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tracking polls this week, Obama up 4-5 points
Latest polls from pollster.com
Paul Krugman:
Should [Democrats] have tried to push through a major new economic program during that narrow window [when they briefly had 60 Senate votes]? In retrospect, yes — but that doesn’t change the reality that for most of Mr. Obama’s time in office U.S. fiscal policy has been defined not by the president’s plans but by Republican stonewalling.

The most important consequence of that stonewalling, I’d argue, has been the failure to extend much-needed aid to state and local governments. Lacking that aid, these governments have been forced to lay off hundreds of thousands of schoolteachers and other workers, and those layoffs are a major reason the job numbers have been disappointing. Since bottoming out a year after Mr. Obama took office, private-sector employment has risen by 4.6 million; but government employment, which normally rises more or less in line with population growth, has instead fallen by 571,000.

Thomas B. Edsall wonders why Team Obama and the Democrats haven't capitalized on the key vote-killer in their opponents' playbook:
What people have not been talking about enough is that the Ryan budget contains an $897 billion sinkhole: massive but unexplained cuts in such discretionary domestic programs as education, food and drug inspection, workplace safety, environmental protection and law enforcement.

The scope of the cuts—stunning in their breadth—is hidden.

Jeffrey Sachs, one-time economic "shock therapist" says both the Republicans and Democrats got it wrong on the economy:
The scary truth is that Obama's budget plans call for a continuing cut of civilian government programs relative to GDP through 2021. If Romney is elected, taxes will be gutted further, so that spending cuts will be far deeper, enough to cripple the economy and create massive social unrest.

A true recovery should be investment led rather than consumption led. We need long-term investments in human capital (skills) and in key infrastructure such as low-carbon energy systems, smart grids for cities, cutting-edge information and management systems for low-cost integrated healthcare delivery, and inter-city fast rail. These investments are inevitably a mix of private investments and public investments, with the mix differing according to the sector in question.

Joe Firestone:
Just saw John Sununu, one of Republicans' favorite Bushie junk yard attack dogs all up in arms about the debt subject to the limit (the so-called national debt) reaching $16 Trillion dollars, and going on to tell people that every man, woman, and child in the United States now owes $50,000 to pay that debt off. Now, I’m here to tell you that all that is bull shit.
Eliot Spitzer says he was left a bit empty by President Obama's end-of-convention speech in Charlotte because there was no specific economic plan despite the still battered economy:
The singular success of the Obama administration on the economic front was the auto bailout and accompanying reform package. The lesson from it should be that bold investments can pay off: The political courage to go big will get the president re-elected, and saved an entire sector of our economy.  

We need more of those grand bets, not fewer. The crisis of 2008 may have been stopped, but the trends of declining middle-class incomes and a shrinking workforce have not.

Mark Hertsgaard was glad to hear President Obama use the "C" word at the Democratic convention, "climate change," that is:
“It is nothing short of terrifying to imagine a party that openly mocks climate change taking back the White House,” the Obama campaign fired back via email. True enough. But the president’s own statements, before last night, have not been terribly reassuring either, if only because there have been so few of them. Ever since his cap-and-trade legislation crashed and burned under intense Republican fire in 2010, Obama has avoided the term climate change in public.

So does his convention speech signal that Obama will now champion the climate fight? Or was he merely punching back at Romney and telling the Democratic base what they wanted to hear?

Michael Moore explains why two words, "President Romney" should scare everyone into action this election:
Trust me, if [Republicans] believed that America was a right-wing country they'd be passing laws making it so easy to vote you could do it in the checkout line at Walmart.

But the voting on November 6th will not take place at Walmart or on any potato's couch. It can only happen by going to a polling place — and, not to state the obvious, the side that gets the most people physically out to the polls that day, wins. We know the Republicans are spending tens of millions of dollars to make sure this very thing happens. They have built a colossal get-out-the-vote machine for election day, and the sheer force of their tsunami of hate stands ready to overwhelm us like nothing we've ever seen before. Those of us in the Midwest got a taste of it in 2008. Traditionally Democratic states — all of which voted for Obama — saw our state legislatures and governor seats hijacked by this well-oiled machine. We didn't know what hit us, but these new Republicans wasted no time in dismantling some of the very basic thing we hold dear. Wisconsin fought back — but even that huge grassroots uprising was not enough to stop the governor bought and paid for by the Koch brothers. It was a wake up call, for sure — but have we really woken up?

Mitt Megaphone Jennifer Rubin says the Democratic Convention was "nothing else but the interest group beg-a-thon."

E.J. Dionne sees the advantage out of both party conventions to Barack Obama:

Still, money does buy Romney additional options. The Republicans will have extra dollars to use in trying to make states currently solid or leaning to Obama — Wisconsin, and perhaps Michigan — more competitive. Obama can’t afford to be sucked into contests in states he should be able to count on.
Jonathan Zimmerman may be unaware that the GOP's presidential candidate can change his mind from one bite of lunch to the next:
Mitt Romney has put forth a [voucher] plan that could completely transform the way Americans organize and fund public schools. And that's why it has little chance of being implemented any time soon. [...]

For the first time, a major political candidate has suggested that kids in a poor public school district should be allowed to enroll in a wealthier one.

That would represent real and fundamental change, of a kind that we've never seen.

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Comment Preferences

  •   The dangers of Romney getting specific on taxes (13+ / 0-)

    considering likely "loopholes" to be closed and political effects in this post to which I invite your attention

    "We didn't set out to save the world; we set out to wonder how other people are doing and to reflect on how our actions affect other people's hearts." - Pema Chodron

    by teacherken on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 04:42:46 AM PDT

  •  School Vouchers (10+ / 0-)

    I am not familiar with Romney's school voucher plan, but school vouchers, aka, 'student choice,' is not new.  There was a big push by the right wing and Catholic schools in the 1980's to implement vouchers.  The districts that implemented it found that students were being transferred to schools that were closer to a parent's place of employment.

    Vouchers are all but useless in rural areas.  The main targets are urban schools.  Why am I not surprised?

    Don't look back, something may be gaining on you. - L. "Satchel" Paige

    by arlene on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 04:44:29 AM PDT

    •  I went to Catholic school (4+ / 0-)

      Every year, without fail, there would be a big push for everybody's parents to write or call their delegates and state senators to push for school vouchers. It never worked.

    •  Public schools have been allowing choice (17+ / 0-)

      across the country for years, starting in MN.   Our districts in CO where I used to teach had choice.  A window is opened and all parents can apply for whatever school they want.

      Here's the problem.  This does not help any of the really poor and disenfranchised families.  No transportation is provided.  Thus the family has to get the child to the school.  This alone limits the opportunity for families who use public transportation/have no car.   Often the child is resistant to go to a school with all strangers.  Research over and over tell us that neighborhood schools are best for children.   One year some right wing "benefactor" offered scholarships to our families (we were in the school where the eligibility for free/reduced lunch was over 85%, highest in the district) to any school public or private.  Five families took him up on his deal (to show us all how private/charter schools were better).   After one year all five families returned to the school, two halfway thru the year and one was a total disaster ( a boy who, despite living across the street from our school, had an attendance problem...why anyone thought Mom would be getting him halfway across town is a mystery).

       This simplistic mentality that there is a magic formula at a magic school to "fix" the problems in urban schools where funding is pathetic, where poverty is an issue, where valuing education is not the norm, has been tried and has failed over and over and over.  

      Our school had some fine families, poor but they valued education and they taught their children to value education.    Those children did well.  They succeeded despite the odds against them.   And what happened to our successes.  More often than not, they moved before their kids made it through elementary.  This pattern is repeated all over the country.  Vouchers are not the answer.  The problem is not bad schools, bad teachers, bad parents.......the problem is poverty and the abandoning of neighborhoods.   Our  school was lower middle class when it opened.  As the years went by, and the economy suffered,  stores moved out of the neighbor hood.  At one time there was a Kmart, a grocery story, a garage, a few restaurants.   Houses were modest but nice.  It was an integrated neighborhood.   There were decent apartments.  THEN, in the 80s things started going downhill.   By the 90s, our city had its own GROVER Nordquist type move to the area and pushed successfully to get the TABOR amendment passed.  A city already collected very little in taxes, a city that had not passed a mill levy for education in 25 years, lost even more revenue for anything like schools, low income housing, etc etc.   People were unable to keep houses, pay rent etc.   As the neighborhood got more  and more boarded up houses, crime went up, property values went down.  The apartment buildings were bought by this same a**hat that worked to get taxes limited and his buildings became rat invested h*ll holes.  Kmart closed its store, the grocery chain left and .......well, you know the rest.

      And then of course the tax hating right blamed the families that they put on to the streets, blamed the teachers who saw their school falling apart, leaking roof, crack tiles....

      Then in comes the "privatization" jerks who see dollar signs on the heads of poor children, telling those parents that "they", not the government schools can "fix" their kids.

      Still here we go again with people buying into this same scenario.

      “Fear of serious injury cannot alone justify suppression of free speech and assembly. Men feared witches and burned women. It is the function of speech to free men from the bondage of irrational fears.”–Louis Dembitz Brandeis

      by Jjc2006 on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 05:09:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Excellent, detailed reply. (7+ / 0-)

        Another factor is the desire to remove children from public schools so that their minds won't be contaminated by the variety of religious and political beliefs held by other students and their families.

        Our small, rural Colorado community has a lot of students that are being home schooled or taught in a religious school that maintains their family's narrow view of the world.  Life isn't going to be easy for these kids when they get out into the larger world and find they don't fit in.  Also, removing these students from our public schools reduces the state funding available for those who remain.

    •  All but useless everywhere (4+ / 0-)

      Does he think we're sitting around with empty school buildings in the wealthier communities?  Our schools are bursting at the seams.

      In addition to not having space, we have a Choice program in my state, but it means that poorer school districts lose money whenever a student leaves and the money goes to the wealthier community.   The wealthier communities refuse to buy into a program that takes money from poorer urban schools.  

    •  Closer to a parent's place of employment... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wintergreen8694, Amber6541, askew

      interesting.

      So what is bad about that?

      The whole neighborhood school idea -- the importance of which was deprecated at the federal level back in the 60s -- grew from a very different era and very different ways of living.

      Neighborhoods today tend not to be what they were.  You might be OK with that. You might think it's terrible.  Either way, it simply is.

      Long commutes are tough on parents and children alike.

      I remember working in downtown Chicago and being helpless when a daughter go hurt at school.  I commuted on the train, and the next available train would get me to her school two hours after I got the call.

      For that matter, I wonder how many parents wouldn't like to ride along with their children and learn about their school day as opposed to leaving them in day care?

      LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

      by dinotrac on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 05:18:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Bad enough that parents commute, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        One Opinion

        but children spending several hours a day in a car or bus is contrary to all notions of providing a healthy childhood with plenty of exercise, free time to play with neighborhood children or pursue sports, hobbies or music.  I believe quality day care or cooperative child care with neighbors/friends is preferable to 2 hours per day strapped into a car seat.

        Children in our neighborhood (not a terribly close knit one) who commuted to expensive private schools were strangers in their own communities.  Their only friends were scattered across a large metropolitan area.  No sense of community identity whatsoever.

        •  Except that the kids wouldn't be out in healthy (0+ / 0-)

          childhood play with their neighborhood buds.  They'd be at daycare, and that's a different thing.  Nicer than riding in a car, not as nice as running around the neighborhood, playing ball, etc.

          And -- there's a definite trade-off.

          Parent-child interactions ARE important -- and something to be decided by the people closest to the situation.  That would be the parents.

          LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

          by dinotrac on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 07:23:25 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  One things that's wrong with that (0+ / 0-)

        is that businesses where the majority of people work are clustered together in certain areas of cities.  If everyone who worked in those areas wanted their children in a school near their place of employment, you would have the problem of trying to fit mega-schools into areas that have neither the space to build such schools or the infrastructure to handle thousands more people occupying those areas during school hours and causing traffic jams around the schools in the mornings during rush hour.

        And what happens to those children when it's time for them to go home, but the parents still have two or three or more hours to work?  I doubt employers would be sympathetic to having their workers take off for an hour or two to pick up their kids and take them home - or let them roam around a business district until the workday is done.

        Children being enrolled in neighborhood schools may be inconvenient in some ways, but that's why most school districts have school buses that pick up students from all across their districts and deliver them to school and then back home.  Having kids in school - particularly kids of different ages in different schools - is going to be inconvenient for both parents and school districts no matter what is done.

        "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

        by SueDe on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 06:54:03 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  That may be true in some areas, but oversimplifies (0+ / 0-)

          the situation.

          For example,  I live about 35-40 miles west of Chicago.

          My worst commute has been to Chicago by train, then another 20 minutes by foot for a total of about 105 minutes each way, not considering the time allowed to make sure I wasn't trying to slip through doors as they were closing, or miss the train because of a traffic light.

          My second-worst commute was similar in distance and time, but was much better because I could drive it.  The train had a major advantage in that I could read, sleep, etc on the train, but...
          with my car, I could leave at any time.  Better still, mid-day commutes shrank to about an hour without traffic, while mid-day train rides grew about 10 minutes longer without express trains.

          In either case, I could have chosen an intermediate location to enroll my daughter(s).  We would have had some extra alone time to talk about the day and bond, but they wouldn't have had to deal with the same commute that I did.

          It's one of the things that car-pooling advaocates missed: people adjust their day to cope with long commutes.  They stop by the dry-cleaners or grocery store on the way home, etc.

          We never had to do that, though.  My wife was able to find work nearer our home, and my commute mattered only on those occasions when she was unavailable.

          Still -- I can understand parents who want to order their lives and take care of their children.

          LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

          by dinotrac on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 07:34:15 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  How many wealthy schools will have (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      happymisanthropy

      available places?  And how will children find adequate transportation to and from these schools?  

      Free, local neighborhood, quality public education is the foundation of our democracy and provides the melting pot that allows an extremely diverse population to live and work together in relative peace.

      Many of today's high quality jobs are in the tech and biotech industries.  Our adult children are so employed.  Their fellow employees are a veritable United Nations.  Hiring and retention are based on merit. No one gives a rat's behind about gender, skin color, religion, sexual orientation, native language, country of origin, etc.  Anyone who cannot cope with this kind of work environment is going to be left behind.  More so with every passing day.

  •  Mitt took back some health care goodies he put on (17+ / 0-)

    the table yesterday morning. Pre-exsisting condition
    denials are back on the table though. Mitt sets out a nice dinner spread for the hungry masses but then they find out that the shrimp cocktail and mashed potatoes and spare ribs are all made out of Lucite and are glued to the plates.

    Mitt is such a kidder!

  •  Mitt Romney's inability to keep (13+ / 0-)

    to a position has to be as tiring to his party as it is to ours. The man stands for nothing except how to fill his personal vaults.

    However, even with his moving target positions (which is a target too) there is plenty to go after him on based on policy and his personal trustworthiness. He is simply unfit to occupy the White House.

    The Spice must Flow!

    by Texdude50 on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 04:47:11 AM PDT

    •  The Titular Head of the GOP.....you betcha!! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JML9999, Texdude50, happymisanthropy
    •  All I can guess (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JML9999, Texdude50, skohayes, Amber6541

      Is that they think the only way to win is to shift opinion on the question of him favoring the rich over ordinary people. Why think think the lightening rod of healthcare is the issue to do this on, I dont know. It's a huge gamble for the Romney campaign for him to say there are things in Obamacare he likes and wants to keeps. The GOP base wants the whole thing gone on day one. Not some sort of reverse sausage making to keep the good parts and throw out the bad. To them, it is all bad.

      At the same time, the day before, he is appear with Pat Robertson and insinuating that Obama is a godless liberal that will efface every mention of God from the American public sphere.

      The fact that they can't seem to decide on whether to go for a full on base strategy or try to pivot to some semblance of the middle (although less than 2 months from election day is not the time to be attempting that feat) shows that the campaign is falling apart around Romney. Before long, we'll have surrogates going rogue

      •  I think Romney believes that (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Amber6541

        the GOP base doesn't watch Sunday morning talk shows, so he's free to weasel his stands in those appearances as long as he goes to Fox to "explain" how he was misinterpreted by the nasty liberals on network TV.

        The situation with Romney's candidacy is that very few people will actually vote for him; I think he knows that and is actually counting on it.  He has to understand that most of the votes cast for the GOP will not be for him but against Obama.

        "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

        by SueDe on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 07:03:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  OFA Concord, NC (14+ / 0-)

    I go there as much as possible to enter data

    2012-09-01_21-57-12_518 Richard, Max & Victoria

    Max now runs Stanley county

    Last Night they had a meeting of Concord, Stanley & Rowan counties. the room filled with young energinic people. I didn't think to get a picture. These people are all nerds ! they have ever kind of divise it takes to communicate. They took over the room & got to work to get the days numbers in !

    I was amazed at the energy!
    Barack will win because of the staff he has put together !

    Go
    Obama
    Biden
    & your TEAM !

  •  Republicans Invent School Bussing (9+ / 0-)

    Jonathan Zimmerman:

    For the first time, a major political candidate has suggested that kids in a poor public school district should be allowed to enroll in a wealthier one.

    Hooray! Republicans have finally invented the bussing from, say, a Black ghetto to a rich White neighborhood's public schools. I'm certain that RMoney will keep this promise, and that the overwhelmingly White constituency that elects him will be grateful. Why didn't Democrats ever think of this, say in the 1960s when they did?

    Oh, and

    President Obama's education policies do nothing to address this basic disparity; indeed, they don't even mention it. To Obama's credit, his stimulus package included nearly $100 billion in aid to education. Since then, the White House says, the stimulus has created or saved 300,000 jobs for teachers, principals and other school employees.

    Yes, the policy of giving a tenth of a $TRILLION to schools, spent more on poorer ones, did nothing to address the basic disparity that poorer schools have less money. Except give them more money.

    Jonathan Zimmerman evidently learned everything he knows at a RMoney school.

    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

    by DocGonzo on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 04:50:17 AM PDT

    •  Well they saw how well it worked in trying (2+ / 0-)

      to kill the ACA and to build fake enthusiasm for their campaign stops.

      The 1st Amendment gives you the right to say stupid things, the 1st Amendment doesn't guarantee a paycheck to say stupid things.

      by JML9999 on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 05:04:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  No bussing included (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Amber6541

      Of course kids will have the opportunity to apply to the wealthier schools, but those schools don't run bus routes. You get there on your own or you don't get there.

      “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

      by skohayes on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 06:49:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The Boys are back in town.......Support your local (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tb mare

    Congress......the hardest working guys in show business.

  •  In Retrospect (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Inameli, arlene, wintergreen8694, askew

    Going back and looking at what was actually said at the DNC last week makes one thing very clear: the Dems laid out the most liberal governing agenda that they have presented since Michael Dukakis.  1992 and 2004 were, to me, particular lowlights in terms of Democratic policy stance - "Bush Lite," on both accounts, is the phrase that comes to mind.  

    But in a year of the GOP running further to the right than ever the Dems have decided to deploy the tactic of offering some - DUN DUN DUN - actual contrast.  

    If ("when") Obama is re-elected he's going to have a poweful mandate.  Times are still tough and the GOP threw everything they had at him (at least in terms of money and tired ideology.)  

    Does this convention rhetoric serve as an actual roadmap for how that mandate will be used?  Or is it just red meat to fire up the base?  

    No one can terrorize a whole nation, unless we are all his accomplices. - Edward R. Murrow

    by CrazyHorse on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 04:59:57 AM PDT

    •  Liberal compared to the RNC (0+ / 0-)

      Pretty ordinary during ordinary times.

      •  Ordinary Times? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        belle1

        But when are "ordinary times" these days?  Because you have to be talking about pre-1980.  And I'm 38 years old - so "ordinary times" are a pretty distant memory for me.  I've spent my entire political career since supporting Jerry Brown in 1992 trying to drag the Democractic Party back toward the left.  And this is the furtherest left we've been - with an actual chance of winning - in my lifetime.  

        So the whole notion of "ordinary times" is fairly obsolete in this context.  

        No one can terrorize a whole nation, unless we are all his accomplices. - Edward R. Murrow

        by CrazyHorse on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 05:25:00 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Ordinary times are pre Tea Party days (0+ / 0-)

          The TP has hijacked the Republican Party and its very weak leaders don't know how to deal with them.  Their only solution is to drag the whole party to a very fringy right.  

    •  I hope that mandate that Obama will have (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      happymisanthropy

      after the election will not encourage him and the Democrats in congress to immediately go after deficit reduction.  The Dem's are still playing the Republicans' game of scaring the bejesus out of the public about the deficit and long-term debt and are willing to go after entitlements to satisfy that objective.

      "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

      by SueDe on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 07:07:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Like voter ID (6+ / 0-)

    School choice seems like a great idea on the surface. Why should I be able to send my kids to the best school in town just because we live a block over the line? Why shouldn't I get help to send my kids to Catholic school while I'm paying into the public school system that?

    But then you look under the hood and see that the primary impetus for vouchers is to get white kids out away from black kids or to starve the public school system of needed funding by handing it over to charter schools or churches.

  •  Will no one in (8+ / 0-)

    the media ask Romney just how people with pre-existing conditions are going to get and keep access to health care?  Just one teensy follow up question?  Just one??

    Justice For Will Will spent his brief, courageous life fighting for the rights we all take for granted. Please share his story to support the fight!

    by KibbutzAmiad on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 05:06:19 AM PDT

  •  I don't think that even Mitt Romney knows where (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JML9999, skillet, skohayes, askew

    he stands on any issue.  He has had multiple positions on every single subject from job creation, to taxes, to health care, to Medicare, to Afghanistan, etc.

    Romney's lack of saying anything worthwhile may be a big turn off to swing voters because they unlike partisans on both sides want to know specifics.

    President Obama, January 9, 2012: "Change is hard, but it is possible. I've Seen it. I've Lived it."

    by Drdemocrat on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 05:06:50 AM PDT

  •  Krugman is such a BS master, and it's a shame (0+ / 0-)

    because he doesn't need to be.  The man is smart, writes well, and generally takes intelligent (defensible at the very least) positions.

    I'd have stopped reading him years ago if the signal to noise ratio weren't sufficient to justify the effort.

    Two examples here -- although one would be defensible if he were consistent:

    1.  The oh-so-sneaky bit about public jobs lost -- 571,000 lost while private sector jobs are rising even though both generally travel together.

    Except that they didn't travel together in the economic crash.
    Private sector workers were axed with abandon while public sector workers held their jobs. And...the so-called stimulus package at the beginning of the President's term?  It was a money pipeline to public sector workers.

    It is fair to question the drop in public sector employment.  Does it make sense? It is a sign of bad policy?  But to imply that  public sector workers were batter right along with private sector workers and then have been targetted again?
    Pure bullshit.

    2.  The "jobs created since the economy bottomed out".  This is a valid point to make, but I seem to recall Bush was always measured from  beginning of term to end of term, as if those were economically significant markers.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 05:12:31 AM PDT

    •  There is a reason public sector workers (5+ / 0-)

      were able to hold on longer. If private sector workers had unions that could stand up for them, they may have been able to fight back and slow the bleeding.

      And I don't recall an organized campaign to demonize public service and public workers as somehow being less deserving of their jobs than private sector workers. Were you used a political pawn the way I and hundreds of thousands of other hardworking public employees have been? Has your work being totally devalued just because your check is signed by the treasury instead of the CFO?

      Thanks for the right wing talking points on the evils of the public sector.

      •  Private sector unions might have made a difference (0+ / 0-)

        in terms of easing the pain, but we were in a real and serious economic decline.

        Unions can soften the blow, but their biggest threat -- withholding labor and making it impossible to conduct business as usual -- has a lot less power when employers want to shed labor and deviate from conducting business as usual.

        Unions are at their most powerful when there is money to be made and getting those union workers back on the job is the way to make it.

        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

        by dinotrac on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 07:18:42 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  The reason public sector workers (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        dinotrac

        were able to hold on longer is because of the stimulus.  That program sent billions of dollars to the states who then used the funds to keep from laying off teachers, firefighters, police officers, state and county workers.  When the money pipeline from the federal government ran dry, states had no choice than to cut public workers.

        And Bush hasn't ever been held accountable for the economy from his first day in office - otherwise he would have been credited with at least part of the surplus he inherited.  His reckoning didn't begin until his congress passed the 2001 budget and the first of his two tax cut bills.

        "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

        by SueDe on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 07:41:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  and? (0+ / 0-)
      2.  The "jobs created since the economy bottomed out".  This is a valid point to make, but I seem to recall Bush was always measured from  beginning of term to end of term, as if those were economically significant markers.
      If we measured Bush's economy from trough to trough, instead of by calendar years, his record would be that much worse, because the depression that started in December of 2007 was much worse than the recession that started in February of 2001.
      It is fair to question the drop in public sector employment.  Does it make sense? It is a sign of bad policy?  But to imply that  public sector workers were batter right along with private sector workers and then have been targetted again?
      Pure bullshit.
      Pitting private sector workers against public sector workers is a right-wing obsession.  That's not where Krugman was going at all, so why do you need to go there?

      I just genetically engineer them, I don't nominate them for President.

      by happymisanthropy on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 10:45:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Read the Krugman piece for comprehension. (0+ / 0-)

        Your question will be answered.

        PS - i wasn't pitting anybody against anybody.  Stubbornly refusing to see the words in front of their faces is a left-wing obsession.

        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

        by dinotrac on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 11:04:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Oh, and you're also totally full of shit. (0+ / 0-)

      There was no point in the recession where the share of total employment held by public sector workers was greater than it was in December 2007 when the recession began.

      So no, there was never a point where

      Private sector workers were axed with abandon while public sector workers held their jobs.
      was true, or else the share of jobs held by public sector workers would have gone up.  It didn't.

      I just genetically engineer them, I don't nominate them for President.

      by happymisanthropy on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 10:54:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Romney + Ryan + Norquest = Morgenthau Plan for US (3+ / 0-)

    The Morgenthau Plan was a proposal at the end of WW2 to de-industrialize Germany.

    The plans of Romney / Ryan / Norquist would end the unique government / private sector cooperation that has existed in the US since the Civil War to create the greatest economic power know to man.

    The plans (all really developed by the Nawab of the GOP, Grover Norquist) would effectively turn the US into a granary for China and the Middle East and a source of natural resources for the factories of China, Korea, and Japan.

    It was the government that built the railroads. It was the government that built the telegraph lines. It was the government that built the airline industry. It was the government that built the computer industry.

    We had genius inventors, to be sure. We had genius industrialists, to be sure.  But all those industries were massively aided and/or directly subsidized by the US government in their infancy.

    People in SC crow about getting Boeing to set up a plant in their state. Boeing would not exist if not for the federal government.

    The entire nation will be like Alabama, grovelling before foreign companies like Mercedes or Airbus to locate a minor assembly plant.

    This nation shed the blood of hundreds of thousands in the 1860s to allow the federal government play a key  role in the nation's economy.

    We shouldn't let that blood be shed in vain to implement the fantasies of atheist, Randian philosophy

  •  School Vouchers (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wintergreen8694, skohayes, Amber6541

    sound good when you say it really fast.  When you actually try and figure out the transportation costs, it quickly becomes amazingly expensive.  And you find that simply moving kids around doesn't lead to better individual outcomes.  This is because the thing that was holding back the under-performing school, more often than not... was the students.

    If you actually swapped just the complete populations of the high performing school with the low performing school, the performance would follow.

    The raw material (the students) from economically disadvantaged areas is not as good as the raw material (the students) from advantaged areas.  There are a lot of factors that play into that...

    1. Parental Involvement
    2. How education is valued at home.
    3. Availability of books.
    4. Nutrition.
    5. Insistence on Educational Performance.
    6. Stability at home.

    Moving kids around doesn't cure these things.  It just hides them in the statistical noise.

  •  Far be it from me... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes, tb mare

    ...to differ with Paul Krugman.  But:

    *the combination of the stimulus bill, the ACA, and the auto bailout IS a major economics package

    * the Democratic party is not monolithic. A larger stimulus bill would required support from the likes of Ben Nelson and Holy Joe Lieberman. That wasn't going to happen

    * Many Senate and House Democrats have resisted aid to states because they don't want to help Republican governors politically.

    We should quit fighting with ourselves over a past that happened in the context of a political reality that progressives often seem bent on denying. Denying reality is conservative turf, not ours.

    "I want real loyalty. I want someone who will kiss my ass in Macy's window, and say it smells like roses." Lyndon Johnson

    by pkgoode on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 05:34:32 AM PDT

  •  raising taxes on the rich IS an econ plan, Eliot! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happymisanthropy

    wow, i wonder what it will really do to the economy...it will be a thing of beauty!
    maybe more donations to the arts?  wishing, wishing...

    Romney/Ryan: I can't. I just can't.

    by stagemom on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 06:34:06 AM PDT

    •  AND i wish the surrogates from the convention (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tb mare, Amber6541, Eric Nelson

      would travel all over the country, not just to the states in play, to shore up the vote for the down-ticket races!  Those of us in Cali, etc, want a bit more love for being so true-blue, other than the empty hand routine...what i'd do to have lily led, john lewis, deval patrick, jennifer granholm, bill clinton, et al come by my little neck of the woods.

      Keep the Blue States Blue Forever!
      that should be the slogan of the DNC

      Romney/Ryan: I can't. I just can't.

      by stagemom on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 06:38:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Jeffrey Sachs is wrong (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happymisanthropy

    about structural unemployment (unemployment caused by a lack of marketable skills), while all of a sudden agreeing that massive infrastructure projects should be funded now.  I'm beginning to wonder if the talking heads are suffering from the same flip-flop syndrome as the Republican candidates (although the smart ones are better at hiding it).

    Brad DeLong took on Sach's prescriptions for economic progress a couple days ago on his blog.

    "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

    by SueDe on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 06:36:51 AM PDT

  •  Spitzer is right about what the Obama agenda (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happymisanthropy

    should be re the economy. He's wrong that the President should have spelled it out at the convention. Even though the remedy is correct, you can't win the election by telling the American public the truth that we need to spend more. I just hope that we win enough down ticket races to be able to dispense the castor oil that is needed.

  •  Now THAT's a great title (0+ / 0-)

    for an APR...

    ;-)

    Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

    by a gilas girl on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 11:32:56 AM PDT

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