One Punch Is Not Enough

It would be too easy to ask ,”What were they smoking?”, and for me, not quite accurate since I understood (didn’t agree but understood) all the euphoria behind BHO. Bushlash was a fairly common malady among Americans and just about any alternative would be looked at hard. But this clean articulate half black man from Chicago, all I can say is Just Wow. For those that had not being paying attention, those not aware of what he had actually done, said, and stood for (meaning most of the voters out there) it was a new dawn.

So, what level of buyer’s remorse is out there?

It was not suppose to turn out this way. For a man that had such potential, such vision, and such a bullet proof super majority in both houses, how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles? The “John Carter” of politics was a “wish” sandwich, a cream puff with no cream, and worse then a bounced check.

How about we let someone have a shot?

Comments are closed.

  1. CM

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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  2. Section8

    Ah right, it’s all obvious that I’m wrong that you can’t lower yourself enough to even explain

    What’s to explain? Who has been president the last 3 1/2 years? Who did the trillion dollar stimulus to rebuild the roads and bridges and who is asking for more? I guess we’re building platinum bridges now, but I have yet to see them. Who had charts and everything telling us this stimulus would work?

    As for McCain, you guys can’t get out of that mode of if we don’t like one we must love the other. Chances are McCain would have sucked (and I’d be bitching about him), and if Romney wins and if he doesn’t have good fiscal discipline, which he probably won’t people here will bitch about him too. But they aren’t the fricking president right now.

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  3. CM

    What’s to explain? Who has been president the last 3 1/2 years?

    Obama.

    Who did the trillion dollar stimulus to rebuild the roads and bridges and who is asking for more?

    Misleading. The stimulus was a bipartisan plan. And almost all economists agreed with it. And the majority believe it did what it was intended to do.
    The asking for more part is, in large part, about addressing the deficit.

    I guess we’re building platinum bridges now, but I have yet to see them. Who had charts and everything telling us this stimulus would work?

    As outlined in my link, it’s difficult to find prominent economists, even Republican ones, who said the stimulus wouldn’t work. And most believe it did.

    As for McCain, you guys can’t get out of that mode of if we don’t like one we must love the other.

    Not even remotely implying that. However a voter in 2008 (which is what the video is about) was largely stuck with two voting choices. It’s disingenious to criticise the decisions the winner made when they acted on the best advice, and the other candidate was getting the same advice and would presumably have done pretty much the same thing.
    So the best answer to “how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?” is the GFC. It’s a far better answer than “Obama”.

    Chances are McCain would have sucked (and I’d be bitching about him), and if Romney wins and if he doesn’t have good fiscal discipline, which he probably won’t people here will bitch about him too. But they aren’t the fricking president right now.

    What you’re all suggesting is that Obama should have ignored the advice of the economists (Democrat, Republican and independent economists). You also all seem to under some impression that economists are now in agreement that it was a failure.

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  4. HARLEY

    uh? when did you move to the states? or are you talking about NZ?

    The GFC, the global financial crisis.

    uh ok was this conversation not about Obama and the cluster fuck he has brought on us and not per say the GFC? or are we just randomly posting new topics? or bleeding over from other posts?

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  5. HARLEY

    What you’re all suggesting is that Obama should have ignored the advice of the economists (Democrat, Republican and independent economists). You also all seem to under some impression that economists are now in agreement that it was a failure.

    he has, and ignored his own jobs council, and the budge council, from just last year….
    and many are in agreement, not all that is economic polices are not helping…
    If you are missing that … well…

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  6. hist_ed

    I wasn’t happy with my choice in 2008. As sucky as McCain probably would have been, he would have a few positives. McCain was always a deficit hawk, he would not have pushed for the spending that Obama foisted on us. He would not have passed Obamacare or anything like it. He would not have shit all over our allies and ass kissed our enemies and he is, generally, an honorable man. And his AG (Guiliani? Thompson? maybe Christie?) would not have sold guns to Mexican drug cartels.

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  7. CM

    uh ok was this conversation not about Obama and the cluster fuck he has brought on us and not per say the GFC? or are we just randomly posting new topics? or bleeding over from other posts?

    It’s the most obvious answer to the question I quoted. As explained above.

    he has,

    How has he? How has he ignored what most economists say?

    and ignored his own jobs council, and the budge council, from just last year….

    That job council you link to is specifically about energy. Obviously a President has a whole range of issues to consider. And the numbers on jobs from Keystone was way overblown.
    On the other hand, Romney wants to take measures that will kill energy jobs.

    and many are in agreement, not all that is economic polices are not helping…
    If you are missing that … well…

    Many consider that not all are not helping?
    I assume you mean that some economists can point to some parts of his economic policy and conclude that it doesn’t help with jobs. That’s almost meaningless – and would be the same for any President.

    Again, he took the advice of the consensus of economists. And most say it worked (things would clearly have been far worse if he hadn’t). The main debate between economists was whether the stimulus was big enough, not whether there should be one or not.
    You can say he made the wrong choice, but you can’t say it without acknowledging that the choice he made was informed by specialists in economics. If he made any other choice and it didn’t work, he’d be getting slammed for ignoring expert advice.

    I wasn’t happy with my choice in 2008. As sucky as McCain probably would have been, he would have a few positives. McCain was always a deficit hawk, he would not have pushed for the spending that Obama foisted on us.

    McCain’s stimulus would no doubt have involved spending less.
    28% of Obama’s stimulus was tax cuts.

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  8. Poosh

    Again, he took the advice of the consensus of economists. And most say it worked (things would clearly have been far worse if he hadn’t). The main debate between economists was whether the stimulus was big enough, not whether there should be one or not.

    lol

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  9. Poosh

    Economists say stimulus won’t work – Jan 2009

    Even as an $819 billion economic stimulus bill moves forward in Congress, about 200 economists have signed an advertisement saying that it won’t work … The signers include some prominent names, including those of Nobel prize winners James Buchanan, Edward Prescott and Vernon Smith.

    A stimulus is meant to create energy leading towards an immediate economic recovery and one that is sustainable, plus overturn a recession. How’d that turn out eh? But then, you could always argue the stimulus wasn’t big enough … some people never learn. It’s like inception.

    And the numbers on jobs from Keystone was way overblown.

    Good news for those 3,000 or whatever people who now have to live without a decent temporary job (almost all construction jobs are temporary…). I guess they should do something unproductive and defunct like help build windfarms. Good use of precious resources and manpower there.

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  10. CM

    …in a survey of leading economists conducted by the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, 92 percent agreed that the stimulus succeeded in reducing the jobless rate. On the harder question of whether the benefit exceeded the cost, more than half thought it did, one in three was uncertain, and fewer than one in six disagreed.

    Or consider the widely despised bank bailouts. Populist politicians on both sides have taken to pounding the table against them (in many cases, only after voting for them). But while the public may not like them, there’s a striking consensus that they helped: The same survey found no economists willing to dispute the idea that the bailouts lowered unemployment.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-07-23/the-u-s-economic-policy-debate-is-a-sham.html

    A stimulus is meant to create energy leading towards an immediate economic recovery and one that is sustainable, plus overturn a recession. How’d that turn out eh?

    Who suggested that? Why don’t you add “and cure cancer” as well?

    But then, you could always argue the stimulus wasn’t big enough … some people never learn. It’s like inception.

    No, you couldn’t “always argue” it if it didn’t make economic sense.

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  11. CM

    I acknowledge that not ALL economists agreed with it (beforehand). As you point out, some disagreed.

    Here is an interview with one of the economists (who signed up to that Cato advert) 8 months later:

    ESQ: So let me ask you this: How confident are you? If you were president, would you really have refused to do a stimulus?

    AB: I think it’s a hard question to answer — I’m an economist and I think as an economist. But in a political situation there are many other things that you have to consider. I can understand very well if you’re seen as the president and don’t do anything and it gets worse, you go down in history as the criminal. So I don’t know what I would have done. I would have put more money into the safety net than infrastructure probably. And I would have cut tax rates as opposed to giving back checks. But would I have had the guts to say, Look, there’s nothing we can do — just sit tight and wait? I don’t know.

    http://www.esquire.com/the-side/richardson-report/economist-reflects-on-stimulus-092909

    ‘Hard question to answer’ is far from a straught out ‘Yes’.

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  12. Mississippi Yankee

    Again, he took the advice of the consensus of economists. And most say it worked (things would clearly have been far worse if he hadn’t). The main debate between economists was whether the stimulus was big enough, not whether there should be one or not.
    You can say he made the wrong choice, but you can’t say it without acknowledging that the choice he made was informed by specialists in economics. If he made any other choice and it didn’t work, he’d be getting slammed for ignoring expert advice.

    CM,
    Allow me to ONCE AGAIN direct your attention to Drs. Walter Williams and Thomas Sowell. In fact the last time I brought them up, and you ignored them, I even linked to their credentials.

    Italicized words are yours I only point them out to denote the fallacy of your assumptions.

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  13. Poosh

    No, you couldn’t “always argue” it if it didn’t make economic sense.

    92 percent of the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business? They must be right then!

    That being said, the 1st and 2nd stimulus were different in scope and logic, so is my understanding, that stat, at least, would refer to the 1st. The 2nd stimulus was the real Keynsian you-scratch-my-back-i’ll-scratch-yours stinker. But it really doesn’t matter. You said no prominent economists (as if you have to be prominent to be correct), and as usual you’re just repeating what you read from bad sources. Which is why I keep demanding you provide better sources, not fucking Think Progress or the Economist.

    Who suggested that? Why don’t you add “and cure cancer” as well?

    That is why I have moved quickly to work with my economic team and leaders of both parties on an American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan that will immediately jumpstart job creation and long-term growth.

    – Obama, 2009

    Yes he didn’t say it would happen overnight, and that it would get worse before get better, but it’s been three years so that’s pretty null now.

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  14. Poosh

    . I would have put more money into the safety net than infrastructure probably. And I would have cut tax rates as opposed to giving back checks.

    BLAM! So he wouldn’t have done what Obama did. In fact he would have done what most of us here, I think, would have done. What’s ya point?

    But yes, it’s true, that as a president politician it’s very hard to have balls and you’re hands are tied for the most part. But Obama’s hands weren’t tied. He had the politicians, the media and the world behind him. But as a generic politician/president it’s true, you don’t want to be seen as doing “nothing” for political reasons.

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  15. Poosh

    prominent economists

    What about people who, you know, make up the economy? I.e business leaders.

    You know many economists and politicians, it must be said, have no knowledge of how business works or how businessmen or poor/middle class consumers make choices yet they presume to know how they function within an economy. Not even at that basic level, even smaller than “small businessmen”.

    It was pointed out that Lenin’s entire knowledge of capitalism, outside of reading Marx, was simply his stint as some sort of clerk (or the report of one of his comrades working as a clerk), and from that he inferred he knew everything about capitalism.

    Not that businessmen are smarter/better than economists. Plenty of idiot businessmen and billionaires out there. But they should go hand in hand imo.

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  16. CM

    Allow me to ONCE AGAIN direct your attention to Drs. Walter Williams and Thomas Sowell. In fact the last time I brought them up, and you ignored them, I even linked to their credentials.

    Italicized words are yours I only point them out to denote the fallacy of your assumptions.

    1. I didn’t ignore them. A couple of days ago I read some of Sowell’s most recent pieces. It was about 90% political and 10% economic. And very lightweight. Has he published anything in any detail about the stimulus?
    2. Their existence, and what they say, doesn’t make what I said a fallacy. If I claimed ‘all’, you’d be right. I didn’t, so you’re not.

    92 percent of the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business? They must be right then!

    Try reading it again, that’s not even remotely close.

    The 2nd stimulus was the real Keynsian you-scratch-my-back-i’ll-scratch-yours stinker.

    How so? (I’m not arguing either way, just interested to see what you base that on)

    But it really doesn’t matter. You said no prominent economists

    That’s not what I said at all.

    (as if you have to be prominent to be correct),

    Not what I said. And what I mean by prominent is reputable, or credible. People who are respected in their field. For example they’re published economic research.

    and as usual you’re just repeating what you read from bad sources.

    1. What are the ‘bad’ sources?
    2. How are they ‘bad’?

    Come on, you’re being as lazy as Alex now.

    Which is why I keep demanding you provide better sources, not fucking Think Progress or the Economist.

    Who are your ‘better sources’? Why is “a survey of leading economists conducted by the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business” not credible?

    The consensus isn’t the result of a faux poll of left-wing ideologues. Rather, the findings come from the Economic Experts Panel run by Booth’s Initiative on Global Markets. It’s a recurring survey of about 40 economists from around the U.S. It includes Democrats, Republicans and independent academics from the top economics departments in the country. The only things that unite them are their first-rate credentials and their interest in public policy.

    Yes he didn’t say it would happen overnight, and that it would get worse before get better, but it’s been three years so that’s pretty null now.

    “Yes, he said something different, but I’m going to pretend it’s the same. I’m also going to continue to peddle the nonsense that Obama said people didn’t build their own businesses”.

    BLAM! So he wouldn’t have done what Obama did. In fact he would have done what most of us here, I think, would have done. What’s ya point?

    BLAM? My point is that when asked later on, his responses are considerably more nuanced than a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’. The Cato advert was obviously very blunt.
    And in fact he was signing his name to be against this ‘smoking-gun’ quote of Obama’s :

    There is no disagreement that we need action by our government, a recovery plan that will help to jumpstart the economy.

    http://www.cato.org/special/stimulus09/cato_stimulus.pdf

    Putting more money into the safety net than infrastructure and cutting tax rates (again, over a quarter of the stimulus was tax cuts) IS government action, and is (or is part of) a recovery plan, in an attempt to jumpstart the economy.
    Interestingly, Esquire had to contact 6 of the economists on that list before they got a single reply.

    But yes, it’s true, that as a president politician it’s very hard to have balls and you’re hands are tied for the most part. But Obama’s hands weren’t tied. He had the politicians, the media and the world behind him. But as a generic politician/president it’s true, you don’t want to be seen as doing “nothing” for political reasons.

    I largely agree with that. However, again, it’s not like most economists were saying “do nothing”. Not even the Cato economists were saying that.

    What about people who, you know, make up the economy? I.e business leaders.

    They’re effectively going to be lobbyists. Professional economists have an interest in public policy. Business leaders only do to the extent that it assists business leaders.
    That’s not to say they shouldn’t always be an important part of the public debate and discussion. It would be ridiculous if they weren’t.

    You know many economists and politicians, it must be said, have no knowledge of how business works or how businessmen or poor/middle class consumers make choices yet they presume to know how they function within an economy. Not even at that basic level, even smaller than “small businessmen”.

    I would assume that reputable and respected economists certainly do have great knowledge about how business works and how consumers make choices. Otherwise they wouldn’t be reputable and respected in their profession. No one group is going to know more than them. No group should be less biased. That’s the whole point.
    I would agree that politicians don’t necessarily have great knowledge or expertise in certain areas. But their job is to make public policy decisions with the best information they can find from those that do have great knowledge and expertise. Again, that’s the whole point. Politicians aren’t expected to be experts in specific fields. That’s not why we vote for them.
    You can say “what does a lefty politician know about running a business – how dare they make regulations when they have no idea”, but the obvious counter is “what does that rich successful right wing politician know about living on the minimum wage – how dare they vote not to increase it”.

    Not that businessmen are smarter/better than economists. Plenty of idiot businessmen and billionaires out there. But they should go hand in hand imo.

    As I say I think business leaders are integral to the discussion. But they’re always going to be less likely to be considering the bigger picture. They’re coming from a specific place within the system. They’re not dispassionate/disinterested parties making independent non-partisan recommendations.

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  17. Poosh

    I didn’t ignore them. A couple of days ago I read some of Sowell’s most recent pieces. It was about 90% political and 10% economic. And very lightweight. Has he published anything in any detail about the stimulus?

    A. You did ignore them. B. You fucking idiot. C. After calling Sowell lightweight you just showed your fucking ignorance . D. Why read anything else you write? You pleb.

    Disgusting. F*ck this.

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  18. CM

    A. You did ignore them. B. You fucking idiot. C. After calling Sowell lightweight you just showed your fucking ignorance . D. Why read anything else you write? You pleb.

    Disgusting. F*ck this.

    Ah, I see, the go-to post when you’ve got nothing.

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  19. Iconoclast

    … and how responsible is Obama for that?

    Sorry, we keep forgetting the Offical Party Narrative:

    Nothing is Ever Obama’s Fault.

    Everything is Always Bush’s Fault.

    The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies. … Increasing America’s debt weakens us domestically and internationally. Leadership means that “the buck stops here.” Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better.

    Those are Obama’s own words, which he spoke during his floor speech in the U.S. Senate on March 20, 2006. And now that he is in the Oval Office, well, of course things are different. A Democrat now resides at the White House, so the “buck” doesn’t have to “stop here” any more…

    Typical liberal double-standards.

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  20. Poosh

    Ah, I see, the go-to post when you’ve got nothing.

    Ah, the go-to-post when I’ve decided to stop reading your rants because it’s a waste of my time and you’re too goddamn stupid to understand anything anyone else has to say. The insult towards Thomas Sowell was the last straw. Think what you want if it makes your tiny mind happy! I’m joining the rest in ignoring you. Good luck to anyone else who’s gonna bother with you. I mean Jesus, you’re so fucking thick, look at the quote you think proves that Sowell thinks stimulus is a good thing! Hasn’t every single person here been telling you that.. you know what, I’m done. Stopping typing.

    i.e I’m doing what Jim keeps advising us to do. Some of us take a while to figure it out, would have saved us a lot of trouble if we just listened to him.

    I wish someone from the other side who was smart and intelligent would come along and challenge what we believe and offer decent arguments.

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  21. Kimpost

    I wish someone from the other side who was smart and intelligent would come along and challenge what we believe and offer decent arguments.

    :) Yeah, right…

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  22. CM

    Sorry, we keep forgetting the Offical Party Narrative:

    Nothing is Ever Obama’s Fault.

    Everything is Always Bush’s Fault.

    How about just not replacing it with the exact opposite?

    Ah, the go-to-post when I’ve decided to stop reading your rants because it’s a waste of my time and you’re too goddamn stupid to understand anything anyone else has to say. The insult towards Thomas Sowell was the last straw.

    Oh dear! Are you going to challenge me to a duel or something?!

    I mean Jesus, you’re so fucking thick, look at the quote you think proves that Sowell thinks stimulus is a good thing!

    Ah no. It does demonstrate that it’s not as black and white as you and others keep trying to make it out to be, and Sowell acknowledges that.
    But then, as you’ve just tried to make out that I was making a black and white statement, I’m not sure why I would imagine you’d be able to comprehend…

    Hasn’t every single person here been telling you that..

    Telling me what?
    People tell me that the stimulus was a complete failure, but the research/evidence from the experts seems to suggest the opposite. I’m told people like Howell disagree, but I can’t find any detail of their analysis. Even Sowell concedes that pumping money in can ‘help many problems’.
    I assume you’re not just making it all up, so where do you get this stimulus-didn’t-work analysis from?

    :) Yeah, right…

    Exactly.

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  23. Iconoclast

    How about just not replacing it with the exact opposite?

    You’re kidding, right?

    Back when Bush was President and Congress was decidedly controlled by Republicans, Lee and many others, including myself, were quite critical of Bush, the Republicans and their out-of-control spending habits. Hell, so was the Electorate, as the 2006 mid-term elections clearly demonstrated.

    And obviously so was Obama, as his floor speech from 2006 clearly shows. But the point you seem intent on dodging is that Obama is in charge now, so he bears responsibility. And he deserves outright blame for accelerating the deficit spending and the accelerated borrowing and increase in debt. The USA lost its Triple-A credit rating on Obama’s watch.

    And, by all appearances, you are attempting to absolve Obama by blaming the GFC (for which you may, in fact, blame Bush). No, as Obama himself said in 2006, increasing the debt is a sign of failed leadership. He said it, not me.

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  24. CM

    You’re kidding, right?

    Nope. As explained earlier.
    Can you imagine if Obama had made the equivalent of Romney’s recent foreign goofs? The criticism here would be huge.

    Back when Bush was President and Congress was decidedly controlled by Republicans, Lee and many others, including myself, were quite critical of Bush, the Republicans and their out-of-control spending habits. Hell, so was the Electorate, as the 2006 mid-term elections clearly demonstrated.

    So what happened? Why is every little thing Obama’s fault now?

    And obviously so was Obama, as his floor speech from 2006 clearly shows. But the point you seem intent on dodging is that Obama is in charge now, so he bears responsibility. And he deserves outright blame for accelerating the deficit spending and the accelerated borrowing and increase in debt. The USA lost its Triple-A credit rating on Obama’s watch.

    1. You cannot take a speech on the economy from 2006 and apply it now, while the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression continues.
    2. I never said he didn’t bear responsibility. But how can anyone honestly ignore the gravity of the external factors at play here (the elephant in the room)? Or the fact that Obama followed the overwhelming prevailing economic formula for staving off the worst effects. Most people recognise that he inherited a poisonous chalice when it comes to the economy.

    In his formal budget message to Congress, the president said that – taken together with the deficit reduction agreement he signed last summer – his new budget proposals will cut the deficit by $4 trillion over the next decade. “This will put the country on a course to a level of deficits below 3 percent of GDP by the end of the decade, and will also allow us to stabilize the federal debt relative to the size of the economy,” he said.

    http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/Articles/2012/02/13/Obamas-2013-Budget-Forecasts-Increasing-Debt.aspx#page1

    And, by all appearances, you are attempting to absolve Obama by blaming the GFC (for which you may, in fact, blame Bush).

    No I don’t blame Bush for the GFC, and I never have. That would be silly.
    Acknowledging important relevant context isn’t “attempting to absolve” anyone of anything. If you can make a case that demonstrates that the GFC was irrelevant and Obama went against the prevailing economic opinion, then go right ahead.

    No, as Obama himself said in 2006, increasing the debt is a sign of failed leadership. He said it, not me.

    As I say, that’s clearly disingenous. Nearly as disingenous as quoting Bush on foreign policy before 9/11.

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  25. Iconoclast

    Nope.

    More’s the pity, then.

    Can you imagine if Obama had made the equivalent of Romney’s recent foreign goofs?

    What I or you can conjure up in our fertile imaginations is hardly relevant.

    So what happened? Why is every little thing Obama’s fault now?

    Talk about being disingenuous…I don’t recall claiming that “every little thing [is] Obama’s fault”.

    But he does make liberal (no pun intended) use of Executive Orders, as well as appointing numerous “Czars” (who are accountable to nobody but him, so much for Constitutional checks and balances), he does snub our allies while coddling our enemies, and he does blame everybody but himself with things don’t go his way. I’d be interested in your explanation as to how the GFC mitigates these specific observations.

    http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/Articles/2012/02/13/Obamas-2013-Budget-Forecasts-Increasing-Debt.aspx#page1

    Thanks for the link — let’s cite a few things you didn’t (bold emphasis added):

    But the administration’s outlook for debt reduction has deteriorated markedly since September, when Obama told Congress that his proposals would hold annual deficits well below $600 billion after next year and permit the debt held by outside investors to rise to $17.7 trillion by 2021, or 73 percent of overall GDP.

    According to the administration’s own fiscal 2013 budget tables, the new 10-year blueprint shows annual deficits exceeding $600 billion every year except 2018. Between 2013 and 2017, the government will rack up $3.4 trillion in additional deficit spending. And the portion of the debt held by outside investors – the so-called “public debt” – would grow to $18.7 trillion by 2021, or 76.5 percent of the economy, a full $1 trillion higher.


    “What the president is proposing does not change America’s debt course,” Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama, the ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, told MSNBC. “We’re on a debt course that’s going to bankrupt this country. Everybody is telling us that, Republicans, Democrats and economists. And the president’s budget may cut a little here but it increases otherwise. . . But when the whole ten years are over he’s not making any real cuts.”

    1. You cannot take a speech on the economy from 2006 and apply it now, while the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression continues.

    Oh, so spending our nation into bankruptcy and oblivion is now sound policy, thanks to the GFC? Getting is in hock up to our eyeballs to potentially hostile foreign powers is sound policy, thanks to the GFC?

    What you are telling us is that “normally”, spending your nation into bankruptcy would be considered a foolish thing to do, but because of your “elephant in the room”, it’s now wiser than Solomon to do exactly that.

    “Normally” (according to Obama himself), spending your country into massive debt indicates “failed leadership”, but thanks to the GFC, it somehow now represents the epitome of leadership…

    Most people recognise that he inherited a poisonous chalice when it comes to the economy.

    “Most people?” Care to provide some evidence of that?

    Even if so, that means little. No, what is important is how one deals with the issue. And this Administration is already on record; Rahm Emanuel has stated, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste…”

    What that means is, a crisis (like your precious GFC) is not something to be solved and mitigated. No, it’s something to be exploited, and that is just what this Administration appears to be doing.

    . If you can make a case that demonstrates that the GFC was irrelevant and Obama went against the prevailing economic opinion, then go right ahead.

    I’ve got a better idea: Why don’t you actually address the various issues raised in the video at the top of this thread instead of just barfing up the GFC as some sort of magic “Get Out of Jail Free” card for Obama?

    As I say, that’s clearly disingenous.

    No, what is “clearly disingenuous” is using the GFC as some sort of magic pill to shield a sitting President from legitimate specific criticisms, some of which have nothing to do with the economy.

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  26. CM

    What I or you can conjure up in our fertile imaginations is hardly relevant.

    Of course it’s relevant. I don’t think they were serious goofs at all, but they were goofs, and if Obama made them there would be a thread slamming him about it all.

    Talk about being disingenuous…I don’t recall claiming that “every little thing [is] Obama’s fault”.

    Fair enough. I shouldn’t have spoken in general terms. But the video and post leading us off here gets amazingly close to suggesting so.

    But he does make liberal (no pun intended) use of Executive Orders, as well as appointing numerous “Czars” (who are accountable to nobody but him, so much for Constitutional checks and balances),

    And I’m not saying there aren’t legitimate issues, and that those aren’t a couple of them. But if everything (or close to it) is his fault, then the ACTUAL ISSUES get hidden. People spend their time on nonsense.

    he does snub our allies while coddling our enemies,

    That’s highly debatable. Again, if Obama had gone to London and made a public comment about whether London was ready, people here would be lining up with ‘snub our enemies’ etc etc.
    Who has Obama coddled, and why isn’t it just an alternative approach to constant war-mongering/sabre-rattling?

    and he does blame everybody but himself with things don’t go his way.

    I’d have to see some examples. It could (easily) be that I agree.

    I’d be interested in your explanation as to how the GFC mitigates these specific observations.

    Come on. Look at my first post in this thread – GFC was in response to a specific quote.

    Oh, so spending our nation into bankruptcy and oblivion is now sound policy, thanks to the GFC?

    Countries go into debt during huge recessions. It’s nothing new, and doesn’t mean oblivion. The debt is forecast to reduce substantially if and when the economy picks up. The spending wasn’t permanent spending. George linked to the figures a week or two ago. It settles back down to Bush levels fairly quickly.
    You seem to have completely warped what I’ve said. I’m saying the GFC is the context within which spending over the last 4 years needs to be considered. Tax cuts made up 28% of the stimulus – do you consider that to be spending? It has the same effect with respect to the debt.

    Thanks for the link — let’s cite a few things you didn’t (bold emphasis added):

    Yep, saw all that. However the point I was responding to was “what happened to his promise in 2006″. Well, there was an example of an attempt to do just that. But as the economy isn’t improving sufficiently, the policy has clearly moved back to keep trying to get a recovery going. The debt may be a huge threat to future prosperity, but premature austerity is just as huge a threat to the recovery. But that doesn’t mean Obama isn’t in favour of a long-term debt solution. It’s disingenous to mangle it all together.
    Romney’s approach seems to be to pretend the GFC and huge recession didn’t happen, to roll back regulations to the Bush era, and to just keep doing the same things Bush did.

    Like I said, what you are telling us is that “normally”, spending your nation into bankruptcy would be considered a foolish thing to do, but because of your “elephant in the room”, it’s now wiser than Solomon to do exactly that.

    Ideology is doing the same thing no matter what the circumstances, or the results. Being pragmatic is dealing with the specific set of circumstances in front of you.

    Normally” (according to Obama himself), spending your country into massive debt indicates “failed leadership”, but thanks to the GFC, it somehow now represents the epitome of leadership…

    Oh. My. God.
    No, but spending more in a recession is neither unique or against predominant economic thought. Again, you’re taking part of a speech and applying it at a different time. It’s about as partisan a move as you can get. Again, it’s worse than applying Bush’s comments about nation building pre-9/11and then pointing to Iraq. It’s patently disingenous.

    “Most people?” Care to provide some evidence of that?

    That’s in dispute? Really?? Sheesh.
    From last month:

    Another set of numbers from our new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll: 60 percent say President Obama inherited the current economic conditions,

    http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/06/26/12422635-nbcwsj-poll-six-in-10-say-obama-inherited-current-economy?lite

    I’d love to see some polling which shows that most people think he inherited a decent or even average economy.

    Even if so, that means little.

    Only if you’re partisan and looking to blame Obama wherever and whenever possible. Context is usually quite important, and it is here.

    No, what is important is how one deals with the issue. And this Administration is already on record; Rahm Emanuel has stated, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste…”

    Wow now you’re right down at Alex’s level. When you start relying on distorting old quotes, you’ve essentially given up.
    http://www.factcheck.org/2011/01/bum-rap-for-rahm/

    What that means is, a crisis (like your precious GFC) is not something to be solved and mitigated. No, it’s something to be exploited, and that is just what this Administration appears to be doing.

    That’s a partisan political narrative. Again, it conveniently ignores that Obama was following the predominant economic prescription for such a crisis. And it was a global crisis, not mine.

    I’ve got a better idea:

    I’d rather read your case if you don’t mind. You’re putting up all the conclusions but I’d love to see the ‘working’ behind it all.

    Why don’t you actually address the various issues raised in the video at the top of this thread instead of just barfing up the GFC as some sort of magic “Get Out of Jail Free” card for Obama?

    Hahaha, nice. If we can’t even rationally discuss one issue, what is the point of me commenting on any of the other ones (notwithstanding that I DID comment on another one in my first post).
    To suggest I’m claiming the GFC as “some sort of magic “Get Out of Jail Free” card for Obama” when all I’ve done is suggest people acknowledge reality is absurd.

    No, what is “clearly disingenuous”

    No, your whole refusal to see what’s in front of you is clearly disingenous. If I promised to put the garbage out every week but then one week I was in hospital having an operation, I assume you’d ridicule me for not putting it out that week.

    is using the GFC as some sort of magic pill to shield a sitting President from legitimate specific criticisms, some of which have nothing to do with the economy.

    You should re-read the thread. I did no such thing. I’ve always acknowledged that people can and do have legitimate specific criticisms. I bet you’d struggle to find ANYONE that doesn’t have them. I responded to a specific part of what Rich said. Using something as a magic pill to shield a President from legitimate criticism would be just as silly as blaming Obama for the fact that the average American is “worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles”.

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  27. Xetrov

    In his formal budget message to Congress, the president said that – taken together with the deficit reduction agreement he signed last summer – his new budget proposals will cut the deficit by $4 trillion over the next decade. “This will put the country on a course to a level of deficits below 3 percent of GDP by the end of the decade, and will also allow us to stabilize the federal debt relative to the size of the economy,” he said.

    And everyone will get free puppies! And sunshine will pour down from my ass onto the whole world, curing cancer, and stopping global warming in a single sunshine filled fart.

    Thumb up 2

  28. Iconoclast

    Of course it’s relevant.

    Keep believing that if you wish, and I’ll stick to historical facts.

    I don’t think they were serious goofs at all, but they were goofs, and if Obama made them there would be a thread slamming him about it all.

    So what? Even if true, it’s still irrelevant.

    That’s highly debatable.

    No it isn’t. Obama did go on an apology tour and did bow before heads of state of non-friendly nations. Obama’s treatment of Israel has been deplorable. Obama has been essentially sucking up to the Muslim world.

    Come on. Look at my first post in this thread – GFC was in response to a specific quote.

    Yeah, the following:

    how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?

    You seem to be obsessing over the Stimulus, but that $16 trillion represents more that just the Stimulus — it represents the Administration’s ongoing policies. And the point you seem hell-bent on ignoring is that after that kind of expenditure, why are we still worse off than before?

    Someone who is sane would most likely conclude that that outrageous expenditure didn’t fix the problems it was allegedly supposed to fix.

    Countries go into debt during huge recessions. It’s nothing new, and doesn’t mean oblivion.

    You’re begging the question. Deficit spending is one thing, recklessness (and 16 TRILLION dollars of debt) is another thing entirely. Pretending that the latter isn’t an issue is itself reckless.

    European countries are indeed facing oblivion, and so will we if we don’t change course, sooner rather than later. What part of, “We’re on a debt course that’s going to bankrupt this country. Everybody is telling us that, Republicans, Democrats and economists”, do you not comprehend?

    You seem to have completely warped what I’ve said.

    Nonsense. Like I said, you seem obsessed over the Stimulus, while I and the original video are discussing Obama’s overall performance.

    You can trot out “a consensus” of economists who claim that “the Stimulus worked” until the universe burns out, but there were plenty of economists who were against it from the beginning, and plenty who claim it failed.

    Economists against the Stimulus

    Martin Feldstein, whose support last October for a fiscal stimulus is the reed upon which journalists justify their claims about “economists across the political spectrum,” now calls this stimulus bill “an $800 billion mistake.”

    Why the Stimulus Failed

    The problem is that all but the most reductionist Keynesians of the Paul Krugman school believe it matters what the government spends money on. A dollar that eventually will be taken out of the private economy through borrowing or higher taxes to fund pointlessly expensive projects…is not the way to nurture a recovery.

    Economists: The stimulus didn’t help

    The recovery is picking up steam as employers boost payrolls, but economists think the government’s stimulus package and jobs bill had little to do with the rebound, according to a survey released Monday.

    A Verdict on Obama’s “Stimulus” Plan

    Our benchmark results suggest that the ARRA created/saved approximately 450 thousand state and local government jobs and destroyed/forestalled roughly one million private sector jobs.

    And even if you can assemble a convincing argument that the Stimulus “worked”, so what? How do we know that a different approach would not have worked better? How do we know that, for example, focusing on private sector job creation and investment wouldn’t have produced more jobs than simple government expansion could?

    How do we know that focusing on getting the government off the backs of small business, instead of obsessing over a national health care bill, wouldn’t have caused a stronger recovery than the one we allegedly had or are having?

    Romney’s approach seems to be to pretend the GFC and huge recession didn’t happen, to roll back regulations to the Bush era, and to just keep doing the same things Bush did.

    Well, some of the things that “Bush did” were to increase government spending and increase our debt. Some would argue that that is what got us into this mess in the first place. As I’ve stated elsewhere, the electorate got fed up with Republicans acting like Democrats when it came to government spending, government expansion and increasing debt.

    Ideology is doing the same thing no matter what the circumstances, or the results.

    Like what Obama is doing…

    Again, you’re taking part of a speech and applying it at a different time.

    Yeah, like when we are arguably seeing the results of prior reckless government meddling, deficit spending and debt increase…

    It’s about as partisan a move as you can get.

    No, what’s partisan is defending Obama at all costs.

    Again, it’s worse than applying Bush’s comments about nation building pre-9/11and then pointing to Iraq.

    “Worse than…”?? Funny, just a few days ago you said:

    Nearly as disingenous as quoting Bush on foreign policy before 9/11.

    CM, July 30, 2012 5:15 pm at 5:15 pm (UTC -4)

    “Nearly” —> “worse”.

    Well, which is it? Clearly you are arguing from emotion rather than fact…

    That’s in dispute? Really?? Sheesh

    You used the specific rhetoric, “poisonous chalice”, which implies some level of hopelessness. Ironic, given the insipid “Hope and Change” mantra. In truth, we got neither. Few would disagree that a President inherits the world situation from his successor. I mean, that would almost qualify as a tautology.

    I’d love to see some polling which shows that most people think he inherited a decent or even average economy.

    Again, begging the question, and again, the issue is how one responds to a challenge, not whether a challenge exists.

    Only if you’re partisan and looking to blame Obama wherever and whenever possible.

    The latter doesn’t require the former. As President, he is to blame for many things, especially things he himself said or did.

    Wow now you’re right down at Alex’s level. When you start relying on distorting old quotes, you’ve essentially given up.

    Nonsense. A high-ranking member of Obama’s Administration said what he said, and it means what it means. There is no reason not to consider it representative of the Administrating’s overall attitude. Having no valid response other than proclaiming victory indicates that you have essentially given up.

    I’d rather read your case if you don’t mind

    I have already explained that I and the video above are discussing Obama’s overall performance, while you seem obsessed with the Stimulus.

    . If we can’t even rationally discuss one issue…

    Well, maybe you can’t, but I’m not having any trouble at all…

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  29. Iconoclast

    Obama will cut deficit in half FEB 2009

    Was he simply lying to us? Surely he was aware of the GFC once he became President, no?

    Or am I taking things “out of context” again? Or otherwise “misapplying” what Obama actually said?

    To suggest I’m claiming the GFC as “some sort of magic ‘Get Out of Jail Free’ card for Obama” when all I’ve done is suggest people acknowledge reality is absurd.

    Why don’t you “acknowledge reality” yourself? Such as the reality that the Stimulus isn’t all that’s being discussed in the video, and isn’t the only contributor to the $16 Trillion debt? Hell, the Stimulus is only discussed tangentially, if at all, in the video. Given this, you trying to let Obama off the hook via the GFC is exactly what appears to be happening. The video talks about Executive Orders, foreign policy, green energy and other stuff, none of which is mitigated by the GFC, so bringing it up and follwing up with, “how responsible is Obama for that?” would strike some as a complete non sequitur.

    Yes, poor, poor Obama inherited a bad economic situation — we all get that, whether you care to believe it or not. Many of us saw the conflagration coming during the Bush Administration, with the increased debt, excessive spending, the housing bubble, all of it. We pretty much know what Obama inherited, we read the news. But again, there is no reason to believe that focusing on the health care bill instead of the economy was the proper course, or increasing regulations on small businesses, or constantly threatening to raise taxes, or inciting class warfare, or increasing our debt at a rate that far surpassed that of Bush and the RINO Republicans, or “investing” taxpayer money in green energy boondoggles (that ultimately went belly up anyway…). Again, what matters is how one deals with a crisis, not whether one exists. Furthermore, those things I mentioned are clearly Obama’s responsibility, and there is no reason to believe they left us better off than four years ago.

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  30. CM

    No it isn’t. Obama did go on an apology tour and did bow before heads of state of non-friendly nations. Obama’s treatment of Israel has been deplorable. Obama has been essentially sucking up to the Muslim world.

    That’s very clearly your opinion. It’s not fact. Of course it’s ‘highly debatable’. Don’t be absurd.

    Yeah, the following:

    Yeah. Exactly. You’re trying to dishonestly pretend I’m using the GFC to excuse anything and everything.

    You seem to be obsessing over the Stimulus,

    That’s the main complaint in terms of spending since Obama has been President. So yeah, it’s worth mentioning.

    but that $16 trillion represents more that just the Stimulus — it represents the Administration’s ongoing policies.

    Much more accurately it represents the American Government’s ongoing policies. How much of it was new spending (outside the stimulus and non-discretionary)?

    And the point you seem hell-bent on ignoring is that after that kind of expenditure, why are we still worse off than before?

    I didn’t ignore it at all. I specifically addressed it. How much worse shape would the economy be in if that kind of expenditure didn’t happen?
    However that’s not quite accurate. GDP is now above where it was before the GFC kicked in. http://content.ksg.harvard.edu/blog/jeff_frankels_weblog/2012/01/27/gdp-reattains-pre-recession-peak/
    Most people are no better off though because wages haven’t increased. Business owners are not spending on labor. (The level of investment in labor has been steadily declining since about 1980). Real wages have been stagnating or falling since about the same time. The boom times were fake.

    Someone who is sane would most likely conclude that that outrageous expenditure didn’t fix the problems it was allegedly supposed to fix.

    No, someone considering it rationally and logically would look to economic analyses, most of which say the stimulus saved or created jobs. The problems run far deeper than the amount of money being spent within a Presidential term.

    Deficit spending is one thing, recklessness (and 16 TRILLION dollars of debt) is another thing entirely. Pretending that the latter isn’t an issue is itself reckless.

    You’d need to demonstrate why the spending meets the definition of ‘reckless’. There are a lot of factors other than just a raw dollar value that need to be considered (otherwise it’s just binary ideology). Again, George in another thread a couple of weeks back provided the US Govt data which showed the deficit being reduced substantially over the next 4 years or so. Back to around the Bush level.

    Nonsense.

    I didn’t say “spending our nation into bankruptcy and oblivion is now sound policy, thanks to the GFC”, so yes you did warp it.

    Like I said, you seem obsessed over the Stimulus, while I and the original video are discussing Obama’s overall performance.

    Fucking hell man. I made a specific comment about one part of what Rich said. People picked it up and ran with it. How THE FUCK does that then translates into me being “obsessed over the Stimulus”? Honestly, take a step back.

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  31. CM

    You can trot out “a consensus” of economists who claim that “the Stimulus worked” until the universe burns out, but there were plenty of economists who were against it from the beginning, and plenty who claim it failed.

    Sure, you’ll always be able to find an expert (or group of experts) to support anything. But the prevailing economic advice, both in the US and elsewhere, at the time the GFC hit, was that stimulus spending (Government temporarly propping up the economy while the private sector recovered) was the best way to get bang for your buck.

    Economists against the Stimulus

    Already discussed.

    Economists: The stimulus didn’t help

    Wow, that’s extremely misleading (did you not read it?). The ‘economists’ were only talking about whether additional people were employed at their place of employment. There is no evidence that they were asked their wider opinion about anything outside their place of employment.

    Whereas:

    The truth is, both studies of the type Barro prefers, and studies using models, which he criticizes, have been conducted to determine the effect of the stimulus on employment and output. Of the nine studies I’ve found, six find that the stimulus had a significant, positive effect on employment and growth, and three find that the effect was either quite small or impossible to detect. Five studies use econometric ”experiments,” which attempt to, as Barro encourages, sort out the effect of the stimulus from other factors using empirical data. Four use modeling instead.

    A Verdict on Obama’s “Stimulus” Plan

    Misreported. I read the report at the time and discussed it here.

    And even if you can assemble a convincing argument that the Stimulus “worked”, so what? How do we know that a different approach would not have worked better?

    We don’t. But nobody has yet come up with anything credible. When the private sector takes a huge dive, and the Government isn’t stepping in to try and stem the worst of the bleeding, what other approach is there? The stimulus was already comprised of 28% tax cuts. It wasn’t all Government spending by a long shot.

    How do we know that, for example, focusing on private sector job creation and investment wouldn’t have produced more jobs than simple government expansion could?

    That sounds suspiciously like magic. What are these policies? Can you be specific?

    How do we know that focusing on getting the government off the backs of small business, instead of obsessing over a national health care bill, wouldn’t have caused a stronger recovery than the one we allegedly had or are having?

    I guess you’d need to detail what you mean by “getting off the backs”. For a start, a decrease in demand means fewer jobs, no matter whether it’s slightly easier to hire someone in theory. We’re talking about a specific crisis.

    Well, some of the things that “Bush did” were to increase government spending and increase our debt. Some would argue that that is what got us into this mess in the first place. As I’ve stated elsewhere, the electorate got fed up with Republicans acting like Democrats when it came to government spending, government expansion and increasing debt.

    Have you seen what Romney’s plans will do to the deficit? And the Republicans will support it. If Obama is elected he’ll face ongoing opposition from Republicans, even if it’s better for the deficit. The Republicans have backed themselves into this crazy ideological corner.

    Like what Obama is doing…

    You’d have to explain with some examples. Above anything else, Obama seems to have operated pragmatically on most issues, including the economy. Romney seems to be advocating standard economic ideology irrespective of what is actually appening. If you disagree, I’d certainly be interested in the case for the opposite.

    Yeah, like when we are arguably seeing the results of prior reckless government meddling, deficit spending and debt increase…

    The deficit has grown significantly because of specific incidents (tax cuts, wars, additional spending to combat the worst effects of the GFC). If the economy continues to recover then spending will decrease and revenue will increase). That’s why the projected deficit drops substantially.

    No, what’s partisan is defending Obama at all costs.

    Pushing back against your ridiculous claim (that I suggested bankrupting a country was the epitome of leadership) isn’t even remotely defending Obama at all costs.

    “Nearly” —> “worse”.

    Well, which is it? Clearly you are arguing from emotion rather than fact…

    LOL. Now you’re descending into farce. If that’s what you’re going to use against me you must be extremely desparate.
    Do you see the inherent problem of using an example of me defending Bush as part of your evidence that I’m here to defend Obama at all costs?

    You used the specific rhetoric, “poisonous chalice”, which implies some level of hopelessness. Ironic, given the insipid “Hope and Change” mantra. In truth, we got neither. Few would disagree that a President inherits the world situation from his successor. I mean, that would almost qualify as a tautology.

    You’re now going to pick over the semantics of the use of a phrase? Wow, that’s woeful. Anyone rational would concede, using whatever terminology doesn’t lose you your Party Card, that the economy he inherited was dire. Poisonous chalice seems to fit, but if you want to pick a similar description that suits you better, be my guest.
    There is no irony, as ‘Hope and Change’ wasn’t about instantly repairing the econmy with a magic wand.

    Again, begging the question, and again, the issue is how one responds to a challenge, not whether a challenge exists.

    WTF? YOU were the one disputing that most people would agree. Sheesh man.

    The latter doesn’t require the former. As President, he is to blame for many things, especially things he himself said or did.

    Indeed. But simplistic analysis usually leads to apportioning blame that isn’t accurate. Saying “how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?” with a strong implication that it’s the fault of Obama is such simplistic analysis.

    Nonsense. A high-ranking member of Obama’s Administration said what he said, and it means what it means. There is no reason not to consider it representative of the Administrating’s overall attitude.

    Wow, yeah let’s just ignore context everywhere always then. Jesus Christ. How did that hook, line and sinker feel as you swallowed it?

    Having no valid response other than proclaiming victory indicates that you have essentially given up.

    Where on earth did I “claim victory”?

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  32. CM

    Was he simply lying to us? Surely he was aware of the GFC once he became President, no?

    Obama was specifically asked about the promise in an interview in February 2012 with Atlanta’s WAGA-TV. (His campaign pointed us to those comments when we asked for response.) He said he wasn’t able to keep the promise because the economic downturn was much more severe than was commonly understood in 2009.

    “Well, we’re not there because this recession turned out to be a lot deeper than any of us realized. Everybody who is out there back in 2009, if you look back at what their estimates were in terms of how many jobs had been lost, how bad the economy had contracted when I took office, everybody underestimated it. People thought that the economy contracted 3 percent. It turns out it contracted close to 9 percent. …

    “So, the die had been cast, but a lot of us didn’t understand at that point how bad it was going to get. That increases the deficit because less tax revenues come in, and it means that more people are getting unemployment insurance, we’re helping states more so they don’t lay off teachers, etc. The key, though, is we’re setting ourselves on a path where we can get our debt under control.

    “The most important thing we can do, though, to reduce our debt is to make sure that we continue growing this economy. We’ve seen some recent good news about unemployment numbers coming down, more jobs being created. We’ve got to to maintain that momentum even as we make some tough choices in terms of government spending.”

    http://www.politifact.com/florida/statements/2012/mar/08/lenny-curry/obama-promised-cut-deficit-half-end-his-first-term/

    It’s certainly true that he didn’t. But it’s not a lie if it was based on the best estimates of the time. You do understand the difference right?

    Or am I taking things “out of context” again? Or otherwise “misapplying” what Obama actually said?

    Well you’ve asking whether it was a lie. If what Obama says is correct, it wasn’t a lie.
    You’re not wrong that a promise was broken though. That’s the simplistic analysis.

    Why don’t you “acknowledge reality” yourself? Such as the reality that the Stimulus isn’t all that’s being discussed in the video, and isn’t the only contributor to the $16 Trillion debt?

    That’s hilarious. We started out with an accusation that people aren’t better off and you have a deficit of $16 trllion because of Obama. I added a comment suggesting that it would probably be a little more accurate to factor in the GFC if you’re going to apportion blame about those things. I added a big contributing factor, and yet now you’re having a go at me for not providing……contributing factors. Where is your abuse for those who just blamed Obama and provided no other contributing factors whatsoever?
    WTF did anyone claim the stimulus is the ONLY contributing factor? Fucking hell. You’re impossible.

    Hell, the Stimulus is only discussed tangentially, if at all, in the video.

    You’re implying it’s irrelevant. Even though earlier you said the Govt could have tried an alternative theory, and trying to start making an argument that the Stimulus didn’t work. If it didn’t work, would that not contribute to people not getting ahead, and the deficit? You can’t have it both ways.
    It IS relevant, and it’s one of the major economic complaints of the right for the last 3.5 years. Here and elsewhere.

    Given this, you trying to let Obama off the hook via the GFC is exactly what appears to be happening.

    Well then you’re not reading, or understanding, it properly.

    The video talks about Executive Orders, foreign policy, green energy and other stuff, none of which is mitigated by the GFC, so bringing it up and follwing up with, “how responsible is Obama for that?” would strike some as a complete non sequitur.

    Where did I do that?
    Again, you seem to have missed the fundamental point that I responded to a specific quote.
    Your whole claim is a complete non sequitur.

    Yes, poor, poor Obama inherited a bad economic situation — we all get that, whether you care to believe it or not.

    Who has said “poor poor Obama”. He stood for election. He chose to take the challenge on.
    It’s hard to believe though, I’ve only seen evidence to the contrary. This thread being a prime example.

    But again, there is no reason to believe that focusing on the health care bill instead of the economy was the proper course,

    That’s one hell of a stretch. What evidence do you have that the economy was ignored at the expense of healthcare? Is an Administration only able to concentrate on one area per term? It’s not as though Obama etc are sitting down pulling economic levers left right and centre 24 hours a day.

    or increasing regulations on small businesses,

    Something we could look at in detail. There are examples which don’t support that conclusion.
    http://money.cnn.com/2012/05/07/smallbusiness/Romney-Obama-Small-Biz/index.htm
    But irrespective of what has actually happened, I’m a firm supporter of reducing regulations for small business. I’m pleased we have few regulations here.

    or constantly threatening to raise taxes,

    As opposed to trying to sneak tax increases through, having not mentioned them before?

    or inciting class warfare,

    Who doesn’t?

    or increasing our debt at a rate that far surpassed that of Bush and the RINO Republicans,

    Wow, we’ve just gone full circle. Again, how about some context?

    or “investing” taxpayer money in green energy boondoggles (that ultimately went belly up anyway…).

    Again, that would be a simplistic conclusion based on your politics.

    In reality-land:

    An independent program review headed by Herbert Allison, a former Wall Street financier, reported that the loan portfolio is performing well, with the great majority of the companies on track to repay their loans on schedule along with some $8 billion in interest.

    Reaching similar conclusions, the news service Bloomberg Government, found that 87% of the program’s loans are low-risk. Meanwhile, the news site CleanTechnica observed that, with only 1.4% of its investments in “losers,” the program has a far better record than the private venture capital markets.

    Overall, the program has spurred $40 billion of investments in energy projects over the past five years, while supporting more than 60,000 American jobs.

    Again, what matters is how one deals with a crisis, not whether one exists.

    What matters is dealing with reality, not partisan silliness which ignore reality in favour of pushing an agenda. The above (green energy investment ‘failure’) is a clear example.

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  33. Iconoclast

    That’s very clearly your opinion.

    Based on facts.

    You’re trying to dishonestly pretend I’m using the GFC to excuse anything and everything.

    I’m telling you how things appear — no pretense involved, no pretense needed.

    …it’s worth mentioning.

    I never claimed otherwise, but then “obsession” and “mentioning” are not the same. You appear to be “warping” what I said.

    How much worse shape would the economy be in if that kind of expenditure didn’t happen?

    If you are honest, you would acknowledge that there is no real way of knowing. Educated guesses are the best we can do.

    That said, what we were told is that, without the stimulus, unemployment would go as high as 9% (horror of horrors!), so we absolutely NEED this bill to pass, so we can keep unemployment at 8% or below.

    Of course, what actually happened is that the bill passed, got signed into law, and unemployment shot up to over ten percent, then settled down to the mid-to-low nines and stayed there over a year. It only got down to eight in the past few months. So, by that metric, it clearly failed, regardless of what the ivory-tower egghead proclaim…

    You’d need to demonstrate why the spending meets the definition of ‘reckless’.

    I doubt that it’s possible to “demonstrate” anything to your personal satisfaction, but S & P did downgrade the USA’s credit rating, on Obama’s watch.

    I didn’t say “spending our nation into bankruptcy and oblivion is now sound policy, thanks to the GFC”, so yes you did warp it.

    And I didn’t say that you uttered that exact statement, but instead asked a question to confirm what your statements did indeed imply. So I didn’t “warp” anything.

    How THE FUCK does that then translates into me being “obsessed over the Stimulus”?

    There you go again. I did say that making “a specific comment about one part of what Rich said” “translated” into anything. That’s just you warping things again.

    Sure, you’ll always be able to find an expert (or group of experts) to support anything

    Precisely.

    When the private sector takes a huge dive, and the Government isn’t stepping in to try and stem the worst of the bleeding, what other approach is there?

    Doing nothing, which was the policy for decades prior to The New Deal. Hell, as has been implied from earlier discussions, it was arguably Government meddling in the markets that lead to this problem in the first place. And one can argue that FDR’s meddling prolonged the Great Depression rather that solved it.

    I guess you’d need to detail what you mean by “getting off the backs”.

    That would simply translate into less regulation and red tape. A small business shouldn’t be required to hire a team of lawyers to make sure that aren’t breaking some obscure bureaucratic regulation.

    Pushing back against your ridiculous claim (that I suggested bankrupting a country was the epitome of leadership) isn’t even remotely defending Obama at all costs.

    Perhaps, but three verbose postings could give that appearance…

    …you must be extremely desparate.

    I’m simply observing with amusement. If you want to call that “desperation”, be my guest.

    Saying “how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?” with a strong implication that it’s the fault of Obama is such simplistic analysis.

    Not necessarily. It could simply be a reflection of buyer’s remorse, not “economic analysis”. After all, the electorate was sold this mythical demigod of a politician, who actually did say a bunch of hyperbole about “looking back and saying, ‘this is the moment the rising of the oceans slowed and the planet began to heal'”, yadda yadda yadda, how he would be the great uniter, post partisan, the world would respect us again, no more war, no more secret, closed door dealings, transparency, blah blah blah.

    It would just be a “totally awesome” four years, man!

    The GFC wasn’t Obama’s fault (and nobody ever said it was), but the hyperbole from his campaign certainly was, and his subsequent behavior as President certainly is.

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  34. Iconoclast

    In reality-land:

    Wow! Just…wow…

    I mean, talk about “misleading” and “being desperate” and what not. The article you cited is talking about a program that precedes the Obama Administration. Paragraph 5 clearly states that the program under discussion was started by President Bush.

    And I can cite a different article which clearly says that Obama’s program is clearly failing.

    Ener1 joins two other failed green companies — Solyndra and Beacon Power — that took $571 million in taxpayer subsidies down with them.

    …solar, wind and electric cars are hardly new technologies — electric cars were being sold back in the late 1800s.

    Indeed, the only thing new here is Obama’s naivete about their potential, and his eagerness to waste so much taxpayer money pushing them.

    Thumb up 1

  35. CM

    Not necessarily. It could simply be a reflection of buyer’s remorse, not “economic analysis”. After all, the electorate was sold this mythical demigod of a politician, who actually did say a bunch of hyperbole about “looking back and saying, ‘this is the moment the rising of the oceans slowed and the planet began to heal’”, yadda yadda yadda, how he would be the great uniter, post partisan, the world would respect us again, no more war, no more secret, closed door dealings, transparency, blah blah blah.

    It would just be a “totally awesome” four years, man!

    The GFC wasn’t Obama’s fault (and nobody ever said it was), but the hyperbole from his campaign certainly was, and his subsequent behavior as President certainly is.

    I love this whole schtik where you (and not just you) pretend to have bought into the whole “mythical demigod of a politician” so that you can then pretend to have been so crushingly disappointed. It’s cute.

    The rest of your post is essentially just agreeing that you misrepresented what I said. At least you’re admitting it.

    Thumb up 0

  36. CM

    I mean, talk about “misleading” and “being desperate” and what not. The article you cited is talking about a program that precedes the Obama Administration. Paragraph 5 clearly states that the program under discussion was started by President Bush.

    The article I linked to and quoted from is clearly about the U.S. Department of Energy’s loan guarantee program. It says so in the first sentence, so there’s nothing misleading there. That is virtually always the program under attack here and at other places. It’s Solyndra, Solyndra, Solyndra, Solyndra, Solyndra, Solyndra, Solyndra. The history of that programme has been well established, here and elsewhere. I’m surprised that it’s news to you.
    I assumed that’s what you were referring to when you said:

    or “investing” taxpayer money in green energy boondoggles (that ultimately went belly up anyway…).

    As quoted and outlined in that article:

    …projects representing about 98 percent of the program’s funding have been successful, especially solar power plants that aren’t vulnerable to the volatile global economy. Overall, the program has spurred $40 billion of investments in energy projects over the past five years, while supporting more than 60,000 American jobs.

    Clearly that’s the opposite of what you claimed.

    Your piece is obviously going a lot wider than the ridiculous political obsession with Solyndra. But it’s still horribly biased. It’s a narrative that completely ignores the successes. It only mentions negative aspects and makes conclusions based on those. That’s not any sort of objective assessment.

    E.g. do they factor in things like this?:

    the American West leads the way in construction of clean and renewable electricity projects on the ground, spurred forward by policies including state renewable electricity standards and government investments in clean technologies. A recent Bureau of Labor Statistics study reflects this success, determining that in 2010, “green goods and services” accounted for:

    49,717 jobs in Arizona
    338,445 jobs in California
    72,452 jobs in Colorado
    17,254 jobs in Nevada
    21,267 jobs in New Mexico
    27,948 jobs in Utah

    This comes to 527,083 jobs altogether in these six states.

    http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2012/08/06/644271/the-vast-potential-for-renewable-energy-in-the-american-west/

    The campaign against renewable energy is well and truly kicking off. Must be election coming up or something….

    The Sierra Club summed up the attacks this way:

    It is a testament to the success and rapid growth of clean-energy resources that they are now regarded as enough of a threat to draw fire from some of the largest, most powerful corporations on the planet. But with this rising status, there comes a heightened degree of difficulty that the renewable and efficiency companies — as well as advocates for their products as an environmental solution — must both recognize and contend with. The Koch brothers, Exxon Mobil, Peabody Energy, and others are playing for keeps. They have unlimited resources and we have documented that they are committing them to undermining clean energy. We clearly face a dog-eat-dog environment and must respond with as much vigor and aggressiveness as those who would see wind, solar, geothermal, and other technologies fade into the sunset — a product of a brief period in American economic history when the competitive environment was a friendly place for clean energy.

    Ambitious efforts to change the political landscape to fit a certain set of interests are very unlikely to happen on a shoestring. Most of the activities described in this report have not taken place overnight, nor have they happened by accident. Hours of work and dedicated individuals have collaborated to build a meaningful opposition to renewable energy, whether through the previously discussed “think tanks,” “citizens groups,” or political contributions. These efforts have also required a significant amount of funding.

    http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2012/08/03/628601/can-clean-energy-strike-back-against-the-growing-smear-campaign/

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  37. richtaylor365 *

    I love this whole schtik where you (and not just you) pretend to have bought into the whole “mythical demigod of a politician” so that you can then pretend to have been so crushingly disappointed. It’s cute.

    Holy smokes CM, have you forgotten this?

    I know some here rag on you for being a foreigner, thus, unsuitable to comment on our politics and you know I have defended you on this front, but you are REALLY delusional if you think this attitude, this worship is not prevalent. I think this is one area where not being American, not seeing what we see every single day in the media, on TV, you are missing the mountain of evidence that shows adulation beyond what we have ever seen before.

    Thumb up 1

  38. Iconoclast

    I love this whole schtik where you (and not just you) pretend to have bought into the whole “mythical demigod of a politician” so that you can then pretend to have been so crushingly disappointed.

    #1. I personally never “bought into it”.

    #2. There is no pretense — he was packaged as I described, and yes, many people did indeed “buy into it”. But some of us, being cynical, saw the man as an empty suit. I, for one, simply underestimated the damage he would do. My only disappointment was in our electorate for putting this guy in the Oval Office.

    Rich is right. You are an outsider and therefore are blissfully ignorant of the situation. Oprah Winfrey, a well-known celebrity talk-show host, did refer to him as “the One”. Chris Matthews, a(n alleged) journalist, did indeed claim that a “tingle” ran up his leg being in Obama’s presence. During the campaign, the View, a daytime talk show featuring Barbara Walters and Whoopi Goldberg, raked McCain over the coals when he was on their show, and embarrassingly gushed over Obama when he was on the show. One of the women on the show actually told Obama that he was “sexy”, right there on the air.

    Bernard Goldberg, a journalist and author, wrote a book on the whole circus, titled, A Slobbering Love Affair, the byline of which reads, “The True (and Pathetic) Story of the Torrid Romance Between Barack Obama and the Mainstream Media.” There were creepy videos of children chanting his name. The list goes on and on, ad nauseam, but I doubt it would ever be enough to convince you, your being so “objective” and all…

    It’s cute.

    No, what’s “cute” is your pretense to objectivity. No, not really. “Disturbing” is more accurate.

    The rest of your post is essentially just agreeing that you misrepresented what I said. At least you’re admitting it.

    There you go again, proclaiming “victory” and putting words in my mouth (or is it “warping what I said”??). Well, keep telling yourself whatever you need to tell yourself; it’s of no consequence, ultimately.

    The article I linked to and quoted from is clearly about the U.S. Department of Energy’s loan guarantee program.

    Which was started by George W. Bush. It says so in the first sentence of paragraph 5.

    It says so in the first sentence, so there’s nothing misleading there.

    It is indeed misleading to use that article to represent Obama’s record.

    I assumed that’s what you were referring to when you said:

    You can assume anything you wish, but you know what they say about people who assume…

    . But it’s still horribly biased.

    Investors.com? Well, of course it is. You disagree with it, after all, and, as we all know, only you are the objective one…

    E.g. do they factor in things like this?:

    Think Progress? Talk about biased, it’s evident just by looking at the page you linked. Even at that, the article is primarily discussing the potential of specific western states’ green energy initiatives. It isn’t claiming success for Obama’s “investments” necessarily.

    But, if you want to get into a url pissing contest, I can always counter with Professor Obama’s Investing 101 and Government Investments In Green Technology: A Scorecard, but since they show the dismal failure of Obama’s “investments”, you will no doubt dismiss them as “biased”, along with this Op-Ed piece titled, “Forget Bain — Obama’s public-equity record is the real scandal”

    You see, it isn’t necessarily the program that’s at fault, it’s the funding decisions made by the Investor-in-Chief.

    Thumb up 2

  39. CM

    Holy smokes CM, have you forgotten this?

    But I’m not talking about idiots like that who got suckered into the hoopla. I was talking about what you said here in your opening post. But Iconoclast yet again decided to misrepresent what I said.
    For you it’s not a matter of “buyer’s remorse”. You didn’t “buy” in the first place.
    People like that are clearly idiots. They’re gonna be shocked that everyone in America isn’t now rich. But are you? No, of course not.

    Thumb up 0

  40. CM

    #1. I personally never “bought into it”.

    Did you see the word ‘pretend’? For fuck’s sake.

    I’m finished with this abysmal attempt at reasonable discussion. You’ve clearly given up even pretending to try.

    Thumb up 0

  41. richtaylor365 *

    There was a piece in the WSJ this morning that addressed the stimulus and it’s failure, here is the soup bone quote:

    It worked miserably, as indicated by the table nearby, which shows increases in government spending from 2007 to 2009 and subsequent changes in GDP growth rates. Of the 34 Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development nations, those with the largest spending spurts from 2007 to 2009 saw the least growth in GDP rates before and after the stimulus.

    I guess you could say that Laffer does not know what he is talking about, but I don’t know how you dispute 34 tests with 34 fails, maybe that 35th will be different.

    Thumb up 2

  42. richtaylor365 *

    But I’m not talking about idiots like that who got suckered into the hoopla.

    I guess you still can’t accept the fact that there were millions of “suckers” like this that bought in to the hoopla. That’s what I’ve been trying to tell you.

    Thumb up 2

  43. Iconoclast

    Did you see the word ‘pretend’?

    Yeah, what about it? It doesn’t apply to me. Why is that so difficult to grasp?

    I’m finished with this abysmal attempt at reasonable discussion. You’ve clearly given up even pretending to try.

    This coming from someone who repeatedly proclaims victory and puts words in the mouths of his opponents. Priceless.

    Thumb up 2

  44. Iconoclast

    But I’m not talking about idiots like that who got suckered into the hoopla. I was talking about what you said here in your opening post. But Iconoclast yet again decided to misrepresent what I said.
    For you it’s not a matter of “buyer’s remorse”. You didn’t “buy” in the first place.

    No, but the gal in the video apparently did, and Rich was simply reiterating the sentiment expressed in the video. At least such is certainly implied when you consider the context:

    It was not suppose to turn out this way. For a man that had such potential, such vision, and such a bullet proof super majority in both houses, how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?

    I mean, geez, it almost looks like you”re taking Rich’s statement out of context and misrepresenting it.

    But you would never do anything like that, would you?

    Thumb up 3

  45. CM

    I guess you could say that Laffer does not know what he is talking about, but I don’t know how you dispute 34 tests with 34 fails, maybe that 35th will be different.

    That’s far from “34 tests with 34 fails”. Not even Laffer makes such an extremist claim.

    Pointing to slow GDP growth and saying the stimulus failed assumes correlation implies causation, which it does not. The right question is what would growth have been in the absence of stimulus – a much more difficult question to answer.

    I guess you still can’t accept the fact that there were millions of “suckers” like this that bought in to the hoopla. That’s what I’ve been trying to tell you.

    I can accept it fine. I never disputed it (no idea why you keep suggesting I did/have).
    But you’re not one of them. THAT IS THE POINT.
    Again, I added a suggestion for one major reason why the US is “worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?” (Even though you’re not worse off as a country, GDP is now ahead of where it was before the crash, let alone where it was when Obama took charge). And then everyone got their knickers in a tangle like I’d mentioned Voldemort. And then Iconoclast comes in, in an apparent attempt to misrepresent for a gold medal. Fucking ridiculous. No wonder your political discourse is so fucked.

    Thumb up 0

  46. CM

    From the comments associated with the Laffer piece:

    WHAT A HUGE DISTORTION OF INFORMATION!
    Please take a relook at the data after reading this:
    This data shows change in governemt SPENDING AS PERCENT OF GDP, and change of REAL GDP GROWTH. Both of these from the same time period 2007-2009. The argument being made that as the SPENDING AS A PERCENT OF GDP increases so does the REAL GDP GROWTH decrease.
    1. The correlation show between these numbers are almost completely mathmatical. The arguement being made is misleading becasue the oppisite of the arguement is actually a mathimatical fact: As GDP decreases so does the percnet of spending of GDP increase, all else being equal. Let me explain this distortion by using an example: If you spend $40 and have a REAL GDP of $100 then you SPEND 40 PERCENT OF GDP — If you spend the exact same amount of $40 but your real GDP decreses by 35.5%(Estonia) to a REAL GDP of $64.5 then you now SPEND AS A PERCENT OF GDP 62 PERCENT ($40/$64.5). An increase of 22% WITHOUT CHANGING SPENDING a penny. With a decrease in GDP, the percnet of GDP you spend increases thus giving the apearacne of ‘stimulus’ without actual having to spend more.
    2. Actual stimulas programs such as the Obama stimulas program where not created until 2009 as a result of the 07′-09′ reccession. This data however influences you to look at what actually happened durning the finanical crisis (CHANGE IN REAL GDP FROM 2006-07 TO 2008-09) as the results of Stimulus, even though stimulas was not passed until 2009. This gives the perception that a person went to get their car fixed and it broke down after the repair BUT the reality is the car broke down FIRST then it was taken to get repaired. If your going to measure the impact of ‘stimulus’, you don’t get to measure what lead to it, you have to study the results of the following years. Why would they use this data? Because it fits their narrative and the actual results are not all that bad compared to the amount they actually used for stimulus.
    Take a look at the data again..

    The results of stimulus are actualy hard to determine. The question becomes, how far we would have otherwise continued to go in the wrong direction? As far as the Obama stimulus package they expected the first year GDP would increase 1.4% to 3.8% as a result of the stimulus. The results where it reversed from -2.6% to 2.6% growth a 5.2% swing the first year. If you want to talk about why we still have high unemployment, GDP only increaseing 2-3% per year and so on.. that makes for a very long, complex conversation. But the truth is economist are not dummies. I think it’s funny how certian people without knowledge in the area trust their intuitions rather then what years and years research and studing have taught others. These same people I would assume do not trust their doctors either.

    Plenty of other interesting comments in there too.

    Also, 28% of the ‘stimulus’ was comprised of tax cuts.

    Thumb up 0

  47. Iconoclast

    And then Iconoclast comes in, in an apparent attempt to misrepresent for a gold medal.

    Again, priceless. Apparently, you ignored where I show Rich’s comment in it’s proper context:

    It was not suppose to turn out this way. For a man that had such potential, such vision, and such a bullet proof super majority in both houses, how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?

    You seem to be claiming that “how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?” represents Rich’s own personal point of view, but if that’s the case, then so does “For a man that had such potential, such vision…”, which would definitely suggest that Rich “bought into” the hyperbole at some level, but you are also on record as saying:

    But you’re not one of them [who bought into the hype]. THAT IS THE POINT.

    So you are either trying to have it both ways, or you are flat-out contradicting yourself.

    Your choice.

    Like I said, if anyone is misrepresenting anything, it would appear to be you.

    Thumb up 2

  48. richtaylor365 *

    That’s far from “34 tests with 34 fails”. Not even Laffer makes such an extremist claim.

    You are right, he gives that 35th try zero chance of success, I was being generous.

    But you’re not one of them. THAT IS THE POINT.

    Interesting how you totally misinterpret ,”After all, the electorate was sold this mythical demigod of a politician”, then twist into an admission that he bought into it as well (which you know damn well that he didn’t) solely for the purpose of ridiculing him for faux pretense., not very sporting.

    The question becomes, how far we would have otherwise continued to go in the wrong direction?

    Yes, when all else fails you will always have that to fall back on ,” I ran off the road, hit a tree, totaled my car and ended up in traction for 6 months. But it could have been worse, aliens might have been waiting just around the bend, planning to abduct me, dissect my body for research, then feed the remains to their pet snarkles, thank God I ran into that tree”.

    Thumb up 0

  49. Iconoclast

    There you go again. I did say that making “a specific comment about one part of what Rich said” “translated” into anything. That’s just you warping things again.

    Oops. That should be:

    There you go again. I didn’t say that making “a specific comment about one part of what Rich said” “translated” into anything. That’s just you warping things again.

    Perhaps that unfortunate typo is what led CM to believe that I “admitted” something. If so, then I apologize for accusing him of putting words in my mouth on that particular score.

    Thumb up 0

  50. CM

    CM –

    r.j. was against the Stimulus back in 2009, and makes some pretty compelling statements as to why it was a bad idea.

    That thread isn’t really anti-stimulus (“Increasing government spending in the short term isn’t the end of the world. Not in a deflationary cycle”). His was an argument about how the stimulus should be designed, not an objection to stimulus per se. He also points out that McCain wouldn’t have been any different (which is what I’ve been saying, because they were BOTH following similar economic advice, because there were very few reputable economists, that aren’t ideologues, saying anything different).
    The main reason unemployment didn’t drop as fast as hoped was because the recession was much deeper than anyone realised.

    Looking at it after the fact, if you really think it ‘worked’ as we were promised by politicians (and many economists that supported it) that it would…well then you’re delusional.

    It seems to have done enough to stave off the worst effects of a HUGE amount of private spending/wealth being sucked from the economy yeah.

    In the first half of 2008, GDP stagnated, and then in the second half, it began to contract at an alarming rate. In the 4th quarter of 2008, GDP declined by an astounding 9 percent. As the economy shrank, companies began laying off more and more people, and we began losing jobs left and right. By the time President Obama took office, the economy was in a free-fall. In January 2009, the country lost more jobs in a single month than it had in any month in the previous 60 years.

    Then, in February, we enacted the stimulus bill. It was designed to stop the bleeding and turn the economy around by pumping billions of dollars into the economy through things like infrastructure investments, aid to the states, and tax breaks. So what happened after the stimulus started? Did the economy continue its disastrous tumble?

    In the second quarter of 2009, the first full quarter after the stimulus passed, the economy did still contract, but at only a 0.7 percent rate, and then began to grow again in the third quarter. Job losses also began to slow down immediately. Before the stimulus, we were losing more and more jobs each month. After the stimulus: fewer and fewer, until eventually we started adding jobs again. Private-sector layoffs actually peaked in the month the stimulus started, and then declined dramatically.

    In early 2009, every indication was that the economy was headed over the edge of a cliff. But at the last second, the country swerved away from the edge and started heading back in the right direction.

    Now maybe it was just pure coincidence that the turnaround began at almost the exact same moment that the stimulus started. It could be possible that that the economy began to grow again, job losses began to slow and layoffs started coming back down to earth all at nearly the same time — right after the president signed the Recovery Act — and it had nothing at all to do with the stimulus.

    More likely, of course, is that the myriad independent economists — from the Congressional Budget Office to Moody’s.com to Macro Economic Advisors — are right.

    I linked to this elsewhere.

    http://mikenormaneconomics.blogspot.co.nz/2012/06/did-stimulus-work-heres-unequivocal.html

    You seem to be claiming that “how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?” represents Rich’s own personal point of view, but if that’s the case, then so does “For a man that had such potential, such vision…”, which would definitely suggest that Rich “bought into” the hyperbole at some level….

    He’s mixing in his personal views with the views of the ‘disappointed’ actor in the video. They share a common view that Obama has been a failure.

    but you are also on record as saying:

    Rich didn’t buy into the hype. He said so himself: “didn’t agree but understood”.

    When I get time I’ll make a list of the misrepresentation you’ve displayed in this thread.

    You are right, he gives that 35th try zero chance of success, I was being generous.

    No comments at all on the rather significant and obvious problems with the analysis? What about the fact that the GDP cutoff used stops just at the point where turns the corner (see graph here)?. Or the issue of using governemt SPENDING AS PERCENT OF GDP for this purpose?
    There is also the rather significant question of cause and effect – it could very well be that the countries who saw their GDP plummet decided to stimulate the economy (again, following generally-agreed economic advice).

    Interesting how you totally misinterpret ,”After all, the electorate was sold this mythical demigod of a politician”, then twist into an admission that he bought into it as well (which you know damn well that he didn’t) solely for the purpose of ridiculing him for faux pretense., not very sporting.

    I know damn well that neither of you bought into it. Again, that’s why I said ‘pretend’.

    Yes, when all else fails you will always have that to fall back on

    And you’ll have an analysis which includes GDP ending virtually right after the stimulus kicks in.

    I don’t think your analogy is remotely comparable, even if it was funny. I’m yet to hear how unemployment wouldn’t have skyrocketed given how much private spending/wealth disappeared from the economy in a short space of time. The stimulus was the government stepping in (while interest rates are close to 0%) to fill part of the gaping hole. If they didn’t, what else would have filled it? If it wasn’t partially filled (at least) how does that not lead to a huge increase in unemployment? I’m still waiting for a reasonable explanation of what would have happened (which doesn’t involve magic).

    Thumb up 0

  51. CM

    Looking at it after the fact, if you really think it ‘worked’ as we were promised by politicians (and many economists that supported it) that it would…well then you’re delusional.

    In a survey conducted by the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, 80 percent of economic experts agreed that, because of the stimulus, the U.S. unemployment rate was lower at the end of 2010 than it would have been otherwise.

    “Only 4 percent disagreed or strongly disagreed,” CBO Director Douglas Elmendorf told the House Budget Committee. “That,” he added, “is a distinct minority.”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/congressional-budget-office-defends-stimulus/2012/06/06/gJQAnFnjJV_story.html

    Surely it would be more ‘delusional’ to side with the 4% over the 80%?

    Thumb up 0

  52. CM

    Perhaps that unfortunate typo is what led CM to believe that I “admitted” something. If so, then I apologize for accusing him of putting words in my mouth on that particular score.

    ;-) Thanks. Funnily enough I did read it as you corrected it anyway

    Anyway, for the record….

    1 = Your statement
    2 = Why I believe it was a misrepresentation of what I said

    1. Sorry, we keep forgetting the Offical Party Narrative: Nothing is Ever Obama’s Fault. Everything is Always Bush’s Fault.
    2. I am not a member of any political party, American or otherwise. I’ve never claimed anything even remotely black and white.

    1. But the point you seem intent on dodging is that Obama is in charge now, so he bears responsibility.
    2. I am not dodging that point. I’m saying the original point seemed intent on dodging the financial situation and the degree to which economists largely agreed on the best way to stave off the worst effects.

    1. Oh, so spending our nation into bankruptcy and oblivion is now sound policy, thanks to the GFC? Getting is in hock up to our eyeballs to potentially hostile foreign powers is sound policy, thanks to the GFC?
    2. Completely and utterly ridiculous to claim that’s what I believe or said.

    1. What you are telling us is that “normally”, spending your nation into bankruptcy would be considered a foolish thing to do, but because of your “elephant in the room”, it’s now wiser than Solomon to do exactly that.
    2. Completely and utterly ridiculous to claim that’s what I believe or said.

    1. “Normally” (according to Obama himself), spending your country into massive debt indicates “failed leadership”, but thanks to the GFC, it somehow now represents the epitome of leadership…
    2. Completely and utterly ridiculous to claim that’s what I believe or said.

    1. I’ve got a better idea: Why don’t you actually address the various issues raised in the video at the top of this thread instead of just barfing up the GFC as some sort of magic “Get Out of Jail Free” card for Obama?
    2. I never claimed to be covering all the issues raised. And I don’t consider the GFC to be even remotely a “Get Out of Jail Free” card. Again, I’m saying the original point seemed intent on dodging the financial situation and the degree to which economists largely agreed on the best way to stave off the worst effects.

    1. No, what is “clearly disingenuous” is using the GFC as some sort of magic pill to shield a sitting President from legitimate specific criticisms, some of which have nothing to do with the economy.
    2. Completely and utterly ridiculous to claim that’s what I believe or said. As above.

    1. Having no valid response other than proclaiming victory indicates that you have essentially given up.
    2. I did no such thing.

    1. Economists: The stimulus didn’t help
    2. Misrepresentation

    1. A Verdict on Obama’s “Stimulus” Plan
    2. Misrepresentation.

    1. Wow! Just…wow…I mean, talk about “misleading” and “being desperate” and what not. The article you cited is talking about a program that precedes the Obama Administration. Paragraph 5 clearly states that the program under discussion was started by President Bush.
    2. No loans were given out under Bush and I never claimed they were.

    1. #1. I personally never “bought into it”.
    2. I said “pretend” twice in the sentence. If I thought you did, then you couldn’t “pretend to”, that would be impossible.

    1. The list goes on and on, ad nauseam, but I doubt it would ever be enough to convince you, your being so “objective” and all…
    2. You’re trying to make it look like I’m arguing that many people didn’t hold that view of Obama. I’m very aware that they did. I have never argued that they didn’t.

    1. Which was started by George W. Bush. It says so in the first sentence of paragraph 5.
    2. I know, and I wasn’t trying to fool anyone into believing anything else. It’s well established fact (including here on this blog).

    1. It is indeed misleading to use that article to represent Obama’s record.
    2. I wasn’t attempting to represent his record. I’m countering your representation of his record (which is why I asked “do they factor in things like this?”)

    1. Investors.com? Well, of course it is. You disagree with it, after all, and, as we all know, only you are the objective one…
    2. I never said the source was biased and the substance should be dismissed. Play the ball, not the man. My point was that the analysis didn’t appear to be very deep, and I wondered if they factored in considerations such as jobs (after all if Keystone was a disaster because of the all the jobs that won’t occur, surely jobs must be a consideration in any reasonable assessment on this wider issue).

    1. Think Progress? Talk about biased, it’s evident just by looking at the page you linked. Even at that, the article is primarily discussing the potential of specific western states’ green energy initiatives. It isn’t claiming success for Obama’s “investments” necessarily.
    2. Misrepresents the links. It also talks about the actual jobs, which is the part I quoted.

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  53. Iconoclast

    When I get time I’ll make a list of the misrepresentation you’ve displayed in this thread.

    Correction: You will make a list of what you personally think are misrepresentations; there is no objective reason for concluding that they are misrepresentations, only the subjective reason that you don’t like having your nonsense thrown back in your face.

    He’s mixing in his personal views with the views of the ‘disappointed’ actor in the video.

    So then, the verdict is that you’re trying to have it both ways. The person in the video clearly does not think that we’re better off than we were pre-Obama. Quite the contrary, by all appearances. And neither. does Rich, by all appearances. The $16 trillion of debt is just an historical fact of reality.

    So, when Rich writes:

    It was not suppose to turn out this way. For a man that had such potential, such vision, and such a bullet proof super majority in both houses, how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?

    He is simply re-iterating the sentiment expressed in the video, and adding on another anecdotal bit of reality: we (the USA) are in the hole $16 trillion. That he obviously agrees with the video’s conclusion, that we are worse off than before Obama took office, has absolutely nothing to do with “buying into the Obama Hype”, or even “pretending” to do so. That Rich agrees with the video’s conclusion is presumably why he posted it in the first place.

    What Rich is “mixing” is a reflection of the pre-election hype along with historical facts, but again, acknowledging the existence of the pre-election hype absolutely does not translate into the “buying” thereof, and it absolutely does not translate into “pretending” to do so, either. That Obama had “a bullet proof super majority in both houses” is simple, historical fact, just like the $16 trillion debt. That you think you can get away with taking the clause, “how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?” in isolation as representing Rich’s viewpoint, but somehow not representing the viewpoint of the person in the video, is intellectually dishonest, given that the person in the video mentions the debt issue even though she doesn’t mention a specific figure.

    Therefore, when you take the clause, “how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?” out of its context and respond to it in isolation thusly:

    The GFC.

    It certainly looks like you are answering Rich’s comments, and by association the video as a whole, with “The GFC”. You then follow that up with:

    We’re worse off and more in debt than 4 years ago, and how responsible is Obama for that?

    Which further solidifies the observation that you are using “the GFC” to let Obama off the hook for everything in the video. After all, the question, “how responsible is Obama for that?” certainly removes responsibility from Obama, and since, by all appearance, you are asserting that “We’re worse off and more in debt than 4 years ago” either solely or at the very least primarily because of the GFC, the observation that you are attempting to use “the GFC” as a “Get Out of Jail Free” card on Obama’s behalf naturally follows.

    So, no “misrepresentation” at all on my side. Like it or lump it, I take words at face value. Furthermore, it is simply absurd that I have to connect the dots for you at such a mundane level as simple reading comprehension.

    1 = Your statement
    2 = Why I believe it was a misrepresentation of what I said

    1. Sorry, we keep forgetting the Official Party Narrative: Nothing is Ever Obama’s Fault. Everything is Always Bush’s Fault.
    2. I am not a member of any political party, American or otherwise. I’ve never claimed anything even remotely black and white.

    Irrelevant. Your response simply dovetails too perfectly into the standard narrative we in the USA have been first-hand experiencing for the past 3 1/2 years for you to be let off the hook for allegedly not being a member of any given party. Like I said, I take words at face value, as do most people. Since you don’t live here in the USA, you cannot understand the cultural/political milieu we live in day after day. Our Mainstream Media is hopelessly biased to the left, and still has a school-girl crush on Obama. At least, that’s how it appears to me as a day-to-day observer living in the milieu. Also, 3 1/2 years into his Administration, we are still hearing about how today’s problems are the results of prior Administrations’ policies.

    1. But the point you seem intent on dodging is that Obama is in charge now, so he bears responsibility.
    2. I am not dodging that point. I’m saying the original point seemed intent on dodging the financial situation and the degree to which economists largely agreed on the best way to stave off the worst effects.

    I didn’t say you were dodging the point. I said that you seemed intent on dodging it. You see, I make every effort to qualify what I say, and to choose my words carefully. If you don’t want to be “misrepresented” going forward, perhaps you should do the same. Furthermore, to your point, many of the things in the video had nothing to do with the GFC, and again, Rich’s comment (which you took out of context) was simply a reflection of the video, regardless of how much you may want it to be otherwise. This is one reason why it appears that you are dodging the overall points made in the video by trying to focus on the GFC and the Stimulus.

    1. Oh, so spending our nation into bankruptcy and oblivion is now sound policy, thanks to the GFC? Getting is in hock up to our eyeballs to potentially hostile foreign powers is sound policy, thanks to the GFC?
    2. Completely and utterly ridiculous to claim that’s what I believe or said.

    Well, for starters, your beliefs are irrelevant — I am only responding to what you actually write (and again, I take the words at face value, your protestations to the contrary notwithstanding) and simply cannot give a tinker’s damn what you may or may not believe. As far as what you allegedly did or didn’t say, you did indeed say that I couldn’t use Obama’s own words against him because of the GFC:

    1. You cannot take a speech on the economy from 2006 and apply it now, while the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression continues.

    That clearly implies that increasing debt in the here-and-now is something that cannot be criticized, especially by using Obama’s own words. You have stated time and time again that the Stimulus was what the “consensus” agreed to be the solution to the GFC, and, going back to your original post, the GFC is why we are where we are, and Obama’s policies are simply “pragmatic measures”. So yes, your writings did indeed imply that, due to the GFC, increasing debt was simply a side-effect of “pragmatic” measures, which is to say, “sound policy”. So, by transitivity, in the current situation, increasing debt is sound policy, because it’s simply an “unfortunate side effect” of massive spending.

    I suppose I could continue fisking your nonsense, but the point should be clear by now: I’m not “misrepresenting” anything, but am simply taking words at face value.

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  54. CM

    Correction: You will make a list of what you personally think are misrepresentations; there is no objective reason for concluding that they are misrepresentations, only the subjective reason that you don’t like having your nonsense thrown back in your face.

    2 = Why I believe it was a misrepresentation of what I said

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  55. CM

    The person in the video clearly does not think that we’re better off than we were pre-Obama. Quite the contrary, by all appearances. And neither. does Rich, by all appearances. The $16 trillion of debt is just an historical fact of reality.

    Whether you’re worse off depends on what factors you want to consider. GDP is now higher than it was.
    Recovering from a deep and long recession is also an historical fact of reality. That’s really all I’ve been trying to point out.

    He is simply re-iterating the sentiment expressed in the video, and adding on another anecdotal bit of reality: we (the USA) are in the hole $16 trillion.

    Right. He shares the sentiment, even though he doesn’t share the disappointment. I don’t think Rich shared the hyperbole, I think he’s taking advantage of it now. But I think that’s dangerous, because that disappointment relies on ignoring the reality of the depth and length of the recession.

    That he obviously agrees with the video’s conclusion, that we are worse off than before Obama took office, has absolutely nothing to do with “buying into the Obama Hype”, or even “pretending” to do so. That Rich agrees with the video’s conclusion is presumably why he posted it in the first place.

    The actor in the video is doing exactly as I said: pretending to have bought into the hype so that the difference between the unrealistic hope and the reality can be as wide as possible.
    It’s nothing new. The best way to make someone look as bad as possible (because that’s the intention here, obviously) is to compare one extreme to the other.
    It is possible to reach much the same general conclusions WITHOUT pretending to have bought into the hype, and WITHOUT ignoring the elephant in the room. It would carry more weight too.

    What Rich is “mixing” is a reflection of the pre-election hype along with historical facts, but again, acknowledging the existence of the pre-election hype absolutely does not translate into the “buying” thereof, and it absolutely does not translate into “pretending” to do so, either.

    I was responding to YOUR comments when I said that.

    That Obama had “a bullet proof super majority in both houses” is simple, historical fact,

    It might be but that doesn’t mean he could get what he wanted. There were a couple of Dem votes that weren’t guaranteed. Which is why he had to work with Republicans and ensure at least a few votes from that side. That’s why he had to compromise on the stimulus, and drop cap and trade.

    just like the $16 trillion debt.

    Again, context matters a great deal. Racking up a debt of that much during a boom, and borrowing at high interest rates, is substantially different than racking up that debt in a severe multi-year recession at almost 0% interest.

    That you think you can get away with taking the clause, “how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?” in isolation as representing Rich’s viewpoint, but somehow not representing the viewpoint of the person in the video, is intellectually dishonest, given that the person in the video mentions the debt issue even though she doesn’t mention a specific figure.

    You’ve taken my specific comment about a specific part of what Rich said and then added something later on that I said to you. That’s the dishonesty.

    It certainly looks like you are answering Rich’s comments, and by association the video as a whole, with “The GFC”.

    That’s as intellectually dishonest as it gets. If I was addressing the whole video, and all of Rich’s comments, I wouldn’t have quoted a specific part of it all and wouldn’t have specifically responded to that specific part.

    Which further solidifies the observation that you are using “the GFC” to let Obama off the hook for everything in the video.

    Oh my fucking god. It does the exact opposite. It couldn’t have been obvious that I was being specific.

    After all, the question, “how responsible is Obama for that?” certainly removes responsibility from Obama,

    Clearly Obama is not responsible at all for the GFC. I think we can all agree with that. And clearly the GFC is somewhat responsible for the current economic situation. Most would agree that it’s asignificant factor (whether you agree or disagree with Obama’s economic performance). It therefore follows that the degree to which Obama is responsible for the economic situation starts after that point. If we agree up to a certain point, we can then see how/why we part ways after that.

    and since, by all appearance, you are asserting that “We’re worse off and more in debt than 4 years ago” either solely or at the very least primarily because of the GFC, the observation that you are attempting to use “the GFC” as a “Get Out of Jail Free” card on Obama’s behalf naturally follows.

    Nonsense. Factoring in the GFC in no way equates to a “Get Out of Jail Free”. However I would say that any discussion/conclusion reached without factoring it in is the opposite equivalent.
    No doubt the US is more in debt. That’s, as you say, a fact. Whether you’re worse off depends on what factors you take into account. Some people aren’t. GDP is now higher than it was when Obama took office.

    So, no “misrepresentation” at all on my side. Like it or lump it, I take words at face value.

    Well I disagree. You’ve misrepresented my position a number of times throughout the thread. You’ve done it again, even after I point it out.

    Furthermore, it is simply absurd that I have to connect the dots for you at such a mundane level as simple reading comprehension.

    This coming from someone who takes a specific response to a specific comment about something specific and continually treats it as a general response to an entire video and post. And KEEPS DOING IT even after I point it out. That’s absurd.

    Irrelevant. Your response simply dovetails too perfectly into the standard narrative we in the USA have been first-hand experiencing for the past 3 1/2 years for you to be let off the hook for allegedly not being a member of any given party. Like I said, I take words at face value, as do most people.

    Rubbish. If you took words at face value you’d have noticed immediately that I responded to a specific with a specific. Pretending that a specific response relates generally, and pretending that I’m saying the GFC let’s Obama off the hook for his economic performance is evidence of the exact opposite.
    It looks like you’ve just twisted what I’ve said all along so it fits that “standard narrative”, so you can attack it.

    Since you don’t live here in the USA, you cannot understand the cultural/political milieu we live in day after day.

    Fair enough.

    I didn’t say you were dodging the point. I said that you seemed intent on dodging it. You see, I make every effort to qualify what I say, and to choose my words carefully.

    So do I. Which is why I made it very clear that I was being specific in my first post.

    If you don’t want to be “misrepresented” going forward, perhaps you should do the same.

    I thought I did. I honestly cannot see how you can take something clearly specific and apply it to whatever you wish.

    Furthermore, to your point, many of the things in the video had nothing to do with the GFC,

    Absolutely.

    and again, Rich’s comment (which you took out of context) was simply a reflection of the video, regardless of how much you may want it to be otherwise.

    Still not understanding how I took it out of context. I could go back and quote more of what he said and it wouldn’t make any difference to the context. If I replied that all the issues mentioned in the video were explained by the GFC, then that would be absurb and deserving of ridicule. But I clearly didn’t.

    This is one reason why it appears that you are dodging the overall points made in the video by trying to focus on the GFC and the Stimulus.

    I could have gone through the video and made comments about each aspect, but I didn’t. That doesn’t mean I’m dodging them. At all.

    Well, for starters, your beliefs are irrelevant

    WTF?!! You were suggesting what my beliefs are (that it’s “sound policy”) – how on earth can you now claim they’re irrelevant???!

    I am only responding to what you actually write (and again, I take the words at face value, your protestations to the contrary notwithstanding) and simply cannot give a tinker’s damn what you may or may not believe.

    Again, you can’t have it both ways.
    Your questions were: ” So spending our nation into bankruptcy and oblivion is now sound policy, thanks to the GFC? Getting is in hock up to our eyeballs to potentially hostile foreign powers is sound policy, thanks to the GFC?”
    I explained my answers to those questions.
    Essentially what you’ve done is incorrectly interpret what my opinion is, and then when I disagree you say it doesn’t matter anyway because my opinion is irrelevant. WTF?!

    As far as what you allegedly did or didn’t say, you did indeed say that I couldn’t use Obama’s own words against him because of the GFC:

    Again, I said context was important. As it is when watching videos of Bush talking about being against nation building (and telling reporters to watch his golf drive). Sure, we can all disagree about the weighting we give context, but ignoring context out-right is just dishonest.

    That clearly implies that increasing debt in the here-and-now is something that cannot be criticized, especially by using Obama’s own words.

    Absolute nonsense. That is such garbage.

    You have stated time and time again that the Stimulus was what the “consensus” agreed to be the solution to the GFC, and, going back to your original post, the GFC is why we are where we are, and Obama’s policies are simply “pragmatic measures”. So yes, your writings did indeed imply that, due to the GFC, increasing debt was simply a side-effect of “pragmatic” measures, which is to say, “sound policy”. So, by transitivity, in the current situation, increasing debt is sound policy, because it’s simply an “unfortunate side effect” of massive spending.

    That’s broadly accurate.
    But to THEN conclude that I believe that its meant “spending our nation into bankruptcy and oblivion” and doing THAT “is now sound policy, thanks to the GFC” is something quite different.
    You’re ignoring issues such as: the reason why economists advocate govt spending during recessions (the effects otherwise), the fact that borrowing during recessions can be undertaken at extremely low rates, the fact that that spending naturally decreases as the economy recovers through less govt assistance and greater tax revenue, etc etc.

    I suppose I could continue fisking your nonsense, but the point should be clear by now: I’m not “misrepresenting” anything, but am simply taking words at face value.

    No, you’re not. You’re twisting whatever can get your hands on. I’ve explained why and how in great detail and yet you’re still doing it.

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  56. Iconoclast

    Well, to say that this is absurd and pathetic would be an understatement. Obviously, you aren’t listening, but are simply being recalcitrant instead, which is your prerogative, I suppose, but you can dispense with your pretenses toward “objectivity”…

    Regardless of how mush it makes the pit of your stomach churn, what I gave was a good faith explanation of how your original posting to this thread struck me, how I interpreted it, and why I interpreted it in the manner I did. Obviously, you don’t like the explanation. Too bad, so sad, like I said, if you intended for your original post to be taken in a specific manner, if it was taken in a manner other than what you intended, well, that’s your problem. I explained quite clearly why your “the GFC” response struck me as a “Get Out Of Jail Free” absolution. That you obviously disagree is irrelevant; the onus is on you to choose your words so that they cannot be misconstrued.

    Whether you’re worse off depends on what factors you want to consider.

    Whether we’re worse off or not based on whatever metric you want to dig up is irrelevant. What is relevant is the sentiment expressed in the video. If you want to argue against the video, fine, but make sure you address what the video is saying, not your own damned straw men.

    GDP is now higher than it was. Recovering from a deep and long recession is also an historical fact of reality.

    Yes, and unemployment has (allegedly) dropped from nine percent to “only” eight (depending on how you determine the actual figure), but it’s still higher than when Obama took office, and is only now at the original estimate of where it would be after the Stimulus passed according to the hucksters that promoted the damned thing. The point here is that we are by no means obligated to buy into the notion that we’re “better off”…

    Recovering from a deep and long recession is also an historical fact of reality.

    Yes, we’ve been told that we’re “recovering” for months on end. So what? Millions are still unemployed, and this “recovery” is the weakest, the most anemic recovery ever. And the Obama Administration is still spending on borrowed money, still increasing debt, still excessively regulating small business. And the USA still lost its AAA credit rating. And the debt ceiling was still raised (which Obama claimed to be a sign of “failed leadership” when he wasn’t the leader).

    The actor in the video is doing exactly as I said: pretending to have bought into the hype so that the difference between the unrealistic hope and the reality can be as wide as possible.

    But you said I was doing it (emphasis added):

    I love this whole schtik where you (and not just you) pretend to have bought into the whole “mythical demigod of a politician” so that you can then pretend to have been so crushingly disappointed. It’s cute.

    I never “bought into it”. Period. I never “pretended” to do so. Period. When I pointed this out, your blew a gasket. Again, your problem, not mine.

    You then followed that with:

    The rest of your post is essentially just agreeing that you misrepresented what I said. At least you’re admitting it.

    That is a classic example of your misrepresenting what I said.

    It looks like you’ve just twisted what I’ve said all along so it fits that “standard narrative”, so you can attack it.

    It may “look” that way to you, but as I explained, no “twisting” was needed; what you stated did indeed match the standard narrative, which is why I responded as i did. Ejaculating the word “Rubbish” by way of response does absolutely nothing to mitigate that.

    . I honestly cannot see how you can take something clearly specific and apply it to whatever you wish.

    For starters, I didn’t “apply it to whatever [I] wish[ed]”, but simply to the original posting, and I explained how. If you still “honestly cannot see” it, then perhaps it’s because you simply don’t want to see it.

    Again, you can’t have it both ways.

    I’m not trying to…

    Your questions were: “So spending our nation into bankruptcy and oblivion is now sound policy, thanks to the GFC? Getting is in hock up to our eyeballs to potentially hostile foreign powers is sound policy, thanks to the GFC?”

    Yes, and they were addressing what you wrote. Period. Your “beliefs”, whatever they may be, do not enter into it. If you “honestly cannot see” that, well, again, that’s your problem.

    Essentially what you’ve done is incorrectly interpret what my opinion is, and then when I disagree you say it doesn’t matter anyway because my opinion is irrelevant. WTF?!

    So now you’re conflating “belief” with “opinion”. What I responded to was your written words, which were presented as “facts”, not “opinions”. Since they were expressed as “facts”, I took issue, since I obviously didn’t agree with those “facts”.

    Sure, we can all disagree about the weighting we give context, but ignoring context out-right is just dishonest.

    Well, the context was raising the debt ceiling, which again became an issue in Obama’s Administration. The debate took place last year (2011), a solid 2+ years into Obama’s first term, and well after the whole Stimulus debacle. The Stimulus was passed in 2009, so it was pretty much history by the time the debt ceiling debate became an issue. It could be argued that, if the Stimulus really worked as advertised, the debt ceiling would have been much less of an issue. But the bottom line, here, is that you are simply incorrect in trying to make the GFC a mitigating circumstance, given that were we’re allegedly in recovery mode by the time the summer of 2011 occurred.

    As it is when watching videos of Bush talking about being against nation building (and telling reporters to watch his golf drive).

    Your analogy is severely flawed. For one thing, you talking about Bush’s personal change in attitude toward a given subject, but nowhere do you refer to Bush passing any kind of overall judgement on the issue of nation building. Sure, we all change our minds about things, just as Bush apparently did about that subject. Bush was simply expressing his personal views during a moment of down time.

    In sharp contrast, Obama was giving a speech on the floor of the Senate, and he was passing judgement on the current Administration’s policies. So, you see, you are simply trying to trivialize the gravity of Obama’s words by comparing them (inappropriately) to off-the-cuff remarks Bush made during a golf game. And given the setting in which Obama made his statements, I do consider myself entitled to use those words as I did. He uttered then into the official Senate record, after all. Your unflagging disagreement is ultimately inconsequential.

    No, you’re not.

    Yes, I am. Like it or lump it.

    You’re twisting whatever can get your hands on. I’ve explained why and how in great detail and yet you’re still doing it.

    Your “explanations” are simply empty dismissals of my explanations, and are therefore irrelevant.

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  57. CM

    Regardless of how mush it makes the pit of your stomach churn, what I gave was a good faith explanation of how your original posting to this thread struck me, how I interpreted it, and why I interpreted it in the manner I did. Obviously, you don’t like the explanation. Too bad, so sad, like I said, if you intended for your original post to be taken in a specific manner, if it was taken in a manner other than what you intended, well, that’s your problem. I explained quite clearly why your “the GFC” response struck me as a “Get Out Of Jail Free” absolution. That you obviously disagree is irrelevant; the onus is on you to choose your words so that they cannot be misconstrued.

    Nonsense. Good faith involves accepting that you’ve misinterpreted something when it’s pointed out. Everyone misinterprets from time to time. But you don’t then just double-down on your misintepretation and then blame the other person. Because then it becomes misrepresentation.

    Your “explanations” are simply empty dismissals of my explanations, and are therefore irrelevant.

    Ok well that’s the end of that then. I wish I could say it’s been fun, but it really hasn’t. I look forward to applying all your rules to your subsequent posts (especially the whole ‘face value’ thing, which really means stripping context when you feel like it).

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  58. Iconoclast

    Nonsense. Good faith involves accepting that you’ve misinterpreted something when it’s pointed out.

    Well, that depends on how “it’s pointed out”:

    You’re trying to dishonestly pretend I’m using the GFC to excuse anything and everything.

    Almost immediately, you accuse me of being dishonest. You then subsequently accused me of misrepresentation. That is why I ultimately had to break it down for you, down to absurdly ridiculous levels, but initially, I simply told you, in good faith, that such is how it appeared:

    I’m telling you how things appear — no pretense involved, no pretense needed.

    You never did respond to that specific observation, so either you ignored it or never bothered to read it, yet you still apparently felt justified in accusing me of multiple counts of “misrepresentation”. Now before I “recognize” what you “really meant”, before I “accept” that I have “misinterpreted”, I am going to defend myself against your charges. That’s just the way I choose to operate, and if you disagree with my priorities, too bad.

    Everyone misinterprets from time to time. But you don’t then just double-down on your misintepretation and then blame the other person. Because then it becomes misrepresentation.

    I do “blame the other person” when they either ignore my explanations or merely dismiss them as “dishonesty”. Your explanations notwithstanding, when I read your first response, it still looks the way it did originally, even though I can accept that you meant something else entirely. That isn’t “doubling down”, by the way. It’s merely defending oneself against charges of “dishonesty” and/or “misrepresentation”.

    The underlying problem may very well be that you and I see “how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?” differently. I see it as a summary of what the video is conveying, and apparently, you see it as an isolated question.

    I wish I could say it’s been fun, but it really hasn’t.

    [shrug] It takes two to tango, chief. No one had a gun to your head…

    I look forward to applying all your rules to your subsequent posts (especially the whole ‘face value’ thing, which really means stripping context when you feel like it).

    #1. Now you are clearly misrepresenting what I said.

    #2. I can easily argue that “how could we be worse off then before, and $16 trillion in debt for our troubles?” is simply an attempt to strip away context.

    #3. If you plan to emulate my methods, then qualify your statements to make misconstruing them less likely. I make generous use of “it appears that”, “apparently”, “it seems as if”, etc., and generally make every attempt to qualify what I say. (I did it just then with the use of the word “generally”.)

    #4. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery…

    I’m finished with this abysmal attempt at reasonable discussion.

    Famous Last Words…

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