Paul Krugman is Fat!

There is so much pent up anger and fail in this comment that I don’t know if I can contain myself:

Fucking primary him yesterday or deal with the choice you’ll have in 2012. Instead of adding to his near Jonah Goldberg-sized paunch with cocktail parties with David Brooks and churning out boilerplate for the Gray Lady, perhaps Krugman should’ve taken it upon himself to collect some signatures and raise funds.

Look- Krugman is RIGHT about the economics. Period. What is irritating is that he really does not seem to understand that the House and the majority of the country disagree with him and that there is some way we can enact his policies with the House and the Senate (Blue dogs + Republicans = fuck you progressive policies) in the way. And I agree with him that Obama’s deficit rhetoric ain’t helping.

But seriously- Paul Krugman is fat? Get a grip, people.

*** Update ***

From the comments:

Oh, and I overlooked this flatout falsehood:

“a majority of the country disagree with him.”

In fact, Krugman’s views on virtually all economic issues have widespread support, progressive taxation, creating jobs are more important than deficit cutting, don’t cure Medicare or Social Security, etc.

This is 100% accurate, and I spoke carelessly. The public does support the policies that Krugman advocates. They overwhelmingly support liberal positions in poll after poll. But they also support generic notions of deficit cutting and are hopelessly susceptible to rhetoric about “cutting back in hard times,” And polls be damned, the most important thing to remember is they keep electing Republicans.

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322 replies
  1. 1
    schrodinger's cat says:

    Rush Limbaugh is fat, Paul Krugman is not.

    ETA: Tunch is floofeh and big boned.

  2. 2
    Yevgraf says:

    Seemed snarkalicious to me, but what do I know?

  3. 3
    Brian S says:

    Link’s not quite right, but it’s close enough for scrolling.

    I’m fat too. Does that mean my opinions don’t matter? I mean, they don’t, but that has nothing to do with my love for Ben & Jerry’s and Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout and Nacho Cheese Doritos.

    All at once.

  4. 4
    Martin says:

    Wait, does this now mean that economics is a liberal conspiracy? Because I’ve been expecting that to take over as the 2012 GOP meme.

  5. 5
    PeakVT says:

    Gore – fat. Krugman – shrill.

    Let’s not complicate things.

  6. 6
    Brian S says:

    @Martin: Why not? It can join evolution and global warming.

  7. 7
    Asteele says:

    I’m sure Krugman knows these things, and it’s not like he just attacks democrats. But members of both (including the president) spend a lot of time saying really wrong things about economy. It’s both a practical problem in that it reduces public support for good economic policy, and I think a political problem because the democrats are going to lose the senate and probably the presidency in 2012 because the economy is going to be terrible. This will be more or less entirely their fault.

  8. 8
    kd bart says:

    Krugman went to the same high school as me. 10 years earlier.

  9. 9
    taylormattd says:

    Don’t forget, somebody in an OFA office sent out a mean email calling Jane Hamsher a firebagger!!!!!!

  10. 10
    Jim C. says:

    I really needed a laugh today! A “Krugman is fat” comment really hit the spot. Thanks John.

  11. 11
    Corner Stone says:

    Mmmm…Thursday Night NFL Football…

  12. 12
    srv says:

    Everyone who says K-thug isn’t realistic about politics is a liar and has probably never read a single one of his blog posts.

    What he does rant about, and you morons can’t stand or understand in your tiny little brains, is that Obama ADOPTING FUCKING WINGNUT TALKING POINTS IS STUPID POLITICS AND ECONOMICS.

    Nobody put a gun to his head and made him do that. He did that either because he stupidly believes that, or he’s trying to pander to wingnut talking points. If you think pandering to wingnut talking points is effective strategic policy, then please, knock yourselves out here with batshit theories. But don’t blame the messenger for pointing out your emperor has no fucking clothes on.

  13. 13
    capt says:

    Look- Krugman is RIGHT about the economics.

    I’m sorry but that is not a given nor is it factual. Krugman is right about some things but I can read you as much that he has written that is flat out wrong. The nature of a columnist is to talk about issues not to be “right. Period” nor even try to be right about everything. Krugman says as much in one of his more famous quotes.

    He is a professor and a columnist and good at what he does but he is not right about everything nor is the WH and Obama wrong about everything, that kind of binary thinking should be left to the right and the anti-intellectuals not open minded people seeking solutions to complex problems.

    BTW – Krug just might be considered fat – so there is at least one factual thing in the post. :)

  14. 14
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    Speaking of which and seriously OT but if anyone in Eastern NC wants a Puddy Tat that looks EXACTLY like Tunch (with the same “big bones” too) CAPS has one in the adoption thingy in the Jacksonville Petsmart. A very handsome fellow he is too.

  15. 15
    John Cole says:

    @srv:

    What he does rant about, and you morons can’t stand or understand in your tiny little brains, is that Obama ADOPTING FUCKING WINGNUT TALKING POINTS IS STUPID POLITICS AND ECONOMICS.

    WTF. That is what I said:

    And I agree with him that Obama’s deficit rhetoric ain’t helping.

    I don’t know how I can be clearer.

  16. 16
    phil says:

    It’s not like Krugman just started saying this yesterday.
    Obama has had plenty of time (and had a majority Dem congress), but he chose Catfood Commission (I & II) over jobs.

  17. 17
    RosiesDad says:

    @kd bart:

    Krugman went to the same high school as me. 10 years earlier.

    Bellmore Kennedy! I was Class of 1975. When did you get out? Must have been with one of my younger brothers….

  18. 18
    boss bitch says:

    I believe the argument is that Krugman is naive on politics.

    Also, Obama has been talking about a balanced approach, not just deficits. Agree with it or not, he moved the conversation back to the middle when Repubs and even some Dems were talking about nothing but cuts.

  19. 19
    srv says:

    @John Cole:

    I don’t know how I can be clearer.

    My hippie rage is directed at the vast Obamaton army of Baboon-Juice, and I acknowledge your tree in the forest. Apologies.

  20. 20
    RosiesDad says:

    @John Cole:

    I don’t know how I can be clearer.

    YOU COULD HAVE TYPED IT IN ALL CAPS.

    Seriously, isn’t that the problem with Obama? He’s smart enough that you know that he knows he is just talking shit. We think he’s doing it to build support from the other side of the aisle but 2 1/2 years have made no difference and you think he would have realized it by now.

  21. 21
    phil says:

    @John Cole:

    I don’t know how I can be clearer.

    Maybe if you didn’t say things like this –

    What is irritating is that he really does not seem to understand that the House and the majority of the country disagree with him…

  22. 22
    ObamaBot2012 says:

    http://www.thepeoplesview.net/.....-left.html

    Krugman admits that the emoprogs are jealous that the Teapugs are more successful.

    He finally says something I agree with.

  23. 23
    kindness says:

    I say give the person Front Page posting capability so we have some place to throw our rotten vegetables.

  24. 24
    david mizner says:

    Ah, back to basics: the makeup-of-Congress-is-why-Obama-sucks excuse. It’s so much than better than the Obama-is-employing-a-civil-rights-nonviolent-approach excuse, or the Americans-aren’t-liberal excuse, or the Obama-doesn’t-actually-support-the-bills-he’s-supporting excuse.

    As for Krugman: he’s been clear: try to pass good bills and when they fail, blame Republicans. In other words, Cole, you’re so full of shit it’s coming out your ears.

  25. 25
    dm9871 says:

    One of the reasons that the House and the majority of Americans disagree with Krugman is because Obama and many Democrats have adopted right wing Herbert Hoover, anti-Keynesian talking points.

    Cole, to some extent you seem to be saying Krugman is right about the economics but “wrong” about the politics – at least wrong in the sense that he seems to believe Obama and the Dems could do something concrete about it. I don’t understand why you discount the idea that in politics, what you say really does matter. Obama, from day one, should have been saying (as Krugman instructed him to say), “we need to create larger deficits because we need JOBS!” and we can worry about the deficits later.” Obama might have been able to get a larger stimulus. The Dems might not have gotten pummeled at the polls in 2010. And right now, they might stand a better shot at doing something useful for the economy, rather than being in a place where further cuts are on the table. They’d also have a clearer message for reelection: “we wanted to do something about unemployment, but the Republicans prevented us from doing so. They’re neo-Hooverites, Dems are New Dealers.”

    Who knows, maybe everything would have turned out exactly the same, in which case you’re right. But in politics what you say and what you fight for matters sometimes. It helps to expand (or contract) the window of what’s possible. It feels like your ongoing defense of Obama, while right in certain respects, discounts in the impact of political discourse and makes the system seem like a FIXED system rather than a DYNAMIC one.

  26. 26
    Blue Neponset says:

    What is irritating is that he really does not seem to understand that the House and the majority of the country disagree with him and that there is some way we can enact his policies with the House and the Senate (Blue dogs + Republicans = fuck you progressive policies) in the way.

    I am fairly certain Krugman knows that the Republicans in the House disagree with him. What K-dog seems to disagree with you about is the idea that Obama is helpless against the House Republicans.

  27. 27
    boss bitch says:

    @ObamaBot2012:

    I sure as hell don’t want Dems bowing to the left the way the GOP does to the right.

  28. 28
    Nylund says:

    Honestly though, he does have a pretty big “paunch” (but he hides it well!) Not that it matters. I’m a fan.

  29. 29

    @capt: Who do you think knows more about economics? Krugman, or the President and his Chicago school flunkies(Goolsbee, et al.)? Also, did you see what Rick Perlstein wrote today? Check it out:

    How Democrats Win: Defending the Social Safety Net

  30. 30
    Marc says:

    @david mizner:

    Krugman is better than the purity brigade, in the sense that he does properly assign blame to the Republicans where it is due. But he also engages in a lot of mind-reading of Obama, largely of poor quality, and is out of touch with the politics.

    For example, the polling data is crystal clear: the public overwhelmingly wants deficit cutting. His position on spending is deeply unpopular – and yet he doesn’t engage this obvious political problem, ever.

    I read him because he’s a brilliant economist. But his grasp of politics is worse than a lot of other writers. This is a mistake that a lot of smart people make: their expertise in one subject doesn’t automatically make their opinions on everything else valuable.

  31. 31
    phil says:

    Obama could just say: “jobs mean income, which means more tax revenue, which pays down the debt.

  32. 32
    jl says:

    OK, time for some home truths that I know inside and out because they have popped fresh into my head right now:

    The vile glibertarian communist corporate tool heartless softie Cole is a Kbot because Kthug’s cats are fatter than Tunch.

    So, you see, that is how it works on the libtard fat cat hierarchy. Expect no criticism of Kthug, (who is so EVIL, he rooting for a space alien invasion to wipe out humanity I will have you know) at this here miserable lefty blog.

    Can Cole deny that. No, he will not and cannot.

  33. 33

    Look- Krugman is RIGHT about the economics. Period

    But exactly, he is right about one tenet of his keynesian theory of government spending as stimulus to keep the economy afloat, in his critique of government policy. But he has adopted progressive political talking points, about a number of things, like the debt deficit deal, that are also part of the keynesian theory of long term deficit reduction, and writing hyperbolic headlines, like “The President Surrenders”.

    Obama did not surrender anything not fully in keeping with Krugman’s econ philosophy. Such as the debt deal set up to be long term deficit reduction via the cuts agreed on in the original deal. He is adopting the simplistic prog battle cry of “no surrender, no compromise”

    He conflates “medicare cuts” like the nutroots do, with benefit cuts, rather than what they are. MEDICARE PROVIDER long term cuts. Also, fully keynesian toward bending down the long term skyrocketing cost of medicare and health care spending curve as a whole.

    And like you say, he ignores the political realities of getting spending bills through the House, that Obama agrees with him on needed short term stimulus.

    So what he is doing, is attempting to play advocate politics that is truncated and polemic, as not in full service to the facts, and hoisting his economic creds as some kind of troll protection. If he is going to be a world class econo guy with a Nobel Prize, then he needs to be honest in the fullest sense in his critique of Obama, and not mixing in his political movement bullshit, with that status. The point being, is that Obama is actually a pretty full throated keynesian, but he is operating in the land of the crazies that is making law in a democracy, where Krugman can comfortably sit in his NYT’s office and do nothing but type some words and get them published.

    And if he is going to not be fair with Obama, and his dealings with the wingers, and his agreements that don’t violate Krugman’s own theories, he needs to say so, while still pushing for more short term stimulus.

    When he chooses headlines like “The President Surrenders” when he didn’t according to Krugman’s own doctrine, then he has gone too far, and Obama and his supporters, on this blog, and elsewhere, are fully within their rights to return in kind. I no longer give a shit about Krugman, he can pretty much go to hell, and his prog minions also too.

  34. 34
    david mizner says:

    Oh, and I overlooked this flatout falsehood:

    “a majority of the country disagree with him.”

    In fact, Krugman’s views on virtually all economic issues have widespread support, progressive taxation, creating jobs are more important than deficit cutting, don’t cure Medicare or Social Security, etc.

  35. 35
    Marc says:

    @dm9871:

    Here on planet Earth, by contrast, it’s pretty clear that Obama is trying to minimize the harm from short-term spending cuts.

    By the purity brigade logic, Bill Clinton clearly agreed with Gingrich, since he proclaimed that “the era of big government is over.”

    There are other things to do besides the online left approach of yelling all of the time and framing and other assorted bullshit rhetorical devices.

    For example, you can start by sympathizing with a point of view and then gradually turn it around. For instance, start with balanced budget boilerplate, then talk about investment. People might listen to you.

    If you rejected the “frame”, by contrast, they might not bother to get to the second sentence.

    Oh, and as per #34 above, deficit cuts by reduced spending are extremely popular; you’re confusing the online left echo chamber with the broader public.

  36. 36
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Martin:

    Economics has been a liberal conspiracy since 1776.

  37. 37
    Klaus says:

    I propose Krugman understands politics far better than Obama and the DC circuit if you look at a long enough timeline – say, more than a week or so. He nailed the weak-stimulus trap over two years ago, and here we are. A lot of other examples could be found too, I’m sure.

  38. 38
    david mizner says:

    @General Stuck:

    Obama surrendered in january 2009 when he refused to push a sufficient stimulus because of concerns about the deficit.

    “TAPPER: Your team has talked about the stimulus package being $675 to $775 billion. But at the same time…you’re going to distribute a memo in which economists say it should be between $800 billion and $1.3 trillion. How do you reconcile that difference…?

    OBAMA: Well, we are still in consultation with members of Congress about the final size of the package. We expect that it will be on the high end of our estimates, but [it] will not be as high as some economists have recommended because of the constraints and concerns we have about the existing deficit.”

  39. 39
    Skipjack says:

    I don’t understand how you can state that the House and the majority of the country don’t agree with a statement but then insist that the President tell them they are wrong. If you’ve ever paid any attention to Obama you’ll notice that he just about never challenges conventional wisdom, especially head on. He just subverts it and establishes the new normal. It’s why he’s talking deficit on the road but still calling for new stimulus in the “supercommittee”. It’s not bad politics, it’s just not cramming our righteousness down the craw of the lowest common denominator we need to convince.

    I’ve said this before but Paul Krugman is perhaps among the least successful Democratic politicians of this era that I can think of. For someone who is so strong on policy he has so few wins it depresses me. If he hadn’t come around belatedly on healthcare he’d have so few that we might round him down to zero. I’ll let him lecture on economics, but lets also all admit out loud the experts on the politics are the ones who won it all.

  40. 40
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @jl:

    A gauntlet has been thrown at Cole’s feet.

    Now the question is, can he bend over to pick it up…

  41. 41
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Good god, has every thread the past couple of days devolved into Obot vs firebagger sniping?

    OT: While running a work related errand on Capitol Square today, I ran into the protagonists of the Althouse camera assault tragicomedy. They were talking to some folks about the incident and laughing their asses off.

  42. 42
    jl says:

    A serious comment though, it might be useful for people to separate out Krugman’s economic analysis from his political advice.

    80 to 90 percent of what Krugman says on economics is the same as what a dozen other prominent Keynesian macroeconomists. And where these people differ (how to handle China currency issue, relative merits of bankruptcy for corporations in trouble due to macro crises, the extent and timing of the true long run US public debt problem) are strictly secondary to where they agree on best short run macro economic policies.

    So, Krugman is not spouting off, he is grinding out conclusions from his own minor variation on a standard model, which basically dates from the late 1990s after Krugman and some others noted that Great Depression macro issues might become important again from Asian economic crises.

    As long was we are in a liquidity trap, or nearly so, you kids can buy the Schaums outline books on macroeconomics and international economics and follow along with the HS algebra math you need to do rough cut models yourselves.

    So personal Krugman bashing on his economics kind of misses what is going on in terms of the economic debate.

  43. 43
    kindness says:

    So the supposition is that Americans ‘want’ deficit reduction. I’m not so sure. Oh, I don’t doubt the polls. I doubt Americans know what the hell they are talking about much of the time.

    John’s not happy camper ’cause he figures everyone is pretty much on the same page & the hippies keep bleating that Obama isn’t helping. Well I kind of agree with John in that everyone, progressives & liberals especially should know, but I don’t think it’s a good blanket statement. & the hippies? Sure they’re right. I think Obama’s not using the bully pulpit well enough to change those vacuous American minds. I mean, Americans want a light at the end of the tunnel. They want a map of how to get there. They don’t really want it to happen now ’cause tightening up the government spigot will sink the economy even more. The things are linked & I wish our leaders would be putting it in those terms & they ain’t.

  44. 44
    gwangung says:

    I propose Krugman understands politics far better than Obama and the DC circuit if you look at a long enough timeline

    I think he understands POLICY. Not sure he understands politics.

  45. 45
    Scamp Dog says:

    Yep, most of the people out there believe that the government should cut back when times are hard, just like the rest of us. The problem is that most of the Village believes it too, and seemingly all of the pundits except Krugman.

    When the media spends 30 or more years not talking any sense about the economy, why wouldn’t most of the people out there believe nonsense? The next question is how to get the idea out there without cooperation from big media or top-level Democrats?

  46. 46
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @srv:

    the vast Obamaton army of Baboon-Juice

    This is tagline-worthy.

  47. 47

    @david mizner:

    Obama surrendered in january 2009 when he refused to push a sufficient stimulus because of concerns about the deficit.

    more bullshit from lala land. Don’t waste my time with this tired and false canards. It has been debunked more than the moon landings were faked.

  48. 48
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @RosiesDad:

    We think he’s doing it to build support from the other side of the aisle

    IMHO he’s doing it to build support from the _same_ side of the aisle. Conservative Democratic politicians genuinely believe in balanced budgets and belt-tightening as much as Republicans pretend to do. Mark Warner really wants to balance the budget, because it’s A Good Thing. I guarantee that this is a true reflection of what he actually thinks. OTOH, Jim DeMint, or whoever you might name, doesn’t want to balance the budget, he wants to cut freeloaders off welfare, because mumble-mumble liberty, and only uses balanced-budget talk to soften his rigid ideological stance.

  49. 49
    aisce says:

    @ stuck

    except, the president did surrender in his attempt to get a “balanced approach” to deficit reduction.

    it doesn’t make much practical difference to the deficit, not getting rid of subsidies for corporate jet depreciation and oil exploration and whatever this time around, but he did decidedly lose that one with the house. and the president retains his significant polling advantage to fight again on the issue. which is good. but there’s no denying that after losing his attempt to negotiate a “grand bargain,” he and biden had to retrench, protect entitlements, and go with more defense spending cuts as a way to save face. just as boehner had to save face by keeping the balanced budget amendment “active” after completely failing to touch entitlement spending in any way.

    neither side did very well for themselves substantively on the deal. capping discretionary spending in some arbitrarily defined outyear period isn’t much of an accomplishment anyone can enjoy. and so they fight on.

  50. 50
    Zifnab says:

    Obama’s a lover, not a fighter. Look at his political career. He made his bones playing to the center, working across the aisle, finding compromise and exploiting common ground.

    The man simply was not designed to handle the “Fuck you, I’m driving this car off a cliff” Republican-style politics.

  51. 51
    Observer says:

    @General Stuck: Well that’s the problem with you and Obama type thinkers in general, General.

    Krugman’s an economist. He’s done his job. He pointed out what should be done and he pointed out, repeatedly, why what people want to do is wrong and why, even though his view is in the minority, it is correct and he “called his shots” and pretty much everything he predicted economically has come to pass both in the US and in Europe. But that’s his job.

    Obama’s job was to fix the economy. You may remember the election of ’08 after the stock market crash and generally the election was won on that issue after people realized they trusted Obama more than mr grumpy Johnny Mac.

    It’s the job of politicians to manage the politics so that the policies that are good for the country get passed. That’s really the only job of a politician and on this he’s failed. Miserably. When people write that Dems or Obama can’t get stuff passed because of the Republicans what they’re saying, without admitting it, is that the Dems and Obama have failed at their jobs.

    It’s not Krugman’s job to pass the necessary legislation to fix the economy. The people who’s job it is should quit complaining and do their fucking jobs.

  52. 52
    Martin says:

    @dm9871:

    One of the reasons that the House and the majority of Americans disagree with Krugman is because Obama and many Democrats have adopted right wing Herbert Hoover, anti-Keynesian talking points.

    Wait, so the Democrats are the most powerful voice here then?

    My primary gripe with the left is that they are more interested in winning arguments than solving problems. You’re the folks that, standing in front of a burning house with no water pressure in the hydrant would reject a bucket brigade become some competing fire company suggested it. Yes, the hydrant would be the best solution, but it’s unavailable to you – accept the next best solution. Instead, you’d rather the house burn down because maybe then people will listen to you.

    Obama and Dems aren’t abandoning their principles, they’re seeking some actual assistance for people and when campaign season rolls back around, when that narrative is actually relevant to what actions happen next, then they go back to where they started. Right now the state of play is in Congress. In 9 months it’ll be in the voting booth. The narrative will change to fit the circumstances.

  53. 53
    boss bitch says:

    @Klaus:

    He said should the stim should have been bigger – policy

    In no way has he proven that the votes were there – politics.

  54. 54
    Jeffro says:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ: There’s so much inside baseball on this site, no wonder I can’t have a decent watercooler conversation anymore…;)

  55. 55
    jl says:

    @General Stuck: Some of what you say is true, but I do not see how Krugman has conflated any and all social insurance expenditure with social insurance benefit cuts.

    If Krugman did that, I do not see how Krugman could have advocated stronger relative effective analysis to determine reimbursable Medicare claims, or Medicare bargaining power for drug purchases.

    IIRC, Krugman was critical when Obama put increases in Medicare eligibility age on the table, which is an outright benefit cut, and bad policy in that it might make the US health care expenditure crisis worse.

  56. 56
    boss bitch says:

    Paul Krugman is a non-motherfucking factor. next.

  57. 57
    Jennifer says:

    Gotta disagree with a lot of you folks who seem to be laboring under the misconception that, if the public opposes something either because the president led from his bully pulpit or for other reasons, then the Congress will get in line. I see no indication of that. Look at the polling on tax increases for millionaires and billionaires. North of 70% favor that, but there’s not a chance in hell Republicans would ever support it.

    I share your frustration when the president adopts right wing framing or talking points. Where we part company is on the assumption you seem to have that if he didn’t, it would change outcomes. I don’t believe that it would from a legislative standpoint, so I’m not of the Obama’s-a-Sellout persuasion so much as I am of the Obama’s-a-Wuss persuasion. Because while I don’t think bully-pulpiteering would change any of the legislative outcomes we’ve seen – how could it, when we have crazy people elected by crazy people doing the legislating? – I DO think it could have some very positive electoral consequences.

    That’s me, though. There are others just as convinced that Obama can’t risk the “angry black man” tail the media and GOP are all too eager to hang on him. I’ll concede that they very well may be right, because if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it is that I shouldn’t underestimate the level of racism in this country. Or the level of stupidity. I do get a bit pissed when people suggest that if this is, in fact, what’s going on, that it’s just Obama worrying about nothing other than his own political hide, and not only because I think maybe I’m wrong and he and Plouffe are right on the “angry black man” trap. Because like it or not, our fates are at this point inextricably entwined – it’s either gonna be Obama with all of his real or perceived flaws, or it’s gonna be the Insane Clown Posse. If what’s good for Obama politically is one and the same with what’s good for keeping us out of the clutches of the Posse, I’m not gonna carp about it.

  58. 58
    cat48 says:

    The Deficit talk will not leave soon because he plans to submit it with the Jobs bill. Standard Poor wanted this within 90 days of July 15 or the US would be downgraded. That was exactly what the Credit Warning issued by them said. Moody’s & Fitch is ok with the deal we have & plan to keep us at Triple A.

    I heard a pundit say that the prez was humiliated by the Downgrade so from what I’ve seen of him, he’s going to keep trying for that fucking Grand Bargain he wanted to keep the Triple A rating.. Poor guy. Nobody but me will vote for him next time I guess. Just a shame. I’d rather he try to fix SocSec & Medicare than President Ryan anyway. It would be easier to defend the programs if he has already fixed them.

  59. 59
    dm9871 says:

    @ Marc

    Your planet earth comment is stupid. Why has Obama chosen to make cuts the centerpiece of his first term anyway? There is absolutely no urgency, as a fiscal matter, in dealing with deficits now, as opposed to 20 years from now. (Ending a war or two or three, a little early would improve things too, by the way.)

    There isn’t necessarily any political urgency to making the cuts either. Polls consistently show that Americans are much more worried about jobs than deficits. The only ones who are worried about deficits are the DC media-political elite.

    Obama has chosen to cave to that conventional wisdom and to make cuts the centerpiece. He has frequently adopted that rhetoric.

    Here on planet earth (to borrow your cheap, dismissive rhetoric), Obama could just as easily have “taken the issue to the voters” – he could have said “I care about middle class people and jobs and that means spending more right now, not less.” The idea that that is impossible is just wrong. Somehow Bush managed to not care about deficits and get away with it. Why couldn’t Obama at least tried – especially since that’s exactly what Keynesianism says one should do at a moment like this?

  60. 60
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @Marc:

    Oh, and as per #34 above, deficit cuts by reduced spending are extremely popular; you’re confusing the online left echo chamber with the broader public.

    Cuts are extremely popular with people who believe that those cuts will affect someone other than themselves. It’s like those polls that reflect people’s low regard for Congress – save for the people whom they keep returning to office.

  61. 61
    Asteele says:

    Obama surrendered in january 2009 when he refused to push a sufficient stimulus because of concerns about the deficit.

    I think its a bad idea to personalize these things. The democratic party (including Obama) fucked up in 2009 when they didn’t push through a big enough stimulus, and it’s basically why they lost in 2010, and why 2012 is shaping up to be a blood bath.

  62. 62
    Blue Neponset says:

    @Zifnab:

    The man simply was not designed to handle the “Fuck you, I’m driving this car off a cliff” Republican-style politics.

    QFT

    What the Repubs are doing isn’t the crane technique. There are ways to counter it. Obama just isn’t up to the task. I can’t imagine Hillary would have been either.

  63. 63
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @kindness:

    I mean, Americans want a light at the end of the tunnel. They want a map of how to get there. They don’t really want it to happen now ‘cause tightening up the government spigot will sink the economy even more

    I don’t think there’s widespread comprehension, even among Democrats, that government spending is a good way to create jobs, and that cutting government spending is a good way to destroy jobs. I’d be interested to hear open-ended responses from focus groups about the proposition that government spending creates jobs. I would guess that a lot of people would say that government spending was a “handout,” or would lead to higher taxes, hurting everyone else’s pocketbook. It seems obvious to us: the government should spend money on things, and hire people to do work that needs doing, with borrowed money if necessary, because when people get paid they circulate money, which helps the economy. But that story needs to be rebooted from scratch and told all over again, because too few people believe it, including–as I said a moment ago–a lot of Democrats.

  64. 64
    jl says:

    @cat48:

    Do you remember which pundit said

    ” I heard a pundit say that the prez was humiliated by the Downgrade ”

    I find that difficult to believe.

  65. 65
    D.N. Nation says:

    I wrote the Krugman = fat comment in question, and I own it; the unending hack parade at the NYT is worthy of Thomas Nast, both in pointing out the perils of their politics AND in mocking their physical attributes.

    If that’s a problem, well, I don’t really care.

  66. 66
    Marc says:

    For a bunch of free-thinkers, the Obama critics sure seem to coalesce around very simple-minded purity tests.

    I think that Obama has actually turned the tax issue strongly against the Republicans, and this is an example of the short-sighted nature of his opponents. He staked out a “moderate” position, and exposed the tax radicalism of the wingers. Their position is extremely unpopular and they cannot abandon it because the nutcases will primary them.

    So he turned back extreme and deadly short-term budget cuts – but didn’t press for a doomed effort to extract more spending from a bunch of fanatics. Which is more important?

    The online left answer is as depressing as it is wrong.

  67. 67

    except, the president did surrender in his attempt to get a “balanced approach” to deficit reduction.

    Stop it. Not getting revenues raised has nothing to do with surrendering anything, and has nothing to do with Krugman not acknowledging the deal of long term deficit reduction as something he should support, because it is part of the solution.

    And what did Obama get with the deal. The wingers surrendered the debt ceiling raising and gave that authority to Obama for the rest of his term, and after the election.

    There is going to be a supercommittee with enforcement triggers of cutting defense and medicare providers. This is a fucking win, as both of those things are progressive goals. And have been for a while. The wingers gave up their golden goose of mil spending AND provider cuts they kept out of the ACA, when dems wanted them in it.

  68. 68
    Trurl says:

    In other words, Cole, you’re so full of shit it’s coming out your ears.

    vastleft’s skit sums up the Obots’ full-of-shitness nicely:

    – Remember saying Obama would do great things?

    – Turns out, the presidency’s a weak, irrelevant office.

    – Then, no worries if he’s not re-elected!

    – And let Michelle Bachmann become the most powerful person in the world?

  69. 69
    Blue Neponset says:

    They don’t keep electing Republicans. The Democrats kicked ass in 2008. Don’t blame the dumb ass voters. They gave the Dems ample opportunity to succeed.

  70. 70
    sherifffruitfly says:

    As long as Americans – white Americans in particular – continue to overwhelmingly vote for republicans for high offices, all cries to blame the black guy will fall on my deaf ears.

    FDR had 3:1 congressional majorities. Amazing how much “spine” magically appears in a President’s back, when he has a 3:1 congressional majority.

    Fuck you, firebaggers.

  71. 71
    jl says:

    It is true, and puzzling to me, as for example Jennifer said above, that public opinion as reflected in the polls have often strongly supported positions more progressive, more liberal, and which are actually better public policy than Obama has supported.

    Examples are ending tax cuts for the wealthy, public option, Medicare bargaining for drug prices.

    I have given up trying to diagnose Obama and mainstream Democratic thinking. I will work hard to get a Democratic Congress next election, for fear of what will happen if the crazies gain more power.

  72. 72
    dm9871 says:

    Why do people think that trying to get something that you want and may not get has no effect on your ability to get it?

  73. 73
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Zifnab:

    The man simply was not designed to handle the “Fuck you, I’m driving this car off a cliff” Republican-style politics.

    No one has ever had to handle that, though. This is all happening because Republicans bottled up Clinton’s initiatives, so Clinton took up some Republican ones, the Republicans gleefully agreed (much to the chagrin of 1990s progressives), and Clinton got wins and credit out of that. So the next time there was a Democratic president, the Republicans, led by Mitch McConnell, decided that what they’d do is block everything, by any means necessary, even stuff that Republicans actually like, so that Obama can’t get any credit for winning. The Republicans aren’t going to stop doing that until they lose an election, if then.

  74. 74
    ObamaBot2012 says:

    @boss bitch:

    And it’s that fact that the Democrats don’t kowtow to the left like the House Teapugs do to the teabaggers.

    Other than Dennis Kucinich (who has gotten NOTHING done) what lefty reps do the emoprogs have in Congress? Alan Grayson was soundly defeated last fall and is running again next year, and Anthony Wiener was done by his wiener, nice set of values there… and these emobaggers have the nerve to say that President Obama is aloof, too Republican, too right wing, bending too much for Wall Street, a sellout, a traitor… and these are the same emobaggers have their heads up Hamsher/Greenwald/Huffington/Kos ass who do more to keep corporate America alive and well than they accuse President Obama of doing.

    At least Krugman has the courage to admit that the emobaggers are jealous of the Teapugs. The Teapugs actually do the work that the emoprogs are too lazy to do. I mean it’s one thing to wish for a dozen Alan Graysons in the House and across the nation, it’s a complete different thing to work to make that a reality, and the emobaggers would rather bitch and whine behind a computer screen than get out there and make their voices heard. FWIW, the folks in Wisconsin and Ohio made their voices heard: two Walker Republicans recalled in Wisconsin and Kasich’s anti union crap now on the November ballot in Ohio, and it has Kasich running scared. The emoprogs would have allowed the Republicans to win in Wisconsin and done nothing to stop Kasich in Ohio and blamed it all on President Obama “not caring for the middle class.”

  75. 75

    IIRC, Krugman was critical when Obama put increases in Medicare eligibility age on the table, which is an outright benefit cut, and bad policy in that it might make the US health care expenditure crisis worse.

    Aside from the headline of The President Surrenders, I am pretty sure Kthug has been using the narrative of it’s bad to even talk about medicare at all right now. i just don’t have the time right now to dig up his past writings on the issue, but am pretty sure I heard jump on the leave medicare alone bandwagon.

  76. 76
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Asteele:

    Obama personally screwed up when he inexplicably dismantled his ’08 campaign apparatus which could have been used to get his tremendous base…the people who raised billions for him and voted him into office…to put pressure on their congress critters to pass legislation Obama wanted to see enacted. Furthermore, it’s like no one cared what happened in ’10, and the base didn’t turn out, and the usual midterm election trend (the party not in the WH picks up congressional seats) took hold.

    Part of the reason was I think Constitutional scholar Obama wanted the Congress to take the lead in many areas that they’ve become accustomed, over the last few decades, in allowing the President to do so. Thus our Imperial Presidency. But Obama’s error there is you don’t take on the nation’s problems with the power relationship with Congress you think you should have, you take it on with the power relationship you’ve got…which means greater initiative on the part of the WH.

  77. 77
    Klaus says:

    @boss bitch: No, I said politics, not policy. No stimulus now, because it’s not politically possible anymore. There was a window in the beginning of the term, now it’s gone, and it turns out bad economic policy is also bad politics.

    Any decent political scientist will tell you this – the economy determines most elections. The ‘political advisers’ don’t know the science, though.

  78. 78
    Violet says:

    @Jeffro:
    I know. I can’t keep it all straight. John is posting about what some commenter on Balloon-Juice said about Paul Krugman’s comments on the Obama administration’s decisions and tactics. Did I get that right?

    I feel like I’m in elementary school. Suzy said that Sally said that Sarah said the teacher wasn’t doing her job right. Or something like that.

  79. 79
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @jl:

    It is true, and puzzling to me, as for example Jennifer said above, that public opinion as reflected in the polls have often strongly supported positions more progressive, more liberal, and which are actually better public policy than Obama has supported.
    __
    Examples are ending tax cuts for the wealthy, public option, Medicare bargaining for drug prices.

    They like those things, but they don’t like paying for them, and when they’re repackaged as giant tax hikes and lost liberties, a whole lot of them change their minds.

  80. 80
    Alex S. says:

    In my humble and totally unqualified opinion, Paul Krugman is not always right, but very often, more than almost any other pundit. Also, it’s not quite true that his policies are popular, or let’s say, it’s just half the truth, because some of the austerity measures are popular as well. That’s the schizophrenia of the electorate, cut spending, but not for me.

    Krugman is a unique player. He chose to jump into the politics arena, he could have just stayed on the sidelines like Joe Stiglitz or Paul Volcker. Krugman is more than just an economist, he’s also a pundit, so he’s got to take political considerations into account.

  81. 81
    Zifnab says:

    @Blue Neponset:

    There are ways to counter it. Obama just isn’t up to the task. I can’t imagine Hillary would have been either.

    You know, I don’t even know. Part of me wants to say the Hillary would have known what to do, and that she and the Big Dog would be kicking down Republicans left and right. Part of me thinks about how she handled her Presidential campaign and suspect Hillary would have totally screwed the pooch.

    I think you’re right, there is a way to disarm the GOP tactics. But I’m not really clear what that method is. I think having the media against Obama is really making things difficult, and that there’s no much you can do politically if every move you make gets painted in the most negative possible light. His options are extremely limited.

  82. 82
    OzoneR says:

    @boss bitch: I believe this is the first time I learned Krugman grew up on Long Island. That explains alot

  83. 83
    Skipjack says:

    As long as Obama thought there was an off-chance he could wrangle a deal or Grand Bargain or what have you, it wouldn’t have made any sense to be confrontational or hostile and scare off any Republican votes. It’s not about being a wuss (duh, he made it to President) or not caring about shared priorities (ditto). All the reports are that he is now sharpening his rhetoric, and from a position of looking like he tried his hardest but gosh darn it those dad blasted Republicans wouldn’t let anything happen even to help regular folks. It is good politics, and again he isn’t talking to us, we’re already convinced.

    He’s now talking to people and more importantly by taking on their concerns he is listening to them. When lots of people say “what about the debt?”, brushing it off with “That’s not important right now and here’s why blah blah” is going to come off like not caring about their concerns to the people whose vote he doesn’t already have. Even if he reframes their concern he still has to give validity to their experience of it. Plus, we really do have more debt than we are used to or should be comfortable with. I’m comfortable with taking on more for now until the output gap shrinks noticeably but I have to admit it’s a counter-intuitive, non-soundbite argument. In fact all soundbites would go the other way and be used against us.

  84. 84

    @jl:

    I have given up trying to diagnose Obama and mainstream Democratic thinking. I will work hard to get a Democratic Congress next election, for fear of what will happen if the crazies gain more power.

    Thank you for this comment. It should be a model for those unhappy about a number of things dems and Obama have not yet accomplished, or disappointment of things done, that you don’t agree with. I have those too, but seem to spend all my time defending against the never ending stream of bullshit by others. Such is the bane of an Obot.

  85. 85
    Anya says:

    Should we expect a post from HuffPo about how John Cole called Krugman fat? Maybe Ezra and Greg Sargent will also write a column about how John Cole was throwing progressives under the bus.

  86. 86
    Jennifer says:

    @Zifnab: As I noted above, a white guy would have an easier time kicking asses and taking names than either Obama OR Hillary would, though I think it’s more risky for Obama than it would have been for Hillary for the “angry black man” reason.

  87. 87
    chopper says:

    k-thug is right on a lot, and like cole mentions, he misses the ‘optics’ a lot. while the public does support a lot of what krugman supports, the thing he’s been railing about recently is spending and deficits, and it appears that the public, while putting jobs ahead of it, is on the opposite side of the room than krugman is.

    spending cuts and belt-tightening have been the central economic issues for a bit now. krugman can bitch and moan all he wants about more spending and ignore-the-deficit-for-now and more stimulus, but no president could get away with those in this environment, tho the president is probably going to at least try to push for more stimulus. the people have spoken, and they support at least nominal austerity measures. they want the gummint to tighten up spending. they have for a while now, actually.

    the fact that the president has cut deals such that a lot of the spending cuts are pushed far into the future where they’ll have less of an actual ‘austerity’ effect goes to show he really is doing more with the hand he’s dealt than the firebaggers are willing to give credit for.

  88. 88
    jl says:

    @dm9871: I agree.

    There is that old lawyer joke, if you have the facts, pound the fact, if you have the law, pound the law, if you don’t have either, pound the table.

    It seems to me that the reactionaries understand the importance of advocating their case. Sometime between 1980 and now, they have given up pounding the facts (since they have none) and have been pounding the table for quite awhile.

    I think Obama should be pounding the facts harder and more often. You have to keep it up, making your case even though you may lose a few. If you don’t you will keep losing.

    And this point is related to the issue of Obama’s problems getting good legislation through Congress. What has Obama done to change the debate so that he has a better chance of getting a decent Congress. The post partisan stuff did not work out so well in 2010.

    I hope whatever Obama is up too works out better in 2012.

  89. 89
    OzoneR says:

    @Zifnab:

    The man simply was not designed to handle the “Fuck you, I’m driving this car off a cliff” Republican-style politics.

    and that’s a good thing because if we ever had a Democrat who do, we’d all be shooting at each other in the streets.

  90. 90
    chopper says:

    @Zifnab:

    I think you’re right, there is a way to disarm the GOP tactics. But I’m not really clear what that method is.

    the method by which you can ‘disarm GOP tactics’ is not the sort of method a president can apply in a country where most people want ‘nice bipartisanship and comity’.

  91. 91
    Blue Neponset says:

    @Zifnab:

    I think having the media against Obama is really making things difficult, and that there’s no much you can do politically if every move you make gets painted in the most negative possible light. His options are extremely limited./blockquote>

    Clinton got the same treatment as Obama. If no Democratic President can figure out how to deal with the Press then we will always be behind the Republicans who play the Press like a fiddle.

    One thing the Republicans did was use direct mail to find and reach out to voters who would support their ideas. That obviously wouldn’t work so well know, but in the internet age I am sure there are plenty of ways to bypass a hostile press or at least defang them. If the Republicans can do it so can the Democrats.

  92. 92
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Part of the reason was I think Constitutional scholar Obama wanted the Congress to take the lead in many areas that they’ve become accustomed, over the last few decades, in allowing the President to do so.

    I think this is a very important and frequently overlooked point. Much of what We the Commentariat want from the WH is properly speaking the job of Congress. Obama has invested much of his political capital the first 3 years in working with the powers that be in Congress to get our national sausage factory back into production. Maybe this was a bad decision, but if he had gone the other more confrontational route I think his legislative record at this point would probably look more like Harry Truman’s than LBJ’s, and we’d probably be as bad off or worse (than we are now) in terms of the political landscape going into 2012.

  93. 93
    OzoneR says:

    @Jennifer:

    As I noted above, a white guy would have an easier time kicking asses and taking names than either Obama OR Hillary would, though I think it’s more risky for Obama than it would have been for Hillary for the “angry black man” reason.

    also woman are more numerous and political active on a national scale than African-Americans.

  94. 94
    Asteele says:

    Obama personally screwed up when he inexplicably dismantled his ‘08 campaign apparatus which could have been used to get his tremendous base…the people who raised billions for him and voted him into office…to put pressure on their congress critters to pass legislation Obama wanted to see enacted. Furthermore, it’s like no one cared what happened in ‘10, and the base didn’t turn out, and the usual midterm election trend (the party not in the WH picks up congressional seats) took hold.

    I don’t disagree, and certainly Obama has made both political and practical mistakes. I just feel the larger problem with good economic policy in the United States, is that the democratic party isn’t very good at advancing it.

  95. 95
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    I bet Paul Krugman worships Satan too.

  96. 96
    Violet says:

    @Zifnab:

    I think having the media against Obama is really making things difficult

    I think the media is more FOR the horse race rather than against anyone. They want conflict because it means eyeballs on them. If it’s a love fest for Obama, they don’t have any conflict. If, say, teabaggers are screeching against Obama, then there’s conflict. Yay!

    Their desire for conflict/eyeballs coupled with their inherent laziness with regard to reporting and truth, and need to play the “both sides” game (“Some say sky is blue. Views differ.”) means there’s little hope of getting the media on Obama’s “side.”

  97. 97
    jl says:

    @FlipYrWhig: Well that just moves the question to why insane transparently lying reactionary swindlers are allowed to do all of the repackaging. Your comment seems to assume that.

    I hate the US corporate media, but do you think the unions had much of the media of their time on their side. Or in the Great Depression? So, it not just a matter of the media being worthless, though it is nearly worthless.

  98. 98
    Skipjack says:

    Also if Hilary knew just what to do, don’t you think she’d be telling the President what she thinks? It’s not like she doesn’t have his ear.

    ETA: So much criticism, so much of it based on personal preference rather than convincing anyone who would not read Balloon-Juice under any circumstances. Those are the people who will decide the election.

  99. 99
    jl says:

    @jl:

    I meant to type:

    “unions had much of the media of their time back in the 30s on their side, ever?”

  100. 100
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @dm9871:

    Why do people think that trying to get something that you want and may not get has no effect on your ability to get it?

    It has an effect. But sometimes it’s a negative one, in that by losing a pitched battle over a big issue you reduce politicians’ appetite for resuming that battle anytime soon. For instance, Clinton’s HCR failure made the whole area of HCR toxic for at least a decade.

    Obama can rattle his saber about all the things he wants to do but is being prevented from doing. It’s a solid reelection campaign strategy. But if the objective is actually to get something in the general area actually voted on, it’s not going to help. And it won’t be accurate to suggest that the reason why the good things aren’t becoming tangible policy is that he didn’t talk aggressively enough about them. Although that won’t stop people from saying it over and over and over again.

  101. 101
    OzoneR says:

    @Blue Neponset:

    That obviously wouldn’t work so well know, but in the internet age I am sure there are plenty of ways to bypass a hostile press or at least defang them.

    a lot of it depends on if people we reach are interested in being reached. The left coalition includes a lot of anarchist and liberaltarian thinkers who will just throw away what we sent to them or laugh off whatever we tell them. The right doesn’t have that.

  102. 102
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    I think we all know nothing can be done except to drive around in circles lost. But it’s weird to be flaming the guy with a map who keeps consistently pointing out the correct turn.

    You’re not driving Paul! You don’t know how to drive! Shut up about the goddamned map!

  103. 103
    Martin says:

    @kindness:

    I doubt Americans know what the hell they are talking about much of the time.

    No, I think they do more than the polls suggest, but there’s a much larger puzzle here and the polls only look at 1-2 pieces at a time.

    + They want jobs stimulus.
    + They want deficit reduction.
    + They want revenue increases, but are skeptical of just tacking on x% on the top earners. They’re MUCH more in favor of closing loopholes that favor folks that can afford accountants vs those that can’t.
    + They are skeptical of dumping money in the economy arbitrarily, which is what the stimulus advocates are generally calling for. They want a plan, but nobody has offered a plan to address the fact that consumer spending is almost $2T below 2008 levels – and unemployment is only a part of that.

    The truth is that we’re never going to see a plan to get back to 2008 because we never should have been at 2008 to begin with where consumers were wildly overspending. But nobody knows what 2008 should have looked like instead, and nobody on the left wants to look that problem in the face either.

  104. 104
    OzoneR says:

    @jl:

    do you think the unions had much of the media of their time on their side.

    they didn’t need to, all they needed was equal time.

    But there wasn’t much of a media back then. People read newspapers and listened to the radio, the main way they got news was through conversation, so unions and politicians can reach people directly and give them their message, not go through 15 filters first.

  105. 105
    Jeffro says:

    @Violet: The schoolkids comparison is spot-on…especially their card games…

    ROMNEY plays RELIGIOUS BIGOTRY card, slyly slipping it under OBAMA’s pile first…

    OBAMA plays JOBS CREATION card after missing a turn or two…still somewhat effective…

    PERRY plays SWAGGER card and earns two TIRESWINGING cards from LAMESTREAM MEDIA pile…

    PALIN walks through game…no one notices…

    lol

  106. 106
    aisce says:

    @ villago delenda est

    when he inexplicably dismantled his ‘08 campaign apparatus which could have been used to get his tremendous base…the people who raised billions for him and voted him into office…to put pressure on their congress critters to pass legislation

    bullshit. you’re completely ignoring those voters’ own agency. if they don’t do shit as engaged citizens, that’s on them, not the president. they shouldn’t be allowed (nor want) to sit back like robots waiting for OFA to flip their on switch. that’s not an excuse.

    the right thoroughly out organized the left 2009-2010, and while some of that comes from the top down, most of it has to come from the bottom up. people were ready to coast on the 2008 victory and were unprepared for the rightwing insurrection and the work that would have to be done to counter it in this economic environment.

    @ stuck

    Not getting revenues raised has nothing to do with surrendering anything

    because the president never advocated a balanced approach? never tried for a “grand bargain,” perhaps? never tried to break down the false choice between spending cuts vs. revenue raises?

    the president clearly swayed the public to his position. he beat the republicans on the politics of taxes. but he ran up against the clock and congressional intransigence and abandoned the effort. that’s fine. but don’t act like it was something he wasn’t pushing for.

  107. 107
    OzoneR says:

    @aisce:

    the president clearly swayed the public to his position. he beat the republicans on the politics of taxes. but he ran up against the clock and congressional intransigence and abandoned the effort. that’s fine. but don’t act like it was something he wasn’t pushing for.

    I think you just admitted he’s incapable of pushing Congress to vote for his ideas, which is all we’re saying.

  108. 108
    Davis X. Machina says:

    And polls be damned, the most important thing to remember is they keep electing Republicans.

    People vote labels, not policies. Johnathan Bernstein keeps stressing this. Perry’s penchant for supporting loony and borderline-loony positions isn’t necessarily going to hurt him in an election. (h/t Steve M. at NMMNB.)

  109. 109
    Jeffro says:

    VILLAGE plays HORSERACE CARD…all players, no matter what level of proficiency or quality of hand, to be kept at same pace and status for 99% of remainder of game…

    lol

  110. 110
    dm9871 says:

    @FlipYrWhig

    You’re right, sometimes fighting for what you believe in makes it less likely to happen in the future. But sometimes it makes it more likely.

    I’m a death penalty abolition activist. That’s a pretty tough sell to the American people. But we’ve been winning some lately – Illinois, New Mexico, and New Jersey all recently passed bills abolishing the practice. In all three of those states we had previously fought for abolition and failed in legislature. In most situations see failure as a prelude to winning. We also have failed recently in CT, MD, CO and MT, and in most of those states we’re going to win in the next couple of years.

    So you may be right that in the case of Obama, fighting may be futile. And it may make further success harder. But that’s far from an obvious fact. In fact, my own view is that the opposite is true. Obama, adopting Hooverite talking points is going to make it harder to adopt FDR-ish policies in the future, even if he gets reelected.

  111. 111
    kwAwk says:

    This is 100% accurate, and I spoke carelessly. The public does support the policies that Krugman advocates. They overwhelmingly support liberal positions in poll after poll. But they also support generic notions of deficit cutting and are hopelessly susceptible to rhetoric about “cutting back in hard times,” And polls be damned, the most important thing to remember is they keep electing Republicans.

    The problem as I see it is that nobody is out there selling the American people on these policies on the Democratic side. The Democratic Party has no leader at this point in history because Obama doesn’t really want the job. We wants to be the rational non-partisan guy in the middle.

    None of our elected officials want this role because of the possible backlash they’d get for undermining the President.

    It’s too bad Obama won’t put Dean back in charge of the DNC, or an Alan Grayson type. Somebody, anybody we could rally around.

  112. 112
    boss bitch says:

    @OzoneR:

    I believe this is the first time I learned Krugman grew up on Long Island. That explains alot

    You meant this for me? I don’t get it. ‘splain please. :)

  113. 113
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @jl:

    Well that just moves the question to why insane transparently lying reactionary swindlers are allowed to do all of the repackaging.

    They don’t do all of the repackaging, but they do a lot of it. And IMHO who it works on the most, with the most harmful effects, is moderate-to-conservative Democrats. From a campaign standpoint, they fear getting tarred with the tax-and-spend brush, so when initiatives are liable to getting tagged that way, they crumble. And from a policy standpoint, they truly have a real issue with anything that costs a lot of money and isn’t paid for.

  114. 114
    Marc says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead:

    My version of your analogy: Krugman is yelling that Obama’s route is a long detour, and ignoring the fact that there is a bridge out on the “short” route and there are snipers trying to shoot people approaching the bridge.

  115. 115
    jl says:

    My opinion about GOP media tactics is that they did not spring full formed and omnipotent from the forehead of Carl Rove, or Atwater, or Tricky Dick. The GOP true believers, alternative history/reality fans, swindlers and crooks persistently worked on them for decades, despite losses and severe set backs.

    This long term building process may be easier for them because they are financed by very rich people with very long time horizons, and as long as their hacks kept slinging the propaganda, a nice income was waiting for them.

    That is the real advantage they have. I think Obama had intended to create some kind of alternative base for that kind of long term effort, but when he abandoned his campaign base, that was gone. I find that one decision very puzzling.

    I am not ambitious enough to run for president or anything even close, but lazy ass little old me would never ever give up an asset like that. Why would anyone give up an asset like that?

  116. 116
    OzoneR says:

    @kwAwk:

    It’s too bad Obama won’t put Dean back in charge of the DNC, or an Alan Grayson type. Somebody, anybody we could rally around.

    yes, because both Howard Dean and Alan Grayson did a fantastic job selling the policies where they were in a position to do so.

  117. 117
    OzoneR says:

    @boss bitch: comment above yours

  118. 118

    @aisce:

    but don’t act like it was something he wasn’t pushing for.

    Only Obama and his inner circle likely know whether he was all that serious about a “grand bargain”. What isn’t in doubt is the general knowledge by anyone who follows politics, and I think the prez kind of does, that expecting the GOP to pass ANY tax increases these days, is magical thinking. They haven’t voted for a tax increase since Grover started his pledge in the 80’s, and they are a far crazier party now days, compared to then. You can make your own guesses to Obama’s intent, but it was never going to happen as long as Obama insisted on tax increases for revenue with a grand bargain, and he did not waver on that score.

  119. 119
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @chopper:

    not the sort of method a president can apply in a country where most people want ‘nice bipartisanship and comity’.

    I don’t think most people want this. In fact I think a fair fraction of the electorate on both the left and the right would prefer something more akin to an ongoing civil war. But where ‘bipartisanship and comity’ scores well is with the very thin slice of the electorate who decide which way the country tilts from one election to the next by swinging from one party to the other, depending on how they feel that cycle. And thanks to heavy gerrymandering of Congressional districts, this very small group in the middle of our political spectrum enjoys political leverage vastly out of proportion to their actual numbers.

  120. 120
    pluege says:

    But they also support generic notions of deficit cutting.

    so does Krugman – LONG TERM – NOT NOW. too much subtly for the American dolt?

    Also, it would not be unusual at all (in fact more common than not) for the American voter to simultaneously ascribe to, i.e., be for two 100% contradictory notions. It’s what keeps the republican lie machine rolling.

  121. 121
    Corner Stone says:

    “Nothing can be done!”

  122. 122
    kd bart says:

    RosiesDad.

    Bellmore JFK Class of ’81.

    Michael Kors and he are our two most famous graduates. Amy Fisher is our most notorious non graduate.

  123. 123
    gak says:

    Krugman primary obama – what a GREAT idea! I’m there in a skinny minute.

  124. 124
    OzoneR says:

    @jl:

    I think Obama had intended to create some kind of alternative base for that kind of long term effort, but when he abandoned his campaign base, that was gone. I find that one decision very puzzling.

    I don’t see he abandoned his campaign base, my inbox was full of OFA “get organized” stuff after the election and throughout this administration.

    What I saw is a lot of his supporters just check out. They got the black Democrat elected, stimulules and cramdowns and public options didn’t interest them.

  125. 125
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @Marc:

    My version of your analogy: Krugman is yelling that Obama’s route is a long detour, and ignoring the fact that there is a bridge out on the “short” route and there are snipers trying to shoot people approaching the bridge.

    So yer saying Krugman is trying to get the president ki11ed?

  126. 126
    cat48 says:

    @jl:

    It was on CNN on the weekend & I had not seen her before so I don’t know. Don Lemon’s show, early evening. I only watch CNN on the Weekend so don’t know all their names.

  127. 127
    Marc says:

    @dm9871:

    Your opinion (of his “hooverite rhetoric”) is received wisdom in the online left. I look at the stimulus, and his various attempts to get short-term money to people, and actually see a president who is a traditional Keynesian. But he is adopting a verbal style which is different.

    What is the better political argument? Well, Obama has the republicans on the defensive on taxes; he’s about to roll out some job plans; and he has established credibility with the actual fiscal conservatives with that rhetoric that the armchair quarterbacks in the online left detest so much.

    If this was about tactics, as opposed to being about simple tribal hatred of Obama as a traitor democrat, people would be cheering his recent tone. Instead it’s never enough, because the online left hates Obama. Period.

  128. 128
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @dm9871:

    I’m a death penalty abolition activist. That’s a pretty tough sell to the American people.

    Kudos to you. No snark, genuine thanks. The same could be said for same-sex marriage (where one of my former college roommates has spent his career). But I think both of those examples show that diligence and doggedness pay off when you’re willing to go slow and also willing to stay local. A big national push to abolish the death penalty would IMHO be tremendously counterproductive to the cause of getting the death penalty abolished, because it would release the Kraken and spook the kind of “centrist” politician who is willing to do the right thing but wants to stay out of the spotlight and not be targeted by the media and other demagogues.

  129. 129
    Erin says:

    I for one think Paul Krugman is a handsome looking guy despite the professorial paunch. Also his beard and nervous mannerisms make him even cuter. Despite sounding “shrill” on paper, he is not sound strident at all when he’s publicly speaking. I wish he would get out more on the TV.

    Jonah Goldberg on the other hand looks like a creepy pedophile.

  130. 130
    Xenos says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    People vote labels, not policies.

    They vote brands, just like they have been conditioned to buy brands and to think of themselves as consumers rather than citizens.

    And since they have been sold the idea that they are the tough, authentic Tareyton Smokers, they would rather fight than switch.

  131. 131
    Asteele says:

    Marc

    My version of your analogy: Krugman is yelling that Obama’s route is a long detour, and ignoring the fact that there is a bridge out on the “short” route and there are snipers trying to shoot people approaching the bridge.

    Or as seems likely, the Obama route is Republicans control all three branches in 2012, their obstruction on big deficits goes away immediately, the economy improves and they get the credit. Gee it’s 1980 all over again, maybe we’ll get the presidency back in 2024.

  132. 132
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Marc:

    Krugman is yelling that Obama’s route is a long detour, and ignoring the fact that there is a bridge out on the “short” route and there are snipers trying to shoot people approaching the bridge.

    I think you just wrote Speed 3.

  133. 133
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @aisce:

    No, not bullshit.

    People need to be led, they need to be inspired. Obama turned some of that off once he was inaugurated. Around HERE you can blame people for agency, but we’re all political junkies. Most Americans are not. They get complacent, and Obama got complacent with them, in my view.

    If he had kept things going, maintained at least some of the energy of the campaign, kept people interested and motivated, it would have made a great difference.

    It also would have helped a lot of the Senate majority leader had a spine, or at least the set of balls that Nancy Smash has, but, alas, he does not.

  134. 134
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @OzoneR:

    Grayson was very useful in getting people fired up.

    And Dean, not that insufferable prick Emmanuel, was the architect of the victory in 2006. He ran a 435 district campaign, while Emmanuel wanted to “target” districts.

    THEN Emmanuel took credit for DEAN’S strategy, and the win.

  135. 135
    Ron says:

    @Blue Neponset: And what does anyone propose Obama do? Blackmail the GOP into voting for his policies?

  136. 136
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Marc:

    I look at the stimulus, and his various attempts to get short-term money to people, and actually see a president who is a traditional Keynesian. But he is adopting a verbal style which is different.

    Absolutely agreed. 117%. And that even goes to the infamous-for-some Household Analogy, which he never uses to say “We must cut now.” And I don’t recall his ever saying that cutting spending would instantly help the economy or create jobs. Instead he says that reducing deficits frees up money that the government can spend on progressive priorities.

  137. 137
    aisce says:

    @ozoner

    I think you just admitted he’s incapable of pushing Congress to vote for his ideas, which is all we’re saying.

    at which point, you should feel no particular shame in admitting that the president often has to surrender his own goals and aspirations in order to keep the government vaguely functioning.

    the only people who should see “surrender” as a horribly loaded term in a political context (where every player is surrendering policy goals on a daily basis to somebody somewhere) are those who believe the president can do no wrong, and those who believe he can do no right.

  138. 138
    kwAwk says:

    @OzoneR:

    yes, because both Howard Dean and Alan Grayson did a fantastic job selling the policies where they were in a position to do so.

    Hmmm…..Howard Dean was the Chairman of the DNC from February 12, 2005 – January 21, 2009. I seem to have fond memories of the two elections that happened in that time period.

    Grayson was somebody who excited Democrats. He was in a red district which is why he didn’t get re-elected, but that doesn’t mean he wouldn’t be a good national spokesman for the party and a good counter balance to the likes of Eric Cantor.

  139. 139
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @jl:

    That is the real advantage they have. I think Obama had intended to create some kind of alternative base for that kind of long term effort, but when he abandoned his campaign base, that was gone. I find that one decision very puzzling.

    This. Anyone who didn’t see the Reagan landslide as in part a result of the Republicans’ longstanding Southern strategy wasn’t paying attention. The Democratic party doesn’t stick with any overarching strategy for more than one election cycle. The Republicans doubled down when Clinton was elected and they did so again when Obama was elected. The Dems, meanwhile creep farther to the right while forlornly hoping that the Hispanic juggernaut, or the youth vote, or some other chimera will pull their chestnuts out of the fire. The Republicans throw red meat, at least rhetorically, to the most far-right (And energized) members of their base and it often works. When someone suggests that the Democrats do the same, even rhetorically, for the hippies the response is more hippy punching.

  140. 140
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Xenos: I have always maintained that even for a lot of politically engagé people, politics really isn’t about policies. It’s about telling the world, and their friends, and the people they know how they feel about things. It’s a form of self-expression, by their choice of consumer products politics and politicians.

    Hell, If they could go down to town hall and register “Apple” or “Scion” instead of “Democrat” or “Republican”, they’d do it in a heartbeat, and turnout would average 80%

    Look at the pragmatic difference between an insurance-purchase-through-exchanges mandate with and without a public option available on the exchange in an environment where something like 15% of the insured would be eligible to even make the selection. The putative difference between the prices of policies in the market with and without the public option was supposed to usher in the millennium. 15%, or even 30% of 15% is what?

    “Public Option” became a brand.

  141. 141
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @aisce:

    Futhermore…

    the right thoroughly out organized the left 2009-2010, and while some of that comes from the top down, most of it has to come from the bottom up. people were ready to coast on the 2008 victory and were unprepared for the rightwing insurrection and the work that would have to be done to counter it in this economic environment.

    So, the top on the Dem side did next to nothing to counteract this trend. By all mean, let’s blame the followers, not the leaders. This is pretty much the opposite of how I was trained as an Army officer.

    Which is where, again, I put the blame on Obama. Again, look who his chief of staff was at the time…a guy who opposed Howard Dean’s strategy in 2006, then took credit for the win of a strategy he didn’t support.

  142. 142
    NR says:

    @aisce:

    bullshit. you’re completely ignoring those voters’ own agency. if they don’t do shit as engaged citizens, that’s on them, not the president.

    If you want people to vote for you, you have to give them a reason to vote for you.

    Warmed-over Republican corporatist policy from the 1990s isn’t going to cut it.

  143. 143

    don’t cure Medicare or Social Security, etc.

    Really? I would think the public wants to cure medicare if it’s ailing, and nobody disagrees that it is, outside the prog fever swamp, reaching the insolvent point in a few years, while the Boomer folks retire, if overall medicare care costs don’t come down, or are not forced down with something like MEDICARE PROVIDER freaking cuts. Recent reports are encouraging that another Obama sellout fail capitulation, the ACA, is showing some signs of doing that. Tell me again, why Americans are against such a thing.

  144. 144
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    And Dean, not that insufferable prick Emmanuel, was the architect of the victory in 2006. He ran a 435 district campaign, while Emmanuel wanted to “target” districts.

    Agreed. But the way it’s been remembered in Left Blogistan is often distorted. Both Emanuel and Dean backed “blue dog” candidates; neither one applied litmus tests for liberalism. Let’s not forget that it was Dean who said he wanted the Democratic party to be the party for guys with Confederate flag decals on their pickup trucks. Neither one was advocating a more uniformly liberal slate of candidates. IMHO the blogosphere treats Emanuel as trying to push the party to the right, but Dean’s 50-state strategy got a lot of conservatives elected as Democrats too.

  145. 145
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Dennis SGMM: The Democratic party doesn’t stick with any overarching strategy for more than one election cycle.

    I’d say this is a case of ‘it doesn’t have to’ and ‘it can’t.’

    “It doesn’t have to” insofar as since the mid 90’s at the national level, until 2010, the winning margin could be got by picking votes out from between the couch cushions. Who was the last GOP president to win in a walk?

    “It can’t” because it, to a much larger extent that he GOP, a coalition party. Any comprehensive exercise in drawing lines in the sand for “real Democrat” status in a naturally fissiparous party has a real risk of boomeranging.

  146. 146

    When someone suggests that the Democrats do the same, even rhetorically, for the hippies the response is more hippy punching.

    PO thangs. Come over here, Stuck has a cookie for ya.

  147. 147
    Marc says:

    OFA is extremely organized here in Ohio, and they’re assisting with a lot of other things (like the SB5 recall.) They are going to be extremely effective in the 2012 election cycle.

    OFA is not, however, serving as a political pressure group between elections. That would be valuable, but is there any precedent at all for a presidential campaign doing something like that?

  148. 148
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @FlipYrWhig: “This is the Left, sir. When the legend becomes fact, print the legend.”

    Liberty/Valence 2012.

  149. 149
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Ron:

    what does anyone propose Obama do? Blackmail the GOP into voting for his policies?

    As far as I can tell, the proposition is that he should take his case to the people, get the people on his side, and then the people demand that their representatives vote in the Obama-endorsed way, and then the representatives do it because they want the people on their side too. It’s an appealing theory. But Republicans don’t play that.

  150. 150
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Davis X. Machina: Ha. I read the end of your comment first because of that odd scrolling tic WordPress seems to think is a “feature.” As soon as I saw the word “fissiparous,” I knew it had to be one of yours.

  151. 151
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Voters 65 and over, 2010 general election, +19R.

    Voters 65 and over, 2008 general election — +10R. The only time in the last forty years anyways, the 60 and over vote didn’t go to the eventual president.

    Voters 65 and over, 2006 midterms, +0 (in the House)

    These are the most reliable, climb-over-broken-glass-to-vote voters out there.

    What happened in ’08? That was still true, or truer in ’10.

    I’m not sure that you need to organize some voters.

  152. 152
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @FlipYrWhig: Dean was the guy who got modern IT into the hands of grunt-level Democrats — we saw real walk lists e.g., the kinds the Republicans had since forever, for the first time when he was chair. With them, you can do local legislative races with some confidence that your efforts are well directed. Much of what Dean did was invisible to the outside world.

    And you know what — it didn’t stop when he left.

  153. 153
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    Yeah, but what that all to conveniently doesn’t tell us is what happened to the 30 and below voters.

    It tells us that a lot of seniors went R (did those same people all vote in ’08, but switch sides? Can’t tell from what you’ve presented). But then again, a lot of these people are confused about where Medicare scooters come from.

  154. 154
    Samara Morgan says:

    they keep electing Republicans.

    only in Distributed Jesusland™

  155. 155
    Samara Morgan says:

    Krugman might be fat, but he is also an economic classicist.
    I’m beginning to suspect the freed market can’t get us out of the dumpster on jobs. How can the same policies that put us here get us out, however you tweak them?
    we need something else.

  156. 156
    Bruce S says:

    There’s good reason that Paul Krugman is fat – he’s been trying to stimulate a demand-driven economic recovery by increasing his consumption. The man is a paragon of consistency.

  157. 157
    Derf says:

    You have no clue Cole!

    “100% accurate, and I spoke carelessly. The public does support the policies that Krugman advocates”

    Where are these people that support nationalizing the banking industry same as was done in Sweden? You must have brain damage and the inability to remember things said and done more than a few days out.

    Where are these people that still agree that the banking industry WILL fail if we don’t nationalize it? Remember that one too? Didn’t think so.

  158. 158
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    then again, a lot of these people are confused about where Medicare scooters come from.

    They compartmentalize. That’s not “Big Government” because they totally earned that scooter by working hard for a lifetime. It’s not like some kind of handout! Sigh.

  159. 159
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @General Stuck:

    That’s sweet but I’m too fat already. According to the latest Gallup polls, Obama has a 26% approval rate on his handling of the economy and his job approval rate dropped to 39% this Monday. Now that might just suggest that somehow, he’s doin’ it wrong right now. I think that at any other time Obama might have been a great president. He had the misfortune to be elected at a point in history where his strengths are minimized and his weaknesses are magnified.

  160. 160
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: 30 and below voters turned up in’08, in unprecedented numbers — but not in ’10.

    But it’s not Obama. They never turn up in mid-terms — never did.

    The under 30 vote in 2004 increased by 4.3 million over 2002.

    In 2006, the under 30 turnout was up by only 1.3 million over 2002.

    Meanwhile the elderly have in 2008 going forward become a solid Republican block, where heretofore they voted only slightly to the right of the whole country.

  161. 161
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @FlipYrWhig: They are not confused about the color of the President, however.

  162. 162
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @Dennis SGMM:

    That’s sweet but I’m too fat already. According to the latest Gallup polls, Obama has a 26% approval rate on his handling of the economy and his job approval rate dropped to 39% this Monday. Now that might just suggest that somehow, he’s doin’ it wrong right now. I think that at any other time Obama might have been a great president. He had the misfortune to be elected at a point in history where his strengths are minimized and his weaknesses are magnified.

    See, that kind of crazy talk is why everyone wants to punch you hippies. Obama is all kinds of awesome. Only firebagger kruggers don’t get this. Everything he does is magic.

    He’s got this. Repent, sinner.

  163. 163
    RJPJR says:

    For those suggesting that Krugman should jump in and run if he is going to criticize Obama, I think his response would be that he realizes he would make a lousy president. The problem is that Obama doesn’t seem to realize the same thing, nor do all the people defending him here.
    For those criticizing Krugman’s take on politics, and trying to dismiss him as simply an economist- you seriously y need a reality check. Krugman correctly predicted how Obama’s handling of the stimulus and the bus tax cuts were horrible politics, and unless you did the same you should probably keep your mouth shut. You are correct when you say that new stimulus, etc. has no chance of passing; but that is primarily because the idiots in the Obama administration decided to pretend the first one was big enough, when everyone knew it wasn’t. And if your response to that is that more stimulus would never have gotten through anyway, then we need to ask ourselves if that is true, and we were bound to fail no matter what; why the hell are we adopting non sense positions that undermine our core principles. It would be one thing to sell out if you had a chance of success, but if you don’t than it is simply stupidity to not stand by your convictions.
    And as a final note, please realize that every time you offer these pathetic defenses of Obama you simply make it less likely that people like me are going to vote for him. If he wins it will be because people simply cannot tolerate the Republican candidate, and if that is the case there is no need to alienate other liberal leaning people by criticizing their critiques of Obama. Your undying loyalty to Obama no matter how incompetent and pathetic his performance is what allows him to sell out his base at every turn, and quite frankly if all we are capable of doing is passing failed policies, we are probably better off letting a Republican do and have their ideology dragged down by the failure of those policies then to let it happen to ours.

  164. 164
    Tonal Crow says:

    If

    1. Voters “overwhelmingly support liberal positions in poll after poll” but

    2. “they also support generic notions of deficit cutting and are hopelessly susceptible to rhetoric about “cutting back in hard times” and

    3. “they keep electing Republicans”

    What that means is that Democrats need better rhetoric so that voters will elect Democrats who will enact liberal policies.

    Can it be any clearer?

  165. 165
    Bruce S says:

    I don’t think any commenter here has chosen a more appropriate “nom” than General STUCK. Stuck, indeed! Reading his commentary – and this thread is a classic in his “genre” – is reminiscent of the kind of apologia one used to get from sectarian ultra-leftists who had an explanation for absolutely everything to cover their ass regarding the “correctness” of one or another peculiar ideology, leadership clique or Promised Land they had invested in. Stuck is equally “stuck.” A classic “left” pathology – almost a purification ritual really – is on display, transferred – bizarrely – to the White House as embodiment of the “correct” Democratic party line. A strange reflection of what he purports to oppose.

  166. 166
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    Ah, but that right there is the thing.

    Obama’s campaign in ’08 was unprecedented, in that it was financed by small donations in numbers that dwarfed anything McCain could counter with.

    The actual spirit of all the campaign reform initiatives from the 70’s on was fulfilled, at last, without the cumbersome bureaucracy of the tax return checkoff system.

    A lot of people got involved. Many of them young people. That’s where the fuckup was. He didn’t keep them involved. That’s where the inspiration he provided to all those people in 08′ failed to materialize in ’10.

    I don’t know if the teabaggers caught him off guard, or his staffers dismissed it as “astroturf” without seeing that even though it was top down organized, it got the base energized. The Obama people seemed to have that DOWN in ’08 and lost it in ’10. They didn’t counter Armey and the Club for Growth and Americans for Prosperity. They just did not. It’s like they didn’t care.

    And it cost them. Blaming the followers is the wrong answer. You need to lead. He did that, in spectacular fashion, in ’08.

    In ’10, not so much.

  167. 167
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @Martin: I thought only the unemployed cared about unemployment?

  168. 168
    gogol's wife says:

    @Alex S.:
    Paul Volcker knows way too much about politics to ever play the role Krugman seems to have decided to play.

  169. 169
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @Bruce S:

    I don’t think any commenter here has chosen a more appropriate “nom” than General STUCK. Stuck, indeed! Reading his commentary – and this thread is a classic in his “genre” – is reminiscent of the kind of apologia one used to get from sectarian ultra-leftists who had an explanation for absolutely everything to cover their ass regarding the “correctness” of one or another peculiar ideology, leadership clique or Promised Land they had invested in. Stuck is equally “stuck.” A classic “left” pathology – almost a purification ritual really – is on display, transferred – bizarrely – to the White House as embodiment of the “correct” Democratic party line. A strange reflection of what he purports to oppose.

    Stuck’s a Republican-turned-Independent (so he says) so it might be useful to view his nonsense through that lens.

  170. 170

    @Dennis SGMM:

    LOL, polls go up and down. And the ones we have today all show the country blames the republicans more than Obama, and give him favorables above 50 percent, and maintains record levels of support from his dem base, with near 3/4 wanting him to get nominated, where at the same point in the same poll, only 57 percent wanted Clinton to be renominated for 1996. And that is on top of even higher approval numbers for self described “liberal dems” He is getting lower overall numbers from indies, who are flakes that can change their minds with the weather.

    If the wingers were doing better in the same polling and had a candidate that wasn’t either insane or boring as dirt, then those CURRENT low numbers would be worrisome indeed. But they don’t have that, so the current national polling does not worry me much, long as the dem base sticks with him, and they are, despite blathering on the blogs to the contrary. But nice try. Obama will be out with a new jobs plan soon, and we will take it from there. when congress comes back. and I am sure that good internet progressives will be whining every step of the way, all 6 dozen of em/

  171. 171
    gogol's wife says:

    I love the fact that we’re supposedly Obots worshipping the Great Leader, but if anyone dares to say anything critical about Mr. Krugman, all hell breaks loose. I don’t think he’s fat, but I do think he writes in bad faith and helps the wrong side all the time with his own “bully pulpit.” He wouldn’t be treating Hillary Clinton this way, and it’s not because her policies would have been that much different from Obama’s.

  172. 172
    Citizen Alan says:

    @jl:

    I hate the US corporate media, but do you think the unions had much of the media of their time on their side. Or in the Great Depression? So, it not just a matter of the media being worthless, though it is nearly worthless.

    Not getting into this thicket tonight (not in the mood), but I did want to offer a quick response to this: A big part of the Democrats’ problem isn’t just that the MSM is hostile, it’s also that the MSM is monolithic. During the Depression, we didn’t have TV news at all, let alone a 24-hour propaganda network devoted to pushing a corporatist agenda. Folks read newspapers and there were a lot more of them. Hell, many large cities had one or more soshulist newspapers! Media consolidation destroyed the infrastructure of everything that could legitimately be called “the liberal media.”

  173. 173

    @Just Some Fuckhead:

    Stuck’s a Republican-turned-Independent (so he says) so it might be useful to view his nonsense through that lens.

    And you are a political psychopath, that no one takes serious. Never been a registered republican, but lying on the internet is cheap for head cases like you.

  174. 174

    @Bruce S:

    Yea, right. And this comment by you is somehow credible. Sounds like you swallowed a vile of thorazine. Make sense with your insults, otherwise you sound like a blog version of Howard Beale.

  175. 175
    Bruce S says:

    OFA is not, however, serving as a political pressure group between elections. That would be valuable, but is there any precedent at all for a presidential campaign doing something like that

    ?

    No, but they shouldn’t have sucked up that air by calling themselves “Organizing for America” for two years and claiming to be something other than keep a shell in place for future electoral campaigns or as a vehicle to make phone calls for “legislation on the table.”.

    There was a tremendous organizing opportunity after Nov. ’08 that OFA squandered – my beef with them isn’t that they are what they are, but the pretense that they would be more. There was a promise at the beginning of ’09 about moving into an issues-organizing mode, and then it was – probably deliberately – quashed by letting it just die out for lack of any follow-up or leadership. Pretty shabby and deceptive. Political malpractice and it hurt Obama, with no aggressive, creative counter-force at the grassroots to go on offense against the slings and arrows of the Tea Party.

    I’ve had first-hand experience with the group in Oakland, and they are almost unbelievably lame. They “organize” an email list. One of the “organizers” admitted they didn’t know what to advocate around health care reform until a bill was on the table. That’s a sign of total idiocy IMHO – especially when the Tea Party was mobilizing in full force. They operate like traditional campaign operatives. That’s it. Pathetic, given what could have been “organized for America.”

  176. 176
    OzoneR says:

    @Dennis SGMM:

    I think that at any other time Obama might have been a great president. He had the misfortune to be elected at a point in history where his strengths are minimized and his weaknesses are magnified.

    well then sucks for us.

  177. 177
    cleek says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    The Obama people seemed to have that DOWN in ‘08 and lost it in ‘10.

    coattails. people liked Obama and were willing to get off the couch and vote for him specifically. but he wasn’t on the ballot in 2010. and i suspect there’s a big difference between running your own campaign based on your own charisma and vision and trying to help other people in their campaigns.

  178. 178
    eemom says:

    look, if we’re gonna keep having this same old argument day after day, week after week, month after month until November 2012, howzbout a little variety in the nomenclature.

    imo a spectrum has opened betweeen the poles of Obot and firebagger. There is now NUANCE — i.e., people like me who are no longer strict Obots but certainly not firebaggers. And there are others who are different places along the spectrum, e.g., Flip, who imo is pretty close to the middle, perhaps a 5 or 10 degree step in the direction of Obot.

    There need to be new classifications for we reasonable, thinking people moderates.

    And let me just preemptively tell Cornered Stone to go fuck himself. That done, any suggestions?

  179. 179
    OzoneR says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    a guy who opposed Howard Dean’s strategy in 2006, then took credit for the win of a strategy he didn’t support.

    and the Howard Dean strategy gave us a Congress that wouldn’t pass a larger stimulus, a public option, cap and trade and immigration reform.

    just sayin’

  180. 180
    Robert Waldmann says:

    On issues where Krugman agrees with Obama’s stated positions, the public agrees with both. But the public absolutely agrees with what Obama says about the deficit.

    Of course the public wants more jobs (who wouldn’t). But the public thinks that cutting government spending and cutting the deficit would be good for the economy and employment.

    To say that employment is important is not necessarily to agree with Keynes and Krugman. The public does not believe that deficits are good when the economy is in a liquidity trap.

    I think it is clear that Krugman understands that the policies he advocates won’t be approved. He argues that Obama should advocate such policies so the public knows whom to blame. This assumes that the public agrees that government spending (best if financed with deficits) would be good for the economy right now.

    The public says it is very important to do something for the economy and for employment and that thing is to cut public spending and the deficit.

    Public opinion is too complicated and confused to summarize as liberal or conservative. The public really really wants to raise taxes on rich people and to cut foreign aid by 10 times the current foreign aid budget.

    Basically you can learn about public opinion two ways. First look at polls (they aren’t secret, they don’t contain all the answers to all the questions (as in how intense are peoples’ opinions etc) and they are much better than asking your navel). Second look at every single thing that Obama says which frosts Krugman’s shorts. Obama says those things, because the majority of the US public believes them and arguing with the public is a bad way to run for re-election (or achieve anything anything at all).

    Also Krugman is not fat and clearly works hard. Plus he’s a genius and his understanding of the economy is immensely incomparably superior to that of the average winner of the Nobel memorial prize in economics (that’s damning with faint praise since averages are sensitive to outliers in the lower tail (Becker, Lucas and Prescott to name three).

  181. 181
    Bruce S says:

    Stuck – that wasn’t an insult. It was a description.

  182. 182

    @Bruce S:

    You are really attacking obama’s political and campaign creds, some mouthy fool commenter on the internet who can barely put a sentence together that is understandable. What kind of arrogant asses would attempt such a thing? OFA is doing fine, all bullshit blogging to the contrary being bullshit. Obama is raising lots of money and getting ready for another would class political campaign. You dipshits make me laugh at your pompous rantings, that Obama is doin it wrong.

  183. 183

    @Bruce S:

    Who can tell with your whackadoo scratchings. That is a description, also too.

  184. 184
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    @John Cole: “I don’t know how I can be clearer.”

    Just admit that Jane Hamsher was right. ;)

  185. 185

    @eemom:

    Oh eemom. There is really no such thing as Obots and Firebaggers, there are only people who care about facts, and those that don’t. You used to know that. Maybe not so much anymore.

    Folks can challenge me anytime on the assertions I make here.

  186. 186
    TK421 says:

    But they also support generic notions of deficit cutting and are hopelessly susceptible to rhetoric about “cutting back in hard times”

    I wonder why that is.

    Two years ago, the public overwhelmingly supported large federal programs, but today that support has eroded. What could have caused that?

  187. 187
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @OzoneR:

    In 2006 you still had the problem of the White House being in the hands of the Dark Lord, fronted by a deserting coward.

    In 2008 the House did its job. The problem is, the Senate did not, mainly because the Rethugs were able to use the threat of the filibuster to squash nearly everything. Futhermore, Reid didn’t hold their feet to the fire…he didn’t force them to ACTUALLY filibuster, that is, haul phone books into the well of the Senate and put their mugs on CSPAN2 24/7 showing everyone how they’re being obstructionist assholes.

    While it’s true that Dean got some blue dogs in, he at least made the full effort while Emmanuel was insisting on the strategy that won the House for the Dems in 2000, 2002, and 2004.

    I hope you see what I did there.

  188. 188
    OzoneR says:

    @Blue Neponset:

    The Democrats kicked ass in 2008. Don’t blame the dumb ass voters. They gave the Dems ample opportunity to succeed.

    and succeed they did, turning the economy from losing 700,000 jobs a month to gaining over 100,000. Passing landmark healthcare reform that stops abusive recession practices, instituting SCHIP, creating the CFPB, the list goes on.

    Not succeed enough, maybe, but who gets kicked out of the school for getting a B in the first semester?

  189. 189
    OzoneR says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    …he didn’t force them to ACTUALLY filibuster, that is, haul phone books into the well of the Senate and put their mugs on CSPAN2 24/7 showing everyone how they’re being obstructionist assholes.

    this doesn’t happen anymore. They don’t have to do that.

    he at least made the full effort while Emmanuel was insisting on the strategy that won the House for the Dems in 2000, 2002, and 2004. I hope you see what I did there.

    yes, you did, you put winning over principle, nice.

  190. 190
    MikeBoyScout says:

    Being aware of all internet traditions . . . ;-)
    the following is my forever findable testament to Dr. Paul Krugman.

    I’ve a BA in Economics because in our wonderful capitalist system knowing how the system works at some fundamental level enables me to feed my family and accumulate wealth.

    The #1 thing my expensive education taught me was that to be “successful” and accumulate wealth, I needed to learn so much more about our economic system.

    I’ve done well. I am not one of the 400 who together have as much as all the wealth of the 150 million at the bottom of the US wealth gap, but I’ve made a very good nut vis-a-vis most.

    I don’t have the candle power in any particular field, nor the good fortune to have landed in a field where any knuckle head can to get “rich” beyond having lucked in to being a white male, but I learned enough to read and study the work of Paul Krugman (and other prominent salt water economists)

    In the Big Casino which has become our “economy” since 1980 an idiot like me can bet the farm in the direction Dr. Krugman’s analysis shines the light on, and WIN every time.

    I neither begrudge nor wish to dissuade the right-wing, Koch dick sucking idiots to stop propogandizing against Krugman. The more idiots who will get on the other side of my bets in the Big Casino, all the better for me.

    What chafes my ass is that the man in the White House or has exponentially more candle power than I will ever have will not do the easiest thing any IDIOT could do.

    See, I’m and IDIOT. Not smart enough to know what to do or how to do it, and like John, likely to injure myself in the process.

    But for F*CK’S SAKE, how hard is it to read the blog and tell the minions “Do that.”?

    And thank-you Dr. Krugman. Because of your persistent commitment your discipline and setting high standards for yourself, I’ve been able to financially support my family.

    Fat! LOL. I’m short your house asshole.

  191. 191
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    Two years ago, the public overwhelmingly supported large federal programs, but today that support has eroded. What could have caused that?

    oh Jesus Christ, they NEVER OVERWHELMINGLY SUPPORTED large federal programs, you need to stop with this shit.

  192. 192
    OzoneR says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    I don’t know if the teabaggers caught him off guard, or his staffers dismissed it as “astroturf” without seeing that even though it was top down organized,

    Excuse me? WHO dismissed them as “astroturf?” Pretty sure I remember the brainiacs on the blogsphere saying they were astroturf and not serious.

  193. 193
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @cleek:

    Oh, so we fall back on conventional wisdom.

    You can talk about coattails, but what excited me about OFA ’08 that didn’t get me going like Gore or Kerry was that it was transformative in many ways, and I hoped that momentum would carry over as he tackled the issues of governance in a crisis situation created by his utterly incompetent predecessor.

    Didn’t follow through on the transformative part..it was back to business as usual once the party ended in Chicago. Hope. Change. Dashed, on both counts.

  194. 194
    OzoneR says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    but what excited me about OFA ‘08 that didn’t get me going like Gore or Kerry was that it was transformative in many ways

    how the fuck was it transformative? It was the same shit I saw with Kerry’s campaign except people involved were more excited because it was a black guy who was winning.

    it was back to business as usual once the party ended in Chicago.

    Three days after the fucking election, I got an OFA email telling me to send Obama my ideas for fixing the economy, what would you like to see done to make the economy function again. I’m willing to bet no one fucking responded.

  195. 195
    cleek says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Didn’t follow through on the transformative part.

    he tried. he’s still trying. he’s been telling people to tell their rep’s what they want. he’s trying to get Congress to do its job. he’s tried working with the GOP (that’s what all this much-derided “compromise” stuff is about)! he’s paying attention to what people say they want, in poll and poll. that’s what this deficit stuff is about – people say they care about it, so that’s what he does! he’s been trying to transform the way DC works, the whole time he’s been there.

    he’s tried. he hasn’t had much success, but he’s been trying for three years – much to the apparent consternation of his ostensible supporters.

  196. 196
    eemom says:

    @General Stuck:

    I care about facts, General. It is just that they depress the hell out of me.

  197. 197
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @OzoneR:

    Oh, I dismissed them as not being legitimate grass roots, in the sense that they were well organized and top down driven, and the numbers they were actually producing were much smaller in proportion to the attention that the Village gave them, and gives them to this day.

    I just can’t figure out why the Obama folks didn’t latch on to what was going on and realize that they needed to counter with their own top down organizing. You know, like they did to get the gig in the first place?

  198. 198
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @OzoneR:

    My congressman, Peter DeFazio, pretty much put forth exactly what I thought needed to happen. Massive investment in infrastructure to get the economy moving immediately, and down the road.

    DeFazio was ignored by the Obama White House.

  199. 199
    OzoneR says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    I just can’t figure out why the Obama folks didn’t latch on to what was going on and realize that they needed to counter with their own top down organizing. You know, like they did to get the gig in the first place?

    they did. Oh they definitely did. They organized meetings, phone banks, call your Congressmen parties, even marches, I went to one, 10 people were there. they did all of these things, but the blogsphere was too busy whining over no kangaroo court trials for bankers, what kind of trial terror suspects will get or unsourced quotes about him dumping the public option to care and the rest of the coalition just tuned it out because the election was over and it wasn’t exciting anymore.

  200. 200
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @OzoneR:

    Three days after the fucking election, I got an OFA email telling me to send Obama my ideas for fixing the economy, what would you like to see done to make the economy function again.

    Oh lord have mercy. Yer responsible for this mess?

  201. 201
    cleek says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    DeFazio was ignored by the Obama White House.

    how so?

    Obama’s been trying to get a big infrastructure plan since like day one. he even got some of that as part of the stimulus.

  202. 202
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    But you’re the one who pulled my coat about this survey:

    Pew Research Center: Fewer Want Spending to Grow, But Most Cuts Remain Unpopular

    The public’s views about federal spending are beginning to change. Across a range of federal programs, Americans are no longer calling for increased spending, as they have for many years.

    Since June 2009, there have been double-digit declines in the proportions favoring increased federal spending for health care (by 20 percentage points), government assistance for the unemployed (17 points), Medicare (13 points) and veterans’ benefits and services (12 points). Fewer Americans also favor increased spending on military defense (down nine points) and environmental protection (seven points).

    Would you increase, decrease, or keep spending the same for education? Increase 67%, Decrease 6%
    Would you increase, decrease, or keep spending the same for
    health care? Increase 61%, Decrease 10%
    Would you increase, decrease, or keep spending the same for Medicare? Increase 53%, Decrease 6%

    Etc.

  203. 203
    ObamaBot2012 says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    The party ended and reality struck, that President Obama wasn’t going to magically get single payer in the first month, that he wasn’t going to magically end DADT, that he wasn’t going to magically end the Republican party.

    What is telling to me about you emoprogs is that you call him spineless, yet you threw in the towel just six months in. He fought hard to get a stimulus package passed (that was happening with the Norm-Al Senate seat fiasco, the Blago Senate seat fiasco, and Ted Kennedy missing votes because of his illness), DADT repealed, new START, American Care Act, Dodd-Frank financial reform. What did any of you emoprogs do to get said accomplishments passed? Seems to me all you emoprogs did is bitch and whine, and you have the nerve to blame President Obama for what happened last fall, even though he was warning of the consequences of sitting out and doing nothing.

    You emoprogs apparently forgot change happens from the bottom up, have you not been paying attention to what has been going on in Wisconsin and Ohio? They didn’t wait for President Obama to go marching in with a bullhorn, they took on the fight themselves. Wisconsin got two of the Walker Union Busting Koch Republicans recalled, and Ohio has Kasich’s anti-union crap on the November ballot and have Kasich running scared, all without President Obama interfering or telling them to fight. THAT is what activism and grassroots is, not what you emoprogs do with bitching and whining over the Internet on blogs owned by corporatist whores like Jane Hamsher, Arianna Huffington, and Glenn Greenwald.

  204. 204
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @OzoneR:

    this doesn’t happen anymore. They don’t have to do that.

    Why?

    Why doesn’t it happen?

    Did everyone forget how the the Civil Rights bills were pushed through in the 60’s? Over actual filibusters with racist assholes droning on for hours, demonstrating to anyone who bothered to look what assholes they were?

    Why can’t it happen?

    Why can’t we make the Rethugicans OWN their obstructionism in a way that the American people cannot mistake?

  205. 205
    TK421 says:

    @cleek:

    The public says they want bipartisanship. And yet, the more president Obama is bipartisan, the lower his approval rating gets. I submit that there is a lesson there.

  206. 206
    cleek says:

    @TK421:
    yeah: the public doesn’t know WTF it wants

  207. 207
    OzoneR says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    My congressman, Peter DeFazio, pretty much put forth exactly what I thought needed to happen. Massive investment in infrastructure to get the economy moving immediately, and down the road. DeFazio was ignored by the Obama White House.

    No he wasn’t, not totally. $46 billion was allocated by President Obama in the stimulus for infrastructure, $8 billion to build a high-speed rail system, then Republicans ran against it, promising to cancel the projects…and then they won.

  208. 208
    NobodySpecial says:

    @eemom: In light of your actions during the PO, you asking for leniency in terms of labeling is a big fucking fail. Wear your label proud, girl – you earned it right alongside Stucky.

  209. 209
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421: yeah and? I said there were four things they wanted to increase spending on, none of them job creating.

  210. 210
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @cleek:

    Really? He has? All his leading advisers were against a big infrastructure effort. Too busy bailing out banksters, I guess.

    DeFazio tried, he made the case, was willing to carry the water on the Hill, and he was rebuffed.

  211. 211
    OzoneR says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Too busy bailing out banksters, I guess.

    now your firebagger is showing.

  212. 212
    NobodySpecial says:

    @TK421: Pew polls have been pretty consistent for 20 years or more – the ONLY category that they’ve consistently wanted to defund is space exploration. But that’s facts, and Stuck is impervious to ’em.

  213. 213
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @OzoneR:

    No. Not true. All this was going on in 2009. When the Dems owned the House. DeFazio pushed for it, and the Obama administration was lukewarm, at best. Summers, Geithner, and Bernake were too busy with stimulating the banks.

  214. 214
  215. 215
    TK421 says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Villago, I agree with what you are saying. But there’s an important point that needs to be added: the filibuster is a construct. It does not have to be. It only exists because the party with a Senate majority creates it. For a Democratic politician to say, in the past several years, “we couldn’t do it because of the filibuster!” carries zero weight. It’s their own fault, absolutely no one else’s.

    Make the Republicans actually filibuster? I say, destroy the filibuster.

  216. 216
  217. 217
    OzoneR says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Did everyone forget how the the Civil Rights bills were pushed through in the 60’s? Over actual filibusters with racist assholes droning on for hours, demonstrating to anyone who bothered to look what assholes they were? Why can’t it happen?

    Robert Byrd filibusters because he fucking wanted to make a show of it. He didn’t HAVE to do it. A filibuster is simply someone standing up and saying “I object to unanimous consent to move to a vote.” That’s all that needs to be said, then a vote is taken, if 60 is not reached, it dies. That’s what a filibuster is. It’s not talking forever. They can do it if they wanted to, but they do not need to.

    And even if they did, does anyone really believe the public is going to pay any fucking attention to them, or are they just going to dismiss it as “another show of dysfunction from our dysfunctional government, both sides do it?”

  218. 218
    MikeBoyScout says:

    Via another person one should follow in things economic:

    WASHINGTON — US Treasury bond yields plunged Thursday, with the 10-year yield hitting a record low as worries about a new recession in the United States and Europe battered stock markets.

    Nobody but the FAT men could have predicted!

  219. 219
    cleek says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Really? He has?

    yes. google can help.

    (i tried to post too many links and got sent to moderationland)

  220. 220
    OzoneR says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    No. Not true. All this was going on in 2009. When the Dems owned the House. DeFazio pushed for it, and the Obama administration was lukewarm, at best. Summers, Geithner, and Bernake were too busy with stimulating the banks.

    Prove it.

  221. 221
    TK421 says:

    @cleek:

    I think they do know what they want, and what they want is pretty clear.

  222. 222
    ObamaBot2012 says:

    @OzoneR:

    To add to your comment, the Howard Dean strategy was to kill the healthcare reform bill during the 2009 healthcare battle, because losing is such a virtue to emoprogs.

    I’ll also point out how not only did Jane Hamsher double down on Howard’s insane rhetoric, she actually attacked Vicki Kennedy because she endorsed what was being worked on in Congress and stated something to the effect that Vicki’s dead husband would never endorse that pile of shit. So we have some emoprog corporatist blogger attempting to speak for not only the liberal base, but also Vicki Kennedy and her deceased husband… and these emoprogs have the nerve and audacity to say they’re the ones fighting for progressive ideals and beliefs.

    As much as it burns the emoprogs to admit it, Rahm was right, they are retarded. They know Rahm was right so much to the point that they resorted to attempting to sabotage his Chicago mayoral bid. Mayor Rahm is having the last laugh, as are the rest of us who don’t buy the emoprog ranting and raving.

  223. 223
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    I think they do know what they want, and what they want is pretty clear.

    LMFAO, you can’t be this delusional

  224. 224
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    “now your firebagger is showing.”

    Why, because president Obama’s administration did not bail out bankers? Or because he did, but we’re supposed to pretend not to notice?

  225. 225
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    Why, because president Obama’s administration did not bail out bankers? Or because he did, but we’re supposed to pretend not to notice?

    because he didn’t. TARP was a Bush Administration program.

  226. 226
    cleek says:

    @TK421:
    is what the public wants exactly what you want?

  227. 227
    ObamaBot2012 says:

    @TK421:

    If I recall correctly, President Obama bailed out General Motors and Chrysler. The bank bailout was under President Bush, although then Senator Obama voted for the bank bailout, but ultimately President Bush signed it into law, so the bank bailout is his baby.

    Typical emoprog, can’t even get the facts right or in the correct context. And you folks wonder why you always stay losing.

  228. 228
    MikeBoyScout says:

    @222 TK421:

    Engaging.

    If you don’t understand and concede that we, the US government, stimulated the same damn banks and financial institutions which criminally caused the depression exponentially more than any other sector for the past 3 years, you are not paying attention.

  229. 229
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    Right, but the vast majority of bank bailouts came about through quantitative easing under the Obama administration.

    @cleek:

    “is what the public wants exactly what you want?”

    Surprisingly, yes, most of the public is like me: they want everyone to have a job, health care, a clean environment, etc. more than they want bipartisanship.

  230. 230
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    Right, but the vast majority of bank bailouts came about through quantitative easing under the Obama administration.

    The Fed did that, not the Obama administration, it’s two completely different entities and I’m not really sure where in your mind QE is “bailing out banks”

  231. 231
    cleek says:

    @TK421:
    oddly, that’s not what the public voted for, in 2010.

    i maintain my position: the public doesn’t know WTF it wants.

  232. 232
    ObamaBot2012 says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Have you not been paying attention to the debt ceiling debacle? Boehner crowed about how he got 90% of what he wanted, and David Axlerod and John Kerry used that moment to tie the downgrade of our credit rating around his neck, coining the term “Tea Party Downgrade.”

    Also, the Tea Party has a higher disapproval than even President Obama, also as a result of what happened during the debt ceiling debacle.

    Heck, Al Sharpton showed a clip at the beginning of his show this afternoon of a Teapug townhall where the crowd were yelling “BRING THE JOBS BACK!”

    The Teapugs are owning their obstructionism, all while President Obama stays above the fray and continues to be the adult in the room, and guess what? Come next year when he has to campaign, he can actually say that he was the reasonable one and that the Teapugs were the crazy ones willing to take the nation over the cliff to end his Presidency.

    You see, unlike you sniveling emoprogs, our President doesn’t live in media cycles where they manufacture drama and crises for ratings. He lives in the real world and thinks long term, which is why he is polling better than Congress, that includes even his own party. Most folks don’t want kabuki political theater, they want results, and Congress has been slow on delivering results… mostly due to the fact that the House Teapugs have focused more on making Obama a one termer, and Obama has used that to his advantage, being the reasonable one.

  233. 233
    OzoneR says:

    @cleek:

    oddly, that’s not what the public voted for, in 2010.

    I’ll give him one thing, the public probably does want those things, but for enough people, they hate liberals so much they’d be fine living without those things.

  234. 234
    Cacti says:

    I don’t care about Krugman’s weight. I do care that he’s a disingenuous sore head, whose criticisms of the President are about 50-90% sour grapes that Hillary lost.

    My personal favorite Krugman title when his BFF Bill was in office…

    In Praise of Cheap Labor

  235. 235
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    The Fed did that, not the Obama administration

    Sigh.

    @cleek:

    oddly, that’s not what the public voted for, in 2010

    Right. They didn’t like what they were seeing on the fronts they cared about, so many of them stayed home. I wasn’t surprised that millions of voters felt no burning need to vote for the Democrats who were expanding our pointless wars, doing too little about unemployment, and forcing them to buy insurance they did not want. Were you?

  236. 236
    OzoneR says:

    They didn’t like what they were seeing on the fronts they cared about, so many of them stayed home.

    yeah, uh huh, which is why Democratic turnout was equal to what it was in 2006 when they won Congress.

    I wasn’t surprised that millions of voters felt no burning need to vote for the Democrats who were expanding our pointless wars, doing too little about unemployment, and forcing them to buy insurance they did not want. Were you?

    No, and yet they turned out at the same level they did in the last midterms anyway…and still got creamed.

  237. 237
    TK421 says:

    12 USC 242

    …each member [of the federal reserve] shall hold office for a term of fourteen years from the expiration of the term of his predecessor, unless sooner removed for cause by the President.

    Who runs the Federal Reserve, again?

  238. 238
    ObamaBot2012 says:

    @TK421: Quit with your bullshit.

    The Teapugs got off their lazy asses and voted last fall, that is why they won. Where where the liberals to fight for Alan Grayson and Russ Feingold?

    Oh I see, must be Obama’s fault as well, even though Obama and FLOTUS Michelle both campaigned for Feingold.

    It’s shameful how you emoprogs continue to lie through your teeth, just like the Teapugs you supposedly despise.

  239. 239
    cleek says:

    @TK421:
    any asshole who couldn’t tell the difference between teaparty rule and democrat rule deserves every single fucking misery coming his way.

  240. 240
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    …each member [of the federal reserve] shall hold office for a term of fourteen years from the expiration of the term of his predecessor, unless sooner removed for cause by the President.
    Who runs the Federal Reserve, again?

    Apparently ex-presidents do.

  241. 241
    OzoneR says:

    @ObamaBot2012:

    Oh I see, must be Obama’s fault as well, even though Obama and FLOTUS Michelle both campaigned for Feingold.

    Glenn Greenwald made the case that Feingold lost because of Obama’s lack of exciting Democrats to vote.

    I wish I was there when he said, I would’ve asked him “then why did Heath Shuler win?”

  242. 242
    TK421 says:

    @cleek:

    Right, there are big differences. For instance, the Democratic party wants to cut federal programs that help people, whereas the Tea Party wants to cut federal programs that help people. The Democratic wants to cut taxes for the rich, while the Tea Party wants to cut taxes for the rich. The Democratic party wants to drastically increase oil-drilling and coal-mining, unlike the Tea Party, which wants to drastically increase oil-drilling and coal-mining. Etc.

  243. 243
    cleek says:

    @TK421:
    oy.
    that’s just too much.

    good night.

  244. 244
    sb says:

    @ObamaBot2012: It wasn’t just liberal turnout, though. I remember thinking that the lie about death panels could not possibly be taken seriously. Then someone here linked to data that seniors voted overwhelmingly Repug in 2010 because… they were worried about death panels.

  245. 245
    ObamaBot2012 says:

    @cleek:

    I have to once again point out that Krugman did admit that the emoprogs are jealous that the Tea Party are so successful, so of course emoprogs like TK421 want some of that from the Democratic side of the aisle.

    We all saw how left wing emoprogging fared for Alan Grayson and Anthony Wiener: Grayson kicked out of the House, and Wiener done in by his wiener. And the emoprogs 100% blame President Obama for both losses and if not President Obama, they’re blaming Rahm, the mayor of Chicago who wasn’t even in the administration last fall for the midterms or this year for the Wiener fiasco. These emoprogs spend more time targeting the President than they do the Teapugs!

  246. 246
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    The Democratic wants to cut taxes for the rich, while the Tea Party wants to cut taxes for the rich.

    which, of course, is why the President spent the last few months of the election campaigning on raising taxes for the rich.

    But thanks for pointing out Alan Grayson lost because he wanted to cut Medicare, taxes for the rich and increase oil drilling.

  247. 247
    TK421 says:

    12 USC 242

    …each member [of the federal reserve] shall hold office for a term of fourteen years from the expiration of the term of his predecessor, unless sooner removed for cause by the President.

    That’s what I should have done in the first place.

  248. 248
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    which, of course, is why the President spent the last few months of the election campaigning on raising taxes for the rich.

    But what has he done in office?

  249. 249
    ObamaBot2012 says:

    @sb:

    Yup. It was the senior citizens buying the lie that Obama Care would be their death panel that helped the Teapugs win.

    Also the rich/wealthy had major turnout, they too helped the Teapugs win.

    Like I keep on pointing out, the Teapugs got off their asses and voted, and they won. The emoprogs sat home, did nothing, and they blame the President for losing all those Democratic seats, even though he campaigned for plenty of them, including their hero Russ Feingold.

  250. 250
    OzoneR says:

    That’s what I should have done in the first place.

    oh really, what’s the “cause” to remove them? You do realize “cause” means criminal behavior? No, of course you don’t

  251. 251
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    But what has he done in office?

    LOL, guess that bully pulpit isn’t enough anymore, huh?

  252. 252
    ObamaBot2012 says:

    @TK421:

    He’s done as much as Congress has allowed, which if you look at in context, is plenty.

    But of course your emoprogging ideology won’t allow for context.

  253. 253
    Wee Bey says:

    It’s not that Obama didn’t cure cancer. It’s that he didn’t even TRY!

  254. 254
    ObamaBot2012 says:

    @OzoneR:

    LOL! The emoprogs want it both ways!

    They keep asking “Where is the President?” and then when he gets involved and it STILL causes them to lose, they say “He failed to excite and motivate folks to vote.”

    It’s amazing to me how emoprogs both say that President Obama is this savior that needs to rally to their aid, and he is a toxic poison that has set liberalism and progressive ideology back decades. They are cut from the same crazy cloth as the Teapugs. Difference is, the Teapugs actually got off their lazy asses and got these crazies in the House elected and gave them governorships, the emoprogs just continue to whine and bitch behind a keyboard and call that “activism.”

  255. 255
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    “LOL, guess that bully pulpit isn’t enough anymore, huh?”

    I don’t know what you mean, but though Obama campaigned on raising taxes on the rich, once in office he cut taxes on the rich.

  256. 256
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    @Dennis SGMM: “According to the latest Gallup polls, Obama has a 26% approval rate on his handling of the economy and his job approval rate dropped to 39% this Monday…”

    I haven’t looked at the actual polling data but lines like this are worthless. Great! But all this says is that the public is dissatisfied, it doesn’t say what side of the economic issues (eg: stimulus=bad/stimulus=too little) they are. Without that, all you knows is that people are pissed.

    Both sides use polling data this way to say ‘See, we were right! People are angry because our ideas are being blocked/ignored!’, misrepresenting the data to bolster their positions. Same with his job approval rate; this is being represented as proof that ‘they’ (activist left and right) are right and everyone else is wrong.

    Party/independent voter satisfaction polling is a better indicator of satisfaction than this claptrap.

    ETA: Not going after you Dennis, just that line in general. I’m tired of seeing it abused by the crazies.

  257. 257
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    “oh really, what’s the “cause” to remove them? You do realize “cause” means criminal behavior? ”

    What do you base that upon?

  258. 258
    Wee Bey says:

    His complicit silence adopts the right-wing frame of cancer curing being difficult and, thus, not worth pursuing, thereby rhetorically raping the cancer-curing movement, and murdering the cancer-dead all over again. Greenwald out.

  259. 259
    TK421 says:

    @Odie Hugh Manatee:

    I see what you mean, but most people who think Obama is too liberal never approved of him in the first place.

  260. 260
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    What do you base that upon?

    http://www.slate.com/id/1007348/

    Let’s say the president really, really hates the Fed chairman. Can he fire him?
    The president does have the power to remove a member of the Board of Governors, but only for cause. Cause in this case would mean something like the chairman got the keys to the vault and was found stuffing his pockets with bullion.

  261. 261
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    but though Obama campaigned on raising taxes on the rich, once in office he cut taxes on the rich.

    no, actually he didn’t. He extended tax cuts that already existed, I said he campaigned on them in 2010, which he did, and he lost, which is why he extended them.

  262. 262
    Jason says:

    @srv: Actually, I think Obama really does believe his stupid wingnut talking points. Obama is a lawyer, not an economist, and moreover the type of personality that flutters with the prevailing winds. His economic advisers have undoubtedly convinced him that the wingnut world view is the true one by this point.

  263. 263
    William Hurley says:

    @ObamaBot2012: Can you quantify or describe to some level of detail just how exactly impotent the most powerful person on the planet actually is.

    Quick question, who was it that proposed, framed and pushed for the President’s “National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform” a.k.a. the Cat Food Commission?

    One follow-up to that. Why did the individual who proposed and forced the creation of the above commission choose to put Social Security cuts, Medicaire cuts and Medicaid cuts on Congress’s To-Do list?

  264. 264
    Cranky Observer says:

    > Marc @30
    > For example, the polling data is crystal clear: the
    > public overwhelmingly wants deficit cutting. His
    > position on spending is deeply unpopular – and yet
    > he doesn’t engage this obvious political problem, ever.

    The polling data was crystal clear back in 2009 also: the public overwhelmingly wanted single-payer health care. Yet in that case Obama thought it best to ignore the public preference. Hmmm.

    Cranky

  265. 265
  266. 266
    OzoneR says:

    @Cranky Observer:

    The polling data was crystal clear back in 2009 also: the public overwhelmingly wanted single-payer health care.

    LOLWUT?

  267. 267
    OzoneR says:

    @William Hurley:

    who was it that proposed, framed and pushed for the President’s “National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform” a.k.a. the Cat Food Commission?

    Congress

  268. 268
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @Odie Hugh Manatee:
    I understand. The crux of it for me is that it looks like Obama is in a pretty deep hole. That he may become easy pickins for the Republicans is sad beyond belief. Depending on your POV you can attribute his difficulties to any number of things. The simple fact is that things haven’t become any better on his watch and voters outside the world of blogdom are likely to react to that in a very fundamental way.

  269. 269
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    no, actually he didn’t. He extended tax cuts that already existed

    In 2010 the “Bush tax cuts” expired, as Bush intended them to do. They ended. Period.

    Obama signed a repeat of those tax cuts–the “Obama tax cuts”.

    They are not the “Bush tax cuts” because George W. Bush did not propose, author, or sign them. In fact, George W. Bush held no elected office at all in 2010 so it was in every way impossible for there to be a “Bush tax cut” enacted in 2010.

  270. 270
    OzoneR says:

    The simple fact is that things haven’t become any better on his watch and voters outside the world of blogdom are likely to react to that in a very fundamental way.

    That depends on who they blame for it. Do they blame him or they blame Republicans and conservatives for obstructing him?

    “They won’t let me help you” is, despite all the left wing bickering, a strategy that can win. If it isn’t, and America is expecting a superhero, then we’re pretty much fucked as a nation anyway.

    The Republican strategy would not be tolerated in any other western democracy because the public would have punished them for it, but it works here. I say it works because the left, blogsphere and generally, doesn’t do enough to point it out (they just wait for Obama to do it). The left in other countries wouldn’t stand for it.

  271. 271
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    Congress

    This will sound mean, though it isn’t intended to be: don’t you get tired of being wrong?

  272. 272

    @William Hurley:
    A) Obama. Please add to your description ‘which produced absolutely nothing and has been ignored the way it was always going to be, like commissions of its type have been since time immemorial.’ If Obama had ever actually done anything whatsoever about the safety net cutting recommendations of that commission other than explaining in great detail why they’re stupid on national television, your question might mean something.

    B) At this point, I’m not sure what you’re talking about. Obama hasn’t put those things on Congress’s To-Do list. In fact, given the best opportunities any president’s ever had he’s failed to put them up at all. In fact, Obama pushed for and got the largest expansion of the safety net since the safety net was created.

    You are operating under conspiracy theory logic. Given the overwhelming evidence that Obama has increased and not decreased the safety net and his constant public statements dedicating himself to this, you are instead focusing on a single symbolic act of no practical importance and treating it like a secret code we refuse to see.

  273. 273
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    This will sound mean, though it isn’t intended to be: don’t you get tired of being wrong?

    When I’m wrong, I’ll let you know, but judging from what I see from you, it’s impossible to get tired of being wrong.

  274. 274
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    the left, blogsphere and generally, doesn’t do enough to point it out (they just wait for Obama to do it)

    Yes, I expect people to do their job. I usually refuse to do it for them. I have enough to do.

  275. 275
    TK421 says:

    @Cranky Observer:

    But the Democrats couldn’t enact single-payer, because of the filibuster that they, themselves put in place. So blame the Republicans!

  276. 276
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421: Obama’s job is to govern the country, not be your partisan mouthpiece.

  277. 277
    TK421 says:

    The National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform (often called Bowles-Simpson from the names of co-chairs Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles) is a Presidential Commission created in 2010 by President Barack Obama to identify “…policies to improve the fiscal situation in the medium term and to achieve fiscal sustainability over the long run.” The commission first met on April 27, 2010.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/N.....and_Reform

  278. 278
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    But the Democrats couldn’t enact single-payer, because of the filibuster that they, themselves put in place. So blame the Republicans!

    Democrats created the filibuster now, LOL, wow you’re way gone.

  279. 279
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @OzoneR:

    The banks deserved to go down for their foolishness, and 7% of the stimulus for infrastructure was a pathetic figure, which is why DeFazio voted against it. Instead, we need to bail out Timmy’s buddies on Wall Street.

    Obama went along with this, even though infrastructure has greater stimulus effect now and down the road, because it’s not just covering the bad bets of Timmy’s buddies.

    TK 421 has the right take on the banks…let the too big to fail ones fail, FIDC takes them over, executives fired and banned from the banking industry forever. Break them up into smaller pieces, and put regulations in place to make sure that they stay broken up.

  280. 280
    NobodySpecial says:

    @ObamaBot2012: This is typical bullshit designed to make some people feel better.

    Link

    The real story of 2010 was the precipitous decline in support for Democrats across most segments. African-Americans proved an exception, giving Democrats a 79-point margin in 2006 and an 80-point advantage in 2010. Among whites, though, Democrats collapsed from -4 to -23, while the margin among Latinos declined from +39 points to +22. Democrats lost white women by a single point in 2006, but by 19 in 2010.

    Rural voters proved a real battleground in 2006, when Democrats fell only three points behind with this segment, but lost them by 31 points this cycle.

    Perhaps the most dramatic disintegration of Democratic support was among independents, who gave Democrats a resounding 18-point victory in 2006, but four years later backed GOPers by a similar 19-point margin.

    It wasn’t the desertion of liberals that killed 2010, it was the mushy middle you guys keep chasing with GOP policies.

  281. 281
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    Obama’s job is to govern the country, not be your partisan mouthpiece.

    Not only is he supposed to govern the country, but he is also the titular head of his party. He should be talking up Democratic accomplishments and ideals. It’s not my job like it is his.

  282. 282

    @TK421:
    And I’m sure he’ll try and push through Simpson-Bowles’ safety net cuts *any day now* just like I’ve been told he would for well over half a year now. I mean, sure he didn’t do it two times when he could have claimed the GOP had a gun to his head, but maybe he’s waiting his moment?

    This is conspiracy theory logic. It’s like standing in the middle of a forest and saying ‘I see a rock. This must be a volcano.’ You’re also doing it marvelously by describing a gigantic expansion of the safety net and a huge package (which he rammed down the GOP’s throats) of regulations on the medical/insurance industry as deliberately sinking the public option.

  283. 283
    OzoneR says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    The banks deserved to go down for their foolishness, and 7% of the stimulus for infrastructure was a pathetic figure, which is why DeFazio voted against it. Instead, we need to bail out Timmy’s buddies on Wall Street.

    what part of the stimulus went to Timmy’s buddies?

  284. 284
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @OzoneR:

    I’d posit that the voters want results rather than excuses. The left blogosphere is populated by (Surprise!) the left. For most voters all they know is what they hear on the tube and what their own experience tells them. The left blogosphere can clap for Obama as hard as they can and they won’t be heard outside of the left. The lefties will all vote for Obama no matter how much some of them may bitch about him. It’s the job of Obama and the Democratic party to get a coherent and compelling message out beyond the blogosphere.

  285. 285
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    Not only is he supposed to govern the country, but he is also the titular head of his party.

    sorry, but he cannot and should not be both.

  286. 286
    OzoneR says:

    @Dennis SGMM:

    I’d posit that the voters want results rather than excuses.

    yes, which is why Republicans do what they do, because they can keep results from happening and force Democrats to only blame them- excuses.

    It’s the job of Obama and the Democratic party to get a coherent and compelling message out beyond the blogosphere.

    and they have one, “The Republicans won’t work with us,” but as you said, people don’t want excuses.

  287. 287
    NobodySpecial says:

    @OzoneR: Well, unfortunately for you, the rest of America disagrees and has for many many years now.

  288. 288
    SteveinSC says:

    Sorry I’m late to this Cole, but Krugman was right about the Iraq war way before you were, speaking of non-economics. So how about a little circumspection, moron.

  289. 289
    OzoneR says:

    Well, unfortunately for you, the rest of America disagrees and has for many many years now

    yes, which is why we’re in the hopelessly partisan situation we’re in now.

  290. 290
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    Democrats created the filibuster now, LOL, wow you’re way gone.

    According to the Supreme Court ruling in United States v. Ballin (1892), changes to Senate rules could be achieved by a simple majority. Nevertheless, under current Senate rules, a rule change itself could be filibustered, with two-thirds of those senators present and voting (as opposed to the normal three-fifths of those sworn) needing to vote to end debate. Despite this written requirement, the possibility exists that the filibuster could be changed by majority vote, using the so-called nuclear option, also sometimes called the constitutional option by proponents.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F.....tes_Senate

    *****

    A long line of Supreme Court decisions forbid former legislators from tying the hands of their successors. Thus, although current senators may choose to impose a supermajority rule on themselves, they cannot impose such a rule on a new Senate. Under the Supreme Court’s precedents, just 51 senators will have a brief opportunity to reform or eliminate the filibuster next January—but this opportunity will disappear if they do not act right away.

    Taken together, these two decisions open a narrow window every two years, when the Senate’s newly elected members take their seats. During this time, only 51 senators (or 50 senators plus the vice president) are needed to change the filibuster’s 60-vote threshold, eliminate the 30 hours of delay that the minority is allowed to demand between a successful cloture vote and a final vote on a filibustered bill, or even eliminate the filibuster entirely.

    The reason why the filibuster exists is because the rules of the Senate say that it exists. Article I of the Constitution provides that “each House may determine the rules of its proceedings,” so the Senate is allowed to create a rule requiring 60, 70, or even 100 votes before it can proceed with any business.

    The old Senate rules essentially cease to exist until the new Senate ratifies them, so a determined bloc of 51 senators could eliminate the filibuster altogether by demanding a rules change at the beginning of a new session.

    How to Kill the Filibuster with Only 51 Votes

  291. 291
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421: By the same token, couldn’t it also be the Republicans fault because they didn’t kill the filibuster when they had the chance in 2005.

    It’s funny to hear the left complain about something they were so desperate to protect six years ago.

  292. 292
    Dennis SGMM says:

    @OzoneR:
    Yep. This trap has been a long time in building and if anyone is responsible for its success it’s the leadership of the Democratic party. They have either ignored the GOP buildup or they’ve failed to come up with a counter to it. In either case they have failed and their failure is going to cost the rest of us dearly.

  293. 293
    Marc says:

    …and you ignore the reasons why removing the filibuster never had even close to 51 votes. It removes leverage from individual senators and makes it difficult for conservative democrats to win in conservative states.

    It’s a classic collective action problem. I agree that the filibuster serves no useful purpose. I can also understand why democrats couldn’t get the votes for a change. Do you?

  294. 294
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    “By the same token, couldn’t it also be the Republicans fault because they didn’t kill the filibuster when they had the chance in 2005.”

    Remember, though: Senate rules from the past have no bearing on the Senate of today. The existence (or not) of the filibuster is something each Senate decides for itself.

  295. 295
    OzoneR says:

    @Dennis SGMM: There is no way to counter it, except, as been suggested, get rid of the filibuster in the Senate, but even the left didn’t want to do that until AFTER it became a problem.

    In either case they have failed and their failure is going to cost the rest of us dearly.

    The people had the option not to elect more Republicans, they didn’t, they elected more Republicans despite their obstruction, they’re going to get what they deserve.

  296. 296
    TK421 says:

    @Marc:

    All I’m saying is, when the Democratic party votes to keep the filibuster, which they have the power to eliminate, I don’t want to hear later on “we couldn’t do it because of the filibuster!”

  297. 297
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Tonal Crow:

    If
    __
    1. Voters “overwhelmingly support liberal positions in poll after poll” but
    __
    2. “they also support generic notions of deficit cutting and are hopelessly susceptible to rhetoric about “cutting back in hard times” and
    __
    3. “they keep electing Republicans”
    __
    What that means is that Democrats need better rhetoric so that voters will elect Democrats who will enact liberal policies.
    __
    Can it be any clearer?

    That’s a solid reading. But there’s another one, embraced by people like Mark Warner and Claire McCaskill and Ben Nelon and Bill Nelson and Mary Landrieu and Joe Manchin and more. And it’s this: if people say they want cutbacks and balanced budgets, let’s give them that, and that way we negate the Republican advantage on those issues, and we can win instead by offering a minimal distinction on some local issue and tough talk about how we’re not like those wussy bleeding-hearts you probably presume Democrats to be.

    And they won that way. Center-right Democrats have been winning that way since the late 1980s.

    They don’t see it as a call for better progressive rhetoric. They see it as a call for less progressive rhetoric. And when they win, it reinforces their views. And there are dozens of them, and if Obama doesn’t keep them happy, he gets nothing. And that’s before the Republicans take _their_ hacks. Quite the state of affairs.

  298. 298
    TK421 says:

    @OzoneR:

    The people had the option not to elect more Republicans

    Too bad they didn’t have the option not to elect people who support wars in the Middle East, secret prisons, forcing people to buy health insurance, massive amounts of deportations, an endless war on drugs, etc etc etc.

  299. 299
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @eemom:

    And there are others who are different places along the spectrum, e.g., Flip, who imo is pretty close to the middle, perhaps a 5 or 10 degree step in the direction of Obot.

    I guess it’s nice to be mentioned, but I don’t even know if we’re talking about the same things anymore. I’m not really interested in talking about what Obama _should_ do, but instead I think it’s interesting to figure out why he’d be doing what he does. Often for me that takes the form of, “He can’t do something else because it’s being blocked” or “He can’t do something else because it’d obviously blow up in his face” or the like. Usually I figure that every conversation we’ve had has also taken place inside the Oval Office. I’m not so vain as to think that we’re coming up with such clever political suggestions that if only the czar knew he’d do the right thing and we’d all live happily ever after. I figure, they’ve been through this, they’ve gamed it out, and here’s what they’ve decided to do. I’ll pop over to Balloon Juice and try to reverse-engineer the process by which that probably happened.

  300. 300
    OzoneR says:

    @TK421:

    Too bad they didn’t have the option not to elect people who support wars in the Middle East, secret prisons, forcing people to buy health insurance, massive amounts of deportations, an endless war on drugs, etc etc etc.

    Yeah, where are Alan Grayson and Russ Feingold when you need them?

    oh wait, well Heath Shuler and Harry Reid won, and surely they don’t support wars in the…oh.

  301. 301

    @phil: Hmmmm…..and if he did Phil, what then?

    I mean, the MSM will only bring the Repubs in and start the he said/she said bullpucky that they normally do; the Repubs will scream “SOCIALISM!!” and then the MSM will start polling to ask if people agree, and the PL will cry that it’s not enough and that the President needs to come out and fight or scream some more or just open fire on Congress with an AK-47 with turned and taped clips.

    In other words, even if Obama were to say this, it’ll be ignored. The man has been talking about getting jobs and fixing things for months but it’s all drained out of our noggins because of the debt debate/clusterf**k and Rick Perry’s hair and Bachmann’s crazy eyes and the bus and….it goes on and on.

    At least, that’s how I see it.

  302. 302

    @FlipYrWhig:

    Mr. Whig. I have some good news. An example of the only way dems will ever move the Overton Window in their direction again, after 3 decades of it moving right, because that is what the public wanted. Rhetoric by liberals to convince the voters does not work well because it is about doing something, or government doing something via works, on the ground, in their community. That they can see, feel, and touch. Something that improves their lives.

    They listen to republicans, because republicans want to do nothing, and doing nothing can be expressed in only a few soundbites at a time, with messages directed to the primal fear center of the human mind, and come as nothing but lies. Because it is uncomplicated, doing nothing.


    Things like this,
    in my little burg in bumfuck, NM, are happening all around the country, unseen, except locally, or maybe statewide, but not part of the national political conversation. or, has ObamaCare reached out and touched you? If not, no worry, it will, eventually? And no rhetoric required, other than to say this was done by democrats.

    The question now is, like the new electric car plants going up from the Stimulus money, and a bunch of other long term progressive initiatives will carry on, even past Obama’s term, even if it turns out to be one. it will be a legacy to be proud of, for an ungrateful nation.

    Were it to be, those taking the time on blogs, and elsewhere in the pol speech arena, that those concerned liberals would spend their days touting successes like where I live, rather than spank the pol monkey with myopic eyes of simple minds addicted to defeat.

  303. 303

    @General Stuck: Shhhhh!! C’mon, General, don’t you know that actually pointing these facts out give people hope?

    (I kid, of course. The truth is as you pointed out–even though he’s got low polls–or at least with Gallup–Obama is still higher than the Repubs, Congress, and the GOP Presidential field right now.)

  304. 304
    OzoneR says:

    In all this, I noticed that not one person, not one firebagging moron, has pointed out the administration’s reversal on deportations today, which, might I add, I don’t necessarily agree with.

  305. 305
    boss bitch says:

    @OzoneR:

    Why? Just curious.

  306. 306
    MikeBoyScout says:

    Krugman’s being FAT confounds the markets in early Friday trading in the Asian markets as the Nikkei and Hang Seng drop precipitously.

    Nobody could have predicted!

  307. 307
    OzoneR says:

    @boss bitch:

    Why? Just curious.

    I think laws, regardless of how dumb they are, should be enforced, not selectively.

    Stuff like this is exactly why I think people running for Congress will be less likely to endorse changing the law, because they don’t need to.

  308. 308
    The Spy Who Loved Me says:

    The last time I saw a picture of Krugman that showed more than just his head and shoulders, he looked pretty chubby to me.

    I think the dude is pretty smart, but I can’t stand to listen to him. His voice is high and frequently squeaky.

  309. 309
    Joe Buck says:

    Yes, in the current climate it is not politically feasible to do the right thing: Republicans will reject anything that puts people to work, and some of them are quite open about making sure that Obama does not succeed even if that means that the country does not succeed. But given how much of a disaster it will be if we continue to do the wrong thing and join Europe on an austerity crusade, it’s the responsibility of the president to make the case to do the right thing, and if the current Congress won’t cooperate, use that to make a case to change the Congress.

  310. 310
    boss bitch says:

    @OzoneR:

    kind of like the DADT brouhaha early in Obama’s presidency?

  311. 311
    OzoneR says:

    @Joe Buck:

    But given how much of a disaster it will be if we continue to do the wrong thing and join Europe on an austerity crusade, it’s the responsibility of the president to make the case to do the right thing, and if the current Congress won’t cooperate, use that to make a case to change the Congress.

    Problem is we’re still more than a year away from our chance to change Congress and by then we are already way past Europe’s position.

  312. 312
    OzoneR says:

    @boss bitch: I completely opposed rescinding DADT by executive order and everyone should be glad he never did.

  313. 313
    boss bitch says:

    Paul Krugman is FAT and Keith Olbermann is a Douche – really. He made the author of the original post a part of his Worst Persons. Serious bitchassness.

  314. 314
    gwangung says:

    @OzoneR: Don’t a lot of people consider this a quintessential example of hippie punching? Yet, this was an example of difference of tactics and not end goal, wasn’t it?

  315. 315
    The Raven says:

    What kind of engineer would consider the politics of saying that a proposed bridge was risky and, if the engineer knew that giving his professional opinion would be unpopular, not give it? Does the engineering then apologize when the bridge fails, killing hundreds?

    Krugman is a scientist: scientific ethics oblige him to put scientific truth as he understands it ahead of any politics. It’s unfortunate that either it is not politically feasible to fix the economy or the Dems aren’t even willing to try or both, but that is not Krugman’s problem, and it very much to the shame of his critics that they refuse to acknowledge that he has the right of the matter.

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    El Cid says:

    @ObamaBot2012: Grayson would be a test case for your blame of “emoprogs,” but Weiner’s dick photos are most definitely not a suggestion that career-ending sex scandals are somehow “emoprog”. Weiner could have been the biggest center-right / conservative / whatever Democrat, and if he’s sending dick pictures out on Twitter, it’s going to have the same effect.

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    El Cid says:

    @The Raven:

    What kind of engineer would consider the politics of saying that a proposed bridge was risky and, if the engineer knew that giving his professional opinion would be unpopular, not give it? Does the engineering then apologize when the bridge fails, killing hundreds?

    This is unnecessary if you first favor, or have a system which favors, engineers less likely to see the collapse risk of the bridge as so easily determined. You can pre-determine the professional opinions by careful and/or systemic methods of artificial selection.*

    Of course, when bridges do fall down despite clear warnings of lack of repair and such, it’s still not relevant for the careers of the politician which ignored the warnings. It didn’t stop David Brooks from publicly jacking off about Mitch Daniels, tough guy budget cutter, either.

    * This is actually one of the points Krugman has been continually making about why the economics field so disastrously failed to grasp the onrushing crisis, and to this day is led and represented by economists who don’t base their analyses on any empirical reality or well-established economic arguments. Which isn’t new either. Though really Krugman sees it as an intellectual ‘failure’, and to me it’s just another artificial selection process to have professional opinions be the ones more desired by the powerful.

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    Howlin Wolfe says:

    @ObamaBot2012: The teabaggers get plenty of plutocrat money to use in effecting their agenda, as opposed to the progressive left. The MSM glorifies the teatards and misrepresents their significance (as a grassroots, rather than an astroturfing organization). So the envy is irrelevant; the funding of the respective interests is more important.

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    eemom says:

    @FlipYrWhig:

    fair nuff, and I certainly didn’t mean any disrespect to your POV.

    Perhaps the essence of where we differ is that I’ve lost patience with reverse engineering when the outcome leaves us in a worse place than we were to begin with.

    Again, it made sense to me with HCR, because for all the comprises — or “sell outs” depending on your firebagger level — the end justified the means, because the end was an improvement over the status quo.

    The debt ceiling debacle was NOT, and imo leaves us in a worse place than we were to begin with. At that point, I am much less interested in Obama’s deliberative process, because it is at that point that I have to question what is “doable.” Again, it ought not to have been “doable” for that tiny minority of fucktards to do what they did — but they did it.

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    William Hurley says:

    @OzoneR: You are incorrect.

    Wikipedia is not the be-all, end-all – but in this case the entry is accurate and is well sourced.

    Feel free to bring your understanding of the President’s own proposals and policy preferences into alignment with reality.

    Cat Food Commission v1.0

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    William Hurley says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: Sorry to disappoint you, but it was the President who conceived of, proposed, endorsed, established and framed the scope of Cat Food Commission v1.0. If you don’t like Wikipedia’s entries, feel free to follow the links provided to the sources substantiating the facts therein.

    If you’d be so kind, please do provide reference(s) to the disavowals of the commission’s work you claim the President issued – on national TV none-the-less.

    Once CFC v1.0 was created – by the singular act of the President with Executive Order # 13531, Alan Simpson and Erskin Bowles were picked to serve and act as co-chairs. Immediately after being named and approved, Simpson spoke about the necessity of cutting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid declaring that the Commission would include these programs in meeting its agenda of deficit reduction. Never mind the fact that Social Security has exactly no effect on the annual Federal budget or a given budget’s revenue deficits or surpluses.

    Simspon’s public campaign in defense of his decision to include these programs in the Commissions recommendations for cuts and roll-backs, marked by him regularly committing rhetorical offenses during numerous TV and radio interviews, the Commission’s sponsor – the President – made no effort to redirect Simpson and his allies back to the Commission’s stated objectives nor did the President use his authority as Chief Executive and creator of the Commission to corral Simpson and allies within the Commission’s mission statement – a mission the President himself singularly constructed.

    In the end, the Commission failed because the members could not meet their charter’s requirements in mustering sufficient support form among the members for the co-chairs’ own conclusions. Commission members who dissented from the Simpson/Bowles unsanctioned report have been very vocal about their experiences on the Commission. In support of advancing her dissenting views, and the report she and her allies produced out of the very same Commission, Rep Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) did the rounds on TV and radio. I strongly suggest you give her alternative report a read or take-in some of the interviews she – and her dissenting fellows – conducted.

    Lastly, any thoughts or perceptions of “conspiracy” are your own and are products of your own limited familiarity with the facts of this matter – complicated by what ever else populates your notions of Democratic politics and the President’s chosen courses of action.

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