Moody’s Investors Service turned its sights on the United States

One day after downgrading Ireland’s credit rating to junk status – Moody’s Investors Service turned its sights on the United States. In an announcement released yesterday – Moody’s said the United States is in danger of losing its “AAA” credit rating – and has put our nation under review for a credit downgrade. A credit downgrade for the United States could be the first step toward other nations dropping the dollar as their reserve currency – pushing our nation toward collapse – just like what happened to the British Empire after World War 2 when global confidence in the pound was lost.

And with financial calamity around the corner – Republicans now have no argument whatsoever in stopping a debt-limit deal as a new poll by Gallup shows that 74% of REPUBLICANS agree that a good debt-limit deal includes both spending cuts and tax hikes – just like what President Obama has proposed. Yet – after more “testy” negotiations last night at the White House – Republicans still won’t play ball. And President Obama seems to be losing his patience with the Republican’s dangerous game – reportedly telling Congressional leaders on the Right – “I’ve reached my limit. This may bring my presidency down, but I will not yield on this.”

Not only will a default bring down the presidency – but it will also bring down the nation. And unfortunately, it appears Republicans are willing to accept that trade-off.


DRichards's picture
DRichards 11 years 46 weeks ago

Is it true that the bloated military expense is not included in the debt ceiling?

If it is true, why is it not included?

ymhotep's picture
ymhotep 11 years 46 weeks ago

We do not need a deal. Just raise the damn debt limit all by itself. All the rest of this kabuki dancing and noise is meant to simply entertain the unwashed masses. Getting those 47 thousand troops out of Iraq ASAP, now that is something worthwhile to yell about. Peace

ymhotep's picture
ymhotep 11 years 46 weeks ago

Actually nothing specifically is included in our national debt because everything is included. The irony is that the Chinese are loaning us money to fight wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya. We are doing the fighting, dying and going into debt as they get the minerals in the eastern mountains of Afghanistan and the oil from Iraq. Who's the stupid guy here? Peace

RichardofJeffersonCity's picture
RichardofJeffer... 11 years 46 weeks ago

Milton Friedman's economic dogma has been destroying economies around the world for forty years. Friedman has designed a complex ponzi scheme for the wealthy and powerful.

loren salmonson 11 years 46 weeks ago

All politicians are traitors to the Constitution Article XIV if they question public debts, and I quote the Constitution, "The validity of public debt shall not be questioned."

DELETEBusGreg 11 years 46 weeks ago

Great show, again.

I e-mailed Pres. O, my Congressman (Bob Filner, Freedom Rider) and the two ladies in the Senate that even though that I am dependent on 900 dollars social security, they should hold firm and not cave to the irresponsible behavior of the TEA Party (Theocratic Evangelical Anarchist Party) and her followers. An interruption will indeed cause me hardship, but it will be nothing compared to the misery if Democrats cave in to more demands. (I didn't include my interpretattion of TEA Party in the e-mails. ;-))

On another note; Something was mentioned about President Obama suggesting to MR. Can't or that he should not call his bluff.

The best bluff in poker is when your opponent THINKS you are bluffing. He'll call and raise you every time and when the cards drop, the winner is... Mr. Can't or needs to keep this in mind, as I am sure that our President is NOT bluffing, at least I hope he isn't bluffing and sticks to his guns.

Sorry to hear about Minnesota, one of my childhood homes. I just hope Texas and Arizona don't ever get in that spot as a beer and cancerette shortage in case of govt. shutdown would be another opportunity for the Mexican drug cartels.

Mark Saulys's picture
Mark Saulys 11 years 46 weeks ago

The Republicans and Tea Partiers are misled and misleading. The United States was not founded on some kind of principle of "no taxes". The Articles of Confederation, in fact, were scrapped because they did not give the government power to levy taxes.

The Boston Tea Party was not a protest against ANY taxes. It was a protest against Brittish taxes, against taxes to the Brittish Crown, against "taxation without representation". It was a protest against taxes that Americans were paying but which Americans were receiving no benefit from.

It was not against the payment of taxes per se. Thomas Jefferson himself proposed a progressive tax system in which the rich would pay more.

CharlesN 11 years 46 weeks ago

As Republicans by their actions continue to threaten our economic stability and strength, they threaten our national security. Its seems to me that in an economic context they are giving aid and comfort to our enemies and as one caller suggested the other day are committing treasonous acts against these United States.

David Abbot's picture
David Abbot 11 years 46 weeks ago

I don't know enough about finance to give the U.S. or any other country a credit rating. However, while Moody's probably does know enough to do it, what possible reason could I have to trust anything that Moody's says, when they're one of the institutions that told us that Enron was a real good deal and that pointblank refused to tell the truth about the subprime mortgage scam when they knew that by lying about that scam they were driving our country into a depression? Moody's is just another fat-cat fascist institution filled with rich people who want to get richer and who are willing to do anything to anyone to get more money.

And if you want to understand the republicans who are standing in the way of raising our debt ceiling, just go to the zoo and look at some chimps. See how the chimps react- both as individuals and as a group- when food is put into their cage, and the only difference between them and republicans is that chimps are quite up front and honest when they look out only for their own selfish interests, while republicans tell you that they are looking out for your best interests while they pick your pockets, steal your bank account and retirement, drive the worth of your house into the ground, bankrupt you with illegal wars, and carefully explain to you why God hates you. In other words, we'd be better off with chimps in congress than republicans.

If Obama really is standing up to those chimp republicans, it would be a first. And if he sticks to it and forces the republicans- howling and throwing feces just like the chimps from whom they descended- to do the right thing, why, maybe he is the man we elected. (I understand that comparing republicans to chimps is degrading and insulting to chimps, and I apologize for it. I do not have anything against chimps. Some of my best friends are chimps. In fact, I even have republican friends. But I trust my chimp friends more than I trust my republican friends.)

mwalkerco's picture
mwalkerco 11 years 46 weeks ago

Ever since Nixon, Republicans have been trying to bring down a Democratic president, and they finally may get their wish. Luckily, they are bringing themselves down even faster!

Bob_H's picture
Bob_H 11 years 46 weeks ago

Was this the very same Moody's that rated junk derivatives as excellent investments, and whose management claimed they didn't really understand what they were rating to Congress? Do they really understand the situation here any better? Europe doesn't have a lot of confidence in their ability to rate countries, either...

Scarabus's picture
Scarabus 11 years 46 weeks ago

I got here via a link. I came to answer the question "What credit rating would you give the U.S.?" Up front I acknowledge that, in respect to economics, macro or micro, I am totally unqualified to make professional judgements here. But I do think I'm qualified to understand and articulate common-sense principles.

Would I insure an airplane or a bus on its next departure? Would I invest in the entity that owns the associated plane or bus company? Lots of considerations, of course, but to a large degree that would depend on the condition of the equipment and on who was controlling the maintenance/performance resources, the training, the recruitment of employees, the standards of accountability for both systems and individuals, the individual men and women handling the wrenches or flying/driving controls, etc.

By analogy, would I be comfortable insuring or investing in the U.S. right now? Absolutely not. I'm what's called a "risk averse" investor, and I think today's U.S.A. represents a very, very bad risk. Why? Because the equivalent of children and conservative playground bullies, and/or blind ideologues, and/or implicit extortionists have way too great an influence on our policy. Infrstructure is crumbling. Adequate staffing, training, and accountability are denied. And so on…

And they'll never by called to account for their destructiveness because the "4th estate" have sold out and/or wussed out. Indeed, even worse, in the case of Fox News and right-wing hate talk radio, the "4th estate" are worsening the problem rather than contributing to the solution.)


Geraldine Rieman 11 years 46 weeks ago

Michelle Bachmanm was on Hannity last night and said her usual that it's no big deal, and we can just "pay the interest" on our debt. But we all know that the Republican goal is to bring Obama down, that is what they care about, not We the People.

Elioflight's picture
Elioflight 11 years 46 weeks ago

According to Dick Durbin on Charlie Rose last night, Reagan raised the debt ceiling a record 19 times--Bush the stupid was second at 9 times, plus Bush doubled our debt. How is it now a crime for a Democrat to do the same?

The rethuglicans LOVE to gloss over the ill they did--tax the rich you SOBs--we aren't going to put up with this crap much longer. When we're all starving, beware your gates and security you monied monkeys--hungry people are fierce and will take no prisoners.

whateverittakes 11 years 46 weeks ago

Moody's is just another of the traitorous organizations, in addition to the US Congress, working to bring this country down. Moody’s was instrumental in upgrading loads of trash so their Wall Street bankster/cronies could keep the mortgage mills running and Moody could be paid for its deceitful tricks. The question that should be on the mind of every thinking American is: Shouldn’t we now shut Moody’s down? -- after a thorough legal investigation, of course, which will mean that we will FINALLY have to open the book on Wall Street and tell the tawdry tale of how a handful of greedy crooks (and their accomplices, i.e. Moody's and Standard & Poors) took this country for a ride that has not yet ended and may yet end in the dissolution of our country?

Shouldn’t we tell Moody’s: You have a choice: Shut up or shut down ??? In any case, it's not normal procedure to heed the proclamations of liars who have shown a propensity to aid and abet crooks.

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 11 years 46 weeks ago

David, I too give the chimps more credit, I suspect a Cantor in the chimp world would be quickly ostracized..... to put it nicely, for the common survival of the species!

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 11 years 46 weeks ago

Elioflight, there is a last straw and these republican maniacs are hellbent on finding it! "When you aint got nothing you got nothing left to lose"....wait and see what happens when multi more millions face total loss, it's already in the history books.

I want to see them try the Barbara Bush, "Oh they're doing just fine", carpet sweep this time!

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 11 years 46 weeks ago

Besides the treacherous little man...."I want what I want when I want it".... who stands to profit from a credit default, I have several additional reasons to give our, under republican siege nation, a rating of "RAPIDLY MOVING TOWARDS FEUDAL JUNK STATUS."

We are the only industrialized country with the economic idiocy of not having universal health care!

The republican economic terrorists insist upon tax breaks for companies sending jobs to foreign slave markets, thereby expanding domestic unemployment!

We have a military industrial complex giddy as hell for us to spend billions on bombs to fight an enemy that makes homemade ieds.

We have a Supreme Court pissing all over Democracy while it has it in a death grip!

We have fools that think working class people like me pay no taxes!

I could keep going, but think I've made my case for junk status!

Tee Quake's picture
Tee Quake 11 years 46 weeks ago

Although I usually fall far right-of-center, politically, and strongly oppose President Obama’s global, socialist outlook, I regularly visit your web site, anyway, because you seem genuine and sincere; one of the few political commentators (from either side of the political spectrum) who often offers meaningful analysis and intelligent rationale for the viewpoints expressed (unlike many others, right and left, who hurl outrageous insults, half-truths, and lies, merely to invoke a response and build readership). Tonight, however, your views concerning the debt-ceiling debate came as a surprise. You make it sound as though President Obama is pursuing the sole rational, reasonable approach, only to be repeatedly thwarted by rascally republicans. Neither President Obama and the democrats, nor the republicans, have been negotiating in good faith. The ongoing shenanigans of the President, and Congressional representatives, on both sides of the aisle, are equally responsible for this crisis, at best. President Obama has done nothing special to earn the “white knight” status you suggest.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 46 weeks ago

Obama became our President because the majority of voters believed in all he said prior to the election. The reason why so many of his constituents, those who voted for him, are unhappy with him is because he continually let them down. Aside from a couple of verbal butting heads with the Republicans all he could do was try to compromise and he failed miserably giving away everything that he said he stood for. The ObamaCare Health bill was a givaway to the Health Insurance companies and pharmaceuticals. It was originally a Republican plan anyway. Forcing people to make huge payments to Insurance Companies, even though they would not be able to "drop" you or not reimburse you for medical expenses due to "pre-existing conditions" can still raise their rates based on them or on any cost you might cause them.

So, largely, Obama has done a lot of it to himself. Don't blame the Republicans for looking out for their interests when you don't blame your own President for not looking out for ours. The final straw is his willingness to compromise away our social programs. Especially when they waste so many dollars on their "murder incorporated" wars that waste lives in illegal wars (mass murderers).

Obama is not a Democrat...he is a Republican looking out for the best interests of the wealthy.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 46 weeks ago

Right on...Keith Olberman!!!

Also, If you were entertained and thrilled with the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, and know...all of the killings of civilians with drones...and the torture chambers in the US ran in Guantanamo....well...wait...there's even predicted...we have been moving into there's Somalia....US run torture gulags...JSOC hit men are assassinating so-called "terrorists" (aren't they all?...everyone but us...right?) and more drone attacks...aren't we great? The US won't own up to it but Jeremy Scahill has broken a story on The Nation and was on Amy Goodman's Democracy Now for an interview.
where you can also find the link to watch Jeremy Scahill interview.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 46 weeks ago

Wisconsin primaries weren't fooled by the fake Democrats that the Republicans put up. Now how many Americans will continue to be fooled by the fake Democrat that is now in the office of the President...Obama?

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 46 weeks ago

Carl Sagan: "Dragon In My Garage"
The one true god is.....wait for it.....
The Flying Spaghetti Monster....of course!
Pastafarians unite! Aaaargggg!

notchakotay's picture
notchakotay 11 years 46 weeks ago

President Obama can avoid default while putting it to the Republicans without a rise in the debt ceiling. All he needs to do is -and he can do this legally once the debt ceiling is reached on Aug. 02- simply reallocate funding to shut down all the Republican priority programs and all the Republican Congressmen's pork. He will have a de facto line item veto on the entire budget. Cut wasteful and duplicitous defense programs, wholesale. Cut subsidies to oil companies. Eliminate oil depletion allowances. Issue stop work orders on juicy contracts for nonessential activities like those many consulting firms provide. Cut off all the mercinary contracts and assign soldiers to perform those functions -or eliminate them altogether. Get out of Iraq and Afghanistan. End subsidies to large corporate farm operations. Actually increase staffing of IRS and prioritize corporate and high income audits. End the war on drugs. Refuse to dedicate any resources to issuing permits for mountain top mining, fracking, etc. thereby shutting it down but keep up enforcement. There are a million things President Obama can do to save money but hurt the moneyed interests behind Cantor, McConnell, and colleagues. And the U.S. won't default.

wmstoll's picture
wmstoll 11 years 46 weeks ago

Because of the size of the US debt, the countries of the world have been talking about replacing the dollar as the reserve currency for some time now.

Thom's Blog Is On the Move

Hello All

Thom's blog in this space and moving to a new home.

Please follow us across to - this will be the only place going forward to read Thom's blog posts and articles.

From The Thom Hartmann Reader:
"Thom Hartmann channels the best of the American Founders with voice and pen. His deep attachment to a democratic civil society is just the medicine America needs."
Tom Hayden, author of The Long Sixties and director, Peace and Justice Resource Center.
From The Thom Hartmann Reader:
"Right through the worst of the Bush years and into the present, Thom Hartmann has been one of the very few voices constantly willing to tell the truth. Rank him up there with Jon Stewart, Bill Moyers, and Paul Krugman for having the sheer persistent courage of his convictions."
Bill McKibben, author of Eaarth
From Screwed:
"Hartmann speaks with the straight talking clarity and brilliance of a modern day Tom Paine as he exposes the intentional and systematic destruction of America’s middle class by an alliance of political con artists and outlines a program to restore it. This is Hartmann at his best. Essential reading for those interested in restoring the institution that made America the envy of the world."
David C. Korten, author of The Great Turning and When Corporations Rule the World