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July 07, 2011

Comments

Melinda Romanoff

Hence the massive influx of refugees from North Korea.

Janet

The NY Times reports that illegal immigration from Mexico is down,

Why should we believe this?...sounds like something the left would push to make Americans settle down about illegal immigration.

Melinda Romanoff

Maybe the Administration can do something to help the border states.

Oh, that's right.

They already did.

centralcal

Sorry to go way off topic so soon, but another small piece of the jigsaw puzzle that was Obama's life has surfaced. Memos have surfaced indicating that Obama Sr. claimed Obama Jr. was being given up for adoption to the Salvation Army.

Wonder how The Won takes that news?

---------

Back on topic:

At the same time, educational and employment opportunities have greatly expanded in Mexico.

Really? Where?

Melinda Romanoff

Ccal-

Cartels always have hiring programs, high turnover for some reason or another.

Janet

Yeah, centralcal...that jumped out at me too.
Sourcing for these claims seems a little vague - research points to and A growing body of evidence.

Captain Hate

O/T Per narc, I picked up the Vasquez book at the library just a few minutes ago, which they just got in. This should be an enjoyable read.

jimmyk

Yeah, even if it's established that there's less illegal entry, the idea that "research" has established the causes is pretty funny. I mean, it's not like the NYT would have any agenda to draw attention away from Obama's putrid economic performance as the driver.

Ignatz

--Crossing “mojado,” wet or illegally, has become more expensive and more dangerous, particularly with drug cartels dominating the border. At the same time, educational and employment opportunities have greatly expanded in Mexico.--

Barry triumphs again.
All the people heading north were turned around, given as many AKs as they could carry and headed south of the border again.
There is no problem that man can't solve.

Captain Hate

Oh c'mon jimmyk; I'm sure Jayson Blair has done lots of research into this area that's at least as legit as some of the howlers the trolls come up with.

narciso

Good to know, Captain, we're having the same kind of dreary weather that JiB, had last week, when I first read "History' in Spanish,
I wasn't that impressed, but when I picked it up recently I liked it better.

narciso

Doug 'American Apartheid' Massey, and the non partisan Pew Center, I tell you what could
possibly go wrong, specially since they don't include a hyperlink to the report in question.

Janet

centralcal, Thanks for the link to the ongoing saga of Obama's sketchy life. I'm always interested.

Clarice

I'd put the lack of jobs here as number one on my list of reasons why illegal immigration from Mexico is tapering off.

Janet

OT - a little glimpse into our local insanity - Proposal to Tax Plastic Bags Doesn't Go Far Enough

This was in our free local paper.
A taste -
"Finally, we should tax manufacturers and retailers for using plastic tags to inform customers of prices.
The clothing items I purchased had those terribly dangerous half-inch plastic tags that can kill your child if you leave one, or half of one, on the floor and he or she swallows it."
Bold mine.

Captain Hate

Yeah I'm pretty impressed that the Boston Globe is basically conceding that Preznit Entry Level is the product of a polygamist lowlife.

Extraneus

AP, on the desperation wagon, scraping the bottom of the barrel for DOTUS.

Study: Medicaid does make a difference after all

Signing up for Medicaid could improve your overall health and financial security, says a surprising new study that offers clues on how President Barack Obama's health care overhaul might affect millions of low-income uninsured Americans.

The findings run counter to a widespread perception that having a Medicaid card is no better than being uninsured, and maybe even worse.

Wow! Medicaid makes a difference, for low-income people, compared to being uninsured!

Thanks to Obama?

Appalled

OK guys. You all are so down on the Obama Administration, that you do not realize their utter brilliance. You read TM's post, you realize that immigration is down because North Mexico has become drug gang central.

Now think. Y'all have been reading, I'm sure, about operation Fast and Furious. They said this was to find out about who was using US guns in Mexico. Now, we know that's a lie. But, now we have the real reason. Obama -- with an IQ approaching Einstein and a subtlety approaching Machavelli -- was just finding a new way to cut immigration by helping make North Mexico a no go zone!

You know, we just need to stop complaining, and be glad we have such a sublime genius running the country. Because there is just no way we can outthink this guy. None.

Rick Ballard

"I'd put the lack of jobs here as number one on my list of reasons why illegal immigration from Mexico is tapering off."

That's number one. The depression in home building has removed a very large segment of the illegals. The second factor is the rapidly falling birth rate in Mexico. The rate of decline sharpened steeply 15-20 years ago and we're seeing the results. The third factor is that Pew misconstrued the "influx" data ten years ago and is still trying to get their cloven hooves out of their mouths.

Plastic Soldier

More silver linings..

Moderate Voice

Yes, the GOP has taken a hard right turn. Cap and trade? Health care insurance mandate? The EPA? Unpaid-for wars? Racking up a huge deficit? All are originally Republican ideas which Republicans are now against. And when I say “now against,” I don’t mean they are now for a more liberal alternative. The GOP is now for nothing. In French it’s called laissez-faire. In English it translates into “let it be” or “lazy.” In American politics it means “a do-nothing Congress none of us approve of.”

The House cannot go any further to the right. America’s top 1 percent has twice the net worth of the bottom 80 percent. Add to that — we don’t even ask the uber-super-rich to pay much in taxes. Bloomberg News/Businessweek put it like this: “It may seem too fantastic to be true, but the top 400 end up paying a lower rate than the next 1,399,600 or so.” And the House passed the Ryan Budget Plan (another symbolic vote), lowering taxes on the top brackets even more, shifting the burden to the rest of us and forcing seniors to “choose” their health care “options.” This is a “plan” that still won’t cut the deficit or balance the budget (but will raise the debt ceiling – hint).

The GOP tried to peg President Obama as a radical socialist when he really just turned out to be a moderate pragmatist. So now Congress has to be against everything a moderate pragmatist is for… which ends up meaning their platform is — NOTHING.

Melinda Romanoff

Appalled-

Astute, when put that way. Sorta like Dennis the Menace results.

Danube of Thought

Minus 15 at Raz today.

Janet

Here is Jack Cashill's latest on BHO Sr's birth-date switch.

Ignatz

Appalled,
Expect a cease and desist letter and copyright infringement suit from my attorney, re my 9:35 post. :)

Cecil Turner

Per the article, the number one reason was education:

Still, education represents the most meaningful change. The census shows that throughout Jalisco, the number of senior high schools or preparatory schools for students aged 15 to 18 increased to 724 in 2009, from 360 in 2000, far outpacing population growth. The Technological Institute of Arandas, where Angel studies engineering, is now one of 13 science campuses created in Jalisco since 2000 — a major reason professionals in the state, with a bachelor’s degree or higher, also more than doubled to 821,983 in 2010, up from 405,415 in 2000.
Which seems like unalloyed good news to me. (The fact that much of the progress was sparked by a tequila boom should also appeal to many here.)

BB Key

Janet,
Frank Sharry ex dir of America's Voice just verified your 8:59 post on the Diane Rehmm Show on NPR .

narciso

I'm reminded by that AP slug, how the NBER
'backdated' the last downturn, in ways tht would have made Enron proud, in order to fix
the blame on W. so pfui on them,

Plastic Soldier

Cookie cutter diplomacy; These are not 'democratic' reformers.


EU lawmakers call for more sanctions on Syria

REUTERS
Reuters US Online Report World News

Jul 07, 2011 10:22 EDT

STRASBOURG, France (Reuters) - European Union lawmakers called Thursday for EU member states to impose more sanctions on Syria's government to force it to end a crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators.


In a resolution on recent upheaval in North Africa and the Middle East, legislators in the European Parliament also said the EU should help Turkey and Lebanon set up a humanitarian aid corridor to assist refugees fleeing the violence in Syria.

"The Council (of EU governments) should continue to extend targeted sanctions to all persons and entities linked to the (Syrian) regime with the view to weakening and isolating them, paving the way for democratic transition," the lawmakers said.

Syrian activists say security forces have killed more than 1,300 civilians since unrest against President Bashar al-Assad began three months ago.

In response, Western governments have imposed rounds of sanctions against Assad and his inner circle in an effort to cut off his sources of funding and end the violence.

The EU has already banned Assad and other officials from traveling to the bloc, and frozen their assets, and has targeted military-linked companies.

But some of the bloc's 27 governments have in the past questioned the effectiveness of punitive measures against Assad, urging a gradual approach instead.

EU lawmakers, holding a regular session in Strasbourg, expressed concern over rising violence in Syria and said Europe should provide more humanitarian aid to victims, with thousands having fled to neighboring states.

The parliament called on EU governments and the European Commission immediately to provide aid and support to the Turkish and Lebanese authorities to manage the humanitarian crisis -- including by setting up an aid corridor at U.N. level.

The European Parliament also expressed concern at the situation in Libya, particularly over food shortages and a lack of medical assistance, and called on EU governments to make cash available to rebels of the Transitional National Council (TNC) fighting Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.

Last month, EU foreign ministers agreed to look into using frozen Libyan funds to assist rebels, who have long sought access to Libyan money in foreign accounts affected by western sanctions against Gaddafi.

"The European Parliament ... calls on EU member states to act urgently to make part of the frozen Libyan assets available to the Transitional National Council... so that emergency needs can be met," deputies said.

jimmyk

I can't imagine that the improved education had much impact on illegal immigration. First, we're talking about a few hundred thousand students from a population of 111 million. More important, I'd suspect that those people getting professional degrees were not the same demographic pool as those trying to get across the border to get jobs as dishwashers and farm workers.

Now if the Mexican economy is growing strongly, that would be a positive reason. From what I've seen, 2011 is much better than 2010, but it's still a matter of relative economic opportunities for unskilled labor in the U.S. versus Mexico.

Melinda Romanoff

narciso-

NBER always revises its data on GDP for up to 3 years, FYI. Nothing sinister about the economy rolling over in 4Q of '07, the data was always there.

Jane (Slippery Dick Hussein Obama) sucks

Yeah I'm pretty impressed that the Boston Globe is basically conceding that Preznit Entry Level is the product of a polygamist lowlife.

WEll it indicates he was born in Hawaii - so I suspect that was part of the motive.

A Perspicacity for Mendacity

Booman;


Strange Movement in Debt Limit Talks
by BooMan
Thu Jul 7th, 2011 at 10:45:38 AM EST

Things are getting a bit interesting in the debt limit negotiations. On the eve of a big meeting to discuss a grand deal in the White House, the administration was able to produce pieces in the Washington Post and the New York Times that tout their willingness to put everything on the table.
As part of his pitch, Obama is proposing significant reductions in Medicare spending and for the first time is offering to tackle the rising cost of Social Security, according to people in both parties with knowledge of the proposal.
Mr. Obama, who is to meet at the White House with the bipartisan leadership of Congress in an effort to work out an agreement to raise the federal debt limit, wants to move well beyond the $2 trillion in savings sought in earlier negotiations and seek perhaps twice as much over the next decade, Democratic officials briefed on the negotiations said Wednesday.
For whatever reason, this is what the administration wanted people talking about when they sat down this morning with their Republican counterparts. This is how they wanted to control the political environment. Naturally, rumors that the president wants to cut entitlement programs, including Social Security, are going to make Democrats foam at the mouth with rage. But that's apparently something the president doesn't mind because he thinks he'll get something valuable in return.

Leaving aside the prospect that the president might actually sign a bill with cuts to Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, he wants to leave that impression this morning. He wants his base angry and calling for his head.

And, I think, the only reason for him to do that is to shame the Republican leadership for their cowardice. Now, is this something that the administration sprung on Boehner at the last minute, or an announcement culminating from their private negotiations?

I can't say. So, I won't overreact.

What I know for certain is that the Republican are getting wobbly on their anti-tax pledge, and this will make it even harder for them to maintain their position.

What's missing is a ton of detail. Most importantly, what unannounced goodies would come with such a package? How would it be sweetened for Democrats? And what's the long-game and short-game?

Cecil Turner

I can't imagine that the improved education had much impact on illegal immigration. First, we're talking about a few hundred thousand students from a population of 111 million.

That data is from Jalisco, population ~7 mil, and that first bit of data is for senior high and prep schools, which I would think covers much of the population in question.

Ranger

Hot Air has a good post up that adresses the argument that the problem is revenue, not spending:

Do we really have a revenue problem?

Some very nice graphs from Heritage. But this pretty much sums it up:

While revenues have tripled during this period, federal spending has more than quintupled. The economic expansion of the 1990s (including the dot-com bubble) temporarily raised revenue above the spending trendline, but the slope on spending increased in the early 2000s, and practically launched spaceward in 2007 when Democrats took control of Congress.

As the graphs point out, even with the current loss of tax revenue from the recesion, if we cut spending back to 2000 levels, we'd have a ballanced budget today.

Mortimer Chortle


Steve Benen

July 07

"When ‘flexibility’ is not what it appears to be
Reuters caused a stir late yesterday when it reported, “Republicans have tentatively agreed to between $150 billion and $200 billion in increased revenues in budget talks, Republican Senator Jon Kyl said on Wednesday.” Around the same time, the Washington Post said House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) has signaled “flexibility on tax loopholes” as part of debt-reduction talks.

Reader M.J. alerted me to this Associated Press piece with an almost comical headline: “As GOP shows flexibility, Obama adopts hard tone.” (It’s this kind of ridiculous thinking that leads Mark Halperin to call the president a “dick” on national television.)

What in the world are these media outlets talking about? Well, it appears some reporters are a little confused, or at a minimum, taken in too easily by misleading rhetoric without paying attention to the details."

Media; details; Heh.

caro

Jane. Punctuation!

Cecil Turner

In an article entitled "Romney's Right: It Is Worse Now," IBD provides the only election metric that matters:

There are 2 million fewer private-sector jobs now than when Obama was sworn in, and the unemployment rate is 1.5 percentage points higher.

daddy

G'mornin'.

Yay, It's the Year Of The Money!

Finally I am able to make a valuable contribution to JOM's Economic commentary! Stand aside, Rick, Melinda, Jimmy K, etc...

Just got a chain letter from one of my Chinese Bar gal's. Josie sez:

"THIS IS THE ONLY TIME WE WILL SEE AND LIVE THIS EVENT
Calendar for July 2011

MONEY BAGS

This year, July has 5 Fridays, 5 Saturdays and 5 Sundays. This happens once every 823 years. This is called MONEY BAGS. So, forward this to your friends and money will arrive within 4 days. Based on Chinese Feng Shui. The one who does not forward.....will be without money."

(Me personally, I didn't know the Chinese all those centuries ago had a calendar based on a 7 day week with Leap Years etc, but what the hay, long as "money will arrive within 4 days" and we all get rich, who cares, right?)

But there's more! Josie also sez:

"This year we're going to experience four unusual dates.

1/1/11, 1/11/11, 11/1/11, 11/11/11 and that's not all...

Take the last two digits of the year in which you were born - now add the age you will be this year,

The results will be 111 for everyone in whole world. This is the year of the Money!!!"

Yippee!, 2011, the Year of The Money! (It's not till next year that it's the Mayan year of catastrophe), So bet on Red all you 111'ers and let the good times roll, and while you're raking in the moolah I'll see if Chinese Astrology can predict the Series.

PS---Josie and Feng Shui include a caution:

"The proverb goes that if you send this to eight good friends money will appear in next four days as it is explained in Chinese FENG SHUI.

BUT THOSE WHO DON"T CONTINUE THE CHAIN WON'T RECEIVE...."

So I'm hitting Forward on my MacBook Laptop, just like Lao Tzu told us to 823 years ago.

Gong Xi Fa Cai! (pronounced Gong She Fow Chy)

(Gong Xi (恭禧) is congratulations or respectfully wishing one joy.)
(Fa Cai (發財) is to become rich or to make money.)

Clarice

Janet, reading the free local paper letters to the editors is, I find, a fast way to find those citizens most in need of mental health treatment,

narciso

I find the Booman, to be David Brooks, of the nut roots. they are such an easy mark, like Charlie Brown with the football, with the attendant chiropractor bills.

My point, is that bank crisis, from 1837, aer precipitated by a indentifiable event, and the Lehman crackup was it, the boom was slowing down in the fall of the previous
year, which was what led to Bear Stearns fall.

Mortimer Chortle

2012 will be the Year of the Dragon and it's hot breath
will blast the American Political Landscape with capitulation.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/in-debt-talks-obama-offers-social-security-cuts/2011/07/06/gIQA2sFO1H_story.html

Imagine the scenario; GOP chooses vanilla and a Tea-Party split raises up a challenger. Obama is challenged
at the Convention, is nominated by a short-hair, and a 4th party emerges.

Set US back 200+ years.....

narciso

Meanwhile, 'snorfle' at the Bidenicity, required to support this statement, on a recent NPR broadcast:


STENGEL: Well, of course the high court did prohibit the use of alcohol as an amendment, and then that was overturned. I’m not sure that the Constitution says very much about that. But if you look at the use of alcohol and medication, you know, state courts right now, you know, have the predominant opinion about that. And if the states can legalize marijuana, as some states have, then, you know, that’s – you should probably live in one of those states.

Mortimer Chortle

"I find the Booman, to be David Brooks, of the nut roots. they are such an easy mark, like Charlie Brown with the football, with the attendant chiropractor bills"

See? Simple declarative sentences.....Much more effective.

Melinda Romanoff

Bear was sold (3/08) well before Lehman blew (9/08), and after the slowdown started (9-12/07).

The rise of sub-prime defaults was what precipitated the collapse of the over-leveraged debt market, which then triggered the liquidity trap that did the above. It hit the first bottom in 3/09, specifically, with the 666 low print of the SP on 3/6/09, and no, I'm not making up that number.

Ranger

The Cleo droppings for the last few days really do indicate Axelrod's desperation at the moment. The relentless focus on the "need for tax increases" and a "ballanced approach" to solving the debt limit "crisis" really highlight the corner Obama has painted himself into.

In 2008, Obama ran promising "net spending cuts." Today, he has to beg for yet another increase in the debt limit, after signing off on the largets increases in Federal spending in history. Obama's problem is that between 65% and 75% of the public don't want the debt limit raised.

So, Obama's only way out of this politically is to convince Republicans to somehow do two things that will kill their party in the 2012 cycle, raise the debt limit, which is unpopular with the entire electorate, and raise taxes, which will demoralize the Tea Party.

Obama's effort to promise spending cuts in the future for tax increases now, is the last gasp of flailing by the administration. Obama made the same promise with Obamacare, and he broke it right away. All the Republicans have to do is point out that Obama promised the impliment the automatic spending cuts Medicare that are already law to keep the cost of Obamacare under $1 trillion (since he promised to veto any bill that increased the deficit), then promptly signed off on the "Doc Fix" to keep those cuts from going into effect. Any promises from this president on future spending cuts are empty.

Captain Hate

STENGEL: Well, of course the high court did prohibit the use of alcohol as an amendment

Was that Casey "Can't anybody here play this game" Stengel ruminating on what was a current event from the great beyond?

Mortimer Chortle

Cisco;

Carle questions..

http://emptywheel.firedoglake.com/2011/07/06/scott-horton-glenn-carles-captus-is-pacha-wazir/

Captain Hate

So, Obama's only way out of this politically is to convince Republicans to somehow do two things that will kill their party in the 2012 cycle, raise the debt limit, which is unpopular with the entire electorate, and raise taxes, which will demoralize the Tea Party.

Again, I wouldn't bet against that strategy being efficacious against the party that ran McCain in 2008.

Janet

Janet, reading the free local paper letters to the editors is, I find, a fast way to find those citizens most in need of mental health treatment,

Hah! Well, I appreciate her letter because it pushed my husband a little further into the conservative camp!

Ranger

And IBD has a pretty good recap of how much worse Obama has made things (via Instapundit):

There are 2 million fewer private-sector jobs now than when Obama was sworn in, and the unemployment rate is 1.5 percentage points higher.

• There are now more long-term unemployed than at any time since the government started keeping records.

• The U.S. dollar is more than 12% weaker.

• The number of Americans on food stamps has climbed 37%.

• The Misery Index (unemployment plus inflation) is up 62%.

• And the national debt is about 40% higher than it was in January 2009.

In fact, reporters who bother to look will discover that Obama has managed to produce the worst recovery on record.

Yep, quite a record for him to run on there.

JIM CROW; "I'M BAAAAAAACCCKKKK !!!!

Rhode Island governor signs voter ID bill

Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee signed into law a bill that would require voters to show identification at the polls in 2012, with a photo required before casting a ballot in 2014, his office announced on Wednesday.
“Having reflected a great deal on the issue, I believe that requiring identification at the polling place is a reasonable request to ensure the accuracy and integrity of our elections,” Chafee, an Independent, said in a statement.
“Notably, I spoke with representatives of our state’s minority communities, and I found their concerns about voter fraud and their support for this bill particularly compelling,” he added.
Under the new law, poll workers will ask voters for identification beginning in 2012, and a number of non-photo documents such as a Social Security card or birth certificate will suffice for them to be allowed to vote.
In 2014, however, any identification will need to include a photo. The state will provide free photo identification, and provisional ballots will be made available to anyone without the proper documents.

Janet

Janet,
Frank Sharry ex dir of America's Voice just verified your 8:59 post on the Diane Rehmm Show on NPR .

BB Key, Do you mean the NYT just made it up?

Threadkiller

Why risk a closed border when you can be open at home?



Mexico Supreme Court rules in favor of recognizing same-sex marriage in all 31 states

"Looks like Mexico is taking a hint from California.

The country's Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that all 31 states must recognize same-sex marriages performed in the capital.

The 9-to-2 decision does not make it mandatory that the states begin marrying gay couples though and does not go into detail about what marital rights must be recognized.

Lawmakers in Mexico City, the nation's capital, passed same-sex marriage legislation that was enacted in March, giving married gay couples the right to adopt children, jointly apply for loans from banks, inherit money and be covered by their partner's insurance plan."


Oo La La!

Want Vs Need

No Dealing On The Debt Ceiling, Part 29

Posted by Zandar

Time's starting to run out on the default clock, folks. Recent moves this week by both Republicans and Democrats are giving rise to speculation that a deal is imminent. BooMan for example sees Orange Julius folding like a lawn chair in a tornado.

Boehner will have to capitulate. It's his responsibility to pass something that the Senate Democrats will endorse and that the president will sign. That's his job. Unless he wants the U.S. to default on its debts, he has no choice.

On the other hand, John Cole agrees with the notion that Boehner cannot back down without being replaced in the GOP leadership by the Tea Party fanatics.

The insane people are running the party, and now morons like David Brooks and the “reasonable Republicans” are like “WTF happened” when they were the ones fluffing the nutters for years. Even assuming there are Republicans left in the house that really are not insane enough to default the government, an assumption I am simply not willing to make, they are terrified they will lose their job like the other tens of millions of people suffering from Republican policies, because the teahadists will primary them.

I think both of them are missing the point, which is just how much the Dems have already surrendered to these nutbags.

Any deal that involves entitlements will have Republicans pounding the President and Democrats on the air screaming DEMOCRATS CUT YOUR MEDICARE AND SOCIAL SECURITY just like in 2010, and it is a battle the Democrats will lose and lose badly. I'm not sure why Obama is bound and determined to do this, but there you are.

Why are we negotiating at all? Katrina vanden Heuvel has the right idea. Obama needs to pull out the 14th amendment card, and he needs to do it now.

Doing so will give him the leverage he lacks in the debt-ceiling negotiations. Right now, Republicans’ willingness to let the economy default, consequences be damned, gives them enormous leverage. But presumably, if a deal is not reached by the deadline, and the president is forced to exercise his constitutional obligation, Republicans will get nothing at all. Not the trillion dollars in cuts already agreed to. Not the additional trillion in cuts they are seeking. The threat, alone, of invoking the 14th Amendment defuses the bomb Republicans have strapped to the hostage.

Rob Crawford

JIM CROW; "I'M BAAAAAAACCCKKKK !!!!

The Rhode Island legislature is controlled by the Democrat Party, so for the first time you may be right!

jimmyk

Cecil, my presumption is that the reporter was cherry-picking the best numbers. The "few hundred thousand" referred to the number with a "bachelor's degree or higher." It's unclear how many of those just moved to Jalisco from other areas. I don't doubt that things are getting better in Mexico (away from the border), but from the article it sounds like that improvement has been going on for a while, while the deterioration in the U.S. has been more recent.

Stephanie

RE Mexico, don't forget that Mexico is into deep water drilling and shallow water drilling and all those drilling rigs in the Gulf of Mexico that moved from US waters had to go somewhere... as did the jobs.

Obummer is not dumber than Dumbya

Naked Capitalism

THURSDAY, JULY 7, 2011
Debt Ceiling Hypocrisy
Cross-posted from Credit Writedowns

President Obama is not the only debt ceiling flip-flopper. During the Bush administration, when a budget surplus tuned to deficit and debt piled up, Republican leaders in Congress voted to raise the debt ceiling 5 times, increasing the limit nearly $4 trillion. We’re talking about Speaker John Boehner, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl. Combined, they voted 19 times for a debt ceiling increase without complaint or conditions.

June 2002: Congress approves a $450 billion increase, raising the debt limit to $6.4 trillion. McConnell, Boehner, and Cantor vote “yea”, Kyl votes “nay.”

May 2003: Congress approves a $900 billion increase, raising the debt limit to $7.384 trillion. All four approve.

November 2004: Congress approves an $800 billion increase, raising the debt limit to $8.1 trillion. All four approve.

March 2006: Congress approves a $781 billion increase, raising the debt limit to $8.965 trillion. All four approve.

September 2007: Congress approves an $850 billion increase, raising the debt limit to $9.815 trillion. All four approve.

So, what happened? Republicans went from being the party aligned with the President to being the opposition party attacking the President. That’s how politics works.

My view:

Republicans will show extreme opposition to any stimulus, any bailouts and may look to rescind the healthcare bill already passed by whatever means necessary. Likely, stimulus is out for good now. The Obama Administration clearly understands it made a tactical error in predicting a more robust economic outcome while bailing out the financial sector. This has left it in a bind because they are trying to argue that the stimulus prevented depression when (the U-6 measure of)underemployment is still 17%. I anticipate the Obama people will change tack because the Republicans will beat them over this. It is not clear yet what they will do in order to demonstrate their ‘for and by the people’ stature. However, I have speculated that the Administration will become even more conciliatory toward the financial sector (which feels aggrieved because of populist rhetoric) in order to deflect Republican criticism about being anti-business and to protect their previous policy decisions.

Rob Crawford

LUN: the idiots of "LulzSec" wanted to punish Arizona law enforcement for daring to enforce US immigration law and instead ended up leaking information supporting tougher enforcement of US immigration law.

Idiot left-wing script kiddies should stick to WoW in their mother's basement.

Rob Crawford

Crap. Forgot the LUN.

Rob Crawford

Obummer is not dumber than Dumbya

Then where are his college transcripts?

Face it -- Barak Ostumble is dumb as a post. He's incapable of stringing three words together unless he's being run like a puppet.

Obummer is not dumber than Dumbya

Reuters


By Richard Cowan
WASHINGTON | Thu Jul 7, 2011 7:26am EDT
(Reuters) - A small team of Treasury officials is discussing options to stave off default if Congress fails to raise the country's borrowing limit by an August 2 deadline, sources familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.

Senior officials, including Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, have repeatedly said there are no contingency plans if lawmakers do not give the U.S. government the authority to borrow more money.

But behind the scenes, top Treasury officials have been exploring ways to prevent a financial meltdown that would be triggered if the government were unable to pay its bills on time, sources told Reuters.

Treasury has studied the following issues:

- Whether the administration can delay payments to try to manage cash flows after August 2

- If the U.S. Constitution allows President Barack Obama to ignore Congress and the government to continue to issue debt

- Whether a 1985 finding by a government watchdog gives the government legal authority to prioritize payments.

The Treasury team has also spoken to the Federal Reserve about how the central bank -- specifically the New York Federal Reserve Bank -- would operate as Treasury's broker in the markets if a deal to raise the United States' $14.3 trillion borrowing cap is not reached on time.

The U.S. government currently borrows about $125 billion each month. The Obama administration wants Congress to raise the limit by more than $2 trillion to meet the country's borrowing needs through the 2012 presidential election.

The contingency discussions, which have remained a closely guarded secret throughout weeks of negotiations with Congress over the debt ceiling, are being led by Mary Miller, Assistant Secretary for Financial Markets, who is effectively custodian of the country's public debt.

Miller's team has debated whether Obama could ignore Congress and order continued borrowing -- by relying on the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution -- if it fails to raise the borrowing cap.

The fourth section of the 14th Amendment states the United States' public debt "shall not be questioned." Some argue the clause means the government cannot renege on its debts.

Obama dismissed talk of invoking the amendment on Wednesday. "I don't think we should even get to the constitutional issue," he said. "Congress has a responsibility to make sure we pay our bills. We've always paid them in the past."

HINT OF PLAN B COULD HURT TALKS

The White House declined to comment on the discussions at Treasury, but administration officials sought to tamp down talk of relying on the 14th Amendment.

There has been growing speculation in Washington in recent days that the administration could use the amendment to ignore the congressionally imposed limit on the amount of money the United States can borrow.

"Despite suggestions to the contrary, the 14th Amendment is not a failsafe that would allow the government to avoid defaulting on its obligations," said White House spokeswoman Amy Brundage.

Miller's team has discussed the Government Accountability Office's 1985 assessment that Treasury has the authority to prioritize payments in the event of a default -- an option Treasury officials have been wary of.

The administration's nightmare scenario is that investors panic at the prospect of a default, triggering a crisis that eclipses the 2008 financial meltdown. That could plunge the U.S. economy into another recession, something that could doom Obama's re-election prospects in 2012.

Some conservative Republicans have argued the Treasury can prioritize payments and manage a default. The administration wants to keep lawmakers focused on the August 2 deadline, and even a hint of a "Plan B" could lessen the urgency to strike a deal by then.

"As we have said repeatedly over the past six months, there is no alternative to raising the debt limit," Treasury spokeswoman Colleen Murray said when asked to comment on the Treasury discussions.

"The only way to prevent a default crisis and protect America's credit-worthiness is to enact a timely debt limit increase, which we remain confident Congress will do."

BB Key

Janet,
Frank Sharry said (paraphrase): Since illegal immigration is at an all time low it would be a great time for Democrats to push for immigration reform and make the Republicans look bad just in time for the 2012 election . He called AZ Gov.Jan Brewer and John McCain liars on the dangerous AZ border

Jane

I tried Caro, it came back when I wasn';t looking.

Janet

Face it -- Barak Ostumble is dumb as a post. He's incapable of stringing three words together unless he's being run like a puppet.

Amen, Rob. Like Porchlight said, "He's not even good at the one thing he's supposed to be good at."

daddy

Have you guys seen the latest leak of a CIA Agent's identity by the current Administration?

Is THIS the man who killed Bin Laden? CIA mastermind finally identified... by his tie.

Personally I'm for frogmarching every member of this administration straight to jail.

What? You heard that too?

Ranger

- Whether a 1985 finding by a government watchdog gives the government legal authority to prioritize payments.

BTW, lets all remember who the real "hostage takers" are here: The Democrats.

Republicans have already offered specific legilsation that would allow the government to prioritize payments, but it is the Dems in the Senate who are blocking it. It is the Dems who are holding the US Economy hostage to the debt limit.

Janet

Thanks BB Key.

Jane

Face it -- Barak Ostumble is dumb as a post.

I want him to debate Paul Ryan.

Personally I'm for frogmarching every member of this administration straight to jail.

For any number of reasons including that one.

fdcol63

Obama is not a great "orator". He's just a good reader.

daddy

Women. You can't live with 'em, you can't live with 'em.

Lesbian couples are twice as likely as gay men to separate.

daddy

Hey, With her hair down and smiling Casey Anthony looks kind'a hot.

Demographics?

It's the economy, stupid.

Most illegals (Mexican) prefer to stay home, but when jobs in the US (especially in new construction) dry up, they go home and stay.

What's the mystery?

Drezner hasn't a clue


The most interesting international political economy new story I have read this year
Posted By Daniel W. Drezner Thursday, July 7, 2011 - 5:10 AM
Your humble blogger is off at another conference again, so blogging will be intermittent for the rest of the week. However, I wanted to highlight Damien Cave's outstanding New York Times story on the decline of illegal immigration from Mexico to the United States. The gist of Cave's story:

The extraordinary Mexican migration that delivered millions of illegal immigrants to the United States over the past 30 years has sputtered to a trickle, and research points to a surprising cause: unheralded changes in Mexico that have made staying home more attractive.

A growing body of evidence suggests that a mix of developments — expanding economic and educational opportunities, rising border crime and shrinking families — are suppressing illegal traffic as much as economic slowdowns or immigrant crackdowns in the United States....

Douglas S. Massey, co-director of the Mexican Migration Project at Princeton, an extensive, long-term survey in Mexican emigration hubs, said his research showed that interest in heading to the United States for the first time had fallen to its lowest level since at least the 1950s. “No one wants to hear it, but the flow has already stopped,” Mr. Massey said, referring to illegal traffic. “For the first time in 60 years, the net traffic has gone to zero and is probably a little bit negative.”

The decline in illegal immigration, from a country responsible for roughly 6 of every 10 illegal immigrants in the United States, is stark. The Mexican census recently discovered four million more people in Mexico than had been projected, which officials attributed to a sharp decline in emigration.

American census figures analyzed by the nonpartisan Pew Hispanic Center also show that the illegal Mexican population in the United States has shrunk and that fewer than 100,000 illegal border-crossers and visa-violators from Mexico settled in the United States in 2010, down from about 525,000 annually from 2000 to 2004. Although some advocates for more limited immigration argue that the Pew studies offer estimates that do not include short-term migrants, most experts agree that far fewer illegal immigrants have been arriving in recent years.

The question is why.

You'll have to read the whole thing to find out the whys of this phenomenon. Cave's story is so good, however, that it's worth detailing exactly why the story is so good:

Rick Ballard

jimmyk,

Given that the number of births in Mexico has been dropping for 20 years and that the fertility rate has fallen by about 60% in the same period, there can't be any surprise at all that even a very modest betterment of economic conditions in Mexico would result in a decline in the number of illegals crossing over in search of employment.

The Mexican fertility rate is now just a fraction below the replacement level. If that rate is maintained, then Mexico's population will begin to actually shrink by 2040.

narciso

What's curious is no one knew where Pacha Wazir, had gone till Susskind, pulled the curtain away, probably with a leak from Carle, he may not remember what he said first, to who. This was all a pushback to show how the CIA with Kappes and Sulick was more 'on the ball' than Cheney and W. What they did do was 'burn' a valuable window into the terrorism financing pipeline. Sometimes like with Mark Felt, they think themselves too clever by half.

BOOOOOOOSSSSSSHHHHH!!!!!

"Personally I'm for frogmarching every member of this administration straight to jail."

Pipedreams are comforting.

If Obama is reelected, I think some frogmarching will reach into our recent History. I think that is part of the panic to make him a one-termer.

Janet

This EPA story from Instapundit is maddening. EPA Funds Green Groups that Sue the Agency to Expand

We fund this crap...it is OUR money! It is insanity.
from the article - "And, to top it off, critics say the EPA often ends up paying the groups' legal fees under the Equal Access to Justice Act."

Captain Hate

Lesbian couples are twice as likely as gay men to separate.

I'm sure that is based on the numbers of people that have officially registered as couples but that excludes a lot, probably most, gay couples from consideration. I would expect the results to be otherwise but that's just based on random observations.

Rob Crawford

Lesbian couples are twice as likely as gay men to separate.

Of course they are. Two women, twice the odds of finding a reason.

daddy

Start of a bad day?

bgates

Expect a cease and desist letter and copyright infringement suit from my attorney

Heh. From my rarely updated, widely ignored Twitter feed:
#askobama would you have supported Jan Brewer if instead of deporting Mexicans she'd given them guns to murder each other like the ATF does? (posted 21 hours ago).

For the record, my other questions:
5 wars, $trillions in deficits, unemployment over 9% - do you think the Mavs can repeat next year?

if you could destroy only two countries, which one would you pick besides Israel?

if you got Peace Prize for starting wars, don't they owe you an Economics Prize by now?

Mortimer Chortle

This comment was revealing;


Login to Reply
Jeff Kaye July 6th, 2011 at 1:30 pm
5
I would like to know more about Carle’s activities in Morocco. I presume he was there at the same time the Moroccans/MI5/MI6/CIA were interrogating Binyam Mohamed. Was he involved in that interrogation?

Astoundingly, Carle misrepresents the KUBARK manual in his book. Written circa 1963, the KUBARK manual was not declassified until 1994, thanks to an investigation by the Balitmore Sun.

Carle appears to be referring to “Human Resource Exploitation Training Manual – 1983″ as also the “KUBARK” manual, conflating the two, and indeed, Carle claims he was involved in Central American “affairs” in the 1980s. That manual was also not declassified until 1994, and the Sun investigatory articles not published, i.e., made general knowledge, until 1995. For a relevant article, see Torture was taught by CIA; Declassified manual details the methods used in Honduras; Agency denials refuted, reported by Gary Cohn, Ginger Thompson, and Mark Matthews, at The Baltimore Sun, 27 January 1997.

But then Carle writes (p. 84):

The KUBARK manual was remembered by the public, if at all, only from the Agency’s involvement with the Contras in the mid-1980s, for a few controversial passages concerning coercive methods of interrogation.

Actually, the section on coercive methods (torture) takes up approx. 1/3 of the KUBARK document. Furthermore, earlier in the book, Carle states that the SERE methods used for torture were the basis of the KUBARK document; for this, he is not far off, as my writings on the origins of the DDD paradigm make clear, as it derived from observations on Air Force survival school training in the mid-to-late 1950s.

Carle continues (italics in original):

But I was repeatedly surprised to find that KUBARK presented a remarkably accurate portrayal of a detainee’s thoughts and actions…. This was ironic, as two decades earlier, and I was beginning my career, the KUBARK manual was cited by many as proof of the Agency’s involvement in torture and human rights violations. But this misrepresented the objective of the KUBARK manual. I knew then that the Agency had worked hard to stop human rights abuses by the participants in the Sandinista-Contra war — I worked the issue specifically in my assignment to Alan Fiers, the head of our Central American Task Force — and that the KUBARK manual, for all its debatable points and faults was part of our effort to stop abuses of detainees.

Here’s what Dana Priest wrote in 1996 about the 1983 Human Resource Exploitation Manual:

U.S. Army intelligence manuals used to train Latin American military officers at an Army school from 1982 to 1991 advocated executions, torture, blackmail and other forms of coercion against insurgents, Pentagon documents released yesterday show. Used in courses at the U.S. Army’s School of the Americas, the manual says that to recruit and control informants, counterintelligence agents could use “fear, payment of bounties for enemy dead, beatings, false imprisonment, executions and the use of truth serum,” according to a secret Defense Department summary of the manuals compiled during a 1992 investigation of the instructional material and also released yesterday.

As for the CIA trying to stop abuses, that’s quite laughable, as they wrote the damn torture manuals, and as the Baltimore Sun article linked above notes, the changes to the manual were not motivated from within CIA:

The 1983 manual was altered between 1984 and early 1985 to discourage torture after a furor was raised in Congress and the press about CIA training techniques being used in Central America. Those alterations and new instructions appear in the documents obtained by The Sun, support the conclusion that methods taught in the earlier version were illegal.

In fact, as Carle is either inept in what he writes, and then can’t be counted on, or more likely, is writing a sophisticated apologia/limited hang-out/conditional critique regarding Agency policy, which in fact admits certain “errors” while hiding the actual history of what occurs, the “Human Resource Exploitation Manual” is never even mentioned in Carle’s book. The words do not even appear.

As for Alan Fiers… In 1991, Fiers pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of withholding information from Congress regarding secret efforts to aid the Nicaraguan Contra rebels. Fiers was reportedly a big supporter of Adolfo Calero and Enrique Bermúdez. According to Walsh, Fiers was very cooperative with the Iran-Contra investigation. Walsh wrote: “Fiers was perhaps second only to CIA Director William J. Casey in the extent of his contact with Lt. Col. Oliver L. North’s efforts to keep the contras supplied, notwithstanding the limits of Boland Amendments upon contra aid.” — Bush, Sr. pardoned Fiers.

Carle’s book should be taken with a huge grain of salt. The fact that he is critical of the “enhanced interrogation” techniques should not blind readers to the dubious quality of his narrative.

Greenpeace, Ferdinand into the ergot.

I guess he should be glad it wasn't a shorter horned bull.
======================

Rob Crawford

I guess he should be glad it wasn't a shorter horned bull.

And that its horns are blunted.

bgates

The caption on the picture in daddy's 12:13 link is small print; it says, "pictured: Barack Obama, the US economy (L to R)".

Mortimer Chortle

The 'Holes' in Carles accounts seem to relflect the anal/analyst's need to know.

Rendition seems to be the cloud over Morocco.
Legalisms prevail.

'Need to Know" policy leaves gaps in the individual's
perspective.

Squeezing the juice from the lemon, makes the holes seem larger.

Ranger

If Obama is reelected, I think some frogmarching will reach into our recent History. I think that is part of the panic to make him a one-termer.

Yeah, just keep telling yourself that. If they could have, they would have by now. On the other hand, the construction of Chicago on the Patomac has created a target rich environment for corruption charges for the next few years:

Fast and Furious

Leaking New For Profit Education Regs to Insiders

Leaking the Plan to Dump Oil from the Stragegic Reserve to Insiders

The Auto Bailout

Obamacare Waivers

The list goes on and on and on...

narciso

I should footnote my posts, Kappes, was the deputy director with the Libyan tie to Musa Kusa, Sulick was the ops chief, with the 'bumble in Belgrade' in his CV. They both tried to undermine Goss and by extension W,
from the get go,

Ranger Dangerfield

"they would have by now."

Wrong. What's the downside for Obama? No third term in office?

Cecil Turner

Cecil, my presumption is that the reporter was cherry-picking the best numbers. The "few hundred thousand" referred to the number with a "bachelor's degree or higher."

Could be on the cherry-picking. It might just be ease of access (flying into Guadalajara), but concur the province doesn't stand out as the place to study. And I got the bachelor's degree numbers, but again that's in Jalisco, so the proper population comparison would be ~7 mil vice ~110 mil. (Agreed it's not a huge demographic slice, but it's better than 10 percent as opposed to less than one.)

Porchlight

Lesbian couples are twice as likely as gay men to separate.

I believe they are far more likely to cohabitate in the first place (the old joke "Q: What does a lesbian bring to a second date? A: A U-Haul" comes to mind). So that might help explain the higher separation numbers.

DAMAGE CONTRL

The Murdoch media empire today said it is shutting down the 168-year-old News of the World over a massive phone-hacking scandal.


CAPTIONBy Osamu Honda, AP
Update at 12:16 p.m. ET: Murdoch said the last edition on Sunday will carry no ads:>

While we may never be able to make up for distress that has been caused, the right thing to do is for every penny of the circulation revenue we receive this weekend to go to organisations – many of whom are long-term friends and partners – that improve life in Britain and are devoted to treating others with dignity. We will run no commercial advertisements this weekend. Any advertising space in this last edition will be donated to causes and charities that wish to expose their good works to our millions of readers. These are strong measures. They are made humbly and out of respect. I am convinced they are the right thing to do.

matt

TK;

That's one of the saddest looking gay people I've seen.

Dangerous waters

Posted at 05:12 PM ET, 07/06/2011
Peter Welch to fellow Dems: Vote NO on bad debt ceiling deal
By Greg Sargent
Dem Rep. Peter Welch is urging his fellow House Democrats to adopt a novel strategy in the debt ceiling standoff: They should maximize whatever leverage they can exert over the process by saying that under no circumstances will they support a debt ceiling deal that’s really bad for Dems.

Welch — who recently led 114 House Dems in voting for a “clean” debt ceiling increase — points out that with many House GOPers likely to vote against a debt ceiling increase, Republican leaders are going to need the support of many Democrats to get the increase through the House. He is in discussions with colleagues about how to draw a hard line against any deal that is deeply unbalanced in the direction of spending cuts.

“They are going to need Democrats — Democratic votes are going to be much more important and consequential,” Welch said in an interview. ”But if the deal has draconian cuts with no balance and no revenues, it’s very unlikely we’ll support it.”
Welch predicts that as many as half the Democratic caucus might vote No on a bad debt ceiling deal, potentially complicating passage, depending on how many Republicans vote against it.

Welch said that at a certain point, Dems need to stop duplicating the dynamic that was on display during the tax cut compromise, in which Dems ultimately swallowed a deal that in the long run weakened Dem legerage and was bad for the country.

“If we have a Mitch McConnell deal” — all cuts and no revenues — “I’d urge others to oppose it,” Welch said. “That would be very bad for the country. At a certaint point, if we can’t reach a balanced agreement then it will be up to the American people to sort it out out and assign respnsibility.”

Welch said that ultimately the debt ceiling would be raised — so Dems should exert their leverage by turning down a bad deal in the expectation that GOP and Dem leaders would then be forced to negotiate a fairer one.

“We are going to raise the debt ceiling,” Welch said. “The question is not whether. It’s how.”

narciso

From a Crimson editorial in 1960, that Carle must have come across in the course
of his dissertation on Aron:

"Is a democracy capable of waging a war of which an important element in the country disapproves?" are completely free of familiar cant, and remarkable in that respect at least. He speculates that two years ago de Gaulle could have acceded to the demands of the F.L.N. for compromise "without provoking a revolt by the French soldiers and citizens of Algeria," so strong was his prestige at that time. He is only vaguely optimistic about later prospects, saying in his Postscript (written in 1959) that it is possible that de Gaulle "can impose an Algerian policy of peace upon the French army." The F.L.N. leaders, Aron points out, are the lesser problem; they trust de Gaulle more than any Premier of the Fourth Republic

Threadkiller

It is still Mexico, Matt.

JM Hanes

Demographics:

"You'll have to read the whole thing to find out the whys of this phenomenon."

If you had read the story in TM's post, you might have realized that your cut and paste was the very definition of redundancy.

In any case, if you want folks to read a whole thing, add a link. It's a basic courtesy to those who actually read what you post which might also help when you have to mount a defense for your flagrant Fair Use abuses.

If you don't know how to do a free standing link, you can just say LUN at the end of your comment and turn whatever current name you're using into a link. (per this instructive example). In fact, actually using LUN as a screen name would be entirely consistent with the newest iteration of your obsessive behavior.

Mortimer Chortle

I found the commentator a bit defensive (revealing)
Can't speculate why but KUBARK seems a sensitive issue for him. Contras aside.

daddy

"Face it -- Barak Ostumble is dumb as a post. He's incapable of stringing three words together unless he's being run like a puppet."

Rob,

Look see at this AT story just posted:

Smartest president ever gets lost in the weeds

"I caught this howler of a statement from the president on a clip on Fox last night. So I did some research.


Obama--- "And so that mitigates against this danger that you're suggesting that our main goal is going to be to kill these individuals as opposed to potentially capturing them."


I challenge anyone to diagram that sentence"

Demographics


Redundant? I don't see anything about the comment I made in TM's sacrosanct post. You say you want to read, but don't. Fascinating.


It's the economy, stupid.

Most illegals (Mexican) prefer to stay home, but when jobs in the US (especially in new construction) dry up, they go home and stay.

What's the mystery?

The comments to this entry are closed.

Wilson/Plame