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July 14, 2011 03:44 PM UTC

Thursday Open Thread

  • 98 Comments
  • by: Colorado Pols

“No persons are more frequently wrong than those who will not admit they are wrong.”

–Francois de la Rochefoucauld

Comments

98 thoughts on “Thursday Open Thread

  1. Typing I. Also:  The quick red fox jumped over the old grey wolf.

    Okay, I am beginning to panic.  I can sense that there is growing unease in the country and if we as a country reach the proverbial “tipping point”…there will be economic consequences independent of Congress and the President….and both could be powerless to stop a real panic.

    So for my patriotic part, I am  going to resist the urge to turn in our US bonds and buy gold.  I will revise our plans for surviving the winter…our self-sufficient plan to grow our own food has yielded two heads of lettuce….and a “up yours” from rabbits, volves and weather……so that is out.  Beans, beans, beans and coffee made from bark left over from totally useless organic mulch will have to do….

    Meantime, for a real laugh a minute, catch pop (poor old peter.boyles)  to his country:  “Burn, baby, burn”

    And no, even if it is by candlelight, wearing gloves, I will never give up blogging…never.

  2. After failing once again to present his own detailed plan, Obama yesterday chose to pick up his blocks and walk away in a huff. Once again, he threatened to write NSF checks to Vets, Seniors and others within the massive and complex federal safety net system versus foregoing payments to bloated government worker pension schemes, banning travel, furloughing workers, or taking any one of a multitude of other expense reduction items he could have begun months ago to lower the cost of doing government business. Hint: mandate double bunking for same sex co-workers when traveling. Heck your security detail is probably already doing that today.

    http://www.latimes.com/news/na


    The president abruptly leaves a meeting, reportedly warning that Americans won’t be happy if both sides keep posturing and benefit checks and other bills aren’t paid.

    Where are the details on your ever moving plans Mr. President? These weak attempts to move the goal posts during negotiations are failing the American people.

    I think you have forced the parties to cede to a more temporary plan that will require you to manage and lead. I’m sorry that it appears you won’t get a ‘free pass’ through the 2012 election, but in other financial news congratulations and big ups on hauling in $86 million for 2012 Obama-Biden.

      1. Im really glad to see that that Democrat media machine has the PR campaign in full swing … the sky is falling, the sky is falling ….

        He’s the deal knucklehead, Obama can order Treasury Secretary Timothy “Tax Cheat” Geithner to issue another $250 billion in U.S. debt, enough to cover the government’s mandated expenses through the end of the fiscal year or issue $75 billion to get him through the next months spending obligations.

        You know this, I know this, we all know it. It’s not like the IRS is going to jump up and slap Obama or the nation with massive pre-payment penalties or a cop jumps out from behind a tree with a speeding ticket.

        What I find most funny is the now co-opted Moody’s – running scared for their life – they’ve become a tool and pawn of the Obama-Geithner machine.

        To wit, yesterday Moody’s indicated they’d downgrade the US if it DIDN’T up it’s debts. Yep that’s right borrowing costs would rise and Obama would be headed for junk status if he didn’t get his debt capacity raised.

        I bet every American citizen and millions of company CFOs are wondering just how they can keep their Experian credit score or Moodys rating by increasing their credit lines.

        I know it defies rational thought, but in America you can now be assured that only when you take on more credit, will Moody’s tell the world that but for the increased credit lines, they’d be lowing your credit worthiness rating.

        1. stare at the crazy man while he soils himself.

          Uh, yeah douche . . . Democrat media machine . . . PR campaign in full swing . . . the sky is falling, the sky is falling . . . He’s the deal . . . order . . . “Tax Cheat” Geithner . . .  enough to cover . . .  spending obligations . . . You know this, I know this, we all know it . . . IRS is going to jump up . . . massive pre-payment penalties . . . cop jumps out from behind a tree with a speeding ticket . . . What I find most funny  . . . co-opted Moody’s . . . scared for their life . . . a tool and pawn of the  . . . machine . . .  every American citizen and millions of company CFOs are wondering . . . Experian credit score or Moodys rating . . .  increasing their credit lines . . . I know it defies rational thought . . .  lowing your credit worthiness rating.

          Um, ‘Tad, you forgot to mention anything about your roll of aluminum foil, the CIA mind rays, fluoridation . . .  

          1. Yesterday Moody’s indicated they’d downgrade the US if it DIDN’T up it’s debts. Yep that’s right borrowing costs would rise and Obama would be headed for junk status if he didn’t get his debt capacity raised.

            I bet every American citizen and millions of company CFOs are wondering just how they can keep their Experian credit score or Moodys rating by increasing their credit lines.

            I know it defies rational thought, but in America you can now be assured that only when you take on more credit, will Moody’s tell the world that but for the increased credit lines, they’d be lowing your credit worthiness rating.

            1. Some day you’ll leave your mommy’s basement.  And, you might even have an opportunity to incur some kind of a financial obligation.  In the event that you do, you should repay that obligation according to the terms you agreed upon.  If you don’t, that’s considered a default and it’s not considered a good thing.

      2. Seriously, do you have to be such a goalpost-mover?

        {Lib is right: it’s fun to take a phrase & turn it into a general-purpose insult; kind of like the opposite of calling something “smurfy”!}

    1. did you read that whole article?

      “I suggested we were so far apart I didn’t see in the time before us how we get to where he wants us to be,” Cantor told reporters after the meeting.

      Let me know if I need to explain the significance of this statement, and how it completely undermines any notion that Obama is pouting.

        1. … when Cantor withdrew from debt talks weeks ago, right?

          The Elbee & Lib brain trust on recent political strategery:

          – When Cantor walks out: awesome for Republicans, terrible for Democrats

          – When Obama walks out: awesome for Republicans, terrible for Democrats

          Or to sum up at a higher level of generality:

          – When event “X” happens: awesome for R, terrible for D

          – When opposite event “not X” happens: awesome for R, terrible for D

          Lib & Elb: Is the sky pretty in your world, where all events are awesome for you, even if the opposite of a prior event you thought awesome for you?

          1. That’s why they never respond to anything facty. In a world where the meaning  of  everything that occurs is determined only by the party affiliation of the actor behind the occurrence,  facty stuff has no relevance.  You argue with them by posting documented facts with links and never get a response addressing those facts other than  another, generally irrelevant item from the master list, most often pasted from a forwarded e-mail.

      1. though probably not.  These are excerpts from an article citing actual results from an actual poll and not Rasmussen but Quinnipac:

        Fifty-six percent of voters say in the new Quinnipiac University poll that they disapprove of how the president is handling the economy, while 38 percent approve.  

        Even so, 45 percent trust the president more than Republicans on the economy, while 38 percent trust the Republicans more.

        If there’s no deal to raise the debt ceiling, the poll finds, voters would, 48 percent to 34 percent blame congressional Republicans over the president.

        Sixty-seven percent say that an agreement to raise the debt ceiling should include not just spending cuts but tax increases for the rich and corporations, while 25 percent disagree.

        And, yes, there is also less than good public opinion news for the President in the poll but pretty much no good news for Republicans.  Looks like Dems might finally be managing a little improvement in the messaging dept. On the whole, looks like no matter how unhappy the public may be with the way Obama is handling the economy right now, they see the GOP as an even worse alternative and trust the GOP to look out for their interests much less. A step in a wised up direction.

        http://www.politico.com/news/s

          1. Rs suck more doesn’t bode well for a repeat of 2010 GOP success. That was an election where people were unhappy and decided it was time to try something else. Well, they tried it and it looks like most didn’t like it.  That sets up a situation where Dem pols at least have a fighting chance of making some progress with the ball in their court.  Let’s hope they don’t find a way to screw it up and that Rs continue to find ways to look worse.

              1. Still haven’t addressed any of the poll numbers or anything else factual in anyone’s posts.   So far you’ve just called me Biden, Hillary and now something about the French. You just keep proving my point over and over and over and over… you’ve got nothing. It’s really pathetic.

        1. bate:  to lessen the force of, moderate.  (you know, like abate).

          or,

          falconry term – to flap the wings wildly, as if in impatience.

          I think you meant race bait.

          You’re welcome for the lesson.  Now, would you also accept lessons in the Constitution and logic?

  3. We’re not suspending the special-interest tax holiday for millionaires if we default on Aug 2nd, but we’ll screw over veterans and the military:


    Failure to raise the government’s debt ceiling could lead to cuts in pay and benefits for federal civilian employees, military members and veterans, according to a new analysis.

    In a report published Tuesday, the Bipartisan Policy Center found that unless the debt ceiling is raised, federal spending would be cut by 44 percent in August. Under several scenarios, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner could prioritize spending to include reductions in pay for government workers, the group said.

    “Our analysis shows that the government will be unable to pay all of its bills on Aug. 3 or sometime soon thereafter,” said Jay Powell, visiting scholar at BPC and former undersecretary of the Treasury for finance. “The choices would not be pretty.”

    According to BPC, Treasury could exhaust its cash flow in August paying only for interest on existing debt, Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, unemployment insurance and defense contracts. Unless these programs were cut, departments such as the Justice, Labor and Commerce could go unfunded, as could veterans’ benefits, military pay and federal civilian compensation, the report found.

    http://www.govexec.com/dailyfe

    So, about to go to school on the GI Bill and you need your tuition and stipend? Military family making ends meet in Fountain while your spouse is deployed in AFPAK or Iraq? A veteran 100% disabled from PTSD or a severe polytrauma wound from combat? Military Civilian working in logistics getting mail, food and bullets to the troops?

    Fuck ALL of you, courtesy of the Republican’t Party. Don’t worry – the checks to Blackwater and Northup Grumman will still  be going out…

    1. Always put more benies for non-job producing (not so far, ten years in with all their breaks) super wealthy ahead of vets. It’s enough to take the photo ops, shoot your mouth off about toughness and patriotism and slap on the magnet.

        1. God, what a host of great songs: “Angel from Montgomery,” “Illegal Smile,” “Paradise,” “Pretty Good,” “Donald and Lydia”…and not a Southern guy, either, like he looks on the cover. Chicago-bred.

          I have a feeling that something else Prine will show up tomorrow, as well.

  4. http://www.politico.com/news/s

    A company that laid off hundreds of employees. A federal “bailout” to rescue a failing bank. Mitt Romney, at the center of it all.

    It’s a story line from a tough Democratic ad that was teed up for use against Romney in his 1994 Senate campaign in Massachusetts. The spot, which was provided exclusively to POLITICO, never actually aired. But it’s all but certain that some version of its allegations will surface in either the GOP primary or the general election, if Romney makes it that far.

    Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/s



  5. I can’t add much to this:

    Has America become a nation of psychotics? You would certainly think so, based on the explosion in the use of antipsychotic medications. In 2008, with over $14 billion in sales, antipsychotics became the single top-selling therapeutic class of prescription drugs in the United States, surpassing drugs used to treat high cholesterol and acid reflux.

    1. that Libertad has a large personal responsibility for this massive outlay, or that the outlay would be much, much higher if Libertad would just stay on his meds as prescribed?

      1. 73% of all healthcare spending in the USA comes from Medicaid, Medicare ….. Government programs.

        Your government has your neighbor addicted to these mental babysitters and you foot the bill.

  6. Secretary of State Scott Gessler on Channel Nine’ Your Show:

    http://www.9news.com/news/arti

    said that although the Office of Secretary of State should be non-partisan, he governs from a “conservative framework” and that means “Voter Photo ID’ and citizenship verification.

    He has no verifiable data from Colorado on voter fraud, however, he believes in fire extinguishers (a tortured metaphor, but he is Bush’s cousin..looks like him…sounds like him..how lucky can this country get?) and therefore Voter photo ID is necessary as a preventive measure.

    And the Democratic party structure response?  My sources tell me that they hope to have a “poll watcher” at every poll in 2012….this is like sending a squirt gun to put out

    a four alarm fire.

    1. is the Bush ( the W in GW stands for Walker) is the Bush cousin.  You don’t mean to tell me Gessler is, too?  Oh, nos!

      But the party had better come up with something more pro-active.  We need to get our HD Chairs to nag our County Chairs to nag the State Chair about it.

        1. This is the second time I have gotten Gessler and Stapleton mixed up.  I just googled them both and read their biographies. Both have MBA. Gessler from Yale; Stapleton from Harvard. Both are better educated than I had suspected.

          They look alike to me, they sound alike, their backgrounds are geniune WASP.  Now, this is a serious question:  How do the rest of you tell them apart?

  7. My family had a vacation in DC last month (Thanks Sen. Bennet!). Our nation’s capital is reflective of our nation’s decline.

    1. The “grass” on the National Mall is in tatters

    2. Over half the escalators in the Metro are broken

    3. I couldn’t get cell service outside the Library of Congress.

    Meanwhile, everything has stopped because Congress can’t pass a housekeeping matter about the debt ceiling.

    All of this, ALL of this, can be dumped on the GOP whose sole purpose is to stop President Obama.  And, whose only ideas are to cut spending, i.e.  cut jobs!,

    and not raise taxes……….on the wealthy.

    We need a jobs program to do things like, oh I don’t know, FIX OUR IFRASTRUCTURE?

    But with today’s GOP we are so screwed.

    1. Just the other day my wife and I were discussing the same thing.  She lived for many years in DC and during a recent visit mentioned that the nation’s capital city is looking worn and beaten.

      – trash in the streets

      – buildings in disrepair

      – Washington monument cracking (we discussed this with a park ranger there)

      – and on, and on…

      I don’t blame just the Republicans. Americans are too accustomed to having it easy. Democrats and Republicans and everyone is responsible – but we cede our interest to television and video games and bemoan the state of affairs while watching our asses grow larger and larger.

      Whew, sorry. Touched a nerve there.  

    2. The GOP is in control of 1/3 or the government, and that’s only in the last seven months. Dems have controlled a majority of the government since 2006 – are you better off now than you were then?

      This is the Obama/Dem great recession.

      Perhaps infrastructure would have been a good stimulus plan instead of greasing public employee unions, eh?

      1. The fact remains America’s infrastructure is falling apart – roads, buildings, manufacturing, monuments, parks, forests, bridges, tunnels, dams, transmission lines, electric grids…

        Won’t debate the stimulus package with you, but it was a drop in the river of funding that is needed to rebuild and modernize our aging infrastructure.

        Everyone keeps whistling past the graveyard and blaming others. Meanwhile, little if anything is getting fixed because we have no money to spend and no way to raise it.

        Recipe for disaster.

      2. (how’s that for fractured analogies?)

        Now, according to you, we’ve got Dems in control since 2006. Bravo! You’ve really outdone yourself.

        But wait, there’s more! Dems now caused the Great Recession!

        But wait, there’s even more! Can’t forget union thugs destroying the American way of life.

        1. The conservative polsters like elbow , tad, bj, ad nauseum are clueless and/or just plain liars.  I’m sure they are not rich. so I can’t explain it.  Since I’m posting from an iPhone in Fl, I can’t respond fully.  Everyone else is doing a great job of exposing their ignorance.  Too bad GOP leaders are also so moronic.

  8. Sorry, but i couldn’t find a better place to post this than in the “open thread”. I was notified late last night of this new website hoping to “dethrone the queen”!

    http://www.noamystephens.com/i

    I didnt realize how many “progressive” issues she has taken up in the House.  Will conservatives pay attention, or is her power too great?

    1. An anonymous website decrying one of the more conservative members of the Colorado legislature as a progressive.

      Rich.

      I’m not a big Stephens fan, she reminds me of a praying mantis waiting to eat the head off of her mate. But, she has learned to work with other legislators to pass bills – which is something many Republicans still aren’t sure how to do in Colorado.

      Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on how you look at it, Stephens will have to start cat fighting with the younger breed of liberty lovers.

      Here’s one that “spent her formative years reading a series of books that explain the free-market theory to teens”. She also, “has taken a very public stand against one of the most powerful women within the state Republican Party, House Majority Leader Amy Stephens of Monument”.

      http://www.csindy.com/colorado

      What a lucky day for us all if another home schooled, uber right Republican unseats the Majority Leader…

    1. then they need to make sure they follow the judge’s rules and build up solid cases. It’s not worth the taxpayer’s money and the court’s time otherwise.

  9. as explained on the excellent Puck Daddy blog at Yahoo! Sports…

    To the surprise of no one, the Detroit Red Wings and Pittsburgh Penguins have some happy fans. But the rest of the top 10 has its surprises.

    Who do you believe are the easiest and more difficult teams to be a fan of in the NHL?The methodology of this study, via The Business Journals, was based on a 50/50 formula:

       Ten-season record: Half of each team’s score was tied to its performance during the past 10 seasons. A team was awarded 10 points for each overall championship over that span, as well as six points for each losing appearance in the title game, three points for being eliminated in the semifinals of the playoffs, and one point for being eliminated in the quarterfinals.

       Eight teams, as a result, divided a total of 26 points in each of a sport’s 10 seasons. The total 10-year scores for all teams were then converted to a standard deviation scale.

       Landmarks: The other 50 percent of each team’s score was based on the number of seasons that have elapsed since the team last reached three key landmarks:

       Its most recent overall championship

       Its most recent appearance in the title game, whether winning or losing

       Its most recent appearance in the quarterfinals of the playoffs, whether winning or losing

       If a team has not reached a given landmark in its history, the figure inserted in the appropriate category was the number of years the franchise has existed.

       Each team’s 10-year totals in the three categories were converted to standard deviation scales.

    http://sports.yahoo.com/nhl/bl

      1. It’s worse, and it’s not getting better.  14 straight weeks of unemployment claims over 400,000.

        They have no idea what they’re doing, their economic philosophy is demonstrably wrong, and we’re more in debt thanks to his regime than we’ll ever be able to get out of without brutal, painful cuts to existing entitlement programs.

        Bravo!

          1. Their estimations of unemployment with and without the stimulus we obviously not rooted in reality.

            They had no idea what their “stimulus” would do, and it was rushed through as though the republic depended on it.

            We are in the most precarious financial situation in our nation’s history, and it’s due to the spending of this President, the creation of a new non-deficit-neutral HUGE, underfunded entitlement (ObamacareВ®) and an unprecedented expansion of government in dire economic times.

            Again, bravo!

            1. To prove it wrong, you’d need to show the results of the alternative (including doing nothing – the Republican choice). You don’t even attempt to do this. Rather, you just resort to unproven, unprovable talking points.

              We’ve all seen the graph:

              Deficit mostly due to Bush tax cuts + 2 debt-financed wars + Great Recession. Stimulus is a small part.

              Maybe you’re just too busy to chase down references that support your position. But instead of sweeping statements (“most precarious financial situation in our nation’s history”), maybe it’s time to give it a rest. You’re starting to lumped with Libby and Arap precisely because you’re making a lot of unsupported (or worse, easily refuted) assertions.

            2. do you mean by “precarious financial situation is due to the spending” of the previous president, “the creation of a new non-deficit-neutral HUGE underfunded entitlement” (Medicare Part D) and two wars put on a credit card?

              1. I mean a brand new, underfunded entitlement that most Americans didn’t want that vastly expands government and government control.

                It was the turning point for me from being merely disappointed in the candidate I supported to realizing that I need to do everything in my power (politically, and as a citizen) to get him out of office in 2012.

        1. it makes me think of Laughing Boy and it makes me sad because that LB was so smart and engaged in such intelligent back and forth. Any similarity in tag MUST be sheer coincidence.

        2. ellbee,I know you’re now currently a fullblown member of “The Stimulus Failed” Cult these days, and I’d be happy to hijack an entire thread to pummel you with facts and statistics from mainstream economists on why the majority of what the Recovery Act did was positive.

          But I’ll cut to the chase – as the title says, the Recovery Act succeeded because we are not in an economic depression:

          From The Economist:


          The depression that might have been

             In a new paper, the economists argue that without the Wall Street bailout, the bank stress tests, the emergency lending and asset purchases by the Federal Reserve, and the Obama administration’s fiscal stimulus program, the nation’s gross domestic product would be about 6.5 percent lower this year.

             In addition, there would be about 8.5 million fewer jobs, on top of the more than 8 million already lost; and the economy would be experiencing deflation, instead of low inflation…

             Mr. Blinder and Mr. Zandi find that the financial stabilization measures – the Troubled Asset Relief Program, as the bailout is known, along with the bank stress tests and the Fed’s actions – have had a relatively greater impact than the stimulus program.

             If the fiscal stimulus alone had been enacted, and not the financial measures, they concluded, real G.D.P. would have fallen 5 percent last year, with 12 million jobs lost. But if only the financial measures had been enacted, and not the stimulus, real G.D.P. would have fallen nearly 4 percent, with 10 million jobs lost.

          http://www.economist.com/blogs

          Again, I’d love to beat you senseless with facts and statistics over this issue over steaks, but this is my trump card.

          1. If they had no idea it would be as bad as it is, why should I have confidence that spending a trillion dollars kept it from being any worse?

            Two economists do not a trump card make.

            There are plenty of economists that think the eventual impact of Obama’s spending will be detrimental to the country, and as your own link mentions, people still debate the true impact of 30s-era stimulus.

            1. but two batshit crazy econ grad students from UCLA do not make a counterargument. I’ve got more links than this one, where are yours?

              I’ll even bring you my previous year’s worth of The Economist, and let you dog-ear all the articles that back up your lame argument, and I’ll mark mine. Majority wins…

              Secondly, when did you start adopting Libertad math standards? The Recovery Act was $787 billion not a trillion. Dems had a super majority and controlled things 2009-2010, not since 2006. You’re a much more compelling poster when you don’t do this stupid shit….

              1. I actually really like this analysis of the stimulus.

                http://nationalaffairs.com/pub

                At first glance, the Obama administration would seem to be taking such an empirical approach. In an attempt to “know” as much as possible about the consequences of the stimulus bill, the administration has been compiling data to measure its effects. Indeed, the vaunted stimulus web site (recovery.gov) claims to provide state-level job-creation “data,” reported to two decimals of accuracy.

                In reality, however, this ostensible effort at transparency is actually the least credible part of the whole case for the 2009 stimulus bill. For one thing, the reporting errors involved in the data collection are enormous, as hardly anyone accurately fills out the government’s questionnaires about the jobs “saved or created” with stimulus money. Some employers, for instance, have counted money used to provide pay raises to existing employees as “creating” jobs. Thus the Wall Street Journal reported last November that the Mid-Willamette Valley Community Action Agency in Oregon had claimed to create 205 jobs with its $397,761 in stimulus money – spending less than $2,000 per “new” job.

                The results of gathering economic data this way can be downright comical. A shoe-store owner in Kentucky who sold boots to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (for work on a project made possible by stimulus funds) claimed to have created nine jobs with $889 – a feat that would certainly make him the most efficient job creator in the country. The store owner apparently reasoned that he was creating one job for every pair of boots he sold the Army; after all, a soldier could not go to work on the project without a pair of boots. The episode received attention only because a reporter discovered the ridiculous claim, and the owner then asserted that he had been confused by the government form.

                The administration has nevertheless accepted such reports, using them as the basis of their stimulus evaluations. But even if the reporting were perfectly correct, the exercise would still make little sense as a way of assessing the broader macroeconomic effects of the stimulus money. When we talk about the impact of government purchases on aggregate demand, and therefore on job creation, we must take into account an enormous number of “general equilibrium effects” – that is, the indirect effects that occur as one economic variable influences another, which in turn influences yet another, and so on. Such effects can be modeled and analyzed to some extent, but they cannot possibly be captured by crude job-creation surveys, or easily conveyed through administration web sites and talking points.

                1. I keep losing track of who you are fighting against, ellllllbeeee.

                  From your quote:

                  Some employers, for instance, have counted money used to provide pay raises to existing employees as “creating” jobs.

                  So, because private employers cannot account for “jobs created” and thus supply bogus numbers, you continue to argue that government is the problem?

                  Seems to me if we had a CCC-like program, and cut out the profiteering middlemen, we’d be much further ahead on the job creation front. (This from someone (me!) who makes a living as a “private” contractor working on government-funded projects.)

                  Riiiiight!

                  1. …is my boogeyman.

                    You can’t get that guy off the puck in the offensive zone, and he’s simply the best defensive forward in years.

                    Now, in response to the meat of your question, though, I think the Mankiw quote I posted just helps illustrate how simply incompetent the administration was in its crafting, selling, and reporting on the stimulus.

                    They made this completely erroneous “Saved and created” metric, that demonstrably means absolutely nothing.

                    So it’s just one small piece of the larger turd pie that was the stimulus, which, unfortunately, the ACA makes look like the greatest bill in the history of the country in comparison.

                    Government is always the problem.

                    1. or maybe the simplistic slogans repeated by those who ought to know better.

                      The country to which I pledge allegiance has a government that is of, by, and for the people.

                      Government is always the problem.

                      In my country, when someone claims that “government” is THE problem, that person is actually denigrating his/her neighbors and friends and colleagues.

                      What country do you live in?

                2. ..but it does NOT refute my main point that the Recovery Act & TARP prevented a depression.

                  (And you get ONE right-wing site to quote from on this…anything else has to be mainstream.)

                  If we want to talk about the relative success of the Recovery Act, or more specifically, why we should do more:


                  ON BALANCE, I agree with the “it’s insane” analysis offered by Matthew Yglesias of America’s refusal to borrow money at historically cheap rates and spend it on infrastructure and other job-generating activities that will need to be undertaken eventually anyway. Certainly low demand isn’t the only reason why unemployment remains stubbornly high in this recovery; in many sectors, technological change and globalisation have a lot to do with it. But technological change and globalisation have absolutely nothing to do with high unemployment in the construction sector. The people who build things in America will always be Americans, and there haven’t been any revolutions in construction technology between 2007 and 2011 that have made it possible to build bridges, tunnels, trains, electric grids and highways with far fewer employees. The reason the construction sector is sitting on the couch playing with the Wii instead of out fixing America is that America isn’t spending the money to do the fixing. America has a $2 trillion backlog of infrastructure maintenance, according to the Urban Land Institute. With the government able to borrow money at ridiculously low 10-year rates, it seems pretty convincing that we should be borrowing that money and spending it now, both to improve that infrastructure and to get the economy going.

                  http://www.economist.com/blogs

          1. The label on the “y” axis is Thousands of Lost Jobs. So, -700 would be a negative 700,000 lost jobs which would equal a positive 700,000 found jobs.

            If this is typical of the quality of Business Insider’s data presentation, I would name this page a clusterf@*k rather than Clusterstock.

            Of course, I learned about numbers in a public school from teachers paid from other people’s taxes, so maybe I’m slightly mistaken?

            1. However, I think holding any president in the modern economy responsible for the jobs picture is a bit tenuous.

              There’s not getting away from the political spin – but it’s not one guy.

  10. From the Quinnipiac University Poll, which conducts public opinion surveys in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Ohio, Virginia and the nation as a public service and for research.

    Results of a recent poll by the Quinnipiac University release July 14, 2011:

    The country is in a recession, 71 percent of American voters say, but by 54 – 27 percent they blame former President George W. Bush more than President Obama.

    Obama outscores congressional Republicans on several points in the deficit reduction battle:  

    –Voters will blame Republicans over Obama 48 – 34 percent if the debt limit is not raised;

    –Voters say 67 – 25 percent that an agreement to raise the debt ceiling should include tax hikes for the wealthy and corporations, not just spending cuts;

    –Voters say 45 – 37 percent that Obama’s proposals to raise revenues are “closing loopholes,” rather than “tax hikes”….

    1. hope it dosen’t get too bad.  The 2 foot wide sleepy creek behind my office in E Boulder is about 30 feet wide and will probably overtake the pedestrian bridge soon.  Crazy.

  11. I cleaned up shop and sold all of my stock today, which was a pretty sizeable chunk.  Anything that wasn’t in a retirement acct, education acct, etc. is SOLD.

    We will reach some sort of debt limit deal, but the signals that are sent out by this whole sad affair will lead to an erosion in confidence beyond the control of those who send them (Obama/Cantor/Boehner, etc.)

    Moodys downgrade, China refusing to lend anymore on the same terms, or something else similar to that will happen, and we will probably have a sharp and significant drop.

    My two cents.  I may be wrong but that is my bet.

  12. The secretive American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) used the 2010 GOP takeover of 21 states (governorships plus both legislative chambers) to introduce far-right legislation affecting every facet of American life.

    The model legislation was developed by the corporations long before the 2010 elections and introduced by their GOP lackeys.  More than 800 documents were leaked to The Nation magazine.

    http://www.thenation.com/artic

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