Showing posts with label US Budget. Show all posts
Showing posts with label US Budget. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Great News!

Two great things have happened in the last 24 hours. We have thankfully returned to a core tenet of Glass Steagal and enacted the so called Volcker Rule which prohibits banks from using customer money to trade for their own gain. I can't understate how integral this is to bringing stability to our economy and, by extension, the world economy.

And we have a deal that looks like it will pass by houses of Congress and fund the government through 2015. Republicans saw what happened when the shut down the government recently and realized it was time to put the short wave radio crowd back in the garage. They were facing disaster in the 2014 elections and now, with the help of the poor rollout of the ACA, they are doing much better. While there will likely be some return to idiocy, electorally speaking, over the next few months, GOP leaders can see a path to holding ground in the House and maybe picking up some seats in the Senate. Of course, things look pretty bad for them in 2016 as 24 Republicans look to hold on to their seats while only 10 Democrats do the same. But who knows what could happen in 3 years?

So, great times, folks in terms of our economic path. It's going to be interesting to see how our economy does now that both of these issues are out of the way. GDP is up, unemployment is down, and consumer confidence, heading into the final stretch of the holiday season, is at a five month high.

Great News!

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Shutdown A Go Go

The Republican adolescent temper tantrum has resulted in the first government shutdown in 18 years. It represents another nail in the coffin that is the conservative movement. They have been reduced to having one central ideology: be against anything and everything that the Democrats support. With this shutdown, that basically means the federal government...the same entity that employs them.

If the shutdown lasts more than a few weeks, it will likely erode our already fragile economic growth. Early estimates put .3 to .4 less GDP because of the shutdown. It makes sense given that 800,000 employees are being furloughed as of this morning. That's a hit to aggregate demand that will surely be felt in an extended shutdown.

I have to admit that part of me feels sorry for the Republicans. In reality, they had no choice.If they caved (which they will anyway), they would have seemed weak and the moonbats from their home districts and states would have primaried them. We don't have problems like that in the Democratic party. In fact, we like it when moderate Democrats win in red states:)

Monday, September 09, 2013

Back In Session

Congress comes back this week from summer vacation with a veritable schmidt load of items on their agenda. First up is whether or not to strike Syria. As of right now, support looks pretty thin in the House. Shocking, that the House GOP would use any means to fuck over the president. My oh my how the hawks have become doves...

Of course, the president is getting much support on the left either so his address to the nation better be a home run tomorrow night otherwise he won't get the vote. Contrary to the media hysterics, if he loses the vote, this will not be the end of his presidency. Congress did not support FDR during the 1930s regarding Hitler's march across Europe. Congress did not support President Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. Anyone remember who those people were?

The budget is probably the next item on the list to tackle and we are already hearing signs of playing chicken again with the debt limit. It seems we will have a large group of people that don't understand that it's money we have already spent. Worse, far too many still haven't grasped the concept of the difference between individual debt and government debt. I'm sure we'll be hearing the anti-spending old ladies out in full force over the next few weeks.

Immigration is likely to take a back seat which is really a drag as reform could solve many of our other economic problems. I was impressed with Marco Rubio and his fellow Senators for coming up with a great bill to address this issue. Unfortunately, it has now come to the short wave radio listening Civil War reinactors in the House so that means it's going nowhere.

Oh, and doesn't the ACA roll out on October 1?

This is going to be one exciting fall!

Monday, August 08, 2011

He Is Not Hu Jintao

As the world watched the Dow plunge over 600 points today, most of the blame has centered on President Obama. This blame is coming from all sides of the political spectrum and, in particular, the left, who think that he needs to lead more strongly. The right is currently skipping with glee as their central mission (Obama must fail), in their eyes, is working. Neither of these perceptions are accurate reflect reality, of course.

To a certain degree, some people will always blame the president. Those that don't like him anyway didn't give him credit when the Dow surged over the time of his presidency so why would they now? It's ridiculously predictable that they will now blame him when it falls. He loses with these folks no matter what he does. The people that do like him seemingly want him to lead in a king like fashion and begin executing jobs plans as well as ordering a single branch overhaul of the economy.

Someone needs to throw some cold water on these folks and make them realize that the president is not Hu Jintao. People from the left and the right complain that he doesn't "have a plan." It's not his fucking job to have a plan. That's the job of Congress. The people on the right are doing it because it helps them in their mission to see him fail. The people on the left are doing it because they want more government control over our country. Again, neither can happen. Again, Barack Obama is not Hu Jintao.

We don't live in a centrally planned economy, folks. Oddly, both sides think we do.

This might be a good time to decimate the lie that has been floating around the right wing blogsphere that President Obama hasn't delivered a budget for the last two years. He has and the evidence for it is right here. Let me repeat this again for those that have trouble hearing. President Obama has delivered a budget every fiscal year since he has been in office. 

The problem with the budget is the same problem with our economy and it's a big reason why the stock market is falling off a cliff right now: Congress. In 2010, Congress failed to adopt a budget resolution because of political cowardice. That's on the Democrats. in 2011, Congress failed to adopt a budget resolution for 2012 because of the true believers running the House presently. That's on the Republicans.

So, Congress is a big part of the fucking problem, folks and, by extension, that means us. We all love our Representative but hate everyone else. Current approval ratings of Congress are in the teens but nothing will change. We can't vote for other districts. We can only work within our own which means Tip O'Neill was right: All politics are local. Until we stop loving our guy no matter what (AKA completely lacking in motivation to change), we should expect the same results.

Honestly, though, much of our economy is beyond the control of the government so Congress isn't the only reason why we are at fault. It is a free market, after all. A big part of our economy (nearly two thirds) is consumer confidence and that's very low at present. Yet we still can't offer this as a substantive reason for why things are all balls right now. So why do we blame the government?

Because we're lazy and we worship rich people. Nothing is ever our fault so why should we have to work to fix things? And being critical of the wealthy these days is tantamount to asking a black guy why he likes to hang out on the porch all day eating fried chicken and watermelon.Most of us lack the ability to seriously reflect on what has to be done to fix the problems we have. Blaming the president and, to a certain degree, blaming Congress for the Dow dropping over 600 points makes no sense when you consider these things, Essentially, we have become Frito Pendejo from the film Idiocracy.

Go away...'batin'...