April 16, 2009

Can you feel the optimism?

I'm just scanning this morning's bloggable stories over at Memeorandum, and I'm getting the feeling we've stepped way back from the brink of disaster.

Pirates, tea parties, Sarah Palin's diapers, "Nicolas Sarkozy puts Barack Obama in the doghouse," slightly dangerous meat ....

This blogger is breathing a sigh of relief!

39 comments:

Bissage said...

I feel much safer now. Let’s dance.

Palladian said...

Remember the late summer when all the media could talk about was shark attacks and that woman who disappeared? I think it was around August 2001.

Pogo said...

I was at a tea Party last night.

Optimism wasn't the feeling.

More like what Wiley Coyote senses as he runs silently in mid-air, cliffside.

rhhardin said...

They stabilized the financial system.

Mission creep is stimulate the economy, always talked about as if it were the same thing.

If the Fed can't soak up the money it's flooded the financial system with when the economy picks up, even though that aborts the recovery, then we're in for a bad decade of serious inflation and misguided populism to deal with that.

Soaking up money and aborting the recovery is going to take some political leadership, which is not so far not apparent.

rhhardin said...

delete one ``not.''

L. E. Lee said...

See Ann,
You did vote for the the right presidential candidate. For smart people it was a no brainer.

Original Mike said...

Anyone who looks at the projected deficits for the next decade and comes away feeling optimistic is an absolute idiot. I.D.I.O.T.

garage mahal said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
garage mahal said...

Good read Ann. The grownups are back in charge again.

ricpic said...

Obama is a robotic commie, nothing will stop him (except maybe his teleprompter?) from taking us over the cliff.

ricpic said...

Only George Soros can save us now!

Translation: It's over, Johnny.

former law student said...

Nicolas Sarkozy puts Barack Obama in the doghouseWhile this may be true, always remember this: "Nobody puts Baby in the corner."

I was at a tea Party last night.

Optimism wasn't the feeling.

More like what Wiley Coyote senses as he runs silently in mid-air, cliffside.
To demonstrate standing, a litigant must show that ithas suffered a concrete and particularized injury that is either actual or imminent, that the injury is fairly traceable to the defendant, and
that a favorable decision will likely redress that injury. See Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife, 504 U. S. 555, 560–561 (1992).

This rule on standing to sue should be a general rule of life. Yesterday's teabaggers were not protesting their elimination from the political process, they're not protesting any actual harm that has come to them (such as an increased tax rate). At best they were complaining about some speculative future harm. As such, they violate the rule of standing.

The teabaggers remind me of my elderly dog, who, when faced with an interruption in her routine, will bark incessantly out of some vague dissatisfaction with the world.

Similarly, the teabaggers face the prospect of change, and that alone is disturbing to them. And their protesting is as pointless as my dog's.

Pogo said...

"their protesting is as pointless as my dog's"

I agree.
We are becoming pets and workhorses, and our masters find our barking pointless.

EDH said...

The Onion made a similar observation after 9-11.

A Shattered Nation Longs To Care About Stupid Bullshit Again
Be sure to enlarge the image.

Greybeard said...

FLS-
As has been pointed out here before, the use of the term "teabaggers" immediately causes me to ignore the rest of that commenters thoughts.

About the economy...
Inflation is the inevitable result of our governments actions.
I'm buying gold.

Peter V. Bella said...

"We are becoming pets and workhorses, and our masters find our barking pointless."

I.B.O.

former law student said...

use of the term "teabaggers" immediately causes me to ignore the rest of that commenters thoughts.

How about mailers and dumpers of tea bags?

Tea parties: Tea bags embody taxpayer rebellion
Bags often mistaken as hazardous materials when they arrive at lawmakers' offices —Sara Olkon
April 14, 2009
As part of a nationwide tax rebellion, protesters, in a nod to the Boston Tea Party, have been sending tea bags to their representatives. The trouble is, the tea keeps getting mistaken for a hazardous substance.

In Boulder, Colo., the district office of U.S. Rep. Jared Polis recently called for help after a lumpy white envelope with no return address arrived in the mail. The Boulder County Hazardous Materials Response Team found a tea bag and a note reading "We the People, 1773."

Earlier this month in Manchester, N.H., a hazmat team descended on the office of U.S. Rep. Carol Shea-Porter after employees opened an envelope marked "tax protest" and found a bunch of tea leaves. Two days later, the Modesto, Calif., office of U.S. Rep. George Radanovich was evacuated after an intern alerted staff after finding an envelope containing a "granular substance" that turned out to be, once again, tea.

With the protest expected to reach a crescendo Wednesday—organizers say some 300 "tea parties" are scheduled for April 15—some conservatives are now trying to persuade folks to send just the tag or write the word "tea bag" instead.
...

But with all the brouhaha over using the postal system, McAlindon has decided to drive to D.C. to hand-deliver the family-sized Lipton and Luzianne tea bags. She plans to present the tea at an anti-tax party scheduled for Lafayette Park, across the street from the White House.

"That's about as close as I can get to delivering them to Mr. Obama," she said.

Sofa King said...

Personally I find it instructive that FLS believes the current deficit trajectory and monetary policy is of no consequence to anyone.

Look at this chart and try to come back here and tell us with a straight face we have no cause for alarm, none whatsoever.

Sofa King said...

Why not take a glance at this graph too and please, explain to us why this is just nothing to be concerned about, how it just doesn't affect us at all.

Sofa King said...

Everything is peachy! Free health care for all! Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!One question, FLS: do you have to work at being such a shill? Or does it come naturally?

zedzded said...

Obamabots wave their hands and say "La la la" when confronted with facts. Unicorns and rainbows - that is what will save us all. Math is hard, don't make them do math.

Original Mike said...

...they're not protesting any actual harm that has come to themWillfully obtuse.

I never thaought I'd be a gold buyer, but I'm starting to think about it. Would a commodities index will serve the same purpose?

Big Mike said...

I'm sorry, but I followed the link and don't see anything at all to be optimistic about.

I got out of college in time for Lyndon Johnson and his merry men to draft me, and my wife and I left graduate school just in time for Jimmy Carter's mangling of the US economy. And despite this she and I feel that our children, one out of college and the other just entering graduate school, face a world worse than the one we faced, and very likely to get worse yet.

I'm more certain now that we will see a nuclear device detonate in an American city than I ever was at the very depths of the Cold War. We've had a 20 year breather between the collapse of the USSR and Iran and North Korea's likely development of nuclear arms. Maybe I should be glad of that and push on.

former law student said...

Look at this chart and try to come back here and tell us with a straight face we have no cause for alarm, none whatsoever.

Look at this chart, and try to come back here and tell us with a straight face why they didn't sound the alarm when Reagan and the two Bushes were in charge. If Goppers truly cared about deficits, they would be raising shrines to Bill Clinton:

http://zfacts.com/p/318.html

Plus, under current conservative revisionism, none of Roosevelt's programs had any effect on getting us out of the Depression -- only our entry into WWII did that.

Well, just look at the massive deficits we ran getting into WWII. Amity Shlaes should be proud of what Obama's doing.

It's hard to take whiners seriously when they let the same behavior slide when one of their own did it.

AlphaLiberal said...

Enjoy it while it lasts. The country is still in the ditch that 8 years of George Bush and Republican policies put us into. More stormy seas ahead.

p.s. The teabaggers may want to watch FoxNews take credit for their PR work on the teabagging orgies. Yeah, keep telling yourselves it's a grassroots movement. You'll believe anything your masters tell you.

Big Mike said...

Actually, FLS, many of us fiscal conservatives did regard a Republican-controlled Congress combined with a centrist Democrat President as perhaps the best governmental structure with respect to the economy we've ever had. Clinton may have had the personal morals of a jackrabbit, but on the rare occassions when he didn't have an intern or female journalist on her knees in front of him he actually wasn't a bad president. If only he hadn't bothered to tell the Pakistanis that the cruise missiles he fired at Bin Laden weren't intended for them, a whole bunch of people would be alive today, so that can be held against him. He defeated Serbia with no American casualities, so that's also to his credit.

The present governmental structure -- both houses of Congress firmly in the hands of Democrats with far left-of-center leadership and an inexerienced far left-of-center Democrat President -- is probably the worst. There's no way it won't screw up the economy for decades after the voters have run Democrats out of Washington, DC.

As far as national economies during wartime, it would be good if you grew up, FLS. Are you planning to tell a soldier that he can't have any more bullets today because the economy needs to be balanced? If he tell him face to face, you'd best check whether he left behind his K-Bar that day. You spend what it takes to win, period. Losing is even worse, as anyone looking at the US economy after the fall of Saigon would agree.

AlphaLiberal said...

Attaboy.Way to take it to the teabaggers. They can't handle the truth.

Original Mike said...

What the debt chart that SofaKing pointed to shows is that the projected Obama deficits dwarf what has come before. Your chart, FLS, does not include the Obama deficits. And THAT'S what people are worried about.

Sofa King said...

Look at this chart, and try to come back here and tell us with a straight face why they didn't sound the alarm when Reagan and the two Bushes were in charge.

Irrelevant to the question of whether there is a basis for concern NOW. Even if your opponent is the biggest hypocrite in the world, he might still be correct.

Well, just look at the massive deficits we ran getting into WWII. Amity Shlaes should be proud of what Obama's doing.

So, from the winning of what war can we expect Obama's peace dividends to come? Just curious. And oh yeah, keep this chart in mind when you answer.

former law student said...

Your chart, FLS, does not include the Obama deficits. And THAT'S what people are worried about.But unlike Reagan and the Bushes, Obama's not just raising the deficits for shits and giggles, but in response to an economic crisis. That the debt as a percent of GDP might reach levels not seen since the Truman Presidency -- a time not generally marked by fretting and handwringing -- is a dose of tough but necessary medicine.

former law student said...

from the winning of what war can we expect Obama's peace dividends to come?Obama's rebuilding of the Coalition of the Willing will mean that we will no longer have to go it alone as the World's Peacemaker.

Original Mike said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sofa King said...

That the debt as a percent of GDP might reach levels not seen since the Truman Presidency -- a time not generally marked by fretting and handwringing -- is a dose of tough but necessary medicine.

FLS - even if we were inclined to think that deficit spending is an efficient way to end a recession, that still leaves the question of how exactly we are going to phase out these deficits. Obama is building in huge structural deficits, even assuming a strong economic recovery. Okay, you're willing to justify a rise in spending akin to those at the outbreak of WWII. How are we going to get the reductions corresponding with the end of the war? That's the question we would like to see some discussion of.

Original Mike said...

That the debt as a percent of GDP might reach levels not seen since the Truman Presidency ...How do you conclude that the level will only reach "Truman proportions"?

You're not getting something, FLS. Your chart cuts off at NOW. It does not show the next ten years.

Original Mike said...

Sorry for the run ons. Apparently, there's a new bug in blogger.

Sofa King said...

Obama's rebuilding of the Coalition of the Willing will mean that we will no longer have to go it alone as the World's Peacemaker.

(A) Implausible.
(B) You didn't look at that chart, did you? You're talking a point or two of total GDP at most.

former law student said...

How are we going to get the reductions corresponding with the end of the war? That's the question we would like to see some discussion of.First, we've been pouring taxpayer funds down the ratholes created by credit default swaps. He who pays the piper calls the tune, so investment banks, hedge funds, etc. will have to submit to regulation. Once the bleeding has stopped, the rate of deficit increase will slow.

Second, the shock of this recession has had the salutary effect of discouraging American consumers from spending money they don't have on crap they don't need. This will reduce our current account deficit, because most of this crap comes from Asia. Increased savings and investment will make American businesses prosper, and thus pay more taxes and retire the deficit.

On this note, I think it's odd that one of the tea party proponents, Anthony Astolfi, supports a man for the Senate, Peter Schiff, who proudly invests Americans' savings everywhere except in this country.

jayne_cobb said...

Obama couldn't get more than 300 non-combat soldiers for Afghanistan. What major policing are our erstwhile allies going to suddenly decide to take up?

Sofa King said...

Once the bleeding has stopped, the rate of deficit increase will slow.

That still leaves the deficit at an enormous level. The projected structural deficits DO NOT include our various one-shot stimulus/bailout bills and such.

Second, the shock of this recession has had the salutary effect of discouraging American consumers from spending money they don't have on crap they don't need.

I'd say "encouraged less" but yeah, basically.

This will reduce our current account deficit, because most of this crap comes from Asia.

You mean like all those houses nobody is buying? All those GM cars sitting on the lots? People are still shopping at Walmart, you know.

Increased savings and investment will make American businesses prosper, and thus pay more taxes and retire the deficit.

This just plain doesn't make sense. If "savings and investment" as opposed to consumer spending make American businesses prosper, then why is the Fed doing everything possible to encourage more borrowing and spending? Furthermore, you don't offer any reason why - if "prosperity" means people have more money to spend on crap they don't want - we don't immediately go back to buying our crap from Asia! What's the connection here? Are you using some definition of "prosperity" wherein more taxes are paid but people have less money to spend? Well, hell, just set the tax rate to 100%! Prosperity for all!