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View Diary: A recovery that's 11 million jobs short (82 comments)

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  •  Yet he is clearly proud he's kept the train (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    msmacgyver, frandor55, GreyHawk, blueness

    from coming completely off the rails. It's another piece of crap handed to him by Republicans, and worse, conservative Democrats in Congress. Yes, you can (and I have to some extent) argued he could have fought more. But with psychopaths like Boner and DeMinted what could we really have gotten? I don't know, I'd like to have found out but I really don't know. So anyways, those rat-rapers in Congress knew a full-blown stimulus would work. But with Republicans they were already looking for ways to tarnish Obama. And the Conservadem/Blue Dogs? I have no clue what they were hoping for. But that gave us an anemic recovery and he can take credit for it not being worse. So what does he do in '12 with that?

    Modern Conservatism isn't simply about them owning as much as possible; it's also about breaking anything they can't own.

    by ontheleftcoast on Thu Jul 07, 2011 at 07:54:25 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  A recovery was never in the realm of possibility (5+ / 0-)

      ...without nationalizing the large banks and putting a floor under the residential real estate market.

      All the stimulus in the world would be pissed in wind without middle class asset stabilization -- the very same assets that Wall Street corrupted and infected the entire world with.

      Now, the asset stripping will continue in the US and the wealth gap will grow ever wider. US citizens do not even own the natural resources of their own nation. They are Colonists on a work farm, basically, competing for jobs and survival.

      •  It will continue without a major change to the (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Pluto, msmacgyver, Mnemosyne, schnecke21

        attitude and actions of the workers in this country. I don't think it's impossible to change, but I also don't think enough folks will get motivated to do something about it because any attempt to do so will be called "communism" and after 50+ years of programming from the Cold War that immediately dampens any populist movement. But let's not pretend that the oligarchy ever intended to scare us about socialism or communism. Nah, that would be "conspiracy theory" stuff.

        Modern Conservatism isn't simply about them owning as much as possible; it's also about breaking anything they can't own.

        by ontheleftcoast on Thu Jul 07, 2011 at 08:15:19 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Manipulationg the RE market is unwise. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Uncle Milty
        putting a floor under the residential real estate market
        Trying to manipulate the RE market via intervention to put an arbitrary "floor" under housing prices is ill-advised.

        Home builders would profit of course, real estate agents would profit of course, landlords would profit of course, and banks would profit of course. However, it would force people who could reasonably own homes out of the market and keep them in rentals, perhaps forever.

        And, ultimately, it's just kicking the can down the road because as the manipulation ends (as it must), housing will return to its natural market price (probably, inflation adjusted, to around the level it was in the 1970s).

    •  Yes and no (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      msmacgyver, schnecke21

      I recognize that President Obama was limited in what he could actually do by the combination of Republicans and Conservadems.

      That does not mean, however, that he couldn't have made the pitch for more.  There's sometimes value in going on record for what is needed, instead of just for what you can get.

      Political Compass: -6.75, -3.08

      by TexasTom on Thu Jul 07, 2011 at 08:19:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, I feel that was poorly handled on his part (0+ / 0-)

        But we can play "arm chair" president for a long time and not ever really know what could be done.

        Modern Conservatism isn't simply about them owning as much as possible; it's also about breaking anything they can't own.

        by ontheleftcoast on Thu Jul 07, 2011 at 08:21:02 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  While there is no doubt the best options (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        involved legislation, there were and are plenty of things the White House can do.  For whatever reason, they aren't doing it.  And very few people are demanding that they do.

        •  What can the White House do without (0+ / 0-)

          congress?  I'm not challenging your statement, I'm interested.

          May the forces of evil become confused on the way to your house. George Carlin

          by msmacgyver on Thu Jul 07, 2011 at 08:31:16 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Sure thing (5+ / 0-)

            There is plenty that can be done without additional legislation. (Sorry for repeating myself - again).

            The American Prospect did a special report on it.

            This is from Robert Kuttner's introduction:

            Several laws on the books already prohibit theft of wages and phony classification of permanent workers as temps or contract hires and guarantee the right to organize or join a union and to be paid a minimum wage. None of these statutes is adequate, but under George W. Bush, the executive branch did its best not to enforce them.

            The other source of leverage, potentially much more effective, is government's power as a contractor. The U.S. government spends half a trillion dollars a year to buy goods and services from the private sector. Federal procurement, directly or indirectly, influences about one job in four in the entire economy. And most large national companies do business with the government. That goes for service companies such as FedEx; big corporations providing security guards; manufacturing companies that make everything from airplane parts to uniforms; and food-processing companies that provide school lunches. A whole other set of corporations, such as nursing-home chains, are indirect recipients of federal grants under Medicaid.

            Labor journalist Mike Elk has also reported on this possibility.

            In the last part of the Clinton administration, when Podesta was White House Chief of Staff, the government issued executive orders to implement "high road" contracting practices that would have enforced laws on the books barring companies that broke labor, safety, and environmental laws from receiving federal contracts. President Bill Clinton’s “contractor responsibility rule” would have created guidelines, a centralized database and data standards to prevent bad actor corporations from receiving government contracts. (The George W. Bush administration ended up blocking implementation of the orders.)

            Despite laws that forbid companies who break the law from receiving government’s contracts, these laws are rarely enforced by the federal government. As I wrote in February, only a handful of major corporations that have committed major crimes have been suspended from receiving government contracts since the mid-1990s, according to testimony before Congress by the Project on Government Oversight: “General Electric (for a period of five days); now-defunct companies WorldCom, Enron and Arthur Anderson; Boeing (which received multiple waivers to receive new contracts during its suspension); and IBM (for a period of eight days in 2008).”

            For more, see this piece testimony from the Center for American Progress. Soon after the 2010 election, CAP did a whole report on things the president could do to advance progressive change (including, but not limited to the economy) that didn't require new legislation. It included various means to promote automatic mediation to limit foreclosures and speed resolution.

            The first step in addressing jobs is for everyone to understand that the president has the power to address jobs. That must change.  

            (It's also worth remembering that states can do plenty too.  The Progressive States Network had lots of great ideas on that score.)

          •  Obama had his chance... (0+ / 0-)

            ...with both houses of congress and he wasted it.

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