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budget future now vs 2050 for seniors and non  health spending

Ezra Klein's chart showing America's spending gutted to protect seniors under Paul Ryan

Ezra Klein:

How the aging of America is hurting the Republican Party
The Fix:
On Friday, President Obama embraced a concept long cherished by his party: false equivalency...

Rejecting the “both sides do it” construct will delight Obama’s base who has been insisting for weeks (months, really) that the media’s tendency toward playing “fair” has led to a gross mischaracterization of the facts surrounding sequester. (The Washington Post’s Greg Sargent has been a leading voice in the “false equivalency” chorus.)

I know I've been with Greg Sargent on hammering the press on insisting on false equivalency, and I took this as an acknowledgment that Obama and Dems object to it. Better than ignoring it.

Greg Sargent:

Now that the sequester is set to hit, and both sides are settling in for a long, grueling political fight, they are eying the government shutdown deadline of March 27th as the next deadline around which to craft their strategies...

UPDATE: One additional point. Even if the sequester takes some time to be felt in districts, Dems are hopeful that groups within districts who are worried about getting hit by the cuts will go to their GOP members of Congress to tell them that the sequester is a real problem for them — hopefully making it harder for these Republicans to support continuing funding at lower levels. There’s also the possibility that some Republicans who don’t think the sequester is good enough could also deny support. The key for Dems is to maintain unity against any lower level funding extension.


.@ThePlumLineGS: interesting read on D House strategy: http://t.co/... but unclear to me they have the discipline required.
@DemFromCT via TweetDeck

Ezra Klein:
Presidents have plenty of pollsters on staff, and they give many speeches in the course of a year. So how do they so systematically overestimate the importance of those speeches?

[Political scientist George] Edwards believes that by the time Presidents reach the White House their careers have taught them that they can persuade anyone of anything. “Think about how these guys become President,” he says. “The normal way is talking for two years. That’s all you do, and somehow you win. You must be a really persuasive fellow.”

But being President isn’t the same as running for President. When you’re running for President, giving a good speech helps you achieve your goals. When you are President, giving a good speech can prevent you from achieving them.

WaPo:

We will appoint a reader representative shortly to address our readers’ concerns and questions. Unlike ombudsmen in the past, the reader representative will be a Post employee. The representative will not write a weekly column for the page but will write online and/or in the newspaper from time to time to address reader concerns, with responses from editors, reporters or business executives as appropriate.
Employee = independent ombudsman? Another false equivalence.

Hugh Bailey:

This all happened back when the Democratic Party ran the White House and both branches of Congress, with the mystical 60-vote, filibuster-proof majority in the Senate for a short time. In the face of stubborn Republican opposition, though, what that 60 votes meant in practice was that any Democrat (or independent aligned with Democrats), could for any reason hold everything up until his demands were assuaged. Every one of 60 senators had a chance to be king for a day.

And wouldn't you know it, Joe Lieberman decided this was his time to shine.
As CNN reported in December 2009: "Dashing the hopes of Democratic lawmakers Sunday, Sen. Joseph Lieberman signaled he would oppose a health care bill that includes a proposal to expand Medicare to people as young as 55." This came just months after he told this newspaper's editorial board, on camera, that he favored just such a plan.

So why did he change his mind? As The New York Times put it, "he was particularly troubled by the overly enthusiastic reaction to the proposal by some liberals."...

Health coverage in America is demonstrably worse off than it could have been all because Joe Lieberman wanted to stick it to the liberals.

Don'tcha miss him more than ever? And don'tcha love selfless and humble Friends of Joe McCain and Graham even more right now after reading this?

Timothy Noah:

Jonathan Chait has a good post up about how Republicans don't really care about tax reform. I'd go further and say they aren't all that interested in deficit reduction, either. Let's review the contours of the current dispute between President Obama and House Republicans over ending the sequester.
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Comment Preferences

  •  Good Morning (17+ / 0-)

    Thanks for another APR !

    It's deadsville on the Orange Tube this morning

  •  So - The White House agrees with me? (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    judyms9, rl en france, Bon Temps, Jim R, salmo

    About time they got something right.

    The sequester is a good thing.

    Yes, it is a scary thing: We have to depend on those mopes we call leaders to take advantage of this opportunity to do something that might actually -- if only accidentally -- be good for the country.

    The beauty of the sequester is this -- and Sargent gets it right:

    All of the oxen are gored. That's especially true because of the Defense cuts, and the way Defense cuts get spread out among the states.

    Better, the oxen aren't gored equally.  Social Security is exempted.  Medicare is nearly exempt.

    They can still screw us, but that's always true.

    Now -- everybody who wants to preserve something has to DO something. And, holy crap, Batman!! The circumstances mean a lot more people are paying attention than is usually the case.

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

    by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 04:47:29 AM PST

    •  actually, less are (18+ / 0-)

      see the markets.

      The trouble isn't defense cuts. It's the jobs associated with unwise meat cleaver cuts.

      Now, those that think any cut us a good cut are happy. I'm not so sure, but we won't know for a while.

      As to those who want to preserve have to Do somethibng, that was the idea... force action. Uncertain a dysfunctional GOP can, though whatever happens will be breaking the stupid Hastert rule (ie done with D votes).

      Ezra has a great read on what's wrong... the GOP is >65 year old white guys and they act accordingly. Of course, that's been said by me for years, but whatever.

      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

      by Greg Dworkin on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 04:52:14 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  So make them more wisely. (0+ / 0-)

        It's hard for me to hear you cry jobs now that it suits your purpose.

        After years of hearing you say "Patience -- Rome wasn't built in a day. Gee, I'm sorry that your family is falling apart and -- Hey! I hear that refrigerator boxes are REALLY sturdy, so don't worry about losing your home.",  it's hard to put much weight in such things.

        In the words of that great and weighty philosopher, Gene Roddenberry: The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.

        There are millions of long-term unemployed and underemployed people. If the administration decides to administer the cuts in a way to maximize job loss, so be it.

        Let the dealing begin.

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

        by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:10:31 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  except what's happening loses jobs (9+ / 0-)

          govt jobs = jobs. Your deliberate twisting of that to pretend jobs never mattered until now is the source of your error.

          or to put it a different way, getting us out of a near depression mattered, so putting us back into recession doesn't 'all of a sudden ' matter, it always mattered.

          "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

          by Greg Dworkin on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:17:51 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes. A relative few - AND - the administration (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Bon Temps

            has a lot more control over that than it cares to admit.

            I do feel bad about more people losing jobs. Nobody should have to go through that.

            At this point, however,  I've adopted your position.
            "Gee -- I feel really bad about that, guys, but, hey, life happens."

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

            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:22:48 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  really? you want more stimulus? (6+ / 0-)

              thanks for coming around to my position.

              "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

              by Greg Dworkin on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:36:31 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  The public sector (7+ / 0-)

              has lost close to 700,000 jobs. Our recovery would be in much better shape had we kept those jobs.
              Even Reagan understood that deficit spending after a recession helped spur recovery.

              “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 Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:39:58 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  and the private sector has lost 12 Million plus! (0+ / 1-)
                Recommended by:
                Hidden by:
                annominous

                welcome to the club, public sector workers.. it's a frickin' recession!

                Public sector unemployment rates have been tiny compared to private sector.

                •  Actually, the private sector (9+ / 0-)

                  has regained all the jobs it had lost under Obama, while the public sector has been slowly shedding jobs.
                   photo apriljobschart_zps18d0d861.jpg

                  A post at Think Progress from May 2012:

                  As of April, there are now more private sector jobs in the United States than there were in January 2009, when President Obama took office. You read that right. We have now replaced all of the private sector jobs lost while Obama has been president. And that was no mean feat, given that over the course of 2009, the private sector shed about 4.2 million jobs.
                  Unfortunately, the news is not nearly so good when it comes to the public sector, where there are currently 607,000 fewer people working than there were when President Obama took office.
                  http://thinkprogress.org/...

                  “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 Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:55:12 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Hey! The administration has accomplished zero (1+ / 2-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Bon Temps
                    Hidden by:
                    annominous, askew

                    growth!

                    Good for you guys, but...

                    The population hasn't, so we've actually lost about 3%. And that's at the beginning of the administration, which inherited an already-weak Bush economy.

                    Great job.

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

                    by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 06:02:58 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  derp (9+ / 0-)

                      if we point out how bad this recession is, you say it's an excuse, or that (paradoxically) we don't care about jobs

                      and if we point out we're not recovered yet, you say it's Obama's fault because he doesn't care about jobs.

                      At least you are consistent.

                      The truth? it is/was an awful recession, more stimulus would help, that's been blocked by republicans who are now making it worse, and no, the president is not an emperor that can solve it with a magic wand.

                      You're welcome.

                      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                      by Greg Dworkin on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 06:14:04 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Not recovered yet? Not even close. (0+ / 0-)

                        I've never said it's Obama's fault, but, as leader of the country and leader of the Democrats he certainly gets to share the blame.

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

                        by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 10:41:45 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  yeah, i agree (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          dinotrac, annominous

                          certainly takes some responsibility,and he'd take more if Rs didn't filibuster or otherwise block his programs AND they didn't work.

                          "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                          by Greg Dworkin on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 10:56:25 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Think hard, my friend -- When was the last time (0+ / 0-)

                            you heard me say something nice about the GOP?

                            I believe that I've had much nicer things to say about the current administration (and some not so nice things) than I've had to say about the GOP.

                            Which, as a conservative, really pisses me off.

                            I do believe that Democrats gave the unemployed short shrift in the period prior to the 2010 election.  I also believe that 2010 was a richly deserved thrashing.

                            But -- it was exasperation, not an endorsement of the GOP, which has squandered the opportunity given it by voters.

                            Other than that rather serious neglect, I'm not angry with Democrats even when I think they're wrong.  Other than abandoning workers for those two years, they've more or less done what Democrats do. That's what they should do.

                            Republicans, on the other hand, have been a steaming pile of horse shit -- AND -- they've turned away when we need leadership more than any time in recent history.

                            That's not what Eisenhower would do, It's not even what Nixon, Ford, or both Bushes would do.

                            Incompetence is one thing. Willfully turning your back on your country when it needs you the most?

                            That's worht getting angry.

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

                            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 11:08:13 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  yeah, i give you that (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            dinotrac

                            I think it's honest frustration on your part, and you are no GOP defender.

                            "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                            by Greg Dworkin on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 12:10:21 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I feel kind of bad about that rant, though. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Greg Dworkin

                            So I've come up with some nice things to say about the GOP:

                            1. Boehner has a really nice tan if you're into orange.

                            2. In the wake of hurricane Sandy, Chris Christie showed signs of not being a completely oblivious idiot.  I also feel a certain affinity for him as a fellow Corpulent American.

                            3.  George Prescott Bush is a nice looking young man, and speaks good Spanish.

                            4. It wouldn't surprise me to learn that the Romneys give out nice Halloween candy. I also wouldn't be surprised to learn that they buy Girl Scout cookies and pick up pies at school bake sales.

                            5.  When you don't do anything at all, it's hard to do too much that's really bad.

                            6. Gotta go back to Chris Christie. What a nice easy name to remember.

                            7.  The Koch brothers have done a fine job of alleviating the unemployment problem among pollsters, political consultants, and lobbyists.

                            8. Better still, the David H. Koch foundation funded NOVA to the tune of $7 million.  I love NOVA. I think everybody should love NOVA.

                            9. I don't care what all you prissy young liberals say.  Clint Eastwood is still cool.  

                            10. Aw man, I think I have to stop now.  I'm getting down to Lincoln freed the slaves, Eisenhower won the Big One, and TR looked great on horseback.

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

                            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 12:31:13 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  The absolute biggest (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          skohayes

                          obstacle to a better and faster recovery was and is republican obstructionism. IMO, the biggest mistake the Democrats have made was when Harry Ried backed off of filibuster reform. You can't change a party of charlatans but you can make it a lot harder for them.  Ried, Fienstein, Boxer and a few other Dem senators made the biggest mistake the Dems can claim.

                          How many ways could we have changed what happened if only filibuster rules had been stronger and fairer, instead of turning the senate into a minority rules body?  The list would send this comment sprawling over pages.

                          "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                          by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 10:56:34 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                    •  Too bad we had to deal with (4+ / 0-)

                      deficit hawks rather than people who wanted the economy to recover. And we have reduced the deficit and we have cut spending.
                      As we have seen, reducing the deficit and introducing tax cuts rather than growing the economy through stimulus hasn't done a damn thing for growth.
                      Buh bye, Leffer.

                      “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 Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 06:14:28 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  HRd for promoting RW talking points (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      askew, Lost and Found

                      that are not in line with facts.  

                      Between 2009 and Nov 2012, the goopbagger congress stymied every attempt of the Obama administration to generate jobs and growth. The goopbaggers figured the electorate would blame Obama. They were wrong.

                      In spite of their most destructive efforts, US GDP grew between 2010 - 2012. What metric are you suggesting we use? One that suits your RW meme?

                      •  If you're going to HR, at least get your facts (0+ / 0-)

                        straight.

                        It was a DEMOCRATIC Congress from 2006-2010.

                        Until that time, it was Democrats who ignored jobs and growth while they pursued "more important" things.

                        It was also Democrats, btw, who passed TARP and handed out most of the money.

                        As to GDP growth --
                        Go look at your own link more carefully:
                        That's about 2.2% growth

                        before adjusting for inflation
                        That's negative per-capita growth in inflated dollars, and more negative in constant dollars.

                        Now -- I have to ask you: Are you a Right-Wing lurker.  You seem to believe that the truth is a Right Wing Talking point. Dos theat mean you think Democrats lie?

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

                        by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 10:40:21 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  While job growth was stagnant (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Amber6541, annominous, skohayes

                          from 2006 to 2008, as it was during the ENTIRE GWB presidency, jobs were not the primary issue because the economy was not in the worst recession since the depression.

                          Furthermore it was the Bush WH that set up the rules and oversight of TARP, and the country had about 2 minutes to agree or not agree to it before we hurdled into a deep depression.

                          And finally, it is true that Obama made health care reform the priority of his first two years --- although he also got much other legislation accomplished. And I say thank God for that or our health care system would have been left untouched for at least another decade, optimistically.

                          Big country, big problems, all around.  All which could have been improved faster had it not been for an imo, treasonously obstructionist republican party.

                          "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                          by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 11:09:32 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  OK -- please point out where I have defended (0+ / 0-)

                            Bush on the economy.

                            Or, for that matter, suggested that Obama didn't walk into a steaming pile when he took office.

                            Doesn't mean he's done a good job since.

                            The numbers during the Obama administration would be anemic in an ordinary economy -- one operating somewhere near it's capacity.

                            That's not what we have.  We have millions of idled workers and lots of idled resources.  Ordinary growth won't cut it.  We need the kind of surge that usually comes when a recession ends.  We need to take up a lot of slack.

                            I am sympathetic to claims that Republicans have been an obstacle to growth over the last two years.  I agree.  Makes me wish the President really was as good as some Democrats like to think.  I would love to have seen FDR carving up this Congress.  He'd make mincemeat of these clowns -- and would have won the House back in the last election.  I think Bill Clinton would have done the same, based on his laceration of Mr. Newt and friends back in the 90s.

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

                            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 11:19:21 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  LOL, if FDR had had to contend with this congress (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            annominous

                            we wouldn't have Social Security, nor would we have had  any of the stimulus work programs that helped pull this country out of the recession.  Are you kidding me?

                            Just for starters, FDR passed SS with 81 republican votes in the house and 16 republican votes in the senate. (Interestingly, the numbers were roughly similar for numbers of republicans LBJ passed Medicare with.) Compare that to the number of republicans who voted for Obamacare, not to mention their over a hundred attempts to undo it since.

                            If you think FDR could have made "mincemeat out of these clowns" you are in woeful denial about the extreme and very determine state of the republican party today---as most of your comments suggest.

                            As for Mr. Clinton, do keep in mind he nullified Glass Stegal, a primary cause of the Great Recession, and passed NAFTA, a huge job looser for Americans.

                            "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                            by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 11:32:33 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Go back and study. Pay special attention to the (0+ / 0-)

                            election of 1934.

                            I agree with you on Glass-Steagall.  That was a sorry day for the American economy, but -- it is no reflection on Clinton's effectiveness in fighting a very obstructionist Republican Congress.  

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

                            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 12:12:17 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Irrelevant to my point, (0+ / 0-)

                            which was that FDR was not dealing with the republican party of today, not by a freaking long shot, not to mention he didn't have to deal with FOX news or the profusion of right wing radio that exists today.  This idea that FDR could have slayed today's GOP with one fell swoop is silly and denies the state of disfunction in congress due to republican obstructionism.

                            FDR didn't get the republican support he did for SS because he was a miracle politician, although he was certainly a good one, he got it because that GOP was not the extreme right wing body that it is today. Same goes for his work programs, an idea that the GOP of today would call communist, while Democrats call it stimulus.

                            The fact that Democrats did very well in 1934 compared to 2010 is a whole different discussion, with an Octopus's arms worth of factors.

                            "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                            by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 12:50:21 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  Now I'm sure you are a (0+ / 0-)

                          right wing troll. You rely overmuch on phony right wing talking points to make your case.

                          That claim of a 2006 - 2010 "democratic congress" is RW BS.  Get real. We democrats only had a fillibuster-proof Senate majority for a few weeks during that entire period, and that only if you count the DINOs. And the "democratic house" was also packed with blue dog DINOs for the entire period. They wanted to be paid off for their votes just like regular Republicans! disgracing the passage of the ACA. Your contention is refuted in more detail here.

                          And surely you are not blaming democrats for TARP?, (see about 1/4 down the page, but the entire post is fact-filled...). I will never forget those dark days when Wall Street held the retirement accounts of an entire generation hostage, with Bush and Paulson prodding for a TARP without any congressional oversight or legal consequences.  

                          I continuously wish the banksters would be held to account for their crimes. But we all have to recognize that the gooper congresses of the 1990s made those formerly regulated activities legal. And the goopbagger congress now refuses to fund remedies like Dodd Frank.

                          And, no, I'm not a RW lurker. I am a yellow-dog / New Deal democrat and proud of it.  My proof is, I don't post goopbagger talking points.  

                          I recognize that dKos welcomes almost everyone, and encourages vigorous debate with the expectation of remaining "reality-based" through that process. On the other hand, dKos expects the community to protect itself from all types of trolls. And the best way to identify stealth goop trolls is by their reliance on RW talking points. If you've got something to add to the conversation, please, by all means, add it. But if you are here to spew RW talking points (it's Obama's economy, stupid!, Obama bad! (goopbaggers recognize that Obama is not popular with liberals, and seek to exploit his centrism to goop advantage), sequestration good!, TARP was a democratic failure!, blame the 2006-2010 libbie congresses!) and nothing but, you should expect to be called on it.

                          •  TARP was a bipartisan offense against the nation. (0+ / 0-)

                            Not a proud day for Pelosi/Bush.

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

                            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 12:39:12 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  That's all you've got? nt (0+ / 0-)
                          •  It's all I need. (0+ / 0-)

                            The truth will set you free, right?

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

                            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 03:24:21 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  No. Your reply, insufficient as it is, (0+ / 0-)

                            did not respond to the majority of my points.

                            FWIW, after looking over this entire thread as it's grown today, it's pretty clear you are a common garden conservadem. I suppose it is possible that you are only spewing RW talking points because those talking points make sense to you (shudder). I acknowledge that's a little different from RW trolling.

                            We won't get more and better democrats following the conservadem, Blue Dog path. We already tried it; it's a losing strategy of appeasement.

                            Happy rest of the weekend! If you see me here tomorrow, please kick me out!

                  •  fun with statistics (0+ / 0-)

                    your graph conveniently starts with Jan 2009.  The downward trend starts much much higher a year before that.

                    Bureau of Labor Statistics

                    We have a long way to go.  Public sector employees have had it easy compared to private sector, who are still unemployed at rates twice that of public sector employees.

                    •  As the piece says- (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      askew, Lost and Found, annominous

                      "jobs lost under Obama".

                      “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 Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 06:33:21 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  Pissing contest not required. (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Bon Temps

                      It's fair for Democrats to point out that they started with a tanked economy.

                      But -- they do something very sneaky with numbers.

                      After correctly pointing out that they walked into a bad economy (a state) they then stop talking about how bad things are and switch to dynamic measures (we added a few jobs, eunemployment claims went down a bit, Hey look! GPD grew only a little more slowly than the population).

                      That allows them to avoid the fact that they haven't done anything to address the problem, but are happy simply to skim along the bottom.

                      I must, btw, add a GIANT ASTERISK to that statement. On this very site, Meteor Blades -- as fervently partisan as anyone -- has never lost sight of the true state of the economy, the true magnitude of the unemployment problem, or the true plight of the long-term unemployed.  So long as Meteor is here, nobody on DK has an excuse to be ignorant about the unemployment problem.

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

                      by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 10:47:51 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Who pushed through the stimulus? (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        annominous, skohayes

                        Democrats. Who wanted a much bigger stimulus? Democrats.
                        With a stimulus the size Krugman and others said was necessary, history could have been quite different.  But with the current GOP it's a miracle we got what we got.

                        Who put out the "American Jobs Plan?" The president. Which the republicans promptly ignored, and seems you have too.

                        Nothing was done perfectly by anyone, but stop making statements like this one "...the fact they haven't done anything to address the problem..." This is indeed RW BS, totally unsupported by the facts.

                        "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                        by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 11:17:51 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Democrats pushed through the alleged stimulus (0+ / 0-)

                          without evne gauging the problem.

                          It was called a stimulus plan, but was really just a payback to Democratic consituencies that probably saved a few jobs, but at a high price.

                          Here's the thing:

                          That bill was passed in February of 2009, before unemployment soared.

                          After that?
                          Crickets for a good long time.

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

                          by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 11:28:41 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Sorry, this is bunk. (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            annominous, skohayes

                            The stimulus was not what it should of been, but that was not possible to get a dime more out of the GOP and you know it. And your notion that it was a payback to Democratic constituencies is just another Right wing talking point, not a fact.

                            By January of 2009 job loss was the worst in 34 years:

                            Employers slashed another 598,000 jobs off of U.S. payrolls in January, taking the unemployment rate up to 7.6%, according to the latest government reading on the nation's battered labor market.

                            The latest job loss is the worst since December 1974, and brings job losses to 1.8 million in just the last three months, or half of the 3.6 million jobs that have been lost since the beginning of 2008.

                            The loss since November is the biggest 3-month drop since immediately after the end of World War II, when the defense industry was shutting down for conversion to civilian production.

                            Just to refute your idea that job loss was not soaring at the time the stimulus was passed.

                            "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                            by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 11:40:24 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  The stimulus bill was ill considered from the (0+ / 0-)

                            start and guaranteed to fall short.

                            As your quote states: unemployment in the mid 7s was the worst we had seen in years.  In the months to come, it would reach double digits, levels last seen in 1982. To this day, long-term unemployment remains at or near all-time records.

                            The worst thing about the bill is that it allocated a great big pile of poorly targetted money, and spent it before the magnitude of the problem was known.

                            Better deals could be had for a series of more focused bills, especially as the enormity of unemployment became clear.  Once you've dropped a $900 billion bomb, however, it's hard to go back for more.

                            Not that anybody cared to. They were too busy passing ACA.

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

                            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 12:17:07 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Like I said, (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            annominous

                            your denial of the extremity of GOP opposition---most obstructionist in history, by far, makes it difficult to have a reality based discussion with you.

                            "Better deals could have been had for a series of more focused bills..."
                            The thought of negotiating several stimulus agreements with this republican party reminds me of trying to negotiate anything from the debt ceiling, to the sequester. It often can't be done, and if it gets done it takes forever.  We didn't have that kind of time in early 2009. "Don't make good the enemy of perfect."

                            "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                            by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 12:38:28 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Excuse me? (0+ / 0-)
                            your denial of the extremity of GOP opposition
                            I don't recall denying that.
                            I do recall saying that Obama is no FDR and not even a Bill Clinton.

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

                            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 12:41:15 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You're continued supposition (0+ / 0-)

                            that if only Obama was FDR all would have been well, tell me you are in denial of the extremity of the GOP opposition, and the strength of it, as well as the importance of the context of the times in this discussion.  IMO, you can't grab a president out of the time line, plunk him in today and declare what he would or wouldn't have done.

                            Obama has passed 10 times the progressive legislation that Clinton did---perhaps that's your problem with him.

                            "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                            by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 12:56:49 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I can see you have no grasp on history. (0+ / 1-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Hidden by:
                            annominous

                            Come back when you've studied up.

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

                            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 01:55:57 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  LOL, when out of substance, (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            annominous

                            or come back, be sure to distract through insult.  Not playing that game.  Conversation is over.

                            "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                            by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 02:05:58 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I'll grant you that the Democrats possibly,... (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            skohayes, StellaRay

                            ...even probably, couldn't have gotten a larger stimulus passed.

                            But one critique I and some other people made at the time was that even if they couldn't have obtain a larger stimulus, no effort was made to do so. This was both a political and economic mistake. (As we guessed then but know now for certain, Christine Romer's idea of a larger—$1.3 trillion to $1.8 trillion—stimulus never got a hearing from Obama because Larry Summers didn't present it. To be fair, she didn't push it very hard.)

                            The economic reason for going bigger is obvious to all of us (whether we said so at the time or later came to that conclusion). The political reason, however, has been papered over with constant references to GOP obstructionism. But while there was, of course, such a blockade, one purpose of putting forth envelope-stretching proposals is to show voters what kind of legislation we and our party would push if we had the clout and will push when we obtain it. "Showing" our colors in this way, helps us convince more of those voters to choose us at the next election so we actually do obtain that clout and then can take the action we showed we support.

                            There was as well another debate dynamic going on in early 2009 around the stimulus. Many people (at Daily Kos and elsewhere) responded to the critiques about the stimulus being too small with claims that he could subsequently ask for another stimulus if the first proved to be too small.

                            This too was problematic, as some of us pointed out at the time. First, putting enough kick-starting money into the economy quicker can speed us into lift-off. But putting too little money in twice does not. Second, as I pointed out repeatedly in the winter and spring of 2009, a president (any president) has the most political capital during the first year of the first term. On something as big as the stimulus, a president only gets one bite of the apple. And that is exactly what happened, which still contributes to, but is not the entire
                            cause behind our current predicament.

                            Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

                            by Meteor Blades on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 02:21:51 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I so appreciate your analysis here, MB. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Meteor Blades

                            Your last paragraph particularly resonates with me, which is what I was trying to get to in my comment that a series of smaller stimulus bills would have been worse, and probably never happened.

                            However, I do believe that this president HAS faced unprecedented obstructionism. Heck, I don't even have to state it as my belief, it is simply unarguable fact. And so I get a bit famished when folks say, yeah, well there was obstructionism, BUT...

                            ...and then the burden of what today's GOP has done since this president put his hand on the Bible, which HAS been different than what any other president has faced, gets pushed to the side as a kind of sub point...when I think it's the better part of the whole point.  

                            Many reasons for this accepted obstructionism, not the least of which is this is our first black president, and I think many liberals were very naive about this in terms of just how many worms were going to crawl out of the wall accordingly.

                            Add to this the fact that we'd been living in GOP land for 3 decades, with Bill Clinton hardly making a dent in it, and in many ways celebrating those principles---repeal of Glass Steagall and passage of NAFTA, not to mention welfare. Then add 9/11 to that, something that shook this country to its toes and assured nothing would ever be quite the same, and that fear would be for a very long time, the best motivator.

                            When we suggest that Obama could have been better, smarter, more worthy, less wrong, that is of course correct, but it is also correct for every president.  

                            I don't write this comment as an Obama supporter who can't see the president's mistakes.  But then I've been around a long time, and I've never seen a president who didn't make mistakes, and more than a few of them.

                            Obama's achilles heel coming into office was imo, that he believed his "blue state, red state" speech at Kerry's convention more than anyone.  And that he saw his strength as building consensus, being a community organizer on a huge scale, and had no idea what he was in for in the first term of his presidency, and was slow to give up on what he thought would work.  This was indeed a matter of hubris, but certainly on the scale of new presidents, not at all out of the ballpark.

                            As for what to do with that all important first year of your first term as president, well...2009 surely gave Obama a plethora of crisis to choose from. He chose health care, although accomplished many other things as well.  I'm glad he did, but that's all up to one's personal priorities.

                            Thank you for hearing me out.

                            "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                            by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 07:33:35 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Mostly, I agree with what you've said here.. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            StellaRay

                            ...including about long-term obstructionism, which is worse now, and the racism.

                            I understand the matter of being practical and to compromise about what one puts forth so as to get something enacted, even if it isn't all one would like. My view, however, is that, ESPECIALLY when one is faced by folks who will obstruct no matter what one proposes, best to propose big so voters understand where you are really coming from, what you really want, what would be the laws of the land, the programs, if you had the support needed to make them so.

                            Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

                            by Meteor Blades on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 08:13:58 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I agree. (0+ / 0-)

                            And I think the president is also beginning to agree. I think in addition to being no dummy, he's also a very fierce competitor which means one must adapt to realities. He's had and will have to continue to overcome his own hubris about what he could achieve his way, and change his game plan.

                            But yes, in a world where they're going to obstruct no matter what you say why not go for broke---with this caveat. A new president may in many ways have more power than ever again, but he/she---someday the she, huh?---is also untested and unproven---imo nevermore so than in the crisis that Obama walked into, with a black face.

                            I do believe America has been center right for quite awhile, perhaps unconsciously and easily, given the lack of challenge of 9/11 or the Great recession, and maybe for all the wrong reasons, but the bulk of our legislation since Regan will tell you that is true. I think the pendulum is beginning to swing, and as a stalwart progressive, I too would like to see the president bat it a little harder.

                            But then every time I walk out of my blue bubble---friends, neighborhood, state and of course this beloved site---I see what he faces.

                            Nevertheless, learning fast is the prerequisite of any great leader.  I hope our president measures up.  I see signs he might.

                            Thank you for the conversation.

                             

                            "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                            by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 08:49:01 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                •  So the answer is to make everyone miserable (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  dinotrac, Heart of the Rockies, askew
                  •  Oddly, yes. (0+ / 0-)

                    We seem unable to care very much about those "other" people.

                    What?
                    They're out of work?
                    Losing their homes?
                    Can't take care of their kids?
                    Can't send them to college?

                    That's really too bad.

                    Now, let's talk carbon credits.

                    Spreading the pain might help.
                    Spread enough pain and it will help.

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

                    by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 06:04:44 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                •  HRd for promoting RW talking points (0+ / 0-)

                  There's always REDSTATE or Freepistan for that.

                  •  Stating facts is now hide ratable? (0+ / 0-)

                    Refute those facts or remove the HR.

                    •  Some of commenter's statements (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      annominous

                      have been far from facts. See some of my posts above for refutation.

                      "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

                      by StellaRay on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 11:19:27 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  HR for GOP talking points is appropriate. (0+ / 0-)

                      I will not remove it.

                      Your claim of 12M private sector lost jobs is without context; you fail to attribute those job losses and hard times to BushII; rather, you offhandedly express support for draconian sequester budget cuts (welcome to the club, public sector workers?).  Just Wow.

                      Your ill-willed remark toward govt workers is also a long-standing gooper talking point.
                      example with refutation example example

                      general refutation of idiotic rw talking points on govt employment

                      bs RW talking point  with refutation

                      Let's not detach Sequestration from its nominal problem, which, according to the goopbaggers, is the national debt and the current goopbagger manufactured frenzy toward reducing that debt (the debt will be more easily paid without an austerity program). This is also a RW talking point as is blaming Obama for an enormous share of that debt  debunked here.

                      Fugelsang, Oct 2012

                      GOP blaming Obama for the slow recovery is like John Wilkes Booth blaming Lincoln for missing the 2nd act of the play.
                      •  I'm through with you (0+ / 0-)

                        Anyone who would say something this dumb:

                        the debt will be more easily paid without an austerity program
                        is not worth the time to try to discuss anything with.

                        stop stalking me, please.

                        •  The debt will be more easily paid w/o austerity. (0+ / 0-)

                          The faster our economy can return to prosperity, the faster the nation's taxpayers can buy down the debt. That is, provided we don't get another goopbagger into the presidency. What's dumb is not recognizing that simple fact.

                          I'm not stalking you.  You can check the FAQ to clarify for yourself what the definition of stalking is.

                          I will continue to read and comment in APR and will continue to HR comments that push RW talking points, whether they are yours or any other RW troll whose currently hiding in plain sight here.

                          I will not reply to you again.

                          •  The do me the favor of reading the entire (0+ / 0-)

                            thread.. you seem to be homing in on my comments without looking at the context of the discussion.  We were talking about the recession in general in reference to public vs. private sector jobs - NOT the jobs that would be lost due to sequestration.

                            In that context, the public sector has had it pretty easy, feeling less than half the unemployment crunch of the private sector.  That is NOT a RW talking point,  It is a fact... go to BLS and find it for yourself.. I certainly won't be providing links for someone as free with donuts as you are.

              •  Public sector employees would most certainly (0+ / 0-)

                be in better shape.

                I don't like to see anybody lose their jobs, but I also don't enjoy seeing millions of lives destroyed and millions of people fearful that they will never again lead a decent life.

                I have despaired of anybody caring about those millions.  I've come to believe that stirring the pot and spreading the pain is about the only hope we've got left.

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

                by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:46:47 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  It's NOT just government jobs (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            tb mare, SoCalSal, Amber6541

            It's jobs all through the economy that are dependent on government grants or contracts -- mental health workers, Head Start teachers, public health workers, doctors doing cancer research, factory workers making stuff for the DoD or local police departments that's bought with Homeland Security money, the guy who delivers reams of copy paper and toner to the Congressional office back in the district, the barrista at the coffee shop near the Federal building in your city.

            In other words, the privatized government services -- suppliers, contractors, and grantees -- get hit just as badly, and probably more so because those are easier to not-pay than laying off unionized Federal employees who you know. Especially if you think it's going to be a short-term problem, you just delay anything you can.

          •  The problem is that these defense jobs (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            tb mare, Brooke In Seattle

            have little real investment return other than swirling money through the system.  The Military Industrial Complex isn't producing a sustainable future or renewable technology.  Just building more bombs is a waste no matter how many people get paid to do it.

            If we're going to spend taxpayer dollars then we should at least expect some kind of value like hardened infrastructure or better teachers.  Spending more money so defense contractors have jobs isn't prudent.

      •  They have the power at any point in time (0+ / 0-)

        to reduce the impact of these cuts, but they refuse to do so.

        I can categorically say there is at least 10% waste in any government program... at least in any cabinet department.

        The President could ask for, and get in an instant, the power to shift those cuts to wasteful programs.  But he, and Congressional Dems, are hell-bent on these cuts causing maximum harm to the maximum number of Americans.  So be it.

        The GOP "leadership" is a bunch of dishonest mopes  (and I'm being kind here).  They should be playing this aspect of the sequester to the hilt... giving real examples of wasteful programs that could absorb the cuts.  But they can't help themselves in that many of these programs are their own pork doled out to contributors.

        So we get the meat cleaver - because both parties are incapable of making our government more efficient.  So be it.. I'm loving this sequester thing more all the time for its impartiality in doing the job our government refuses to do.

        •  Pentagon has more than 10% fat (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          skohayes, Amber6541

          In fact, they don't even know where all their money goes -- so it could be 90% fat.

          I agree that in the long run, it would make sense to use a scalpel rather than a machete. But that requires hard policy-driven decisions, and often takes more time and therefore personnel to do the analysis required. And it's highly subject to pressure from lobbyists (that's why there's at least one big DoD contractor in every Congressional district).

          I believe some of that is already going on, as shown by the shrinkage in Federal jobs and government spending under Obama, which no one gives him credit for. Certainly they've publicly gone after Medicare fraud, for example.

          But doing it by enforcing a sudden 10% cut isn't likely to get you that kind of thoughtful strategic planning. It gets you the cuts that are easiest to make, and will be easiest to reverse, and will get you the political mileage you want.

          •  But, it is not sudden.. 18 months they have had. (0+ / 0-)

            For 18 months this has been planned!  They have done nothing!  The White House did not meet with Congressional GOP on this subject once since the beginning of the year.

            •  That's BS, (0+ / 0-)

              that they've done nothing and not met with GOP.

              Obviously, you seek to blame the White House and not GOP. You seem to be on the wrong website.

              We cannot mistake absolutism for principle, or substitute spectacle for politics, or treat name-calling as reasoned debate. -Pres. Obama, 1/21/13

              by SoCalSal on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 08:16:49 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Sorry if you cannot take the truth (0+ / 0-)

                Since you know it is BS, please provide me the links describing the meetings.

                President Obama has done nothing to avert this.  He has used this like he was in the middle of a campaign.. flying all around the country fear mongering- for political purposes.

                The Republican House and the Dem Senate have done nothing either.  But Obama is supposed to be the leader of the country, and all he's done is campaign endlessly, even though he already won an election a few months ago.

    •  IOW I'm one who WANTS a functional GOP (8+ / 0-)

      because the dysfunctional one we have today screws us all.

      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

      by Greg Dworkin on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 04:53:23 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Given that the US is not kind to new parties, a (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        skohayes, Bon Temps

        functional GOP would be nice.

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

        by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:11:41 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't know (0+ / 0-)

          It seems Libertarians are gaining steam with all these disaffected Republicans.
          Or that could be because I live out west, and there are a lot of "libertarians" out here. I put the scare quotes there because people are libertarian about gun rights and property rights, less libertarian about social issues (so they're not REALLY libertarians).
          I wrote a diary earlier in the week about Oklahoma reducing penalties for marijuana possession (small amounts) down a to a misdemeanor. And even though it failed, a medical marijuana bill was brought up for the first time.
          Oklahoma Loosens Marijuana Penalties

          Colorado, another state known for a lot of libertarians, just legalized marijuana for recreational and medical use.
          That would have been unthinkable a decade ago.

          “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 Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:47:08 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  small "l" libertarians.. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            skohayes

            not Libertarians.

            A lot of conservatives embrace libertarian concepts without linking tyhemselves to the Libertarian party.

          •  I don't believe that Libertarians can govern. (0+ / 0-)

            But I'm colored mightily by the Libertarians that I've met, and folks like Rand Paul don't give me great confidence.

            I view Libertarianism (is that right?) and Communism as soul sisters: each a beautiful idea made unworkable by the fact that we are stuck with plain old ordinary human beings.

            In my experience Libertarians (and communists, too, although it's been a long time since I knew any) lean toward the certain and unyielding, clinging to dogma as if it were the last lifeboat on a sinking ship.

            That makes for lousy government, which has to deal with the messiness of real people and their lives.

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

            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:53:25 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Rand Paul is a Republican (0+ / 0-)

              not a Libertarian. He has libertarian leanings in fiscal matters and is socially conservative.  He's also a registered Republican.

              “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 Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:59:00 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  My apology for using a capital "L", then. (0+ / 0-)

                He is a Republican Party member, but he is, most certainly, a libertarian.

                And that, by the way, is a great example of the thinking that makes me believe that libertarians are unable to govern.

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

                by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 06:06:51 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  No, he's not (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  davechen, dinotrac

                  What he calls himself ("Republican libertarian") and what he actually is are two different things. Look at his voting record.

                  “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 Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 06:41:04 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  ;0) OK. (0+ / 0-)

                    This is not worth an argument with somebody I like.

                    I have a funny feeling this ends up being a matter of where you draw the line between tomato and tomahto.

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

                    by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 10:50:23 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

  •  Interesting roundup, Greg, thank you! (12+ / 0-)

    Your APR is as essential as morning coffee to my day.  :)

    Do I miss LieberBush?  Naw.  I don't miss flies either, but I know they'll be back in the summer.

    Wonder if Republican constituents will call their reps and senators when they don't get their Social Security checks?  I'm quivering in my shoes at the thought of not getting mine.  It would be quite unpleasant.

    Depressing Tendencies Department:  Even supposedly "mainstream" TV networks are refusing to use "Democratic" when referring to representatives or the party itself. If Democrats were as nasty as the opposite party, we'd be referring to "Republic" congresspeople and the "Republic" party.

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

    by Diana in NoVa on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 04:48:16 AM PST

    •  You're on to something with calling (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DRo, Diana in NoVa, Eric Nelson

      the RW " Republics" because the term comes close to naming at least one nation we always keep a wary eye on.  I like the ominous ring to it and will be using it more and more because I plan to be nasty, as you say.  So should the media yakkers use it if they are going to be consistent about their false equivalencies.

      Thanks for the roundup, Greg.  And one has to ask why Paul Ryan hates the children and ignores all that deficit stuff they'll inherit, as though no other generation ever had.  

      Remedies:  single payer health care, increase in cap on income for SS taxation, investment in infrastructure, public/private partnership in demo/rebuilds of defunct housing, federal elections compliant with federal election laws and removed from the caprice of states,  low-interest loans to employee groups who buy failing businesses and run them themselves,  replacement of Eric Holder, etc.  

      Building a better America with activism, cooperation, ingenuity and snacks.

      by judyms9 on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:10:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  The GOP owns the sequester (9+ / 0-)

    Arguing about whose idea it was, in an environment divorced from the present context a la Bob Woodward, is silly. The important question is what is going to be done going forward

    -- The Democrats would not have put it in place, the Republicans are cheering it on.  The GOP owns it.

    -- The GOP now owns the economy.  It will go downhill - they own it, because this wouldn't have happened if they didn't force their policies.  They are forcing austerity at a time of a weak economy, something that has completely failed in Europe, and that we know will fail here.

    -- The deficits will get worse, as the economy sinks.

    The GOP says that all this pain is worth it, that losing jobs now will be compensated for by a lot more jobs trickling down in the future?  Somehow, I don't think the American People are impressed with this argument.

    The only way to get out of this ditch is to throw every single Republican possible out of office in 2014 as payback for what they are doing to our economy.

    "The only thing we have to fear - is fear itself." - Franklin Delano Roosevelt

    by orrg1 on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 04:52:22 AM PST

  •  Lieberman (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    elmo, salmo, skohayes, tb mare, askew, Eric Nelson

    fuck the USA for such petty reasons he should have a special circle of hell dedicated to him: the grandiloquent imbecile that fucked millions to massage his rotten ego circle.

    •  In that respect (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Desert Rose, tb mare, Eric Nelson

      how is he different from so many others up there in Congress. Take his good buddy John McCain, for instance.

      •  Well (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        skohayes, tb mare

        Has John McCain single handily blocked the expansion of a program that would help millions by his own party? Yes, I know its a tricky question because the GOP does not produce many a legislation that helps people.

        My point is Lieberman really screw the country by blocking the med 55 plus. That was the best part coming out of the damn whole ACA battle, in my view even better that the public option that was circulating. And why he did it. To spite people, out of pure egocentric malice.

         

  •  Is Klein where you guys want to be? (0+ / 0-)

    I was struck by this line:

    The idea that we can support America in 2025 with the tax code America had in 1975 is foolishness.
    If I were a Republican, I would look for ways to naill that to Democrats.  I would run ads, I would repeat it on talk shows.
    I would drop leaflets.

    Why?

    In 1975, Ronald Reagan was a private citizen.
    The Bush tax cuts hadn't taken place.
    The Reagan tax cuts hadn't taken place.

    The tax code was, for all intents and purposes, a Democratic tax code.
    Rates were notably higher for ordinary Americans.

    (An aside -- they also had a butt-stupid exemption for credit card and other interest, so, unless you guys restore that, even a return to 1975 tax levels would represent an increase over 1975 tax levels)

    Certainly higher than the tax rates that were high enough to make Democrats push eagerly for a middle class tax cut.

    In short, my message would be:

    "Girls and boys, you thought your taxes were going to go up? Well -- you ain't seen nuthin' yet."

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

    by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:01:33 AM PST

    •  How'd that work (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dinotrac

      For Walter Mondale. Better to do as O did. Promise no tax increases then work to raise them anyway. That's the way it's done these days.

    •  in a word, no (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      skohayes, belle1

      of course, no one has any clue these days as to who and what Reagan was.

      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

      by Greg Dworkin on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:19:29 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  in any case, Ezra is making the point that (6+ / 0-)

      promising over 65s that the budget will be fixed entirely by screwing under 65s is not a way to win elections.

      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

      by Greg Dworkin on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:20:35 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  It sure as hell isn't -- but Republicans are (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Greg Dworkin

        just stealing a page from Democratic playbooks and applying it badly.

        Democrats have long been fond of catering to the elderly.  We do, after all, tend to get out to the polls and vote.

        The problem for Republicans is that they are new to the game, are bad at it, and look like the clumsy opportunists that they are.

        The bigger problem is that the underlying assumption is wrong:

        We have kids.  We care about them.

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

        by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:26:20 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's not "catering to the elderly" (2+ / 0-)

          It's part of the platform to support not only the elderly, but also poor women and children, families, the disabled, etc.
          The problem for Republicans is that they're lying, and people can see that.
          It's ridiculous to say you want to protect Medicare and then hand it over to the states in the form of block grants- it's effectively the federal government washing it's hands of the program.
          And the reason they have to limit spending on Medicare and Medicaid is so they can pay for tax breaks and subsidies for oil companies and corporations.
          That's not protecting the elderly.

          “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 Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 06:10:11 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I would disagree with you on block grants. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            skohayes

            Different states have different problems and different problems in their medical care.

            Wanting a stronger state role is not a bad thing.

            But Republicans are lying and people can see it.
            They aren't supporting block grants as a way to improve Medicate -- which is too bad. They're proposing it as an initial wedge in demolition of the program, which is worse.

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

            by dinotrac on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 11:12:08 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  It isn't Obama who thinks he can persuade (8+ / 0-)

    anyone of anything; it's some of us. For the last four years, Obama has been denounced here for not using his "bully pulpit" to convince Republicans to do everything we want.

    I still say Republicans' nuts are in the vise, and it's tightening. Every day the sequester lasts, that vise is going to get tighter.

    This has nothing to do with the President's rhetorical powers, really. It has to do with the structural realities of the sequester. Obama is just out there campaigning to heighten Americans' awareness of those realities.

    •  The MIC in Virginia should be warming up the (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      skohayes

      tar and gathering the feathers for Cantor, shouldn't they?

      Building a better America with activism, cooperation, ingenuity and snacks.

      by judyms9 on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:21:58 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I agree, even though some in the media are (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hulibow, askew, Eric Nelson

      attempting to push the meme that the President is going to be blamed eventually, people like Chris Matthews for example, the public is seeing more and more that the hostage takers are the Republicans and their next hostage taking event will do even more to destroy them.

      You here people like Matthews, who is just so schizophrenic at times, and Joe Scarborough, crying: "the President is always campaigning" and "It's an eternal campaign". They see that the Republicans are being hurt by this and they just want the President to stop.

      •  I have to say the (8+ / 0-)

        "eternal campaigning" meme is ridiculous. PO is out there informing the people - us, who he works for, and he knows that hammering the facts to real people is how things might get moving. The piece of shit beltway media is just pissed because he refuses to cater to them. They have been actively trying since golf w/Tiger to sell PO as aloof & secretive and the Administration as blocking access - it's quite hilarious when you see how the outfits coordinate with each other to blast the public with their latest negative portrayal. Throw in Woodward & they glob onto that false story because it fits their agenda, or did until the facts came out - hahaha.

        Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up. A. A. Milne

        by hulibow on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:57:28 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Ezra Klein.....so basically what you're saying is (0+ / 0-)

    that the GOP is all tactics and no strategy?

  •  How can the sequester indirectly affect Congress.. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skillet, Amber6541

    I was just wondering if we could have a little fun thinking up ways the Sequester could indirectly screw up the smooth workings of Congress... hehe..

    Something on the line of a shortage of Govt Limos.
    Or maybe a power outage that has no electrician available after hours to fix it.
    A paper shortage for all those printers.

    What can you come up with?

    "I think it's the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately." -- George Carlin, Satirical Comic,(1937-2008)

    by Wynter on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:30:08 AM PST

  •  Thanks for APR Greg (5+ / 0-)

    I got nothing. The whole dysfunction junction of our government makes me very blue.

    Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up. A. A. Milne

    by hulibow on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:36:36 AM PST

  •  Sequestration could have been avoided (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Desert Rose, salmo, Brooke In Seattle

    had the WH not given up its leverage on taxes at the end of December.  Republicans held tough and won.  Democrats caved and lost.

    Lesson still not learned.

    www.buonoforgovernor.com

    by Paleo on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 05:41:35 AM PST

    •  LOL (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      askew, Amber6541

      So Obama just lets all the tax cuts expire, including those on the middle class, plus reinstate the temporary payroll tax cut? Just so he could have "leverage" now?
      As I recall, it was the first time Republicans passed a tax increase since Obama was elected.
      And if he had waited until now to negotiate the Bush tax cuts, what about when the next debt ceiling hostage crisis comes up? Then we'd have people complaining because Obama lost his negotiating power in the sequester fight.

      “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 Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 06:29:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  He did lose his negotiating leverage (0+ / 0-)

        That's my point.  The tax increases wouldn't have had to kick in on Jan 1 because Treasury could have delayed changing the withholding tables.  

        www.buonoforgovernor.com

        by Paleo on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 08:01:36 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Sequester in advance (0+ / 0-)

    It is not true that the sequester will take time to have an impact. From everything I've read, even before the Feds have decided exactly where the cuts will fall, EVERYONE who gets any Federal money has been behaving as if their entire allotment is going to disappear. NIH isn't sending out money, and isn't making new grants, so anyone with an NIH grant is putting off hiring and preparing for layoffs, and so on all down the line. Defense contractors don't know how badly they'll be hit, so they're laying people off now. Not all of those cuts will be needed in the end -- it's not a 100% government shut-down, only 6% or 8% or whatever (I've seen lots of different figures -- no one seems to be able to do the basic math). But the uncertainty -- which will continue through the summer as we have at least two more manufactured crises to get through -- makes everyone freeze up and cut back to the bone.

    So actually the immediate impact is the worst possible case, which should plunge us into severe recession very quickly. Will that lead to people storming their GOP representatives' offices demanding they do something? I doubt it.

  •  Danish Muslims Defend Free Speech of Anti-Muslim (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skillet, Amber6541

    extremist. Now that's good news. I posted about it here.

  •  Changing Minds After Newtown (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wintergreen8694, belle1

    http://www.nytimes.com/...

    ad campaign and web site

    Here is Jon and Rebecca’s big idea: They want to create an anti-violence organization — a “brand,” they call it — that will appeal to gun owners and nongun owners alike. “When you talk to gun owners, if your purpose is to make them feel bad, they will push back,” said Jon, “and you will lose them.”

    “But,” chimed in Rebecca, “when you reframe the issue as ‘how can we save lives?’ the conversation shifts. Responsible gun owners and nongun owners both want to save lives. They have that in common. The end goal is to save lives.”

    As advertisers and marketers, they had both worked with the liquor industry, and they had seen how outside pressure — from Mothers Against Drunk Driving, for instance — could change the larger culture so that once-acceptable behaviors became unacceptable. They had also seen how the industry had ultimately participated in safe drinking campaigns.

    "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

    by Greg Dworkin on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 06:56:32 AM PST

  •  Ezra Klein's Poli-Sci George Edwards rhetoric (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Greg Dworkin, Amber6541

    I think the story is lightly behind the bend on this on. Obama fully understands that his use of rhetoric won't influence or persuade Republicans in Congress. His use of rhetoric is geared at making sure Democrats and center-left leaning independents turn out in force in 2014. So his flying around the country isn't Clinton's 1995 "fly around the country to build consensus" it's more like Bush's 2001 fly around the country to "get conservatives geared up to push for the Iraq war."  I think Obama has given up on persuading Republicans and his use of rhetoric has changed to reflect that.

    -1.63/ -1.49 "Speaking truth to power" (with snark of course)!

    by dopper0189 on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 07:05:56 AM PST

    •  agree, but to me article is aimed (0+ / 0-)

      at the ron fournier and david brooks of the world complaining that Obama didn't fix everything with eladership.

      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

      by Greg Dworkin on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 07:09:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Congress can't delegate the power of appropriation (0+ / 0-)

    Long before enough sequester cuts go into effect long enough to make any difference to the economy, I expect that the whole issue of making any such cuts will become tangled up in the courts.

    I'm not a lawyer, much less an authority on constitutional law, and I haven't read any of the text of the sequester law.  But just on general principle, I can't imagine the sequester law could possibly have been written in enough detail to allow the administration to make the cuts needed without opening to serious legal challenge its decisions on what to cut and what to keep.  

    The legal requirement to pay out, in full, every item in the appropriations bills, will be quite clear.  But I can't see that the sequester law could possibly have delegated to the administration the power to rescind appropriations in enough detail to make the delegation allowable, and not an unconstitutionally broad delegation of something Congress can't delegate, the power of appropriation.

    And it's not as if this constitutional issue is one of those purely theoretical points that the courts, political bias aside, tend to avoid.  With cuts this big and broad, all sorts of parties, many with plenty deep enough pockets to fund serious legal challenges, will be in a position to claim that they have been harmed unlawfully by the administration's decision to not pay them whatever the original appropriations bills said they are owed.  It's not as if the sequestration cuts harm no one, or no one in particular, so that there are no particular parties who can claim direct harm.  There will be very definite victims, parties harmed by the administration deciding not to pay them.  Even if it wanted to, I can't see how SCOTUS avoids being sucked into this, and quickly after just about any cuts.        

    The states must be abolished.

    by gtomkins on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 10:39:27 AM PST

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