"Republicans Appear Incapable Of Compromise"

That's Booman's headline on the Cantor walkout. But he writes like it is a bad thing in terms of bargaining by the Republicans. Booman thinks that this means that "[Republicans] are going to blow up the global economy through their intransigence and unreasonableness." No they aren't. Democrats are going to cave. This is the Madman Theory of Political Bargaining.

As digby says, "after some drama, the votes will probably be cobbled together with Democrats being forced to form the majority because the GOP has successfully deployed the Madman Strategy. (Isn't that how it usually works?)" Yes, that's how it usually works.

We're doomed.

Speaking for me only

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    Sometimes I wonder (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by lilburro on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 12:29:31 PM EST
    if after 8 years (assuming Obama gets 8) Booman will look back and say, "there must've been a better way to do this."  Carping about GOP intransigence only goes so far (esp. when Obama himself won't blame them).  It reminds me of the Dennis Green rant..."THEY ARE WHO WE THOUGHT THEY WERE!!!"  And we let them off the hook!

    Maybe (1.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:04:15 PM EST
    but I have to tell you that I never understood people like Booman until I saw an interview with Glenn Ford over at the BAR. He said that the bar is set very low for Obama with the African American community and it's such a sense of pride with African Americans to have the Obamas in the White House that they are immune to his policy decisions. It also helped me understand where ABG is coming from. It's all about pride.

    What? (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by lilburro on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:15:19 PM EST
    First of all I think Booman is white.  So your already rather condescending comment becomes just a little more nonsensical.  Second of all I really don't think Booman's POV (or for example, John Cole's POV which is often similar) has anything to do with Obama's race.  Some bloggers are just very protective of Obama, for a variety of reasons.  They think defending the President should be the main or one of the main objectives of progressives.

    Thank God (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:16:50 PM EST
    I'm a liberal, and not a progressive. I tend to think of 'progressive' and 'pimp' as similar.

    liberal vs. progressive (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by noholib on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:11:13 PM EST
    I agree that liberal is best, as my screen-name indicates!  Progressive is meaningless, just a name for people who are embarrassed or afraid to use the word 'liberal.' Still, I think 'pimp' is going too far ...

    Did you read the recent Op-Ed piece in the NYT about Hubert Humphrey (I think by Rick Perlstein?)?  It describes the parting of the Democratic ways between liberals with economic concerns such as Humphrey and the good-government types such as Carter.  It makes the case that the Dems and the country in general need good old-fashioned Humphrey-type liberal concerns ... obviously, not wishy-washy "progressive", supposedly centrist "solutions" ... But of course, many here already make this point daily.


    Even HHH had a downside (none / 0) (#107)
    by christinep on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 10:54:35 PM EST
    ...his cheerleading phase for Vietnam could be a blemish on the scene you paint. Or maybe he was fallible, as all of us humans (liberals & progressives) are.

    Actually (none / 0) (#7)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:25:02 PM EST
    I thought Booman was an African American.

    He's a white guy (none / 0) (#90)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 05:24:41 PM EST
    WIth (none / 0) (#8)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:26:31 PM EST
    John Cole it's his personality. He was the same way with Bush. Bush could do no wrong with him for quite a long time.

    Ga6thDem (5.00 / 1) (#29)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:32:09 PM EST
    "It also helped me understand where ABG is coming from. It's all about pride."

    And that comment, my friends, is how I got my name.


    I don't Agree With You on Much, But... (none / 0) (#67)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:36:37 PM EST
    ... I would be angry as well.

    I don't even really want to touch it, but I can't resist a stupid parody...

    "It helped me understand where white people are coming from in regards to GWB.  It's all about pride."

    Good thing politics has come down to race, it will save me countless hours of wasted thinking about the issues.  Or did he mean just black people don't care about the issues ?  I'm so confused.


    Actually (none / 0) (#68)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:41:24 PM EST
    it was about pride with many of the people I know down here in GA with GWB but it was religion based. They didn't care that he lied them into a war because he did "Jesus speak" and these fundamentalists are perpetually plagued with "Christian victim syndrome" and believe that there's a war on Christianity and GWB was their "savior" in this so-called war.

    Politics it seems has become personality based instead of issue based apparently.


    I Think Your Missing the Point, GA (5.00 / 1) (#114)
    by ScottW714 on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 09:44:47 AM EST
    Speaking only for myself, but if you were to suggest that I am so stupid that I would vote for a candidate because their race is the same as my own, we would have a serious problem, especially if you called me out by name and suggested you somehow know where I am coming from.

    Beyond being one of the most condescending comments I have read, it doesn't make any sense.  Why hasn't Alan Keyes got those same black votes and advanced beyond clown status, low bar and all, why are white people voting for Obama, or are black people the only ones privy to this pride you speak of, or possibly..... they are voting on the issues ?

    Beyond that it also suggests that Obama some how parlayed his blackness into some sort of meal ticket into the White House, after all, black people don't care about his views, just his skin tone.  The suggestion is he doesn't deserve it and only got it because the mindless black people gave him a pass, again because of some sort of pride.

    People disagree, only a certain few decide that race is the reason someone doesn't agree with their views.  It's a cheap shot, and even to me it was highly offensive.  

    What blows my mind is on this liberal blog, no one seemed to catch the obvious racist comment. And yes, suggesting other races vote for a candidate because of skin tone, which has something to do with pride, is racist in my book.

    We may not all agree, but the fact that someone is willing to go on here and post their views, means they care about the issues.  Plenty of white folks defending Obama till they are blue in the face.  I would like to think it's a bit more about policy than race.  And just because those views don't align with yours doesn't mean you can toss out a condescending comment.

    And for the record, religion is an issue, if not issues, voting because for party, religion, or a whole host of other reason makes sense, it means that person is voting for issues.  Voting because of race, infers that person cares more about race than actual issues.  Which would obviously make the person casting that vote racist.

    No one has ever made a suggestion like yours until Obama/Hillary came into the picture, then all of a sudden, if you were a female voting for Hilliary it was only because she was a woman, ditto with Obama and race.  It's lazy thinking and I am pretty sure you are above that level of simpleness.

    Refined your comment to reflect if HRC was in the WH:
    "She said that the bar is set very low for Hilliary with the Female Community and it's such a sense of pride with Females to have the Hilliary in the White House that they are immune to her policy decisions. It also helped me understand where (inset female commenter name) is coming from. It's all about pride."


    Well (none / 0) (#115)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 09:59:38 AM EST
    ABG pretty much explained the support below. He said that the African American community is still holding Bush responsible not Obama for the things that are currently going on.

    ScottW714 (none / 0) (#69)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:48:53 PM EST
    And with that my faith in the universe is restored.  Feel free to disagree with everything else I say without reservation.

    ABG, I have another question for you (none / 0) (#72)
    by Buckeye on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:55:20 PM EST
    something I wonder about.  Is it not just "pride" of having an AA President, but is he considered Too Big To Fail?  IOW, are AAs worried that if Obama is not viewed as a success and becomes a one-term President compared to Carter, it will make it even harder for AAs to gain leadership positions in the upper echelons of society?  I get that feeling from AAs more than pride of having him there.  Almost desperation to defend him tooth and nail obssessing over his re-election?

    I think Obama will cave. (5.00 / 2) (#5)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:15:39 PM EST
    Have we seene any indication he's more than Milquetoast?

    Furthermore, his agenda is Reaganesque, not even Nixonian. We got the president his past indicated he would be.

    Sigh. At least W Bush was a "known known," not an "unknown known."

    How do you fight someone or fight for someone who seems to love the run, but not the work?

    It's not that he will cave, it's that he (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:34:22 PM EST
    will try harder to be a better Republican than the Republican leadership; he seems to be convinced that "the problem" is the debt and the deficit, that getting that in order will have jobs springing up like dandelions after a spring rain.

    He will be more reasonable and more cooperative so as to "get things done," because we Americans really want collegiality and unity much, much more than we want real solutions to the problems before us.

    I'd really like to see the Congressional Dems push back hard on all of this, but I think they're just in fear of their own jobs and are making noise to make people think they mean it, "this time."  In the end, it will be Dems like Kent Conrad who will prevail - he of the "2 trillion in cuts is not enough" contingent.

    I am disgusted and really, really cranky; maybe that's coming through.


    DOn't (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:46:02 PM EST
    feel bad about being cranky. The whole country is crank. I'm cranky too. I'm not adjusting well to the "new reality" needless to say and neither is my husband. Trying to make ends meet with 2011 prices and 90's wages is pretty stressful.

    I'll still work on your campaign (none / 0) (#12)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:35:53 PM EST
    against the incumbent, cranky or not.

    Sweet of you to offer, but... (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:44:47 PM EST
    I'd like to think I am too normal to actually want the job; as much as it's possible, I like being my own person - and besides, I really hate crowds, don't like to fly and I wouldn't want to have TL infested with media types and oppo mercenaries looking for dirt - I couldn't do that to kdog!



    You? Normal? (none / 0) (#104)
    by NYShooter on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 06:34:30 PM EST

    You can't (5.00 / 3) (#11)
    by Dadler on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:34:47 PM EST
    The Reagan thing with Obama is both infuriating and hilarious.  I can hardly fathom a more laughably pathetic dope.

    Save us, Cowboy Ronnie, save us!


    Democrats are incapable of learning. (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by observed on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:29:15 PM EST
    It's a great combination.

    Two things: (5.00 / 3) (#66)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:36:20 PM EST
    (1) I would much rather be reading the headline, "Democrats Appear Incapable of Compromise," because it would mean they were actually taking a real stand on something - anything - and

    (2) If, as BTD says, "we're doomed," I guess that would make him "Doom-man," the foil to "Booman."

    Democrats appear incapable of (5.00 / 1) (#106)
    by inclusiveheart on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:37:13 PM EST
    using their spines for anything other than standing up in press conferences to say that they will concede to Republicans and acting all happy about finding "compromise".

    We're doomed ... (none / 0) (#2)
    by Robot Porter on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 12:52:21 PM EST
    so it's probably time for the Dr. Smith "Doomed (We're Doomed) Remix!"

    View from behind Enemy Lines (none / 0) (#15)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:52:04 PM EST
    Went to a lunch today with a bunch of Wall Street investment bankers to hear a speech on the economy  and amazingly, and although there was the typical rhetoric you would expect, there were also points made that I hadn't fully considered and that were surprising given the crowd.

    Natural disasters: Between the earthquakes in Japan which put a serious hurt on supply chains and consumption by a material economy, and the tornadoes, storms and floods in the US, the weather has put an unnatural cramp on global employment numbers, with the US position suffering a huge part of that blow.  

    2. Oil prices: Although they are coming down, that is killing the employment numbers as much as the weather. Obama's move today was not as political as I thought in that many there believed that it was a very shrewd backdoor job stimulus move, which would decrease gas prices rapidly (or at least give that perception) and restart hiring in earnest in the Fall.

    Bottom line: General consensus that the unemployment numbers are about .05% higher that they would be without the oil price increase and natural disasters. They believe we are in for a surprising bump in employment shortly.

    The room was surprisingly amenable to short term stimulus in the form of direct government investment as well.

    Just a data point from one group of thinkers that could be completely wrong, but it made some sense.  It also explains the methods in which Obama is no working to stimulate growth.

    Just to throw some red meat to this crowd, the group appeared to give grudging respect to Obama because of what appears to be a real willingness to curtail spending long term. They still hate him, but they think he's probably the man to find a middle ground between the two polls and minimize extremists on either side.

    To those here that sounds like a bad thing, but I liked it because it's why I voted for him.

    Anyway, that's one view I heard today.

    ABG, you just (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:03:01 PM EST
    lost any credibility with me. Sitting down with the banksters and buying their shinola means you fit in their atmosphere.

    Buying into the sewage that Obama moved toward the middle further does.

    I could listen to some libertarian or Austrian economist say the same, or Rush, or that spewing idiot out of Atlanta.

    Natural disasters happen frequently. Oil is a commodity whose price doesn't reflect true demand, but speculative demand.

    Keep eating your foie gras. Gas prices ALWAYS drop in the fall. It's no longer peak driving season.

    Gah. I tried to give you some credit in the past, but you lost all credibility with this last post. The types you are talking about quantify people into objects, such as producers and consumers. then, based on their assumptions, such as "the invisible hand," they further dehumanize people, and begin to look at "productivity" and "returns."

    Nice to know that a wall-street republican supports Obama, ABG. If you ain't one, then... the Kentucky duck law takes effect. "If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, it's a duck.

    Goodbye, buddy. Support your positions. Now we know where your assumptions come from.


    any thoughts (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by CST on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:08:42 PM EST
    on the latest oil release move?  This article seems to think it will accomplish what you were talking about the other day - getting the speculation out of the market.  Just wondering if you had an opinion, since I thought you had some pretty solid ideas on it the other day.

    Seems like a short term bandaid to me, not a long-term fix.  But it might work in the short term pretty well.


    CST (none / 0) (#23)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:15:55 PM EST
    I think your comment is right.  It's a small story, but I think it is probably the most direct response to the job numbers that we've seen.  Just announcing this will immediately have an impact on gas prices, which will last until prices naturally begin to come down. It is temporary, but temporary is what we need because the trending fundamentals beneath the disasters and oil prices are actually decent. It sets us up for a real hiring push in the Fall and Q1 2012.

    It may not work, but I think when people are asking what's being done, the strategic reserve release was a real affirmative move that Obama can't quite openly argue was motivated by the jobs numbers.  

    But I think it was.


    What does thsi even mean? (5.00 / 3) (#42)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:48:27 PM EST
    "It sets us up for a real hiring push in the Fall and Q1 2012."

    A hiring push? WTF? Push by whom?

    What you are trying to say I think, is you think aggregate demand will increase thus pushing up demand for labor.

    That is just ridiculous imo, given the fact that the federal government is slated to slash spending.

    As I said earlier, I think we are headed to the second dip of a jobs recession.

    11 straight weeks of +400k new jobless claims are evidence supporting my view.  


    BTD (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:09:10 PM EST
    I know exactly what I mean. What I mean is:

    1. Oil prices, supply chain issues, the debt ceiling issue, the Greek debt situation, our own weather and a number of additional factors outside of the norm have created an environment in which (a) many potential employers have delayed hiring decisions or (b) are not in a position to hire due to lack of demand, decreased confidence and a host of other factors.

    2. The spending that will be slashed will not be material in the short term.  Full stop.  No matter what deal is made with the GOP, the odds of it resulting in massive cuts to spending that are material to the employment situation in the next 6-12 months is very low.  Nowhere in your predictions of what the cuts will look like do you delve into the type of cuts, the timing of the cuts and whether the "cuts" are actually the kinds of accounting tricks used in the past.

    3. 11 straight weeks of 400K new jobless claims is a smaller fact in the big scheme of things than the trends before that.

    Well, today's "lunch" (5.00 / 0) (#100)
    by sj on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 06:09:51 PM EST
    gave you a new talking point anyway.  Now we'll constantly be hearing about "the weather" as if there had never been catastrophic weather in the past.  No one had ever heard of hurricanes or tsunamis or tornados or floods or earthquakes before this year, I guess.

    I wonder when we'll suddenly, out of the blue, start having forest fires.


    Whoever Tyler Durden (5.00 / 0) (#102)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 06:30:17 PM EST
    Is at Zero Hedge (I like to read him because he is blood and guts very serious about trading and investing information), he has been making fun of the "disasters" blame all year.  There have always been disasters, but for some reason they have recently become wildly powerful.

    It used (none / 0) (#103)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 06:33:14 PM EST
    to be that disasters only affected the insurance stocks. I guess the new thing is they affect everything. Reminds me of Bush Sr. after Hurricane Andrew.

    Meanwhile (none / 0) (#108)
    by lilburro on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 11:09:43 PM EST
    lest we forget, the Gulf is doing just dandy...

    1 is horsh^t imo (none / 0) (#83)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:32:29 PM EST
    2 and 3 are irrelevant to aggregate demand.

    1 absolves Obama ... (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by Yman on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:47:58 PM EST
    ... of any responsibility, which will be the theme for the next 17 months ...

    ... except for any good economic news.


    Correction on 2 (none / 0) (#88)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 05:13:53 PM EST
    It is relevant, but nothing you describe will help aggregate demand in the short term or medium term and certainly not the long term.

    A drop in oil prices (none / 0) (#92)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 05:28:53 PM EST

    Also, the point wasn't to point to  new affirmative measures but to describe why the recent stagnation doesn't reflect the true effectiveness of the policies already enacted.

    I was countering your suggestion that the jobs numbers of the last 2.5 months reflect the true state of Obama's policies with the idea that everyone globally is experiencing a similar stagnation, regardless of the remedies they have chosen, and you have to take that into account when trying to blame our domestic policies for the uptick in unemployment.

    But let's get in the weeds a bit and use a concrete example:

    Australia. Australia has pretty low unemployment and they had a huge growth in fiscal stimulus during the recession and they continue to pump cash into their economy at a far greater rate of GDP than we do.

    Yet their employment numbers stalled last month and the month before that as well.

    Doesn't that mean, logically, that more stimulus in line with what you advocate wouldn't necessarily stop this bump in the road we are experiencing?  And Australia is not alone. Every country of note has hit the same patch, regardless of their domestic policies.

    If you are blaming Obama's policies for it happening in the US, what is your response to the fact that it is simultaneously happening everywhere else? The only logical response would be that the US controls the fate of the world, and that may be true to some extent, but it would not explain th fact that this happened in countries less tied to our economy generally.

    Sorry for the book, but I am genuinely interested in what the smart response is to my counter.


    I don't blame Obama's policies (5.00 / 2) (#96)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 05:56:45 PM EST
    I blame Obama and his economics team for enacting policies that do not counter the disaster he inherited.

    Two different things.


    2 and 3 (none / 0) (#89)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 05:17:58 PM EST
    are relevant to the job numbers and the other things we were discussing.

    2 is (none / 0) (#97)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 05:57:33 PM EST
    3 is just measurements, not actual events that effect aggregate demand.

    Where is your evidence (none / 0) (#99)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 06:06:36 PM EST
    to prove your assertion of why hiring has not been taking place?

    How does it set us up for a hiring push? (none / 0) (#93)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 05:35:58 PM EST
    Who is hiring?  Why?

    CST, the serious prognotsticators (none / 0) (#30)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:33:52 PM EST
    on oil had predicted in March or April that by July, oil prices would have stabilized and begun to drop. The decrease trend began well before the 60 million barrel release was announced.

    This release isn't 'free,' the oil still has to be purchased and processed. While releasing at this time may steepen the downward slope, the move in no way created the downward angle. What did? less uncertainty and less speculative pressure re: Libya. Why? Libya became a sustained operation, and the oil markets compensated. In part because of fairly flat worldwide demand.

    Spot oil speculation won't leave the market. It may not take place in New York, but the influence of speculation in Britain, Japan, Hong Kong and elsewhere can't be eliminated by a mere 60 million barrels being released.  Again, cause and effect... prices slope downward, THEN release of oil, not vice versa.

    Of course, you may think I'm a crackpot, but someone else may not, YMMV.


    According to AP, the release is (none / 0) (#31)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:40:43 PM EST
    30 million barrels, not 60, and this comes after 20 straight days of declining gas prices.

    Hmmm. Ollie, is this called closing the barn door after the cows are gone?


    half of it from the US (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by CST on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:47:44 PM EST
    half of it from other nations, I guess it was a coordinated effort.

    "The United States will provide half the release -- 30 million barrels of oil -- from its huge 727 million barrel Strategic Petroleum Reserve, an amount that is worth about 1.5 days of U.S. consumption, with Europe supplying 30 percent. The rest will come from Pacific OECD nations."

    I agree that the timing is late.


    Late? (none / 0) (#44)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:50:40 PM EST
    The timing is occurring because no one thought that the weird events of the summer would cause a global slowdown.

    My bet is if there was no earthquake in Japan and no rumbling in Greece, this wouldn't have been needed. But that didn't happen until recently.


    oil peaked in May (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by CST on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:01:35 PM EST
    and it was going up for a while before that.  The earthquake happened in March.  Greece has been rumbling for a while.  And the economy has been grinding to a halt for at least the last 2 months.

    Considering that it is designed as a short-term fix, yes, I'd call it late.

    I still think it may help in the short term, but I also think it would have helped more 2 months ago.  Timing does matter.

    Also... I really think your view of what is needed is seriously skewed.  This is the tip of the ice-berg in terms of what is needed.  My biggest frustration with Obama is that I think he usually (not always) heads in the right direction, he just does it on the wrong scale, and it's not effective enough.  It's like taking an antibiotic for 3 days and then stopping.  You may feel better at first, but in the end you're just making the disease stronger and more entrenched.  That doesn't mean you cut off all medical supplies and let the "body" die.  But you have to follow through or it's not going to be effective.  Right now, whatever you think of his intentions, or directions, you cannot argue that Obama has been effective on the economy.


    It was (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by lilburro on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:21:47 PM EST
    politically impossible to help the housing market.  It was politically impossible to choose the biggest number and negotiate down on the stimulus.  It was politically impossible to NOT talk up deficit reduction for months.  It was politically impossible to avoid the debt ceiling/spending cut talks.  Etc...

    That is (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:23:49 PM EST
    why I say ABG is a great advocate for the GOP. I mean if they are already getting what they want because Obama either agrees with them or feels compelled to give them what they want then why do you even need Obama in office? I mean if he's really that impotent in the face of the GOP why not just let the GOP take the rap for the bad policy.

    CST (none / 0) (#55)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:12:45 PM EST
    I think you, me and Obama all agree on what would have been the best course of action to deal with the crisis.

    I think me and Obama agree on what was politically possible, and you disagree.

    I've made that point from day one.

    Th ideas suggested here aren't wrong.  What I think is wrong about many here is the inability to balance achieving the goal, what is politically possible and remaining in power so that the real bad guys don't come in and make things worse.

    I (and apparently Obama) just aren't going to agree with many people here on that.


    politics follow policy (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by CST on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:22:25 PM EST
    If you implement effective policy, votes will follow.  Immediate political opinion polls are not how you should judge what is politicially feasible.  Opinions can change.  The best way to change opinions is through results.  Iraq is actually a good example of that.  Opinion polls supported the invasion at the time.  But it was terrible policy.  So even though politicians were doing the politically correct thing at the time, a lot of them ended up paying the political price for it anyway because eventually people realized it was terrible policy.

    The American people aren't always the brightest political crayons in the box. But one thing that will always get results is - results.


    Unless (none / 0) (#75)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:10:11 PM EST
    the policies proposed are long term and don't result in immediate payoff.

    Therein lies the obvious problem.


    So no long term policies. (3.00 / 2) (#109)
    by jeffinalabama on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 12:10:24 AM EST
    Okay, stupid has been used. You are an idiot. you mare almost too idiotic to breathe. Why not shut you pie hole? Are you ti stupid to do that, ABG? Have you no sense of shut-upness?

    Explanation to Jeff (5.00 / 1) (#118)
    by christinep on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 12:25:58 PM EST
    Because this blog promotes open discussion & interaction--and, illustrates its dedication to significant topics of a wide variety--and because I do not subscribe to the "low" ratings put-down that occasionally surfaces, it is not my practice to interject put-downs in the course of discussion. In scanning this thread & in reading the give & take here, the sum total of your comments (esp. noted in the one to which this responds) amount to name-calling. Pure & simple. Perhaps, you have had a very bad day. But, how many times can one use the derogatory words as you have done (e.g., "stupid" "idiot" "shut your pie-hole" "ignorant" and a lot more) without causing some to wonder whether this is degrading into a junior-high insult contest...a sad & without substance (at this point) name-calling situation.  

    I'm truly sorry to interject with this note--esp because so many of your other comments have been thoughtful (whether or not another reader agrees) and responsive to the issues. IMO.


    While I (none / 0) (#119)
    by Nemi on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 01:25:11 PM EST
    actually don't disagree with you on this
    I do not subscribe to the "low" ratings put-down that occasionally surfaces ...
    we all have our limits whether we're talking evil, stupid, or other. I guess I just reached mine here. :(

    But since the ratings system is part of TL maybe you should take your discontent up with Jeralyn? As for the namecalling: Did you read all comments leading up to this with an equally unbiased, open mind?


    Agree, Nemi about each of our limits (5.00 / 1) (#120)
    by christinep on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 01:44:15 PM EST
    And, yes, I read the comments last night & again this morning before posting.  Overall, it isn't that ultimate an issue to cause "running to teacher or mom." I stated what I had to say...and will let it stand as is.

    One addition: There may be all kinds of insults/put downs/insinuations/sarcastic remarks that each of us throw around to promote or support our strongly-held positions from time to time. That's life. It does seem a bit over the top tho to descend quickly to the "you are a dumb person OR evil person OR ignorant person OR <whateve>" We know that we don't have to resort to that kind of taunting & namecalling...and we know, I'm sure, that we really can't justify it. (We've all let it go to that level at some time in our life. For me, it is better not to dig the hole any deeper when I find myself in a namecalling contest at home or elsewhere.)


    I accept the criticisms from y'all. (5.00 / 2) (#121)
    by jeffinalabama on Sun Jun 26, 2011 at 02:26:04 PM EST
    Some of my comments were close to  or crossing the line of ad hominem. I try to point out what I think. As a human, I get frustrated and angry.

    I can't say I will not do this again. I think my comments were over the top. But I will not apologize, because I don't think they were incorrect or wrong. I will, however, attempt not to make similar ones such as "stupid stupid stupid" again.

    I reserve the right to tell a poster they have lost standing or credibility with me, and I defend anyone's right to tell me the same, so long as Jeralyn allows it.

    Cheers, and thanks for the rebuke. Losing my temper doesn't solve much on an excellent blog.


    such as the ACA? (none / 0) (#77)
    by CST on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:14:30 PM EST
    Because I'm with you, I support it more or less, but it was obviously bad politics.

    Stimulus funding on the other hand is the opposite, since it does result in (relatively speaking) immediate payoff.


    finally (5.00 / 2) (#65)
    by CST on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:29:58 PM EST
    let's look at something like the oil release.

    Your assertion is that "he couldn't have known" about global events.  Despite the fact that they were going on for months.  Then the follow up assertion is that "he's doing what's politically feasible" which is just not true when it comes to something like this.

    He is mucking up a lot of the small things.

    Also, finally re. politics.  Whatever he does the GOP is gonna scream.  Of course they were gonna fight kick and push over a larger stimulus.  They fight kick and push about everything.  A shrewder president would realize that makes them irrelevant because they will have the same reaction no matter what you do.  Instead, Obama compromises, and they still fight kick and push.  It's lose-lose.


    Please define (none / 0) (#56)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:13:59 PM EST

    do you know how to read a graph? (none / 0) (#52)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:00:45 PM EST
    Oil prices are down 9 percent since late May, not down 9 percent today.

    Take a look at this...

    and Bernanke's impact on the price of oil. "If speculators believe there will be further releases..." y'know, this isn't rocket science. A purely political move on the end of a downward turn.

    there was a 5 percent drop on Brent Crude today, but WTI was up. Let's wait till tomorrow and see what happens with Brent Crude... they kind gasoline and diesel and heating oil come from.


    And further down in the article. (none / 0) (#35)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:44:39 PM EST
    "Over 60 to 70 percent of the oil market is speculative," said Gulf Oil chief executive Joseph Petrowski. "When the market starts to perceive for one reason or another that either supply is getting more ample or there's going to be less demand or the economy is weaker, you flush out the speculative interest. So prices grind up and then we bang down."

    Hmmm. Yes. Drive the speculators out... no, the speculative interest perhaps, but with 60-70 percent of the market driven by speculation...


    Did you read in the AP (none / 0) (#37)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:45:30 PM EST
    where the oil price just fell through the floor?

    It was already headed there. (none / 0) (#40)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:47:54 PM EST
    Trend analysis.

    also known as (none / 0) (#43)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:49:07 PM EST
    Event History analysis or Failure Analysis, depending on whether done in medicine or engineering.

    There are events that occur (none / 0) (#47)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:54:50 PM EST
    that it is not reasonable to include in any realistic strategy.

    An earthquake causing a tidal wave that knocked out the supply and consumption of one of the strongest economies on earth is not something you typically build into your 12 month financial models.  Ditto the weather patterns we are seeing.  New study out on weather/economic correlation shows how bug an impact a season like the one we are experiencing can have, particularly during a recession.

    Now I will concede that they could have seen Greece coming.  


    Actually, while in the military. (5.00 / 2) (#63)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:24:04 PM EST
    I learned that contingency planning for the wildest sort of event is not only possible, but happens on a daily basis.

    The US military has plans to include the reversal of the poles-- i.e. the south becomes the north.

    The military has plans to counter an extraterrestrial invasion.

    One can and should foresee not only probable events, but improbable as well. The seven P's; Proper Prior Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance.

    contingency plans may fail, but if there are none, one runs around with hair on fire shouting "OOOH! AAAAAH! Pull it out of my a$$!"

    Just what has been happening for two frikkin' years.


    But major policy decisions (none / 0) (#76)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:11:25 PM EST
    are not made with the rarest contingency in mind.

    And for some actions, you can't have a contingency plan.  you have a general set of things you'd like to do if something goes wrong, but planning for every contingency is not only inefficient, it is generally impossible.


    Nonsense. (5.00 / 1) (#79)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:26:31 PM EST
    you come up with contingencies for events that may happen or not. It's a "contingency."

    I don't buy the Condoleeza Rice "Nobody could have forseen..." crap.

    Your statement invalidates any reason for plans and intentions departments. Maybe that's where you want cuts to occur based on spending.

    Inasmuch as it's "inefficient..generally impossible," that's foolish talk.

    Are you one of the president's advisors, by chance? If not, you ought to be... and I don't mean that as a compliment.


    Whaaaaa? (5.00 / 2) (#87)
    by nycstray on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 05:08:42 PM EST
    you mean you don't believe nobody could have forseen a seriously massive quake in Japan? I hope those folks are just as shocked when it happens in Ca . . .   :P  And we won't even talk about floods/tornadoes/hurricanes . . . .

    Contingencies (none / 0) (#82)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:30:39 PM EST
    1. The real world is not the military.

    2. Contingencies aren't automatic fixes. the fact that you believe a country changing event may happen doesn't mean that any fix you could dream up would hurt.  This isn't storming a bunker. This is handling the global economy, which has an almost infinite number of variables.

    ABG, obviously you're not smart enough (5.00 / 3) (#94)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 05:37:07 PM EST
    to understand that everyone operates with contingencies.

    You don't live in nor do you see the real world. Furthermore you are so full of shyte you ought to fertilize lawns for a living. you also fail to understand even the reason for contingencies.

    ABG, you have shown your colors. You don't think for yourself. You are an automaton, a robot, a proletarian, to use the Czech word for it.

    I can't believe you are so stupid-- yes, I use the term stupid-- to deny the need for contingencies. Contingencies exist to give a direction, you lummox. Contingencies get drawn up by businesses and by the government on a daily basis. If you are too wilfully ignorant to believe it, change your name to Condoleeza and apply for the provost's job at Stanford. there's a pod person in your place.

    I cannot believe the arrogant ignorance you demonstrate-- no, I can, because you are so willfully ignorant. You don't understand either the idea or framework for a plan, nor do you understand that real people exist, and you and your ilk don't want to examine, nor do you want to know, about the life experiences, the day-to-day struggles, and certainly not the challenges faced by the folks who ARE NOT on wall street eating lobster and foie gras, nor are they inside the village.

    I cannot help your brain damage. How it occurred does not involve me. But your brain damage and the pathetic leadership (for lack of any other term) underlie this administration. First, stupid approaches. Second, stupid policies. Third, stupid actions.

    Let's see... stupid seems to be a recurring theme here. Perhaps you might wish to change stupid to 'arrogant and terribly misinformed.' I don't care. It is of no consequence to me how you wish to label this putrid attempt at policy, not this pusillanimous pursuit of mediocrity.

    Your Obama embraces supply side economics at a more fundamental level than even Reagan. Your Obama has done more to create a two tiered economy that George W. He has failed in governance, he has failed internationally. He has failed the voters who placed him in charge.

    Here's the last thing I'll write. Your assumptions are based on at least one bad constant. Your a priori assumptions need to be challenged.


    People (5.00 / 2) (#98)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 06:03:49 PM EST
    make contingency plans. When my husband was out of work, we had plan A, plan B, plan C and plan d. Frankly, it's just common sense to have some plans because otherwise you are letting circumstances control you instead of you being prepared for the circumstances that might happen.

    I find it somewhat humorous (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by lilburro on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 06:19:39 PM EST
    that you would in reference to our Commander-in-Chief say that the real world is not the military.

    Even as the economy was recovering, we all knew it was a "fragile recovery."  They're the leaders of our country, I don't think it's too much to ask that there be a Plan B, if only to meet the economic projections from before this spring/summer.

    The Plan B as far as I can tell is entirely political, that Obama can sell the idea that this is how things had to be.  I do hope he can manage that but I don't find that a satisfying Plan B.


    Let me go further... (5.00 / 2) (#80)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:28:31 PM EST
    It's one thing to be ignorant. That implies not knowing the facts. It's a horse of another color to be willfully ignorant. Then you choose not to see the facts based on ideology.

    jeffinalabama (1.00 / 3) (#84)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:33:03 PM EST
    Now you are just being silly.

    The facts say that it is absolutely the way you see it with no deviations and no room for interpretation and no way in hell your perceptions or interpretations could be wrong, eh?


    That's what all ignorant people say.  Try this out:

    Raise your hand if you are so arrogant that you believe there is no way what you are saying could be wrong.

    [hand down]

    Get that hand up Jeff. Own it.


    Obama is doing this (none / 0) (#95)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 05:40:46 PM EST
    to help himself get reelected.  Apparently they finally are starting to get a little worried about how most of us either can't afford things now or look at what everything is now costing us and our wages haven't gone up and are beginning to freak out.....and....they want to cut our Social Security now too. There isn't anymore free and easy credit to try to use to make up the difference with anymore either.

    Didn't you mean to say (5.00 / 1) (#110)
    by Nemi on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 06:23:02 AM EST
    Apparently they finally are starting to get a little worried about how most of us "will react in the voting booth as we" either can't afford things now or look at what everything is now costing us and our wages haven't gone up and are beginning to freak out ...

    jeffinalabama (1.00 / 1) (#19)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:10:20 PM EST
    Then consider my credibility gone with you, whatever that means. I have said from the start that when people argue that I know nothing about the economy, taxes or various other economic matters, that they have no idea what they are talking about.

    I am a liberal surrounded by conservatives in my career for the most part.

    If that somehow makes me incapable of contributing to this discussion, feel free to ignore me.

    From my perspective, I (obviously) enjoy the company of those who disagree with me.

    You learn nothing by talking to people who think as you do, but if that's your way of learning, have at it.

    And I said from the start that my comment would be rd meat for all of those who believe Obama is a Wall Street puppet (as are his supporters). It would have served me better to say nothing if trying to pretend I was a super-liberal was my purpose here.

    I have never pretended anything and have been as honest and straight forward as anyone you will find in this forum.


    I believe you have stated (none / 0) (#22)
    by observed on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:11:33 PM EST
    that you dont' know anything about economics, except perhaps what you have read recently. Is this not accurate?

    No (none / 0) (#24)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:17:25 PM EST
    that is not correct.  

    I did say that I don't know everything about economics.  I also said that I hadn't read every BTD post and couldn't be expected to understand everything he's said in the past.

    But I know a fair bit about the economy, taxes and the way the financial system works in certain areas. Not all areas, mind you, but in certain areas, yeah, I know a lot.


    His career (none / 0) (#28)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:29:49 PM EST
    takes away his credibility....

    For me, if I were afforded the opportunity (none / 0) (#111)
    by Anne on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 07:11:45 AM EST
    to sit down with some Wall Street types, I would take that opportunity to confront and challenge - in a rational, conversational way - the events of the last couple years, talk about accountability for Wall Street's role in all of it, and have some pointed discussion about the current state of the economy and the near-total lack of any policy that appears to focus on Main Street's woes.

    And then, we could talk about real people, instead of data points - you know, bring the human element to bear, talk about Wall street's role in a housing crisis that has put tons of people out of their homes while the banks and brokerage firms that securitized those bad mortgages suffer no consequence whatsoever.

    And, had grudging respect for Obama been expressed, I might have had to say, "no kidding...if he were sucking up any harder to you guys we'd have to insist that you all get a room."

    Jeff, I don't think ABG is stupid in the sense that he lacks intelligence, I just think he has a huge blind spot where Obama's concerned, and cares only about Obama winning again in 2012 - everything is viewed through that lens - and what he just doesn't get - still - is that we don't care about who is responsible for the terrible policies, we just care about the policies themselves and how they are affecting the majority of the population - and can no longer support with enthusiasm - or at all - the person who is responsible, just because he's (nominally) a member of the Democratic party.  I keep trying to get across to him that the policy is what matters, not the person, but he only cares about the policy to the extent that it might help or hurt Obama's political fortunes.

    ABG is in a state of deep denial, and he will do nothing that puts that state in jeopardy.

    Clearly, he is not ready for an intervention.


    Funny, I heard the same story (5.00 / 2) (#27)
    by nycstray on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:29:29 PM EST
    on my local news. Seems the new thing is to shift the blame to Mother Nature, of all people.

    It's a fact (none / 0) (#32)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:42:49 PM EST
    The economic numbers out of japan and the impact of a ridiculously disasterous stretch of weather has greatly impacted our production and consumption.

    Try this riddle:

    If our policies are the cause of the economic soft patch, why is the soft patch occurring to every large economy simultaneously?

    If the short term slow down were the result of our domestic policies, we would expect countries exercising opposing policies to be experiencing no softness.  That is not the case. Asia is down. The EU is down. South America is down.

    The argument that this 1 quarter bump is a result of a policy misstep has to also argue that those policies simultaneously caused growth in the UK, for example, to slow.

    So if the theory I am proposing is BS, you give me your explanation for how it is happening simultaneously everywhere.

    Occam's Razor says my explanation is better, but let's test it.


    Ok.. (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by lilburro on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:45:08 PM EST
    is that what Obama is going to say in 2012?  The weather was bad?  

    Part of the problem is that there was no Plan B.  Things had to work well and conditions had to be ideal for their plans to pan out.  


    Which is it (none / 0) (#41)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:48:10 PM EST
    Either you are concerned with what he'll say in 2012 or you are concerned with what is actually happening?

    IMHO, Obama will say that the jobless numbers are falling and have been falling fairly consistently since his policies took effect.  He will argue that the numbers are scheduled to fall further and that the recovery was started on his watch and will continue.  He will argue that fixing the problems caused by the other guys takes time, and that th wrong response is to give the keys to the folks who screwed it up in the first place.

    And I think that will win it.


    Oh please (5.00 / 0) (#45)
    by lilburro on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:54:13 PM EST
    any conversation with you is tied to Obama's fortunes in 2012 so it's very rich to hear you ask "which is it."  

    The steps taken on the economy would be sufficient, maybe, if everything had worked out perfectly, but it didn't.  Do you anticipate that there won't be other world events to set back the economy's progress between now and 2012?  


    lilburro (1.00 / 1) (#48)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:57:03 PM EST
    The conversation I am having with you right now is not.

    What just happened was that I asked a question there was no answer to and the subject was changed to a topic that gave you better footing.

    The question remains: If our policies are the primary cause of the slow down, why aren't other countries with the policies you prefer immune to the slow down.  Even better, why is it that every other country is experiencing the same slow down simultaneously?

    If you have no answer, just say so.  Changing subjects is the cowards way.


    That's kind of my point(s) (none / 0) (#58)
    by lilburro on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:15:08 PM EST
    one, things were supposed to very gradually get better, and there was/is no Plan B for events that might impact that.  Not having a Plan B is dumb and irresponsible.  Two, it's our lack of policy that is the problem, STILL.  The biggest issue remains demand, and I don't see that the earthquake and recent weather events in the US have had much to do with that.  Gas prices seem to be hurting the economy yes.  But fundamental, longstanding issues remain that have to be fixed that haven't been fixed.  Bernanke himself blames it on other factors:

    "We don't have a precise read as to why this slower pace of growth is persisting," the Fed chief answered. "One way to think about it is that maybe some of the headwinds that have been hurting us, like, you know, weakness in the financial sector, problems in the housing sector, balance sheets ... some of these may be stronger and more persistent than we thought."

    That's what (none / 0) (#46)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:54:20 PM EST
    Bush Sr. tried in 1992 and how did that work out? Not well for him that I can remember. Obama has the same problem Bush Sr. seemed to have: a cold personality and tone deafness to the actual suffering that is going on right now among the voters.

    People don't want to hear things are getting better when they are LOSING their jobs and losing their houses. They are going to vote based on what's going on in November of '12 and short of the GOP imploding (not impossible) or some miraculous economic recovery, Obama is toast.


    Are we talking re-election now? (none / 0) (#50)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:57:52 PM EST
    I thought we were talking about the economy.

    You were (5.00 / 3) (#54)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:03:57 PM EST
    talking about what Obama was going to do in '12. Right? '12 is an election year. Right? You were talking about Obama was going to approach the voters. Right? It's all about Obama's reelection prospects with you anyway.

    That's all us black people (1.00 / 1) (#78)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:17:27 PM EST
    care about, right?

    Huh? (none / 0) (#86)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:48:41 PM EST
    Only black people vote? You're not making sense.

    But I do have a question for you. No community has suffered more than the black community under Obama. The black community has the highest rates of unemployment in the nation so why is his support so high in the black community? I know the reason that Glenn Ford said it was so high but what's your take on that?


    Easy question to answer (none / 0) (#112)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 08:40:50 AM EST
    Support is high in the black community for Obama because the black community isn't stupid enough to believe (a) that the guy in office for 2 and a half years is responsible for a crisis that blew up the year before he took office and (b) f*ck ups take more than 2.5 years to fix.

    Only dumb asses thought employment was going to go from 10% to 6-7% within 4 years. It takes time. Unemployment rates in the Depression were over 10% for like 10 years and then the war happened.  And FDR's policies during that period are considered a huge success.

    I've said from the start that no matter what policies are enacted, the road to decent employment levels is 5-7 years minimum regardless of whose policies are enacted.

    And c'mon man.  Did you really think I was going to say "'cause us black people are dumb and just support the black guy boss!"

    Get the f*ck out of here.


    You're (none / 0) (#113)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 09:17:55 AM EST
    pretty much calling yourself an idiot with your post because you are the one that was saying unemployment was going to go down to around 7% by Nov of '12 and things were trending in the "right" direction.

    The rest of us here were saying that we're going to have higher unemployment.

    So in essence you're also saying that it wouldn't have mattered if McCain had won the election because policy doesn't matter. You're kind of proving Glenn's point in a round about way.


    Not sure who was predicting ... (none / 0) (#116)
    by Yman on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 11:41:10 AM EST
    Only dumb asses thought employment was going to go from 10% to 6-7% within 4 years. It takes time. Unemployment rates in the Depression were over 10% for like 10 years and then the war happened.  And FDR's policies during that period are considered a huge success.

    I've said from the start that no matter what policies are enacted, the road to decent employment levels is 5-7 years minimum regardless of whose policies are enacted.

    ... unemployment would "fall from 10% to 6-7% in 4 years", but I do know of one certain angry guy who predicted it would be "in the 7's" in just under four.

    What does that make him?


    BTW - "From 10% to 6-7%" ... (none / 0) (#117)
    by Yman on Fri Jun 24, 2011 at 12:10:05 PM EST
    ... in four years"?  Presumably, you chose the 4 year period because that's the length of Obama's term, which is even more strange, since unemployment was only 7.6% when Obama took office.

    Wall Street bankers (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by Warren Terrer on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:24:40 PM EST
    support Obama, so we should too? That's your argument? Really? Thanks for the laugh :)

    Not to Rain On the Wall Street Parade (5.00 / 3) (#70)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:49:48 PM EST
    But every year has some sort catastrophic disaster.  Tunbamis, Katrina, 9/11, and on and on.  If anything, all the tornado clean-up should have slightly spurred employment, and the billions in Fed money should be stimulating some economies.

    The very people you are looking to for advise are the same ones responsible for the very mess they absolutely know how to fix.  Just because it makes sense, doesn't mean it right.  If they were actually running things, we would be a third world since the 30's.

    You should have asked them about how their billion dollar bonuses tax at the dividend rate are helping the economy.

    They blew it, anything coming out of their mouths I give about as much credit as anything coming from the Pakistani government.


    Well said, Scott. (none / 0) (#71)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:52:23 PM EST
    Im still waiting on a definition of "worse" because I want to know what worse is.

    I Meant Tsunamis (none / 0) (#73)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:06:37 PM EST
    The antecdote that sums up Obama I think (none / 0) (#17)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:06:09 PM EST
    The thing I think many have backwards here about Obama is that he's a conservative.  I strongly disagree with that.  I think he's one of the most pragmatic president's we've ever had.  Every decision that is viewed as selling out or conservative makes sense if you put on the hat of a pragmatist of the most extreme variety.

    The hated Ezra Klein said it this way:

    When presidents succeed in presiding over great change, they do so by recognizing an existing opportunity, not squeezing one from the stone of existing opposition. Obama correctly saw that 60 Democrats in the Senate and 240 in the House had cleared the way for health-care reform. Bush realized that 9/11 opened the door for the Iraq War. Clinton understood that the preferences of the Republican Congress and the economic growth of the '90s created space for a Democrat to balance the budget and reform welfare. Reagan sensed that stagnation had prepared the American people for a radically different economic philosophy. FDR knew to push America's intervention into World War II by incrementally moving forward with arguments based on new events.

    But this is the quote I got from Sullivan that crystallizes it all:

    "At a fundraising dinner in 2008, in Montclair, New Jersey, Obama told one of his favorite stories about F.D.R. . . . Obama recounted how when F.D.R. was confronted by the civil-rights leader A. Philip Randolph about the racial injustices in the country and the need for the President to use his powers and his bully pulpit, F.D.R. said he agreed but he would only take action when he was forced to do so by a popular movement. "Make me do it," he told Randolph."

    The last story applies (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by observed on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:10:26 PM EST
    if you interpret it correctly, with Boehner and Cantor "making" Obama do what he doesn't "want" to do.

    That misses the point of the FDR story (none / 0) (#25)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:19:22 PM EST
    The public is forcing certain issues. Boehner and Cantor are just political obstacles.

    But I think the point is that if the public believes that deficit reduction is an important concern, the pragmatist will find a way to stimulate that doesn't directly go against that opposition. And there are ways.


    Thats' not the point of the FDR (5.00 / 7) (#26)
    by observed on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:28:26 PM EST
    story at all.

    Deficit reduction (5.00 / 2) (#34)
    by lilburro on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:43:12 PM EST
    has become a so-called important concern because that's all people have heard about for months, from the GOP and from Obama.  And generally, they still want jobs addressed above all.  So for some reason, Obama decided to run with the 2nd most important concern.

    "Make me do it" is more applicable to the progress made on gay rights.  For more on that quote see digby.


    Heh (5.00 / 2) (#33)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:43:03 PM EST
    Ezra Klein.

    Yep (none / 0) (#57)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:14:31 PM EST
    Ezra Klein.

    Or as I call him when posting here, the Evil Ezra Klein.


    Not evil (5.00 / 3) (#81)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 04:30:07 PM EST
    But not saavy either.

    Actually (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:46:37 PM EST
    it all makes sense if you consider Obama a Reaganite. Once I realized that that's where his beliefs then it all became clear to me.

    ABG (5.00 / 2) (#105)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 06:57:47 PM EST
    is also a Reaganite.  He just doesn't realize it yet.

    The word "pragmatic" is (5.00 / 5) (#49)
    by observed on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:57:10 PM EST
    not relevant to whether Obama is conservative or not. What you seem to be saying is that Obama, by enacting far right policies through compromise, is being pragmatic.
    That's not exactly FDR-esque.

    N.B: any policy which by (5.00 / 2) (#51)
    by observed on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:57:56 PM EST
    today's standards is "conservative", would have been considered far right, even in Reagan's era.

    Another word that I have grown to (5.00 / 4) (#59)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 03:20:38 PM EST
    loathe: "pragmatic."  

    Just because something is deemed to be "pragmatic" or "middle ground," doesn't mean it is the best or right way to go.  It may be pragmatic, for example, to include Medicare cuts in the debt ceiling negotiations - as our dear friend to health care, Max Baucus is apparently in favor of (and we know whose bidding he's likely doing) - but is it a better solution than, say, letting the Bush tax cuts expire, which would obviate the alleged need to slash spending for programs that serve the needs of the old, the poor and the sick?

    I don't think so.  That something may be deemed "impossible" to pass the Congress doesn't mean it isn't worth exploring, and eventually fighting for, but "pragmatic" seems to have become more the path of least resistance than anything built on solid principles, and the solutions that flow from it seem to reflect that - and not in a good way.

    Conflict is not a bad thing when one is fighting for something that matters; pragmatism is beginning to border on indifference, and that indifference is leading to incompetent governance from almost all quarters.

    No, sorry - "pragmatism" is giving us some of the worst and most painful policy I can remember, and it's not a quality I admire or respect in this context.


    Went to the beach for awhile (none / 0) (#91)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 05:27:32 PM EST
    Should have just stayed at the damned beach and stick my head in the sand.  It was the middle of the week but Panama City is terribly dead right now when I make any comparisons to this time frame in past years.