Democrats & Liberals Archives

No Retreat, No Surrender, Just a lot of Friendly Fire

Define Partisan. Okay, Websters takes me up on that challenge. The first definition: “a firm adherent to a party, faction, cause, or person ; especially : one exhibiting blind, prejudiced, and unreasoning allegiance” The second: ” a member of a guerrilla band operating within enemy lines”

Consider the unanimous votes in the House. Then consider the Republicans in the Senate. There's a reason a few broke off to vote with the Democrats, aside from whatever promises were made: They're all from states that have gone significantly blue in the past few years. Even so, they face bitter reprisals from their party.

It's unnatural for every Republican in Congress to agree. Surely, some have more liberal constituents, and more liberal sensibilities. Many vote against the bill against their district's own interests. There's a good bit of anecdotal evidence to indicate that a good number of Republicans are voting against the way they really feel about the bill.

I can understand political caution. But with something this important, which they agree is important? What's the deal? Well, one part of it may be the issue of those who have diligently attempted to raise the level of the discourse. I knew certain Republicans regard opposition to the war as treason, but to describe support for the stimulus package that way... Well, I guess you have to have that sort of perspective that defines disagreements on policy like that. But one thing for certain: there are powerful interest groups among the Republicans that have little tolerance for compromise, and leave the GOP with little room, as a consequence, to manuever.

Also helping to raise the discourse is our friend Rush, who gives his heartfelt good wishes for the President and the Congressional majority he leads: I hope he fails.

Note a fine distinction here: he doesn't merely think that he fails. No, he could have simply said: I hope he doesn't screw up as badly as I think he will, or I think this stimulus bill will crater, I hope I'm wrong. No, he says liberalism is the problem, and he just hopes it will fail. Which means he acknowledges the possiblity that it might not. Which means, his problem is less that things might work, and more that they will work in a way he doesn't want them to work. If you think I'm stretching it, Rush repeated himself for emphasis, just in case you were finding a reasonable argument to rationalize his with.

If Republicans had done great with economic policy to this point, if their tax policies and their regulatory policies had, in their purest form, succeeded beyond our wildest dreams, there might be an argument for that. But as the Republicans pried more and more of their rivals hold on policy off of the system, as they destroyed more and more of the New Deal protections and made the concerns of workers and consumers irrelevant to government, the worse things got, until finally, last year, the system snapped. These aren't alternative policies which might work, policies that could be held up side by side with the stimulus and other initiatives coming from President Obama's White House. These policies are the critical points of failure that have America more indebted and in deeper economic trouble than it's been for a long time. The Republican plan can fairly be regarded as an attempt to wallow in current failures for the sake of philosophy, and perhaps nostalgia for the power they lost pushing the fatal policies. But try telling some Republicans that, particularly the ones running the show in Washington.

The claim is going around that stimulus made the Great Depression worse. If you want to know just how little serious regard this should be taken in, consider what supply-sider Bruce Bartlett has to say about it. Bartlett is unsparing about what he thinks FDR and his folks did wrong, but he's no less sparing in calling the Republicans on their claims. In short, he says FDR stimulated too little, not too much, and that the WWII part of the Republican's argument forgets a fairly important fact about what that war brought about: a very high level of government spending in the Domestic Economy.

Others bring up Japan's stimulus, but neglect the fact that many Depression-Era mistakes, such as tightening the money supply and being stingy and inconsistent with stimulus packages, have lead to their efforts' failure to raise Japan from its doldrums.

It gets even better if you look at things from the perspective of the compromise the Centrist Democrats and Moderate Republicans required to get their votes on the bill. When the choice is passing something or not passing something, sometimes you cut just to cut, but in the process, we lost many productive parts of the bill, including billions to help states make up shortfalls.

So, lets be clear what's going on here. The Republicans are fighting either to support failed policies, or to avoid being picked off by hyperaggressive interest groups. They're trying to fight the policy debate they lost in the 1930's. The Centrists are trying to square the difference, but may repeat some of the mistakes that FDR and others have made trying to be too budget conscious when the point IS to spend more, and when the relative efficacy of the stimulus provisions matters more than keeping the budget outlay as small as possible.

Which is to say that a lot of this struggle and fighting is pretty pointless. America's interests are in the balance. By all means, pick the best methods to stimulate the economy. But don't base those methods on outdated theories that have proved mistaken. By all means, lets avoid Japan and America's mistakes in times before. But let's understand those mistakes for what they are, not for what our ideology would have them be. By all means, craft a policy that will be acceptable to the center. But let's define moderation more along the lines of how we approach figuring out a solution, not along the lines of just mixing the policy recipes arbitrarily.

Seriously, part of what got us here is an increasing sclerosis of one party's ideology. The Republicans have gotten to the point, and perhaps have been at the point for a long time where they consider their political rivals enemies of their country. Not merely wrong, but malicious. Not merely of a different mind, but supporters of foreign enemies. Not merely out to shape policy their own way, but out to actively destroy the country and its interests. It's gotten to such a point where somebody actually thinks its justifiable to model their political practices after one of our enemies. There's loyal opposition, and then there's this.

Here's the thing. Many Democrats like myself thought that at different points, such as the previous two elections, the Republicans would take a look at where their belligerence and refusal to compromise or negotiate on policy had led them, at where the voters were coming down on the verdicts for their behavior, and they would come to their senses, and embrace a true spirit of bipartisanship. You know, one where they actually have to give up some of their agenda items. Democrats were willing to take a significant hit to the stimulus bill to get it passed. The Republicans, though, showed no interest in good faith negotiations. When you essentially, artificially force just about every Republican to vote the same way, no matter how they may fall themselves on the issue, then your brand of bipartisanship can be pretty much described in the terms that Conservative activist Grover Norquist described it.

What are we supposed to do? Let discredited policy continue and intensify? Conform to the consistency of policy prescriptions from those who were never self-consistent in their politics to begin with? Continue to let the Republicans in Washington indulge their delusions of grandeur as they purposefully seek to exploit any and every sign of failure they can dig up?

Rather than be constructive, the Republicans are seeking to make life difficult for the other party. Maybe this appeals to some of you, but the hard reality is, our problems won't wait for those who care first about politics to win and grow up enough to deal with them. The good of the country must come first. Those who fail to see to that will find that even if their opponents go down in defeat, that their jealous sentiments of rivalry won't translate to support from the voters, but the opposite.

Posted by Stephen Daugherty at February 15, 2009 12:49 PM
Comments
Comment #275559

Many vote against for the bill against their district’s own interests.

Posted by: Jim M at February 15, 2009 2:46 PM
Comment #275560

Rather than be constructive, the Republicans Democrats are seeking to make life difficult for the other party.

Posted by: Honest at February 15, 2009 2:58 PM
Comment #275562

Jim M-
I think I provided plenty of evidence to suggest that their interests lay with the bill, not against it. You can play with the words, but are the realities so easy to manipulate?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 15, 2009 3:11 PM
Comment #275563

Realities like the reality of how short our economic reality will fall of our economic potential?

I mean, the big problem with the argument that Stimulus spending will displace private investment is the massive shortfall in private investment that’s already underway. But instead of trying to shape things to where the least private investment is displaced, the Republicans decide to do nothing. Well, doing nothing is going to leave a great deal of America’s workforce and economic strength idle.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 15, 2009 3:17 PM
Comment #275574

The Rpblcns are betting that the stimulus won’t help enough to keep the Dems in power. The Dems are hoping to get the census to do that. It’s pretty funny that Lush Rimbaugh seems to be in charge of the Rpblcn party, I would prefer [deleted] Dana Perino. I also find Axelrod amusing as an administration spokesperson on the Sunday shows. As predicted the outgoing POTUS continues to eff us all. The economy won’t turn around quickly enough, but I don’t see how that can really help the Rpblcns, being out of power and patriotically relying on hard times to help them out.

Posted by: ohrealy at February 15, 2009 5:42 PM
Comment #275582

Lush is risk taking a-hole with an astute understanding of his idiot audience. Andy Griffith portrayed him in a Face in the Crowd, years before he existed. He’s rich and won’t have serious consequence if he loses his audience, much like a former president, except to his own Narcissism. That “conservatives” follow a divorced pill head is interesting. I guess a dimwitted, dry drunk isn’t much better.

Posted by: gergle at February 15, 2009 11:45 PM
Comment #275584

Rush keeps his audience because he makes people feel bad and small to be liberals, and great about being hardline conservatives.

The trouble with the current Republican brand of conservatism is that it turns practically the rest of America into enemies to be opposed and/or subjugated, and not just in a political sense. That’s not good for anybody.

The Republicans don’t have to agree on everything, they just have to be agreeable. Maybe after 2010, they’ll realize the former days of their dominance are over, and aren’t coming back the way things are going. There’s more than one way to skin a cat, and more than one way to express philosophy. The Republicans destroyed the world where they could dictate terms to everybody else.

Rush doesn’t want to give up his power. He doesn’t want to share his audience with the wider world. He doesn’t want them leaving for those shores, away from his influence. Rush is only indispensable to the degree that he is the exclusive voice of reason for his audience. He will tell any lie and oppose even things that are in America’s interest because he wants to remain the King of the Golden Mike.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 16, 2009 7:19 AM
Comment #275586

Ohrealy has it correct: “The Rpblcns are betting that the stimulus won’t help enough to keep the Dems in power.”

It doesn’t matter to them that the vast majority of economists recommend urgent and extensive government spending to mitigate the downward economic spiral. By de-coupling from any stimulus package, they are attempting to give exclusive ownership of the crisis to the Democrats. It is a crass, purely political strategy. Power trumps national interests.


Posted by: Rich at February 16, 2009 9:03 AM
Comment #275590

>By de-coupling from any stimulus package, they are attempting to give exclusive ownership of the crisis to the Democrats. It is a crass, purely political strategy. Power trumps national interests.
Posted by: Rich at February 16, 2009 09:03 AM

Rich,

When describing the Republican agenda you might want to switch your last word, ‘interests’, to the word ‘survival’. The Republicans are not interested in America at all…they have interest only in Republicans. It has got to be the most short-sighted political party this world has ever witnessed.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 16, 2009 10:19 AM
Comment #275592

Daugherty writes; “Well, doing nothing is going to leave a great deal of America’s workforce and economic strength idle.”

I would remind Mr. Daugherty that I posted many ideas for a stimulus from conservatives that I believe would serve the nation better. That you didn’t read them, or agree with them is not a reason to ignore them. To pretend that conservatives and R’s offered no plans of their own is simply not true.

Rich writes; “It doesn’t matter to them that the vast majority of economists recommend…”

Rich obviously didn’t read the post I provided linking an ad in the NY Times featuring 200 top economists who all agreed that the liberal spending plan was bad for America.

Posted by: Jim M at February 16, 2009 10:47 AM
Comment #275593

Yea, it has to be Republicans in general, doesn’t it. There is just no way in the world that it could be leftist policy.

You guys are pissed off at Rush because he tells you what tens of millions of Americans believe? Maybe instead of condemning everybody who dares question liberal policy, you should be trying to figure out why tens of millions are against this awful and harmful plan.
Maybe instead of worrying about what Rush says, you should ask people such as myself why they contacted their Reps almost a hundred times demanding they vote no on this or NEVER receive my vote again, NO MATTER WHAT.

It’s not Rush, it’s your policy!

Posted by: kctim at February 16, 2009 11:06 AM
Comment #275596

Jim M-
I can recall you recommending raising taxes. That’s one proposal that nobody should agree with. Everytime somebody’s raised taxes in this environment, whether its FDR or the leaders of the Japanese government, it’s deepened the problem

As for the other proposals, post them here.

On the subject of economists? If you’re going to base an argument on numbers, base them on the numbers that tell us where this economy is going. Your argument is basically that because two hundred economists think the Stimulus is bad, that it’s not good policy.

My argument is, we’re facing a very real lag between potential economic strength and growth and actual, and that to bring about the use of more of that potential economic strength, we’re going to have to push a lot of money into the economy right now. With prime rates at zero, the Fed would be pushing a string. With most banks likely insolvent, they won’t be any help, no matter how we entice them. Government’s the only entity left capable of pushing the funds, and we have historical evidence that such stimulus works, when it’s large enough.

Besides, you don’t think there aren’t two hundred economists in the country that think the other way? Let’s hear their arguments and judge those, not the number of economists willing to take out an ad.

kctim-

Yea, it has to be Republicans in general, doesn’t it. There is just no way in the world that it could be leftist policy.

The Republicans in Congress almost universally voted the same way, among them many who might have otherwise voted with the Stimulus, responding to the large numbers of their constituents who do favor the stimulus.

As for whether it’s leftist, who gives a S*&*? Do you think most people like me are getting up and asking ourselves whether this fits a certain philosophy? I mean, when you have Bruce Bartlett, the guy who helped deconstruct much of the New Deal under Reagan, pushing not only for stimulus, but for the maximum we can manage, then that says something for this notion that this is only something the left can find merit in.

You guys are pissed off at Rush because he tells you what tens of millions of Americans believe?

No. We’re pissed off at him because he’s a belligerent jerk who can’t seem to lay down his partisan hatred of liberals, even if it means hoping for the failure of Obama’s efforts to help out this country.

There are plenty of people, let me tell you, who question liberal policy, even among liberals. Hell, they were among the folks we were negotiating with in the Senate to get the required votes! Read what I wrote, what I linked to. But you know what? Most of those people are willing to talk with us like adults. Rush is like an adolescent punk bully who isn’t happy unless he’s getting his way just how he likes it.

As for speaking for tens of millions of Americans? if we make this a match about numbers, then let me put it to you this way. Fine, Rush speaks for this vocal minority, and he can flood folks phonelines with the angry voices of dittoheads.

But Barack Obama speaks on behalf of Tens of millions of American directly, and well over a hundred million by the looks of these polls

There’s a reason that the Democrats are enjoying 60% approval in Congress right now, and the Republicans are still in Bush territory.

Look, this is a Democracy. The majority of folks support us, want us to do things the way we’ve promised to do them. You folks dismiss that as leftist policy. Fine. But that doesn’t mean you get to dictate to us how we run a government we’ve earned our control over. Why must we keep making concessions here? Why are only Democrats supposed to do that? Why are we the partisans when we make the outreach, and you folks do the stonewalling?

Why is it only the Republicans who are supposed to cater to their constituents? It’s almost like you’re saying “okay, you won the election, now lets do things like we were doing them or we’ll throw fits and call you names.”

I think the patience for that kind of arrogance is pretty much at an end.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 16, 2009 12:29 PM
Comment #275601

I find it interesting that some find such unwarranted confidence in PO and the liberal congress.

PO was the junior senator from Illinois with no business experience and very little legislative experience or bills which passed carrying his name as originator. His great success to date is winning the election. Now, wearing the mantle of president we are to believe he has suddenly acquired great stature as a thinker and doer by virtue of sleeping every night in the White House.

Folks, it just doesn’t work that way. PO at this point is living off winning an election that could hardly be lost rather than reputation, experience or other accomplishment.

What some believe is faith in him should be correctly identified as fear of the unknown. His greatest support is from those who have lost faith in themselves and who have been bludgeoned by government over the years to believe that their salvation depends upon the largess of nanny government.

Why else would some applaud the spending of trillions of dollars we don’t have by politicians who have not even read the legislation they voted upon?

Many on watchblog have expressed the Cavalier attitude that any spending, no matter how reckless, must be done immediately with little examination and should be applauded by conservatives even though it is directly opposed to our philosophy.

I have called for a reduction in wasteful spending…past and present. I have called for an increase in targeted taxes by the elimination of many of the useless and damaging incentives in our tax code given to some of the biggest corporate and individual thieves among us.

Does the nation need tax incentivized ethanol farmers who convert food to fuel with no apparent benefit to the nation? Does the nation need to spend billions of dollars to support ACORN and other such organizations operating as political party panderers while masquerading as something else?

Does the nation need 6 to 8 hundred thousand more federal employees? How have we managed so far without them?

Since no one truly understands what is in this spending bill how can anyone be so certain it will do any good? I read this morning that many of the outrageous spending in this bill was done so hastily that it was just hand written in the margins. This is good and thoughful legislation?

Daugherty, Remer and others on watchblog have decried the fact that R’s and conservatives have not signed onto this bill, that they are obstructionists. Then, they would have us believe that they are disturbed by this and worry for the future prospects of these very same people. They didn’t and don’t need R’s and conservatives to pass their liberal pablum. And yet, they wish to share the glory of this achievement with their opponents? Please, please sign onto this bill with us so we can share in the credit equally. Does this sound silly to anyone else?

Posted by: Jim M at February 16, 2009 1:25 PM
Comment #275603

Stephen
Sure, they might have otherwise voted with the Stimulus, but why do you automatically assume it is for political gain? Why could it not be because the plan is full of BS? Maybe more Republicans would have voted for the plan without all the BS the Democrats put in there.

“As for whether it’s leftist, who gives a S*&*?”

People like me do Stephen, and that is why you are a liberal and I am not. Why you favor a larger intrusive govt and I do not. Why you are afraid of losing the way of life you have become accustomed to if this bill did not pass and why I fear losing the American way of life because it passed.
I know its cliche, but I would rather be free and starving than a slave who is fed.

“No. We’re pissed off at him because he’s a belligerent jerk who can’t seem to lay down his partisan hatred of liberals, even if it means hoping for the failure of Obama’s efforts to help out this country”

It is a hatred of liberal policy, not people, and he is so successful because so many others share his beliefs. You are in dreamland if you think everybody would be embracing liberalism if not for people like Rush.
Rush, his supporters and people like me do not hope for the “failure of Obama’s efforts to help out this country.” We very much want the country to stay strong, but we are not willing to give up our principles and freedoms so that the Obama can help out this country by changing it into something it was not to be.

“Rush is like an adolescent punk bully who isn’t happy unless he’s getting his way just how he likes it”

Rush is nothing more than a radio talkshow host, he does not make policy. His message is shared by tens of millions and you would do yourself a favor by trying to understand why they agree with him and fighting back. Whining and complaining about a “bully” doesn’t work in the schoolyard and its not working with this. OR, as always and as is expected, you can consider them a “vocal minority” and simply dismiss them.

“Look, this is a Democracy.” The majority of folks support us, want us to do things the way we’ve promised to do them.”

Constitutional Republic, the majority does not rule over all. You seemed to be all for this when you were the minority. Surprising your tone has now changed? Nope.

“You folks dismiss that as leftist policy. Fine. But that doesn’t mean you get to dictate to us how we run a government we’ve earned our control over.”

Here’s some news for you Stephen, a simple majority does not mean you get to dictate how govt should be ran. It means you should do what you campaigned on and run it with the other side. And bowing down to your beliefs is not what people should have to do in order to be “working together.”

“Why must we keep making concessions here? Why are only Democrats supposed to do that?”

Your not. Dems could have taken out the BS and favors on this bill and the Reps could have given up on some things…that would be working together.

“Why are we the partisans when we make the outreach, and you folks do the stonewalling?”

For the same reason you consider the Republicans the partisans when they reach out and you guys shut them out…politics as usual.

“Why is it only the Republicans who are supposed to cater to their constituents? It’s almost like you’re saying “okay, you won the election, now lets do things like we were doing them or we’ll throw fits and call you names.””

Do you say this with a straight face? After the lefts actions over the last 8+ years? You guys threw a fit and shouted names over just about everything. Hell, you even did so on the things you agreed to and signed when it didn’t turn out to be politically beneficial.

The Obama ran on working together and so far, working together means being quiet and agreeing with him.
As predicted, the only thing that has “changed” is the D for the R and the cheerleaders who blindly follow - its business as usual.

Posted by: kctim at February 16, 2009 1:36 PM
Comment #275607

Kctim,
Yes, we should spend money, as much as possible, as fast as possible. In this situation, short of criminal intent, there is virtually no such thing as wasteful spending.

We are experiencing asset deflation. If we are fortunate enough to pull out of the deflationary spiral- and that is by no means certain- then we will have to deal with an enormous debt and the prospect of inflation.

There are no good choices. It is already bad. Thanks to deregulation and privatization we liberals have come into control of a government with $10 trillion in debt and a deficit of who-knows-how-much. Thanks to conservatives, we are living through an economic disaster, and the very real possibility of a depression.

We can do nothing and live through a deflation and depression, or we can attempt to combat it, at the risk of an even bigger debt and inflation. Easy choice. We have to try.

You have the comfort of knowing things are going to go badly no matter what. Congratulations. You can stay on the sideline and be right about how bad this will turn out, because that’s a given. It will be unpleasant regardless of anyone’s efforts. Obama and Democrats and liberals like me are trying to keep it from being even worse.

There is a good chance the situation is too bad to salvage.

Hey, I know! Let’s privatize social security, and put it into the hands of the investment banks! That way invidivuals can invest their retirement in the stock market! There’s no way they can lose!

Sorry, kctim. Conservatives and libertarians have done terrible harm to the country, and if they had not been stopped, they would have made it even worse.

Posted by: phx8 at February 16, 2009 2:10 PM
Comment #275608

>Hey, I know! Let’s privatize social security, and put it into the hands of the investment banks! That way invidivuals can invest their retirement in the stock market! There’s no way they can lose!
Sorry, kctim. Conservatives and libertarians have done terrible harm to the country, and if they had not been stopped, they would have made it even worse.
Posted by: phx8 at February 16, 2009 02:10 PM

phx8,

Normally you would have hit a home run with this, but the people you are talking to don’t believe in Social Security. Talking sense has no impact on deaf ears.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 16, 2009 2:34 PM
Comment #275609

Ahhh,

Once more basking in the fruitless effort at having a dialog with people from the right (conservative) side. Geesh, even now, when they have been rejected by history and the polling place these brain-dead die-hards just cannot accept reality — not the reality of being voted out so much as the reality (and responsiblity) for how THEY screwed things up SO BADLY.
And this is not the first time
They did it under Reagan and made him a God for it
We had a Savings and Loan Scandal after HIS de-regulation, now comes the Banking scandal after Bush’s deregulation — and the tons of deficits due to a totally unnecessary war in Iraq (Talk about porkbarrel!!! — I do not hear anybody from the right decrying the Billions that went to Halliburton for NOTHING and the BILLIONS totally LOST in IRAQ (in cash no less) — But heaven forbid the “leftists” want to spend 40 billion on building schools in the US!!!! NOW THAT IS WASTEFUL According to these failed prophets of Mohammed Reagan.
You have been discredited, shown to be charlatans and without any redeeming value whatsoever now that you choose partisenship and idolotry over the national interest.
Just keep it up, you will end up playing NO ROLE in the national dialog as more and more become disgusted with your behavior and TREASON!

Posted by: Russ at February 16, 2009 2:46 PM
Comment #275610

Phx8
Yes, everybody knows you guys want and need all the blame for everything to be placed on the Republicans, even for the years you guys were in control. Same old politics, same old BS, same old claim of change that never comes.

You blame the entire crisis on the tons of deregulation and privatization the Republicans gave us, while ignoring the fact there wasn’t tons of either and that the leftists were silent and sat by and did nothing to prevent it.

I have no idea if things are going to go badly no matter what, I just know what is not worth giving up in order to prevent the worst.

You say liberals such as yourself, the Obama and Democrats are trying to keep it from getting worse, but what you see as being worse, greatly differs from what I see as being worse.

“Hey, I know! Let’s privatize social security, and put it into the hands of the investment banks! That way invidivuals can invest their retirement in the stock market! There’s no way they can lose!”

Hmmm, in the hands of investment bankers or in the hands of govt who is trillions in debt and will have to make cuts and start dictating who deserves what? Sorry, but again, I would rather lose a few bucks than become dependent on a big brother govt.

Sorry, Phx8. Liberalism has done terrible harm to our country, and because of it, the people are now dependent on govt and are not prepared to ride through the rough times. That is, afterall, where your fear comes from, right? Don’t worry my friend, I’m going to do what I can to help things turn out for whats best for our country. While so many will be fighting for their next govt handout, I’ll still be fighting for our rights and freedoms.

Posted by: kctim at February 16, 2009 2:52 PM
Comment #275611

It has become a mantra, how the big bad ‘gov’ment’ ain’t nothin’ but bad news, and could not help an ant out of a hill with a bulldozer. These folks somehow forget that ‘in order to form a more perfect union’ means forming a gov’ment. The very people right leaning posters here revere so much, actually formed a government…huh!…who’d a thunk it?

Posted by: Marysdude at February 16, 2009 3:14 PM
Comment #275612

Dude
Talking sense? How much sense does it make for people to sit around and wait for their next govt check? How much sense does it make to worry about standing in line to get the next govt handout during a recession or depression? How much sense does it make for one to want a larger and more intrusive govt because they are so fearful that govt won’t take care of them anymore?

If that is the “sense” you are talking about making, I’m glad I turned a deaf ear to it. At least I won’t be living in fear.

Posted by: kctim at February 16, 2009 3:15 PM
Comment #275613

>While so many will be fighting for their next govt handout, I’ll still be fighting for our rights and freedoms.
Posted by: kctim at February 16, 2009 02:52 PM

kctim,

I paid into my Social Security account, and my various bosses paid into that same account, so I’ll ignore the insult about fighting for a handout. I spent twenty years in the Marine Corps, with two and a half tours in a combat zone, and gave up a knee for the cause, so I’ll also ignore the insult about how YOU will be fighting for my rights and freedoms…

Posted by: Marysdude at February 16, 2009 3:19 PM
Comment #275614

Daugherty writes; “Define Partisan. Okay, Websters takes me up on that challenge. The first definition: “a firm adherent to a party, faction, cause, or person ; especially : one exhibiting blind, prejudiced, and unreasoning allegiance”

Let’s examine just one on his list of “Partisan”, that being, a firm adherent to cause and unreasoning allegiance.

George Will writes today in Townhall…

The Law of Doomsaying

Montaigne’s axiom: “Nothing is so firmly believed as what we least know.”

As global levels of sea ice declined last year, many experts said this was evidence of man-made global warming. Since September, however, the increase in sea ice has been the fastest change, either up or down, since 1979, when satellite record-keeping began. According to the University of Illinois’ Arctic Climate Research Center, global sea ice levels now equal those of 1979.

An unstated premise of eco-pessimism is that environmental conditions are, or recently were, optimal. The proclaimed faith of eco-pessimists is weirdly optimistic: These optimal conditions must and can be preserved or restored if government will make us minimize our carbon footprints, and if government will “remake” the economy.

Because of today’s economy, another law — call it the Law of Clarifying Calamities — is being (redundantly) confirmed. On graphs tracking public opinion, two lines are moving in tandem and inversely: The sharply rising line charts public concern about the economy, the plunging line follows concern about the environment. A recent Pew Research Center poll asked which of 20 issues should be the government’s top priorities. Climate change ranked 20th.

Real calamities take our minds off hypothetical ones. Besides, according to the U.N.’s World Meteorological Organization, there has been no recorded global warming for more than a decade, or one-third of the span since the global cooling scare.

Posted by: Jim M at February 16, 2009 3:37 PM
Comment #275615

Dude
You do realize we were talking about a possible depression, right? Do you think what you and your bosses paid into SS will mean squat when the govt you gave your money to is bankrupt?

I too have served my time in a combat zone, but the rights and freedoms we fought for then has nothing to do with the rights and freedoms we will be fighting for if a depression comes.

There were no insults, just facts. Facts best not be ignored.

Posted by: kctim at February 16, 2009 3:44 PM
Comment #275616

“Do you say this with a straight face? After the lefts actions over the last 8+ years? You guys threw a fit and shouted names over just about everything. Hell, you even did so on the things you agreed to and signed when it didn’t turn out to be politically beneficial.”

“You blame the entire crisis on the tons of deregulation and privatization the Republicans gave us, while ignoring the fact there wasn’t tons of either and that the leftists were silent and sat by and did nothing to prevent it.”

Jeez kctim I was gonna say that many haven’t been silent, but you seem conflicted on whether those that oppose your viewpoint have or haven’t. The problem we have is eventually even many of the elected dems jump on the small government conservative bandwagon during the good times. Grover Cleveland during the gilded age, congressionl dems prior to the great depression and Clinton in the latest go around of small government conservatism. It makes it hard for those that have opposed the fiscal policies of these SGC’s that always end up in a financial meltdown to be heard. But that being said isn’t it time for those on the far right to get a grip on history, throw the revisionism that muddies the water on the debate out the door and listen to the other side. With the track record of the SGC’s certainly we should at the very least give them little say in economic issues.

Has anyone heard what them 200 CATO Institute sponsored “top” economist have determined, evidently in lockstep, is the solution to the mini depression?

Posted by: j2t2 at February 16, 2009 4:04 PM
Comment #275618

Jim M,
You are misrepresenting the facts, and that is putting it politely. George Will is a liar. To pick through an article mentioning example after example of climate change, and then to cherry pick one example, and cite the cooling in the South Pacific caused by the La Nina as a refutation of Global Warming, is a noxious lie.

Here is a link to the WMO:
http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=29342&Cr=climate&Cr1=

Virtually every WMO article acknowledges climate change, and numerous links are provided to the IPCC 2007 report. In the article linked above:

“The combined sea-surface and land-surface air temperature for 2008 is estimated at 0.31 degrees Celsius (C) or 0.56 Fahrenheit (F), above the 1961-1990 annual average of 14C, or 57.2F, while the Arctic Sea ice volume during the melt season was its lowest since satellite measurements began in 1979, the UN World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said.”


Posted by: phx8 at February 16, 2009 4:24 PM
Comment #275619

J2
There is no conflict. The left rant and raved about what the evil Republicans did, but they did nothing when they came into power or were warned.

You don’t “get a grip on history” by ignoring the first 100+ years of our history. You don’t “get a grip on history” by ignoring what was given up in order to get the socialism programs the left claims are the only answer.

Small govt did not bring us to this point, but I will guarantee you that the monstrous govt dependency we have now will make things worse.

Posted by: kctim at February 16, 2009 4:39 PM
Comment #275620

And if anyone is interested, here is a link to the University of Illinois Arctic Climate Research Center:

http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/

The home page repeatedly cites examples of Global Warming and provides numerous links, climate models, and supporting measurements and statistics. Do not let people like George Will and Jim M mislead! They cherry pick an isolated fact and project that as a representation of the overall picture, despite hundreds of other facts contradicting the one.

Neither the WMO nor the UI Artic Climate Research Center support Jim M’s nor George Will’s contentions about the climate.

Posted by: phx8 at February 16, 2009 4:43 PM
Comment #275621

Jim M-

His greatest support is from those who have lost faith in themselves and who have been bludgeoned by government over the years to believe that their salvation depends upon the largess of nanny government.

Which must mean that you’re a big strong independent type who bravely forges on without the help of the Federal Government.

Don’t flatter yourself. Most of us want to be successful on our own terms. We also, though, want government to police Wall Street and keep the decisions of business from blindsiding us and destroying our hopes and dreams before we even had a chance to stand up for ourselves.

Why else would some applaud the spending of trillions of dollars we don’t have by politicians who have not even read the legislation they voted upon?

Tell me something: where is the evidence that the lawmakers didn’t read the bill? Look, these guys had weeks, days and hours to read everything, or to have their staff read it and summarize for them. This is not the Patriot Act, which was rammed through at something like two in the morning.

Many on watchblog have expressed the Cavalier attitude that any spending, no matter how reckless, must be done immediately with little examination and should be applauded by conservatives even though it is directly opposed to our philosophy.

Did you bruise your knuckles on all those strawmen?

A philosophy can be a straitjacket for one’s actions, or a gravitational center. I showed you an example of somebody who despite their philosophy understood that the situation called for extreme answer. And even Lindsey Graham, no doubt a conservative, is conceding reluctantly that nationalizing the big banks may be necessary. Folks could have been making the compromises, and drawing the inevitable solution closer to Republican principles.

But that’s not what was done. You know, the Republicans could have mostly refused, and satisfied the constituents all around. They could have demonstrated their opposition without having to force every single Republican, no matter how liberal their district, to vote no.

Instead, they publically disown the legislation, and call it a stand on philosophy. I think somebody pointed out that the last time the Republicans stood on their philosophy like this, they lost even more seats in Congress.

The Republicans could have done a better job cleaning up the bill if they hadn’t been so eager to destroy it, and those who support it.

On Climate Change? George Will is flatly full of it. His source put out a press release saying that enough sea ice has gone away since +
1979 to equal California, Texas and Oklahoma’s land area combined. Additionally, the ice you have to worry about with sea levels is melting faster than the IPCC predicted.

As for Warming? This is where the right-wing climate deniers constantly tick me off. Every time the weather changes, they declare Climate change over and done with. Climate, though, is the average weather over time, and the last decade, since 1998, has been the hottest on record. It’s like dismissing a trend of heavier and more frequent severe thunderstorms in Houston on account of the fact we got hit by Ike.

Those in the know would tell you that we have a La Nina event going on, which will take the heat circulation in a different direction.

You call it a scare because you don’t operate from facts, but assumptions. The reality, if you look at the temperatures, reflects a real threat.

kctim-
You can say the plan is full of BS, but that in and of itself is a BS explanation. This is not me talking about most Republicans voting against it, motivated by personal principle. This is about every Republican voting the same way, an outcome that seems more like part of a political plan than it does the unlikely spontaneous reaction of a diverse group of legislators.

Yes, so you care whether something’s leftist. I get it. But does that make the bill bad or good, or is it the quality of the legislation? What’s more important that it works, or that it fits a philosophy?

As for what has me afraid? Well, gee, a deflationary spiral. Those things are just SUCH fun to experience. Good news is, prices have to drop on everything. Bad news is, Businesses die and take their jobs with them, because they structured their systems to operate under the higher prices. Nobody who can be taken seriously as an economist claims we’re not heading for such a situation.

As for this rhetoric:

I know its cliche, but I would rather be free and starving than a slave who is fed.

I have always wondered at folks on the Right who use this kind of language. Maybe folks like you should go live in a truly tyrannical country, or one truly free of all government interference. Then your nice little theories and philosophies about what “slavery” is, would get a nice, well-needed update.

And no, Rush DOES want Obama to fail. He explicitly says so. He repeated it for emphasis. You just don’t want to admit that he’d rather see the results of a failure to head off a deeper recession, than see a liberal program of spending work and save this country from it.

As for what this country was meant to be? We hold elections to determine that, not philosophizing contests. You may think you have the better ideas, but the price of seeing them enacted is to convince everybody else of that. This country determines its own destiny, not some party with an inflated opinion of itself.

I should know. For years, it determined it to the detriment of my party, and no amount of philosophizing on my part, or the part of my fellow Democrats, could change that.

We had to change as a party, change in our strategy and our goals to reclaim power. The Republicans don’t want to change. They don’t even want to entertain any policy that differs from what came before.

We don’t have the time for that. We don’t have the time to humor a party that won’t accept anything but the same old policy.

You can say liberalism did great harm to this country, but here’s how I see it: Liberalism saved it. We made capitalism safer, leaner, more purpose-driven, while the Republicans made it more reckless, more fixated on playing number games, and more bloated.

Want an example? We enforced anti-trust restrictions, they tore them down. Result? Great big companies that can take down our economy if we don’t help them. If you guys had listened to liberals, we certainly wouldn’t see even so conservative a man as Lindsey Graham talking about nationalizing banks. We separated financial institutions from one another, preventing companies from both financing debt and selling equity in those same companies. you folks let them together. Result? Businesses that had crap fundamentals were allowed by those companies to grow out of control.

Liberals did a lot of things to improve the economy, to maintain higher standards of behavior and accountability to shareholders. And for three or four generations, that worked. Too bad it offended conservative’s philosophy.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 16, 2009 5:05 PM
Comment #275624

Stephen
Anything not directly to stimulating the economy right now, is BS and favors. If so-called conservative politicians vote against it as a group, it is probably be because it is full of waste or it can seem they are doing so because they are doing it as a party. You choose the more sinister of the two purely for political reasons.

What makes the bill good or bad depends on if it is written to address the problem and what is added and taken away. Part of this bill addresses the economy, but too much of it does not.

“As for what has me afraid? Well, gee, a deflationary spiral. Those things are just SUCH fun to experience”

Mock if you wish, but the only reason a deflationary spiral has you so afraid is because you are not prepared for it. But why prepare for yourself when govt should be doing it for you. Didn’t work for Katrina and it won’t work for this. Sadly, it is probably too late.

“I have always wondered at folks on the Right who use this kind of language”

That is because we have a different set of values and views concerning our rights. Your threshold for being controlled and dependent is greater than mine. You accept that things must be taken from you for your own good, while I believe it is me who truely knows what is for my own good.

“And no, Rush DOES want Obama to fail. He explicitly says so”

Rush wants the Obama to fail because he will use a liberal policy to address the situation. Liberal policy is more govt and many people do want a larger and more intrusive govt. Whether it works or not is not the issue.

“This country determines its own destiny, not some party with an inflated opinion of itself”

A destiny which was not meant to be changed at the drop of a hat, that is how a democracy is ran.

“The Republicans don’t want to change”

Its been two freakin months and you have determined they do not want to “change?” IF Republicans want to be more socialist, their leaders will become more socialist. History proves that.

“You can say liberalism did great harm to this country, but here’s how I see it: Liberalism saved it. We made capitalism safer, leaner, more purpose-driven, while the Republicans made it more reckless, more fixated on playing number games, and more bloated”

Money does not drive my belief system, but even I have to laugh at that one. Liberalism added so much govt into our “free market” that it is hardly free anymore. Why? To get more money pumping into govt so it could grow. Yeah, great job, thanks alot.

Posted by: kctim at February 16, 2009 6:00 PM
Comment #275626

“You don’t “get a grip on history” by ignoring the first 100+ years of our history. You don’t “get a grip on history” by ignoring what was given up in order to get the socialism programs the left claims are the only answer.”

kctim I would not ask that the first 100 + years of our Country’s history be ignored but those years were back in the day when we were an agrarian society. The most relevant times for economic purposes would be more an industrial based economy such as the post civil war years onward. During the first 100 years we we had the same problems just not the data to prove all of them. People were by necessity more self sufficient than today, and much less specialized in their trade, occupation and/or profession. However Jefferson and Jackson warned and fought against the dangers of large corporations and banks and the power they exuded.

“Small govt did not bring us to this point, but I will guarantee you that the monstrous govt dependency we have now will make things worse.
Posted by: kctim at February 16, 2009 04:39 PM”

kctim, I have never said small government lead us to financial meltdown. I have always said it was the small government conservatives and their fiscal policies that have lead us down the path of financial ruination.

This monstrous government dependency thing needs to be more clearly defined IMHO as I don’t know of anyone that wants monstrous government dependency. Are you saying the additional funds for unemployment and an increase in workfare and foodstamps will cause a dependency on the government? Or are you speaking of the latest in a long line of bailouts for the financial institutions and their shareholders?

I don’t think anyone is particularly happy about this stimulus bill as it adds much to our debt. I also think it is safe to say that the new administration would have preferred to have not had to deal with a financial meltdown, millions unemployed and states reeling from the mini depression all left over from the previous administration.


Posted by: j2t2 at February 16, 2009 6:56 PM
Comment #275628

kctim-
Philosophical exuberance would not cause the entire Republican Party to vote unanimously no on the bill twice in a row. Somebody would get cold feet. Somebody would find the compromises workable. Somebody would be getting their hindquarters broiled by their constituents about opposing it. Somebody would break ranks with the party. Perhaps a great number of these people, wrong as they may be, have come to negative conclusions that they’re sticking to on principle. Good for them. But they would never make up 100% of the party outside the neverland of propaganda.

My sarcasm on deflationary spirals was firmly meant. The way people prepare for deflationary spirals makes it worse.

Let me explain: What do you do when everything starts to go to hell? You horde money. You might put it in a bank, rather than spend it. That’s not the best in these times, but worse, you might just put it under a mattress. Corporations and banks do the same, especially the ones that are essentially insolvent, but don’t want to say it out loud.

But of course, all this hording and holding back takes money out of the market, and that, of course takes it out of the hands of even more businesses and individuals.

Eventually, things work themselves out. But in a situation like this, the recovery might take years. Think flat economic growth for the next twenty years, or worse. Japan has yet to recover from its catastrophe.

Government must intervene, intervene strongly, and not wait for events to play themselves out. The key to economic recovery and long term healthy growth is real money circulating as broadly as it can. I won’t kid you, and neither will the man who I voted for: it will take some time to repair this economy. But the time to do the repairs is now.

That is because we have a different set of values and views concerning our rights. Your threshold for being controlled and dependent is greater than mine. You accept that things must be taken from you for your own good, while I believe it is me who truely knows what is for my own good.

No, You’re wrong. It’s not a difference of degree, but of kind. You are willing to have things taken from you by corporations who haven’t earned it. You have backed policies that make people like you and me more vulnerable to Wall Street and its economic imperatives. You rationalized these things as necessary, I rationalized other things.

The difference is one of whether you blind yourself to your dependence on others, as you accuse me of being blind to my own abilities to act independently.

What angers me about Rush is that he sees the failure of Obama’s policies in such abstract terms. I remember the same abstract terms being used to justify criticisms of Clinton’s pursuit of Bin Laden. But then of course, reality made things not quite so abstract, and everybody suffered. Our priorities should be to solve problems together, but if one party is more interested in fighting to further it’s political fortunes, than it is in being constructive, the priority of the Democratic party should be to solve those problems on its own.

A destiny which was not meant to be changed at the drop of a hat, that is how a democracy is ran.

It didn’t change at the drop of a hat. Your fellow travellers spent years building up the tensions that finally caused this shift. They failed to regulate Wall Street properly, and that became the current crisis. They failed to do much of anything right in good time with the Iraq war, and that became the ongoing quagmire most people want out of now. They did their best to give the advantage to the big corporations over the average worker and employee in America, and most Americans have seen their fortunes decline as a result. Now people want their prosperity back. Republicans resisted dealing with environmental challenges for the last generation, and now the results are rightfully scaring people.

And Katrina? You have to understand government isn’t just about beancounting. It’s not about the inherent value of putting that amount of money into an economy. It’s about where that money goes, how it is spent, and what the results are. Katrina was as much, if not more, a failure of management as it was a failure of getting the resources where they needed to be.

Americans are sick of following this particular destiny of yours. They’re sick of being told no by a bunch of people who have even had the decency, in all their wisdom, to get what they say yes to right.

What make a free market free is not the lack of government intervention, but the lack of a need for it to constantly micromanage that economy. Right now, Government’s going to have to manage huge portions of the economy that even under our most liberal periods were generally left to the businesses. But it’s necessary now because everythings gotten so screwed up. When and if we get this economy back up on its feet, we’re going to have to restructure it so it doesn’t need constant supervision, to where a culture of responsiblity develops. But people are going to have to put the errors of the past behind them, unless they seek to repeat them.

As for whether the Republicans want to change? I have watched them defy and continue to defy the public’s wishes for the past eight years, and they don’t seem willing to acknowledge anything can put their beliefs to the test and find them wanting.

At least, their leaders won’t let that happen. My sense is that at some point, something may happen to break the Republican’s solidarity, and at that point, though the short term drop in morale will be substantial, the party will relax the ideological spinchter-knot it’s been in, and the Republicans might be able to return to being a more moderate, more accessible party.

Or, they might just ride the current crisis down to an even worse reckoning. Time will tell.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 16, 2009 8:33 PM
Comment #275631

I think the definition of “partisan” has been provided pretty clearly (if unwittingly) here.

The Republicans voted against the biggest spending bill in the history of the world. One they hadn’t read (because they weren’t allowed the time to read it) and one which they weren’t allowed to participate in writing (because Democrats and special interest groups wrote it behind locked doors).

And this reflects badly on the Republicans?

The Democrats meanwhile vote almost in unison, and without reading it, for the biggest spending bill since the beginning of time. And this reflects well on them… because?

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at February 16, 2009 10:04 PM
Comment #275636

Jim M

BHO won. Get over it. 200 wrong economist hand picked and paid for by a right wing propaganda mill does not outwiegh common sense.

SD
For many Reps the question is not so much one of political survival but of staying out of prison.

Posted by: bills at February 16, 2009 11:21 PM
Comment #275639

LO-
Tell me something: if they hadn’t read it, how did they decide it was full of pork? To make one claim with credibility, they must give up the other. Either they skimmed the bill looking for junk to fight it on, and can’t be trusted on its general character, or they read it fully to find the objectionable sections, and lie every time they claim they were forced to vote for it without knowing the contents.

and one which they weren’t allowed to participate in writing (because Democrats and special interest groups wrote it behind locked doors

They did meet with them. They made a point of it. He did it with Republican Senators. He was talking with you people from the beginning and advising concessions.

I took pains to define partisan, because I wanted to stress the extent to which the Republicans took this whole mess.

The trick is, you want concessions the President can’t give without going back on what he promised. You want him to essentially rubberstamp your tax cut proposals and not spend so much, even though the amount of spending in a good stimulus bill of this kind MUST be high in order to do its job. It’s pointless to understimulate.

I mean, that’s even what Bruce Bartlett said, a reaganomics guru if there ever was one. The Republicans never seemed to have left the 1970s, in economic terms. Everything is solved by deregulating and cutting taxes.

You can talk about nobody reading it, but is that just a glib talking point, or did nobody really read it. With all the debates about all these different portions, the meetings and everything, that notion that everything was just rushed and nobody knew anything about just doesn’t hold water.

But then, that would seem an appropriate dilemma to pop up given the circumstances.

See, the reason for all these talking points is to rationalize a very partisan position: an entire party uniformly stonewalling policy they don’t like.

And why do I not think this just suddenly was provoked by the Democrats? Because you did it the last two years in the Senate. There is little to no evidence that your people have ever stopped pushing this kind of political antagonism. It was just hoped that at some point you folks would tire of doing this crap. But it doesn’t seem like the Republicans have their hostility towards the rest of the country and what it wants out of their system. You folks are still trying to dictate terms to the rest of us, and frustrate any deviation from your status quo. And what makes this worse is just how much damage that status quo has done.

I mean, the question is valid: should we follow discredited Republican philosophy, just to get you folks on our side? It would seem we can’t get you folks on our side unless we more or less do everything your way. And what’s the point of that? There’s negotiations, there’s listening, but there’s also judgement, and if the Republicans wish to inist on the same failed policies as their condition for bipartisanship then the country deserves better than a hamstrung compromise like that.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 17, 2009 12:43 AM
Comment #275644

Here is a good link on the economic condition for those that cannot seem to understand the difference between depression economies and normal ones;http://baselinescenario.com/2009/02/08/baseline-scenario-2909/

SD
Notice those same Rep senators that were more than willing to dump 3 trillion dollars in Iraq are now balking at less than one to help Americans.In a slightly more reactive country they would be hung from lamp post.
They may have succeeded. The stimulus plan has too many tax breaks and is just not big enough to do much more than mitagate some of the worst effects. I hope there are more to follow.

Posted by: bills at February 17, 2009 5:36 AM
Comment #275645

Stephen,
Great title; however, seeing that friendly fire is preventing both My Liberal and Conservatives from shooting the enemy, let me see if I cannot help both sides from shooting each other or their self in the foot. For why I have no doubt that the RNC used Rush to convince the Republican Elected Officials to vote no on the Stimuls Bill. To say that it is representative of all American Conservatives is wrong and can be found out if you care to listen to their point of view.

For why it may be hard to understand how a person could stand up for Big Business, yet say that he is looking out for the Individual. Have you every attempted to explain why “We the Corporation” is in charge of Government and Society and not “I the Idiot” for I do believe that Former President Cliton said it best when he stated that going forward Man is going to have to learn to live in a Shared Community.

Jim M.,
Why I can see you are upset that the Liberals and Media dare declare the Republican Party obstructionist; nevertheless, Its own convention in 2008 showed the World how devided the Conservative Movement in America really is. So why I have to agree with Stephen that it was part of a political play by Republicans to vote no on Americas’ Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. I hope that the Conservatives in America will not take rusns’ Advice had work to see President Obama and Congress fail in rebuilding the Economy and Financial Institutes of the United States of America. For why the Billionaries of Society may not suffer, the many Million and Billionaries becoming the next new Middle-Class will surely suffer carrying the Burden of Society on their back.

So why you may think that it is Liberal to have Government assist the Poor and Middle Class hard Working Americans in getting a decent Standard of Living. Unless the Republicans want to see another Wage War spraked around the World, the Conservative Movement in America better get over the fact that the Democrats are using the same political tactics and tricks played on them in 2002 when Rush and the RNC told them to vote for given President Bush the Power to go to War or risk being called Anti-American during the Election. Not fun when the shoe is on the other foot now is it.

kctm and Marysdude,
Why I enjoyed your remarks, you both missed te point of what Rush did and why the Liberals and Media are coming down so hard on the Republican Leadership.

For why a Business Person will do almost anything to keep from spending a dollar or going into debt, the Working Person sees that the Corporation no matter how big it gets can never provide them with all their wants and needs. And why I realize that it creates a solid wall between many Conservatives and Liberals, listening to Rush and following his Advice kctm has lead many of Republicans off the cliff.

Yes, he does make sense provided you are only willing to look through a very snall window of life; however, I have yet to hear Rush stand up for the Indivudls Right to belong to a team that differed in his political view or agenda. For example; with Energy Independence being the number one burning issue in America why has he not stepped up to support his fellow Conservative Mr. T. Boone Pickens Plan? Could it be all about the God Almighty Dollar or that he fears Change so much that even if Senator McCain was elected President that he would still wish him to fail.

No guys, Americans face the same problem and why there is no easy way out of the mess created here in the United States of America. Labor and Management is going to have to learn to work together in order to stop and solve the downward spiral of Americas’ Economy and Financial Systems of the 21st Century. For Trickle Me Down or Trickle Me Up unless the Average American Consumer is provided more money in their Monthly Budget and is willing to save and spend it than neither side can claim victory over the Beast of Nature built by our Elders and Powers-that-Be.

So if you choice to continue to play the Blame Game keep this in mind. The Republicans standing for Big Business and Old White Men may have an idea on how best to preserve the Corporation; however, divided against the Small Business Owner and Self-Employeed the Democrats and President Obama has taken the High Ground seen by We the People. And why I will never stand for Marysdude having his way of waiting for the Government to hand out checks, as an American Layman I will take what the Good Lord gives me and find a way to use it in My Community so all My Family, Friends, and Neighbors can have a better life.

So does that make me the enemy or could you all just stop shoting yourself in the foot long enough to see that it is not Who is Right or Wrong, but What is Right and Wrong for your Grandchildren who will have to live with what “We the People” do and/or not do to stop the Madness which has infected the Common Sense of Man.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 17, 2009 6:05 AM
Comment #275649

Yukon Jake-
If you think that after all that’s happened, that you can avoid some degree of new government interference, you’re wrong. People do not trust the financial system to police itself.

The burden to fund those positions will be on the hard working American taxpayer who creates something of value and breaks his brains and his back to make a living doing it.

Oh, poor Americans, forced to bear a burden willingly. The majority of the American people are willing to support this.

As for requirements for American employment, look at the next column over; somebody’s complaining about how the Stimulus bill requires all of the materials for the projects in bill to be made in America. But hey, I guess the French will get all those jobs.

You are obviously capable of rational thought, but do you not see that the blind loyalty you have lambasted Republicans for over Iraq and any other unpopular Bush policy, you are now exhibiting toward PO’s bill. You won’t even entertain the idea that this bill may create gigantic problems from which recovery will take decades and an overall transformation of consciousness across this country.

I can entertain the idea that it won’t all work perfectly. But I’m not going to admit to failures that haven’t happened yet, and I’m not going to make your assumptions for you. For years, you folks told us your policies could do no wrong, even as one incident after another tested your theories and found them wanting.

I think the government that governs best can govern least. But it has to govern best first, and be willing to intervene in emergencies. It can’t be so afraid of overgoverning that it doesn’t do what’s necessary.

As for the records management? Nothing indicates that the government will be doing that. It will only be helping to set up the infrastructure for our doctors and healthcare organizations to do that. This is one of many examples of where Republicans’ and conservatives’ fear of government makes them hold back from actually dealing with America’s problems.

We need something better than this back and forth BS. We need government that works, not government that fits a philosophy.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 17, 2009 8:57 AM
Comment #275656

Stephen
The bill barely changed and it was mainly just enough small stuff to reach 60. As far as getting their hindquarters broiled for opposing it, do you not understand how they were also being told by their constituents they better not vote for it?
Come on man, you are assuming the worst simply because they are of the other party.

I agree that “the way people prepare for deflationary spirals makes it worse,” but it is the way they prepare, not preparing it self, that is what makes it worse.
You don’t wait until everything starts to go to hell and start hording money, you start preparing way before. You spend a little and save more. We wouldn’t grow as large or fast, but it would be a steady, slow growth with more manageable rough times.

Yes, flat growth for a prolonged period of time will suck big time, but that may be the only way we as a country will change our ways and get back on track.

Government must intervene? Ok, first of all, I fully acknowledge that my belief on that is that of a very tiny minority, so I will agree with you on it. But shouldn’t we want and expect govt to intervene only in order to stimulate the economy? Why fill the bill with so much “non-stimulus” items?

There is no question that Obama has repeatedly said it is going to take awhile for things to play out, but again, it is his plan, not him, that people have a problem with.

“You are willing to have things taken from you by corporations who haven’t earned it. You have backed policies that make people like you and me more vulnerable to Wall Street and its economic imperatives. You rationalized these things as necessary, I rationalized other things.”

A corporation can only take things from me if I am willing to give it to them. I am only vulnerable to Wall Street if I allow myself to be. My choice Stephen. A choice I do not have with govt.
Either way though, what is the difference between a corporation stealing from me and govt stealing from me? Why do you condemn one but glorify the other?

“The difference is one of whether you blind yourself to your dependence on others, as you accuse me of being blind to my own abilities to act independently.”

I am dependent on others for frills, not survival. I am dependent on govt for perks, not survival. Sure my life isn’t as great as it could be during the good times, but its also not as bad as it could be during the bad.

“the priority of the Democratic party should be to solve those problems on its own.”

I think that is the heart of this hatred for people who believe as Rush does. It is easier to tag such beliefs to one person and label him or her as a partisan blowhard in order to dismiss the belief, than it is to actually deal with belief itself and work together.
You want to solve the problems on your own and you want everybody to do nothing but sit back and accept the solutions you provide.

“They failed to regulate Wall Street properly, and that became the current crisis.”

What did the Dems do to fix it? Oh, thats right, the majority agreed with the Dem Pres and supported such actions. One also has to wonder why the Dems did nothing to put regulations in place to stop the coming disaster they knew about. And why they keep claiming it was all the fault of de-regulation, when they know damn well that other factors attributed to what is happening.
You guys won the election Stephen, don’t you think its time to man up and stop trying to place all the blame on one party?

“They failed to do much of anything right in good time with the Iraq war, and that became the ongoing quagmire most people want out of now.”

Agreed.

“They did their best to give the advantage to the big corporations over the average worker and employee in America, and most Americans have seen their fortunes decline as a result. Now people want their prosperity back. Republicans resisted dealing with environmental challenges for the last generation, and now the results are rightfully scaring people.”

Both are nothing more than a difference of beliefs. Giving people the opportunity to earn their wealth and redistributing wealth. Man made global warming and natural global warming.

“Katrina was as much, if not more, a failure of management as it was a failure of getting the resources where they needed to be.”

And you have to understand that no matter which party is in control, govt is not our savior. Katrina was a failure because people expected govt resources to save them, rather than saving themselves. Katrina was a failure because the local govt was not prepared.

“Americans are sick of following this particular destiny of yours. They’re sick of being told no by a bunch of people who have even had the decency, in all their wisdom, to get what they say yes to right.”

Well, that does explain this move away from an Constitutional govt to a majority rules socialist type democracy. Why we are less unique and are becoming just another common European govt.
While a small majority voted for that this time, I still don’t think we have fully turned that corner yet. You guys push to hard and it may bite you in the rear. Only time will tell I guess.

“When and if we get this economy back up on its feet, we’re going to have to restructure it so it doesn’t need constant supervision, to where a culture of responsiblity develops. But people are going to have to put the errors of the past behind them, unless they seek to repeat them.”

Why do you believe govt is the only entity who is responsible enough and that can supervise without being supervised itself?
Look, govt supervision is needed, but not to “micromanage” as the left wants them to do. Putting too much faith in govt is worse than putting to little faith in it.

“As for whether the Republicans want to change? I have watched them defy and continue to defy the public’s wishes for the past eight years, and they don’t seem willing to acknowledge anything can put their beliefs to the test and find them wanting.”

As have the Democrats, Stephen.

“…and the Republicans might be able to return to being a more moderate, more accessible party.”

Possibly. The left became more moderate to get votes, afterall. My bet is that it won’t matter though. The left conned people into believing they were moderate and are now ruling as leftist, so even if the Reps grab the moderate tag after you all have pushed way left, they will still go back to where they were.

Posted by: kctim at February 17, 2009 10:29 AM
Comment #275657

kctim,

I can tell you only one thing…whether the government is bankrupt, or all the people are bankrupt, it means trouble for America. Your concern for the stimulus is noted by me. While apparently my concern for no stimulus is not so noted by you. America is down the tubes if we drop further into depression. It would weaken us so we’d have to quit fighting in the dishonorable Iraq stupidity, and aggressors, any where in the world, will be able to take advantage of that weakness. The only way to stave such weakness off is to pump up the economy. If the stimulus does not work, we won’t have to worry about our grandkids, because they won’t be American anyway. You seem to think that the rugged individualists can somehow reclaim America…bosh!

Posted by: Marysdude at February 17, 2009 10:39 AM
Comment #275659

Henry, what one views as what is right and wrong is at the heart of it all.
Do we stay true to our founding where people run the govt, or do we become a country where govt runs the people?

Posted by: kctim at February 17, 2009 10:45 AM
Comment #275661

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – After a frustrating holiday weekend that failed to yield the one vote needed to end California’s budget stalemate, the state is poised to begin layoff proceedings Tuesday for 20,000 government workers.

In addition to the layoffs, the state also plans to halt all remaining public works projects, potentially putting thousands of construction workers out of jobs.

Posted by: Rodney Brown at February 17, 2009 11:21 AM
Comment #275665

kctim-
I don’t have the patience to repeat myself on this: Nobody gets two unanimous votes in a row on the same bill, not with so much controversy, without organization behind the scenes. Look at the last link of my article. You had somebody essentially saying that this refusenik behavior WAS a strategy, one meant to distance Republicans from the issue, make Obama own it, and then get as critical about it as possible.

I’m not saying it doesn’t make sense from a political perspective. But there’s a difference between trying to be an active influence, and being a roadblock so your rival doesn’t acheive anything, good or not.

I agree saving is a good measure to deal with tough times, and has been since Joseph had his dream and told the Pharaoh. But it’s something you have to plan and achieve in advance. It’s also something you have to have the money for in addition to all you need to cover your needs. For the last thirty years, we’ve been shaping the environment so it’s harder and harder to end up with a surplus while leading a typical, disciplined middle-class existence.

But also, it’s no solution to deflationary pressures when they begin, because by definition, the unemployment, pay-cuts, and other drawdowns remove money that could be saved from the pockets of the consumer.

The trouble with letting the deflationary spiral get worse is that it’s more difficult to protect a country from economic shocks when they hit a weakened economy. You might think that it would be morally instructive, but I think it’s rather perverse to teach people by letting things slide into the toilet. Additionally, that assumes that hard times tend to teach good lessons. I would argue that a wrongheaded response to the last few recessions is part of what’s landed us in this trouble.

Why fill the bill with so much “non-stimulus” items?

This bill went through Congress without a single Earmark attached, first and foremost. Second, provide some examples. I think I’ve already blogged about this before, but it’s my opinion that many of these judgments about “non-stimulative” effects are problematic because they define stimulus with excessive narrowness. So lets talk about those items in particular, rather than paint with clumsy broad brushes.

Either way though, what is the difference between a corporation stealing from me and govt stealing from me? Why do you condemn one but glorify the other?

Wow. Like I would actually glorify the government stealing from me. I glorify neither. You seem to set this standard that any taxation by the government, even with Representation, represents theft. No functional government has ever existed that didn’t tax.

I want something for my tax dollars. I don’t want a bunch of lazy good-for-nothings just sitting in Washington. To me the real theft is when I pay for government I don’t get. When I get a prescription, I don’t want to have to wonder whether it’s going to kill me when it shouldn’t have. When I drink the water and breath the air, I don’t want it to be shortening my life anymore than a drink or a breath should. When I eat my food, I don’t want to be the next statistic for something like E. Coli or Salmonella, just because some idiot in a corporation decided to cut corners. When my future kids play with toys, I don’t want to have to wonder whether the paint contains lead. And when I cross a bridge to get to work, I don’t want to be wondering whether it’s going to do a Minnesota-Style Swan Dive.

What the hell am I paying my tax dollars for? So folks like you can have good feelings about not having any laws imposed on your, or on society in general?

I am dependent on others for frills, not survival. I am dependent on govt for perks, not survival. Sure my life isn’t as great as it could be during the good times, but its also not as bad as it could be during the bad.

Could the current population of this country survive on a system that required them to live as their ancestors did? Without the infrastructure that government maintains or standardizes, regulates and makes requirements of?

How many more people would die a year, if pollution standards were allowed to be what they were a hundred years ago? Or water standards?

My education over my lifetime has revealed to me a thousand ways in which I am obligated to be dependent on others. We’ve ignored our dependence on each other to our current peril. People forgot their responsiblities. The word NO was not heard or said enough in the right places.

Government isn’t necessary to restore all of this. Nor would I say its capable. But its absence is felt, when it allows those who are responsible for so much to do well by only themselves. My position isn’t that government is always needed, or always welcome, but that it is sometimes necessary. We shouldn’t be closed off to that.

You want to solve the problems on your own and you want everybody to do nothing but sit back and accept the solutions you provide.

You neglect the other part of that statement,. I would love their help, their influence. But they need to realize that as the majority party, we have the right to set the agenda. What they can do is play devil’s advocate. But to do that, they have to be serious about it. Their aim can’t be to further their party at our expense, to make reckless and irresponsible claims like hers. Talk about things that are actually in the bill, for starters.

They talk about provisions for mice that don’t exist, special provisions for Las Vegas high-speed rail projects that don’t exist. They talk about centralized rationed healthcare with government going through their information, when what’s really being discussed is a program to push the modernization of private networks to computerize health records, a measure that’s generally agreed to help reduce costly and deadly medical errors, and improve patient care.

I’m not going to say that Republicans are all lying, but it seems you have trusted sources who are lying to everybody, and folks are just passing this BS on uncritically.

Everybody agrees that children out of wedlock are a social and economic burden, but suddenly its wasteful to spend stimulus money on preventing that burden from occuring? Everybody agrees that improving efficiency and buying American vehicles owuld be good for our economy, that saving taxpayers money and reducing emissions would be good, but when does 650 million to upgrade the government fleet with hybrids constitute wasteful spending?

Our current economy and place in the world owes itself to high-energy physics. But according to Republicans, funding research that is a no-no.

The Republicans seem to be actively looking for reasons to beat down the bill, to refuse it, rather than for real problems. That’s why I don’t respect their opposition. They are not looking to be part of the solution. Why should we let them continue to involve us in being part of the problem?

Why do you believe govt is the only entity who is responsible enough and that can supervise without being supervised itself?

That’s sort of like asking “Why do you believe that raping your mother isn’t a heinous act of great moral repugnance?”. Do you think mere partisan sentiment drove me to oppose Bush out loud like I did starting in 2004? I believe government itself needs constant supervision, and I welcome those who are willing to offer constructive countertheories and counter proposals to ours. That’s not what’s being done. What’s being done is that the Republicans are trying to stir unwarranted hysteria up, saying or doing anything they can to raise the tensions so they can keep on impressing their base with their partisan fervor.

If they were serious, the Republicans would have conceded more, but also gotten more concessions. But what they’re doing right now is not about settling down and being a constructive minority party. It’s a continuation of an approach that they took with the last Congress, with 108 filibusters threats in the 110th, far beyond the obstruction attempted by any other minority party in this nation’s history. Their strategy is all about appearances, about making the Democratic Majority look like it can’t get anything done.

Well, that does explain this move away from an Constitutional govt to a majority rules socialist type democracy. Why we are less unique and are becoming just another common European govt.

What bugs me, when arguing this stuff with you, is that you seem to expect me to agree unconditionally with your idea of what’s constitutional. I’ll tell you this: those countries had distinct classes in a way we haven’t. Liberal, new-deal policies helped ease those tensions, create a society less stratified, more upwardly mobile. That’s why Socialism never caught on in this country. Liberalism prevented the kind of stratification that marks a society where its assumed that your high or low position is a result of your innate character or breeding. The Republicans have done a lot to bring that stratification back. If you look at history, such radical groups once played a major role. Then the New Deal came along, and suddenly their influence diminished. Why? Shared prosperity. Accountability for the upper classes. The Rule of Law imposed on corporations.

Since Reagan, Republicans, and Neoliberal Democrats relaxed these restrictions, we have seen the fortunes of the middle class decline.

Now people want the protections of government back. You call it socialist, I call it preventing socialism. Instead of having government impose its will thoroughly on the economy, we have it prevent misbehavior, and let the companies work out the rest for themselves.

Unfortunately, such misbehavior became the forbidden fruit for corporations and the upper-class. They came to believe that it was forbidden because socialists wanted to keep them down. The Reality is, these practices were forbidden because they brought harm to the public good, and to the corporations. Now we have had to relearn that lesson in the worst, most painful kind of way.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 17, 2009 1:34 PM
Comment #275666

>such misbehavior became the forbidden fruit for corporations and the upper-class. They came to believe that it was forbidden because socialists wanted to keep them down. The Reality is, these practices were forbidden because they brought harm to the public good.

Stephen,

I cut it a little, but this statement of yours is the crux of our national disgrace. It became okay to steal in order to stay socialism, which was a strawman to begin with. Thievery for no reason…

Posted by: Marysdude at February 17, 2009 1:49 PM
Comment #275667

>It will only be helping to set up the infrastructure for our doctors and healthcare organizations to do that. This is one of many examples of where Republicans’ and conservatives’ fear of government makes them hold back from actually dealing with America’s problems.
Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 17, 2009 08:57 AM

Stephen,

Actually those Republicans and conservatives of which you speak, may be listening more the Pharmaceutical and insurance lobbiests than to political or fiscal philosophy.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 17, 2009 1:56 PM
Comment #275669

Stephen
I read your links and as always, they were entertaining. But you are taking the words of Vitter and a partisan hack writer and applying it to the whole party in order to promote the worst. I didn’t do that with Obama and I won’t do it on this. So, until all these Republicans start coming out and saying they loved the bill but still voted against it, I am going to take it that they were voting on principle.
You don’t need to keep repeating yourself, its politics as usual.

We have been taught not to save and that our needs would be provided for us. That is what is rather perverse.
Of course govt should take measures to prevent it from getting worse and I absolutely don’t want people to suffer, but there is only so much that we should allow govt to do and it should be unintrusive and tightly critiqued and controlled.

Clumsy broad brush? It is you who is using a broad brush by accepting a possible outcome in the future as a stimulus for our current problem.
I will agree that the green bull may have some positive affects, but am skeptical because it will be rushed. Heck, I’ll even give you the cars for govt argument as long as our automakers are the exclusive holders of the contract. Kind of like the PK and the Chrysler bailout in the 70s or 80s. But the billions to education, healthcare, arts etc… do not address the problem we face today.

I don’t have to tell you how I feel about giving money to people who don’t pay taxes.

Of course govts tax, but ours was set up to tax in order to run govt, not lives. You know, I want something positive from my tax dollars also, but because govt is so concerned with my personal life, I do not get it. So what the hell am I paying my tax dollars for? So people like you can feel good about the hungry without having to actually help them yourselves?

“Could the current population of this country survive on a system that required them to live as their ancestors did?”

Of course not, these pansies couldn’t survive living as I did 30 years ago.

“Without the infrastructure that government maintains or standardizes, regulates and makes requirements of?”

Once again, as always was done with the great Rhinehold, you guys turn a belief in a limited govt into meaning no govt at all. We need standards and regulations for the protection of all, but it is taken way to far. Does a company really need to have 7 different govt employees ok one piece of equipment? No. Does a company really need to clean something 5 times even though it was just as clean the second time? No. Does a company really need 4 different people to move a wire from one point to another? No.
The complaint isn’t a call for no govt oversight, its a call for some common sense in order to end excessiveness in order to make money and make people feel good.

“People forgot their responsiblities”

And their most important responsibility is that of themselves so that they are not a burden onto others or their govt. I’m all for working with others and helping my neighbor, but under my terms, not the terms of others by force.

“You neglect the other part of that statement”

No Stephen. I just remember how people such as yourself complained about how your ideas were not being heard, how Republicans thought they had the right to set the agenda without your input and how you all hated to be left out. That is why you ran on “change,” you were going to change how everything was done. Now, you are doing the same thing the Republicans did to you and you are trying to make yourselves out to be victims, just as they did.

I know nothing of mice or rail, sorry. I do not listen to talk radio.
Centralized healthcare is a valid concern for those of us opposed to it and the “modernazation” program has security holes in it for those of us with open eyes.

Stimulus money for high energy physics will do nothing to fix our current problem. It is something that will probably aide us in the future, but it is not a pertinent piece of the current puzzle.

“Why should we let them continue to involve us in being part of the problem?”

Because, admit it or not, you are a part of the problem and should work with them instead of blaming them for everything. If somebody doesn’t listen to my input, fine, they can shoulder the outcome.

“What’s being done is that the Republicans are trying to stir unwarranted hysteria up, saying or doing anything they can to raise the tensions so they can keep on impressing their base with their partisan fervor”

Now why does that sound so familiar? Oh yeah, Iraq and the economy right before the election.

“What bugs me, when arguing this stuff with you, is that you seem to expect me to agree unconditionally with your idea of what’s constitutional”

Don’t let it bug you Stephen. If I expected you to agree with me about the Constitution, we wouldn’t have anything to discuss.
Socialism hasn’t really caught on in this country yet for one reason and one reason only: too many Americans still believe in their individual rights and freedoms for it to have changed yet.

We will just have to disagree on just how much people want government to intrude and run things. You may be right and its time for people such as myself to give it up.

On a side note: I know I am too forward and persistent with it and need to lay back a bit if constructive dialogue is the goal. Demeaning the way you believe of it has never been the reason for my words and I acknowledge I am a little to blunt sometimes. Bugging you has never been my goal on this.

Posted by: kctim at February 17, 2009 4:01 PM
Comment #275671

kctim-
Don’t take my word for it, just listen to Michael “Great Goose Egg” Steele.

Look, When somebody crowes about a mass transit project in a bill they voted against, the notion that this is principle kind of becomes more dubious.

I believe something needs to be done about the economy, and done quickly. Even if it’s not the best stuff this time around, getting those dollars out there quickly is a priority, because the situation will continue to develop, and what might work now, might not work with delay.

Obama didn’t run merely on changing the atmosphere of partisanship. He also ran on changing the economy, changing the infrastructure, changing our foreign policy, etc. The Republicans are flatly refusing to cooperate with him. So he puts the practical side of what he was sent to do ahead of the political side.

The Republicans have been arbitrary about their opposition, to the point even of misrpresenting what was in the bill (centralized healthcare was a canard, nothing to back it up in the bill).

What do you do against such unreasoning resistance, where nothing you do short of giving up on your real change will satisfy these people? I’m sick of being told I must be a doormat to the Republicans to be bipartisan, especially after we’ve won two elections on our philosophies, on our vision of change. If the Republicans want to make good policy arguments, I’m game. But they seem to be making mostly arguments about how liberalism is socialism, and both are the end of the world.

Socialism is politics when people have lost all patience with letting the economy run emergently. For my money, it’s kind of impractical. America doesn’t engage in it because we never had the distinctions of class that Europe had, the divide between nobility and commoners. Liberalism was able to resolve those conflicts without the need to become overbearing in government to do it.

I try to argue from facts often enough because when you argue from sentiments, the argument has a tendency to morph into something vague and overly generalized. That’s why I told you about those Republican talking points, and their falsity: to demonstrate at the least that these folks were operating in reckless disregard for the facts. I could just call them liars, but why say that when an example could better illustrate the truth?

That’s my problem with the whole rote argument of “no time to read the bill, no consultation, etc.” People are using that, instead of actually investigating the real details and substance of the legislation, where the more powerfully factual arguments lay, and where the most good can be done by principled opposition.

We have to recognize the danger of letting the rhetoric wag the dog of argumentation. We need to figure out what our real objections are, and then figure out our message. Do things the other way around, and that way lies insanity.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 17, 2009 6:10 PM
Comment #275672

Obama’s promise of ‘change’ had more to do with attitude than anything else. Once attitude changes from ‘business-as-usual’ to open, honest arbitration, discussion and compromise, that will fulfill the promise. He may be able to do it the first four years, and if so this country will be on the way to recovery. His first foray did not work because of obstructionists on the right…but, as Republicans see the light, that a cooperative spirit, and honest debate, can help their own party as well as America, I see a brighter future. I was becoming depressed with the obnoxiousness of House Republicans and the bare civility of Senate Republicans, but I have gained a little optimism since the signing in Denver.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 17, 2009 6:23 PM
Comment #275676

kctm
“Socialism hasn’t really caught on in this country …”

Lets see now, Did you come to that conclusion while picking up you Social Security check that was delivered by the socialist postal service or while driving on the socialist highway system or taking a ride on a socialist mass transit system,perhaps past the socialist fire station to the bank that is being propped up by socialist bailout funds …..? Because you do not aknowelege or appreciate the benefits from socialist institutions in America does not mean that they do not improve and enhance all our lives. How about the socialist sewer system, military,municiple power cpmpanies, the socialist dog catcher,socialist street lights.etc etc.?

Posted by: bills at February 17, 2009 10:01 PM
Comment #275677

kctm,
The short answer is both! For as Man and Woman will never agree on matters of the Heart so Individuals must realize that “We the People” cannot allow the Wolf to eat the Sheep by claiming that it is their right.

The problem IMHO is that both the Democratic and Republican Leadership in America is no longer debating what is right by “We the People” so that Our Children can have a Better World, but rather it is going to be “I the Corporation” or “We the Corporation” who will have control over what Citizens can do, have, and say.

Because if was truely represented the way that you put it than should the stimulus bill signed by President Obama not been objected on the principle that it does nothing to help start the American Consumer and Small Business Owner down the path to Economic, Energy, and Environmentally Independent?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 17, 2009 10:02 PM
Comment #275681

Seems St. Greenspan has come out in favor of nationalizing banks as the only alternative. Socialism marches on.
Next thing you know we will be asked to shell out our hard earned money to set up socialist soup kitchens and deprive people of the right to mal-nutrition and starvation. Will it never end.

Posted by: bills at February 18, 2009 4:31 AM
Comment #275682

>You guys are pissed off at Rush because he tells you what tens of millions of Americans believe?
Posted by: kctim at February 16, 2009 11:06 AM

kctim,

No…not what they believe, but rather what TO believe…and, worse, they do believe him.

We elect a President by a sound numbers and decisive electoral margins, and Rush tells tens of millions that it means NOTHING. He tells them that it will be good for America if the President of the United States FAILS! And, they believe him…how very sad for our country…

A train is going like sixty down the track, and the station master ahead communicates with the engineer that a herd of buffalo is crossing the track ahead, and he must do something…if he is a Democrat he may try braking ahead of time, or at least slowing enough that will allow reaction at the time he sees the problem…if he is a Republican he thinks them damned buffalo are sucking all my resources and should be put to death for interfering with my progress, full speed ahead and damn the results!

Posted by: Marysdude at February 18, 2009 8:28 AM
Comment #275683

Stephen
“strong principles that puts them (people) first and not the government.”

Again, that does not show that the Republicans acted against Democrats instead of against such an awful bill.

Ok, something has to be done. But why does rushing something that may or may not deal with the problem properly and which will more than likely make it worse down the road, now make good sense?
Most people are not arguing against a stimulus, they are arguing against the wasteful spending that does not deal with the problem today.

“But they seem to be making mostly arguments about how liberalism is socialism, and both are the end of the world”

Instead of dismissing that belief, you should be asking why people believe that way.
Hint: larger govt with more govt intrusion, means losing rights and freedoms and some of us believe losing them is the end of the world.

“Liberalism was able to resolve those conflicts without the need to become overbearing in government to do it”

If liberalsim was not overbearing and intrusive, it would be accepted. Rush would be a nobody and people like me would have nothing to complain about or fight against.

“That’s my problem with the whole rote argument of “no time to read the bill, no consultation, etc.” People are using that, instead of actually investigating the real details and substance of the legislation, where the more powerfully factual arguments lay, and where the most good can be done by principled opposition”

Thats funny. The left doesn’t seem to have a problem with using that excuse when it comes to defending their vote on Iraq. Neither do their supporters.

The most powerful factual argument is the cost and what we will get today, with that cost. I hate to say it, but it seems like you are now willing to accept BS as long as the end goal is to help the problem and calm your fear.

“We have to recognize the danger of letting the rhetoric wag the dog of argumentation”

I agree. But how do we do that when all opposition has been pre-determined to be nothing but rhetoric?

Posted by: kctim at February 18, 2009 9:50 AM
Comment #275684

BillS
“Lets see now, Did you come to that conclusion…”

Actually, Stephen first said it and gave a pretty decent explaination for why he believes liberalism actually hinders socialism from taking over. My response was that individual rights and freedoms are mainly responsible for keeping it at bay.

I do not draw SS.
Article 1, Section 8 answers your postal question.
I support the city services on my own choosing and could “opt-out” and move if I did not wish to. A choice that is not offered when dealing with the federal govt.
The military? Again, Article 1, Section 8.

Posted by: kctim at February 18, 2009 11:01 AM
Comment #275685

Henry
A govt which has grown too large and powerful has become the “wolf.”
A govt which has grown too large, intrusive and powerful, has become the “corporation” that you fear.

Dude
I place more faith in peoples common sense than that, so I do not believe Rush is telling people what to believe anymore than I believe the Kos or moveon is telling people what to believe.
What we deem important is what leads us to believe a certain way and to whom we agree with.

Rush wants the Obama to fail because he is a liberal and his “success” is based on liberal policy which means more govt.
You guys have to face the fact that there are alot of Americans who do not favor such a thing.

Interesting scenario with the buffalo. Let me tell you how alot of us see it:
The liberal Democrat conductor does nothing and waits for the “station master” to move the buffalo for him. If that doesn’t work, he expects the “station master” department to become larger so that it can deal with the buffalo for him.
The Republican will himself radio in to have them moved and will brake to give time. If that does not work, he will stop the train and attempt to move them himself.

I personally would just slow down and give them a chance to move and if that didn’t work, I would stop and do it myself. But if that still didn’t work, then yeah, I start back up and go. But heck man, you ever tasted buffalo? Good stuff.

Posted by: kctim at February 18, 2009 11:22 AM
Comment #275686

kctim, are you sure the repub wouldn’t just radio for more trains to get on track as it is all clear, demand the station master to get rid of the buffalo as they are holding up progress , proclaim to all he could do it better himself, bring in illegal aliens to do the work cheaper thereby putting Americans out of work, Speed up to get their first, cause a big collision with the buffalo and others on the same track, blame the station master for the problem, ask the station master to bail out his company, deny he had anything to do with the illegals and criticize the buffalo for being sponges on society ?

Posted by: j2t2 at February 18, 2009 11:37 AM
Comment #275687

kctim-
Some Republicans argued there was too much spending in the stimulus. Then they would turn around and argue that not enough of it was in stimulative spending areas, like infrastructure construction. Then they would turn around and have the majority of their delegation vote for proposals that were essentially all tax cuts.

Did I predetermine their argument to be just self-serving rhetoric? No. They have done this for themselves by arguing and taking actions with all different kinds of points whose premise conflict, and sometimes even mutually exclude each other.

The Democratic argument for strong intervention isn’t just some partisan effort. Alan Greenspan, a laissez faire economist who learned at the feet of Ayn Rand is arguing for bank nationalization.

As for Iraq… Well here’s the problem with being vague. Which vote? When? There were different circumstances for each vote. False conclusions are all that can be drawn when you ignore the facts. When we opposed Bush’s actions in Iraq, it was first to win the war, then to successfully take America out of what had come to be seen as a losing war by most Americans. I know there are all kinds of things you can accuse us of out of your resentfulness over the issues, but let me say this: we’re not thinking about this your way, and then deciding to do what you consider wrong. We got our own point of view on this, and we consider your arguments invalid from our point of view.

But our arguments have been consistent: get things done right, or get out of there. Don’t just sit around letting our soldiers get mauled in battle just so our country can save face and stave off a collapse that we weren’t putting supports in place by our presence to prevent.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 18, 2009 11:41 AM
Comment #275690

Stephen
Smart Republicans vote for tax-cuts or risk losing in the next election.
Arguing about what they see as wasteful spending but being ok with what they see as effective spending, is why I think things could have been worked out so that both parties would have signed up. Instead, we got the same partisan fight, the same blame game being played and the same excuses of “they won’t work with us,” from both sides.
Nothing has changed.

Re Iraq: I am hardly being vague. You know which vote I am talking about. The vote where the Dems voted for action and then started harping about how they did not have time to read it when things got tough.

“We got our own point of view on this, and we consider your arguments invalid from our point of view”

Of course you do, that is why almost all the Dems voted to pass the stimulus bill on what you believe to be principles, but refuse to acknowledge almost all the Republicans doing the same because of principles.
That is why 8 years of undermining Bush was ok, but one question or disagreement with the Obama is acting against the best interests of the country.
That is why rather than standing behind their vote on Iraq, the Dems distanced themselves from that yes vote and called Bush a murderer and religious tyrant making his oil buddies rich.

Its all about your view of how things must be or it is wrong. Something you spent the last 8 years railing against.
You won the election, Stephen. Don’t think about things my way or the Republicans way. Don’t worry about what either of us considers right or wrong. Push your mandate and do what you think is best for us. It is your view that matters, no one else’s. Its your show, run it how you want.
Continue the cycle.

Posted by: kctim at February 18, 2009 12:59 PM
Comment #275695

kctim,

I left unsaid the main point of my little buffalo analogy…the residual effects of the train wreck. It is unlikely the collision would harm only the buffalo and the cow-guard. But unrepentant rugged individualists rarely see the residual.

Republicans who cry tax-cut, tax-cut, tax-cut every time a blip in the economy occurs are the first to cry tax-cut once more when the train leaves the track…??? Sorry, but you AND they make little sense unless they and you want to move to the woods and shoot the bark off of trees. I don’t know who dropped the ball, but someone should have told you that the fur trade has about gone defunct, there are too many fences for good cowboying and we’ve already explored and developed the great American expanse.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 18, 2009 1:38 PM
Comment #275698

Dude
Is giving up ones individual rights and freedoms to prevent those “residual effects” be something people should be forced to do? Thats the problem with dependent liberals, they rarely see the reprecussions of their actions.

Tax-cuts work because we are grossly overtaxed and because it puts money back into the peoples pocket. Tax-cuts work because people are tired of paying for ridiculous big govt programs that take away the rights of all railroaders in order to try and prevent an accident that may happen and is very unlikely to ever happen.

Yes, the fur era is gone and we are now in the entitlement era of gimme gimme gimme. Good cowboying is all but impossible and the cowboy next door who sits on his ass all day and does nothing feels he is entitled to the same thing my hard work produces. I build my own fences while he waits for govt to take my money and build his fence for him.

You can mock me all you want, no big deal. But because of my individualism, I am not a burden on my country, my family, friends or neighbors and I am prepared for the hard times to come. I will be just fine. I wonder how many liberals can say that? With all the fear mongering they are doing daily, I wouldn’t bet many.

Posted by: kctim at February 18, 2009 2:51 PM
Comment #275700

kctim,

Please don’t confuse being liberal with being a pussy…we see a world where people and needs interlock, you see one where people don’t have needs. I would NEVER knowingly or intentionally mock you, but sometimes you are very exasperating…we have built a world where people must begin again to depend on each other, i.e., like the old barn raisings during our development years. You may go kicking and screaming into that notion, but in it you’ll be, because it’s the world we’ve built…we, meaning Republicans, Democrats and independents alike…all of us have had a hand in building the world we live in, not the one we want to live in.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 18, 2009 3:05 PM
Comment #275705

kctim said: “Thats the problem with dependent liberals, they rarely see the reprecussions of their actions.”

As if dependent conservatives were any better given the legacy of the last 8 years which can rightly be dubbed the era of unintended consequences, which we are all living through at this very moment.

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 18, 2009 4:08 PM
Comment #275706

Stephen D., I think you tend to fail to acknowledge the opportunity costs of this bill. And in so doing, demonstrate a partisan view. Obama’s directives attempted to balance the future cost of deficit spending today with future investment spending. That, to me, is the right approach, i.e., making the solution address the opportunity costs attached to the solution.

Yes, Republicans objected in near lockstep, and as a result, 100’s of millions of pork spending were eliminated, billions were realigned to have more positive and equally proportional impact in the 3 stool leg areas Obama set out, and the bill is better than the one which Democrats alone would have passed if Republicans didn’t exist.

I believe the majority of Republicans refused to compromise or vote for this bill for poor or bad reasons which place party unity above the well being of the nation and her people. But, when the shoe was on the other foot, I didn’t see Democrats acting any differently. And therein lies the deepest and most fundamental flaw with partisanship.

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 18, 2009 4:16 PM
Comment #275707

Dude
Saying someone is unprepared is not calling them a wuss and me being able to be just fine is because I have prepared, not because I have some false sense of toughness.

I don’t see a world where people have no needs, I see a country that was founded on the principles of being responsible for our own needs and given the rights and freedoms to fullfill those needs and the needs of our neighbors in the way we see best.

I am sure it is very exasperating for you guys and I can understand why it is. But it is not intentional.
Using your barn raising example and from having been a part of more than a few such things, I can assure you that no resources or labor was used against anyones will. Society worked together and the barn was raised without forced compliance or support.
What good is in building a barn that people resent? What good is in building a country which half the people resent?

But, Stephens post is about the evil Republicans so I will stop boring all with talk of rights and freedoms and fall in line.
Republicans are bad. They are wrong. Their views don’t matter.
The liberals won and we all should accept and embrace their way of life.

Posted by: kctim at February 18, 2009 4:36 PM
Comment #275708

DRR,

You are right, but I don’t know of that many major bills presented from 1994 thru 2006 that met with this type of split by the Democrats. There were a few that ended up with such a split, but they were not in a league with this one in importance. You also note that without Republican obstruction we might have ended up with a bill full of nonsense, but it certainly did not require a total rebellion by the entire party to accomplish that, and in fact most of the adjustments toward the conservative agenda were met before the first floor fight.

Obnoxious is a fitting term for the House Republicans reaction to the bill and still fits for the ranting they are still doing as they fall into lockstep with their ‘lamebrained’ quasi leader.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 18, 2009 4:39 PM
Comment #275709

PS:

A quasi leader who has never held elective or responsible office, I might add.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 18, 2009 4:41 PM
Comment #275710

PSS:

A lamebrained quasi leader who’s greatest responsibility so far in life has been to get the child-proof cap off his Oxy bottle.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 18, 2009 4:43 PM
Comment #275712

Dude and kctm

I want to thank both of you for service to our country. It is very much appreciated. Thank you.

Stephen:

Listen, if the stimulus works, Barry gets re-elected. If he flops, he’s a one termer. This is his plan, although I can’t figure out why a guy with an 80% approval rating would let an outfit with a 20% rating call the shots.

Really, I know the answer: He is WAYYYYY out of his league. 100 senators and 435 reps ate his shorts, I think last week.

Posted by: sicilian eagle at February 18, 2009 4:59 PM
Comment #275714

stephen

“But of course, all this hording and holding back takes money out of the market, and that, of course takes it out of the hands of even more businesses and individuals.”

are you kidding ? so the fact that some people take responsibility for thier own well being when tough times are looming is selfish ? thats how prudent people behave when times are getting tough. i guess it would be better if they continued to spend like there’s no tomorrow that way the gov’t can come racing in and save them. damn those selfish self reliant bastards. how dare they deny socialism its due.

Posted by: dbs at February 18, 2009 5:21 PM
Comment #275715

dbs-
I didn’t assign any value judgment on the witholding of the money. The thing is, yes it is smart for the individual who’s having trouble making ends meet to not go spending on things they can’t afford.

Put enough people in that position, though, and it becomes harmful to the economy. The Stimulus is about putting a good number of people back in the position where they can spend more money.

The way I would put it is that the regulatory structure of the past few decades has both reduced the amount of cash people have to devote to their needs and wants, and has also encouraged people to supplement their buying power with the use of credit.

Unfortunately, the Republicans and Democrats over the past few decades have messed that system up, let Wall Street get twisted up in its own games, essentially committing financial frauds so they could fatten their balance sheets.

So now not only are we seeing a downturn in a functional credit market, we’re seeing the apocalyptic destruction of that credit market, with nearly every big bank more or less unable to extend credit even to those capable and willing to pay it back.

Which means businesses and individuals who did nothing wrong find themselves all of a sudden unable to meet payroll, buy inventory, or do other things the way they’ve been doing.

I know you guys love the idea of the market weeding out the weak and stupid, but what this collapse is doing is weeding out people who essentially were running their businesses and their finances responsibility. This isn’t the revenge of the market on bad business, but a plague upon America’s ability to do business in a functional fashion.

SE-
From what I hear, the bill he wanted was mostly the bill he got. This above the objections of Nearly every Congressional Republican and even a few Democrats. This despite the fact that this bill represented a complete break with the policy of the last several administrations. This despite the fact that Obama is only three weeks into his first term.

As for why Obama would let them call the shots? It’s called legislation. It’s what we did before George W. Bush decided the executive branch could write its own laws.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 18, 2009 6:03 PM
Comment #275717

stephen

i could see spending money on infrastructure, after all these types of things need to be maintained, or other projects that were needed and at the same time put americans to work. the problem i have is with the pork, money for acorn, money for restoring the habitat of th salt marsh mouse etc. these things have nothing to do with stimulating the economy, and are just political payoffs. as time goes on and more of this bill is held up to the light it won’t be pretty.

the other problem is that it was rammed through before anyone could take a good hard look at it. if it was so urgent that it had to be forced through under cover of darkness then it was important enough for obama to drop what he was doing and sign it. thats not what happened though. instead he waited until after presidents day to make sure everyone was watching. sorry but it looks a bit fishy to me.

Posted by: dbs at February 18, 2009 6:57 PM
Comment #275718

Stephen

No. It’s a Pelosi-Reed boon-doggle, that’s what it is.

It’s 8 years of pent-up pork by the Democrats, that’s what it is.

As I said, I like Barry a lot..at least he climbed back from the ledge with his opposition to the Fair and Balanced Radio thing (really, all that talk is just a shot at Bill, Sean, Rush,Jeff what’s his name (I like that guy a lot).

Meanwhile, I am keeping track of corruption,though. Blogo. That Baltimore mayor, the Detroit mayor, The newest senator from Illinois,Elliot the Perv from NY…that’s a pretty immpressive list I got going there…

Posted by: sicilianeagle at February 18, 2009 6:58 PM
Comment #275723

I live in a town of less than thirty thousand. There have been about fifty small businesses liquidate just here in this little burg. Multiply that by how many towns this size to get a picture of how bad things are going to be if we don’t have discretionary dollars out there pretty soon. Infrastructure is very important, but that can’t be all there is to it or the small businesses, that are still open today, won’t be here tomorrow.

Tax cuts, tax cuts, tax cuts…phooey!

Posted by: Marysdude at February 18, 2009 7:13 PM
Comment #275729

SicEagle, you must remember that ANY spending by ANY government is going to be PORK SPENDING for someone. In other words, all government spending is PORK spending for someone.

The operational definition of pork spending is whether or not the spending reflects the objectives of the title of the legislative Bill.

The title of the bill in question is the Economic Recover AND Reinvestment Act. Therefore, any spending which is not on its face going to help the economy recover or, offset infrastructural spending that would be required in the future anyway, or invest in new sector and industry jobs creation going forward, can be deemed pork by the operational definition put forth.

To be sure, this bill contains Pork spending. But, it is also reported that by this operational definition, the amount of pork in this bill is less than 1% of the cost of the bill. That is wasteful, as it amounts something less than 7.87 billion dollars in Pork.

If however, the other 99% achieves its objectives, the American economy, workers, and businesses will be helped by this bill. And help for the economy, workers, and businesses is vastly preferable to no help at all.

One can make the argument that it is better to let this economy and nation fail at this time, as a point of fairness to those Americans in the future who would have to shoulder the cost of a 1% pork ridden economic recovery and reinvestment action.

But, it’s a flawed argument a priori. Since, a failed economy in the short term will be vastly more costly to future Americans in quality of life, and cost of living than the addition of 7.87 billion added to their taxes divided by the number of tax payers divided by the number of years tax payer revenues are collected to pay off that debt and its attending interest costs (a relative pittance to the cost of rebuilding the nation and economy from the ashes of a protracted depression.)

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 18, 2009 9:24 PM
Comment #275730

Marysdude, you miss the fundamental mark. Republicans argue for tax cuts in the desperate hope of bargaining tax cuts for their major and wealthiest contributors, which means, across the board tax cuts. Even if Democrats were to go for a whole economic recovery and reinvestment act based on tax cuts alone, such tax cuts would be targeted to Democrats contributors and not across the board.

Which points out the futility and illogical nature of the Republican argument for tax cuts. Aside from the obvious, that business is not suffering from a lack of tax cuts, they are suffering from a lack of customer orders; which tax cuts aimed at business and the wealthy capital investment crowd would not address and impact only in the smallest proportion to need.

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 18, 2009 9:29 PM
Comment #275735

DRR,

I’m pretty sure the Republicans didn’t even WANT tax-cuts. If some real tax-cuts had been offered they’d have found a way to turn them down. What they really wanted was to drive the train off the rails. They chose tax-cuts as the derailer. The effort is to obstruct, obstruct, obstruct, until everyone wears out.

It may not work though…many Republican governors and some congressmen are beginning to warm up to the idea of stimulus coming to their state. If they get on board the stimulus train, it will make the righteous blow-hards who voted against it look like the petty criminals they truly are.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 18, 2009 10:45 PM
Comment #275736

dbs-
There’s a term in Liberal Blogospheric circles: zombie lies. You shoot them down, they get back up. There’s no money or mention in the stimulus bill for either the mouse or for ACORN. They aren’t even mentioned.

Should I not be impatient with people critiquing the bill on the grounds of provisions that don’t exist? And if this is a regular occurence, can I say something’s fishy?

I hate having discussions based on vague talking points and perjorative language. They never seem to go anywhere. One side gives their position, the other side gives theres, and its got all the drama of a school play, which each side’s pundits stepping forward to give their lines to the audience.

When we get the facts straight, then we can really talk, and move in some direction. You can, for example, talking about the millions for contraception as pork, but I could come back with statistic about the economic benefits of singles and couples practicing birth control of some kind, and the economic detriments of unwanted or unexpected pregnancies, and that would put the discussion on a different footing. You could say, train people in abstinence, and I could refer to studies indicating such approaches don’t work.

But the discussion moves. And that’s what I prefer.

So far, what I see coming from the right are doubts and dark clouds. I don’t see them bringing out a policy, dissecting it, talking about how those approaches have worked in the past, and so on and so forth. That would be refreshing.

Instead, what I see are the same old talking points, not merely same old within this argument, but same old in terms of recent politics. When people don’t move their arguments to suit the situation, when nothing about the changes in circumstances affect plans, the basis of those ideas ceases to seem sound. Can tax cuts truly ALWAYS be a good idea? Can spending or growing government always be bad?

I came out of my high school career greatly interested in the American Transcendentalists, like Thoureau and Emerson, so I’m always concerned when things are foolishly consistent.

An unquestionable argument is none at all. When Republicans start dealing with the world with more pragmatism, more eye for detail in a policy sense, not just a political sense, I’ll feel better.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 18, 2009 10:59 PM
Comment #275737

I think something we are still missing is can-do spirit.

In WWII FDR had America collect pots and pans to help melt them down to make warships. In reality, they had no effect on iron and steel supplies.

Buying bonds, rationing, and of course enlistment all had the effect of producing an esprit de corps that gets to the core of the emotional problem during a contraction. It diverts a focus on the negative, to the job at hand.

As much as massive spending is needed, a campaign of positivety is needed.

Posted by: gergle at February 18, 2009 11:20 PM
Comment #275738

kctm,
Why I will agree that in the 70’s Government was the Wolf, seeing our Democratic and Republican Civil, Political, and Religious Leaders struggle today and crying that a Corporation is to big to fail. I have to wonder if the Government you hand to your children will not be considered a Sheep.

And why I do not fear the Corporstion, I do believe like the Government of the 70’s it to has become a Beast who would rather enslave its citizens in the name of profits and power while turning away from Its True Master.

Yes, you may say that you support the Ideology of the Founding Fathers of America, but can you explain why meither the Liberal or Conservative Movement in America will embrass the American Consumer, Small Business Owner, and Taxpayer using the Political and Societal Tools of Man to become Self-Suficient from the Corporation and Government.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 19, 2009 1:04 AM
Comment #275741

Marysdude said: “I’m pretty sure the Republicans didn’t even WANT tax-cuts.”

While your statement fits nicely into your theory of derailing any solutions, history demonstrates that one of the few fiscal policies they have both spoken and acted consistently on is tax cuts.

There is no reason to believe Republicans have changed their position on tax cuts ending the need for taxes altogether, which is the implication of their years of rhetoric on the issue. I have even heard a couple of Republican dupes call in on C-Span’s Wa. Journal and advocate for cutting taxes as the way to end the federal government and permit the states to govern in an unfettered fashion. (Shades of the Confederacy, to which Republicans appeal earnestly).

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 19, 2009 1:37 AM
Comment #275742

kctim said: “I see a country that was founded on the principles of being responsible for our own needs and given the rights and freedoms to fullfill those needs and the needs of our neighbors in the way we see best.”

Which is contrary to the founding fathers understanding of a union of states, as opposed to individual nations, contrary to the concept of a national military as opposed to local militias to defend local turf, contrary to the entire arrangement of a Congress to which was added the burden of steering the nation, as well as local constituencies and local needs.

What an absolutely myopic comment I quote above. So, one sided, so extremist in its blinders to the whole of the Constitution and the ideals of the Declaration of Independence, which use as a cornerstone of their constructs, that we are vastly superior in our abilities as a nation of united people depending on each other for mutual respect for each other and the law, for strength, wisdom, and future direction, than we could ever hope to be as geographic collection of individuals fending for ourselves first and foremost above all other considerations.

Your comment reflects a Mountain Man philosophy which is not at all the foundation of our nation’s founding documents or government construct.

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 19, 2009 1:49 AM
Comment #275744
Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, whose bank received $25 billion in bailout funds from the government, refused to tell CNBC anchor Melissa Francis how the bank is performing this quarter.

“Can you tell me how this quarter is doing for JPMorgan?” Francis asked.

Dimon’s brief response: “I can’t.”

Last October, Dimon was a little more explicit on an earnings conference call:

“I would be shocked if we make lots of money one of these quarters, anyway.” Dimon says they’re watching investment-banking clients carefully.

Asked for his thoughts about Obama’s housing plan, Dimon praised the plan, saying that it was “really elegantly done and really well-designed,” adding that JPMorganChase alone will modify over 600,000 loans.

But he took a tough attitude towards home owners behind on their payments:

“I don’t think just because someone’s underwater they say I don’t have to stay there. But they’re supposed to pay the mortgage, and we should teach the American people, you’re supposed to meet your obligations, not run from them. Because you have a mortgage doesn’t mean you should run away as it goes down.”

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/02/19/bailed-out-chase-ceo-dimo_n_168121.html

This good banker, who’s hand is out for help, and who can’t seem to take responsibility for his own actions, wants to teach Americans about financial responsibility…go figure.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 19, 2009 6:34 AM
Comment #275745

DRR,

Of course you are right about most Republicans wanting tax-cuts…but one hundred percent of Republican House members and all but about six percent of Republican Senators? I really do wonder what they’d have done if Democrats had caved all the way and offered a stimulus of tax-cuts, i.e., inheritance, capital gains, corporate and those individuals taking in over a million dollars per year…hmmm…I think it’s okay to believe they’d have found a way to be against it.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 19, 2009 6:42 AM
Comment #275747

David,
Why you are technically right about the Mountain Man, would you care to tell the Backwoods Men of America like Daniel Boone that Americas’ Founding Fathers of America did not have them in mind when establishing the Founding Documents.

For do I not have the right to live on top of the mountain running wild provided that when I come down to the Valley among others I act like a Gentleman.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 19, 2009 7:40 AM
Comment #275750

Henry,

I think, more to the point, in todays world we can’t all live the life of the rugged individual. There ain’t enough room on the mountain for all of us, and modernization, as distasteful as it might be, has formed modern man in a different mold. Those who advocate a total separation from society (socialism), are peeing into the wind (it mostly comes back to visit them)…eeyewww!

kctim,

I understand the word responsibility, and I understand your desire for all mankind to subscribe to the political philosophies that propose responsibility. I also understand that not all people are, and barring shooting them in the streets or watching them starve and rot in public (it would require tax payer monies to buy the bullets and/or bury them), I don’t know how else to handle it other than provide at least some essentials.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 19, 2009 8:39 AM
Comment #275751

Henry, is there a difference between the Backwoods Folk you speak of, and the Confederacy in philosophy regarding a federal government? I think you would have to poll Backwoods Folk in Boone’s time to find out, and a sweeping generalization today would do them individually much offense.

If I recall, Daniel Boone was a politician in the federal government for awhile, and very likely opposed to slavery. Maybe I am mistaking Boone for Davy Crockett.

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 19, 2009 9:00 AM
Comment #275753

david

“SicEagle, you must remember that ANY spending by ANY government is going to be PORK SPENDING for someone. In other words, all government spending is PORK spending for someone.”

not true david. one example would be excise tax on gasoline and diesel. the purpose of this as i’m sure you’re aware is to maintain the roads and bridges we drive on. this would not be pork as the taxes we pay are directly linked to our use of the roadways. to say all gov’t spending is pork is patently untrue.

giving money to a group such as acorn in stimulus bill, now thats pork.

Posted by: dbs at February 19, 2009 9:26 AM
Comment #275757

stephen

“There’s a term in Liberal Blogospheric circles: zombie lies. You shoot them down, they get back up. There’s no money or mention in the stimulus bill for either the mouse or for ACORN. They aren’t even mentioned.”

somes times you have to look a little deeper. just because niether may be mentioned specificaly, my understanding is that there are mechanisms within the the bill which will provide money for both of these organization.

here is repost of a link i posted on another thread where congressman mc clintock refers to the mouse pork. do you think he’s making this up ? i seriously doubt it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y8l6tn9cCLU&eurl=http://www.tommcclintock.com/

it’s funny you’re quick to dismiss my argument as zombie lies, but fail to adress the fact that no one was allowed the time to thoroughly examine this bill before it was voted on, and after that obama took his time signing it. is that also a zombie lie.

Posted by: dbs at February 19, 2009 9:45 AM
Comment #275758

Henry
Sheep are watched over. Our govt was designed to be watched over by us. It has morphed into being what watches over all. It will be worse for our children and grandchildren.

David
Once again you read into things until they say what you want them to say so that they will fit your beliefs. Freedom not how you see it equals anarchy.
Nowhere have I said or promoted that we were not a union of states which have to work together or that we as a people did not need to work together.
It is very possible for us to respect each others rights and still work together for the betterment of our society without massive govt oversight.
I know rights mean nothing if we are willing to take them away from one person in order to please another.

“Your comment reflects a Mountain Man philosophy which is not at all the foundation of our nation’s founding documents or government construct”

And your comments often reflect the philosophy of Marx. I wonder which of the two our founding fathers would prefer?

Posted by: kctim at February 19, 2009 10:01 AM
Comment #275759

stephen

sorry i didn’t adress this in the last response.

“When we get the facts straight, then we can really talk, and move in some direction. You can, for example, talking about the millions for contraception as pork, but I could come back with statistic about the economic benefits of singles and couples practicing birth control of some kind, and the economic detriments of unwanted or unexpected pregnancies, and that would put the discussion on a different footing. You could say, train people in abstinence, and I could refer to studies indicating such approaches don’t work.”

while i understand this is merely a hypothetical debate meant to make your point, i find it interesting that you chose this topic, and and my position with you shooting down my hypothetical talking points. i might add that you don’t even know my position on birth control. this comment is very interesting indeed.

Posted by: dbs at February 19, 2009 10:04 AM
Comment #275760

Sic Eagle said: “not true david. one example would be excise tax on gasoline and diesel. the purpose of this as i’m sure you’re aware is to maintain the roads and bridges we drive on.”

You are wrong. The enviromentalist citizen in New York or San Francisco who doesn’t even own a car and relies upon public transit may very well deem the gasoline and diesel excise tax spending on promoting individual transportation strategies and costs a very PORK BARREL SPENDING project of Congress.

You didn’t think far enough outside the box before offering that erroneous example, apparently. Like I said, to someone ANY Congressional spending is PORK spending. There is no case you can make to disprove that universal statement, as common sense examples are readily available for any Congressional spending.

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 19, 2009 10:06 AM
Comment #275761

Marysdude said: “Of course you are right about most Republicans wanting tax-cuts”

And you are right to use the word ‘most’ in your comment above. Schwarzeneggar apparently wants to see tax increases to break the log jam which is going to kill his governorship.

Is it just a coincidence that Ca.’s 8th largest economy in the world is plagued by a divided political party government which can’t seem to get past partisan concerns to solve the devastating issues facing it and its people? Kinda makes me think other nations with 3 or more parties fare far better than our 2 party system is in the U.S. today.

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 19, 2009 10:13 AM
Comment #275762

kctim said: “Nowhere have I said or promoted that we were not a union of states which have to work together or that we as a people did not need to work together.”

Yes, you did. Here is the quote: “I see a country that was founded on the principles of being responsible for our own needs and given the rights and freedoms to fullfill those needs and the needs of our neighbors in the way we see best.”

You speak of fulfilling those needs at the individual level, and if that is applied to the society as a whole, it is the very definition of anarchy as we all become our own police, judge, and jury in our interactions with each other. You go on to assert that individuals have the right and freedom fulfill the needs of one’s neighbors, which depending on what one views as the neighbor’s needs, can support slavery, as plantation owners determined that they were very adequately seeing to the needs of their ‘darkies’.

I am working from your own words and general statement of philosophy, and philosophy put into action becomes a system, and what you describe in your quoted comment above taken at face value without qualification is a description of anarchy.

I accept your later comment’s veracity that you do not support anarchy. But, if that is true, you must amend or qualify the comment I quoted, because as it stands, it reads as an anarchists campaign slogan.

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 19, 2009 10:24 AM
Comment #275763

kctim said: “And your comments often reflect the philosophy of Marx.”

Care to back that assertion up with a contextualized quote, as I did in my comments to you? Perhaps that would prove to be a wasted effort, eh?

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 19, 2009 10:27 AM
Comment #275767

KCTim:

What happens to those people no one chooses to help? What about them? They are there, you know.

Posted by: womanmarine at February 19, 2009 11:30 AM
Comment #275768

The mouse’s money is just plain untrue.

How did this one get going? Yesterday a House Republican leadership staffer circulated a background email, which I obtained, charging that GOP staffers had been told by an unnamed Federal agency that if it got money from the stim package, it would spend “thirty million dollars for wetland restoration in the San Francisco Bay Area — including work to protect the Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse.”

So, essentially, we have an unnamed source at an unnamed agency saying that they would spend the money they were getting a certain way.

It’s most definitely not in the bill. As for Wetlands Restoration? Well, that would certainly employ people, pay for supplies which would pay money into American’s pockets. Wetlands also serve to clean toxins out of the environment, and as a buffer for storm surges and flooding.

But somehow, it all becomes thirty million just for the mouse, at Pelosi’s request. So why is a bill being criticized for something that’s not written into it, in a way that misleads people as to the nature of the spending?

My most charitable interpretation of this is that most people are ignorant of the facts of this example, and are making their usual mistake of taking the Republican Pundit’s word for things. And to extend the charity, maybe some of the people who picked up on it just thought it was the perfect little thing to bludgeon the Democrats with: Wasteful pork spending on little mice. But the mouse is a footnote to what the agency was speaking of, even if we take the staffer’s e-mail at face value. The mouse was emphasized to make it seem like more of a boondoggle, and the looseness and vagueness of the link de-emphasized so that opponents couldn’t immediately respond by saying that this was a problem with implementation of the bill at worst, not its writing.

But there’s no two ways about it: the claim is a myth, a canard, and because of its dishonest presentation, a lie.

As for ACORN? Here’s the story on that. Essentially, Rep. Boehner floated this talking point on 4.1 billion dollars being added to an already appropriated 3.9 billion dollars in funds designed to buy up and refurbish foreclosed homes in areas where rates of foreclosure were particularly high. The purpose of this bill would be to prevent blight, and keep these houses marketable, which would help prevent further drops in property values which would add to economic woes in those parts of cities and suburbs.

The ironic part?

However, ACORN disputes that it pushed for the change. It also says it has not subcontracted with cities or towns to receive funds to buy foreclosed properties, nor does it intend to.

“We have not received neighborhood stabilization funds, have no plans to apply for such funds, and didn’t weigh in on the pending rule changes,” ACORN Chief Organizer Bertha Lewis said.

4.1 billion dollars to ACORN? Not at all, not even in part!

What do we treat as fact here? Just because John Boehner says ACORN’s getting money from this, suddenly everybody on the Right is saying that same damn thing. And the same thing with the mouse. And everybody’s dead wrong.

But with just a little googling, I can knock both claims flat. One deals with a use of the money that was never confirmed as fact, much less written into the stimulus bill. One deals with a section of the bill that actually has real stimulative effect (preventing further deflation of home values in foreclosure-heavy areas), but has been slapped down as being pork to an organization that has no interest in even participating in the program.

That the last program in question actually sounds useful and stimulative makes the irony all the more bitter, and the use of it as an argument against the bill highly inappropriate, as well as fundamentally dishonest.

Three or four years ago, Mona Charen and other folks were claiming that Democrats got 92% of their funds from those giving more than a million dollars, and Republicans got 62% of their money from those giving $200 or less. What did a little bit of research uncover?

She got her information from Ronald Brownstein. I looked at the information, and found some rather interesting distinctions were glossed over. As in Brackets. Following it all the way back to an Opensecrets.org contribution page, I discovered that the percentages in question did not tell the reader what proportion of the overall money amounts that the percentages given came from. They represented the share of the bracket in question. Which is to say that Democrats got 92% of the contributions from those who gave more than a million. But those totaled only 22 or 23 people. Republicans didn’t get sixty something percent of all their money from small donors. They got that share of the small donors bracket, with the Democrats getting the rest. Both parties were about equal, overall, in the money they raised from $10,000 dollar a plate dinners and the like.

The Republican pundits made their party seem like ultra populists, and the other party look like a bunch of rich snobs. I don’t doubt Mona Charen and her friends got many of the GOP’s supporters to gloat about their party’s strength.

But everything they would say or believe would either be based on a gross negligence of the facts, or a malicious disregard of them.

That was not the first time, and it sure as hell wasn’t the last time I would investigate a claim like that and find its utter debunking.

Not once but twice here, I’ve done the same. I was prepared to argue from a logical extension of the facts as I know them, but a little research gave me the ability to argue from better substance. I employed a similar tactic here. Instead of getting into dreary, never-ending rounds of philosophical argument and talking point trades, I did some research and found what the facts were. That decided what arguments I would and would not make. That decided what ground I would stand on.

Rather than look for the rhetorical hammer with which I could beat my opponents, I looked for the factual one, and used my rhetoric in service of the facts. If you look at what blogs I frequent, you’ll find that my focus is on blogs that offer a lot of substantive information, primary sourcing, and other factual supports. Sure, it often has a liberal slant. But it’s less about the tiring recapitulation of rhetorical talking points, and more about making arguments on facts rather than sentiment, pragmatic issues rather than philosophical.

I think that’s a much more powerful way to argue politics, because you’re not dealing with things where people can freely interpret any way they’d like. The facts bind the feet of arguments that don’t follow the path of truth, forcing rationalizations that diminish their force.

Now anytime somebody brings up the salt marsh mouse, I can politely remind them of the circumstances. And if they bring up ACORN? They’ll wish they hadn’t.

The real question here, at the end of the day, is why the Republicans are relying on these “more fluff than stuff” kinds of arguments. My feeling is that the Republicans got used to arguing for the sake of rhetorical convenience, and allowed themselves to do so because they believed it was more important to argue for the truth and principle of their politics, than for that of their facts. They reasoned that if they got power, they would end up changing things for the better. It worked as long as people didn’t have the ability I demonstrated: to factcheck these half-truths and mistruths almost instantly.

The Republicans must get used to an era where everybody does factchecks, and where the scrutiny is pervasive. So must their supporters.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 19, 2009 11:34 AM
Comment #275770

dbs it seems the righties in Congress have a way of exaggerating and then spreading the story around as fact.

http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_11696283

Several have even issued press releases within their home states bragging about what the stimulus bill will do for the state even as they voted against it.

http://thinkprogress.org/2009/02/18/bond-touts-stimulus/

This pretty much speaks for itself IMHO and shows what type of integrity Senator Bond has.

Posted by: j2t2 at February 19, 2009 11:38 AM
Comment #275771

David
Still trying to get it to say what you want it to say.
I “speak of” how it is our individual responsibility to fulfill our needs at the individual level and that we were given the rights and freedoms to meet that responsibility. When applied to society as a whole, the people are not controlled by government and are less dependent on government, and that enables government to concentrate on running the country, not individual lives.
That is not saying we need to live separate. That is not a call for lawlessness. That is not a cry for anarchy.

It is an anarchists campaign slogan only to those who fear such individual freedom and responsibility.

Do you deny we are responsible for fulfilling our individual needs? Or do you believe it is government who is responsible to fulfill our individual needs for us?

Posted by: kctim at February 19, 2009 11:39 AM
Comment #275773

stephen

“So why is a bill being criticized for something that’s not written into it, in a way that misleads people as to the nature of the spending?”

maybe if the bill had been allowed to see the light of day before being signed in haste there would be less speculation and more hard evidence as to what it truely says. so much for the promise of transparent gov’t.

“we have an unnamed source at an unnamed agency saying that they would spend the money they were getting a certain way.”

this is interesting as i recall the left touting unnamed sources as reliable when they critisized bush, republican policy, or acusation of wrong doing of the same. many times people choose to be annymous because of fear of reprisal, or other reasons. maybe the source is reliable, and maybe it isn’t, only time will tell. if i’m wrong when this all plays out i will admit it, but i will expect the same from you.

Posted by: dbs at February 19, 2009 11:57 AM
Comment #275774

Remer writes; “The enviromentalist citizen in New York or San Francisco who doesn’t even own a car and relies upon public transit may very well deem the gasoline and diesel excise tax spending on promoting individual transportation strategies and costs a very PORK BARREL SPENDING project of Congress.”

Partly true and partly false. It may be true that the environmentalist might consider the collection of the tax is wrong as it is spend on projects they deem inappropriate.

However, it is hardly “pork barrel” spending as a tax to pay for it goes along with the spending. Since the tax is collected from those who receive the benefit I view this as a responsible government action.

Posted by: Jim M at February 19, 2009 12:01 PM
Comment #275779

WomanMarine
“What happens to those people no one chooses to help? What about them? They are there, you know”

First, one persons needs do not trump another persons rights or freedoms.

I know we have become a country with a very weak sense of community spirit and love of country, but I still believe the vast majority of people deserving help would get enough help from others in order to survive through Churches, special groups and individual caring etc…

I really don’t care about those undeserving, which I believe would make up almost all of those who no one helped. Those who “say” they care, can worry about them. Surely all 62 million of them would help, wouldn’t they?

Posted by: kctim at February 19, 2009 12:27 PM
Comment #275782

For those who ‘cry wolf’ about not having enough time to peruse the stimulus bill…there are aides in both the House and the Senate, being paid beaucoup bucks, just to read and condense such things. If Senator ‘X’ doesn’t know what’s in the bill, it is Senator ‘X’s own fault…he should have put his people to work on something besides listening to the latest lobbyist’s pitch.

Posted by: Marysdude at February 19, 2009 12:46 PM
Comment #275786

j2t2, stephen

http://www.factcheck.org/politics/stimulus_bill_bravado.html

seems you’re right that this issue may be overhyped. seems that there was a provision in the senate bill, but not the house bill. it doesn’t change my opinion of the spending bill as a whole, but if i was wrong i should be willing to accept that.

Posted by: dbs at February 19, 2009 1:44 PM
Comment #275787

dbs-

maybe if the bill had been allowed to see the light of day before being signed in haste there would be less speculation and more hard evidence as to what it truely says. so much for the promise of transparent gov’t.

The bill was out there for quite a little while. They didn’t need to guess or speculate on the contents. You can’t tell me that between them they couldn’t get a decent group of folks together to collectively look at and analyze them. If it was their prerogative, they could have taken a substantive approach to this debate.

this is interesting as i recall the left touting unnamed sources as reliable when they critisized bush, republican policy, or acusation of wrong doing of the same. many times people choose to be annymous because of fear of reprisal, or other reasons. maybe the source is reliable, and maybe it isn’t, only time will tell. if i’m wrong when this all plays out i will admit it, but i will expect the same from you.

Before I move on to the substantive portion of the argument, does this mean you’ll concede all those arguments, in light of the claim you’re attempting right now? Hey, hey, just thought I’d ask. Just keep in mind that you can’t just go changing your positions willy-nilly.

Look, it’s misleading, even if the source is correct. First, the 30 million would never be spent on just the mouse, but on the wetlands as a whole. But that’s not the way the Republicans portrayed it. They said “Look, they’re spending it on a mouse!”. Second, they tried to portray this as Nancy Pelosi’s deal, when she had no connection whatsoever.

Lastly, the essential message was “this is in the Stimulus Bill.”, which was utterly false, even if the staffer’s claim has merit.

We don’t have to wait for time to tell here.

stephen

i could see spending money on infrastructure, after all these types of things need to be maintained, or other projects that were needed and at the same time put americans to work. the problem i have is with the pork, money for acorn, money for restoring the habitat of th salt marsh mouse etc. these things have nothing to do with stimulating the economy, and are just political payoffs. as time goes on and more of this bill is held up to the light it won’t be pretty.

Whatever rationalizations you might employ, you were talking about these particular “zombie lies” when you were arguing against the contents of the bill. But now you’re saying that the speed of the bill’s passage is to blame, forcing them to speculate. Except they should know, given the distribution of that e-mail, the character of the mouse claim. Additionally, the claim by Boehner about ACORN was germane to a debate about a specific provision. Either he was talking out of his hat, or he knew the content of the bill, and was just spinning out political junk in order to badmouth it.

Earlier press releases feature specific provisions. How long was this thing in negotiation? Quite a few weeks. How long was there between the first vote and the last? About two weeks.

Stop making excuses for these people. There’s no reason for their ignorance. Nor for anybody else’s.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 19, 2009 1:54 PM
Comment #275795

Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla. said, when voting against the stimulus, “Never have so few spent so much so quickly to do so little.” Three of his contentions are correct. The $787 billion price tag is probably at least two-thirds too low: Add the cost of borrowing to finance it, and allow for the certainty that many “temporary” programs will become permanent, and the price soars far above $2 trillion.

Cole’s fourth contention, however, is wrong. The stimulus, which the Congressional Budget Office says will, over the next 10 years, reduce GDP by crowding out private investment, already is doing a lot by fostering cynicism in the service of opportunism.

Posted by: Jim M at February 19, 2009 3:38 PM
Comment #275796

Jim M-
This is what the CBO says:

The negative effect of crowding out could be offset somewhat by a positive long-term effect on the economy of some provsions—such as funding for infrastructure spending, education programs, and investment incentives, which might increase economic output in the long run. CBO estimated that such provisions account for roughly one-quarter of the legislation’s budgetary cost. Including the effects of both crowding out of private investment (which would reduce output in the long run) and possibly productive government investment (which could increase output), CBO estimates that by 2019 the Senate legislation would reduce GDP by 0.1 percent to 0.3 percent on net.

Wow. That’s some bitter medicine for the economy. A tenth to three-tenths of a percent decline. We’ll never recover. But will it be effective?

In a letter sent today to Senators Grassley and Gregg, CBO analyzed the macroeconomic effects of an initial Senate version of the stimulus legislation (the Inouye-Baucus amendment in the nature of a substitute to H.R. 1, which is the House stimulus bill). CBO estimates that the Senate legislation would raise output by between 1.4 percent and 4.1 percent by the fourth quarter of 2009; by between 1.2 percent and 3.6 percent by the fourth quarter of 2010; and by between 0.4 percent and 1.2 percent by the fourth quarter of 2011. CBO estimates that the legislation would raise employment by 0.9 million to 2.5 million at the end of 2009; 1.3 million to 3.9 million at the end of 2010; and 0.6 million to 1.9 million at the end of 2011.

Now we can have a real discussion about the fostering of cynicism in the service of opportunism. By the Republicans.

We’re doing something now that will help prevent our recession from getting deeper. The question is whether the Republicans will realize that their best bet is not to force America to chose between the GDP and the GOP.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 19, 2009 3:56 PM
Comment #275815

Obviously Daugherty isn’t concerned that the CBO couches their assessment with words like “could” and “might”.

Big government spending by PO and our liberal congress “could” work and then again, “might” not. Of course Daugherty understands that the $729 billion is just a puny start to the really big spending planned.

Posted by: Jim M at February 20, 2009 12:33 PM
Comment #275820

>Obviously Daugherty isn’t concerned that the CBO couches their assessment with words like “could” and “might”.

Since the CBO’s assessment is how things might turn out if certain paths are followed, I’m not sure how it could couch these phrases other than, ‘could’ and ‘might’. Unless there is a Chrystal Ball hidden away somewhere, every projection is a supposition, i.e., if two and two added together total four, I project that if no other figures are included that two bushels of wheat and two bushels of rye will equal four bushels of grain. The supposition is that nothing else will be added to the equation, but since the total will be assigned in the future, and interference may occur, we cannot be sure, hence, “might” and “could”…

Posted by: Marysdude at February 20, 2009 1:21 PM
Comment #275827

Jim M-
Funny how your estimate of the uncertainty increases as the estimate of the private investment pushed out of the way drops.

You said the Congressional Budget Office said private investment was going to be pushed out of the way. I looked it up. Turns out it has a much greater positive effect than it has a negative effect.

Here’s a good question: is what we lose by this stimulus greater than what we would lose without it? If we enter a deepened recession, then the difficulties of the economy will almost certainly do more damage to the strength of the private sector’s ability to invest.

The health of the economy is something I feel Americans will think worth paying for. Economists out there are essentially saying that we need to stimulate this economy the best we can until we get out of dangerous territory. The efficacy of measures is fair game for discussion. We need to make them the best we can. There’s plenty of room for additional spending, if we’re talking about losing tenths of a percentage point. We need to invest wisely, but we need to invest.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 20, 2009 4:42 PM
Comment #275849

Marysdude,
Why you make a good point, let me direct you back to the 1400’s and why America was discovered by Europe. Since I do believe that in the very near future Man will set out to explore the Stars with or without the Guidance or Help of His Government and Society. For just as our Ancestors could not be kept by the Status Quo, I do believe that America and the World Leaders have no choice in looking at Space as the next Wild West.

David,
D. Boone may have held local titles of authority from time to time; however, it was D. Crockett that became a Statesman from Tenn. if my mind serves me right. Nevertheless, your point is well taken and if I may add; “I do believe the Civil, Political, and Religious Leaders of Today would find the Backwoodsmen a Force to be reckoned with just as our Ancestors did in their time. For remember the movement westward had more to do with getting away from the Rule of the Idiot and Status Quo than opening up the land so that cities could spread.

kctm,
Well considering that even an Alpha Wolf must be a Sheep in order to lead the pack I have to question your logic. Nevertheless, why the Leaders of Sheep fails my memory I do believe that as Americans and Humans “We the People” need to teach the young sheep to use the bridge to cross the creek instead of listening to the advice of the Wolf.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 21, 2009 4:20 AM
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