Economists: The stimulus didn't help

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Economists: The stimulus didn't help

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

In latest quarterly survey by the National Association for Business Economics, the index that measures employment showed job growth for the first time in two years -- but a majority of respondents felt the fiscal stimulus had no impact.

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Alpharius
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Most of the stimulus has been held back to make maximum electoral impact this year. We can also remember that many administrative positions are not filled due to GOP obstructionism. But, the good news is that the reason there is not a great impact from the stimulus is that the stimulating has only just begun.

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DRC
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Ya, and economist thought repealing glass steagle and passing the CFMA was a good idea too. Bill Black made a great point on Bill Moyers Friday if you have not seen it. Mr. Black pointed out the Univesities have been filled with Chicago School nit wits like Greenspan that believe that markets are flawless and need no oversight.

As far as the stimulus goes, witthout it the downward spiral would have continued as states increased layoffs and shut down programs. While it was not much, it kept everything going. The other part of that has been the trilions in Fed liquidity that resotred the market, like it or not. Don't forget that without the market rebound there would be a lot of retired people in deep shit.

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babbaramma
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Apr. 6, 2010 6:21 pm

Subject title is misleading suggesting that the Stimulus didn't work. Article said business economists don't credit the stimulus with the current business rebound and that Gov't economists report 3.5 million jobs will have been saved or created by year end. One way of interpreting that is the Stimulus kept people in their jobs, and the recession from worsening, until business rebounds. The missing piece of this article is how these two pieces of information relate to each other. It doesn't show that the stimulus failed. Author probably rushed this to press.

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maraden
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The article is really terribly written.

The question they report an answer to is whether the stimulus affected employment at those economists' firms - not whether the stimulus affected employment in the country as a whole. Who the heck knows where those economists work. Maybe they work for Wall Street and it's not the "stimulus" but the trillions in Fed programs plus the $700b bailout pot that has affected employment?

One thing that isn't likely true is a practicing economist saying almost $800 billion in spending ove time has NO impact. It could be they see a short term effect and a long term effect, or regional differences, or can't predict the magnitude, etc. but only a fool tea bagger concludes the spending has NO impact - of course it does.

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Jasper
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Quote maraden:

Subject title is misleading suggesting that the Stimulus didn't work. Article said business economists don't credit the stimulus with the current business rebound and that Gov't economists report 3.5 million jobs will have been saved or created by year end. One way of interpreting that is the Stimulus kept people in their jobs, and the recession from worsening, until business rebounds. The missing piece of this article is how these two pieces of information relate to each other. It doesn't show that the stimulus failed. Author probably rushed this to press.


I guess under that theory, Obama has Saved or created 110 million jobs . It's nothing more than a fake number that can never be verified. Either it all bullshit or DRC is right and a very expensive political stunt that our grandchildren will be paying for.

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Alpharius
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Political stunt? Not what I said. Obama is not playing in a friendly and patriotic environment with reasonable and loyal opposition within an agree to disagree cordiality. The stimulus funds will improve the economy, but the timing is both a matter of political realism and adminstrative reality. If you have a resistance movement instead of a loyal opposition, and if your appointments are being held back by ridiculous objections from GOP Solons, getting the money to the right places at a time when it can be used best means not just dumping it all at once on whatever is out there.

And yes, Obama has done much to reverse the collapse, at least for the short term. The politics of the long-term are in our dreams. Patching this system will always be what politics addresses until the collapse requires something else. The more nuanced issue is how much of the disaster can be avoided if we cushion the collapse. It matters to organizing the future.

Softening the fall may be the best Obama can do. Or anyone. I do not believe in the politics of disaster and the idea that "hitting bottom" will lead to sanity. I think we build the future now before the collapse, and when it comes we are ready to help people survive and find a path to the future. It is not as if we had the road map even if we have Korten and many other smart and wise prophets and counselors. The guide to the future is more like a jazz head chart.

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DRC
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Quote DRC:

Political stunt? Not what I said.p>

Quote DRC:

Most of the stimulus has been held back to make maximum electoral impact this year.

Can't see how I misunderstood that not to mean Political Stunt.

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Alpharius
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Dumping the whole stimulus without any strategic thinking would have been purely porky. Taking over the administration of a badly run enterprise means having to fix a lot of operational policies. It is not like taking over for a winning team.

Your insult about political stunts follows an eight year media celebration of "smart" politics. Rove is now an analyst instead of an example of criminality. If you are in a street fight with thugs, I forgive you for the brass knuckles.

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DRC
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DRC,

What operational policies has Obama fixed?

Gitmo? troop levels increased? Wall St "banksters" getting additional billions in payoffs? Increased drone bombings of innocents in the illegal wars? Habeus Corpus?

Has he changed anything that you rail against Bush about or has he just increased them?

slabmaster
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Apr. 1, 2010 11:12 am
Quote slabmaster:

DRC,

What operational policies has Obama fixed?

Gitmo? troop levels increased? Wall St "banksters" getting additional billions in payoffs? Increased drone bombings of innocents in the illegal wars? Habeus Corpus?

Has he changed anything that you rail against Bush about or has he just increased them?

He's fixed presidential mis-use and mis-pronunciation of the English language as spoken in the standard American dialect.

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease"

Retorted <pml

polycarp2
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Actually, he fixed the EPA and apparently the SEC as well. That is a hell of a start over 30 guys watching porn under Chris Cox's nose while Madoff and Goldman robbed the country blind. I wonder what is going on at the dept of interior now. I guess the drug induced orgies are over there as well.

I am not thrilled with Obama, but just trying to put in context what a disaster Bush was at every level and every appointment is beyond words...and I am sure we don't know the half of it.

sisco

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babbaramma
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Quote babbaramma:

Actually, he fixed the EPA and apparently the SEC as well.

How?

Any specifics?

slabmaster
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Quote Alpharius: I guess under that theory, Obama has Saved or created 110 million jobs . It's nothing more than a fake number that can never be verified. Either it all bullshit or DRC is right and a very expensive political stunt that our grandchildren will be paying for.

Huh? I assume you agree that the article was poorly written. I'm done here, moving on.

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maraden
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Really? Wow. I thought everyone was up on current events here. I guess it depends on what one is paying attention to. There is a lot going on, though.

EPA - Lisa Jackson has made a huge impact in the EPA. Don't forget Christy T. W. quit because Bush was basically doing to the EPA what he did to the SEC and Dept of Interior. However, I am going to miss the coke induced orgies Exxon used to throw.

Moutain Top Mining - http://open.salon.com/blog/steve_klingaman/2010/04/07/the_end_of_mountaintop_removal_mining_its_complicated

Executive Order on the Chesapeake Bay

http://executiveorder.chesapeakebay.net/

Fuel Economy Standards

http://www.epa.gov/fueleconomy/

I am sure there is other stuff, these are just a few major items off the to of my head.

SEC

Lets start with the removal of Chris Cox and telling people they have to go back to doing their jobs. No more porn during working hours. The removal of people who don't believe in regulation is probably enough. However, Geithner, Larry the liar and Bernanke are still hanging around so I guess we will wait and see if anything really changes.

Chris Cox

I am not sure there has ever been a guy that did so much damage in one place, outside of Bush of course. Elimination of the uptick rule, bank capitalization requirements and Mark to Market rule changes that accelerated the collapse. Then there is the Madoff Scandal. He is either the biggest patsi ever or Dr. Evil. He was certainly Paulson’s bitch. I am amazed that he continues to fly under the radar.

http://norris.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/01/21/chris-cox-leaves/

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babbaramma
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The Republican resistance movement!

I like it!

That is a bumper sticker for the tea partyers!

The RRM's.

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spankycrissy
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Most economists i've read who are outside the Chicago School trickle-downers embraced by the Obama Admin. say the stimulous package was several trillion too little.

It has saved states from cutting essential services to nothing...and kept state employees from joining the ranks of the unemployed.

The only economy that matters to those twits, the financial one, has recovered....and it took only $12 trillion in bailouts and guarantees to accomplish the task. A horrendous waste of national resources.

The "Bernanke Stock Market", supported by zero interest loans to the financial services sector is called recovery. The stimulous package for the real economy has stimulated what....a one-time boost in auto sales with "Cash for Clunkers"....and the ongoing outsourcing of American jobs.

Direct government spending on infrastructure and an immediate revamping of our trade policies are urgently required....and are off the table....while military expenditures are going through the roof.

One of my neighbors was turned down by the military 6 months ago, it seems the economy has boosted recruitment and they could be more selective. Now he's been approached with a possible induction this coming winter. Is it a sign of economic recovery....or a sign of more military adventurism on the horizon? Pakistan? Domestic tranquility?

Is it a bankrupt empire flailing around in its own death throes while Wall St. plays Nero's fiddle and brings about the financial collapse of some EU nations....Greece, Spain, Portugal? 'Tis a game of dominoes.

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease"

polycarp2
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Poly, it is clear that the administration has put politics over economics. I am not sure if any other course could win even though I agree with your diagnosis of the big picture.

My hope is that reality will force sanity when all else fails. It is the Homer Simpson principle of human salvation.

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DRC
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Quote babbaramma:

Really? Wow. I thought everyone was up on current events here. I guess it depends on what one is paying attention to. There is a lot going on, though.

EPA - Lisa Jackson has made a huge impact in the EPA. Don't forget Christy T. W. quit because Bush was basically doing to the EPA what he did to the SEC and Dept of Interior. However, I am going to miss the coke induced orgies Exxon used to throw.

Moutain Top Mining - http://open.salon.com/blog/steve_klingaman/2010/04/07/the_end_of_mountaintop_removal_mining_its_complicated

The war on coal mining is nothing new. Obama and Biden said they would effectively destroy mining. She is carrying out her bosses direction.

Executive Order on the Chesapeake Bay

http://executiveorder.chesapeakebay.net/

I'm sure the Chesapeake Bay will appreciate such a fine report. I'd give it an "A" for a great looking paper.

Fuel Economy Standards http://www.epa.gov/fueleconomy/
This is a revised window sticker gas milage rating for '08 cars vs '07 cars. What did Lisa have to do with that and who the hell cares? It's a goddam make work function for an office assistant.

I am sure there is other stuff, these are just a few major items off the to of my head.
Stunning amount accomplished in 16 months. The world has tilted on it's axis.

SEC

Lets start with the removal of Chris Cox and telling people they have to go back to doing their jobs. No more porn during working hours. The removal of people who don't believe in regulation is probably enough. However, Geithner, Larry the liar and Bernanke are still hanging around so I guess we will wait and see if anything really changes.

Changes? LOL!!! Those guys aren't "hanging around". They are gainfully employed and guiding Obama the clueless.

slabmaster
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Apr. 1, 2010 11:12 am

Economists?

I have never heard of an economist that hit it big on wall street.

They all have theories and plans and pie charts.

Some write books and once in a while they give each other a prize for a great thought, what have they done for us in a real context.

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spankycrissy
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Quote spankycrissy:

Economists?

I have never heard of an economist that hit it big on wall street.

They all have theories and plans and pie charts.

Some write books and once in a while they give each other a prize for a great thought, what have they done for us in a real context.

It depends on who the "us" is you are referring to..

QUOTE: "Today Americans are ruled by propaganda. Americans have little regard for truth, little access to it, and little ability to recognize it."

"Truth is an inconvenience for government and for the interest groups whose campaign contributions control government."

"Truth is inconvenient for ideologues."

"Today many whose goal once was the discovery of truth are now paid handsomely to hide it. “Free market economists” are paid to sell offshoring to the American people. High-productivity, high value-added American jobs are denigrated as dirty, old industrial jobs. Relicts from long ago, we are best shed of them. Their place has been taken by “the New Economy,” a mythical economy that allegedly consists of high-tech white collar jobs in which Americans innovate and finance activities that occur offshore. All Americans need in order to participate in this “new economy” are finance degrees from Ivy League universities, and then they will work on Wall Street at million dollar jobs.

Economists who were once respectable took money to contribute to this myth of “the New Economy.”

"And not only economists sell their souls for filthy lucre. Wherever one looks, truth has fallen to money. - Paul Craig Roberts, economist and former Asst. Secy of the Treasury, Reagan Admin.

http://www.counterpunch.org/roberts03242010.html

Economists are paid to worik on behalf of their employers...and have done quite well sucking the lifeblood of the nation into very few pockets.

Note Obama's Chief Economic advisor was former CEO of Goldman Sachs. He did exceptionally well....on Wall Street. Bailing Goldman Sachs saved him tens of millions.

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease"

polycarp2
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Quote polycarp2:

Note Obama's Chief Economic advisor was former CEO of Goldman Sachs. He did exceptionally well....on Wall Street. Bailing Goldman Sachs saved him tens of millions.

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease"

Yet, the faithfull "progressives" will excuse this quaint little factoid as long as the "blame Bush" mantra still has a little staying power to allow Obama & Co to finish off what's left at warp speed. Take the left/right equasion out of the picture for a moment and ask yourself, "why was Geitner of all people installed as the cheif economic advisor?". The wolf not only has full access to the henhouse (treasury), he has the blessing of the President. Meanwhile, the mindless minions gleefully walk into the slaughterhouse chanting "hope & change".

We are so.... so screwed.

slabmaster
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Apr. 1, 2010 11:12 am
Quote slabmaster:
Quote polycarp2:

Note Obama's Chief Economic advisor was former CEO of Goldman Sachs. He did exceptionally well....on Wall Street. Bailing Goldman Sachs saved him tens of millions.

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease"

Yet, the faithfull "progressives" will excuse this quaint little factoid as long as the "blame Bush" mantra still has a little staying power to allow Obama & Co to finish off what's left at warp speed. Take the left/right equasion out of the picture for a moment and ask yourself, "why was Geitner of all people installed as the cheif economic advisor?". The wolf not only has full access to the henhouse (treasury), he has the blessing of the President. Meanwhile, the mindless minions gleefully walk into the slaughterhouse chanting "hope & change".

We are so.... so screwed.

Every progressive I know is and has been deeply troubled by Obama's choice of economic advisors. It's clear to me that he's genuinely better than Bush on many issues important to us on the left, but his handling of economic matters is definitely questionable. So there's three possibilities that I see.

First, it could just be "in with the new boss, same as the old boss" and Obama is actively pursuing a policy of completing the destruction of the middle class started by Reagan, Bush, Clinton, and Shrub. I would think this would make you happy if you're a devotee of conservative economics.

Second, it's important to remember that he studied law at the University of Chicago. He would (or at least could) have regularly rubbed elbows with economics professors there. My sense is that he's not personally that interested in or well-versed in economic theory, per se. So he could be genuinely trying to do the right thing but he's fallen into the trap of believing the reigning economic orthodoxy that fixing Wall Street will automatically fix Main Street.

Finally, he could be playing chess and not checkers. You can't ignore the degree of political grief he has suffered for every move he's made, left, right, or center. Many of us on the left wish he would act more like FDR. But when FDR took office the country was already two years deep into the GD and he faced a huge systemic bank collapse literally from day one. So he had a lot more political room -- basically the country was crying out for him to do something, anything, to get us out of the mess he had inherited from the conservatives. So Obama may feel politically obligated to follow the the Chicago School prescriptions until such time as they completely fail. At that point he can move farther to the left because the country will be behind him more solidly.

I admit that possibility #3 is probably just my fantasy but we can hope.

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BadLiberal
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Slabmaster wrote: Yet, the faithfull "progressives" will excuse this quaint little factoid as long as the "blame Bush" mantra still has a little staying power to allow Obama & Co to finish off what's left at warp speed.

------

Perhaps that's why it takes the Board's most conservative poster, Polycarp2, to continually point out Obama's follies. LOL

BadLiberal, Obama may actually believe the Chicago School of Economics nonsense, afterall, he was raised with it. Most Americans swallow at least some of it. It's been spoon-fed to them for 30 years. It's all most of them know.

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease"

polycarp2
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Worst financial crisis since the Great Depression and the stimulus didn't work in one year....Damn. The GD was over in less time...

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danieladamsmith
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Well, in order for a stimulous to do much good, there has to be something to stimulate.

When I last received a stimulous check, I stimulated the Chinese economy by purchasing a much-needed new computer.

I suppose a lot of the stimulous money.... being used to retain state employees in most states will be utilized in the same manner....by those whose jobs were saved from the chopping block. Chinese socks, Chinese shirts, Chinese shoes, Chinese TV's, Chinese everything. About the only U.S. thing it will really stimulate is the trade deficit.

The Defense Dept. will use a portion of its increased budget to purchase Chinese missile parts. The U.S. stimulous money has been a boon to China, Vietnam, Bangladesh and El Salvador.

During the Great Depression there was an economy to stimulate. It hadn't been shipped abroad.

As the pundits have noted, the recession is over. It officially ended months ago. Welcome to the new prosperity...limited to Wall Street. Bonuses have never been higher.

My own good news. My rent has been lowered in an attempt to stem the flow of moves and evictions as families double up because they can no longer pay their rent..

The only signs around here that are more prevalent than "apt. for rent" signs are "car for sale cheap - need the money" signs.

The only thing keeping this economy afloat is stimulous money. When its gone, its gone. As Batra noted this a.m. on Thom's show, the ability of gov.'t to borrow to stimulate is done....besides, there isn't anything left to stimulate. The real economy has been outsourced! We'll either re-structure it, re-build it....or sink.

That involves a drastic change in trade policy. Don't count on it until we hit rock bottom and a loud roar of protest hits Washington from an increasingly impoverished population. The sooner the howls of protest, the sooner the prospects for a real recovery.

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease"

polycarp2
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

So actually doing something about mountain top mining isn't doing something? That’s brilliant! Do you write for Fox? The fuel economy standards will work and will probably be exceeded in many cases. I drive a Jetta TDI today that averages 40 mpg and fits 4 easily. As far as the Chesapeake Bay goes, it would probably help is you did a little research before diving in. It isn’t just a paper. They have mobilized the headwater and watershed states in manor I have never seen before. This one is no nonsense.

Funny that you took so much time to answer, but used so little thought.

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babbaramma
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Quote babbaramma:

So actually doing something about mountain top mining isn't doing something? That’s brilliant! Do you write for Fox? The fuel economy standards will work and will probably be exceeded in many cases. I drive a Jetta TDI today that averages 40 mpg and fits 4 easily. As far as the Chesapeake Bay goes, it would probably help is you did a little research before diving in. It isn’t just a paper. They have mobilized the headwater and watershed states in manor I have never seen before. This one is no nonsense.

Funny that you took so much time to answer, but used so little thought.

Your post has what to do with the title of the thread, "Economists: The Stimulous Didn't Help"?

Please stick to thread topics or begin a new one.

Moderator

polycarp2
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

PC2

I guess I should have tied to to Cash for Clunkers instead, or at least included it.

I had originally responded to your comment about Obama not doing much in the way of change or that would make a difference. Then Slabby needed some proof then it went downhill from there. But I will try to stay more on point in the future, thanks, - sisco

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babbaramma
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The Stimulus package stimulated little, other than all sorts of things and little pet projects that have/had nothing to do with stimulating overall economic growth, and stimulating the formaton of real, not merely highly contrived short term private sector jobs. Millions to pave outdoor roller skating parks, and millions and billions for a ton of other little short term pet projects adds little to any lasting private sector jobs. Once the skating park is paved, all the sort term work is gone.

The only thing stimulated was the growth of more government, more permanent paper shufflers that don't grow anything, assemble anything, manufacture anything, sew anything, dig up anything, or create and market anything. All the increased government bureaucracy and jobs has skewed employment statistics to seem at times not as disastrous as they really are.

Obama's speech/lectures in early 09 stated it was vital to pass the stimulus bill go keep unemployment rates under 8%. Well, after the over 3 /4 of a trillion stimulus boondoggle helping Obama quadruple our debt before his first year was over, that nonsense has our unemployment rate at nearly 10%, and the underemployment rate even higher.

Obama's promised complete transparency, with one pompous example being his promise that the stimulus money utilizaton would be open for complete review and tracking by informed, interested citizens ("we'll be watching every line, and you'll be able to track every nickel") at the online website, has been a complete lie and a joke, with months gone by and billions already largely wasted before even some limited semblance of data was available.

It was also hysterically funny, or absolutely enraging, depending on what one's mood is, to see reports (predictably barely mentioned in most media) of millions sent to zip codes that don't even exist.

As for Obama and Biden's jobs "created or saved" bravo sierra, which even they finally realized was just being laughed at, it was quite revealing to hear a county official from mid Missouri interviewed about the stimulus package and job creation in his area. They were told to file a report detailing the number of jobs created or saved by the stimulus package in their area. When he reported back that there were NO jobs created or saved by the stimulus package, he was dressed down by superiors informing him that they weren't allowed to file reports indicating no actual jobs created or saved in their jurisdiction, and to simply make up a number and file it.

Bad change and weak hope.

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WhitemoonG
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Obama followed standard neo-liberal economic proceedures...embraced by both parties.

1. Bail financiers...the top...so they can create jobs.....they didn't.

2. Make sure banks have lots of money to lend....they do, and aren't lending. They're playing Wall Street and are busily bringing down Greece with bond shorting and derivative plays. Spain , Ireland or Portugal are probably next.

3. Provide tax cuts. ....he did. Tax cuts have a stimulous return of about 90 cents per buck of cut. In other words....it's negative.

4. Give the money to the states as they know how to best utilize it....he did. They've used it to help balance their budgets.

He's followed all the advice given by the right wing wackos of the Chicago School of Economics. Same twits Reagan,. Bush I, Bush II and Clinton listened to. He even re-appointed Bush's golden boy Bernanke as Head of the Fed.

At some point, maybe Obama willl get that Reganomics, trickle down, and outsourcing don't work. Credit rather than wages that rise with productivity don't work either.

We've squandered $12 trillion in bailouts and guarantees to banksters.and derivative players. The globe needs another trillion to bail the Euro because of the Greece debacle. When the financiers bring down Spain, Portugal and ireland, trillions more will be required on top of that to stave off complete global collapse.

Blame the banksters, financiers, and a Congress so beholden to both groups it can't...won't...pass financial reform to stop the whole mess in its tracks..Congress refuses to put back in place the laws FDR instituted to keep this sort of global financial meltdown from ever happening again. They conflict with Reaganomics and the Chicago School of Economics twits.

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease"

polycarp2
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Poly, I see this as the politics of the economy, not the economics of the economy. Money owns Congress structurally. Maybe Obama could have brought in our economic team and maybe not. Much as you and I and some others on this board "get it," is there a political consensus to back the economic reforms? I don't think Obama arrived in DC with a public ready to oppose the banksters of Wall St. That is developing as they behave badly.

I am not trying to make Obama into anything other than he is, but I think we have to do more that wish he were our champion. How do we move him in a positive direction? I don't see him as ideologically committed to the Chicago School as much as compromised by them.

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DRC
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Why the Web of Life is Dying...

Could you survive with just half of your organs? Think about it. What if you had just half your brain, one kidney, half of your heart, one lung, half a liver and only half of your skin? It would be pretty hard to survive right? Sure, you could survive losing just one kidney or half of your liver, but at some point, losing pieces from all of your organs would be too much and you would die.

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