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It's the Economy Stupid



As a person who has 75% of his net worth and 25 years of retirement savings in an AIG subsidiary, let me repeat some thing I posted on July 2nd:

Obama has mantras he should be pounding away at every day.


Gas Prices.

Foreclosures. Four years of home-value appreciation - wiped out - and many had borrowed on that.

S&P 500 index now lower than when Bush took office.


Still bogged down, political progress in Iraq - zilch. Wasting over $100 billion a year while pinching pennies on CHIPS. Afghanistan sinking.


An economically-oriented campaign could give Obama a BIG win. Look at these numbers. Look at the Case-Shiller index – the collapse in home prices is far from over. This recession isn't going to be mild - and Wall Street is owning up to that.

But the economy is only one leg of a what I think is the correct strategy: a"reality-based" campaign - there's foreign policy and health care too. To focus on "values" is to fight the 2000 or 2004 elections over again. By failing to realize that, Obama is playing into the GOP's hand and failing to distinguish himself from his GOP opponent in the most advantageous way.

Adam, not get in your face too strongly, but do you still think the time spent on faith-based programs wasn't a total waste of time? Do you think there are more than 0.01 % of the electorate to which this crap might have appealed who aren't swooning over Sarah Palin now?

I really don't get why the Dems aren't hammering them. I want the Dems just to say FIRE THE REPUBLICANS. Politicians work for us (or serve at our pleasure as King Bush liked to say) and the Republicans screwed EVERYTHING up and that's when you let an employee go!

I really wonder how hard a message that is to get out there? The neoRepublicans have done exactly what they wanted because they've run roughshod over any system of checks and balances we might have and now they've got to suffer the consequences (we all know they would've boosted about anything positive.) Does anyone think the voters really won't get that? And, I'm sorry but how can anyone still support the Republicans - at least for this term?

how can anyone still support the Republicans

Because many voters are smart enough to realize that 'the Republicans' did not ruin the economy. Seriously, you people act as if the Democrats don't control the lawmaking branch of our government.

And today we have yet another example of the shocking dishonesty and incompetence of our Democratic Congress: the new placebo of a 'drilling plan' that restricts drilling to areas where there is no oil. The motivation?

After watching Republicans gain political traction in recent weeks with calls for more offshore drilling, Democratic leaders hope the legislation will provide political cover for moderate members of their caucus who face tough re-election fights.

But thankfully the bill has clauses to take care of real, important problems facing us today:

H.R. 6899 Section 109:
(q) Opportunities for Leasing- The Secretary shall establish goals to ensure equal opportunity to bid on offshore leases for qualified small, women-owned, and minority-owned exploration and production companies and may implement, where appropriate, outreach programs for qualified historically underutilized exploration and production companies to participate in the bidding process for offshore leases.

Change you can believe in?

No, no, no, Calligraph. The investment banks and greedy free marketers ruined the economy. Bad loans, bad paper trading, and no liquidity when the wall of cards came crashing dwn led to this crisis. A lack of tough regulation let the bankers and traders run wild and do whatever the hell they wanted.

The Republicans just facilitated them by deregulating the industry to the point where the marketplace turned into a lawless free-for-all.

And now that it's crashing, even the most staunch free-market advocates in our government find no problem using socialized risk management to stop the massive bleeding that's basically causing the entire financial industry to come crashing down.

The new Congress, controlled by Democrats, has only been in session since January 2007. Name one law passed in that time that affectd the economy negatively.

I can name HUNDREDS of bills passed when Republicans controlled Congress (1995-2006) that have had a direct effect upon the current economic crisis.

I will further submit that the Clinton administration also bears some responsibility, but certainly not as much as the Bush gang. The economy was in fine shape when Clinton left office. Moreover, many government regulatory agencies under Clinton still actually worked.

Sorry, Calligraph, but the blame rests mainly on Republican shoulders, with maybe 1/100 of the blame going to Clinton.

You want some names to blame?

Newt Gingrich. Phil Gramm. Dick Armey. Tom Delay. Bob Dole. Alan Greenspan. John Kasich. John McCain. It's a veritable rogue's gallery of right-wing, anti-government wackos.

The Republicans did not hold clear majority for that entire timespan.

Furthermore, you act as if Democrats are long-standing opponents of deregulation. I submit:

  • The Airline Deregulation act under Jimmy Carter
  • The electric utilities deregulation under Bill Clinton (Enron, Exxon)
  • Deregulation of the telecom industry by Clinton
  • Deregulation of banking and financial services in the 90's, under Clinton, with support from most Democrats in Congress

... and more, a great summary of which can be found from Mother Jones:

None of the above listed acts have anything to do with today's crisis.

But this one does:

Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act

  • This repealed the Glass-Steagall Act. This New Deal-era legislation from 1933 prohibited a bank from offering investment, commercial banking, and insurance services. Gramm-Leach-Bliley was passed by a Republian majority Congress and signed by Bill Clinton. It opened the floodgates to the current problem where everyone had their dirty fingers in too many different pots. It led to massive mergers of large commercial and investment banks and set in motion the massive chicanery in the financial markets that has led to the current crisis.

I can list more. Shall I?

If you are so partisan as to believe and further the notion that one act, or only a set of acts passed by a specific term of Congress, generated this situation then the fact that you'll vote Democrat doesn't surprise me.

Wake up. Your attempt at a scathing reply even states that Clinton signed the bill you appear to blame for the whole situation. If you want to blame deregulation, understand that your party of change lives in the world's largest glass house (and no, I'm not talking about Gore's mansion).

I'm thankful that the average American isn't foolish enough to be hoodwinked by this new line of Democrat lies.

Wow, you actually know tens of millions of "average Americans" personally and what they think? Who are you, the Great Kreskin, some sort of mad genius mind reader?

Or are you, in fact, speaking about your own stupidity and ignorance here, coupled with your childish self-delusion and selective perception, all of which is causing you to flail around like a rabies-infected dog, lashing everywhere and at everyone, but not even understanding why?

Obviously, you appear to believe any sort of run-of-the-mill lie that appeals to your base hatred and stupidity.

Your complete ignorance of history, politics, and economics from the last 30 years, well, that's a completely different issue. That's pretty obvious just in how you present your laughably weak and goofy arguments.

You cannot Google your way out of this mess, Calligraph. Some day reality may have a fighting chance of creeping into your monumentally inept thinking process, but I for one will not hold my breath waiting for that to happen.

So, please, lash away, rabid one, and with great gusto. You provide an almost amusing case study of how ignorance and hatred can drive someone to a seriously kooky belief system. The fun part is watching you change your tune every time your previous argument is completely refuted by the facts at hand. But you are too crazy to recognize that.

Tsk tsk. You caught yourself. Go back to your placement of blame on the Dems and then re-read this comment.

Calligraph's bot and paid for, it all makes cents on the $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$....

Hi Tim,

I think Obama's new ad follows your recipe for success. He mentions all of the above except healthcare.

Plan for Change Ad

the fundamentals are tired and becoming more suicidal each year

Tim, I think in the long term (ie not just this election) the faith based thing was a good idea. We need to stop this divide of christian voting for a the republicans. I also think we need to stop this litmus test with abortion views (ie both parties seem to have one).

But more importantly Drudge has a link something about a bailout of AIG.

k -

With respect to abortion, I agree. Faith-based programs are and forever shall be an unconstitutional patronage operation.

Isn't it a shame that they cannot use the Keating Five? Damn these corrupt Democrats of the Tip O'Neal era!

If Dems use K-5, GOP will use plagiarism (Biden). It's better for the Dems to counter the plagiarism charge with K-5 than to go on offense with it, a worse association for McCain, especially considering today's economic problems.

Not to mention Phil Gramm is also the fellow who co-sponsored (along with Dick Lugar) the 262 page bill that de-regulated Credit Default Swaps, the exact financial product that nobody knows how much is worth, and are traded in the range of $60 trillion dollars (3x the amount traded on Wall Street), which when they are valued, have the power to completely dismantle any bank that has them (since these banks have been borrowing against the credit default swaps).


Favorite line from O

This is what happens when you confuse the free market with free license..."

Keep that line ready for all moments - especially the debates!


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