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  •  What should they have done differently (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    starduster, TexasTom

    leading up to 2010?

    I have my own thoughts, many of which center around not ignoring the huge and painful increase in unemployment right after shoveling billions of dollars in bailout money at the very people who caused those jobs to be lost.

    But that's just me.

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

    by dinotrac on Wed May 08, 2013 at 02:30:54 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Just follow through on their campaign promises (0+ / 0-)

      from 2006 and 2008.

      •a huge stimulus (~$4T)
      •EFCA
      •climate change legislation
      •immigration reform
      •increase in the minimum wage

      Pretty simple, really.  Had they either enacted those items, or tried to extract a political price from Republicans for obstructing, they wouldn't be in the position they're in now. That's just the beginning, but it's a very significant beginning.  Democrats campaigned on these items, particularly in 2008.  Then they just walked away from them.  

      Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

      by Big River Bandido on Wed May 08, 2013 at 07:25:12 AM PDT

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      •  I don't remember them promising $4 trillion (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Big River Bandido

        Would have been pretty stupid to do because it would never get through Congress and would have been a disaster of biblical proportions if it had been done as badly as the "stimulus" act that did get passed.

        A proper stimulus -- geared to prod the economy along instead of simply repaying party interests -- would have been a big help for 2010, as well as other acts that signaled a real interest in the plight of unemployed workers.

        ACA soaked up time and interest from things that people cared about more -- AND -- Democrats seemed completely ambivalent to the big tax increase getting ready to hit middle class workers right after the election.

        It didn't help that the economy tanked under Bush, but the subsequent explosion in unemployment came in the early days of the new administration.  I'm still amazed that nobody figured out that the administration could not be seen as not caring about unemployment and hope to do well in 2010.

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

        by dinotrac on Wed May 08, 2013 at 07:46:22 AM PDT

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        •  "Proper stimulus" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          dinotrac

          was my definition, taken from what Paul Krugman and Joseph Stieglitz have both said is about the figure needed to jumpstart a $15T economy.  

          The "stimulus bill" the Congress actually passed was a drop in the bucket by comparison.  $800 billion, half of which was tax cuts targeted toward the very people who didn't need them (and thus wouldn't spend them, thereby creating $0 in stimulus for that $400 billion).  So in the end, a $400 billion "stimulus" package. Not going to amount to a hill of beans in an economy this size.  

          Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

          by Big River Bandido on Wed May 08, 2013 at 07:56:02 AM PDT

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          •  A proper stimulus is more than a dollar amount (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Big River Bandido

            The "stimulus" of 2009 was not proper because it was never designed to stimulate anything, not because of the dollar amount. The same dollars applied well would have done more.  
            More dollars applied well more than that.
            More dollars applied badly? Who knows.

            And yes, the actual stimulus effect was a bit less than a hill of beans.

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

            by dinotrac on Wed May 08, 2013 at 08:05:34 AM PDT

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            •  The amount of actual stimulus IS relevant (0+ / 0-)

              Even an $800 billion stimulus package would not have been enough, and Krugman said so, loudly.  The reason is that stimulus has to be of a size relative to the entire economic output sufficient to actually have impact.  

              Congressional "Democrats" were cowards in that fight...they shied away from even one trillion in stimulus because it "sounded" bad.  Or at least that's what they said. Their words and deeds since then indicate that, not only were they never committed to stimulus in the first place, but that they either never studied or have rejected Keynesian economic theories.  In either case, it's incompetence.  

              Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

              by Big River Bandido on Wed May 08, 2013 at 08:20:49 AM PDT

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              •  Perfect wording. (0+ / 0-)

                The amount of actual stimulus is relevant, much more so than the total number of dollars spent.

                The 2009 package was doubly bad -- passed in haste to make a big splash before the new administration understood the magnitude of the problem.

                By spending a whopping ton of money -- and $800 billion is a whopping ton of money -- on an ineffective package,  they

                1. Squandered a lot of the money they did spend, and
                2. Made is damned near impossible to go back for more.

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

                by dinotrac on Wed May 08, 2013 at 08:34:11 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

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