Is It Too Late Now?


I believe all critiques of Obama that aren’t critiques of his macroeconomic management are slighting the role that poor macroeconomic management has played in exacerbating everything else. It’s certainly true that his team has faced an unprecedented level of non-cooperation from Republicans. But at the same time, Obama hasn’t shown much in the way of so-called “Rooseveltian resolve” to keep trying things and appears to have quite sincerely pivoted toward deficit control and structural reform last winter even with unemployment stuck at sharply elevated levels.

Is is too late to alter course? I fear it is. Listening to Tim Geithner has clearly been the President's biggest mistake and it is what imperils his reelection.

Speaking for me only

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    One of the weirdest MY (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by lilburro on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:20:04 AM EST
    posts I've seen recently...

    I know I've obtained a reputation in certain circles as an Obama apologist because I don't believe that disappointing policy outcomes out financial regulation or the public option or immigration reform or climate change are primarily attributable to poor legislative tactics or a lack of "leadership" on Obama's part. But that's largely because I believe all critiques of Obama that aren't critiques of his macroeconomic management are slighting the role that poor macroeconomic management has played in exacerbating everything else.

    What?  MY's reputation as an Obama apologist comes from defending Obama's legislative tactics as a function of Congress' limitations.  I can't recall him ever making the case that Obama's economic team was a constraint on his other goals.

    Well (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:21:59 AM EST
    revising history is what a lot of us do.

    Well (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by lilburro on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:39:53 AM EST
    all you have to do is look at the sidebar and see "Top Posts on Facebook" - "What A Difference Political Institutions Make."

    That's the angle that's been the crux of all of his arguments for the past two years.  

    If I didn't feel like MY and Ezra (I guess more Ezra than MY) strenuously tried to whip progressives into shape during the health care bill with that as their argument, I wouldn't be so annoyed.  The filibuster isn't my issue but we were a lot closer to a public option than filibuster reform, and yet what did I read at the time on MY and Ezra's blogs but long unrealistic articles on that subject.


    If this were a big problem with you (5.00 / 3) (#21)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:01:10 AM EST
    I wouldn't bother reading you. MY was wrong on the Iraq War, he has been an Obama apologist, and now that he is once again looking at the possibility of losing Baghdad he wants to do this kind of rewriting of his own history. I have no sane reason to waste any time reading the "educated" opinions of people of that caliber. There are ways to admit that you were wrong that inspire confidence and add to credibility. And there are ways to deny your complicity in misinforming and advocating that will cause me to teach my children that historically you have been simply full of $hit, so don't bother checking in with that talking head.

    I don't read (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by lilburro on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:32:32 AM EST
    MY on foreign policy...he's part of a group of people I read on domestic policy (Ezra, Drum, etc.).  I don't find any of those three guys to be completely discredited, they have their viewpoints, whatever.  But really, when has MY EVER made an argument like the one that was apparently the subtext of all of his critiques for the past two years??  I mean EVER.  I think I would've remembered that.

    I will probably die holding a grudge (none / 0) (#45)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:50:25 AM EST
    I was pretty frantic at times during the run up to deploying for Iraq. I was only beginning to read internet bloggers but I ran into Matt and Ezra early because I was terrified that this Iraq thing was all wrong. My Vietnam Vet Uncle was a Democrat too and he became very depressed at times watching what was going on. He said he had already acted in this play. But Democrat bloggers Matt and Ezra gave me reasons to remain calm and I did. It was a huge mistake. We were counting people who were in the 3rd ACR who had died in Iraq and it is enough to make me need some antidepressants so I don't think about it too much. I just can't, I will stop functioning dwelling on it. Then I find out these two guys were for the most part kids, and I used their arguments when discussing things with my Uncle, a person who survived Vietnam...was wounded...served as a Marine doing recon wounded on his second tour. I'm embarrassed to this day about that now.

    The biggest thing (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:21:24 AM EST
    was to not be bogged down in attempted comity with the GOP. Thus, while you can argue that the emergency measures of 2009 required accepting the inadequate stimulus of early 2009, gaming the reconciliation game was available for the budget.

    "Out year" tax hikes could have been used to "balance" the 2009 budget, which then could have included another trillion in stimulus.

    At this point (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:34:31 AM EST
    we all know Obama has failed on the economy and he's willing to or wants to continue failed supply side economics.

    Like you say BTD, his cake is baked on this. There's nothing he can do at this date to change the trajectory that he's continuing on. It would take nothing short of a miracle to turn the economy around by the time the presidential election comes around.

    If the economy recovers sharply (none / 0) (#15)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:53:42 AM EST
    does that mean that all of you were wrong?

    Second question: If there is a global double dip that occurs across all countries regardless of policy, does Obama take the blame for that?


    I would be wrong (5.00 / 3) (#17)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:55:20 AM EST
    But the opposite will be true if (when) that doesn't happen.

    Then you will have been wrong.


    As for Obama taking blame (5.00 / 3) (#19)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:57:17 AM EST
    well Hoover did. And rightly so.

    Look, the US is a leader of the world economy, not a follower. We are not helpless to the vagaries of the global economy.

    If Sweden isn't, then certainly the US is not either.


    Please Jesus (5.00 / 3) (#25)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:16:29 AM EST
    Let me wear the shame for the rest of my life that I was mean to this President before the economy recovered sharply. ABG, if this happens I swear I will tattoo on my forehead "I'm Sorry Barack". I get to pick the font size though.

    Heh ... as long as ABG does the same (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by Yman on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:57:16 AM EST
    Maybe, "I was wrong about Obama" - but the font size has to be legible, at least.

    He was offering to take any bets on this, although that was yesterday, sooooo ....


    I would wear this shame proudly (5.00 / 2) (#59)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:04:21 AM EST
    and take it with me to my grave if it would only happen.

    Buddhist appeals to Jesus? King's X? (5.00 / 1) (#113)
    by oculus on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 02:19:57 PM EST
    Funny though.

    Given it appears Obama admins. is collaborating with GOP dominated House and Debt-reduction obsessed D.C., GOP won't have to answer for tampering w/Medicare to the detriment of current beneficiaries.  Who is going to vote for Obama to be re-elected?  Seniors may no longer be concerned with Roe v. Wade.


    I'm horrible (5.00 / 2) (#126)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 06:36:46 PM EST
    I'm always making fun of appealing to Jesus. I also signed up for the next time the rapture is supposed to happen, sometime in October....that I will leave some old shoes on the sidewalks smoking from dry ice in them. Just to scare the Christians. I'm just not a good person.

    I figured kdog would be all over the (none / 0) (#128)
    by oculus on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 06:48:49 PM EST
    dry ice/terr*or*sm thing.  

    That's right!!!! (none / 0) (#125)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 06:34:40 PM EST
    Define "recovers sharply" (5.00 / 1) (#67)
    by Yman on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:12:49 AM EST
    You keep making these predictions of recovery without defining them.  What do you mean by "recovers sharply"?  Cause in 6-12 months, you'll be lowering the bar enough to try to make the claim that it happened, or that it would have happened if only X (an event beyond Obama's control) hadn't happened.

    Remember -- ABG's yardstick is (none / 0) (#80)
    by shoephone on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:26:59 AM EST
    unemployment in the 5% range by the end of Obama's guaranteed second term.

    that's right. I already promised him a beer (5.00 / 1) (#86)
    by ruffian on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:33:02 AM EST
    if he is right. I will add a "you're the man".

    I'm with MT (5.00 / 1) (#93)
    by Yman on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:44:50 AM EST
    I'll throw in an Obama logo tattooed to my forehead, with "Hope" and "Change" on each cheek.

    Yer getting very brave (5.00 / 1) (#127)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 06:37:54 PM EST
    You might end up looking like a DFhippy version of T-bow

    He didn't really predict that, ... (none / 0) (#88)
    by Yman on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:36:47 AM EST
    ... did he?

    To be honest, though, I'm more curious to hear his definition of a "sharp recovery", particularly in the next 6-12 months.


    My answers (none / 0) (#20)
    by lilburro on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:57:31 AM EST
    does that mean that all of you were wrong?

    Yes.  But I'm sure we will all argue about what constitutes a "sharp recovery."

    Second question: If there is a global double dip that occurs across all countries regardless of policy, does Obama take the blame for that?

    Depends.  If US economic policy doesn't protect us from a double dip, or prepare us for one, then yes, at least in part.  And certainly if there is a global double dip the US economy would have contributed to that in some way, no?  


    Yes (none / 0) (#22)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:08:55 AM EST
    it means we and a lot of people were wrong but this is something that is pretty easy to predict. There is going to have to be massive and I mean MASSIVE growth to change the trajectory. A piddling 1% over a whole year isn't going to do it.

    As far as the global recession goes, see Bush, George Herbert Walker circa 1992.


    A double dip (none / 0) (#27)
    by TJBuff on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:27:18 AM EST
    is going to be Obama's, rightly or wrongly.  Three years in is to long to blame Bush.

    If we have a second large (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:52:55 AM EST
    economic contraction (which many think is impossible to avoid as we shed backbone middle class jobs within city, state, and federal government) I think this President's position becomes very very precarious.

    Obama appointed Geithner (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by polizeros on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:53:27 AM EST
    The investment banks backed Obama early and with  more money than they'd ever given a candidate before. Read 'Bought and Paid For' by Charles Gasparino.

    Is it too late for the President to become (5.00 / 2) (#23)
    by david mizner on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:12:56 AM EST
    a different person? I believe it is.

    In order for the course to be altered, (5.00 / 2) (#36)
    by Anne on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:40:14 AM EST
    Obama would have to fundamentally change who he is, and I think the likelihood of that happening is about as good as the likelihood I hold a winning MegaMillions ticket for Friday's drawing.

    Obama lives in a world-of-the-possible that is defined by how much risk there is in taking a stand and failing, as opposed to doing what needs to be done and exerting leadership to expand that world; for reasons that are not clear to me, and might require an advanced degree in psychology to credibly speculate about, he would rather stay out of fights he thinks there is no chance he can win, and where he thinks a win is possible, will sell off and sell out and make deals on key elements that only end up further blurring the line between Democrat and Republican, liberal and conservative, and not improving the policy by much, just to make sure he gets the win.  Inevitably, those he tried hardest to please don't end up cooperating in the end, but they still manage to get most of what they wanted without having to vote for it.  The legislation ends up weak and inadequate, but that matters less, apparently, than that "W."

    Obama lives in a world of something-is-better-than-nothing, but seems content to keep the bar for "something" low rather than risk setting it higher.

    If he couldn't be bold on the economy when he had all the political capital, the will of the people and an energized Congress in his favor, he's not going to do it now.

    Choosing Tim Geithner to head Treasury should have told us all we needed to know about what kind of leadership Obama was going to provide on economic issues, and I have seen nothing in the years since that proves that wrong.

    He is who he is; he's always been this person.  With the Democratic Congress more or less failing to counter anything this president does or wants to do, I don't see much hope for things to get better.

    Anne (none / 0) (#50)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:55:06 AM EST
    Again, you are focused on Obama's personality and a bunch of psychobabble.  I am focused on the sweet crude oil in Libya we depend on, the video games and other technology roll outs stalled in japan because of the quakes, the fact that the nuclear industry, which was poised for massive growth (with dozens of projects near commencement globally), is at a stand still, the massive uncertainty around the euro until Greece is figured out, the fact that China, the biggest driver of global economic growth, has been screaming along at 9% while investors are betting big that that is going to slow down shortly, etc.

    At the hint of a Greek resolution, stock globally jumped this morning.  I don't think that means things in Greece are settled, but it does show the impact that those uncertainties and other uncertainties are having on market expectations and ultimately, growth.

    But you want to say it's all going down hill because Obama didn't when enough tough elections in Illinois or something.

    We're talking two different languages.


    That is true (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:02:44 AM EST
    You are speaking two different languages. You are speaking the language of the desperate seeking any possible way to explain away the tragedy unwinding before you in a way that keeps those you love blameless.

    ABG, stock market increases (5.00 / 1) (#95)
    by jeffinalabama on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:51:42 AM EST
    don't indicate a job based recovery, look at the market now compared to 3 years ago and the job situation as well.

    As to Libya, it's not much of an issue. Oil prices have been falling for six weeks now. demand hasn't spiked, the Libyan oil situation could be turned around fairly quickly.

    If you look back, I supported Obama on Libya, but wanted a stronger response, including the landing of a Marine MEU at the onset of our involvement. The bombing for a few days  and letting NATO do the bombing later feeds the impression that Anne has, I  think, that the president is not willing to commit to anything big.  For months you yourself have stated that Obama is an incrementalist, a pragmatist who "gets what he can get." Well, that's also psychobabble if you will. If his reach doesn't exceed his grasp, how can he 'progress' on anything?

    His vision dictates his policies, and his vision is small. His speechifying may have been great, but I'd love to, for instance, negotiate with him or play poker with him. He's not good at negotiation.

    He's a facilitator with some Woodrow-Wilson-esque autocratic tendencies. Look at his abandonment of the left-of-center to embrace the right-of-center. In his 'political calculus' the left couldn't do any more for him.

    So... at the end of the day, or three years down the road, what do we have? a non-recovery recovery, bookkeeping schemes, and passive, laissez-faire leadership.

    Greece-- once again, Greece is not a big issue. Look at the total debt Greece wants to restructure or walk away from. It will affect Germany and France (actually reverse the order for the amounts, France holds the most, then Germany), but it's small potatoes in the eurozone.

    Japan...the major issue from Japan has been parts supply to the automotive industry. Kanban supply chains do NOT keep parts or materiel in reserve, but depend on the constant making and flow (well, places like Honda generally have a 30-45 day reserve).  

    Technology roll-outs stalled in Japan? Well... who in the US profits from these? How do these help the US economy?  People need jobs to consume these products.

    Nuclear power at a standstill globally? Let's see a linkie, please. Germany has decided to forego nuclear. Okay, that's like saying California has decided to forego nuclear. It doesn't stop the plants already in operation. How many US reactors did Germany plan to build?

    I'm a nuclear energy supporter as long as the plants are Generation III or higher. The plants at Dai-Ichi are old plants, generation II GE plants, old technologies. Sure, Japan depended on them. Look what happened. a 100-year event took them offline, and the ones being refueled have not come back online, because that's a seriously long process, and there have been other, more important problems with the damaged reactors.

    Stock market... is a .5 percent upward swing a jump? Statistically speaking, no... it's well within the error term.

    Gas/oil again... the US demand is down on a four-week average. as such, inventories are being drawn down, which increases the price of crude. It's not Libya any more.

    Obviously the approaches by the federal government are not working. The economy is still stagnant at best, demand for the basic commidity fuel is down, the market is flat, and I'm waiting for the new unemployment numbers for last week to see if the quarter shows 12 straight weeks of increased first-time benefits.

    So, Anne talks about the president's characteristics in handling issues and problem solving, and it's psychobabble.  I disagree. He's a moderator. If nobody moves, he sits there, it seems, offering up the store to the adversary, to get them to move. Sometimes you need to fight.

    I never thought I'd say this, but we need a decider. I do not think of Obama as decisive. Every major foreign or domestic decision appears to be agonized over to the point where an action that may have been excellent a month ago has little or no impact now.


    Obama is a decider, and his priorities (5.00 / 3) (#97)
    by observed on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 11:02:45 AM EST
    are aligned with conservative Republicans.
    He shows a lot of spine when Democrats disagree with him, which almost never happens with Republicans. He's not spineless---he's Obama Wan Reagan.

    AngryGuy (none / 0) (#99)
    by The Addams Family on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 11:23:39 AM EST
    what Dick Durbin said

    that is all you need to know

    Obama knows it & he is looking out for number 1

    we will see if the banks decide to install a new number 1


    Should I post a link (none / 0) (#115)
    by jeffinalabama on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 03:00:56 PM EST
    to the Internationale here, and links to  anarcho-syndicalism, Tovarich Don?

    linkie failed... (none / 0) (#116)
    by jeffinalabama on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 03:01:49 PM EST
    Thought it might be (none / 0) (#119)
    by jeffinalabama on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 03:46:58 PM EST
    like that ;-)

    Let me put Billy Bragg up, or not.


    Haven't seen any indication that (none / 0) (#5)
    by MO Blue on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:22:26 AM EST
    Obama wants to alter his course. By his own words, he is president,  job programs are too expensive, he has a plan and by golly he is going to stick to it.

    Policies and appointments must be geared to show how business friendly Obama really is.

    Not sure (none / 0) (#6)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:23:48 AM EST
    I mean when you have no choice, should you pretend the "choice" is yours or not?

    That is really the only question for Obama now imo.


    One of the cornerstone tactics (5.00 / 3) (#12)
    by inclusiveheart on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:46:31 AM EST
    of this White House has been to portray this President as basically helpless - at the mercy of opponents, circumstance and whatever else they can think of to shield him from blame.  It will make for interesting campaign positioning.  

    I'm thinking that he'll pretend that he has no choice, but I am also thinking that up against even the craziest Republican candidate, that will make him pretty unappealing to a lot of those independent voters his team so covets.  That's a crowd that likes strength and certainty.


    Yep (none / 0) (#26)
    by TJBuff on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:25:34 AM EST
    Pretty obvious he had a plan in 2008 about what he would or wouldn't do in the first term and he's not going to let reality change it.

    Another (none / 0) (#8)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:35:23 AM EST
    point is that listening to Geither shows Obama's poor judgement.

    boy, you guys are just full of good cheer! (none / 0) (#9)
    by cpinva on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:37:05 AM EST
    to answer your question saul1, yes, there is a list, provided by krugman & stiglitz.

    no. 1 on that list was doubling the amount of the stimulous bill, from 750 bill, to 1.5 trillion.

    no. 2 was making the bulk of the stimulous funds actual payments, rather than 40% of it tax cuts or credits.

    in fairness to obama, he may well not have been able to push through double what he got, with recalcitrent republicans working diligently against him, but there's no evidence he made any effort to.

    is it to late to do anything? no, of course not, nothing's cast in bronze. the problem is obama seems mesmerized by geithner, and totally unwilling/unable to consider alternate economic paths. somehow (maybe his complete lack of formal education in economics?), the keynesian economic model, used by fdr to start digging us out of the great depression, appears to be a concept foreign to him, and certainly anathema to geithner and his banker/conservative/republican pals.

    until/unless obama snaps out of his trance, and gets advice from economists not beholden to friedman and the "chicago school" (discredited even by st. ronnie), his domestic policy is doomed to failure.

    They held their powder on the stim (none / 0) (#18)
    by inclusiveheart on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:55:52 AM EST
    battle and they continue to do so.  It is the bipartisan obsession that will be his downfall.  I mean how in the world is he going to run for President this time?  He can't pretend that he has no opposition in 2012.  In 2008 they played a game of sort of positioning him as something "other" amongst the Democrats in the primary and then again in the general against McCain.  But now he's part of the establishment and he is the President at the helm of a country that is limping along.  He is not an outsider now.  He can't be moderator in chief going into this election and expect to win.  He has to pick a side.  The logical side to pick would be the voters' side, but his economic and domestic policy doesn't track with that position - and even if he did try - his obsession with not going after the GOP would make any efforts to position him in that way completely ineffective because he would not draw the distinctions and paint the GOP in the proper dark light that they should be.

    When that stimulus battle was happening, Obama should have stood up like the adult in the room and said, "Alright, enough.  The county's fate hangs in the balance here and everybody has to drop the old ideological approaches and do what is right and what will work to help fix this economy."  Had he done that, he would have put the Republicans back on their heels at that time - and some of those Blue Dogs too.  He could have gotten at least a trillion and the investments in infrastructure that were originally in Pelosi's stim bill.


    agreed. (none / 0) (#120)
    by cpinva on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 05:09:23 PM EST
    i still don't get the whole "bi-partisan" nonsense. obviously, it hasn't worked. if you're a fan of einstein, we have an insane man for president, because he keeps trying it over and over again, clearly expecting different results.

    i understand him using it for the 2008 campaign, but once elected, he should have tried it once, when it failed to get the desired result, he should have moved on to partisanship, as anyone with a brain would have.

    pres. obama is a smart guy (and dresses well too), but just seems stuck in this nonsensical mode.


    "bi-partisan" nonsense is IMO nothing (none / 0) (#122)
    by MO Blue on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 05:38:54 PM EST
    more than smoke and mirrors used to rationalize passing the corporate centric, Republican agenda that Obama wants to pass.  

    Honestly, he had an opening (none / 0) (#123)
    by inclusiveheart on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 05:43:05 PM EST
    when he came into office where he could take the role as the "adult in charge" - meaning that he was in a position to direct the action "sensibly" and with straight-forward fact-based analysis.  He didn't have to be "partisan" or even speak in a partisan fashion.

    He could have said, "Look, what we need is an injection of cash flow now - not deferred tax credits that many won't be able to use - not stimulus rolled out over 16 months - we need to inject a large amount of cash into viable and common sense projects like infrastructure - we need to stabilize the economy and create jobs - NOW."  

    He didn't need to point fingers, he just needed to define the means and the ends of the stimulus effort.  All he really needed to do was make the case.

    That would have knocked the GOP on their heels primarily because so many Americans wanted the help, were frightened at the time and such a huge percentage trusted his judgment.

    I just read that a new Harris poll shows that only about 25% of Americans believe that Obama has done a very good or excellent job on the unemployment crisis.  That's a horrible number for him.  We'll see if other polls consistently bear a similar result out, but if I were advising him right now, I'd be telling him to get off of his high horse and start rolling up his sleeves.

    The President does have certain things that he can do like lifting the Federal hiring freeze and the freeze on Federal workers' salaries - both of which were done by executive order.  It won't fix anything, but it will alleviate some pressure.

    Anyway, there is probably more that he can do without Congress, but we know that he certainly can go on a charm offensive that does NOT defend the economic policy as if it is "okay" like he has done.  He could mirror the public's discontent and at least attempt to look like he is trying to make "our" case.


    Yep - I think he totally misdiagnosed (none / 0) (#129)
    by ruffian on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 07:30:53 PM EST
    the nature of the D.C. disfunction. it is not too much partisanship - it is government by lobbyists and shortsightedness, to name the first things that come to mind. He could have come in and tackled those first.

    None of this matters anymore. (none / 0) (#11)
    by Buckeye on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:43:17 AM EST
    What matters now is what President Romney will do in 2013?  And how bad can all of this really get?

    Obama (none / 0) (#16)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 08:53:58 AM EST
    will not lose.

    And what if (none / 0) (#24)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:15:47 AM EST
    he does? Are you going to be wrong?

    Obama has had only one tough race in his political history and he lost that one.  


    He will win ... (5.00 / 2) (#108)
    by Robot Porter on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 01:23:17 PM EST
    and that's much worse.  It will validate the current economic conditions as the new normal.  Not to mention the further encroachment on our civil rights.  And the wars, wars, and more wars as far as the eye can see.

    This has been a disastrous presidency.  A failure on all levels.  And, yet, they gonna convince the American public to give it four more years.

    A new high water mark the masochism of the American public.


    And what if he wins (none / 0) (#32)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:33:06 AM EST
    and what if the economy performs better than the folks here are predicting without caveat it will.

    The only upside to any of this is that some folks are going to be proven right and some folks are going to be proven wrong.

    Then we'll see what intellectual honesty really looks like.  If Obama loses or the economy isn't improving in 12 months, I'll be the first one here accepting my drubbing.  I won't admit that it was a mistake to support Obama (because given the facts i have now, I think that is the right call) but I will gladly admit that my predictions were wrong and my econ and political assumptions were faulty.

    My sense is that (a) if Obama wins and (b) if the economy is moving in a good direction, there will be a long list of people we all know here who will find a way to call it a lucky break or a fluke.

    I make bold predictions with the clear intention of eating crow if I am wrong.  Do you?


    In 1992, the economy grew (5.00 / 2) (#68)
    by me only on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:14:45 AM EST
    at over 4% each quarter.  H.W. Bush lost his bid for re-election due to the poor economy.  Why, because people don't care about the "economy," they care about unemployment.

    For unemployment to drop noticeably (and I an not talking about people leaving the labor force) by Nov 2012, 3rd quarter 2011 better be a stupendous quarter (6%+ growth).


    Tell you what (5.00 / 2) (#90)
    by Dadler on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:41:18 AM EST
    Here's how sure I am Obama is not going to do ANYthing approaching what you predict: if he does, I'll drop to my knees and let you flog me with a cat-o-nine-tails AND I'll give you half an hour to draw crowd.

    offer to provide the whip, (none / 0) (#121)
    by cpinva on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 05:10:35 PM EST
    and see if he takes you up on it! :)

    Here's the catch though (none / 0) (#38)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:44:31 AM EST
    It needs to start improving NOW to be able to help Obama in '12. We have extremely high unemployment and unless that starts changing drastically NOW nothing is going to help Obama. Yammering about things "improving" is going to make Obama look more clueless and out of touch than he already does with high unemployment.

    You have to realize that there are people who have been out of work for years at this point.

    People were suffering under Bush and hired Obama to fix the problem. Obama has not fixed the problem so they may fire him too.


    Predictions not that "bold" (none / 0) (#91)
    by Yman on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:41:43 AM EST
    You keep predicting the economy will be "markedly better" or a "sharp recovery", with varying time frames between the end of this year and 12 months from now.  If you don't actually define "sharp recovery", that's not much of a prediction.  What king of growth rate?  What unemployment rate?  When?

    The economy is not going to improve (none / 0) (#104)
    by Buckeye on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 12:25:57 PM EST
    over the next 12 months.  Nearly every economist and investor feels that way.  The question is, can he win in spite of that.  I say no.  He limped over the finish line against Hillary.  He needed Lehman Brothers to beat McCain (who still got 47% of the vote and 22 states).  McCain lost 2 states by less than 1% (NC and Ind) and two others by less than 3.5% (Ohio, Florida).  Obama is behind the generic republican in those 4 states by double digits.  All Romney needs is McCain's states, those 4, and then one of PN or Mich., or Virginia and one other state.  The only thing that will save him is if the Repubs nominate a nut like Bachmann.  Romney, Pawlenty, Huntsman all beat him and it will not be close.  Its the economy stupid.

    Interesting (none / 0) (#109)
    by Socraticsilence on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 01:43:29 PM EST
    you think the 2008 primary was easy then?

    When (none / 0) (#112)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 02:01:17 PM EST
    you have the establishment backing you and screaming for your opponent to quit it certainly helps.

    Of course, none of this matters now because Obama's been a failure in his own right on the economy. He's going to have a record this time and for better or worse, people are going to be voting based on that.


    Question I Keep Asking (none / 0) (#28)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:27:26 AM EST
    Commenters and BTD place great power in Obama's ability to change the trajectory of the economy (and to be frank, Presidents tend to overstate that power, which fuels the thinking).

    But how do you associate that "all economically powerful" notion, with the global economy?

    Personally, I believe that the economy will look substantially better in a year than it does now, but if you don't, shouldn't you be looking at global indicators, not just domestic.

    Prime example of what has me freaked out right now is this:


    Obama has very little rea infuence on this, but the most direct influence he has, he just used by releasing the strategic reserves (which I think shows the real concerns that the white house has about the next 12-16 months).

    If oil hits $115 or $120 a barrell, we are double dipping regardless of how much stimulus is or was pumped into the economy and it has to do with Libya, drilling and refining capacity and a bunch of other factors disconnected from actual demand.

    This is not to excuse the President and any blame he deserves for his policies. But I think that comments here can be frustratingly narrow in scope, particularly when housing surplus, oil, Greek default, Japanese economic stall, and a host of other issues outside of his control are just as, if not more, material to our economy and jobs outlook than the stimulus.

    In any event, I believe, as Bill Clinton recently noted, that there is enough money sitting in banks waiting to be spent to rescue our economy and the globe's economy.

    Our real focus should be in forcing (or making it unbearably advantageous) for those banks to release the funds they are sitting on.  That way the stimulus is pushed through globally and the taxpayers aren't taking the hit.

    Instead of our debating on government stimulus, which is a drop in the bucket. our time is better spent hammering the banks and using whatever leverage we have to get them investing and lending again.

    That's the real solution IMHO.

    I think it is too late now (5.00 / 2) (#30)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:32:32 AM EST
    I think it was not in 2009.

    I want to add that your comment about "money sitting in banks" fundamentally misunderstands what the problem is - which is a lack of demand.

    Banks don't spend money to spend it. They lend it to companies and folks who will spend it.

    No one is spending at adequate levels and that is why we needed and need government spending to fill the gap.

    Yes, this is basic Keynes but people seem to have forgotten it.


    Demand (none / 0) (#37)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:42:50 AM EST
    is a part of the problem but not as much as you think. If you look at the fundamentals (and look at things globally) demand is back. China is set to grow at 6% which for a country and economy that, is a massive driver of global demand.  Second tier countries have hit unprecedented levels of growth the last 6 months.  All of the fundamentals of a recovery are there.  Holding it back is Greece, Japan, US deficit uncertainty and other issues that will resolve themselves one way or another over the next 6 months.

    Let me just say on the record so people can pound me on it later if they wish: we will get a jolt of confidence once the deficit issues are resolved. We will get another jolt once Greece is resolved. Once those two issues are addressed, the economy (globally and domestically) will restart the march upward that had been occurring prior to the past three months.

    I am betting real world money, not anonymous blog commenter street credibility, on that, so if I am wrong, be sure I am paying a bigger price than the crow I will eat here.

    Found that Clinton quote from this week:

    "There is enough money in the banks and the corporate treasuries to get not just the United States but the entire world out of the economic doldrums that we're in," Clinton said during a conference call. "There's more than enough there to stimulate not only an American recovery but a global recovery." - Clinton


    Well, if confidence fairies actually exist (none / 0) (#42)
    by TJBuff on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:48:04 AM EST
    I will eat a lot of crow.

    Confidence fairies (none / 0) (#54)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:01:34 AM EST
    I think that concept is overused, but I have clients that make such decisions that are waiting on the sidelines for the time to make real investment.

    Give it whatever silly name to discredit it you would like, but the concept is very real.  People spend money when things are settled, be it the average consumer of the CFO looking at asset and risk allocation.


    They'll invest (none / 0) (#82)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:29:53 AM EST
    when demand picks up. Not before.

    If you believe (none / 0) (#81)
    by lilburro on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:29:06 AM EST
    confidence saves, then I guess we'll find out.  I don't believe that.

    In the meantime, another Clinton quote:

    "I think the stimulus did as well as it could have done -- there just wasn't enough of it."


    Also it seems to me (none / 0) (#89)
    by lilburro on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:37:34 AM EST
    relying on confidence is a great vehicle for GOP priorities, esp. as "dealing with the deficit" now means "slashing spending."  Fixing the economy is a progressive goal, but I am not certain relying on confidence is the most progressive way to accomplish that (or the way to accomplish that, period).

    The one who has leverage over banks (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by TJBuff on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:33:52 AM EST
    or rather had it in 2009, is sitting in the WH.  And piddled it away.  Which is kind of BTD's point.

    I don't even understand your post (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:35:06 AM EST
    It has no organized direction and no real solution. It seems to me that you are now suddenly having an MY we are about to lose Baghdad moment too. Oil is one market of many, one indicator of many many many others that have been flashing red seemingly forever now. Hammer the banks? This administration is the one who legally has allowed them to revamp their bookkeeping to show they are not having any problems. Hammer them with what?

    Tracy (none / 0) (#39)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:44:45 AM EST
    I have said this before, but sometimes there is no solution.

    I don't think there is a solution Obama could have (in the past or present) proposed that would have us sailing happily towards recovery without the downturn caused by global issues.


    Yes (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:54:34 AM EST
    we get it. Obama is simultaneously someone who is impotent to do anything and someone who has passed the more "progressive legislation" evah.

    I don't think he can do everything (none / 0) (#56)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:02:48 AM EST
    His biggest critics do.

    The rest are primarily arguing that overblown expectations are unreasonable.


    ABG (5.00 / 3) (#53)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:00:34 AM EST
    There were many many opportunities that he chose to pass up that would have dramatically changed the economic landscape. He didn't fight for things that he needed to fight for when he had the power, and he did have the power. He chose to listen to Summers and Geithner. Since Summers is certainly the smarter of that duo he knew he needed to get the hell out of that White House when no green shoots were actually there or go down in history as being the corrupt banking advocate that got us all into this and blew us all up. That's okay though, Timmeh is happy to be the white knight in this play and he will see this through. Somewhere on the Harvard campus is someone who is eternally grateful that Tim Geithner is choosing to do this :)

    All I can say is (none / 0) (#61)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:05:43 AM EST
    we will see.

    For the good of all, everyone here should be rooting for me to post a triumphant "I told you so!!!!" comment in 6-12 months.

    It'll be bitter-sweet to have to listen to an ABG rant, but you should be rooting for it.

    Unfortunately, I think that there are some here who actually want Obama to fail to prove a bigger point.  That's when I know things have gone off the rails.


    I thought I made it pretty god damned clear (none / 0) (#65)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:08:58 AM EST
    that I will celebrate that by becoming forever tattooed with the moment on my forehead....Forever!

    No tattoo needed (none / 0) (#71)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:18:03 AM EST
    If I can just get a "you the man" or two, I'll be good.

    I only give "you the man" to my husband (5.00 / 3) (#73)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:22:42 AM EST
    The President isn't my boyfriend :) I hired him to do a job that he is currently sucking at right now. I can apologize though if I'm being too hard on my employee and it turns out he was secretly working very hard behind the scenes to do his job, and I will.

    Of course YOU don't (none / 0) (#58)
    by Yman on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:03:45 AM EST
    Obama can't waive a magic wand.  Obama isn't King.  Obama can't really do anything to improve the economy.  The bad economy is the result of outside forces that Obama has no control over.

    Lather, rinse, repeat.



    Yman (none / 0) (#63)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:08:10 AM EST

    Obama does have an impact.  A large one. I am simply arguing (as always) that the extremes are wrong.

    He doesn't get all the blame and he should be completely exonerated.

    If the global economy improves drastically, you won't see me here arguing that Obama should get all the credit either (although I'd love to for a number of reasons).

    He's a part of it either way.  But he is not the driver of the global economy, which is really what drives our employment numbers to some degree.


    "should not be" (none / 0) (#64)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:08:26 AM EST
    How much straw ... (none / 0) (#94)
    by Yman on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:47:20 AM EST
    I am simply arguing (as always) that the extremes are wrong.

    He doesn't get all the blame and he should be completely exonerated.

    ... do you burn through in a week?


    Several comments, ABG: (5.00 / 5) (#70)
    by Anne on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:17:56 AM EST
    First, according to an article I posted a link to the other day, House Democrats asked - no, pleaded with - Obama months ago, when gas prices were going through the roof, to release some oil from the Strategic Reserves.  So,when does Obama make the decision?  When gas prices have already started to fall.

    Second, there were - and still are - things Obama could do with regard to the housing crisis, many of which have been discussed here, but Obama has stuck like glue to one of the worst programs ever - HAMP - that has made things worse for a lot of people who mistakenly thought they could get some help.  And that has been more or less the sum total of the "help" he has been willing to provide, which seems stunningly inadequate given the size of the problem and the ripple effect it has had on the economy.  He has stayed remarkably and, in my opinion, negligently silent on the matter of foreclosure fraud.  Not too hard to understand when you realize that, above all else, the banks and Wall Street are to be protected at all costs, even if it continues to depress the economy.  

    Third, when there are things outside one's control - and there always are - it is even more important to take active, bold and principled actions to control the things one has the power to control; shrugging one's shoulders is not one of those things.  Going to the well of old actions that haven't worked before, believing that "this time" they will work, is inexcusable, really; if Obama were a CEO in the private sector, he'd have been fired a long time ago.

    Fourth, I have money in the bank, and you know what I'm doing with it?  Nothing.  Why?  Because the economy is too unreliable and unstable, I don't have a clue what things will look like in 8 years when I can allegedly retire, and as much as I would like to be pumping money into the local economy, I've set aside a lot of my "wants" in order to be able to take care of my "needs."  I'm not alone - multiply me by probably millions, and that should tell you something.

    Finally, the last part of your comment nearly made me spit tea all over the keyboard; Obama's mission has been to protect the banks, to shelter Wall Street from accountability - you think the guy who hired Timmy My-Sacks-are-Golden Geithner is going to push the financial sector to "get them" to do anything they don't want to do?

    Please, that's just delusional.

    I think it's entirely possible that Obama can and will be re-elected, but I don't think it's going to be because Obama finally emerges from his political phone booth to save the economy, but because, in the end, he will be judged not as bad as his opponent; for what it's worth, I don't regard "not as bad" as being the equivalent of "good," or as validating his performance as much as hedging against the fear of the alternative.


    What do you mean by "hammering (5.00 / 3) (#79)
    by observed on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:25:47 AM EST
    the banks", specifically?
    Is Obama "hammering the banks". Well, he's hitting them up for campaign donations.. does that count?

    2012 is in the GOP's hands now. (none / 0) (#29)
    by TJBuff on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:29:42 AM EST
    If the economy stays where it is, and they suck enough, Obama wins.

    If they come up with someone less (none / 0) (#35)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:39:34 AM EST
    crazy, Reaganesque, they could (how can that person win the nomination though, the Republican party and base has been nuts for too long now and insanity has set in with them much like this current administration has allowed off the charts unemployment to become entrenched?) If they nominate someone though who can pivot believably into moderation after the convention, yeah...they could win this, particularly if we have a pronounced double dip between now and then that the people physically feel before election day.

    Don't put (5.00 / 2) (#44)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:50:05 AM EST
    it beyond the GOP elite to change the primary schedule or start the drumbeat of "Bachmann can't win the general election" to get the voters in line.

    I've seen it happen time and again in SC. The GOP elite come out and say vote for candidate X and the voters come out and vote for said candidate baa...baa...baa...


    I'm 60 (none / 0) (#46)
    by TJBuff on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:52:05 AM EST
    All I can tell you is in my experience, when push comes to shove, the GOP nominee is never a wingnutcase, no matter how many are floating around.  The big money boyz don't allow that.

    I should have said "obvious wingnutcase" (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by TJBuff on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:54:16 AM EST
    Secret ones can make it.

    They have all become so crazy lately (none / 0) (#48)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:54:22 AM EST
    I'm reluctant to bank on it :) But if they choose wisely our President could be in a load of trouble.

    Prior to 2010 (none / 0) (#110)
    by Socraticsilence on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 01:51:10 PM EST
    I'd agree with you but last year we literally watched the GOP sacrifice the Senate because of the crazies- I think the moneymen are having a Dr. Frankenstein moment right now.

    here's the problem as I see it (none / 0) (#60)
    by CST on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:04:23 AM EST
    with someone "less crazy".  Not a single one of them is "less crazy" on the economy.  I'm not sure it will matter, but that's what it is.

    I mean just look at Mitt Romney.  Do you really see him connecting with people on economic matters?  John Edward's haircuts have nothing on him.  All of his vaunted "business experience" is that of a job cutting CEO.  And when he was governer of MA, the economy here $ucked.  In some ways things were worse back then because the tech bubble was much bigger locally than the housing bubble.  I just don't see how that will help him when the economy is the major issue.


    What scares me is if someone (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:07:20 AM EST
    says they will do something. Hell, even if it is crazy it is more than Obama is doing which is nothing....this will eventually iron itself out he insists. Desperate people will vote for someone saying they will do something over someone who has watched them all suffer and has really done nothing other than bail out Wall Street and banks.

    Nope (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:21:10 AM EST
    Romney doesn't connect with the voters on economic issues but neither does Obama so that's really a wash. Both of them come off as completely unfeeling, out of touch technocrats.

    The possibility with Romney, (none / 0) (#66)
    by dk on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:09:48 AM EST
    and maybe Huntsman (don't really know much about how's going to campaign on economic policy yet) is that their discussion of the problems and the solutions they offer won't sound all that much different from Obama's discussions/solutions (sure, Obama may probably talk left-wing populist on the stump now and then, but I'm talking about his discussions/attempts through his actions as President).

    Then, it would come down to how much the voters tie the economic hardships they've faced the last four years to Obama.  Will they want to throw out the old guy if the new guy sounds more confident of his ability to force through roughly the same austerity plan?

    I'm not in any way predicting how that would go (I think predicting this far out is completely worthless), but I'd be nervous if I was working at Obama campaign headquarters.


    yea (none / 0) (#78)
    by CST on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:25:30 AM EST
    I'm secretly hoping that it will force Obama to the left during the general election.  I don't know how much that will matter post-election, but it would be nice to at least have someone making the case again.  It could also potentially help with the house and senate.

    I have no idea how this will play out either, my gut kind of thinks Obama will end up taking it, but who knows.  It's a shame that we're at this point.

    I think when push comes to shove, Obama will have a slight edge on policy - in terms of what the American people want.  But as you point out, that doesn't mean they will vote for him.  We already know at least 40% of people never will.


    Yeah (5.00 / 1) (#83)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:29:57 AM EST
    but even if he goes left during the campaign he won't be credible to most voters because of his record. Everybody knows his record and this point and I guess some people will buy into the "secret plan" train of thought but how many is yet unknown.

    "..even if he goes left during the campaign (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by KeysDan on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 12:06:37 PM EST
    he won't be credible to most voters because of his record." The president is in the campaign and he still has an opportunity to, if not go to the left (which is unlikely), to at least go to the center.  We are now at a pivotal and dangerous stage in the debt ceiling discussions, and President Obama can, as do the Republicans, take issues off the table.  For basic starters, he should say social security is not up for discussion at this point. Even his stacked Catfood Commission indicated that social security did not need to a part of deficit discussion (and, of course, we know that no financial urgency exists, just an ideologic one).

    Moreover, the president should capitalize on, rather than bail out, Paul Ryan's coupon clipping, kill Medicare blunder subscribed to by all House Republicans.   Medicare "reforms" should be jettisoned at this point as well, on the basis that Medicare costs and health care costs are of one, and the Affordable Care Act has provision for costs controls and savings, and we need to let the Act kick-in and evaluate and implement the results. And, substantial "savings" have already been wrung out of Medicare as a part of the Act.  Of course, the usual cries about Medicare fraud can be a part of the discussion with perhaps the hiring of consultants who know the ins and outs of such matters, such as Rick Scott (also a nod to bipartisanship).

    Since a conscious decision seems to have been made to ride out the unemployment numbers, with, perhaps, some efforts that might show a downward trend, lines in the sand on popular security programs would not only reflect positively on his record, but give some confidence that we are governed by  vertebrates.  


    Well (none / 0) (#103)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 12:20:00 PM EST
    that is something that he could do but is NOT going to do according to the presser today. He is proposing cuts in Medicare and Medicaid.

    Yes, (none / 0) (#105)
    by KeysDan on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 12:36:43 PM EST
    and a new bailout plan:  Help the Republicans out of the hole they dug themselves with Paul Ryan's shovel.   Lost a big edge for Democrats, but he must think this shows his deficit cutting bona fides.

    I think it's important (none / 0) (#85)
    by CST on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:31:48 AM EST
    to make the case to the American people for that form of government.  I also think it may help with downticket races.

    and I also think (none / 0) (#87)
    by CST on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:34:36 AM EST
    his policy record is going to be to the left of what Mitt Romney is offering.  This is the man who wrote a big op-ed telling the government not to bail out detroit.

    So that (none / 0) (#98)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 11:05:00 AM EST
    helps Obama in MI but not in the rest of the country.

    you don't think (none / 0) (#100)
    by CST on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 11:31:04 AM EST
    anyone else cares about Detroit?  Or the American auto industry?  Especially since he was okay with Tarp and the bank bailout.  I don't think the optics of that are good anywhere.  

    Also his record on jobs as governer just isn't very good.  We had one of the lowest growth rates in the nation under Romney, and one of the fastest growth rates in the nation now.

    Obama hasn't been great either, but in a way he benefits from the fact that there is no comparison.  Where as with Romney you can hold up his record against a different governer in - some ways - tougher economic times.


    Actually (none / 0) (#102)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 12:17:47 PM EST
    no I don't think people outside of MI really care about Detroit. They're too busy trying to make ends in whatever state they live in right now. People here in GA can't really be concerned with MI because we have 9.9% unemployment right here. Or people in CA who are suffering high unemployment. People are focusing on their own basic needs right now and just aren't looking past that right now IMO.

    Last I heard, 12.1% here in CA (5.00 / 1) (#124)
    by nycstray on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 06:13:27 PM EST
    how's that for rockin' some econ recovery . . . ?

    So nice of him to visit us for campaign handouts . . .


    Obama can play left, he just can't (none / 0) (#92)
    by Anne on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:42:29 AM EST
    really do left; Republicans don't do left either; if anything, they play moderate and then do conservative.

    Seems like a presidential election would be a really good time to have more than a dime's worth of difference between the candidates, wouldn't it?

    I think I need a bumper sticker that reflects how the whole thing makes me feel:

    Election 2012: Yeesh

    He can barely even play left (none / 0) (#96)
    by shoephone on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:59:37 AM EST
    His acting skills just ain't that good.

    TJBuff (none / 0) (#40)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:45:22 AM EST
    Correct.  And the GOP will suck enough.

    Realize the corollary (none / 0) (#43)
    by TJBuff on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:49:54 AM EST
    If it's Romney and a double-dip (or even a flatline) he's toast.

    It will be Romney (none / 0) (#52)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:57:54 AM EST
    and I believe what we are experiencing now is the double dip.  

    I believe that some slowing was going to happen at ome point and think Obama was remarkably fortunate that it happened now. I have read no economist that believes that at this time next year we won't be making steady positive progress.  If the stall had occurred then, Obama could more easily lose.

    People understand, in poll after poll, that this wasn't his fault.  He was to show progress, and the way this is going to time out, I think he'll clearly be able to do that.


    You haven't (none / 0) (#69)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:15:06 AM EST
    read Roubini then who predicted the crash in '08. He says we are going to have 9.8% unemployment next year and only 1% growth.

    That would be flatline (none / 0) (#74)
    by TJBuff on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:23:07 AM EST
    Just like Japan's lost decade, only with twice the unemployment.

    Japan is flat lining right now. (none / 0) (#77)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:25:11 AM EST
    If Roubini is right (none / 0) (#75)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:24:33 AM EST
    Obama will certainly lose.

    I do not think Roubini is right. He predicted we will be at 9.7 or 9.8% employment this year.  He is likely to be off by a full percentage point by year's end.


    Based on what? (none / 0) (#84)
    by observed on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:31:43 AM EST
    A List of Things Obama Could've Done (none / 0) (#41)
    by BDB on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:46:52 AM EST
    by Ian Welsh (who pretty much predicted everything that has happened) can be found here.  Note that a lot of these things did not actually require Congressional approval.

    Not too late for anything except (none / 0) (#57)
    by ruffian on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:03:06 AM EST
    preventing massive global economic disruptions due to climate change.

    Have a nice day, all.

    Obama is not a leader ! (none / 0) (#76)
    by samsguy18 on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:25:07 AM EST
    Some as scripted and plasticized as Obama cannot lead !

    It sure seems too late to me (none / 0) (#106)
    by RickTaylor on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 12:57:52 PM EST
    When we have Democrats proposing 2 trillion dollars of in spending cuts and 400 billion in revenue enhancers, it sure seems too late to me. I don't know about Obama's re-election, but this is not good for the country regardless.

    Why is is a surprise ... (none / 0) (#107)
    by Robot Porter on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 01:15:19 PM EST
    that when you hire a Mad Ave candidate you get Wall Street policies?

    Is it too late?  It is for me.  A leopard can't change its spots.

    Yup Si Oui. (none / 0) (#111)
    by seabos84 on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 02:00:07 PM EST
    IF he had had GREAT tactics, GREAT strategy, GREAT messaging, he might have been able to start to move 1 of the huge foundational economic disasters du jour in a better direction - and he would have had to have fought off the other foundational disaster groups ganging up on him so he didn't come after them.

    Look at our economy from that 100,000 foot level -- look at the foundations - energy, housing, health care, security, transportation, education, banking finance - WHAT isn't rotting? WHAT isn't going to hell in a hand basket?

    NO ONE could have radically changed 1 of these huge foundations, but, they could have kicked & cajoled & coerced & pleaded & begged & threatened ... and gotten it moving in a better direction.

    Geithner, Summers, Rahm, Bernanke, ... GIVE ME A F'KING BREAK.

    Clinton III, DLC Blue Dog NEO LIB Sell Out Heaven.

    ONE huge problem 0bummer has is that too many people don't trust him - he's just another lying double speaking f'king fraud making excuses while private jetting around to chow down on prime rib, lobster and caviar.

    He can fire side tweet away from now till hell freezes over, and for tooooooooooo many THE QUESTION will be, if and randomly when they pay attention - THE QUESTION will be:


    He really should just focus on LOTE LOTE LOTE - as long as a 13th century loony tune like bachman is his opponent, he'll get all kinds of LOTE voters -

    NO ME, but, there are plenty.

    2010 was a pivotal year for me - I wrote in "medicare for all" INSTEAD of checking off the names of usual crowd of Washington political pathetics, pathetics wasting "leader" pay in the "Democratic" party while mouth breathing right wing talking points - and while I lost, at least I don't vote for patty chris ron gary dwight jim jay
    maria && am now stuck listening to their whiny ass excuses for losing, again, to lying thieves.