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Open Thread for Night Owls
At the Guardian, Decca Aitkenhead interviews Paul Krugman about his book End This Depression Now!. Some excerpts:
President Obama is the only world leader who has attempted a Keynesian stimulus programme. Why has it been only minimally effective? Why do most other western leaders still insist the only way out is to tighten our belts and pay off our debts, when that clearly isn't working either? And how come the bankers, credit agencies and bond traders are still treated with cowed reverence—don't frighten the markets—when they got us into this mess?

These mysteries were beginning to make me feel as if I must be going mad—but since reading Paul Krugman's new book, I fear I'm in danger instead of becoming a bore. It's the sort of book you wish were compulsory reading, and want to quote to anyone who'll listen, because End This Depression Now! provides a comprehensive narrative of how we have ended up doing the opposite of what logic and history tell us we must do to get out of this crisis. [...]

end this depression now book cover
In the years following the Great Depression, governments imposed regulatory rules upon the banking system to ensure that we could never again become indebted enough to make us vulnerable to a crisis. "But if it's been a long time since the last major economic crisis, people get careless about debt; they forget the risks. Bankers go to politicians and say: 'We don't need these pesky regulations,' and the politicians say: 'You're right—nothing bad has happened for a while.'"

That process began in earnest in 1980, under President Reagan. One by one the regulations on banking were lifted, until "we lost the safeguards, and it meant there was an increasingly wild and woolly financial system willing to lend lots of money". Politicians were in part persuaded to deregulate by the argument that it would make us all richer. And to this day, "there's this very widespread belief that there was, in fact, a great acceleration in growth. But this really isn't hard. You sit down for a minute with the national account statistics, and you see it ain't so."

If we divide the period between the second world war and 2008 into two halves, "the first half is a really dramatic improvement to living standards, and the second half is not." It was certainly dramatic for the top 0.01%, who saw a seven-fold increase in income; in 2006, for example, the 25 highest-paid hedge fund managers in America earned $14bn, three times the combined salaries of New York City's 80,000 school teachers. But between 1980 and the crash, the median US household income went up by only roughly 20%. "So it's a total disconnect."

Why would economists claim ordinary people were getting much richer if they weren't? "The answer, I think, has to be that you need to ask: 'Well who are the people who say these things hanging out with? What is their social circle?' And if you're a finance professor at the University of Chicago, the people that you're likely to meet from the alleged real world are going to be people from Wall Street – for whom the past 30 years have, in fact, been wonderful. If you're a mover and shaker in the UK, you're probably hanging out with people from the City. I think that is the story of the disconnect." [...]

Since the crash Krugman has become the undisputed Cassandra of academia, but he jokes: "I'm kind of sick of being Cassandra. I'd like to actually win for once, instead of being vindicated by the disaster coming – as predicted. I'd like to see my arguments about preventing the disaster taken into account instead."

The likelihood of that is a fascinating question. Krugman is not the most clubbable of fellows. In person he's quite offhand, an odd mixture of shy and intensely self-assured, and with his stocky build and salt-and-pepper beard he conveys the impression of a very clever badger, burrowing away in the undergrowth of economic detail, ready to give quite a sharp bite if you get in his way. His public criticisms of the Obama administration have upset many Democrats in the US, while his more vociferous criticisms of George Bush used to earn him death threats from angry rightwingers.

Blast from the Past. At Daily Kos on this date in 2010:

If they spoke English, "What the hell [did we do to deserve this]?" might well be what the 'gators in the Louisiana wetlands would be asking the herons these days as the oil creeps in from the Gulf gusher. But, of course, those are actually the boneheaded words of BP CEO Tony Hayward, whose string of pronouncements over the past five weeks appears increasingly reptilian. The 'gators and herons have nothing to answer for. BP has had nearly 800 recorded safety violations since 2007.

Given BP's arrogant recklessness 800 fathoms beneath the sea and the whacks Hayward's shoot-from-the-lip style have gotten from the media, one would expect that the giant company's PR department would have by now stapled Mr. Hayward's tongue to the roof of his mouth for the duration. But apparently it is as helpless to stanch the flow of toxicity passing through his lips as engineers are to stop the oil gushing from the sea floor.

A politician's staff calls what Hayward is doing "misspeaking" when their boss is caught out. As when he said just a few days ago: "We're sorry for the massive disruption it's caused to their lives. There's no one who wants this thing over more than I do, I'd like my life back." If the 11 dead oil workers could speak, they might have something to say about that. But, of course, Hayward had forgotten all about them in his bellyaching over what he has to put up with to collect his $4.5 million annual compensation package.

Tweet of the Day:

BBC journalist's response to criticism that live coverage Queen's jubilee sycophantic: "Pageant coverage not news. No need for balance".
@chrismcgreal via web

High Impact Posts. Top Comments.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:30 PM PDT.

Also republished by ClassWarfare Newsletter: WallStreet VS Working Class Global Occupy movement, Progressive Hippie, and German American Friendship Group.

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Comment Preferences

  •  378,373 registered users on dKos now. (25+ / 0-)

    Here are the 10 newest registered users on dKos. Hope to see their comments and diaries here soon!  (If they're not all spammers.)


    And since our society is obsessed with numbers that end in a lot of zeros as milestones, here's a special shoutout to users:
    #377,300: ewaldallred38
    #377,400: wilburnrtl410 (spammer)
    #377,500: AlonaHemken9596
    #377,600: gillesbryan614 (spammer)
    #377,700: rhyshauge36
    #377,800: everetteharr1230
    #377,900: lennymooney1026
    #378,000: emmittpuggaa716 (spammer)
    #378,100: york8899
    #378,200: efrainthorse23 (spammer)
    #378,300: adamakemp119

    We've added a whopping 1,144 more users in just the last 24 hours.  This is a continuation of the past two weeks where we've been absolutely flooded with new users.  I'm pretty sure almost all of these new users are spammers or bots.  Notice how they all have a number at the end.  What are they planning?

    And for your Diary Rescue music pleasure, here's Steve Winwood's full 5-minute version of "While You See a Chance", from 1981.

  •  So my apartment manager... (8+ / 1-)

    went into a crazy shouting tirade yesterday, and threatened a tenant he had 30 days notice to leave, despite him signing the lease already.  She claimed because her boss hadn't signed the lease as well, it wasn't valid, so she could simply disregard it.

    Is this legally true, or did she just break the law??  Now, my apartment complex is managed by an LLC, and none of us seem to know who's actually behind it.  Their official address is nothing more than a P.O. Box.

    All the tenant did was complain that the room wasn't ready when promised, which seems to have been because of the apartment manager's own incompetence.  This person was moving across the hall, still in the same apartment complex.  The tenants in that place were supposed to move out on Friday, and then the cleaners were supposed to come clean the carpet so it'd be ready by noon on Saturday for this person to move in.

    But she simply didn't show up on Friday to get the keys from those people, and told them she'd be here on Saturday.  But she didn't push back the date for the other tenant, and the cleaners went to his place with his furniture still there, since he didn't have the key to the new place yet.

    She claims none of this is her fault, and started screaming at both sets of tenants, as well as the cleaning crew, so that even some people the floor above could hear it.

    Is this legal?  If you sign the lease to an apartment, but the apartment manager's boss, or whoever is supposed to, doesn't sign it, does that mean it's void?

    Earlier this year, she pulled the same shit with some other tenants, claiming that because her boss hadn't signed the lease as well (about 3 months after they moved in), it was OK for her to suddenly charge them $50 more per month for rent, and take it or move out in the middle of the school year.

    Do the tenants have a legitimate legal case against her?  But also, is it worth it, given that we're mostly all college students who are only living in these apartments for a year or so, and seriously don't have the time to go to court while dealing with studying and exams?

    •  Seems to me that she is the agent for the complex (5+ / 0-)

      and gives a tenant a lease to sign, it would be a valid lease. but I'm not a lawyer. This link should help. Filing complaints also should help. She sounds like a piece of work. Best of luck.

      if a habitat is flooded, the improvement for target fishes increases by an infinite percentage...because a habitat suitability index that is even a tiny fraction of 1 is still infinitely higher than zero, which is the suitability of dry land to fishes.

      by mrsgoo on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 09:03:28 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  In most situations, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      An agent had binding authority stemming from the owner.

      The act of giving a lease is making an "offer."
      The signature from the tenant is "acceptance."
      Bingo, written contract.

      Although towns and cities often create statutes that alter this standard agreement.

      What we call god is merely a living creature with superior technology & understanding. If their fragile egos demand prayer, they lose that superiority.

      by agnostic on Mon Jun 04, 2012 at 02:51:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hey Paul, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    palantir, Aunt Pat, Jeff Y

    you "won" with NATFA.  The people you accused of lying lost, as did the country.

    "F*** the Revolution" -Bono

    by Rustbelt Dem on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:33:28 PM PDT

  •  Ron Paul fans say Syria's Assad is the GOOD guy. (5+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    annieli, Jeff Y, palantir, grover, gramofsam1
    Hidden by:

    The Ron Paul fans are all quoting this now from Jeff Prager:

    The presence of Syrian National Transitional Council head Bassma Kodmani at the 2012 Bilderberg conference clearly indicates that power brokers at the elite confab will be discussing the effort to topple President Bashar Al-Assad and install a NATO-friendly administration in the violence-stricken country. What I don't understand is why so few people seem to get it. We sat back and watched this thing play out the same way in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia and elsewhere and we've seen it for decades with the breakup of Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union. Those two countries were turned into 15 little mini-mafia states. In Egypt and Tunisia we're trying to install pro-US government systems, in Somalia and Sudan we're still fighting with boots and weapons, in Libya we're kind of in wait-and-see mode and in Iraq we succeeded in fully destroying the country which is the final end goal for the most recalcitrant and defiant rulers. Why would anyone think that Assad is killing his own people? Why? Obviously NATO, the UK, the US, Israel, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and certainly several other players are intimately involved with arming the Assad opposition in Syria. These Al Qaeda "freedom fighter" folks aren't buying rocket propelled grenades at your local Syrian WalMart.
    So... Assad's the good guy just trying to stop al-Qaeda freedom fighters???

    Wow................................  BTW, who is Jeff Prager (not to be confused with sex therapist Dennis Prager)?  This is his info:

    Free Speech. Foreign and Domestic Zionists are behind 911

    9/11 was a Zionist, Mossad, CIA, NeoCon Conspiracy. If you don't get it I probably can't help you but I promise, I'm going to try.

    ♥ * * * PRIVACY NOTICE * * * ♥

    WARNING-any person and/or institution and/or Agency of any governmental, state, city structure including but not limited to the United States Federal Government, corporations, banks, collection agencies and their entities using or monitoring/using this website contents or any of its associated websites, you do NOT have my permission to utilize ANY of my profile information nor any of the content contained herein including, but not limited to my photos, and/or the comments made about my photos or any other "picture" art posted on my profile. You are hereby notified that you are STRICTLY PROHIBITED from disclosing, copying, distributing, disseminating or taking any other action, legal or otherwise, against me, my family, my relatives, my friends in regards to this profile and contents herein. The foregoing prohibitions also apply to your employee(s), agent(s), student(s) or any other personnel under your direction or control. The contents of this profile are private and legally privileged and confidential information, and the violation of my personal privacy is punishable by law.

    Tinfoil much?  And is he going to try to sue me or DailyKos for having posted that here, despite him making it publicly available for anyone on Facebook to see?
    •  you really gotta quit these folks, BK /nt (12+ / 0-)

      slutty voter for a "dangerous president"; Präsidentenelf-maßschach; Warning-Some Snark Above"Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Sciant terra viam monstrare." 政治委员, 政委!

      by annieli on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:39:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Bruinkid, have you tried to sell the Paulturds (9+ / 0-)

      gold yet? If not, you should.

      I've got some rocks and gold paint, we could make a mint off of the tin foil Paulclowns!


      "Load up on guns, bring your friends. It's fun to lose and to pretend" - Kurt Cobain

      by Jeff Y on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:42:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Oh, and they hate Krugman too. (8+ / 0-)

      They've been spreading around this motivational poster.  Hmm, the embed code for it only uses a tiny version that's basically unreadable for some reason.  It says:

      "To fight this recession the Fed needs more than a snapback; it needs soaring household spending to offset moribund business investment.  And to do that, as Paul McCulley of Pimco put it, Alan Greenspan needs to create a housing bubble to replace the Nasdaq bubble."
      - Paul Krugman, 2002

      Failing Since 1936

      And then they all cheer about how Krugman is evil and Ron Paul knows all.  Sigh.  They're also spreading around this picture too of Willy Wonka going, "Without coercion no one would build a road?  Oh yes, tell me all about the shortage of cotton we've been having ever since we abolished slavery."

      One of the female Ron Paul fans I know responded thusly when someone else pointed out how silly that premise was:

      Think about it this way. If a company wants to establish itself somewhere....and there are no roads to get to where this company would it ever thrive? It wouldn't. Thus the company would have to build a road in order for people to get to it. It is absolutely ridiculous to say that without government there would be no roads that the public could use. What is government made up of? People. So whether its via gov or not there roads would exist and people would utilize those roads.
    •  I noticed you didn't post a link there. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Probably a good idea. Tin-foil wearing conspiracy theorists aren't neccessarily shy about legal action.

      You do realize that you can't just lift original content off a website and put it on another, right? Even if stuff is right out there in the open for everyone to see?  That's called intellectual property theft, even if the property doesn't seem very intellectual.

      This "privacy policy" is very strange, but it's his original work. Certainly, it does not appear to be boilerplate.

      Technically, you could likely argue fair use. But who wants to be entangled with this guy for 2-4 years of litigation?

      So, I'm laughing with you, of course.

      But stuff on the Internet is still legally protected.
      If I post poetry on Facebook, you do not have the right to repost it here.

      © grover

      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

      by grover on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 11:58:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  But what about all those cases... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        grover, JeffW

        of local politicians and other right-wingers saying incredibly hateful and racist stuff on Facebook, and people posting screenshots and links of it to make it go viral and publicly expose these people as bigots?

        Why haven't any of them sued?  Or is it because so many people started sharing, they couldn't figure out who to sue?

        •  Fair use says you can take a bit of something (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          BruinKid, JeffW

          To discuss for a variety of uses: to rebroadcast for a news report is one.   So mostly in these cases, fair use would be the best defense.  Links back to the original are ok (assuming the original is still online). And it's the very nature of Twitter to rebroadcast these little bits. So I think Twitter is a medium where technology may be out ahead of the law.

          This is a good guide. The info on fair use is toward the bottom:

          (There are attorneys who make good livings parsing out what this means. I tend to err on the side of being cautious and citing no more than a few lines with a link for the rest of the story. )

          And yes, of course, knowing who took the offending item off the internet and released it to reproduce virally is always a major sticking point, as is the fact that in the case of a truly embarrassing scandal, the harmed party rarely wants to keep the offending matter out in the open any longer than they need to, and litigation preserves everything and drags everything out for a long time, often with highlighted media attention.

          © grover

          So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

          by grover on Mon Jun 04, 2012 at 12:33:02 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Two nights/mornings ago (11+ / 0-)

    I listened to Krugman being interviewed on BBC by Tory-type Sarah something or other smug voiced irritating person.  She defended austerity and found a few other economists who found Krugman "shrill."  He, on the other hand, was calm and sane.  I'm not a Krugman fangirl -- but I do recognize his brilliance.

    Vi er alle norske " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:35:02 PM PDT

  •  The Treasury Secretary in the Second Term (8+ / 0-)
    Since the crash Krugman has become the undisputed Cassandra of academia, but he jokes: "I'm kind of sick of being Cassandra. I'd like to actually win for once, instead of being vindicated by the disaster coming – as predicted. I'd like to see my arguments about preventing the disaster taken into account instead."

    slutty voter for a "dangerous president"; Präsidentenelf-maßschach; Warning-Some Snark Above"Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Sciant terra viam monstrare." 政治委员, 政委!

    by annieli on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:38:31 PM PDT

  •  It's pathetic that Scott Brown has nothing to run (6+ / 0-)

    on other than to smear Elizabeth Warren for her cherokee heritage.

    Whether or not Warren put it down on a resume or an application is meaningless, because she actually IS of cherokee heritage.

    But the smear has served it's purpose for Brown, check out the horrible comments from the wingnutters on this Elizabeth Warren article in the Chicago Tribune today:

    "Load up on guns, bring your friends. It's fun to lose and to pretend" - Kurt Cobain

    by Jeff Y on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:38:44 PM PDT

    •  The intent of course is to suggest... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JeffW, Jeff Y

      ...that Prof. Warren is and always has been an "Affirmative Action" beneficiary who would never have gotten as high up the ladder as she has if she hadn't unjustly leap-frogged over more worthy, more deserving candidates early on in her scholarship and professional life.

      One of a handful of "truthiness" themes that are tweaked to suit the offending political opponent.

      When you are right you cannot be too radical; when you are wrong, you cannot be too conservative. --Martin Luther King Jr.

      by Egalitare on Mon Jun 04, 2012 at 05:29:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Krugman vs limbaugh - who's hearing Krugman? (6+ / 0-)

    RW radio beats Krugman every time cause it's LOUDER and gets a free speech free ride

    This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and partisan lying by broadcasting sports on Limbaugh radio stations.

    by certainot on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:40:59 PM PDT

  •  PPP WI-Gov Walker 50 Barrett 47 (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    palantir, OLinda, Jeff Y, Aunt Pat, Eric Nelson

    since they almost always skew 2-3 points repub call this a tie.

  •  Krugman (10+ / 0-)

    Krugman is not the most clubbable of fellows. In person he's quite offhand, an odd mixture of shy and intensely self-assured, and with his stocky build and salt-and-pepper beard he conveys the impression of a very clever badger, burrowing away in the undergrowth of economic detail, ready to give quite a sharp bite if you get in his way.

    Love this. It so perfectly describes him. Wonder what Paul thinks about it.

    Just Win, Baby. -- Al Rodgers, Feb. 24, 2012

    by OLinda on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:46:51 PM PDT

  •  Sharp-tailed Grouse Battle (14+ / 0-)

    The Cornell Ornithology Lab has a rather odd policy of requiring a paid membership to participate in one of their bird watch programs (FeederWatch) but there are open (free to join) projects such as eBird that they sponsor.

    At any rate I hope you all enjoy the bird watching.

  •  Awww, Participants in the Adult Conversation are (6+ / 0-)

    so cute when they bump into 1975.

    Image Hosted by

    Hey dickheads, and I'm talking to Krugman and Aitkenhead, you can't effing imagine what those of us who saw today 2 generations ago see today.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:52:28 PM PDT

  •  DKos Fantasy Football Dynasty League (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Aunt Pat, Jeff Y

    Here, it interested.

    We need 5 more guys or gals to get a league up and running.

    "The attack on the truth by war begins long before war starts and continues long after a war ends." -Julian Assange

    by Pierro Sraffa on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:54:19 PM PDT

  •  Eric Etch-A-Sketch strikes again (12+ / 0-)

    Romney Adviser: Women’s Health Issues Are ‘Shiny Objects’ That ‘Distract’ Voters

     Despite spending the GOP’s contested primary accusing President Obama for waging “an assault on religion,” flyering voters in Iowa with pamphlets that touted a “pro-life” agenda, and pledging to defund Planned Parenthood, Mitt Romney’s senior adviser Eric Fehrnstrom insisted that the general election should eschew social issues. Fehrnstrom also accused Democrats of using women’s reproductive health as “shiny objects” to avoid discussing the economy. “Mitt Romney is pro-life,” he told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on Sunday. “He’ll govern as a pro-life president, but you’re going to see the Democrats use all sorts of shiny objects to distract people’s attention from the Obama performance on the economy. This is not a social issue election.”

    Doctor Mitt Romney Brain Sturgeon-The Operation was a success but the patient died, where's my fee?

    by JML9999 on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 08:54:41 PM PDT

  •  The allure of austerity is overdetermined (10+ / 0-)

    That is, there are multiple reasons for why people subscribe to it. Some genuinely believe in it, whether on a sophisticated or simplistic level. Others support it for more ulterior motives, such as its effect on bond markets or as a back door way to cut government. The latter are fairly easy to spot and the only way to deal with them is to pull back the curtain and reveal them for the dishonest manipulators that they are, e.g. people like Romney or Boehner. They're opportunistic hacks and need to be dealt with as such, this era's Nixons and McCarthys.

    It's the true believers that are much harder to deal with, and really grasp. And even then, it's more the better-educated and sophisticated types who are hard to understand than the low-information Fox junkies who are just manipulated fools who read the dust jacket for a book by noted literature major turned depression era expert Amity Shlaes and think they're now economics experts too. Why do smart people subscribe to such empirically discredited theories as austerity when clearly the only historically proven way to deal with deep recessions is Keynesian stimulus spending? How could they be so out of touch with reality?

    I suspect that many if not most of them actually aren't, that they know that it's a crock, but publically endorse and persue it anyway because it's politically easier and safer and the way to be seen as a Very Serious Person in this era of glib Tom Friedmanesque fake high mindedness, where clever and deep-sounding sound bites that mean nothing pass for serious analysis and discourse. And most of these people are too cowardly and weak to be willing to reject this idiocy.

    This isn't the Silly Season. It's the Silly Era. And Paul Krugman is its Socrates.

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 09:17:46 PM PDT

    •  out of touch with reality (11+ / 0-)

      Comment by Krugman from the diary article:

      The death of Keynesianism was "triumphantly" announced, largely by Republican economists whose work had become "infected by partisanship and political orientation". Now, as they are faced with the catastrophic collapse of their theories, Krugman thinks political bias and professional pride are what's stopping them admitting they were wrong.

      Just Win, Baby. -- Al Rodgers, Feb. 24, 2012

      by OLinda on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 09:27:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Actually, not at all (6+ / 0-)

        After I posted the above comment I realized that I'd forgotten to add yet another likely reason (for some), which Krugman lays out here. That is, vanity, misplaced pride that dare not admit its mistakes. It's a particularly male failing.

        But like I said, it's overdetermined.

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 09:30:39 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Susie Madrak nails Amity Shlaes who is touted by.. (6+ / 0-)

        ..Glen Beck (video - cough) as the one with all the answers
        Crooks & Liars - Susie Madrak - February 01, 2009 04:00 PM

        In a piece called Amity Shlaes is A Right Wing Hack

        Amity shael : the new deal didn't work.. etc
        Then the boiler plate right wing garbage: "The Depression tells us that public works are probably less effective than improving the environment for entrepreneurs and new companies."

        Krugman convincingly explains that it did, and it's what we need today. Instantly if not sooner

        Susie Madrak warns:

        Don't write her off, or ignore the possible impact she may have on the stimulus package. After all, you know how people believe what they see on the teevee, and she's all over the place in our fair-and-balanced media.
        Paul Krugman was right about the stimulus package as was was Susie Madrak about the TV "fair & balanced" mistake that too many bought.

        It's a fun read

        •  Actual depression era economists (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JeffW, dkosdan, Eric Nelson, joe wobblie

          like Krugman and Romer say that government spending helped overcome the depression (whether in the New Deal proper or on WWII), while people who are neither economists nor historians say otherwise. Who ya gonna believe?

          Even alleged free market ideologues like Hayek and Friedman (and their ideological ancestors Smith and Burke) believed in government spending on infrastructure and public welfare. Today's actual free market ideologues are just lying and crazy hacks who have nothing better to do, in the employ of craven oligarchs who want to own everything. This is just the workings of the RW propaganda machine doing its thing. It's PR, nothing more.

          These are the real mad men (and women).

          "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

          by kovie on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 11:58:49 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  300 Mormons march in Utah Gay Pride Parade (8+ / 0-)

    CBS News June 3, 2012 9:31 PM
    300 Mormons march in Utah Gay Pride Parade

    More than 300 Mormon church members who are not gay drew shouts of approval and tears from spectators while marching in the Utah Gay Pride Parade in downtown Salt Lake City.

    The Mormons say they sought to send a message of love to Utah's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community by joining the annual parade Sunday. Their participation marked the first time such a large group of Mormons took part in the parade, organizers said.

    The Mormons, dressed in their Sunday best, included fathers carrying their children on their shoulders and mothers pushing strollers, The Salt Lake Tribune reported.

    Ref. link:
  •  Big belly flop (8+ / 0-)

    into bed. My Frenchie at me feet has gained full control now.

    Night all.

    Lot's to do Monday morning! Lot's to pay attention to.

    Wishing great things towards Wisconsin tonight.

    Score Card: Marriages won by me, 1. Marriages destroyed by me, 0.

    by Steven Payne on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 09:39:14 PM PDT

  •  Also Cassandra Was Killed With An Ax (0+ / 0-)

    Her gift of prophecy that nobody believed  was one of those famous curses.

    There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

    by bernardpliers on Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 10:43:11 PM PDT

  •  back to the subject at hand.... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Leo Flinnwood, Artandscience, dkosdan

    Obama's stimulus plan didn't work, because - metaphorically - he diagnosed a broken leg for a sprained ankle.  

    35 years of gutting the country of living wage, benefitted, permanent work - covered over by massive personal debt - created a massive economic sinkhole in the economy that was revealed by the collapse of the pyramid scheme of debt gouging, mortgage fraud and other financial shenanigans.

    So the problem was much deeper and far more structural than those who mistook it for a dip in the capitalist cycle.

    1. The economy has been restructured to privilege non-productive economic activity, no matter the source of the income. So the stimulus money flowed toward the financial markets, no matter who touched the money first.

    2. Several decades of deregulation, free trade, privatization, outsourcing, etc. etc. etc. has destroyed the very infrastructure of living wage, permanent work, including the government sector, making dependence on monopoly capital far more extreme. There is simply no incentive to invest in production or labor, when you can make more money by playing with it. So once the money gets inside the financial markets, it never comes back to the street.

    3. The high concentration of power in the hands of a few investment/banking/insurance companies, foolhardy deregulation (thank you larry summers, for the gift that keeps on giving) and the naturally criminal instincts of our sociopathic financial markets, led inevitably to the kinds of fraud that have crashed worldwide economies before. Any historian could see coming like a freight train, but - apparently - nobody responsible could see before they were deep in the doo-doo.  By rewarding them and sticking their victims with the check, we are simply made the concentration of economic power worse and made their victims more vulnerable.

    3. 30 years of loose debt, the shifting of government responsibilities to personal economies, the phenomenal rise in living costs, collapsing wages and right-stripping legislation - like Biden's 'bankruptcy reform' and unforgiveable student debt, lest most Americans very vulnerable to the criminal vagaries of those who dominate the economy.  Its a predator's paradise on Main St.

    4. These tensions masked the breaking link between wages and living costs.  Our woefully inadequate poverty and economic measures further masked the yawning gap between what it costs to survive in this society and the money coming into family households.  Cut off their access to debt, kill the jobs and most people are in major trouble.

    None of these things have been addressed or even recognized by this administration as the drivers of our economic depression. Indeed, they do not even acknowledge this crisis as a depression. Their prescription - more privatization, market-driven solutions, free trade (and the wars necessary to advance that idea), tax credits, incentives, etc. - compounds the problem and makes matters worse.

    By failing to reform the economic structures by which you move money through the economy; by exclusively filling your economic team with the very people responsible for creating these economic conditions and crashing the economy; by depending on the private sector to disseminate money thoughout the economy; the stimulus plan funding circulated very quickly into the Wall St drain, where it circulated furiously, but completely unproductively, or flew out of the country to cheaper labor markets.

    The money never reach the streets. The crisis grows dynamically worse. Living wages are a thing of the past and the guilty are left free to ravage their victims again, in a buyer's market.

    This administration's economic policies are like a doctor diagnosing a broken leg as a sprained foot and then prescribing remedies that will hobble the patient.

    •  Like The Metaphor (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      And the cost of a broken leg not healing correctly can linger for years

    •  We have nothing to fear, but austerity itself (0+ / 0-)

      Krugman's book, End This Depression Now, is a great read. The Feds need to print buckets of money to aid states in rehiring their civil servants, Krugman makes a strong case for doing that to end this depression as soon as possible. The benefits overwhelmingly out weigh our misplaced fears.

      To the credit of Obama's administration, not all the funds from the last stimulus went to financial markets, unless those suits don hardhats and build roads. There was considerable noise about the stringent financial reforms that went down after the dole you mentioned and some of that even made it out of fillibuster.

      "O you can't scare me, I'm sticking to the union" - Woody Guthrie from Union Maid

      by dkosdan on Mon Jun 04, 2012 at 10:27:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Say What? (0+ / 0-)
    President Obama is the only world leader who has attempted a Keynesian stimulus programme.
    The first sentence is utter rubbish!

    China for one has undertaken a bigger stimulus program than in the US. Canada undertook a stimulus program too.

    Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable. - JFK

    by taonow on Mon Jun 04, 2012 at 03:55:15 AM PDT

  •  I just read Krugman's book (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It's a short, but very clearly written manifesto. It should be at the President's bedside for the next couple of nights, if he hasn't read it already. And it should be followed.

    The best way for the President to reinforce that he is for the middle class is to campaign for its recommendations.  Yes, the hard sell is to explain why we need to take on even more debt in the short term. In actuality, this is needed because we made some big mistakes over the last few decades, following wrongheaded GOP economic religion, and allowing a rank incompetent, Bush Jr., to be president for 8 years. Big mistakes cannot be corrected without pain.

    So yes, we will have to pay it back, with interest as they say, although in a once more growing economy that is not so painful. We also must figure ways to grow the economy when the population is no longer rapidly growing - which is tougher, but with a little imagination, solutions are readily apparent. Technology, in medicine, in energy, and other areas, will play a vital role. In general, we will have to bring down our debt in the long run, which means some benefit cuts, and some tax increases. But if we stop digging the hole, we can do that in the least painful way possible, with everybody chipping in to lighten the load.

    Distilling this properly into a campaign platform is obviously very tricky. But it is what is sorely needed.

    "The only thing we have to fear - is fear itself." - Franklin Delano Roosevelt

    by orrg1 on Mon Jun 04, 2012 at 04:22:00 AM PDT

  •  About those clubs (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    "Krugman is not the most clubbable of fellows."


    Could there be a better proof that Krugman is right about why so many professional economists are getting it wrong, that it's because they belong to the same club as the 0.01%ers who benefit from the wrong answers?

    And could there be a better commentary on how they get away with it?  The media are shameless suck-ups to the club.  What possible relevance could Krugman's "clubbability" have to do with whether or not he's right about these tremendously important issues, other than as an excuse for the reporter to remind everyone that once we get past such trivial matters as the economy itself and what it is saying about who's right, we can get back to juding Krugman's ideas by what really matters, his acceptability to the club.

    We should have destroyed the presidency before Obama took office. Too late now.

    by gtomkins on Mon Jun 04, 2012 at 05:36:25 AM PDT

  •  Pretty simple really (0+ / 0-)

    Keynesian policies would have worked much better had real planning gone into the original stimulus bill and obstructionist GOP politics not gotten in the way.  Bad planning allowed the crooks of banking and wall street to get off scott free and the Tea Party had their way and still do.  That's why the US economy is still doing poorly!

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