Posted by | December 14, 2010 14:44 | Filed under: Top Stories

by Stuart Shapiro

I’m not one to say that the Obama Administration is in the back pocket of the banking industry.  Nor am I one to deny former OMB Director, Peter Orszag, his right to pursue the career of his choice.  But when I heard that Orszag was going to take a high-paying job at Citibank, my reaction was the same as that of James Fallows.

The idea that someone would help plan, advocate, and carry out an economic policy that played such a crucial role in the survival of a financial institution — and then, less than two years after his Administration took office, would take a job that (a) exemplifies the growing disparities the Administration says it’s trying to correct and (b) unavoidably will call on knowledge and contacts Orszag developed while in recent public service — this says something bad about what is taken for granted in American public life.

As Fallows goes on to note, Orszag had many other lucrative opportunities.  The idea that he had to take this one shows shockingly bad judgment.  And it should also weigh against him if he is interested in any future jobs in Washington.

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Copyright 2010 Liberaland
By: Stuart Shapiro

Stuart is a professor and the Director of the Public Policy
program at the Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers
University. He teaches economics and cost-benefit analysis and studies
regulation in the United States at both the federal and state levels.
Prior to coming to Rutgers, Stuart worked for five years at the Office
of Management and Budget in Washington under Presidents Clinton and
George W. Bush.