L in the Southeast

L in the Southeast
Location
Atlanta, Georgia, United States
Birthday
November 04
Title
Retired PR Director
Bio
I am a retired Public Relations professional who now writes purely for fun and catharsis. I covered most of my memoir-type pieces in the first three years here. Lately I have dabbled in politics, current affairs, pop culture and movie reviews. Life is my muse.

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JULY 23, 2011 5:20PM

OK, You Guys. Knock it OFF!

Rate: 39 Flag

unreformable, obstinate, wayward, cussed, obdurate, unrepentant, unregenerate, refractory, perverse, stubborn, contrary, infantile, boneheaded, moronic, meatheaded, infuriating, off-pissing

 

And these are the nicer adjectives that come to mind when describing the antics of the insufferable politicians in our embarrassingly asinine nation’s capitol.

When I was younger and stupider, I was a “right fighter.”  I would argue my position relentlessly and endlessly, even with glaring examples of my wrongness dangling in my face.  Unless and until my opponent conceded unequivocally, my heels remained dug, my guns remained stuck and my mind, what there was of it, remained as rigid as a cinder block.

Fortunately, mostly for me, but also for those who had to try to live and function around me, I learned with age to entertain the unlikely possibility that there could be another way of looking at the situations.  My teacher? A brutal combination of hearing the words of my parents in spite of my efforts to the contrary; overhearing myself being described in terms that make the list above seem complimentary; and learning the concept of win-win.

Somebody must have noticed by now that the so-called leaders in our Congress are acting like recalcitrant ninnies while the rest of us sit trembling in fear of what will happen when our national finances enter the same territory as the finances of Joe the Plumber and the disgraced educators in Atlanta Public Schools. 

Now that I have temporarily plunged headlong back into the odiferous darkness of corporate America, I am all too conscious of the fact that I am paid to spin the English language to the benefit of my master client, just as Boehner and Company choose ad nauseum to convert the word “revenues” to “taxes,” regardless of context.   Now that I am being influenced by the results compiled from focus groups conducted by so-called public affairs experts and compelled to couch my words so as not to step on the  land mines of loaded buzz words, I realize that the game of chicken being played in DC has a bunch of turkeys as players.

I fail to understand how the Republicans live with themselves, knowing that millions of disabled and/or elderly citizens could possibly go without their Social Security payments because their billionaire corporate ringmasters don’t want to go back to their pre-George W tax levels .  Is the concept of compromise only useful to them when it is applied to the Democrats?

It is time for the children in Washington to put on their big-boy and big-girl underwear and get on with the business of grown-ups.  I am all for spending cuts.  They have been needed for decades anyway, but the times call for the same austerity in government as they do for the mini-budgets of normal people like you and me.  But to ask the elderly and sick to bear the brunt of everything while fat cats and their kittens continue to amass millions is just wrong. 

And what does Boehner do?  That paragon of conservative virtue stomped his drunken big foot like the school ground bully he’s trying to be and ran home to pout.  Good job, Johnny!  Good job.

NOTE TO PRESIDENT OBAMA:  Don't even think about caving to these megalomaniacs!  The majority of the people -- the ones who voted for you and the ones who didn't -- are behind you on this one.

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That they keep calling the end of Bush's rollbacks "tax increases" really pisses me off.
I mean, reall-l-l-l-l-y-y-y-yy--y pisses me off, especially as no doubt this was intended back then to be the Repub spin now.

Really pissed off over here, I'll say again.

(I have to smile at the thought of your stubborn chin though...I have one too : ))
That they are! If he caves in and puts most of this on the back of us poor and disabled, he may as well start packing. He better grow a pair, and tell the republicans that will be the ones blamed if the debt limit is not raised. And it's true, as Clinton did, so should Obama. Clinton showed Ginrich to the door after the last shutdown, and that was no where as serious as this.
My sentiments exactly. We are a SS household. If that goes so do we...on the street. Great post, L.
You are so right. The problem is that there are a significant number of sociopaths among them, trying to pull the strings.
I can talk calmly about Republicans for......

About five seconds. Then I feel myself getting ready to blow some serious gaskets.

Mr. President, please... prove to us all you're one of the few people in DC who still wears man pants!

rated
I have no discrete evidence of international conspiracies but there seems to be a worldwide trend of all financial forces to gain absolute control of all the wealth of the world to the detriment of the health, welfare, and general well being of the general population of the world. I don't see how these manipulative people can be stupid but the mass of the population can be pushed just so far before there is a general explosive blowback. I am both disturbed and amazed at how passive the American public has been at the general political destruction of the bulk of basic constitutional rights and the steep decline in general income as compared to the super rich. Obama is amazingly successful in being in the forefront of destroying much of the progress in civil life that was accomplished in the era of Franklin Roosevelt with the growth of the power of the labor movement. His close conformity to much of the G.W.Bush's agendas domestically and in foreign policy seems to have provided only small doubts as to the aims of his regime which is actually negligibly different from that of the Republicans. Where is the fury in the public that could turn things around? I see little of it in evidence.
Obama could grow a set of balls the size of asteroids...and the little guy is still gonna get fucked in this thing. That has already been decided. All that is left now is deciding how the big the fucking.

Anyone who blames Obama for what is going on just is not willing to look at the truth. We have become a nation of crybabies...looking to get everything and pay for nothing. We, the common folk, have become enablers of people who wouldn't piss on us if our clothes burst into flames.

The fault is ours!

We deserve what we are getting, because we have begged for what we are getting.
Great rant, Lady L. You are fun on the stump! I agree this is a do or die moment for Obama. If he caves now, we might as well get used to hearing "President Bachman" in the way too near future.
Well said. Thank you!!!

That they keep calling the end of Bush's rollbacks "tax increases" really pisses me off.

Boy, do I agree with that!
No absolute accusations are possible but the consistent refusal by Mr. Apisa to see what is plainly laid out for all to acknowledge that Obama has a heavy responsibility for all the policies that are consistently destroying decent government in the USA is, if nothing else , peculiarly suspicious. What it indicates, I cannot say, but it is rather disturbing.
Obama's made more than enough concessions. The Republicans haven't conceded squat. The news is calling Boehner "The Man Who Can't Say Yes." The Tea Partiers have him afraid of his own shadow. People have criticized Obama for not showing leadership, maybe fairly. But it's time for Boehner to show a little too, or we're in deep shit.
Lezlie: I am officially sending you in to run the country.
HUGGGGGGGGGGG
The idiot bartender cum strip club manager has spoken again. better to keep the diarrhea mouth closed than to let all see stupidity in action.

The moron say: "Anyone who blames Obama for what is going on just is not willing to look at the truth," when the truth is EXACTLY the opposite; anyone who doesn't blame obama is purposely not looking at the truth.

apisa (sh*t) refuses repeatedly to even comment on a single one of these facts, preferring to continue to be the horse's as* he's ALWAYS been:

Not one Wall Streeter has been convicted of stealing hundreds of billions in those secularization of mortgaged-back securities; however, a guy stealing $1 recently will serve up to 3 years in prison.

Obama gave $800 billion of TARP to Wall Streeters, who then declared $6 billion in bonuses.

That Obama has more troops overseas than when he took office, after promising to bring the troops home.

Obama refuses to make a recess appointment of Elizabeth Warren.

Obama failed to propose a single-payer healthcare bill.

Obama not only extended tax cuts for the rich, but also reduced the estate taxes, benefitting the 0.6% of the rich enormously.

Obama has already agreed to spending cuts of $2 trillion without requiring any increased tax revenues.

Obama has already signaled that he intends to lower the corporate tax rate instead of raising it.

Obama is planning to raise the retirement age, costing each of us $63,500 in retirement benefits!

Obama is negotiating deep cuts in Medicare and Medicare for the closing of some tax loopholes, such as the home mortgage interest deduction, etc.

Large corporations are earning record profits while unemployment is 9.1%.

Obama has consistently appointed Wall Streeters to his economic advisory team instead of voices of labor like Robert Reich.

Obama is planning to allow the repatriation of corporate profits overseas at 2.5% in taxes instead of 35% or 38%.

Obama is not proposing a massive jobs bill.

Obama fails to fight for the middle class, taking a strong position and using the bully pulpit, when the American people would support such an agenda.

Obama threw Anthony Weiner under the bus. Have you ever seen a Republican throw Senator Vitter under the bus?

Obamacare benefits the big insurance and pharmaceuticals, and its provisions for pre-existing conditions do not take affect until 2014.

Our country is lapsing into another recession, or a depression, and Obama has not proposed anything to avert such.

What has Obama done to change the imbalance of trade with China?

Obama is unlawfully supporting mililary operations in Libya, without receiving Congressional approval.

The guy inherited two wars, had a democratic majority, and now we're embroiled in six, that we know of. Suddenly social security and medicaid are, both on the table, as far as obama is concerned.

Vet's have a six month (average) waiting time before their PTSD claims can even be heard.

Arlington cemetery has misplaced bodies and double bodies under single headstones.

He's authorized four times as many drone strikes in two years than bush the lesser did in eight (not counting other illegal covert ops, elsewhere). He's pushing nuclear armed destabilized into a corner.

He's increased the military budget, and although, theoretically we don't torture anymore, we continue torture and renditions by outsourcing them out.

We accept targeted assassinations despite the Geneva Conventions.

He defies his own lawyers who tell him the war powers act does not allow his continued participation in Libya.

We can't pay the interest on our debt. Gold and silver skyrocket because trust in the dollar has never been so low, and I could go on and on.


Furthermore: "Jeh C. Johnson, the Pentagon general counsel, and Caroline D. Krass, the acting head of the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, had told the White House that they believed that the United States military’s activities in the NATO-led air war amounted to “hostilities.” Under the War Powers Resolution, that would have required Mr. Obama to terminate or scale back the mission after May 20."

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/18/world/africa/18powers.html?_r=1&hp

obama, simply, did the nixonian ploy of ignoring that LEGAL advice.

We pay mercenaries five and ten times what we pay our military members to keep the official military budget look lower than the ~52% admitted to, which equals what the next fourteen highest military budgets on earth are.

We continue to be the biggest arms merchant in the world, often selling to both sides in a conflict.

If one is not part of the solution, they are part of the problem.

Delusional frank has found a way to justify any and all actions by the current occupant in the White House. frank IS the problem, not those on the right, left, or middle.

"Therefore it is absolutely necessary that there should be full liberty to tell the truth about his acts, and this means that it is exactly necessary to blame him when he does wrong as to praise him when he does right. Any other attitude in an American citizen is both base and servile. To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." "Teddy Roosevelt in the Kansas City Star"
May 7, 1918

frank, clearly is base, servile, unpatriotic, and MORALLY treasonable.

Doing the best he can with the cards he's been dealt, eh frank?

frank's a real nowhere man
Sitting in his nowhere land
Making all his nowhere plans for nobody

He's as blind as he can be
Just sees what he wants to see
Right on Lezlie! They're a bunch of selfish, spoiled brats.
I am not particularly happy about Mark's emotional outbursts since they are not particularly productive but his facts about Obama are directly on target and that is the most important part of his contribution.
I think the G.O.P. leaders need a time out in the corner. [R]
Big girl and big boy underwear. Perfect for Boehner and a few others. Maybe somebody will go to Target and buy them some. This entire "debate" is completely transparent and a waste of time as the Republicans pander to their base.
Kate, another one of those, who finds it easier to attack the messenger, than refute the message.

We have had more than seventy aftershocks, here. I am as hard on the Japanese government for their lies and am public about it with my full name.

Got a beef against, facts, kate - join, frank
JT: My dad always said I would argue with a fencepost! :D

Scanner: Maybe we should organize a Geezer March on Washington! The young people don’t seem to care all that much.

Christine: Me, too. I will not make it without my SS.

Patrick: Sociopaths is the right label for them.

Shiral: I have a TMJ disorder from grinding my teeth, thanks to the Repubs!

Jan: I wonder, too, why there are more people out marching in protest. We elders might have to get out our fringe and ponchos.

Frank: I am confused by your comments. On the one hand you seem to be arguing the Tea Party agenda. Then you say Obama is innocent of all responsibility?

Matt: Whatever happened to President Palin? Wouldn’t that be just peachy?

Kate: I watch Stewart, too, and I saw that. That is exactly what I am ranting about. The true job creators are the poor small business owners who can’t seem to catch a break.

bikepsychobabble: Thanks for joining the ranks of the pissed-off! Now let’s do something about it.

Cranky: Never have so few frightened so many. Boehner is pathetic.

Linda: No, thank you. I’m not crazy. :D
markinjapan: You have made an impressive list of factual observations, but I would prefer that you not make personal attacks here. It is possible to disagree without resorting to name-calling.

Bleue: Bratty! That’s one for the list.
Thanks L. You said what I have been thinking so well!! Your rants are welcome anytime.
They can be like this because they consider themselves economically insulated. If they were out there on the streets, really actually affected by these policies, they would not be this way. Then again, half their problem is that they think that people only get to there by virtue of their evil or sloppy ways.

By the way, I wrote a slightly different spin on this same issue today: Write Your Rep. It's an easy read with an obvious action item. I hope you'll visit.
What is particularly revealing about Obama is his open willingness to slash funds for Social Security and Medicare, both of which are independently funded and have no relationship to the budget. But these two programs which are vital to the health and decent living standard of the general public have been the main target for the dinosaurs who inhabit the financial sectors and the super rich ever since they were instituted by the early Democratic administrations. This paints Obama clearly in the colors of the super rich where he is funded for re-election.
Couldn't have said it better. I'd only differ in that I do not believe a "win-win" is possible when the obvious agenda on thr Right is to defeat and expel the elected party. Is this "democracy?"
Troubled Relief Asset Program~TARP
was signed into law October 3, 2008. President Obama would have had to time travel backwards to sign that bill into law because that was 3 months BEFORE he became President. George W. Bush signed TARP into law.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Troubled_Asset_Relief_Program

The opposition to President Obama, from the left, is generally baseless blather.

The opposition from the right is absolutely baseless blather.
ANOTHER obama apologist who likes to "cherry-pick" facts:

"President-elect Barack Obama asked President Bush today to request the release of the second $350 billion in federal bailout funds so he would have "ammunition" if the country's fragile economy weakened further."

"Obama and Bush have teamed up to get the money released. Bush has agreed to request the funding, and Obama will lobby for it by arguing that he will "rebrand" the program and make better use of the money."

http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Economy/story?id=6626721&page=1

Who's blathering, bill?
Oh and the title to the story above is:

"Bush to Ask for TARP; Obama to 'Rebrand' It"
BellemeadeBooks: LOL!

Christina: Amen.

Zanelle: Thanks!

Kent: I visited, as you now know, and love your call to action. I urge everyone else on this thread to visit Kent’s current post.

Jan: The Tea Partiers won’t rest until they have completely destroyed any programs that represent government aid to the less-than-wealthy.

Spike: You are so right. No win-win when dealing with idiots.

Bill: “The opposition to President Obama, from the left, is generally baseless blather.” This is one of the few times I will disagree with one of your assertions. I think there is plenty of room for the left to be critical of President Obama. I am not of a mind to refuse to point out areas of disagreement out of blind loyalty, which is why I consider myself more of an Independent liberal than anything else. You are right about TARP, but remember that Obama was consulted by the outgoing Bush administration about its content and advisability. I thought it was ill-advised then and I still do.
Since you asked, you are Mark. There are a few other examples there also. President Obama throwing "Weiner under the bus," is nonsense. Here is why. First, the NY delegation was being reduced by one. Someone had to go. Weiner committed what some would consider to be an act that would make him politically vulnerable. Weiner was a spokesperson for progressive causes, but not a writer of legislation. A spokesperson who sent pictures of his genitals, which he did confess to, is utterly useless as a spokesperson. Finally, your attacks on the President are generally from an ethical standpoint. Holding on to Weiner (pardon the unfortunate pun) because he did something similar to a person from another party is not an ethical act. The fact that President Obama did not lower himself to the way that the GOP operated vis a vis Vitter is not a failing. You want to criticize the President for acting like the GOP when it is convenient, then you criticize him for not acting like the GOP when it is convenient. It's blather, Mark. Nonsense.
Lezlie,

TARP was not only a good idea, it was absolutely necessary. TARP was not about the availability of cash. TARP was about the confidence in the availability of cash in the system. The LIBOR rate had skyrocketed to unprecedented levels. Circulation had virtually come to a stop. Business could not borrow on a daily basis in order to do business. This was not about banks having money for salaries or bonuses. This was about stores having money to stock shelves. TARP is misunderstood, and was utterly necessary. I did not vote for George Bush. TARP was necessary.
You may consider it blather, bill. I consider outright lying worse.

Just three days ago you said: ""Bradley Manning, who broke the law . . ."

That was a lie, unless you consider yourself judge, jury and prosecutor, able to convict someone, independent of the law.

Yes, you did attempt to wriggle your way out of your statement, but the constitution is not on your side.

Only a few days prior, you posted three contemptuous baseless lies on my blog.

I used to hold a modicum of respect for you, but you have destroyed your own credibility.
Beck, you wiped me off your blog when I presented facts directly confronting your position on support for Obama on health care. I have noticed in all your posts that nothing will ever convince you that Obama errs in any way whatever he has done since he has been elected and I am rather suspicious about your motives in that they seem to have no relationship to Obama's politics.

Mark has presented a whole long list of Obama's defections from his promises. You cannot deny them with any validity.
...not to mention the fact that TARP is mostly already paid back to the U.S. at a profit because the banks paid 5% interest on it. The Government made money on the deal. Bush signed it into law. The act made the country money. Net positive. What exactly is the problem with that? Did the banks pay bonuses? Sure. So what? TARP returned stability to the daily lending that business do to businesses, and it was a net positive.
Jan,

None of what you just said is backed by a single fact. If you read what I just wrote, it is all backed by facts that can be checked by whoever seeks to. It is completely verifiable. Now, if you seek to make a charge, such as you just did, present the facts.
This is what Mark presented. Are they facts?

That Obama has more troops overseas than when he took office, after promising to bring the troops home.

Obama refuses to make a recess appointment of Elizabeth Warren.

Obama failed to propose a single-payer healthcare bill.

Obama not only extended tax cuts for the rich, but also reduced the estate taxes, benefitting the 0.6% of the rich enormously.

Obama has already agreed to spending cuts of $2 trillion without requiring any increased tax revenues.

Obama has already signaled that he intends to lower the corporate tax rate instead of raising it.

Obama is planning to raise the retirement age, costing each of us $63,500 in retirement benefits!

Obama is negotiating deep cuts in Medicare and Medicare for the closing of some tax loopholes, such as the home mortgage interest deduction, etc.

Large corporations are earning record profits while unemployment is 9.1%.

Obama has consistently appointed Wall Streeters to his economic advisory team instead of voices of labor like Robert Reich.

Obama is planning to allow the repatriation of corporate profits overseas at 2.5% in taxes instead of 35% or 38%.

Obama is not proposing a massive jobs bill.

Obama fails to fight for the middle class, taking a strong position and using the bully pulpit, when the American people would support such an agenda.

Obama threw Anthony Weiner under the bus. Have you ever seen a Republican throw Senator Vitter under the bus?

Obamacare benefits the big insurance and pharmaceuticals, and its provisions for pre-existing conditions do not take affect until 2014.

Our country is lapsing into another recession, or a depression, and Obama has not proposed anything to avert such.

What has Obama done to change the imbalance of trade with China?

Obama is unlawfully supporting mililary operations in Libya, without receiving Congressional approval.

The guy inherited two wars, had a democratic majority, and now we're embroiled in six, that we know of. Suddenly social security and medicaid are, both on the table, as far as obama is concerned.

Vet's have a six month (average) waiting time before their PTSD claims can even be heard.

Arlington cemetery has misplaced bodies and double bodies under single headstones.

He's authorized four times as many drone strikes in two years than bush the lesser did in eight (not counting other illegal covert ops, elsewhere). He's pushing nuclear armed destabilized into a corner.

He's increased the military budget, and although, theoretically we don't torture anymore, we continue torture and renditions by outsourcing them out.

We accept targeted assassinations despite the Geneva Conventions.

He defies his own lawyers who tell him the war powers act does not allow his continued participation in Libya.
Oh, regarding Elizabeth Warren, a recess appointment requires that the House and the Senate go on recess. They have refused to go on recess. They have alternated being at the Capitol so that a recess appointment is not possible. There are no recess appointments without a recess. It's blather.
ANOTHER "cherry-picked" factoid by, bill:

"Yes that's right, commercial and industrial loans at all commercial banks were at an all-time high … right when TARP was implemented. And then they fell like a stone."

http://mises.org/mobile/daily.aspx?Id=4762

"Murphy completed his Bachelor of Arts in economics at Hillsdale College in 1998. He then moved back to his home state of New York to continue his studies at New York University. Murphy earned his Ph.D. in economics from NYU in 2003 after successfully defending a dissertation on Unanticipated Intertemporal Change in Theories of Interest.[1]

After earning his doctoral degree, Murphy served as Visiting Assistant Professor of Economics at Hillsdale College in Michigan, U.S., a role he relinquished in the summer of 2006 when he moved back to New York City. From 2006 until early 2007, Murphy was employed as a research and portfolio analyst with Laffer Associates,[3][4] an economic and investment consultancy firm.[5]"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_P._Murphy

Sorry, but I'll take the word of a learned, published and respected analyst over yours, any time of the day.

As I said, earlier, you lack credibility.
bill is nothing but the other uncomely side of apisa, and it is obvious to me, why he is so defensive about obama actions that he would have condemned, vigorously, were bush the lesser to have done so.
Mark,

You call it a "cherry picked factoid." Not a cherry picked fallacy. "Factoid" has "fact" at its root. LIBOR fell because the financial stability of the lending system was buttressed by TARP. TARP caused LIBOR to fall. LIBOR is a measure, a metric of daily assets bank to bank. It rises and falls based upon confidence in the system like bond rates and stock prices. When LIBOR rises, it is saying that cash on hand is more valuable than the prospective profit from lending because the change of getting those funds back is not worth the risk. TARP is precisely what made LIBOR fall.
Mark,

You're making ad hominems. I am not defensive. The facts bear me out. You yourself called my fact a "factoid" only to disparage it, but it is a fact nonetheless. It is factual, Mark. This is not a defense. This is instruction. And I am not attacking you, or calling you "without credibility." That is a defensive act. I said, the charge is baseless. And it is.
There are over 20 facts, Beck. I'm waiting. Playing tiddlywinks with one is really just a form of blather.
bill said: "TARP returned stability to the daily lending that business do to businesses, and it was a net positive."

with no annotation.

I responded: "Yes that's right, commercial and industrial loans at all commercial banks were at an all-time high … right when TARP was implemented. And then they fell like a stone."

with the annotation of the respected, well-known economist who made the assertion.

Your comment is a factoid - mine is an annotated opinion of a notable economist.
Jan,

My charge was that the attacks from the left are "generally baseless blather." That does not require a point by point refutation. The integrity of an inner tube is compromised with a single hole. The argument was punctured. Some of the statements are just angry opinion, and not really meriting a defense. Some of examples of that are:
1. "Our country is lapsing into another recession, or a depression, and Obama has not proposed anything to avert such."

This is opinion which can neither be proved nor refuted.

2. "Obama is planning to raise the retirement age, costing each of us $63,500 in retirement benefits!"

My mistake. This one is actually provably false. This, in fact, can not possibly be true. First, there is no plan to raise the retirement age. If there were, the retirement age would phase in and certain citizens would be grandfathered into the normal retirement age. Any discussion of this has been for those over a certain age to have the same retirement age, and for others to have the increased age. Those with the same age would lose nothing. What others would lose would depend on their age, and how much they contributed. This statement does not have the possibility of being true. It is nonsense.

3. "Obama has already signaled that he intends to lower the corporate tax rate instead of raising it."

This can neither be proved nor refuted.

4."Arlington cemetery has misplaced bodies and double bodies under single headstones."

This charge is reported with important information from this 2009 post on Salon. The post states that there are an estimated 6,600 misplaced graves at Arlington. While this is a tragedy, unless you think 6,600 deceased veterans were interred incorrectly in 8 months, then you must agree that this is an absurd charge. The President is not responsible for the administration of grave sites. No administration micromanages to that level. And even if they did, there were not 6,600 bodies misplaced in 8 months. The link to the article follows. The charge is absurd.

http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2010/09/15/us_arlington_cemetery_5

Etc., etc. One gets the picture.
Mark,

The LIBOR rating works in inverse proportion to lending. LIBOR falling is a GOOD thing for the economy. LIBOR being high is bad for the economy. The fact that LIBOR fell was a positive result of the TARP. When LIBOR rises, money is restricted. When it falls, money flows more freely. The fact that LIBOR fell like a stone validates TARP.
Mark, to state it differently, the economist you cited stated that LIBOR fell. He did not say that lending fell. LIBOR and lending work in inverse proportion. The expert that you cited agrees with me.
Well. Mark and Jon Sand are Spot On. Bill Beck, spot off. Mark and JSand see Obama for what he is, another oligarch in a long line of oligarchs, starting with G. Washington. The checks and balances we all learned about in school were meant to check and balance two forces: a monarch pretender and democrats, as in the mob, both of which the oligarchs feared, as threats to their accumulation of more wealth. The First Amendment (no establishment of religion clause), was not meant to guarantee freedom of religion but was the oligarchs' way of keeping a monarch-pretender from establishing a STATE religion, which had a way of starting costly wars between competing Old World religions, as in the English Civil War. Our founding Oligarchs wanted nothing to do with such a waste of time, and their wealth. The 'checks' were there to preserve the oligarchy of propertied white men of voting age (about ten percent of the 1788 population), and remain in place to this day. Only 55 white Framers showed up in Philadelphia in 1787, most left, as that summer was nasty hot. Maybe 10 white men drafted the Constitution, and it's sole intent was to find a way to create a 'republic'--not a democracy--which protected their interests. We need a new Constitution. And a new president. JSand is correct: We are taking this on our backs, deluded by Obama. And, Oh, why doesn't Obama end not only his war, in Libya, but the other two? Because he, like all Oligarchs in Chief, is beholden to the 60-year fraud that is our 'Defense' Department. defend against WHO, for a trillion a year? Bear in mind, we are no longer a nation, but a Homeland. That's worrisome.
I must say that, although I have no sympathy with Obama, Frank Apisa is right. Obama is devoting all his efforts to being re-elected and the people who are funding him are screwing the American people royally. When the people wake up and accept that they can defeat Obama on an election for what he is doing, Obama will change. But the people will have to start raising bloody hell and so far they are cattle being herded to slaughter. It's an ideological analogy to the Jews in the Nazi concentration camps. Obama and his masters are getting them lined up for a hot shower in he gas chamber.
Mark,

This is from the link that you provided about the 35 year old economist that you cited.

"Robert P. "Bob" Murphy (born 23 May 1976) is an Austrian School economist and free market-oriented author."

Now, Mark, this says that he is a "economist and free market oriented author." Free market oriented means that he is a propagandist. The free market ideologues opposed TARP because it obliterates the free market magic. This was especially threatening to free marketeers because it was instituted by a conservative administration. TAPR was a validation of Keynesian economics. Hank Paulson and that entire crew were huge free marketeers. They had to drop the free market BS and seek an infusion of capital to keep the global economy from collapsing. If your 35 year old propagandist had been in a position of authority, he would have been required t do the same thing. As it is, he is merely used to provide a counterpoint to economists like Nobel Laureate Paul Krugman, who are not free marketeers.

Are you a free marketeer, Mark?
Thanks for Your comments BadScott, and bill, I'll let You have the last word, before concluding with the economist's last sentence:

"The TARP was crooked from the very start, using taxpayer funds to bail out some of the world's richest people from their own foolish investments. The claims that it made taxpayers money are unfounded. Even worse, TARP taught investment bankers an important lesson: During a boom, make as much money as you can, no matter how short-term the profits will be. When the bubble pops, the Treasury and Fed will be there with a taxpayer-funded pillow."

How you conflate his word as agreement with you is beyond me.
Oh, one last thing. In case you hadn't noticed:

"In his State of the Union address, Mr. Obama said he wanted to lower the corporate tax rate, now at 35%, . . ."

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704013604576104741174061606.html
.
TARP made money:

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/10_41/b4198029649845.htm

http://247wallst.com/2011/03/31/tarp-might-make-money/

http://moneywatch.bnet.com/economic-news/blog/financial-decoder/the-us-government-made-money/654/

3 separate sources. All state that TARP made money for the U.S. government. The 3 sources are Bloomberg Businessweek, Wall Street Journal, and CBS Money Watch. Bloomberg is independent. WSJ is Republican and CBS is Democrat. The fact that TARP made money is already booked in black ink. It is not debatable. It is recorded fact.

As for the S.O.T.U. speech, the President said this:

"In his State of the Union address, Mr. Obama said he wanted to lower the corporate tax rate, now at 35%, "without adding to our deficit." That means offsetting any cut in the overall rate by ending scores of broad tax deductions, the impact of which would be distributed unevenly across corporate America. The president didn't offer specifics."

Hell, I favor that! You told only part of the story, Mark. This deal, were it to be enacted, would include the closing of various loopholes. Your statement only tells part of the story. That is not favoring big business and letting them off of some hook, as it implies. That is merely simplifying the tax code to make it less opaque. Why did your statement leave out the part where he said that he would close the loopholes? Were you unaware of this part, or did you leave it out intentionally?
Mark, I had not noticed this:

"From 2006 until early 2007, Murphy was employed as a research and portfolio analyst with Laffer Associates,[3][4] an economic and investment consultancy firm.[5]"

This is about your economist. This might be your biggest blinder yet. Laffer Associates? Seriously? Does the name Arthur Laffer ring a bell? It should. Arthur Laffer is the creator of the repudiated "Laffer Curve." This is the junk science foundation of "Supply Side Economics." Have you heard of that? If you haven't, let me help you out here. Supply Side Economics is garbage. This is the tax cutting "voodoo economics" made popular by Ronald Reagan. This has been applied and misapplied by right wing politicians to put forth the notion that tax cuts make revenues rise. Your selected economist works for Laffer Associates. Arthur Laffer Associates. This is right wing, junk science propaganda. Come on, Mark.
The Austrian School:

The economist that you cited, Murphy, is of the Austrian school of thought. The Austrian school describes a bunch of right wing supply side nuts. Nuts like Hayek are principal in this particular school of thought. You put forth a 35 year old economist who describes himself as from the Austrian School, and was an analyst at Laffer Associates, and you say that he opposed TARP? Surprise, surprise! He is a free market ideologue from the most conservative school of economic thought, and he opposed a Keynesian program. What exactly is your attachment to Hayek, Laffer, Reagan, Smith, Murhy, or the free market? To support Murphy is to support those.
Bill, You call Mark's statements 'right wing junk'. They are not. Understand: Obama=oligarch. You've bought the Obama propaganda wholesale. By the way, what exactly does "making ad hominems" mean? Were I your editor, and you need one, I'd point out that 'ad hominem' is singular.
Bad Scot,

You're right that ad hominem is singular, and I don't know of a plural for it. But, if this needs to be explained, Mark making arguments (plural) against at least three separate individuals was referred to by me as ad hominems. It is not grammatically correct, gut it gets the following point across. An argument against the individual rather than the premises within the argument is not/ are not valid arguments. They are merely personal attacks. Edit that. The economic points are unassailable. TARP made money. The Austrian school, Laffer Associates, Hillsdale College, etc, do not describe the background for a "respected" or unbiased expert.

As for you, Bad Scot, your claim is that I have "bought the Obama propaganda wholesale." As is your usual, you presented to support for this. Not one of my statements is by Obama. I cited Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg Business Week, and CBS Market Watch. How are these sites, which come from various points on the political spectrum, Obama propagandists? Anyone can toss out an accusation, Bad Scot, where is the support for your charge?
Bill,
You cite a bunch of oligarch news outlets, left and right, mouthpieces for the oligarchy. They're as much in the Tank as Barney Frank and the banks he encourage to scam We the People by putting many of us into houses we can't afford, and then reclaiming same houses. I suggest you read Gore Vidal's essays, going back a genertion, especially a 2005 collection entitled IMPERIAL AMERICA. Have you read anything by Vidal? Or Henry Adams? Or Brooks Adams? I have an opinion on that, but will not submit it. It always amazes me that those who are least read are most prone to express their hard-won wisdom. In fact, You and Vidal (and I) are actually on similar pages, but you haven't read them. You're a blow hard. Read something, then opine.
Bill,
You cite a bunch of oligarch news outlets, left and right, mouthpieces for the oligarchy. They're as much in the Tank as Barney Frank and the banks he encourage to scam We the People by putting many of us into houses we can't afford, and then reclaiming same houses. I suggest you read Gore Vidal's essays, going back a genertion, especially a 2005 collection entitled IMPERIAL AMERICA. Have you read anything by Vidal? Or Henry Adams? Or Brooks Adams? I have an opinion on that, but will not submit it. It always amazes me that those who are least read are most prone to express their hard-won wisdom. In fact, You and Vidal (and I) are actually on similar pages, but you haven't read them. You're a blow hard. Read something, then opine.
You are so right! I've sent out my emails, made my phone calls, it just makes me want to cry.
Bad Scot,

I have not offered a single opinion. Opine is the verb form of opinion. I sighted facts regarding TARP.

Murphy was an analyst at a firm used and funded by the oligarchs that you deride.

Laffer is an oligarch. Hayek was an oligarch.

You could not possibly know what I have or have not read. To state such is an absurdity. I will say this, the piece that you mentioned has nothing to do with the TARP, which was signed into effect in October 2008, and refers to a specific historical event. Opinion by Vidal from 2006 has absolutely no bearing on a one time event that did not occur until 2 years later.

Let's even say this. Let's concede for the sake of discussion that Obama is an oligarch. That fact also has nothing to do with whether or not TARP caused LIBOR to rise or fall, whether or not supply creates demand or demand creates supply, etc. The injection of Gore Vidal in the context of this discussion is a complete non sequitur. And Bad Scot, calling me names STILL does not make a logical argument. "Blow hard" is another example of ad hominem.
cited* Pardon the typo.
Our random, chance-driven world sure is complex; yet not so difficult to understand.

As the president's #1 supporter in this Universe I accept the facts presented by Frank, Mark, Jan and Scotty ... many truths are listed herein this thread ... that said, the critiques are out of context- unrealistic about the Right's obstructionism and head in the sand to imply re-election as a priority is somehow a challenge ethically.

I have said here many, many times, watch out for our BLACK HAWAIIAN FEARLESS LEADER 2.0 and what the Obama/Clinton White House will accomplish with Secretary Biden from 2012-2016. They think like Sun Tzu ... most others do not ... that's why they rule.

I've also said before the one person on OS who needs not a defender is Mr. Beck ... that said, ad homineninskys directed his way always seem like uncompromising pure idealogy manifesting in the blogging equivalent analogy of Audrey Hepburn pounding her fists in fluttering frustration on Cary Grant's chest and only possible on a comment thread.

The Prez is a great American, and Hawaiian, Hero- who saved us by administering Cheney's TARP among other things like saving the State of Michigan, getting Bin Laden, beginning Health Care Reform, ending Iraq ... ad fr&^%in nauseum.

Republicans today are either totally incompetent Austrian School in-breeders, or, seditious traitors to the great USA and our economy, credit rating and reliance on free market stock exchange- or, BOTH.

They hate the prez because they think he's African/American, though he is not, what is up lately is: White Militia Activity (here and overseas, sadly for our great Norwegian cousins), KKK membership, Billionaire funded union busting front companies and White Membership in the Republican Party- up in double digits since the election whilst Latinos leave the Repubs in droves- gee, wonder why?

Just one thing about the Austrians, Hayek did write "Why I am NOT a Conservative, and, he was, despite being a Habsburg administrator, fighting against the type of Central Planing that was, at that time, crippling Eastern Europe ... he really came around after the war.

IMUA (Onward)
OK, 'blowhard; was a bad. But I still suggest you read Vidal, smart guy he, and on yourv (our) side! That the oligarchs have us going at each other, with us having no real recourse to de-oligarch them, means, as usual, they win. And on that note, nighty night, anon.
Bad Scot,

As you're leaving, I'll correct you again. The oligarchs do not have us "going at each other." You were going at me. You made unsupported statements, and then left. I did not attack your position. You did not state one. You merely said that you have read Vidal essays written several years before the presidency that we are discussing, and that I have not. Retreating before offering your nonexistent support is the best move you have made. And yes, that part was opinion.
I'm not afraid of default nearly as much as I am of giving in to the ninnies.
Let me lay it out plain. This is a very ugly issue but it might as well be said.
I was a strong participant in the black freedom movement and I regard people of any color be judged strictly on their performance. But being of any racial or ethnic or religious derivation does not in any way whatsoever excuse open and obvious unacceptable behavior.

I rate Obama as a total phony in the light of his pre-election promises and his presidential performance. As a politician the eagerness to remain in office should never over ride the policies he or she advocated to obtain that office. In that, Obama has worse than failed, he has openly promulgated policies of the destruction of basic constitutional rights, totally neglected the vicious prosecutable illegalities of the previous regime and not only continued them but reenforced and extended them. There has been no refutation of Obama's extension of the useless, expensive, and nasty wars in the Middle East to no purpose but to fatten the wallets of the military industrial complex, the oil industry, and probably the illegal drug cartels and the resultant unnecessary deaths of hundreds of thousands of locals and thousands of Americans. The death of Bin Laden was a piece of political theater and a bad joke since the man was out of play for years and as a former CIA agent the whole thing smelled very fishy.

To bring this up is very bad taste but Oahusurfer and Beck have both, in many previous posts on other threads, accused all criticism of Obama as being racist and I can only throw that back in their face as an unforgivable cover-up of a bad performance. No doubt racial slurs were an element in the psychotic right's protest but they are irrelevant in the light of Obama as president. That Obama is black or mixed or whatever is no element in the current discussion and I only insert it in acknowledging where Beck and Oahusurfer gain some of their energy. And this makes me very sad since there are many opinions on which Beck and I agree totally. I am sorry.
I couldn't have said this any more clear or eloquently. Thank you!
If I was to run the country, I would keep the rich happy by keeping their tax cuts(cause we all know they take those cuts and spread them around in creation of good jobs!!!!) and the poor enslaved, they like being enslaved, they sing and dance all the time, I see them on the TV screen(something called the Waltons!!!!)

Oh yes, very happy, always saying, GOOD NIGHT JOHN BOY, etc. etc.

There, all the problems solved in one comment, no need to thank me, Corporate Life still courses through my veins, or out my butt when I poop!!!

Good night, have better tomorrow....
I'm a little tired of all the talk about "the rich". The term is "job creators" and don't you forget it.
It will affect many, including those that need medicaid. They included cuts into medicaid. Perhaps something has to be done, but there are many other things that could be done like making corporations pay their taxes that I do not really hear anyone talking about.
Dear Major, now that you're a 'Job Creator' shall I call you Sir, or Master, or Dictator of the Greens?

:D
Your motherfucking highness will be fine, Tinker.
~salutes the MOFO Highness~ Your orders are my delight my Mother fucking Highness!!!!!!!!

:D
Quote: "I'm a little tired of all the talk about "the rich". The term is "job creators" and don't you forget it."

Aside from people with absolute faith in horoscopes, belief that reoccurs yearly about the second coming in Christ, and adherents in the statements contained in those little cookies given out in Chinese restaurants, the above quote stands very high in the minds of gullible fools who are totally unaware that the stock market is going gangbusters and the rich are drowning in the flow of cash to their coffers while all the basic services in police, education and fire departments are kicking out employees in unrelenting torrents and the USA in general is losing jobs at an unprecedented rate and kids with degrees are living in their parent's basements to survive and wonder desperately how to pay off the killer loans they took to elevate their job possibilities. The general political view that the way to freedom and prosperity is to cut wages and fire employees seems to be some sort of wild psychosis spreading with all the fierce effect of the black plague of the Dark Ages. What the rich will do with all that cash when the apocalypse finally arrives and the final anger is aroused puzzles me totally.
Lezlie,
If you're still actually reading the comments on your post, I'll add one for your benefit. It has nothing to do with the dispute over Obama between Bill, Mark, Jan, Scot, Surfer, et al.

The Republican stand at the moment really comes down to a single assertion:

Increasing taxes on the rich and corporations will reduce jobs (or at least job creation) and we cannot afford that.

This argument is crap. If no one with serious visibility takes it on, the government will probably shut down. Not addressing this argument is the most serious Democratic mistake on the table.

We need revenue from the rich. They can provide it in one of two ways:
1. Pay more taxes
2. Create more taxpayers who pay more taxes - i.e., HIRE (or pay their employees better so they can pay more taxes).

They got a major tax cut, giving them lower taxes than they've had in half a century. Raising drastically might cut job creation, but raising drastically isn't on the table from anyone.

What did they do with this tax cut? They gave us something called a "jobless recovery". In other words, they pocketed the money and, having done so, they have the chutzpah (do you know that word?) to accuse the Federal Government of being fiscally irresponsible for not getting more revenues from the middle and lower classes by cutting entitlements. The Federal Government was indeed fiscally irresponsible - in lowering their taxes and bailing them out!

So, being given a choice of #1 or #2, they chose: Neither. And the GOP is supporting Neither, pretending that they're actually providing #2, WHICH THEY AREN'T.

Of course, their paying more taxes would actually create MORE jobs. Why? Because if they pay more taxes, we can afford more in entitlements and the creation of more government jobs, both of which put more money in the hands of consumers, who in turn spend more money with American businesses, which of course creates jobs as a result of demand. Trickle down doesn't work but trickle up does. It's unfortunate that whoever came up with "trickle down" ended up owning the image of gravity, even though it's actually upside down.

I will admit to being puzzled that none of the guys arguing here are addressing this directly. This assertion that raising corporate and wealthy tax rates always hurts employment is the entire lynchpin of the Republican position. Listen to the Republicans talk about why they won't agree to any tax increase and this argument is exactly what you'll hear, 100% of the time.

Guys, please. We have an urgent problem. We're not at the next presidential election yet, but we are at a looming deadline of immense proportions. Let's please address that first. Thank you.
Kosher,

I have addressed that. Supply side theory is bunk. I called it junk science. You are correct, demand creates supply, and not the other way around. A tax cut does not create revenue in a straight line, constant progression.

Mark, I got out of bed to add this because another portion of your argument occurred to me as being absurd. Here it is. You used a supply side economist, Murphy, who worked in Arthur Laffer's firm, to argue against TARP. Murphy is of the school that says that supply creates demand. That is what supply side means. If supply seated demand, then the trouble assets, for which TARP was named, would have created a demand for themselves. There was an excess supply of collateralized debt with bad ratings. These could no longer be sold. No one wanted them. Excess supply. This refutes supply side theory at its core. Supply side theory is fundamentally wrong. Supply siders like Murphy attacked TARP because it is the poison arrow to their flawed theory which in the cornerstone to right wing economic ideology. Saying that an economist from the Austrian school of though, a supply sider, is opposed to a government infusion of capital to restart the economy, is like saying that a crackhead is opposed to drug laws.

Bad Scot,

I did not say that what Mark said was junk science. I said what Laffer Associates advocate for junk science. Supply siders. Mark used a supply side economist as his "respected economist." Goodness only knows why.
You should have stayed in bed, Bill.

In the last two weeks, You have lied, at least four times; three on my blog - I'd sooner have discourse with Don Corleone.
Sure But Young & Stupid sells now. Huge.

(And, of course, you're right abt all of this.) r.
L.

There is no way I want to leave you with the impression I am in sympathy to any degree with the tea party. I am not!

In any case, the first order of business should be to apologize for the way I said what I had to say. The swearing and dramatics were uncalled for.

I do see the “blame” for what is going on in America right now to be much, much more wide-spread than most people here want to acknowledge. To blame Obama for what is happening more than to blame ourselves is unrealistic and inappropriate.

I do not, as some have suggested, consider Obama without fault. He bears plenty. But the left is as blind as the right in many regards. The right thinks we can run our country on the cheap…have all the institutions; have absolutely no waste; and do it without paying for it in full measure.

The left is making the same unrealistic assessment in expecting Obama to do what simply cannot be done right now. The left’s expectations were unrealistically high when Obama was elected…and their expectations are unrealistically high still.

Obama is working in one of the most toxic political environments I’ve ever seen in my 75 years…worse than Clinton years, which were the worst up until then. HE CANNOT GET many of the things some of you seem to think he can pull out of the air. He is going for less…often much less…in order not to come up empty-handed, because “empty-handed” is the way things would be if a less pragmatic person were in office. The fact that he is getting as much as he has, considering the obstructionism with which he is contending, should be a source of pride rather than the kind of bitching I see coming from so many of you. We ought be as ashamed of the way the left is treating him as we are of the right. He is, as nearly as I can see, getting as much as he can in this political environment.

Long work day today (Sunday is one of the days I work)…but I will be back in late afternoon and have more to say.
Bill,
You've addressed it as an economic point in part of a larger context. In rereading more closely, you're correct. However, at this point it needs to be addressed as a political point, by which I mean explicitly, obviously, and in isolation. You can see just in the Comments here at least a couple of references to "Job Creators". There's the GOP strategem in a nutshell: Take a specific belief and make its alleged ramifications screamingly obvious. We can't reply by saying "supply side economics doesn't work" - that requires too large a leap in logic for the average layman to see that as a refutation. If we take that tack, we lose. We need to say:

"We gave the rich a tax break and instead of creating jobs they pocketed the money! That's what 'Jobless Recovery' means."

and:

"If we make the rich pay taxes like the rest of us, we won't lose jobs that aren't being created anyway and we will shrink the deficit."

and

"The lack of jobs is NOT due to high taxes on the rich. Taxes on the rich are the lowest they've been in over half a century!"

and possibly:

"Cutting entitlements will hurt the economy terribly. If most of the population has less disposable income, who the Hell will be able to afford to buy anything? If so few people can buy anything, how the Hell will Wall Street stay in business?"

and possibly even:

"Even if you forget about fairness entirely, keeping taxes low on the rich is still a bad idea because it will increase the deficit without creating jobs."

I'll swallow a bitter pill if it makes us better, but this one makes us sicker. We can't afford to talk tech here. We don't have time.
---------
This next comment is not addressed to you specifically:

Lezlie's post is about a specific current political argument regarding taxation. It is NOT entitled: "President Obama: Saint, Satan or Incompetent?" That question may become a whole lot more germaine in about two weeks because this is probably the biggest test he's faced. As Lezlie said, he better not even think about caving, but he also better figure out how to avoid blame if the impasse isn't resolved (like Bill Clinton did). If I can figure out what has to be said, I assume he can. Might be a bad assumption.
The way things are going in the USA nobody in the general population sees much to be happy about. The very, very rich have bought the entire political system, lock, stock and barrel, and are pushing most of the country into the ditch. Nobody to vote for, nobody to give a damn about the unemployed, the people tossed out of their houses, the old and disabled and sick, the infrastructure, the basic social services, the future of the young. The country is in real massive trouble.

Back in 2007 a film "Into the Valley of Elah" told the story of a father who discovers his soldier son has been murdered rather casually by his fellow returnees from the war in the Middle East. The film ends with him despondent with no solution no way to remedy the desperate feeling of hopelessness for his country. He advises, as a gesture, to a man raising the US flag on a flagpole to fly the flag upside-down, a universal sign of terrible distress.

There are no great crowd protests today, no people massing in crowds crying for someone with guts and vision to bring back hope and energy and spirit to the country.

There are lots of flagpoles in the country, and lots of flags. Perhaps if most of them started flying the flags upside-down it might send a shiver down the spines of the politicians in Washington to let them know that the pot is beginning to boil and perhaps something more explosive has a lit fuse.
Thomas Sowell had some great ideas in an interview the other day. (See, rather "listen" on Dennis Prager.) He started with the many departments in the federal government he'd cut. Now that would be nice! Yes, it is unfair to deny people who have paid in to SS their checks. Let's start with, and at the time of its creation even the New York Times opposed the idea, the Dept. of Education.
And, no doubt, ol' Johnny boy Boehner ran from the room with tears steaming down his face, and probably said to the Prez, "I'm never playing golf with you again." I'd add one word to your well-chosen list--a big word I read in a poem once: sterchoraceous. It means of or relating to dung. Problem: in using it, the blockheads won't know we're calling them turds.

Listening to the politicians talk, I sometimes think that if language abuse were a crime, they'd all be serving 5 to 10.
With contained bemusement, I watched the exchange among our learned OS pundits as late as I could. I now see the discussion has continued far beyond my ability to stay awake. I am always thrilled when something I post sparks a spirited discussion.

Frank, I readily accept your apology and applaud you for doing so. It is so much easier to listen to a different point of view when it isn't couched in vitriol, even the highly intellectual variety.

Gentlemen, it seems to me this comment thread you have generated is the perfect example of what is happening in Washington as we speak. There is a lot of talking and people strutting their stuff intellectually, but it is on Koshersalaami who has taken the conversation to the "here's-what-we-need-to-do" level.

I do not get any sense that this is a false crisis in our country. I don't see where the last-minute Mighty Mouse swoop-in can happen at this late date. Like Kosher, I believe there will be a stalemate and a showdown. It is too late to hash out who is to blame for what. It just IS! What needs to be done to avert the extremely unpleasant consequences of the failure of our elected officials to put their personal aspirations aside and get the job done. I have not heard anyone in this thread or anywhere else proffer an argument for the merits of our government's default on its debts, so I'm assuming there is at least that one point of universal agreement; i.e., let's not default.

I would love to hear more ideas about how to avoid a stalemate.
Jerry: sterchoraceous, huh? Sounds like a new species of dinosaur! :D I love it.
I''ll have to consider this a rhetorical question, as I've gotten used to frank ducking real questions based on fact.

apisa: "The left is making the same unrealistic assessment in expecting Obama to do what simply cannot be done right now."

Is it unrealistic, in your simplistic way of thinking, not to expect that obama inheriting two wars would escalate them to SIX, especially considering he ran on a so-called "peace platform?"
Mark,

Your use of the word "lie" is emotional and ill advised. Even if there were an error in fact, that is all it would be. There is no motivation to lie. Such a statement is out of place.

I understand why you would not try to defend use of an acolyte of Arthur Laffer to attack from the left. It does not hold water. So you use the unethical escape hatch of calling me a liar. So be it.

As for default, there are no merits for it. Default is a universally bad idea. How to avoid default itself is quite simple. Pay the bills. The only thing in the way of paying the bills is the GOP's insistence on making raising the debt ceiling a debt issue. It isn't and it never was. Raising or not raising the debt ceiling is not a means to fiscal restraint. It is purely political obstruction. This particular type of obstruction is only possible by misinforming the public, and then claiming austerity as a means to fix what ails the economy. The parties or divided on ideological lines, with the GOP holding on to the simplistic, yet erroneous position that cuts in spending and cuts in taxes will return the economy to health. Those who are doing the misleading know that it is false. A 30 year battle had been waged over supply side theory. That theory was torn asunder when the supply siders used a Keynesian solution to the world financial crisis. This fact validates Democratic selections to office for the foreseeable future. That combined with a demographic shift place the GOP as currently constituted in dire straights. Their plan of attack politically is obfuscation and a reintroduction of the supply side voodoo.

Currently, roughly two thirds oppose the GOP position regarding the debt ceiling. The public has been misinformed on economic fundamentals for a generation. You can read in this very thread how a self proclaimed liberal used a supply side reactionary to support his attack of the administration's policies. The liberal had to get that info from somewhere. No one in his right mind uses a supply sider for anything except an example of what does not work. Where that likely came from is some angry left website front, which uses an economist like Murphy to confuse the issue. It was either that, or extraordinary bad luck at a spitball argument.

Paul Krugman predicted a couple of years ago that the GOP would use the austerity excuse as a response to Obama politically, just as the GOP did in 1937, when they derailed an improving economy then. The goal is political. Sink the economy and sink the President. 1937 saw a dip in the recovery from the Great Depression. Obfuscating the message with spurious charges is the work of the right wing. The prescription is to do as we did prior to and after 1937 to recover from the Great Depression. And when you see ad hominem attacks, spurious charges and no support, you can know that you are being handed a load of shit.
There's no rhyme or reason to this. Both sides seem to be ignorant or uncaring that people have gotten fed up with this crap. They live in a vacuum and have gone deaf to the pleas of the people and it is nothing more than a fight to see who's campaign donors profit the most. This is the kind of thing that cost a lot of the French Nobility their heads.
See:
http://open.salon.com/blog/jonqueally/2011/07/24/obama_is_not_caving_to_corporate_interests
See:
http://open.salon.com/blog/jonqueally/2011/07/24/obama_is_not_caving_to_corporate_interests
Apparently, it is not just your mols eroding, bill, but your memory, too.

You said on your blog:


You can wiggle and squirm all you like -- these words are yours and a lie:

"Bradley Manning, who broke the law . . ."

That is a lie. Until a court determines such, under our constitution, he is presumed innocent.


On my blog, you said:

"you are a day trader"

Search you PMs and my blog to substantiate that nonsense.

You said I have a "blind irrational" hatred of obama, when I have consistently listed the reasons, I consider his a failed president.

That makes my hatred of his actions neither blind nor irrational.

Your marine oath of office specifically mandated you to defend the constitution, first, and the president second. DoD regulations, further explained that your obligation to not obey illegal orders is your responsibility.

As a complement, as signatories of the Geneva conventions, you are further obligated to not support his unconstitutional actions.

I'd put it in terms of the Nuremberg defense, too,but you'd just try to wiggle your way out of that, too.

You implied that I called frank a chicken (which I think his refusal to respond substantively to any specific criticism of his lord and savior would seem to indicate), but you did it o a blog post which had quotation marks around the words, and was annotated to indicate the entire postt was comprised of the words of a google group on religion,whose members were fed up with his mealy-mouthed way of speaking words and saying nothing, prior to frank seeking refuge, here.

Four lies - man up to your own words, bill. Frankly speaking, you disgust me.
Jan: "The accusations imply that Obama is on our side. Or was on our side. And that the right wing is pushing him around."
"But the evidence is clear that Obama is an often-willing servant of corporate interests -- not someone reluctantly doing their bidding, or serving their interests only because Republicans forced him to."
"Since coming to Washington, Obama has allied himself with Wall Street Democrats who put corporate deregulation and greed ahead of the needs of most Americans. "

This is the crux of the article you cited in your last comment. My response is to say I never believed for a nanosecond that Obama or anyone else could sweep into Washington with a big-assed broom and clean out all that ails us without having to deal with Wall Street and its power. He who has the gold rules, not he who lives and acts in an ideological vacuum. Anyone who believes otherwise is not savvy in the ways of the world.

At this point, however, I would be most impressed if Obama would plant his feet on this debt-ceiling issue without regard for its implications to his re-election. For once, we need someone to act in the best interest of the people and he would go down in history as an honorable man.
Jan Sand,

Not only have NEVER said that "all criticism of the president is racist", not only have I never said that, but I have not mentioned race ONCE in this thread. Oahu Surfer made reference to that. I did not. I NEVER do. As a matter of fact, Jan Sand, from the beginning I said, "most attacks on the President from the left are blather, and all attacks from the right are blather. If I thought all dissent were racially motivated, I would have said so. Furthermore, I chose one silly point in that stack of garbage, and you said I was playing tidily winks, and that you wanted more. Then I selected a few more. Point by point, NEVER did I mention race. Your comment is unfounded and false. I have defended the President with regard to place of his birth, but not race. You are imagining that. Jan, if I have a point to make, I make it. You can't take a discussion of economics and say that I am discussing race. That is pure bullshit. And that is an example of why I avoid exchange with you. You make stuff up like that.
Bill and Jan and Mark: Ahem.... Have you stopped volleying long enough to read my first comment of the morning? Do you not think I make a valid point?
Mark,

I said Assange and Manning are accused of having broken the law. Your sentence clipped from the paragraph is taken out of context. The post says ACCUSED in a previous sentence. Furthermore, to use that as your evidence to support "lie" is weak at best. We all know about the presumption of innocence. My statement acknowledged it. "Lie" is not the appropriate word for disagreement. A lie is a willful false statement. As for you being a day trader. If you say that you are not, I accept that. I mistakenly took your reference to some trading as buying and selling stocks. I read you entirely wrong. Maybe I had the conversation with another person altogether. The point is, whether you are or are not a day trader is of no importance to me. To presume and to charge that I "lied" about it as paranoid. if you say that you are not, then you are not. I hope that is laid to rest. It certainly has nothing to do with this or anything else.

Can we stay on subject now?
Aside from Mark's emotional angry remarks, the points he made about Obama's policies are very valid and very condemning. I am rather amazed that you brush them aside as not noteworthy in indicating Obama's lack of trustworthiness. If they have no value to you then there is really little point in my commenting further.
Jan: Since I am the host of this conversation, should I assume your last comment is directed at me?
L,

I did address your first comment. I started with a small paragraph to Mark, and then in the second paragraph started with, "with regard to default..." That was an answer to you.

And to your second point regarding doing what is right for the country and taking only one term. I disagree strongly. Obama needs a second term for a number of reasons. First, if the administration were to carve deeply enough ideologically to cause a voter backlash in the other direction in 2012, the new President would have coat tails. On that ticket would be a number of likeminded legislators in the House and Senate. If the President is not there in 2013, your choices would be Mitt Romney or Rick Perry, or Sarah Palin with a GOP legislature in both houses. From that you will get judicial appointments, not only on the Supreme Court, but the entire federal system. From that you get the repeal of Roe v. Wade, repeal of marriage equity laws. Privatization of Social Security. Closed borders. National ID cards. Poll Taxes. Etc. What you would get is some theocratic amalgam of the Jim Crow South and fascist Germany.

ON THE OTHER HAND, if you re-elect the President, you get more appointments to the federal bench, probably including the USSC. You get coat tails, possibly to include taking the House back from the GOP. From that you get less GOP obstruction with regard to the policy initiatives that you crave. One term would not protect what exists now from being dismantled by religious and states rights ideologues.
Jan Sand,

"Not trustworthy" is your statement that I said "all criticism of the President is racist." That is a flat fucking fallacy. Fully fabricated and fallacious. Furthermore, folding and fleeing from facing that fact is fully and fundamentally filthy.
Bill: I don't think Obama's standing firm on this debate would actually result in his loss of the Presidency in 2012, and I certainly don't want that to happen. I'm just taking about a strategy here.

My point in asking you to revisit my earlier comment was more about the part that says the three of you are doing the same thing that is NOT working in Washington. Instead of going back and forth about who said what about whom, what specific actions should be taken?
Lezlie,

I do not have an ideological stance. I oppose an ideological stance. I made the original point that the attacks from the left and right are mostly and completely baseless, respectively. Jan Sand asked me to do a point by point refutation. That is HOW the conversation became a discussion of the discussion.

Much of the criticism of the President is for being "political." The office is a political position. The making of policy is a blend of policy science and politics. As distasteful as the term "politician" and "politics" can be, it is also the means by which the process stays connected to the public. Not all agree about what should be done. Therefore, the system is set up for leverage and compromise. To criticize a politician for compromise in the process is unreasonable.
When civilian politicians and voters on all sides cannot come to an agreement, and when each side lacks sufficient hegemonic strength to dominate so as to make their position prevail (as we saw with Reagan or FDR), stalemate and stasis occur.

When this happens, things get ugly for a democracy. The people often look to the non-ideological, non-political, often military, "man on a white horse" to save them.

Its called "the law of the exception" in political philosophy.

I hope it doesn't come to this...We need a solution to this, and other issues, now.

I am a progressive, and I agree that Obama is not "left" enough, but then again, the right-wing is far more organized and has far more cadres today than it did in the 1930s. This isn't to say that the US is more conservative today than it was then. Its not. Its probably more liberal. But this is irrelevant.

What matters is (a) power and (b) organization and (c) the numbers, vocal power, money power and talking power of those on TV and in the streets. The majority of the voters, sadly, can only react to this.

The GOP learned their lessons from FDR and LBJ and the 1960s and they never, ever, ever again want to return us to a place where the people have a strong say in gvt. As such, they are mobilizing their right-populist cadres to a degree never seen before in US history. Hell, the GOP is Congress is as disciplined as the Bolsheviks in Russia prior to WW1.

So, even though our recession is not as bad as the great depression, the forces fighting Obama are much stronger, and more organized, and more clever in resisting the Dems and Progressives, than they were in the 1930s, when they were basically totally surprised and hit over the head (they really didn't see the New Deal coming, nor did they expect how much breadth and depth it would have).

So, I understand why Obama is being so surgical a tactician here, and is trying very hard not to make broad, strategic moves, but calculated tactical moves. While there is much to gain by going far left, there is also much to lose.

The thing is this: if Obama was really a total sell-out to the right wing, why would the right-wing hate him so much?

I do think he needs to stick to his guns more, though. And I think this is partly due to his inexperience (he compromises too much, even when fighting hard can win---history shows us that fighting often is preferable to compromise), and the increased power of the GOP and corporate establishment, which makes him more cautious, especially when you look at his relative inexperience.

Obama basically said, at the White House Correspondents Dinner, during the Comedy part, that he agreed that being president was harder and more challenging than he ever, ever thought it would be. He didn't say this. A comedian said that's what Obama was probably thinking. And Obama nodded his head, smiled, and had a look on his face that sort of conveyed "now that's an understatement."

The fact remains that Wall Street and Goldman Sachs have immense influence in his administration, and that isn't cool, especially when this recession was basically caused by the lack of regulation over Goldman Sachs and Wall Street. How can he know what's truly going on, when all his advisors have a conflict-of-interest?

In sum, I don't know what to think about Obama. I'm still confused.
I fail to understand how ANY of them can look any of US in the eye and say they are trying. My Shi-Tsu could figure it out.
RW: It doesn't make me feel very good at all to learn that you, too, are confused. I keep trying to keep the discussion focused on the problem at hand (with little success as you no doubt have noticed.) I'm trying to determine if there is a compromise that could leave both sides of the aisle whole and allow politics to take a hike for a minute. In my corporate experience, when that happens we usually ended up with a toothless product that would have been better left undone, but at least we could move off the subject and on to something else.
Buffy W: We have been duped into believing we have a government of, by and for the people. We are only part of the equation during election seasons, when all the lies fly.
I, ME, Moi- I am the one who said the ENTIRE RIGHT WING IS A BUNCH OF RACIST HATERS WHO CAN'T BEAR THE THOUGHT THE PRESIDENT IS A BLACK HAWAIIAN.

Any f*&^%g Questions?

2 days ago the USA Speaker of the House REFUSED to take a call his/our President- how many of you rose-colored glasses wearin' folk want to try and convince me this could ever have happened to Bush? Can you imagine the press' response? Think clearly to yourselves right now people- compare, contrast- then try and tell me otherwise- that this isn't happening because these imbeciles actually believe our BLACK HAWAIIAN FEARLESS LEADER is African/American ... they are so stupid and full of hate they can't accept it is not Sidney Poitier who is President but a Hapa-Popolo member of the Punaluminati ... yes, we do laugh a lot on this one out here in the Islands ...

ps- don't drag ANYONE else into my comments: I stand behind them, shit I challenge ANYONE to open their eyes and just, simply, tell me this could have happened to Bush ... Ha!!!!!

AUWE (Alas)
Great post L. Since when does "fiscal responsibility" mean NO TAXES under any circumstances. GW Bush tried this and you see where that got us. Being fiscally responsible should mean doing whatever it takes (cutting spending & raising revenue) to make THE COUNTRY prosper not just the top 2%. Reagan knew this, so did the elder Bush. The Tea Party folks are complete morons and the Repubs that cater to them are willing to destroy the fabric of the US just in the hope to ruin Obama's presidency. I wrote a post after the 2010 elections saying we can only blame ourselves for not voting and allowing these a-hole tea party politicians to win. Well, the chickens have come home to roost.
Rw005g…

You wrote: “I am a progressive, and I agree that Obama is not "left" enough…”

Later, you wrote: “The thing is this: if Obama was really a total sell-out to the right wing, why would the right-wing hate him so much?”

Think about that!

Everyone ought to think about that.

Why is there a perception that Obama is not “left” enough?

Is it not at least possible that Obama sees progressive initiatives as a goal…not one to be aimed at in a “one fell swoop” mentality, but rather, more intellectually and with more pragmatism by trying to gain those initiatives incrementally.

The right, most assuredly does not think Obama is not “left” enough. They see him as much “too left.” Examples:

J. R. Dunn, editor of the American Thinker calls Obama further left than FDR.

http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/07/the_left_starts_to_dump_obama.html

FOX and friends…”most radical left-wing president” ever!

http://mediamatters.org/mmtv/201104150007

The right, as I see it, hate him because they see him as a danger…a guy willing to take thing incrementally, rather than screw up by trying to do the whole enchilada at one time.

I think Obama is plenty “progressive” enough…and I think he is intellectually able to do things in a way that has the best chance of producing meaningful results. It may take a while…and some of the pragmatism will be especially unpalatable because the obstructionism is massive and unyielding…but Obama, in my opinion, is doing the correct thing.

I like your thoughts…hope you are able to get behind him a bit more.

f.
Couple of "number" grammatical errors in that last post. Sorry about that...got a bit sloppy. Hot as Hell here in New Jersey and I wanna post and get back out to the pool.
Frank: It is hot as hell here (Atlanta) too, but no pool to get back to. :D
Lezlie,
Sure there's a compromise available. As has been pointed out in a lot of op-eds I've read recently (in print on paper as opposed to online), under normal circumstances the Republicans should be celebrating as about 80% of what they want has already been conceded. The trouble is that they're insisting on the other 20%, mainly because of the newly elected Tea Partiers.

We've reached the Enough Is Enough stage, from a Democratic standpoint, which is why the President and Democratic Congressional leaders are refusing a short-term deal. Which they should.

As I said earlier, the reason being given by the GOP holdouts for refusing to raise taxes under any circumstances is the potential ill effect on job creation. If we want to get anywhere, we have to attack that myth; if done successfully, there is no GOP stand short of obedience to campaign contributors. Not even cosmetically.

If there's any time to hit the GOP on issues hard, it would be while the owner of Fox News faces very public ethical issues.
Frank,
What the GOP is saying about Obama is purely tactical. It has nothing whatever to do with an actual assessment of his issue stands. This is demonization to get rid of him. That's how the GOP works now. That's why they never use the word "media" without the word "liberal" before it, so everyone in the media has to bend over backward to avoid the appearance of partiality even when events and facts would dictate opposition to GOP stands.

Please don't confuse analysis with propaganda. This is propaganda.
Kosh: Yep. Taking the wind out that "job creator" BS is exactly what needs to be done, with brutal conviction. I don't understand why no one has done that.
The job creator bs is just that. Most economists agree that the real unemployment numbers if not jerry-rigged would range from 15 to 20%.

Just as frank will not reply if inheriting two wars and expanding them into six (depending on the degree of covert ops considered), he won't reply to your initial premise about job creation.

After all, obama's "doing the best he can with the cards he's been dealt."
The degree to which bill will go to deny lying is beyond belief. ANY reasonable person can see that the entire paragraph in question uses "alleged" and "accused" ONLY regards to Assange, but, clearly says Manning "broke the law."

Small surprise that frank and bill have become bosom buddies.


"Assange’s organization is alleged to have collected information from private communications, and secret government documents by surreptitious means, exerting influence over public officials with the disclosure, and threatened disclosure of this information. As far as I know, Assange is not accused of hacking into cellular telephone accounts, as if that makes a difference. Assange also is accused of acquiring documents, rather than conversations, from governments, and financial institutions. In one celebrated case, Assange has used the product of the efforts of an active duty Soldier, Bradley Manning, who broke the law in order to access, record, and distribute classified information."
Seer: Every time I go all political, it happens somehow. It is the nature of the beast, but for once nobody called me an idiot! :D
So, Lezlie, how does it feel to be the hostess with the mostess? You don't usually get these.

This argument was tedious twenty posts ago.

So, how long do you think it's going to take for one of them to really write the other off?
Or, better yet, before someone quotes a good friend of mine and tells them

"OK, You Guys, Knock It OFF!" ?
Kosh: How does it feel? Invisible! Talk about talking to the walls...
It will never stop, by the way. There is a payoff in that process for them, although I have no idea what it might be. Self-flagellation?

Kate: I don't remember that film.
While I doubt that my words can assuage anyone's delicate sensibilities or remove their pre-disposition towards couching this debacle in other that racial or fiscal or ideological terms, I think what we have here is a failure to slap sense into either side of it all. I still don't understand how the house republicans can have such a stranglehold on the nation. If I am not mistaken they hold a small majority in one house. That would imply that most of the government should be under the control of the democrats yet these misguided idiots are able to not only hold our economy hostage but that of most of the world. Take then into example their outcry over wars and the lack of funding or their new found concern for the "legality" of them when they threw billions, hell, trillions of dollars and lives away in Iraq and Afghanistan. Hiding the actual cost of it all for eight years by not funding any of it directly. No none of it makes sense to me anymore. If the right is so concerned with deficits where were they as they bred them? How on earth can you look people in the eye and claim that you fear ending the tax roll backs of Bush the lesser because it will prevent job creation when forty years of "trickle down" has destroyed not only our jobs but our industrial plant as well while doing nothing for the nation in general beyond creating billionaires that keep their money off shore? We can fight and argue nonsense til we are blue int he face and every bit of effort we waste on fighting between our smaller groups frees the bastards from doing their job and protecting the life liberty and the pursuit of happiness of those they are tasked by the constitution with puting first and foremost in their every act, the people, all of the people, not just the rich, the poor, the different races/ethnicites. the ones who pay them the most in gifts and campaign funds, and in particular not the newly created "individuals" of a corporate nature that no sane or responsible supreme court could have ever claimed that the constitution envisioned. I don't deny or downgrade the wrongs committed by the nation. Righting those wrongs is a noble and necessary goal but if we destroy the nation those things will never happen. If we allow our government to continue its blatant pro money position we stand to become serfs as we were in the 19th century, do we really think our personal gripes outweigh the advances made over the last one hundred years? Well, I'll tell you all this, not in my book it doesn't.

Sorry Lezlie this was a good post, I didn't mean to soapbox it.
Hey Bobbot,
Nice Rant! (Really. There is no sarcasm intended at all. I really like it.)

Lezlie,
You have inadvertently stumbled on a Yiddish expression, which I learned when I once heard my late grandmother, who was from what is now Belarus, mutter "I should talk to myself". That sounded like Yiddish syntax to me so I asked if it was a direct translation. She told me No, the actual expression would be

Ich red tsu der vant

which means

I should talk to the wall.

Or, a little better in English, I might as well talk to the wall for all the good talking to Fill In The Blank is doing me.

Maybe there's more in your background than you think.
Not at all, Bob. You get quite eloquent when you're angry, along the lines of a Patrick Henry! :D
Kosh: My mother worked in a Jewish law firm for years. Many Yiddish epithets were hurled at my sister and me in our youth, I guess because Mom learned them at work. She was the only shiksa in the office. And I use that term in its purest sense, since she was quite attractive and was often mistaken for Jewish by Jewish attorneys on LaSalle Street in Chicago.
Bobbott,

You pointed out one of the most interesting questions of the last several years. The way our government functions is a mystery to most of us, to include many in government. I always thought, as I presume many of you did, that leverage and power in the separate houses of Congress are directly proportional to the size of their majorities. Over the past decade and a half or so, I have learned that that is not the case. There are experts in writing legislation, there are experts in speaking to cameras, there are experts in whipping up voting coalitions, and there is another expert in the dark energy which appears to rule our houses of congress. These people are students of the rules of Congress, and of group psychology. They use things like religion, stigmas associated with race, gender, sexual identity, etc to divide and discipline. They form associations with industry leaders who funnel money into the system for legislative support. They block appointments and assemble tentacles made of cronies which turn blind eyes to regulation and corruption. They use media blowhards which enflame marching masses of idiots who show up and vote. They gerrymander districts. There is a huge, perplexing science of manipulating the system as it exists to circumvent the will of the people. I don't know exactly how they are doing it, but it is definitely by design. And the first priority is attracting money and getting congress re-elected every two years.

Noam Chomsky wrote a few years back about the U.S. being a failed state because its government does not serve the needs of the people. I think he is right. A couple of the first things that should be done are to remove the money from government, and shorten the election season. if our elections were more like England's (U.K.) I think we could accomplish part of this. I think the U.S., as it exists today is a playground for corporations almost like no other place. That would be a good first step.
That comment by Bill Beck was by itself a better post than most of what I read on OS as posts.