologies. 10 times more has become possible.

Gender is specific to the flesh body. It is not a feature of the soul. All human beings have been created equal and special by the Creator. Mother Mary desires gender equality on earth, even as she wears a non gendered perfect spirit body in heaven.

Warren Harris 2020 is unstoppable.

Friday, November 04, 2016

The Tarmac Incident

There is something about Bill Clinton and tarmacs. The tarmac appears to be one of Bill Clinton's political blind spots. In 1992 he decided to have a haircut on a tarmac.

This year he kept Barack Obama waiting. And it perhaps is a non event between the two of them. I am sure they are the best of friends. And Obama has made comedy hay out of it too.

But I can't think of a better way to depress millennial support for Hillary Clinton. It was a public incident involving two of the most visible men.

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Obama: Feminist

Barack Obama Is America's Feminist-in-Chief

He’s offering a valuable new template for masculinity, not just in politics but in American culture more broadly.

Steve Jobs, Hillary Clinton And Doing Homework

Why ambitious men are celebrated and ambitious women are criticized

Rejecting her policy stances is one thing. Aversion based on a gut feeling, he suggests, might be sexism.

“The predictable swings of public opinion reveal Americans’ continued prejudice against women caught in the act of asking for power.”

Not comparing Hillary Clinton to Steve Jobs. But you have to note. Steve Jobs was praised to no end for his product launch presentations. Every word was endlessly rehearsed in advance.

But when Hillary Clinton does her homework, oh, she is not a natural, she is "rehearsed."

It is a sexist trap. If you don't prepare you are not qualified. If you prepare you are "wooden." Damned if you do damned if you don't.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Russia And NATO

In the early 2000s Russia actually expressed interest in joining NATO. Russia apparently was rebuffed. That is mind boggling from the peace perspective.

It can be imagined the military industrial complex in America did not like the idea. When you don't have an enemy it is hard to justify a large defense budget.

On the other hand Russia has not exactly gone down the path of democracy. And it does not seem to have discovered some alternate path to putting its economy on a sound path to rapid progress.

Russia is Second World.

Be that as it may it is for Russia and America as the two leading nuclear powers on the planet to take the lead to creating a world free of nuclear weapons. Why keep weapons that everyone knows can never be used? Why leave the options open for false alarms that might end human civilization?

And while the two powers figure out their mutual dynamic, Syria suffers. The innocents in Syria suffer. It is a sad situation.

America could have done a much better job of winning the Cold War. It did not do enough to help Russia in the aftermath. It did not do a good enough job of face saving of a defeated rival.

And it is not too late for Russia to choose the path of democracy as the only available way to rapid economic progress and true greatness.

Letting go of Assad would be a good small step in that direction. Assad is irredeemable. Assad is deplorable. This guy has attacked his own people like Hitler attacked people in other countries.

Friday, October 28, 2016

GOP Civil War Round The Corner?

Now the party of Ronald Reagan is being led by a man with no discernible ideological leanings, save for an affinity with some of history’s ugliest. 

“The likelihood of the Republican Party surviving this, of there being another Republican president in the future, is small,” said one movement conservative who served in the Bush White House. “I don’t think the party survives.”

Far from the halls of the Hoover Institution and big Washington policy shops is a force they cannot control: the Trump campaign, a small collection of social-media gurus, Breitbart alumni, and Trump family members who have managed to capture the majority of Republican voters in the U.S., and who may use their new power to launch a media network, or take over as the new axis of the GOP, or both. And as the old establishment looks on in horror, the civil war in its ranks has already begun.

“I’ve never seen so many really smart people at a loss for what to do,” says the head of one prominent conservative think tank. “They’re pulling their hair out, to the extent they have any hair left.” 

We’ve known the cause of death while the patient was still alive on the table.”

There is pretty universal agreement in conservative circles that the immediate cause of death was blunt force trauma with a loud, orange object.

there is wide disagreement as to whether this was a sudden, unpredictable trauma—a piano falling on you as you walk down the street—or the result of deep-seated, sclerotic disease. 

“The ugliness of those forces is real. The number of people who supported Trump is alarming. 

Some among them just think it’s time to start over. “If you can’t resurrect the Republican brand with less than half a billion dollars and spending four to eight years to get it done,” Glover, who is on the board of Roy’s new think tank, said, it might be time to think about starting something new. 

The party she envisions is one with “a Jeb Bush platform but with a 21st-century bolt on acknowledging climate change, gay marriage and campaign finance reform that’s First Amendment-compliant.”

Trump could only have happened to a party that was already paralyzed by an identity crisis—one that still has to be dealt with in addition to the secondary identity crisis wrought by Trump.

three disparate factions that find themselves squabbling under the Republican tent—the Trump fans, the stand-pat establishment, and the conservative Jesuits—

What the orange dragon chooses to do after the drubbing Republicans are sure he’s going to get might be the difference between the final nail in the GOP coffin, and a revival. And again, few really believe in the latter, not even the stalwarts. “I have a feeling no one’s going to learn a lot from this campaign because of the unique nature of Trump,” says the think tank head. “I’m one of the people who is feeling a lot of angst.” If he starts a media company, says Ayres, “It will be far harder to heal the wounds that he opened up, and far harder to put Humpty Dumpty back together again.”

“It’s in Trump’s nature to continue to want to be relevant, to have people come to Trump Tower to lick his boots for years to come,”

As for the people who hope Trump will simply melt away on November 9 and remove the threat of collapse from the Republican Party? “I appreciate but do not share their optimism,” says Soltis Anderson. “I feel like we are in for a pretty long civil war.”

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Warren: Champion Senator

Elizabeth Warren is the US president we need, but can't have – this time 

She’s a champion of workers’ rights, campaigning for those employed in the “gig” economy to get basic employment protections and social security. She has fought for a genuine living wage, arguing that the minimum wage would have risen to$22 an hour if it had increased at the same rate as productivity. She has demanded action to crack down on corporate tax avoidance, passionately making the case that “there is nobody in this country whogot rich on his own. Nobody.”

She has courageously embraced the Black Lives Matter movement, demanding reform of the police to stop the unjust killing of black Americans. 

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Michelle Obama For President 2024

I just read somewhere earlier that Republicans are scared Michelle Obama might run for the Senate and I was like, dang, how did they beat me to such a good idea!

That would be an excellent outcome. Hillary Clinton has not had a better surrogate this year. Michelle Obama is such a natural. Michelle took the gender issue by the horns. I think that partly explains Hillary's great confidence in the third debate.

And then I don't see why Michelle Obama can then not run for president in 2024.

People with last name Obama have been known to do that. Enter the Senate, then enter the White House.

I am on record from years ago right at this blog suggesting let's just declare Michelle queen and be done with this First Lady business. And since Bill Clinton can't be First Lady I think my idea has new relevance. It's still not too late. Where is an executive order when you need one?

After 44 men in there, what's two women? Besides black women find themselves at the intersection of both race and gender. It is a unique sociopolitical position to be in.

Send guys named Bill and Barack off to the golf courses. Let the women run the show.  

Friday, October 21, 2016

Why Hillary Is Winning And Winning Big

The gender pressure has been building. Every time America has not elected a woman president that has added to the pressure. After 44 men that is a lot of pressure. That is why this is going to be a gigantic volcanic eruption. Women are being strategic about coming out only in the final few weeks.

She is a cat with two lives. She gave one life to making Bill Clinton president, with another life she is making herself president. What every top caliber politician has done one time she has done two times. That is a lot of preparation. Donald Trump is a feather weight boxer who is seeing both Muhammad Ali and Mike Tyson in the ring, and it is not just because he is seeing stars. There really are two boxers in the ring, Hillary times two. And I am not talking Bill Clinton. More on that later.

She has the brains. Someone of middle class background who went to top schools on merit and was top student there.

Thomas Edison said genius is 99% perspiration. Discipline and hard work are perhaps Hillary Clinton's defining qualities and that aspiring girls and women would most benefit from emulating. She puts in the hours. No short cuts there. She has all the qualities of a good student.

She has sound political instincts. I believe you could compare her in that department with any contemporary politician anywhere, or any in history. She is as good as they come. And I am not talking policy wonkiness. That is different. Paul Krugman is quite a policy wonk but I would not send him into the boxing ring.

She is a policy wonk, and not every successful politician is. She could have happily worked at some think tank her entire working life.

It does not hurt to be married to Bill Clinton, a world class political talent in his own right.

Getting beat by Barack Obama in 2008 makes her a cat with three lives.

2016. After 5,000 years of men running the show it had to happen in 2016. Being in the right place at the right time, Hillary got lucky.

And God gave her the most unqualified candidate in history to run against. Mother Mary obviously desires gender equality on earth.

Putin's Russia

As our special report this week sets out, Russia confronts grave problems in its economy, politics and society. Its population is ageing and is expected to shrink by 10% by 2050. An attempt to use the windfall from the commodity boom to modernise the state and its economy fell flat. Instead Mr Putin has presided over a huge increase in government: between 2005 and 2015, the share of Russian GDP that comes from public spending and state-controlled firms rose from 35% to 70%. Having grown by 7% a year at the start of Mr Putin’s reign, the economy is now shrinking. Sanctions are partly to blame, but corruption and a fall in the price of oil matter more. The Kremlin decides who gets rich and stays that way. Vladimir Yevtushenkov, a Russian tycoon, was detained for three months in 2014. When he emerged, he had surrendered his oil company.

Improve Obamacare

Barack Obama Offers Blistering Takedown Of GOP Obstructionism In Pitch For Health Care Law 

First is for the 19 states that have refused to take up Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion to do so, in the process covering millions more poor adults. Second is to beef up the subsidies provided to people who get their coverage from the law’s health insurance exchanges. And third is to set up a government-run public option program ― which Obama called a “public plan fallback” ― in geographic areas with the highest prices and least competition.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Russia, America And Global Stability

The ideological tussle lasted almost seven full decades. The capitalism communism tussle defined the 20th century. It is said only the Bible has been circulated more than Lenin's works. The decades after World War II were stark, primarily due to the nuclear angle.

The dog eat dog capitalism that Lenin theorized against was much tempered by FDR who responded primarily to the Great Depression. Stalinism was basically authoritarianism. The basic human rights, the basic freedoms, freedom of religion are the bedrock. The economic part of it did not work either. Ends up free enterprise is fundamental. Property rights are basic.

But Russia has always loomed large in Europe even during the era of Tsars. By geographic size it is still the biggest country in the world. The Russians would like to believe they are a major power in the world. They would like their geopolitical pull to be felt. Between them America and Russia continue to have most of the nuclear weapons in the world. And Russia has a defense industry that looks for buyers all over the world. Saber rattling is good for business.

The ideological tussle is not final, it never is. American democracy is not a finished product but a work in progress. And the economic paradigms it has been functioning in will soon prove inadequate. The world is about to enter an unprecedented era of major productivity gains largely driven by technology. The capitalism communism tussle was liquid water physics. The era of steam physics is right round the corner. New political and economic paradigms will be needed. And such theoretical work should never be tied to nationalism of any culture or country. Was Einstein's theory of relativity Jewish? Nope.

Is Russia a democracy? Is Russia a market economy? Is Putin a new Tsar? Russia is not a democracy like the ones in Western Europe, obviously. And Russia does not seem to have a hard nosed focus on economic growth like China. At some level Russia would like a status of equals relationship with the United States that it thought it had during the Cold War, based primarily on the fact of its large nuclear arsenal and a still impressive military.

Saudi Arabia is no democracy by any stretch of imagination but America seems to do business with it just fine.

There is a fissure. Russia, Pakistan, China and North Korea form one ideological belt, America, Europe, India and Japan form another belt. Democracies and non democracies have a tendency to needle each other. But it is not clear cut. Russia and India have a friendship that is unique.  That is a good thing. That perhaps is a safety valve lest things go a little out of hand between Russia and the West.

China is not a Saddam dictatorship. It can be argued China has campaign finance reform that American progressives wish they had.

America has campaign finance reform to do. Race relations in America are in a sorry state. So it is not like America has a perfect political system. The gender churn of the 2016 race is a global spectacle.

Jobs are being lost in all countries to automation but there are demagogues in many countries who are busy channeling the resultant anger in the direction of other countries.

The technological innovation is about to speed up so much it will not only ask for new political and economic theory it will also upend the geopolitical map of the world. Understood well it can be for the collective good of all humanity. Russia and America cooperating with the end goal of a nuclear weapon free world is what is best for the general welfare of the ordinary citizens in both those countries.  

Nuclear technology is decades old. Showing off nuclear is like someone bragging about an early mobile phone in this era of smartphones. Nuclear is not the next big thing. It is old technology. The next is nano and bio.

Syria and Yemen make both America and Russia look bad, as if it is okay for a large number of innocent people to die while the big powers of the world play their geopolitical chess games.

Syria is top of the list. The world is failing Syria. Who violated the ceasefire? America? And if the American military action was a mistake, were the Syrians and Russians invited for detailed briefings and verifications?

The Arab world is in turmoil. It is a world primarily struggling with itself. It is a culture asking for validation. There is an aspiration for freedom and democracy where you can kick the can down the road but not forever.

I read Tolstoy's War And Peace cover to cover during what would be the freshman year in the American high school system, Class 9. That is all I did an entire vacation. The mind was blown, to say the least. Compared to it novels of western literature started looking like little short stories. Then I read Dostoyevsky's Crime And Punishment and the mind was blown all over again. The mind was blown a third time with Gabriel Garcia Marquez' One Hundred Years Of Solitude.

The GDP is not the only measure of greatness. The rat race of chasing the dollar is not the only meaningful life. In fact if the rat race is your only life it is not much of a life in the first place. Life has to have a higher meaning.

And if it is about wealth if humanity can conquer global warming it can take itself to an Age Of Abundance, an era that will make the America of today look like a Third World country. And it will be global. All world will have become one country long before 2050 anyways.

Both Russia and America should approach the present from that future. There is much common ground possible. There is much for the two powers to do together.

Russia is the country that gave political asylum to Snowden, the whistleblower who has ignited debate on privacy in the era of mass surveillance. Ends up the American state is as knee deep as the Chinese state when it comes to surveillance.

This debate concludes with a netizen bill of rights. The debate has not even started yet.

The Russian political system is itself an unsettled debate. The right system will give Russia good economic growth.

Putin has a modest background. Yeltsin basically handed over Russia to Putin impressed by his ability to execute, to get things done. In the years after the collapse of the Soviet Union Russia was in free fall. There were bread lines, for example. Putin stabilized the country. But in the process became a new Tsar. One hopes for the sake of Russia that is not the final reality.

Democracy is good.

Sunday, October 09, 2016

The Obama Factor

GOP Eaten by Barack Obama Hate Monster They Created 

For eight years straight, the starting point of conversation coming from so many in the GOP is not about ideas or policy, it’s about what they hate and who they want to stop. What were the choices after Trump? Hater Cruz or empty-suit Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) who spoke more on Obama than the current nominee Hillary Clinton? Once being a “real conservative” meant running campaigns on “stopping Obama” the voters landed on Trump.

The GOP has been transformed from a party of policy ideas to a party galvanized around “who we want to bring down.” It’s unrecognizable as compared to the presidencies of George H.W. Bush or Ronald Reagan. Despite scandals, paranoia and lists of enemies, even Richard Nixon was generally policy driven. That Republican Party is gone. Republican voters nominated a candidate whose most dominant public act was lying about the first Black President of the United States’ birthplace in a relentless effort to undermine Obama’s authority and legitimacy in the name of ego. Trump couldn’t get his mind around the fact that a Black man in America has ascended higher than himself. Trump’s effort has 300 years of legacy behind it and it was given oxygen by many in the GOP universe.

Friday, October 07, 2016

Russia Is Second World

Russia is Second World, India is Third World, soon to be the third largest economy is Third World, because it is about per capita income.

Russia lost the Cold War. It is an economy the size of Italy.

Syria is where Russia has decided to take its last stand before the world comes to realize Russia really, truly did lose the Cold War.

China was the biggest beneficiary of the end of the Cold War. It allowed China to ditch an economics that was obviously not working.

Putin is happy playing second fiddle to China. China does not think Russia is a superior military power. The two economies don't even compare. And it has been only a generation.

The irony is, in seeking power parity with America Russia is going down a path that takes it further and further away from true greatness. True greatness comes from growing the Russian economy.

Democracy and the market economy are it. Sooner or later Russia will have to come around to it for its own good.

It can also be said America did not manage the end of the Cold War as well as it could have. But then how much room to play was there?

The Russian people and leadership have to decide on their own to do right by Russia's future.

The tragedy is Syria. Innocents are getting killed in large numbers. That will be a drag on Russian stature in the long term.

Thursday, October 06, 2016

Unfinished Business

How has a country that has benefited—perhaps more than any other—from immigration, trade and technological innovation suddenly developed a strain of anti-immigrant, anti-innovation protectionism? Why have some on the far left and even more on the far right embraced a crude populism that promises a return to a past that is not possible to restore—and that, for most Americans, never existed at all? 

Over the past 25 years, the proportion of people living in extreme poverty has fallen from nearly 40% to under 10%. Last year, American households enjoyed the largest income gains on record and the poverty rate fell faster than at any point since the 1960s. Wages have risen faster in real terms during this business cycle than in any since the 1970s. These gains would have been impossible without the globalisation and technological transformation that drives some of the anxiety behind our current political debate.

 A world in which 1% of humanity controls as much wealth as the other 99% will never be stable. Gaps between rich and poor are not new but just as the child in a slum can see the skyscraper nearby, technology allows anyone with a smartphone to see how the most privileged live. 

Over the past decade, America has enjoyed the fastest productivity growth in the G7, but it has slowed across nearly all advanced economies

American firms that export pay their workers up to 18% more on average than companies that do not

Research shows that growth is more fragile and recessions more frequent in countries with greater inequality. Concentrated wealth at the top means less of the broad-based consumer spending that drives market economies.

Under my administration, we will have boosted incomes for families in the bottom fifth of the income distribution by 18% by 2017

a free market only thrives when there are rules to guard against systemic failure and ensure fair competition.

fiscal policy must play a bigger role in combating future downturns; monetary policy should not bear the full burden of stabilising our economy. Unfortunately, good economics can be overridden by bad politics.

America’s political system can be frustrating. Believe me, I know. But it has been the source of more than two centuries of economic and social progress. The progress of the past eight years should also give the world some measure of hope. Despite all manner of division and discord, a second Great Depression was prevented. The financial system was stabilised without costing taxpayers a dime and the auto industry rescued. I enacted a larger and more front-loaded fiscal stimulus than even President Roosevelt’s New Deal and oversaw the most comprehensive rewriting of the rules of the financial system since the 1930s, as well as reforming health care and introducing new rules cutting emissions from vehicles and power plants.

20m more Americans with health insurance, while health-care costs grow at the slowest rate in 50 years