Monday, March 9, 2009

Indispensable Man Agonistes

Geithner, With Few Aides, Faces a Wave of Challenges

In the six weeks since Mr. Geithner took over as Treasury secretary, he and a skeleton crew of unofficial senior advisers have been racing to make decisions that will shape the future of the banking, insurance, housing and automobile industries.

But even as he maintains a frenetic pace — unveiling plans, testifying before Congress and negotiating new bailouts with the likes of CitigroupGeneral Motors and theAmerican International Group — there are signs that events are getting ahead of him

It's literally too much to expect one person - even the Indispensable Man - to deal with all of the problems facing the financial sector. His boss needs to take the lead on this; no one else can command the attention of all the actors involved. 

Parenthetically, I will say (once again) that it is a national disgrace that he is working with a "skeleton crew," due to the slow pace of nominating and vetting his political appointees. This is uncomfortably reminiscent of the "light footprint" in Iraq. 

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