Monday, September 29, 2008

We Would Have Voted For It....

But she called us names!

Maybe one of the most pathetic moments in US political history.

The Dismal Science

"What we are witnessing, in the broadest sense, is the bankruptcy of modern economics. Its conceit has been that we had solved the problem of stability. Oh, there would be periodic recessions, but the prospects of a major economic collapse were negligible because we knew how the system worked and could take steps to prevent it. What's been so unsettling about the present crisis is that it has not conformed to the standard model of business cycles and has not submitted to familiar textbook solutions."

Robert Samuelson's entire article.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Republicans Unite!

From the Republican platform:

"We do not support government bailouts of private institutions. Government interference in the markets exacerbates problems in the marketplace and causes the free market to take longer to correct itself. We believe in the free market as the best tool to sustained prosperity and opportunity for all."

Monday, September 22, 2008

Neoliberalism is Making You Poorer

$700 Billion is nothing to sneaze at. To put this amount of money in some sort of perspective, the entire GNP of Bolivia is $13 billion.

From a US government perspective the Carter Administration were the first major de-regulators. Reagan and Bush consolidated the orthodoxy and Clinton got the major legislation passed with the overthrow of Glass-Steagal. Bush Jr. wanted to cap it all off by dumping the last vestige of the New Deal, Social Security, but the ederly are still too powerful for that move.

Our current position is summed up well by Alex Cockburn here:

"By all rights, this last crisis has brought us to the crossroads where neoliberalism should be buried with a stake through its heart.
We’ve had thirty years worth of deregulation – the loosening of government supervision. This has been the neoliberal mantra preached by both major parties, the whole of the establishment press and almost every university economics department in the country. It is central to the current disasters. And if you want to identify symbolic figures in the legislated career of deregulation, there are no more resplendent culprits than the man at McCain’s elbow, Phil Gramm, and the man standing at Obama’s elbow at his press conference, Robert Rubin."

Rubin and Gramm (the implementer and author) of the de-regulation of our financial system are poised to rule. Little will change with these two characters in charge.

Read the entire article here.

Even liberals like Robert Kutner know this to be a collosal rip-off.

And some good old fashion red baiting:

The Socialists have taken over!!!!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

The SubPrime Crisis Explained

In an entertaining way.

A Very Stable Race

There has been lots of chatter about the volatility of the race. It really ain't so. Take out the convention bounces, and remember what full life of a bounce does, and the race is pretty much where it was in June.

The idiotic "independent" is once again in the driver seat.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Is Palin Now a Liabilty?

Palin's average favorability score is now a +7 -- about 10 points behind Joe Biden's numbers. Perhaps more importantly, these numbers are 10-15 points behind where Palin's numbers were just a week or so ago. If voters come in not knowing very much about a candidate -- and the more they see of the candidate, the less they like of the candidate -- this is a major concern.

Is McCain in trouble?

Friday, September 12, 2008

The Palin Effect

It's real. It has jazzed the base. It is still early but it gives the gunners, Jesus lovers and bigots a reason to hold their nose and vote for McCain who they do not trust.

The culture war has always been a reality in America. Conventional wisdom traces the internal clash of civilizations to the 60's but right wing populism has always been around such as in the 20's (Scopes), at the turn of the 20th century (the progressives-notorious Jew haters and nose turners of the great unwashed), most Southerners were convinced the cosmopolitan North was a power hungry cabal of elite capitalists (they were), Jackson's appeal went right to the heart of the homespun Cider drinkers and Indian killers and we could probably come up with many more examples.

The problem for the United States left (we have a minuscule Left) is that liberals for the most part are elitists. It's the nature of the system. They tend to be better educated, higher income and appreciate the city life to shooting and praying, particularly the leadership. The backbone of the Democratic Party; organized labor, Blacks, Jews and most women are not of the upper class, sans Jews, but the folk that are trotted out as leaders have a definite urban, and urbane, bias (Kennedy, McGovern, Mondale, Dukakis, Gore, Kerry, Obama). Notice the 2 winners, Carter and Clinton, were southerners with some rural or HillBillary in them.

It's not that the Republican leadership are not of the upper class for the most part but if you look at the leaders of the populist right and the Republican Party they have the meanness and patriotism that appeals to men, white ethnics and the small business suburbanites.

Since organized labor has declined since the late 60's and the South has flipped parties because of race the Democrats must depend not only on urban folk and labor but also on the suburbs. This has made them the handmaidens of Wall Street, think Robert Rubin, and budget balancers. Not exactly the Huey Long "Make Every Man a King" program.

This is why the Palin's of the world do well. Because they bring home the pork, while talking tough on taxes and they pose at church and in the tree stand. Most folk will accept less government for city folk, thus vouchers there but not in the suburbs or rural areas but know that they are getting cops, prisons, roads and prescriptions so they continue to vote for the porky Republicans. That's why McCain alone would lose.