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July 27, 2011

Comments

Melinda Romanoff

Oooh, Rep. Blumenauer (D-Ore) says NO ONE has actually seen Reid's plan, no details. Nada. (via Drudge)

So just what did the CBO "score"?

Thomas Collins

Mel, the Congress has to pass it before they'll be able to figure out what's in it. Just ask former Speaker Pelosi.

Danube of Thought

I did a one-eighty, made a heartfelt apology and they did what?

The "they" is one guy, and I was right the first time--it's Dana Ward of Pitzer College.

Belarus Bytes

JMH and DOT,

My apologizes to DOT if I gave the impression that I was trying to put words into his mouth. I was merely trying to make a point and could have used any number of the many commenters here for doing that.

But thanks for the welcome. I hope that I can be part of the solution and not part of the problem.

Jane

Ex, that just heightens Kristol's argument. The only thing that matters is election day, because we can't do a thing until then.

They say the Tea party is turning on Boehner. So far I'm not.

DrJ

I hope that I can be part of the solution and not part of the problem.

We chemists say that if you are not part of the solution, you are part of the precipitate.

/*ducks*/

Melinda Romanoff

TC-

Right.

I did get that memo but turned it over and fed it back into the printer for Sudoku.

Rick Ballard

Extraneous,

The comment re $9.5 trillion is both correct and very specious. The CBO utilizes a "best guess" regarding inflation at the core of their analytical models. They utilize a similar "best guess" as the basis for their models of GDP growth. The Congressman seems to suggest that pure static analysis would derive some sort of "truth" concerning today's cuts and tomorrow's budget but he's engaging in simplistic sophism to make a wholly unremarkable point. IOW - if you go to the 10 year "result" of the CBO model's analysis and apply the reciprocal deflator, you're going to arrive at a net effect close to the amount of the first years cut times 10 due to the removal of the magic of compounding.

The CBO is already bound by too many Lilliputian static analysis ropes as it is, removal of their ability to guess inflation/GDP growth factors would lower their utility of existence to the point where we shouldn't bother to feed them any more tax dollars.

I could support that cut - if it were accompanied by similar cuts at all the other government guess factories. They all exist to obfuscate rather than clarify.

Extraneus

Welcome Belarus.

glasater

Jennifer Rubin says:

Boehner has momentum

Jack is Back!

OT:

Today we cleaned out a Loggerhead sea turtle nest on the beach. Just in our area we have about 20 sea turtle nests. This one had a lot of little ones that didn't hatch the other night and make their walk to the sea.

About thirty were still either in their eggs or breaking out. So the Turtle Patrol came by this morning to show the kids (and adults) the new babies and let them walk them down to the ocean:

jimmyk

Jim,
Each dollar of debt that is redeemed will lower the outstanding public debt by a dollar.

I don't follow this argument. If the SS Trust fund reduces its assets, that raises the (net) indebtedness of the US. Just as if I take money out of the bank and spend it on beer, unless I spend it to pay off other debts, my net asset position is diminished.

I think it's correct that hitting the debt ceiling should not prevent SS payments, but that's only because my understanding is that there is enough revenue coming in to cover both that and debt service.

narciso

Irony, yadda, yadda, you know the drill, in the LUN

JM Hanes

DoT:

"Nothing meaningful will be done unless the GOP has the WH and both houses of congress in January, 2013. Any short-term concession that advances that goal is highly desirable; any short-term victory that retards it is crazy."

I agree, although I think taking the Senate is even more important than taking the White House. Without his Congressional enablers, Obama can be largely neutralized. A Republican Congress might also prove far more willing to take back the vast regulatory powers that they have ceded to the Executive Branch, if there's a Democratic Prez in office.

We may be approaching the crazy threshold, but I don't think we've quite crossed it yet. Pushing Boehner off the cliff would certainly qualify, though.

Hitching spending cuts to the debt ceiling vote has proven to be the most effective leverage that Republicans cost cutters have had at their disposal in years. While we cannot expect to make fundamental structural changes (like reforming the tax code or eliminating whole bureaucracies) till we control both houses of Congress, this exercise demonstrates just how much we can accomplish even when we don’t.

If nothing else we have reshaped the playing field in ways that will serve us well. Tax hikes barely even register in the current equation, and the relationship between overspending and crushing debt has been firmly planted in the public zeitgeist. It will, however, remain nothing else, if the intransigents insist on making a last stand before the real battle we need to win begins.

Danube of Thought

If we don't get the White House, we'll have Obamacare forever and a Supreme Court that will run wild.

Check out this dude: "Are you kidding me?"

Porchlight

I love to imagine Flathead in sort of a Kurtz role in Heart of Darkness, only far more clueless/naive. He travels to a remote location in China, thinking he will be treated as a demigod, only it never quite takes off and they eat him alive.

rse

jib-

The first summer after we finished the house in Fla, my youngest announced she remembered the crabs on Cape Cod and wouldn't walk on the sand. Needless to say, the pool seemed like a better option.

Just after sundown I was standing on a walkover and realized there was something dark, oval, and moving right by the shoreline. I went down and it was a huge sea turtle. I ran back to the house and yelled to the kids to come down to see.

Ms. Would Not Let the Feet Touch the Sand never hesitated as she ran to see the turtle.

Almost as exciting as the manatees showing up the summer before last when none of my neighbors were on the beach. They came down later and refused to believe me. Thank goodness a second round of the critters showed up that day to prevent a reputation for tall tales.

Belarus Bytes

My apologies if this has already been covered but has anyone laid out what departments and/or services would be affected in the event the debt ceiling is not raised assuming that interest and principle, SS/SDI, and military personnel payments were given first priority? If it's been covered, I'd appreciate a pointer in the right direction.

Porchlight

I agree that ousting Obama is the absolute goal. However, I'm not going to denigrate Tea Partiers. We need to persuade, not antagonize, so using words like "crazy" and "intransigents" really doesn't serve the larger purpose imho.

jimmyk

He travels to a remote location in China, thinking he will be treated as a demigod, only it never quite takes off and they eat him alive.

LOL--if these clowns would ever get out of their echo chambers they might discover that not everyone awaits their every pronouncement with bated breath. Somehow this reminds me of the poor shlub who got kidnapped and murdered by his beloved Palestinians. Not a laughing matter, of course.

Extraneus

OT: More cupcakes in the news...

Denver police are searching for a man they say robbed a cupcake store armed with a syringe.


Chubby

((I wouldn't risk a thing on this debate if it hurt the chances for 2012.))

alienating the Tea Party is also a risk

Captain Hate

Somehow this reminds me of the poor shlub who got kidnapped and murdered by his beloved Palestinians. Not a laughing matter, of course.

Humor is subjective.

JM Hanes

DoT:

"If we don't get the White House, we'll have Obamacare forever and a Supreme Court that will run wild."

A Democratic White House has still to get its nominees through the Senate, and there are only so many bills a President can veto if Congress dismantles Obamacare piece by piece by piece -- especially when his spinning has spun out.

I'd obviously rather have both the Senate and the White House, but a Democratic Majority of No in the Senate could see to it that a repeal of Obamacare, in whole or part, not to mention structural reforms of any other kind, never even make it to the President's desk -- on top of derailing a Republican President's Supreme Court nominees as well.

Extraneus

For when daddy checks in:

Lockerbie Bomber Appears at Pro-Qaddafi Rally

Porchlight

alienating the Tea Party is also a risk

Exactly, Chubby.

Does anyone believe that absent the Tea Party, we would be having this fight? No. The debt ceiling would have been quietly raised weeks ago in accordance with Obama's wishes. That we are even discussing spending cuts at all is remarkable and a direct result of Tea Party victories.

Porchlight

has anyone laid out what departments and/or services would be affected in the event the debt ceiling is not raised

I don't believe so. Just scaremongering from the usual suspects.

Belarus Bytes

Thanks, Porchlight

JM Hanes

Porchlight:

Crazy might not have been my personal choice, but I was, in fact, saying that I don't think it applies to what's been done so far and was pointing out how much has been accomplished.

I think intransigent is an appropriate word, though, when you've got 11 Congressmen who have sworn outright that they will not vote to raise the ceiling under any circumstances whatsoever (along with another 10 presumptive nays). Even if it were inaccurate, it doesn't even compare to the kind of routine denigration of more flexible positions in these threads. I think failing to pass a bill would have disastrous consequences for us in 2012, and I'm not sure how we would be better served if I kept that opinion to myself. I suspect that's exactly what Boehner is saying to his caucus, but per Ignatz' earlier suggestion, I'll reserve my exclamation points till after the votes have been taken.

That said, however, I do agree that trivializing Republican efforts with talk of emotional spectacles and "bickering" and all the other dismissive pejoratives now in circulation woefully undercuts our own team and our very chances at success both now and in the 2012 polls. That’s really been a stunning thing to watch.

Jane

alienating the Tea Party is also a risk

I dunno, I think I am as much a tea partier as anyone. One of the big things about us is that we don't walk in lockstep. I'm not alienated by either side of the argument. I want to hold out for real cuts, substantively, but think the smarter move is to deal with the issue politically. YMMV (and that is the point)

Captain Hate

Tammy Bruce is skewering the RSC members who are whining about Jim Jordan employing non Duke & Duke approved lobbyists to arm twist them into making Boehner toughen up his bill. Also "my friends" seems to be leaving the reservation; yes, shocking.....

Extraneus

The 1995 shutdown might give an indication of what sorts of things wouldn't be paid without a debt increase:

A 2010 Congressional Research Service report summarized other details of the 1995-1996 government shutdowns, indicating the shutdown impacted all sectors of the economy. Health and welfare services for military veterans were curtailed; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stopped disease surveillance; new clinical research patients were not accepted at the National Institutes of Health; and toxic waste clean-up work at 609 sites was halted. Other impacts included: the closure of 368 National Park sites resulted in the loss of some seven million visitors; 200,000 applications for passports and 20,000 to 30,000 applications for visas by foreigners went unprocessed each day; U.S. tourism and airline industries incurred millions of dollars in losses; more than 20% of federal contracts, representing $3.7 billion in spending, were affected adversely.[6]"
Btw, an oft forgotten fact about the MSM politics:
Clinton's approval rating fell significantly during the shutdown. According to media commentators, this indicated that the general public blamed the president for the government shutdown.[7] However, once it had ended his approval ratings rose to their highest since his election.

During the crisis, Gingrich made a complaint at a press breakfast that, during a flight to and from Yitzhak Rabin's funeral in Israel, Clinton had not taken the opportunity to talk about the budget and Gingrich had been directed to leave the plane via the rear door. The perception arose that the Republican stance on the budget was partly due to this "snub" by Clinton[8] and media coverage reflected this perception, including an editorial cartoon which showed Gingrich having a temper tantrum.[9] Opposing politicians used this opportunity to attack Gingrich's motives for the budget standoff.[10][11] Later, the polls suggested that the event damaged Gingrich politically[12] and he referred to his comments as the "single most avoidable mistake" as Speaker.[13]


Porchlight

Gotcha, JMH. My chief concern going into 2012 is just what you described in your last paragraph. The Dems want to divide us and we should not be indulging them.

centralcal

Captain: From NRO on what reportedly occurred this morning as it pertains to Jim Jordan:

Notably, Rep. Jim Jordan (R., Ohio), chairman of the Republican Study Committee, opened the meeting by apologizing for a series of e-mails sent by an RSC staffer urging outside groups like Club for Growth and Heritage Action to pressure undecided members to oppose the plan. Rank-and-file members, many of them members of the RSC, were none too pleased to find themselves on the list of targets. There were several calls for the offending staffer to be fired. Much of the meeting was devoted to the controversy, which merely underscores the intra-party tension that has been simmering over the past several weeks.

Meanwhile, however, the opposition bloc led by Jordan appears to be crumbling, as leadership’s message seems to be sinking in. Sources tells NRO that a number of members who were confirmed no votes against the Boehner plan announced during the meeting that they would be voting yes. One of those members, Rep. Blake Farenthold (R., Texas) told reporters that while he would like to “snap my fingers and change the world like ‘I Dream of Genie’ of Samantha on ‘Bewitched,’” Republicans “need to take what we can get.”

Belarus Bytes

Based upon the Wikipedia article Extraneus excerpted, it does not seem like that there would be cataclysmic consequences for most people in failing to raise the debt ceiling. Of course, for people seeking medical treatment, military veterans and clinical research patients, and laid off government employees it would be a catastrophe which can not be minimized, but for most citizens it seems like it is more inconvenience than anything else.

Since I'm thousands of miles away, I have no sense of the general mood in America other than what I read on blogs, but does this have the potential to wind up like the Minnesota state shutdown which was just resolved?

Melinda Romanoff

Cap'n-

Have a free agency update site.

Many hats being thrown around.

Why anyone's thinking of Moss is beyond me.

Appalled

What you are seeing in the House is a similar dynamic to what happened when Pelosi got Obamacare passed, and the Kucinich types gave up their opposition. Nobody wants to be the guy who brings down a party's signature initiative because of insignificant purity.

Captain Hate

cc, the only potential problem I have with Boehner's bill is that if it isn't strong enough on cuts to stave off a Moody's downgrade, the JEF will have an opening to state that he compromised with the eeeeeevil Repubs in good faith (LOL) and look what happened anyway. Needless to say, it would be self-serving garbage but receive the full blessing of the MFM

Captain Hate

Why anyone's thinking of Moss is beyond me.

Always a bigger fool available, Mel.

Thomas Collins

If US loses top rating by the rating agencies, it will be interesting to see who is ranked above the US. I'll bet most or all of those who retain the top rating are less creditworthy than the US. In any event, if the market wants to still take seriously the folks who rated the mortgage backed securities so highly, God bless 'em!

JM Hanes

Extraneus:

Newt's role in shooting Republicans in the foot certainly accords with my own recollection. He started upping the Congressional pomp & circumstances ante almost immediately upon taking possession of the Speaker's gavel. He even redesigned the uniforms of House functionaries to his own grandiose specifications.

On the mechanics of the shutdown, I think it's worth noting that causing maximum public pain and outrage was a (typical) strategic White House priority. The most interesting thing about that list today, however, is that a SS stoppage wasn't on it. I have almost zero doubt that Clinton would have held those presses if he could have. It would be interesting to know whether the putative endangerment of SS was included in his rhetoric.

Janet

Here is a good Dennis Miller rant on Pelosi/Reid.

Thomas Collins

I realize, by the way, that's it's more complicated than the market. If a trust indenture requires that investments the proceeds of which will pay debt service on defeased obligations be held in AAA securities, US Treasuries might no longer qualify as investments to be put in defeasance escrows subject to such an indenture requirement. That in itself shows what BS the rating agency talk is. If your bonds are being defeased with investments, would you want the Treasuries securing your obligations liquidated and replaced with other investments simply because the rating agencies weren't satisfied about the debt cap deal? As I said, what BS.

matt

The Lockerbie bomber was released in order to grease the skids for a big oil deal BP was working on with Libya at the time. This is the way the world works these days. The multinationals dial private numbers in the various capitals around the world and the deeds get done.

Forget about justice and the rule of law and doing the right thing. At that level it no longer exists. And that is how the game is played and why so much of the kabuki is meaningless.

Forget it, Jake. It's Chinatown.

Melinda Romanoff

CH-

I don't think the ratings agencies have given themselves an out for what they've brought about.

Which is trying to elevate their relevance, IMO.

Chubby

((Forget about justice and the rule of law and doing the right thing.))

same in the stock market. Forget that the company sells millions of a useful or a good product, if its quarterly numbers are a tad below what the analysts expect, down down down go the shares. I used to believe investing meant more than just money in, money out, and I still believe it should be, but it never has been and never will be

Melinda Romanoff

Holman Jenkins, in today's WSJ, covers just what the raters are up to, and who they're working for.

Very insightful.

Ben Franklin

Heh.

"The "they" is one guy, and I was right the first time--it's Dana Ward of Pitzer College."

There's yer 'heartfelt' apology, mild-mannered lurker.

It's the way they do things, not the things they do.........

Heartfelt negotiations on the debt limit fare about as well

Captain Hate

Mel, but don't they also have a floor under which they can never fall; or at least aren't very likely to? Or am I missing something?

Chubby

that's amazing Melinda, I was just going to post a few minutes ago, but decided not to, my concern that the ratings agencies might be pushing political outcomes

Mikey

A question, isnt there another budget fight later this year on the continuing resolution that allows the possibility for more budget cuts?

Jane

This from Megan McCardle. Interestingly enough my broker called this morning with the exact same opinion.

My reading of what the ratings agencies have said is that if the GOP somehow manages to force the Democrats to do everything their way, this will not secure our AAA; it will guarantee that we lose it, because it will show that we are currently unable to make the ugly bipartisan compromises that long-term budget balance requires, and raises the risk that sometime in the not-very-distant future, the other party will retaliate by threatening default. That's what Wall Street cares about. Not saving social security. Not lower spending. They just care about getting enough consensus to keep the checks flowing.

Captain Hate

Thanks for pointing that out, Mel; I hadn't gotten around to reading that....

Rick Ballard

Mikey,

There's the actual '12 budget to be passed. I suppose that might count.

Cecil Turner

I don't follow this argument.

The debt limit constrains the total debt--the black line--which is the sum of the actual public debt (the red line) plus the "intragovernmental debt," or money the government owes to itself (mainly, the SS trust fund). Because monies in the trust fund are already counted as debt, if you borrow a dollar to spend on SS, it doesn't change the total (just moves the red line up toward the black).

Belarus Bytes

BF,

Assuming that I'm the mild-mannered lurker (and no, I don't change into Superman later on), you must remember that when trust and respect have been lost, it takes a long time to recover it.

From my lurking, it is apparent that you neither trust or respect most commenters here and vice versa. If you seriously want to engage in dialogue, then you need to consistently demonstrate that you can engage others without the rancor. By elevating yourself, you lower those who continue to snipe at you.

Will you continue to receive denigrating comments? Of course, but if you can demonstrate a consistent level of discourse, then perhaps you will gain some measure of trust and respect.

I was taught eons ago that a debate is a series of arguments and that an argument is a conclusion with a reason for believing it. You present many conclusions of others that you either link or cut and paste as well as your own, but I am not seeing the reasons for believing them. Again, I'm just a simple guy and while some truths may be self-evident, the ones you present are not, at least to me.

Ben Franklin

Durable goods...you know. the stuff manufacturers need to make stuff?

Demand for factory goods slips

Lucia Mutikani and Mark Felsenthal
Reuters US Online Report Business News

Jul 27, 2011 15:21 EDT

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Demand for long-lasting U.S. manufactured goods fell in June and economic activity across much of the nation slowed through mid-July, casting doubt over how quickly the economy might escape its soft patch.


The Federal Reserve said on Wednesday the recovery lost steam in eight of 12 regions it tracks in recent weeks, with hiring modest, wages soft and price pressures subdued.

"Economic activity continued to grow; however, the pace has moderated in many districts," the Fed said.

Separately, the Commerce Department said weak receipts for transportation equipment pushed down durable goods orders 2.1 percent last month after a 1.9 percent increase in May. A closely watched reading on business spending plans also fell.

Excluding transportation, orders edged up just 0.1 percent.

"We're getting confirmation that this is more than just a soft patch in the first part of the year, that it's a more fundamental slowdown triggered in part by the political environment and jittery markets," said Michelle Meyer, an economist at Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

Economists said the drop in the so-called core category of factory orders that is used as a proxy for business spending plans was troubling and could yield slower growth in spending by businesses on equipment and software in the third quarter."


Where are the jobs Mr Boner? Ten years of Bush Corporate Engineering has not produced, as promised (surprise! fooled y'all again, heh) and after 30 years of Reaganomic false promises, makes perfect the sea of lies which populate this economic philosophy.

Cecil Turner

That's what Wall Street cares about. Not saving social security. Not lower spending. They just care about getting enough consensus to keep the checks flowing.

If so, they're idiots. They can't possibly "keep the checks flowing" for more than a few years without entitlement reform, and the Dems are assiduously blocking even a discussion of that. I'd also note this gets harder to fix every year, and that a AAA rating to enable continued reckless borrowing and spending is at best a mixed blessing.

Melinda Romanoff

Jane-

Go back up to my Holman post, it ain't all what it seems.

CH-

Remember my bringing up Morningstar the other morning? Well, as of 18 months ago, they weren't even IN the ratings business. Now they own a third of it. How old are Fitch, Moody's, and S&P again? Perhaps not so nimble any more?

Also, Morningstar rates debt now the same way they do for any other piece of research, for the primary benefit of the individual investor. That institutions subscribe to them is testament to their value.

They remember that there are customers out there, something lost on Wall Street, where the raters live.

And, no, I am NOT an employee. Just a fan.

Melinda Romanoff

ValJar on CNBC right now.

Babbling platitudes.

They are desperate, and the sweat stains are starting to show.

Captain Hate

Mel, indeed I remember and am heartened by the upward mobility of Morningstar in a field with what I would imagine to have huge barriers to entry and is otherwise populated by ossified entities best described in geologic terms.

JM Hanes

Belarus Bytes:

"Since I'm thousands of miles away....."

Are you actually in Belarus? And if so, what are you drinking? :-)

Danube of Thought

Unexpected:

"Washington - Orders for U.S. durable goods unexpectedly dropped in June, raising the risk that a slowdown in business investment will weigh on the world’s largest economy in the second half of the year. Bookings for goods meant to last at least three years fell 2.1 percent after a 1.9 percent gain the prior month that was smaller than last reported, the Commerce Department said today in Washington."

Jim Rhoads a/k/a vnjagvet

On Fxnews, however, Shep Smith is hysterically predicting doomsday if the Pubs continue with the Boehner Plan. Juan takes up the cudgel and says El Jefe laid a trap for the GOP and they have fallen for it, citing "my friends".

Smith is at his Katrina worst trying to foment panic in the streets. Why does this guy get 2 news slots on FXnews?

Belarus Bytes

JMH -

I'm not able to get the CBNC link to work, but I assume Belarus is among the top 15. All that I can say is that it is well deserved, especially if it only considers vodka drinking. :)

Jane says obamasucks

I had to turn it off Jim. Those two should be taken out and forced to join MSNBC.

Jim Rhoads a/k/a vnjagvet

I now have my earphones on, Jane listening to Mozart Piano Concertos on Napster. It calms me down.

Cecil Turner

Where are the jobs Mr Boner?

Nice try, but don't the Democrats run the White House and Senate? I remember how the Dems ran against the party "in power" in 2008 because they only ran both houses of Congress (into the ground). And did you catch the "unexpecteds" in the durable goods stories? Hilarious.

Extraneus

If the Republicans don't cave and accept tax increases, what's the absolute worst thing that could happen? A clean, short-term debt limit raise?

If that's the end result, Boehner can come out and truthfully say: "They wouldn't agree to real spending cuts, and they were adamant about raising taxes. Both positions are irresponsible, but this is the reality: The 2010 elections weren't enough to allow us to put our finances in order, so we'll just have to fight it out in 2012. The future of the country is obviously at stake."

What's so bad about that? None of these long-term cuts are real anyway.

Captain Hate

Btw, Allen West on Tammy Bruce tomorrow.

Cecil Turner

Should've updated before posting. I hate when somebody beats me to it.

jimmyk

if you borrow a dollar to spend on SS, it doesn't change the total (just moves the red line up toward the black).

Got it, sorry, I'd misread the guy to be claiming the total actually went down. Of course, only the government could get away with this kind of accounting.

Incidentally, from my scan of the budget numbers, debt service plus SS, Medicaid, and Medicare come to around $1.8T, or roughly $150B/month, while revenues are about $200B/month. "Security" (mostly defense, I presume) is about $70B/month, so they couldn't quite cover all that, but they might be able to cover military pay. And that's without the accounting maneuver with SS.

Jack is Back!

Mel,

The good news is the Jets are getting Moss - the both deserve each other. I hope he turns out to be a bigger blowhard pain in the ass nitwit that Rex. The NFL version of Dumb and Dumber and when you add Sanchez you can add Dumbest.

Jim Rhoads,

I am no Smith fan and don't watch him any more but then at least Fox and Ailes live up to their slogan "Fair and Balanced". Smith is much more a "heart on his sleeve" liberal than say Scarborough is a ranting right-winger.

Mikey

According to Charlie Gasparino, Administration was worried about a debt downgrade since March. What have they done?

Rick Ballard

"So just what did the CBO "score"?"

Mel,

The CBO scored this Reid proposal which the Congressman in question must have inadvertently missed.

I thought King Putts declared ownership of the economy some time ago? Didn't we have some video links recently of him seizing control in 2009? Perhaps he tossed the durable goods rattle off his high chair.

Melinda Romanoff

Rick-

Thanks for clearing that up.

Janet

Juan takes up the cudgel and says El Jefe laid a trap for the GOP

How good can this make Dick look? Is Juan saying this whole doomsday, scare tactic was the Dick's idea? He told Americans that maybe they wouldn't get their SS checks...just to trap the GOP?

Jim,MtnViewCA,USA

"I don't follow this argument."
(LUN)

Cecil Turner: "Because monies in the trust fund are already counted as debt, if you borrow a dollar to spend on SS, it doesn't change the total (just moves the red line up toward the black)." (with nice charts)

That is my understanding too.
SSAdmin cashes a bond, the debt goes down. Cash goes to some SS recipient. The cash drawer of the US Gov is emptier.
Then they sell a new bond. The debt goes up, but no higher than before. The cash drawer is replenished.

Same amount of debt, just that the debt-holders have changed.

Janet

and Extraneus's 4:01 post sounds good to me.

Extraneus

The good news is the Jets are getting Moss

Where'd you hear that? I know they signed Holmes, didn't think they were looking for another receiver unless they're planning to let Edwards go.

Btw, you're pretty negative on the Jets, huh? A Dolphin fan, by any chance?

Melinda Romanoff

Ex-

And it looks like the fins are going to get The Beard from Purdue, Orton.

Janet

The Debt Ceiling Problem explained in 90 seconds.

mojo

Washington Monument Syndrome

Stop issuing SS checks? Yeah, sure.

How about we stop putting out federal paychecks instead? That might garner some attention inside the beltway.

Jim Miller

Perhaps even more important is that Obama appointees are running our federal bureaucracies.

For instance, you can agree or disagree with what Lisa Jackson is doing at the Environmental Protection Agency, but you can't argue that she isn't costing us jobs -- short term.

(I think long term, as well, but that is, I agree, less obvious.)

Extraneus

Haven't seen that either. I did see that they're talking to Asomugha, though. He and Revis would be quite a pair at the corners, but I don't see how they can pay all these guys.

Chubby

((Perhaps he tossed the durable goods rattle off his high chair.))

my visual: Obama in a high chair, wearing a baby bonnet, screaming blue murder, refusing the peas on the proffered spoon labeled: COMPROMISE WITH GOP

glasater

ValJar on CNBC right now.

Babbling platitudes.

Saw the interview, Mel. Maria B wasn't buying and kinda cut her off.

Jane and Jim-

CNBC has some really great commentary going and much more up to date info presented than Fox. Except I do like Charlie Gasparino on Fox Bus but he isn't on regularly.

Danube of Thought

From CNN Money:

Danube of Thought

Letting Edwards go just means fewer dropped passes.

BB Key

That explains it.....Paul Teller the RSC staffer who was responsible for yesterday's firestorm is a Dookie

Captain Hate

Brainless Edwards needs to get off the sauce; he has classic alcoholism signs.

Sara (Pal2Pal)

The Norway shooter may have privately or in his writings professed he was a Christian in his private life, but he killed in the name of politics and hate, not in the name of Christ. Muslims, OTOH, kill in the name of Allah, and they have been brainwashed since birth that Allah wants them to kill, kill, kill. In fact, I was taught in my childhood that murder/killing is the one sin God will not forgive, since forgiveness requires restitution and there is no way to restore a life after you've killed.

When I was growing up, we had Protestants, Catholics, Jews, Mohammedans, Confucians, Hindus, and Buddhists. Christian was somebody who lived during Roman times until Jerry Falwell and his Silent Majority came on the scene and suddenly we added Christian, meaning Born Again Christian. I was at lunch one day with several coworkers and the Silent Majority came up and one of the women said she didn't get the overt speak of these Christians. Someone said they thought she was a Christian and the speaker became irritated as she snapped, "I'm not a Christian, I'm a Presbyterian." The whole table nodded in understanding.

Janet

"I'm not a Christian, I'm a Presbyterian." The whole table nodded in understanding.

Understood what? What does that mean?

Danube of Thought

I agree with Ext at 4:01. These "cuts" are just window-dressing, and there's not a dime's worth of difference among the various proposals. The steady march to the cliff will be continued until entitlements are reformed, and they won't be reformed unless the GOP pulls the hat trick in 2012.

Extraneus

No kidding, DoT. He made a few key grabs, but had at least an equal number of heartbreaking misses, such as right in his hands in the end zone. Well, not heartbreaking for the haters like Jack.

Nice to have football back.

jimmyk

Which is trying to elevate their relevance, IMO.

Isn't there a potentially more serious problem that they are doing the bidding of the administration? To what extent does their relevance depend on those currently in power? Axelrod et al could be playing the "Hail Mary" option of instigating a crisis and hoping that it blows up on the Republicans, as at this point the administration doesn't have much to lose.

Mark Folkestad

Sara, I was brought up in the Lutheran Confession, first the old (Norwegian) Lutheran Free Church, then the American Lutheran Church after the merger, and finally the ELCA after the last merger. Never did I not understand that Baptists, Anglicans, Presbyterians, Methodists, Roman Catholics, Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox, Copts and others were all members of the greater Christian community. The term "Christian" was not some odd term finally brought out of a storage cabinet to describe "born agains". But I do understand that in some groups, in some areas, "Christian" was not commonly used.

Porchlight

Lisa Murkowski is one of the 50 most beautiful people on Capitol Hill, according to The Hill today.

That is funny because to me she looks like Gollum. Or at minimum, Smeagol.

Melinda Romanoff

jimmyk-

Holman Jenkins covered that today and I linked it here.

Jane says obamasucks

On Cavuto someone was saying that the tax hikes have already happened and they were all in OBamacare, and they get phased in every single year. let's not forget about that.

I too like Charlie Gasperino Glasator.

Did anyone see Dick Durbin on CNBC this morning? Apparently he lost it.

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Wilson/Plame