Sunday, January 30, 2011
Once was that 'hard times' was when, despite slack job markets, political power shifted to workers and labor and progressive ideas.
Have you noticed that the current perception, based in reality, is that the opposite is somehow occurring?
Anyway, last week's update on the coming fight over State budgets. EJ McMahon in the WSJ (link).
Of course, without some metric to suggest that public sector unions are somehow getting sweet deals, this is a bit thinly supported.
Posted by Amicus at 2:42 AM
The entire analysis is worth the read.
Posted by Amicus at 2:35 AM
Who wouldn't agree with Piven's assessment in this clip?
Now, the Right got its way, in spades, on ACORN. We know that part of that was pressuring lawmakers and even a concerted disinformation campaign.
So, what does the Left - what does the Nation - do about this stuff from Beck and FOX? Is it sufficient to simply remark outrage and move on to the next day's outrage?
Friday, January 21, 2011
I don't usually just link a story, but Bob just has a way with putting things, including the made-of-sand part, if you get the reference (that maybe he didn't even intend):
Dick Cheney's Heart Device Was Developed With Taxpayer Money
Posted by Amicus at 9:29 AM
Bankruptcy court is dangerous, apparently, so there has to be another avenue.
What's the bet that "other avenue" is stacked? In GOPTea-logic, if someone is going to be welched on, it would be the holders of pension liabilities, the pensioners, not the people who bought the bonds, right?
One does sense the odor of another bailout of the wealthiest, although it is a bit early to say.
Posted by Amicus at 9:19 AM
It appears that former Countrywide CEO and "friend" of congrisscritters is good for another $4.0 billion writedown.
leading to infamous quotes surrounding 'it's a liquidity problem, not a solvency problem'.
Where's the mash-up of the CNBC people who said that for weeks and weeks and called it 'business reporting'?
The Agony and the Ecstasy
Posted by Amicus at 8:29 AM
Saturday, January 15, 2011
$1 BILLION "WASTE FRAUD AND ABUSE"?
So, "comprehensive immigration reform", i.e. actually doing something sensible about the millions of people who are already here illegally, had to wait, according to GOP logic, until we had secured the borders. Fine.
Now, it turns out that Bush-41 rushed the legislation, put up a totally daft billion dollars to a contractor (Boeing) for the super-amazing 'virtual fence' and have delivered nothing, including in the past two years, until Napolitano finally canceled the project, putting a note of the same in this week's Friday trash.
Because all of that looks like a politically self-serving failure, it's more than just the regular-way boondoggle, notwithstanding the millions of lives who really deserve better from us all. And, of course, this blog predicted that the GOP Senators were either lying to the electorate or fooling themselves about the ultimate cost, when they voted a paltry sum in the first round. There have been many rounds of funding, since...
In case you wanted to get angry:
Posted by Amicus at 8:48 AM
Friday, January 14, 2011
To all those hipsters who were impressed with "escape velocity" and, you know, this or that Wall Street economist who upped their 2011 GDP forecast (as if ...):
"U.S. states will contend with about $140 billion in deficits in the next fiscal year, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a Washington research group, said in a report issued Dec. 16."
How much was that social security tax cut, $120B?, maybe half of which will go to pay down debt and keep pace with rising energy prices?
"I think we need a bigger boat."
And, in case that doesn't make the case, consider these "headwinds", which suggest that even fewer are going to have additional cash to spend because of the 'tax holiday':
Posted by Amicus at 12:30 AM
Thursday, January 13, 2011
The Obama memorial speech in Arizona was Presidential.
There is no criticism, except that, in times of crisis, America (like others?) falls back on American exceptionalism, which is fine and bogus at the same time.
The President told a nation weary of the cynical politics of paralysis of the past two years, in which the GOP attempted to slow-down, hold-back, and delay an energetic, engaging new President, that everyone should remain hopeful.
Next week, the GOP will be back to do-nothing strategies like repealing the Health Care Affordability act and, no doubt, launching an investigation into "the Clintons", and pushing the bogus, saying-nothing phrase, "comprehensive tax reform".
Afterall, those financing the GOP will only give up so much paid "vacation".
Posted by Amicus at 5:54 AM
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
DEMS NEED THEIR OWN LANGUAGE
We're told that the tax code is too complex, so we need to simplify it, and call doing so "Comprehensive Tax Reform".
But simple is not efficient, is it? I mean, you can do great harm with solutions that are too simple and, thereby, insufficient to their corresponding problems.
Would you say that a three-gear shift is better than a five-gear shift, just because it is simpler? No. Why are three tax brackets better, then?
I would expect the tax law of any developed, diversified economy to be complex, to be just. Human activity is varied and complex and I can't see how you can deny that or pretend that there is a simple solution.
Smart regulation and smart taxation doesn't have to do with simplification, per se.
Posted by Amicus at 7:53 PM
Like so many, she keeps forgetting that it is money that makes the world go round.
So, on gun control, if there is a tax cut in it, then something could be done.
Otherwise, the issue suits the politics of money, by dividing the electorate so that some vote against their economic interest. (Although the new dog whistle for the same is 'Comprehensive Tax Reform').
Almost all the rest is noise. Almost. Sad, but true.
[If you doubt me, consider that 'Big Tobacco' killed more people, perhaps even more gruesomely, and it was a struggle to change it for how long? It was mostly when other fortunes were made that the old ones could be challenged. The role of science, public health (including socialized health cost) was arguably of minimal impact on the long trajectory of 'the right to smoke'.]
Posted by Amicus at 7:47 PM
...of the GOP-Tea is astounding on so many topics, but, given the recent frothing over the first amendment, especially for Christians, consider this note on the "free speech" of the Westboro Baptist group's intention to exercise free speech at the upcoming Tucson memorial(s):
“Such despicable acts of emotional terrorism will not be tolerated in the State of Arizona,” Ms. Brewer said in a statement
It's a welcome statement, but as a position for the current crop of GOP-Tea, how much more two-faced can you get on the first amendment?
Posted by Amicus at 7:42 PM
Saturday, January 8, 2011
With millions - millions - facing an employment situation that will remain anemic for years, according to testimony given by Fed Chief Bernanke this week and with American soldiers dying daily in Afghanistan's "surge", it was a horror to watch Republicans stage a smug show that there was some urgency associated with reading the Constitution on the floor of the House.
But, today, is worse.
Just a day after declining to say whether the President of the United States is a legitimate official because the new Speaker of the House didn't want to dictate what people believe, he releases a statement about violence in America.
Posted by Amicus at 4:05 PM