1. So Dr. Pat Deneen on FACEBOOK reminded us that corporate profits are up 161% under Obama. That’s faster than any comparable period since 1900. Pat’s comment: “Some socialist!”

2. Not only that, of course, but the STOCK MARKET is way up under our president. I’m too lazy to look up the exact stats. But I read this morning in the local paper that investors thinking retirement in a couple of decades need to hustle their funds out of bonds and into stocks. The confidence has returned that stocks will whip inflation big-time over the long term, as, of course, they used to do. I have to admit I don’t have that long-term confidence. But what do I know? (Why do people like me need to have inevitably ill-informed opinions on stuff like that? I hate the era of the 401k.)

3. THE WALL STREET JOURNAL had a hugely uncompelling article a week ago justifying the mega-explosion in CEO compensation. We have to properly incentivize those guys to innovatve and disrupt and whatever. There was a sensible letter in the WSJ yesterday explaining that there’s almost no way to know for sure what the CEO contributes to the performance of the corporation etc. Big-time athletes and Adele and Taylor Swift do, in a way, deserve their big bucks: We can see what they did to generate them. In any case, shouldn’t CEOs be motivated more by power and control and enduring legacy than a fabulous amount of money and other perks that they don’t even have time to use well?

4. So, if America is too oligarchic, Obama is one of many causes. He IS the president of Belmont, although Romney actually lived in Belmont. One lesson from the election: Romney’s oligarchs got a beating from Obama’s.

5. The point of all this: How do Republicans campaign against libertarian oligarchic complacency when their major paper, the WSJ, actually shares it? What do Republicans do when it turns out that Obama’s “socialism” is a kind of government that the rich and sophisticated and especially the really rich and sophisticated can believe in (because, for one reason, it has delivered the goods).

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Articles by Peter Lawler

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