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Opening Arguments

Oh, Mother

Mother Jones is downright ecstatic about BHO's speech last night:

The speech—a State of the Union stand-in—presented a clear, mostly left-of-center agenda for his presidency and a series of forceful rationales for his proposed actions.

[. . .]

Obama had laid out a stunningly grand game plan: fix the economy, solve the housing crisis, save Wall Street, transform America's energy system, revive its education system, renew and expand its health care system, and lessen the deficit—and, oh yes, while crushing al Qaeda and resolving wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. But he outlined all this with a can-do attitude that seemed more than canned optimism.

Sure glad it was only mostly a left-of-center agenda. Don't think I could stand any more can-do that we've already witnessed.


tim zank
Wed, 02/25/2009 - 12:39pm

I opted to cleanse my palate of all things Barack last night and skip the pre-emptive 2012 re-election speech. I can't escape the guy lately. Whether it's his campaign stops in Elkhart, Fort Meyers, or Denver, or the everpresent television commercials for Barack & labor, Barack & clean energy, Barack & Montel's coins, Barack & the plates, it's just non stop. This guy is a brand bigger than Walmart and he's campaigning non-stop.

All I can say is, with the gamble he's made, he better hope he's enlisted enough poor people and illegal aliens to carry him in 2012, because by then, all of the taxpayers in the middle class will begin to see the bills for all this "help" start showing up in their mailboxes and the hopey-changey ether is gonna start to wear off.

To put it in terms an Econ 101 student can understand, you can't spend more than you make and stay solvent.

Bob G.
Wed, 02/25/2009 - 1:58pm

Agreed, Tim.
"Dem's some prety BIG DICE he's a rollin' now, ain't they?"

The CARDINAL RULE in gambling:
NEVER, EVER "bet the farm" when you don't OWN it, LIVE on it, OR even rent it out!!!

Recipe for disaster?

Andrew Jarosh
Wed, 02/25/2009 - 2:59pm

When times get really bad, it is not only appropriate -- it is necessary -- for the government to spend more than it takes in.
John Maynard Keynes

Michael B-P
Wed, 02/25/2009 - 4:34pm

I didn't hear the speech and I'm not reading the reviews. The "pre-game" buildup which ran througout the day convinced me to watch chapters 5-6 of Schama's "History of Britain" instead. Cromwell and his Protestant fundamentalist minions essentially established a theocratic dictatorship following the bankrupting of the nation by Charles I through incompetent managment of foreign military interventions, which, of course was followed by Charles' beheading. History, as they say, paraphrases itself.

tim zank
Wed, 02/25/2009 - 8:54pm


If you believe Keynes, you believe in a meddling interventionist government, which is precisely what we have voted in. A newer, larger version of the FDR "new deal" which I'll have to live with for now, (until the imminent middle class taxpayer revolt) but even Keynes knew it couldn't be sustained indefinetely, as the bill eventually comes due and yes, it has to be paid.

I doubt you (and most of the country) are really true Keynesians, I think you're Obamans and once you reach a certain thresh-hold of pain monetarily, your love affair with hope-n-change will end abruptly. Usually folks that actually have some "stuff" get really pissed off when they can't afford THEIR "stuff" anymore because they are paying for somone ELSES "stuff".

As easy and as fun as it is to just print more and spend more, there hasn't been a society on the face of the Earth that's pulled it off yet, and I don't see us as being the first.

Wed, 02/25/2009 - 11:00pm

Jeff Jacoby wrote in the Boston Globe:

Keynes died in 1946, but the Keynesian fallacy - that money for nothing (government spending without increased productivity) can boost the economy - lives on, impervious to the evidence disproving it. To be sure, many economists dismiss it - several hundred of them, including Nobel laureates Edward Prescott, Vernon Smith, and James Buchanan, issued a public statement last week calling it "a triumph of hope over experience to believe that more government spending will help the US today."

If we can all survive until the midterm elections, Speaker Nancy will be gone and we can get back capitalism.

Thu, 02/26/2009 - 9:03am

We have a meddling, interventionist government because years of Republican push for deregulation left no one minding the store and no one wanting to playing the role of capitalism's bad cop. We are where we are because our system couldn't police itself. History here proves it time and again.

tim zank
Thu, 02/26/2009 - 9:46am

Andrew, convenient Dem talking point, but far from accurate, you're in the "fishwrap" business, do a little research. Look at the only real financial services "deregulation" in 30 years, Gramm-Leach-Bliley....Final Senate Vote was a whopping 7 Democrats voting no. There's video all over out there from Chuckie Shumer, to Dodd, and their pals praising it.

Then flip to the NUMEROUS videos of Bwanny Fwank, Franklin Raines etal flat out denying and lying on camera about Fannie/Freddie while the frickin ship was going down.

tim zank
Thu, 02/26/2009 - 10:05am

By the way, on the Mortgage Reform Act, (too reign in fannie & freddie) "The One" voted "Present" as usual.....


Kevin Knuth
Thu, 02/26/2009 - 10:09am


I think you have a typo- I think you meant to type Barney Frank. I know you think you are being funny- but you really lessen your argument with stunts like that.

Let's talk about Fannie and Freddie- McCain called for more regulations and got a bill out of a Senate committee. Why didn't the REPUBLICAN controlled Senate even bring it up for a vote? (and remember all the CRYING the GOP did over oil-drilling? "GIVE US AN UP OR DOWN VOTE")

Well, they didn't call for a vote because GOP Senators took money from Fannie and Freddie too.

I think there is enough blame to go around- how about you quit whining that the majority of Americans want Democrats in charge and offer constructive ideas for a change?

tim zank
Thu, 02/26/2009 - 12:42pm

Kevin, no typo. I make fun of Barney Frank unabashadly, because he deserves it. It is my opinion he's a sanctimonious, obnoxious, lying hack who deserves absolutely NO respect from any thinking Americans. He's an unsavory character that also sorely LACKS character.

To whit: Congressman Barney Frank said, "I see nothing in here that suggests that safety and soundness are an issue." referring to the 2004 investigation of Fannie Mae by the OFHEO. They 211 pages of "cooked books" by Franki Raines & friends...

He has not the capacity to accept responsibility for anything, in fact, he is the poster child for the "blame everyone else" constituency so prevalent in Democrat Party circles.

My research on the bill sponsored by Hagel, McCain, Sununu, and Dole was forwarded to The Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs which was comprised of 23 members, 10 Republicans ad 13 Demcrats with Dodd as the ranking member. You can take a guess what happened to it.

Suffice to say, since the Carter administration, Democrats have been testicle deep in shoving mortgage loans on people that couldn't qualify all in the name of "fairness". The list of who's who in Freddie, Fannie, CRA, FHA reads like a Democrat campaign committee.

Here's an interesting list of recipients of the most campaign dollars from 1989 to 2007:

Top Recipients of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
Campaign Contributions, 1989-2008


1. Dodd, Christopher J

2. Kerry, John

3. Obama, Barack

4. Clinton, Hillary

5. Kanjorski, Paul E

6. Bennett, Robert F

7. Johnson, Tim

8. Conrad, Kent

9. Davis, Tom

10. Bond, Christopher S 'Kit'

11. Bachus, Spencer

12. Shelby, Richard C

13. Emanuel, Rahm

14. Reed, Jack

15. Carper, Tom

16. Frank, Barney

17. Maloney, Carolyn B

18. Bean, Melissa

19. Blunt, Roy

20. Pryce, Deborah

21. Miller, Gary

22. Pelosi, Nancy

23. Reynolds, Tom

24. Hoyer, Steny H

25. Hooley, Darlene

Includes contributions from PACs and individuals.
2008 cycle totals based on data downloaded from the
Federal Election Commission on June 30, 2008.

Categories:Congress, Heavy Hitters, Influence & Lobbying, Politicians

I count 16 out of 23 are Democrats, and the highest recipients have some very familiar names, don't they???

Kevin Knuth
Thu, 02/26/2009 - 2:24pm


I said there is plenty of blame to go around.

So answer the question- why didn't the GOP Senate bring up the bill that McCain had for a vote? Why didn't they give it an "up-down" vote? What were they afraid of?

YOU did research on a bill and are upset that no one payed any attention? When you mock the President of the United States and refer to a Congressman as "Bwanny Fwank"- don't ever expect to be taken seriously.

tim zank
Thu, 02/26/2009 - 7:00pm

Kevin, I don't know why the bill died in committee, and furthermore I don't care. It's all academic now anyway. What we do know (with scads of video clip proof) is that Democrats have had their various appendages in, around, and on every bad piece of legislation regarding all matters financial since the Carter administration using social engineering to build a democrat voter base.

As for not taking people seriously that "mock" others or call them names, let me ask you this. As a loyal Democrat, do you take Harry Reid seriously? He's one of your party's more vocal leaders when it comes to mocking our previous President, remember?

William Larsen
Mon, 03/02/2009 - 2:28pm

Economists and politicians say that for every $1 dollar of stimulus, it will increase the GDP by $1.57. This sounds good, but let us look at the $1 dollar we borrowed. First, from past observations, this is never paid back and we borrow money to pay the interest. To borrow the $1 in 1958, we have had to borrow $11.04. If we take the $1.57 in increased GDP, and raise the tax to repay the $1 borrowed, we need to tax 67% of the incremental increase in GDP in the first year or raise taxes even more after that.

Ronald Reagan cut taxes, Bush said no new taxes, Clinton raised a few taxes, Bush Jr. cut taxes and Obama is trying to provide tax incentives and tax credits. Past history does not support the notion that higher taxes will be used to pay back borrowed money that increased the national debt. So who is going to pay this borrowed money back? I can give you a hint. Just take a look at the shape our economy is in. We are paying for the sins of our predecessors through a lowering of standard of living, loss of jobs and soon to be very high inflation.

We cannot borrow our way out of this mess anymore than we can spend our way out. We got to this point through too much debt. As I stated in the debate with Souder and Montagano, I was against any bailout. Now Souder is saying anymore bailouts are bad. If you give them a buck, they will take all you have. There is no painless solution. Borrowing just post pones and deepens the pain. This recession or worse must be dealt with normally. Providing an artificial stimulus will do nothing long term once the stimulus is removed or no longer affordable, which would be the worst case of all.