Oh your temerity has turned into outright hilarity, so I can no longer give this kind nonsense any charity. You see, these are issues I go to great lengths to cover for the Daily Kos community. Most people know this despite any disagreements they may have with my work, so commentators in denial have no real immunity; they also won't work.
When it comes to the economy, there are certain undeniable facts that have to be acknowledged whether one is a Post Keynesian MMT proponent such as I or not. As a starting point, we should all unanimously agree that proud feigned ignorance is not a commodity. I mean, that is, if we are any different than anyone on red state or the corporate owned media. I like to think we are.
However, proud ignorance of Democratic austerity and economic theory is sadly what we see as we did in the comments of my last diary. That doesn't mean everyone has to agree with my POV on economics, but it does mean they have to source their rebuttals when attempting to deny the data I laid out. I laid out the solid facts in my last diary over and over, and again in the comment section. It was a rather embarrassing display for this site having to see some in the comments section who still refuse to read sourced graphs and data from the Congressional Budget Office and the White House's own Office of Management and Budget.
Not only that, they seem to be proud of it while claiming they won something by staying ignorant of the data and facts in front of their face. Funny that, and sad. You will find this to be undeniably true below.
That picture above is especially apt here. As I have recently written before, along with the sequester, there will actually be undoubtedly 1.5 trillion of austerity recommended by the cat food commission. You remember Bowles Simpson, right? This is the same commission some people here screeched loudly about how "it didn't exist." Guess what? Its recommendations go into effect now (2013) and every year until the start of 2023. This is true whether someone wants to close their eyes and ears and go "LA! LA! LA! I can't hear you!" or not.
Denying the Data Today Won't Make President Obama's Austerity Go Away
The same facts were put forth by economist Jared Bernstein who used to work for VP Joe Biden and is now a senior fellow at the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities. As a Post Keynesian MMT proponent, I don't have the same outlook on economics, to say the least, as the CBPP on a number of things, especially on public debt and deficits. However, there's no reason to doubt the data in this paper from Richard Kogan; it is clearly well sourced from the CBO and the President's own Office of Management and Budget analyzing the Budget Control Act of 2011 signed into law by the President.
CONGRESS HAS CUT DISCRETIONARY FUNDING BY $1.5 TRILLION OVER TEN YEARS: First Stage of Deficit Reduction Is In Law
This proves without a shadow of a doubt that anyone who shows up in every thread and types that "cuts only happen in the future" must not be very intellectually curious. After all, as most can see with thier own eyes, the 70% of recommended cuts from Bowles Simpson going into effect this year, the year 2013, occurring every single year until the start of fiscal year 2023 accumulating up to 1.5 trillion in real cuts. These are the indisputable facts.
So let's be adult here and that means acknowledging reality. Most people with proper cognitive function got this, but others continually celebrated their delusional denial despite the clear easy to read data, some even declaring victory over it. Yeah, as if staying uninformed helps anyone in society. It doesn't.
There is now even more confirmation that everything I laid out in my last couple of diaries is 100% correct. So much, in fact, that to deny it at this point is to celebrate a kind of proud anti intellectualism; a sense that one doesn't have to identify or acknowledge numbers with percentages, their corresponding years, and the corresponding sources all easy to read. When anyone tries to point this out while trying to appeal to everyone's basic logic(if it exists), they are attacked like the logical idea of citing data itself.
This happens to myself from time to time. It's sad, because by saying that, "all I do is cut and paste" because I read data from academic papers and sources, link to them, and show relevant portions of them to support my arguments, most people, and specifically in the academic world, can see it's merely just a rather desperate attempt to turn ignorance into relevance for the public eye. It doesn't always work, though. It's like trying to be the loudest kid on the playground when recess is over when he or she should be inside studying this stuff along with everyone else who makes citations.
Sourcing really matters like it does for research papers using MLA format in college. It makes you wonder just how uneducated people are that use terms derisively like "cut and paste" to attack sourced arguments. We've seen these kinds of anti intellectual arguments before in 2004 from the Bush administration when they were looking to squash dissent of the Iraq war on TV and online.
Is that what we want to allow here at Daily Kos? I hope not. The diarist who posts substance to back up his or her points is arguing in good faith. There is no equivalence of those that do to those that don't. Period.
There has to be substance cited to back up a POV. I call anyone who denies the decade long cumulative cuts in effect every year(2013-2022) from the Budget Control Act of 2011, ignorant and proud of it, because they claimed this super austerity budget was only a normal budget for only a year! It was easy for most people to see this was embarrassingly wrong. However, some people rec absolute nonsense like that so it dumbs down the entire Daily Kos community, and it's dangerous.
It comes down to what versus who are you going to believe? Your lying eyes that can see the data I continually lay out or what some ignorant commentator said hoping to defend whatever his favorite politician does? This is what I like to call endgame so we can end their childish games of hero worship. FACT: The Democratic Senators on the Senate Budget Committee who wrote the damn Budget Control Act of 2011 confirm everything I just said! Ouch.
The Senate Budget Committee confirms exactly what I laid out regarding the 2011 Budget Control Act.
(Prepared by Majority Staff, Senate Budget Committee)
The Budget Control Act achieved all of the essential elements of a traditional budget – setting discretionary caps, providing enforcement mechanisms, and creating a process for addressing entitlement spending and revenues.
In many ways, the Budget Control Act was even more extensive than a traditional budget:
- It has the force of law, unlike a budget resolution that is not signed by the President.
- It set discretionary caps for 10 years, instead of the one year normally set in a budget resolution.
Bragging about this austerity certainly wasn't a good thing, but this is proof that if anyone denies that there were these very real 10 year cuts I laid out in effect, they are just wallowing in their own proud ignorance. After all, I wrote multiple diaries explaining all of this to them in detail. It gets frustrating, because propagandists do work hard to peddle their partisan third way delusions to the masses to combat reality. I'll give them that.
It's just too bad for them the facts are easy to read and show this wasn't a normal budget for one fiscal year as some continually tried to claim with no substance at all. This was a super austerity budget with the exact cuts I cited in that chart from my last diary that happen every year for 10 years staring now which includes the White House's sequester they put out there to be added to this austerity. It gets annoying when the kind of troll like behavior that derails a diary while loudly and abruptly denying these confirmed sourced facts is allowed.
It basically subverts the discourse for bloggers everywhere. It confuses people who genuinely want to learn and robs them of knowledge to allow this. They probably want to know why we are in a jobs crisis and why they are suffering from the sequester along with the austerity implemented from Bowles Simpson in the Budget Control Act for ten years.
When people proud of ignoring facts and cheering politicians are coddled it hurts working people even more. After all, people need to know that even the White House friendly Center for American Progress confirms what I laid out as well while showing there has been even more austerity than that 1.5 trillion counting up to $2.4 trillion of deficit reduction including the stop gap austerity budgets that came before the super austerity budget that was the Budget Control Act of 2011.
The Deficit Reduction We Have Achieved So Far
Since the start of fiscal year 2011, President Barack Obama has signed into law approximately $2.4 trillion of deficit reduction for the years 2013 through 2022. Nearly three-quarters of that deficit reduction is in the form of spending cuts, while the remaining one-quarter comes from revenue increases. (see Figure 1) As a result of that deficit reduction, the projected rise in debt levels from today through 2022 has decreased by nearly 10 full percentage points of gross domestic product. In fact, under today’s policies, debt levels in 2022—as a share of GDP—will be only slightly higher than they are expected to be by the end of next year.
The last temporary appropriations bill passed in December 2010 ran out on March 4, 2011. The new Congress then enacted several more temporary bills, and finally, on April 15, 2011, passed a full appropriations bill for the remainder of the 2011 fiscal year. This second half of the appropriations process also cut a substantial amount of spending. Each new appropriations bill passed by the new Congress cut funding even more than the first set had. The result was another approximately $180 billion in spending reductions over the 10-year period. Altogether, the fiscal year 2011 appropriations process reduced future discretionary spending by $585 billion, or about 4.3 percent.
Over the subsequent several months, Congress engaged in a protracted debate over the looming debt limit. The result of that debate was a bill titled the Budget Control Act. The act—also known as the debt-limit deal—reduced spending again. It did so mainly by setting caps on the overall amount of discretionary resources that Congress could allocate each year for the next decade. These caps were set even lower than the just-enacted, inflation-adjusted 2011 levels. So after already cutting spending several times to the tune of more than $500 billion, the Budget Control Act cut spending again—this time by approximately $860 billion. Together, the fiscal year 2011 appropriations process and the Budget Control Act are responsible for nearly $1.5 trillion in discretionary spending cuts. This is a whopping 10.6 percent reduction from inflation-adjusted 2010 spending levels.
Do we really want to coddle the proud anti intellectual denial of 10 year cumulative austerity which is a proven reality now? Not if we are still a reality based community. I'd say that the people who denied this in my last diary must have the mind of a ten year old if they still deny that there will actually factually be cuts for 10 years, every year. After all, there's that same 1.5 trillion number which completely corroborates everything in my last few diaries. Is there any corroboration of the claim that these cuts are only in the future? Hello no! You see on the figure 2 chart where it says cumulative?
1. growing in quantity, strength, or effect by successive additions or gradual steps cumulative pollution
2. gained by or resulting from a gradual building up cumulative benefits
When dealing with the type that would deny this and brag about it, it's important to know that we are dealing with the same kind of mindset that would claim that interest doesn't compound every year. Seriously. People are allowed to have their own opinions, but not their own facts. Unless there is a citation of facts that accompany those opinions to base them off of, it's just amounts to more anti-intellectual fervor. One might as well be a tea partier if they go that far to deny these facts. There should be a limit as to how many comments we are going to allow from commentators who deny facts and use no sources in diaries full of them.
This is especially true of those adding insult to injury to what I or anyone else who knows basic economic theory know. We know it's embarrassing garbage to invoke the name of famous economist John Maynard Keynes, improperly on this site, to try to tie him to this administration that enacted austerity during a jobs crisis; a crisis one would have to deny in order to try conflating this administration's pseudo Keynesian(as in not even) attempts. It's easy to toss that pathetic attempt away out in the garbage(where it belongs) with the facts as I just did. I know those professing this fantasy must now hope people believe we are living under an economic boom since austerity is now.
You can fool some people sometimes, but you can't fool all the people all the time. It should be embarrassing by now for anyone to rec the embarrassing nonsense of anyone attempting to portray this austerity as "textbook Keynesianism." My advice would be to don't rec anyone claiming that these cuts are "only for the future." By now anyone still claiming that is an emberassment. This was just demolished by the Senate Budget Committee's own description of the Budget Control Act of 2011.
To make matters worse, they say they somehow someway see a booming economy on the way thus peddling the delusion that President Obama is somehow Lord Keynes today. This is a dangerous kind of anti-intellectualism that can be found way on the right and everyone on this site should be aware of this. They shouldn't coddle it as if it's worthy of being debated. It's not. It's third way fake Democratic partisan warrior propaganda.
I debunked this propaganda with academic research. I shouldn't have to keep talking about it. I've done the heavy lifting and sourced the work for every point I made. Too bad for the propagandists that data matters in the real world. I'll admit the real world can be harsh and so can the truth, but we will never really move forward unless we demand even the most hysterical among us to acknowledge it.
Why? It's because dealing with things as they are is the first step to trying to change them to what they should be. That embarrassing ignorant comparison of Obama to Keynes is specifically embarrassing to econ blogs, let me tell you. It makes matters worse to see some treating it as a worthy argument. I implore them not to do so for the good of the site. We do want people to take this site seriously, right? I hope so.
Nuance is important for understanding these matters, and I provided a lot of it in this diary on this subject. Yet if we allow anyone to start derailing diaries while proudly ignoring the substance in them while derisively calling them "cut and paste" without any sources of their own to back their misinformation up, it does not lead to a conducive learning environment.
That's what a reality based community is supposed to be all about. For instance, If you read my diary linked to on the subject you will find that as a Post Keynesian MMT proponent I disagree with the 1936 Keynes about balancing the budget even during a boom, and instead agree with the 1930 Keynes who advocated Chartalism (also explained in the diary). However, because I know what Keynes meant even in 1936, I know that invoking him to pretend austerity in a jobs crisis isn't happening, like it is right now proven up above, is not an educated argument to make.
The only loyalty is to ignorance and inflicting qualitative damage to one's fellow man or woman who are being sequestered. It's embarrassing, insulting, and damaging to anyone who wants to learn and are not merely proud of what they haven't learned for perceived partisan loyalty. This lack of true empathy is a cruel magic trick and it still won't transform our President into economist John Maynard Keynes. They're just going to have to study harder and find a more relevant comparison.
President Obama's Austerity Does Not Make Him a Keynesian
Since we have since abandoned the gold standard in 1972 when the Bretton Woods international financial system fell, we can and need to create dollars and run the deficits needed to close the output gap. We can do this without the same worries as having to mine gold for bank reserves to store at the fed and to be shipped abroad to pay trade deficits. We have to implore people to face reality and that absolute reality is that Obama is not waiting until after the slump to cut spending so even on basic Keynesian grounds, the comparison fails. This is on top of some of the most austere budgets(or stop gaps in replacement of one) since Eisenhower. I imagine the people making these weird comparisons don't know much about history, aggregate demand, or what a hole we are still in.
Who Is The Smallest Government Spender Since Eisenhower? Would You Believe It's Barack Obama?
This is not a good thing. These are the forgotten facts that some are refusing to pay attention to and despite some peoples' hurt feelings in wanting to believe it, it's actually not good for the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression still ongoing. Thanks to my last diary, most know where I am coming from when I speak of sectoral balances, national accounting, and how there is no real responsible deficit reduction in this economy without full employment. It will only suck income out of the private sector that is hemorrhaging demand still from the bust of the housing bubble and overall leakages from our trade deficit.
The smart diarists and commentators here who have to deal with this kind of third way partisan warrior propaganda are not given the respect and help they need from this community. They should, because they deserve it. They offer value to this community while the many commentators who constantly deny facts and derail diaries with their troll like propaganda provide no value whatsoever.
They're only here to disrupt well sourced diaries. They are not on the same level of debate, because they subvert the value of the discourse. It is of no value to deny any of these facts I have laid out clearly. After all, look at the White House bragging about exactly what I, the Senate Budget Committee, the Center for American Progress, the Congressional Budget Office, and White House's Office of Management and Budget laid out.
The White House openly brags about these facts I continually laid out on their website.
In 2011, President Obama signed a bipartisan compromise that cut nearly $1 trillion in spending over the next decade, reducing discretionary spending to its lowest level as a share of the economy since Dwight D. Eisenhower was president while protecting job-creating investments like education and research. Learn more
The key words are "over the next decade" so that's three for three for me. Zero for the anti intellectual crowd trolling and denying these facts. And don't just take my opinion on this. CEPR Economist Dean Baker knows there has been a commitment to austerity by this administration and Congress
, and he represents the reality based community. He wrote a paper on the Housing bubble in 2002 and knows austerity when he sees it.
Economist and NYT columnist Paul Krugman knows this as well and provides a chart showing the depth of this austerity. He shows that while our fiscal contraction is smaller than in Europe, it's not by that much. His work here also represents the reality based community. Keep in mind the excuse about this chart including cuts in state and local government ignores that they have gotten less money from the Federal Government and had to cut back.
Obama knew that they were having to cut back and stood by idly when he could have attempted to stem those losses by directing more money to state and local. The federal workforce has been cut and fed wages have been frozen and cut going to my sourced points. The U.K experiencing much worse austerity by definition does not mean the President is a Keynesian. Austerity lite is not Keynesian anymore than crushing austerity in the U.K and Eurozone is.
This was also explained to those proud of ignoring facts and data while refusing to read the chart in my diaries. For instance, though the U.K has double dipped over the last five years and almost triple dipped this quarter, our 4th quarter 2012 growth was just .1% higher(.4%) than theirs is now(.3%) because we cut 15% of federal spending across the board in Q4 2012. We may not have double dipped on revision, but we came close to doing it one quarter. Only someone who is proud of not know anything would claim that's "waiting until the boom."
It isn't. It's austerity by definition. It's in the data I laid out. It's not Keynesian and certainly not Post Keynesian MMT which is what we need to adopt. Anyone who denies this and trolls a diary deserves only recipes. If we were to uphold standards in this community, they would be called out for who they are and what they are doing. Otherwise, we can't claim to be a reality based community. I really would like us to consistently hold some standards.
These are facts. Deny them at society's peril.
Sat May 18, 2013 at 5:32 PM PT: This diary has been cited by Mike Norman Economics further giving weight to what I said and how I said it. Thank you for putting this one on the rec list everyone!