Everyone remembers the administration’s 2010 “Recovery Summer” meme, just 14-15 months ago. This was soon followed-up by Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner’s “brilliant” op-ed in the New York Times, entitled: “Welcome to the Recovery.” That was published a year ago, to the day. (Here’s another link to remind us of this spectacular messaging fail, from HuffPo, just a few hours ago.)
As recent history reminds us, 90 days later in the mid-term elections, those talking points didn’t work out too well for Democrats.
So, here we are, a year after Secretary Geithner’s failed message appeared in print, and what do we have? Economic realities that tell us things might morph, yet again, from very bad to worse. How bad? Here’s a link to the latest analysis from William Alden over at HuffPo: “Recession Fears Revived As Economic Data Point To Critically Weakened Growth.”
Here’s Meteor Blades, from a few hours ago: “Optimism about the upcoming jobs report is in very short supply. Some advice on reading the numbers.”
And, here’s a link to a post of mine from a week ago: “ECRI Co-Founder Lakshmann Achuthan: “Double-Dip Scare” Immediately Ahead.”
…with ongoing, high unemployment, a double-dip that’s already in play in our nation’s housing market, as well as the potential for a U.S. debt default on the table; not to mention a myriad of potential sovereign defaults on the boards in Europe, this shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise to anyone (other than the confidence fairy) reading this, now should it?
Of course, there are the questions concerning how this might affect the current narrative(s) emanating from Capitol Hill and the White House in the run-up to the 2012 elections, too.
Didn’t Democrats already try the “things-might-be-f*cked-up-now,-but-they’ll-be-even-more-f*cked-up-if-you-vote-for-the-GOP” meme in 2010? Well, seeing as how that worked out so well for us last year, let’s just do it again! But, this time, it’ll be: “New and improved! Now with more anti-Keynesian austerity!”
Then again, even for those in the deepest modes of denial, sometimes reality has a way of biting one in the ass…
…Who was it that said: ”The definition of insanity is repeating the same action and expecting a different result?
Then, of course, over the past few days, the debt ceiling “Grand Bargain” was struck between the center (according to the latest “position” of the Overton Window, but that’s a stretch to the left to refer to the right-of-center as the “center,” IMHO) and the far right of insanity.
As fellow Kossack icebergslim just reminded us: Rachel Maddow just noted that our government now estimates that we’ll lose 1.8 million jobs due to this latest legislative travesty.
And, the public’s quite aware of this inconvenient truth, too. In fact, the latest polls are telling us that nearly half of all Americans say the debt ceiling deal will make the economy worse.
Debt Ceiling: Nearly Half Of Americans Say Deal Makes Economy Worse
August 3, 2011 7:16PM
Since President Obama signed a deal on Tuesday to extend the Treasury’s borrowing authority and reduce the federal deficit, it’s become clear that the agreement has left a lot of people unsatisfied.
This atmosphere of dissatisfaction is mirrored in the wider population, according to a Gallup poll published Wednesday. The poll found that forty-six percent of Americans disapprove of the deal reached in Washington this week, compared with 39 percent who approve of it.
Gallup also found that 41 percent of respondents believe the deal will make the economy worse, while only 17 percent believe it will make the economy better. Thirty-three percent think the deal will have no effect.
Americans who predict negative economic fallout from the debt deal are in good company. A raft of analysts and commentators have warned that the agreement -- which calls for $900 billion in spending cuts now, with either $1.2 trillion or $1.5 trillion in additional cuts to follow -- will do nothing to promote growth.
Eichler notes that the Grand Bargain ”…makes no provisions for economic stimulus, and it fails to extend emergency unemployment benefits and a temporary payroll tax cut, two measures that have kept a bit of money flowing to consumers.”
In the HuffPo article we’re told that a lead economist at JPMorgan is now forecasting that this deal “…would result in a 1.5 percent decline in GDP for 2012 -- an especially discouraging estimate given that GDP for 2011 has grown at an annualized rate of just 0.8 percent, according to the most recent Commerce Department figures.”
Putting it even more succinctly, Kossack LaFeminista spelled it out for us in plain English: “When Everyone Says A Deal Sucks…It Sucks.”
In which I commented…
Everyone but Timmy says it sucks...
So, who are you going to listen to? Virtually every sane economist and government bean-counter, or... the person directly responsible (the head of the NYFRB) for supervising the vampire squids in their run-up to our economy's implosion? Well, being the bipartisan champion that he is, and certainly not one to put the good of the few ahead of the well-being of the masses, our President listens to Secretary Geithner. Go figure?
by bobswern on Wed Aug 03, 2011 at 01:51:00 PM EDT
So, fresh off of his "Grand Bargain," which we’re now being informed will “uncreate” 1.8 million jobs, we learn the President’s going out on the hustings to talk about…jobs? As Politico pointed out earlier on Wednesday, this is being done to…“get Paul Krugman off of their backs?”
Dems want to change the subject fast, and polls show the need to talk more about jobs. Party officials say jobs will be their key message in August, followed by Hill action after Labor Day. Many Democrats fear the budget fights of this year have distracted from the issue that will be central to voters in the fall of 2012 – and officials want to get Paul Krugman off their backs.
As Krugman reminds us over the past few hours…just when we thought we’d seen it all we’re now learning that this is the latest message from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue!
Hope Is Not A Plan
“Conscience of a Liberal” Blog
August 3, 2011, 6:52 pm
Nor is it good politics. So what the heck are they thinking?President Barack Obama’s spokesman is discounting talk that the economy may be headed back into recession, despite recent concerns of economists.
Spokesman Jay Carney says there is no question that economic growth and job creation have slowed over the past half year.
But, Carney told a White House briefing, “We do not believe that there is a threat of a double-dip recession.”
Of course there’s a threat…Who, exactly, is at the White House who knows better?
And think about the politics here. For two years the White House has been determinedly cheerful, always declaring that the recovery was on track, that its policies were working fine. And all it did was squander its credibility. Maybe admitting the truth, saying that in fact we hadn’t done nearly enough, would not have helped get useful legislation through Congress. But at least it would have conveyed the message that the WH was living in the same reality as ordinary workers.
Now they’re doing it again. To what purpose? …At this point, after the “summer of recovery” came and went a whole year ago?
Spin is part of politics. But sometimes you have to know when to stop.
Bold type is diarist’s emphasis.
As I noted in another diary, on Sunday, voters are tuning out Democratic messaging.
Why? Because Democrats on Main Street are sick and tired of our elected officials saying one thing and doing another. They want results.
Has our Party learned nothing from 2010?