"After the Democratic “shellacking” in the midterm elections, everyone wondered how President Obama would respond. Would he show what he was made of? Would he stand firm for the values he believes in, even in the face of political adversity?
On Monday, we got the answer: he announced a pay freeze for federal workers. This was an announcement that had it all. It was transparently cynical; it was trivial in scale, but misguided in direction; and by making the announcement, Mr. Obama effectively conceded the policy argument to the very people who are seeking — successfully, it seems — to destroy him.
So I guess we are, in fact, seeing what Mr. Obama is made of."
I've got nothing to add, except this one fact, which Krugman rudely fails to forget:
"Meanwhile, there’s a real deficit issue on the table: whether tax cuts for the wealthy will, as Republicans demand, be extended. Just as a reminder, over the next 75 years the cost of making those tax cuts permanent would be roughly equal to the entire expected financial shortfall of Social Security."
Yes, we are choosing here to deny a semblance of a decent life to retired people who have worked all their lives, in order to continue a huge tax giveaway for the rich, originally passed by a terminally corrupt Republican president and congress. Welcome to Obama's World, in which such a thing is seen as a reasonable compromise.