Friday, January 30, 2009

The Financial Debacle Continues . . .

What Do Republicans Want? Warmed-Over Bush Economics!

It is well-known that not a single Republican voted for the Obama economic recovery plan in the U.S. House of Representatives. Less known is the Republican alternative, which almost every member of their party supported: GOP Whip Eric Cantor’s Amendment #195.

The Republican alternative, costing $478 billion, contained nine tax cuts and an extension of unemployment benefits—in other words, no infrastructure spending, no assistance to the states, and almost no help to struggling Americans.

So far, all the debate has centered on what is good or bad about the Obama/Democratic economic recovery plan. It’s time we nailed the Republicans for their pitiful plan. >>MORE

New ads from Americans United For Change target
Sens. Snowe, Collins, Murkowski, Grassley, Gregg for quick passage:

What a surprise. I get nothing from the House stimulus package.


Too "rich" to get a withholding or EITC tax cut. Too "poor" to get a business tax cut. Too single (and too gay) to get a child tax cut.

It's not about me. It's about what I represent. Millions of Americans who make enough money to earn a good living, but who live in large expensive urban areas, have tens of thousands (if not more) in student loans, and now are saddled with expensive mortgages (it costs a lot more to get a one-bedroom condo in the city than a house in the country) and more. We are not "rich." If we lived in Topeka, we'd be rich. But we don't. So why treat us like we are?

The House stimulus bill, like every other piece of legislation passed by Congress and offered by this and every other administration, does not take into account where people live, or what their cost of living is, when determining whether they're "rich." It's particularly ironic, and unfair, since the federal government pays its own employees more based on where they live (i.e., based on the local cost of living). >>MORE

The "Can't You See That Man Is a Ni--" House vote

Michael Lind argues that the House vote by Republicans and Southern Blue Dog Democrats against the stimulus package was less about ideology or any sense of fiscal responsibility than it was yet another example of the South still fighting the Civil War:
On Wednesday, January 28, 2009, President Barack Obama’s $819 billion stimulus plan passed the House of Representatives, despite the solid opposition of the Confederates.

By the Confederates I mean the Republican Party and their allies among Southern conservative Democrats. The battle in Washington is not between liberals and conservatives; it is between the Union and the South. . . . >>MORE

Pssst, Let’s Nationalize The Banks. We Just Won’t Talk About It.

David Sanger in the New York Times writes about the possibility that our banking system is so
broken that we may need to nationalize the banks. And in the process, he almost accidentally points out one of the grand ironies of our equally broken political discourse:
Nationalization could pull the banks out of that dive, at least temporarily, as the government injected capital, hired new managers and ordered a restart to lending. But some Republicans who bit their tongues when President George W. Bush ordered huge interventions in the market would charge that Mr. Obama was steering America toward socialism. . . . >>MORE

Stop Rearranging Deck Chairs on the Titanic and Nationalize the Damn Banks

The painful but unavoidable reality of the financial crisis is that every dollar spent trying to prop up a failing bank is just good money thrown after bad; a taxpayer rip-off, short and sweet.

But in Washington, many are trying to avoid that fact nonetheless. Economist Paul Krugman wrote that the political establishment has "become devotees of a new kind of voodoo [economics]: the belief that by performing elaborate financial rituals we can keep dead banks walking." Goldman Sachs' economists estimate that those rituals might cost up to $4 trillion to perform.

It's time that the government stops flailing around with piecemeal bailouts and loan guarantees, takes over these institutions -- takes them out of private ownership -- sells off their good assets in an orderly way, trashes the toxic stuff and then resells them to the private sector down the road as leaner institutions that are dedicated to the primary purpose of banking: making loans and holding deposits. >>MORE

Stupid Democrats, and Presidents

My friend Deacon trashed the House Democrats' recovery bill yesterday as a piece of crap, and sounded like he was letting the House GOP off the hook for what he described as a meaningless vote.

I am not so charitable. But I am also not very enamored of what I've seen from the Dems so far either, at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue.

First, House Dems and the White House spent useless energy to accommodate Republican demands. Why? The critical flaw in this line of "lets be bipartisan thinking" is that there are no GOP moderates in the House anymore. After the last two elections, all that is left in the House GOP caucus are a pack of knuckle-dragging cretins who don't merit any role in deliberative politics. So why does anyone in the House Democratic leadership or the White House give a sh*t about what they want? Why in hell do the Dems even deal with a far right extremist cabal at all? The House Republican caucus should be isolated and tagged as obstructionist end-timers every single day for the next two years, and yet Obama and Hoyer actually engage these bastards.>>

Tone Deaf


The disconnect is everywhere now. Republicans and right-wing bloggers think they’ve shown the Obama Administration what’s what. For example, Kathleen Parker seems to think President Obama has been bested by Rush Limbaugh –
Obama was cool even when, at that same GOP meeting, he urged Republicans to stop listening to Rush Limbaugh. No anger, just angst. “You can’t just listen to Rush Limbaugh and get things done.”

Excuse me, Mr. President, but you’ve been baited by none other than the Master Fisherman. Limbaugh tossed you a lure and you chomped. … the backfire Obama felt in West Virginia was a gentle zephyr compared to the blowback that can be bellowed by El Rushbo. >>

The Financial Debacle Continues . . .SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
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