Revision Of Labor

Gosh, I wish President Obama’s Chicago Machine thugs would quit rigging the economic numbers to make him look worse.

The U.S. economy grew at a 2.7 percent annual rate in the third quarter, the Bureau of Economic Analysis says. That’s a sharp upward revision in its estimate of gross domestic product growth from mid-summer into the fall. In its first look at the quarter’s GDP, the agency estimated growth at a 2 percent annual rate.

According to BEA, consumer spending, inventory investment, exports and federal spending all contributed to growth from July 1 through Sept. 30.

In the second quarter, GDP expanded at a 1.3 percent annual rate.

Also, jobless claims down to 393K.  Darn that economy, actually growing.  It’s like the guy knows what he’s doing with this whole “stewardship of the economy” thing.

I wonder where the economic numbers would be without the House GOP blocking all the big league economic boosters, ya know?

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76 replies
  1. 1
    p.a. says:

    Hey, not bad. This can only mean it is time for the Fed to put the brakes on.

  2. 2
    gf120581 says:

    This may be another reason why the GOP is losing what little sanity they had over their defeat. With all the things already going against them in the electorate, having Obama preside over a genuine economic revival in his second term would be nothing short of catastrophic for them. Not only would Obama get the credit for it, he would also be hailed as the man who cleaned up Bush’s (read: Republicans’) disaster and put the nation back onto the path of prosperity.

    Sound familiar? It was what FDR did and when that happened the GOP was locked out of the WH for 20 straight years. The combination of a booming economy and Hillary Clinton running for President in 2016 is an ultimate GOP nightmare that probably gives them cold sweats in the wee hours of the morning.

  3. 3
    the Conster says:

    Jack Welch haz a big sad.

  4. 4
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Someone’s falling into the overly defensive thing again.

    The economy actually sucks. It’s okay to say that. President Obama won’t lose re-election.

  5. 5
    Feudalism Now! says:

    The unemployment only went down because people have given up looking for work and pt/seasonal help. The growth in GDP is actually thanks to Romney and his spending of UNLIMITED CORPORATE CASH! So yeah all Chicago Machine to rig the election!

  6. 6
    Ben Cisco says:

    I submit that the tag should at this point be modified to read

    Black Ronald Reagan

    That is all.

  7. 7
    Schlemizel says:

    sadly, its impossible to tell these days if #4 & 5 are serious or attempting humor.

  8. 8
    Face says:

    The uptick in GDP was caused by the surge in Old Country Buffet profits as Christopher Christie toured around the East coast.

  9. 9
    handsmile says:

    More evidence that the “stewardship of the economy” improves under Democratic leadership, this article published yesterday in the NYT: “California Finds Economic Gloom Starting to Lift”:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11.....gence.html

    (Several commenters posted this link on threads yesterday and I’m sorry that I do not recall their nyms now.)

  10. 10
    Cassidy says:

    1) The economy is improving. It’s okay to say that. It’s still not great, but it’s better than it was a year ago.

    2) Hillary Clinton is not running in 2016.

  11. 11
  12. 12
    Dan says:

    Haven’t you heard, Obama’s only improving the economy so he can get his third term!

    http://www.motherjones.com/pol.....third-term

  13. 13
    Napoleon says:

    @Cassidy:

    2) Hillary Clinton is not running in 2016.

    God I hope you are right about that. She maybe a good SOS but all the reasons to keep her and her advisors like Mark Penn a million miles away from the WH are still there.

  14. 14
    grape_crush says:

    GDP and unemployment numbers looking better is nice, sure, but it’s really an inadequate measure of how well we’re actually doing.

    Something like a Gross National Happiness (GNH) index might be more useful.

  15. 15
    Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    The economy actually sucks.

    @Just Some Fuckhead: 2.7% growth is actually right in the sweet spot. The problem is not that the economy sucks, it’s that employment sucks. The few who are hiring – and there’s not many of those – are hiring for jobs that pay between 8-10 bucks an hour. You know, starvation wages.

    This is systemic, it’s been going on since the Clinton years and I have no idea how to stop it – but it desperately needs to be stopped. I don’t know how you can mandate employers to hire people, and I don’t know how you can force them to pay their employees more money.

  16. 16
    Joel says:

    @grape_crush: I wonder what the ethnic cleansing of the Nepali did for the Bhutanese GNH in the late 80’s.

  17. 17
    Cassidy says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease: What’s worse than the shitty pay is that employers are only hiring part time, so you odn’t even get a full 40 hour week at $10/hr. That’s a livable wage if you have no bligations, but the hours are fucking criminal.

    @Napoleon: I think she’d make a good POTUS and even has a strong platform to run on with the addition of her latest assignment. I hope she’s not not running due to the potential RW freakout of CLINTON VAGINA!, but that could be it. I get the impression that she’s happy to back off and get away from the grind of the last few years. If I were her, I’d take some time to spend with her lovely daughter and nag her about becoming a grandparent.

  18. 18
    Linda Featheringill says:

    Yes, we’re not overly prosperous right now. But we’re a lot better off than Europe.

  19. 19
    grape_crush says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease:

    I don’t know how you can force them to pay their employees more money.

    Yeah, too bad there isn’t some way workers could form some type of organization that could put pressure on employers to pay reasonable, living wages.

    Oh, wait…

  20. 20
    Zifnab25 says:

    @Ben Cisco:

    Black Ronald Reagan

    I second this, just because it would piss Republicans off to no end.

  21. 21
    jibeaux says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease: You can’t, but tax-advantaged hiring incentives such as one might find in the American Jobs Act wouldn’t hurt.

  22. 22
    Alex S. says:

    @gf120581:

    Yes, unless there is some european meltdown, the economic tailwinds should give every democratic candidate a little boost. The Republicans lose the economic argument.
    It’s funny how Obama’s election numbers turned out to be far better than expected, and also that the economy turned out to be much better than expected, with the upward revisions of job and GDP numbers.

  23. 23
    Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    Haven’t you heard, Obama’s only improving the economy so he can get his third term!

    @Dan: Gobsmacked. So, the economy goes full turbo under Obama, the US becomes number one and then some, we’re all living in Awesometown with champagne baths every night, and because of this economic miracle popular demand forces Obama to seek a third term and somehow this whole scenario is “terrifying”?

    Aside from the fact that this is, well, insane beyond my ability to reason through, just look at Obama these days. The presidency ages people well beyond just the years involved. I don’t think he’s been enjoying this, and even if he was I’m pretty sure Michelle wouldn’t stand for him running for a third term.

  24. 24
    Zifnab25 says:

    @Cassidy: Meh. We have such a deep bench, I really don’t see the need for a Clinton dynasty. Hillary made a great Sec State and was strong in the Senate. But I think its time to usher Gillibrand or Brown or Warren onto center stage.

  25. 25
    rlrr says:

    @Dan:

    The same sort of people said exactly the same thing about Clinton in late November, 1996.

  26. 26
    gbear says:

    If I look at my November credit card totals, the economy has grown by 600% this month. I am personally keeping some local pottery makers. a couple of local record stores, Petco and the Bloomington MN Ikea store afloat.

    I’m afraid I see a horrible crash in those numbers for the first quarter of 2013 due to a move towards austerity.

  27. 27
    grape_crush says:

    @Joel:

    I wonder what the ethnic cleansing of the Nepali did…

    I wonder what that has to do with the idea behind measuring a population’s well-being in some other way than ‘is our economy growing?’

  28. 28
    Cassidy says:

    @grape_crush: Depends on which state your in.

    @Zifnab25: I agree. I was just saying that I don’t feel strongly one way or another over a HIllary Presidency. I think she’d be good at it and I think we would prosper under her. I also hope she’s not running for her own reasons and not because of what the likes of Glenn Beck and Limbaugh think of CLINTON VAGINA! Overall, I’d like to see her take a step back. She’s served her country well and has earned a happy retirement.

  29. 29
    PeakVT says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease: 2.7% isn’t so hot. 3.5% (real) is what we want.

  30. 30
    Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    Yeah, too bad there isn’t some way workers could form some type of organization that could put pressure on employers to pay reasonable, living wages.

    @grape_crush: Agreed. I’m a former Teamster. My wife’s the shop rep where she works. I’m as pro-union as it gets. But there’s some awful truths that need to be acknowledged.

    Unions can only help people that want to be helped, people who want to organize. The American worker is stupid, has bought the propaganda of the one percenters hook, line, and sinker, and has overwhelmingly rejected the only people who can help him. Rejected them consistently, time and time again. Between worker stupidity and union failure to defend the reasons for their existence, we now find ourselves here, with nothing but crap jobs on offer and few of those at that.

    I gotta blame labor for this situation, not politicians, not the courts, and not business. Labor in the twenties and thirties had to deal with actually getting murdered to win their rights, and a judicial system that expressly forbade their existence. Things aren’t like that anymore. We face soft-handed judges at the very worst, but instead of fighting, we cower like beaten dogs, when not actively fighting against our own best interests. Labor can do better and must do better, but refuses. The American worker has dug this hole for themselves, and they’re really the only ones who can dig themselves out of it.

  31. 31
    gbear says:

    just look at Obama these days. The presidency ages people well beyond just the years involved. I don’t think he’s been enjoying this, and even if he was I’m pretty sure Michelle wouldn’t stand for him running for a third term.

    I’ll just hope, like I’ve been hoping since he won the first election, that he survives his second term. I was nervous as hell during his first acceptance speech that the night was going to end horribly. There’s still far too much wingnut chatter about how he shouldn’t be allowed to be president.

  32. 32
    NonyNony says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease:

    I do – higher tax rates on capital gains and higher tax rates on top income brackets.

    If there’s less incentive to take money out of the company in executive compensation, then there’s incentive to keep that money in the company. And you keep that money in the company by hiring more people and investing more in the infrastructure of the company in general.

    It’s not a perfect solution – automation means that we’re constantly seeing fewer people needed to do the same amount of work. But the amount of “taking” that has been going on from the top levels of corporate American has gotten worse and worse as the top tax rates have been slashed.

    What happened to Hostess is a prime example of this – the top executives had every incentive to legally gut the company and no incentive to keep that money in the company and invest it in new product development, new infrastructure, employee training, etc. All of the incentives these days are lined up so that it is more profitable to Bain a company to death than it is to invest in its future. Nothing is going to change with that until the incentives in the tax code get reversed so that Baining a company isn’t so lucrative.

  33. 33
    Chris says:

    @Ben Cisco:

    You beat me to it.

    Bush was their Carter. Obama gets to be our Reagan. (And yes, I’m aware of the comparison’s unfairness to both Carter and Obama).

  34. 34
    Zifnab25 says:

    @Cassidy: Fair enough. I don’t doubt she’d be a good President, even if I think she’s a little to DLC-friendly.

  35. 35
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    @p.a.: But my sister said we should abolish the Fed because Ron Paul said so. We only have it because of that liberal elite academic Woodrow Wilson.

  36. 36
    Violet says:

    @gf120581: Hillary Clinton on the Supreme Court would probably make their heads spin even more.

  37. 37
    jayackroyd says:

    @Alex S.: Obama’s results were right in line with 538, PEC et al.

  38. 38
    jayackroyd says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease: Well there is Taft-Hartley. Without a government committed to standing up to powerful private interests, the free market is doomed. You end up where we are, with monopolists providing crappy products and services that are overpriced, and those same monopsonists driving down wages.

    IOW, oligarchy.

  39. 39
    japa21 says:

    @jayackroyd: In terms of EC numbers yes, but the popular vote spread is wider than originally thought or predicted.

  40. 40
    NonyNony says:

    @Chris:

    Bush was their Carter. Obama gets to be our Reagan. (And yes, I’m aware of the comparison’s unfairness to both Carter and Obama).

    Naw. I mean, the idea of making wingnuts heads explode is hilarious and I endorse it, but don’t take it far enough to believe it for yourself.

    Reagan was the conservative FDR in style, if not in substance. Built a new coalition, pushed his party in a new direction, won multiple terms, the guy that party members look back to with admiration and the other party’s members look back on with disgust. The guy that has a mythology around him that makes him seem much more liberal/conservative than he actually was in practice.

    I’d argue that Bush The Lesser is more like the conservative LBJ, really. Both started/expanded wars that started as moderately popular but ended up disastrously. Both spent a lot of political capital on ideological legislation important to their parties and themselves (LBJ’s actions on Civil Rights and poverty, Bush’s actions on tax cuts for the rich and attempt to privatize Social Security). Both left office with the American people saying “good riddance” overall. Both ended terms in office with their party falling into contentious internal bickering and the other party seeing a rise in popularity as people decided to give it another look.

    So this would actually suggest that Obama gets to be Nixon in this scenario. Which actually somewhat fits – not in attitude to temperament, but in that he’s dealing with a Congress that is controlled by the other party and he has to cut deals to get “what’s important to him” past the Congress (“what’s important” diverges greatly – for Nixon, important was foreign policy and he cut deals all over the place on the domestic side to enact his foreign policy agenda. For Obama, domestic policy is much more important that it was for Nixon, and he’s working with a Congress that refuses to deal in good faith. Also Nixon was a crook with real scandals to his name while this Congress can’t even find a fake scandal to gin up on Obama that will stick. So the parallels can only go so far.)

    (I could even make a case for Bush being a conservative mixture of JFK and LBJ if you like, with parallels between Truman and Bush the Elder and Clinton and Eisenhower, but I think that again pushes the analogies too far).

  41. 41
    weaselone says:

    @jayackroyd:
    I don’t believe that is what Alex meant. When we first enterred the election season, it was expected to be a tough slog for the Presidency with the Senate likely to go Republican. The actual outcome was a fairly convincing win for President Obama and some unexpected pickups in the Senate.

  42. 42
    Chris says:

    @NonyNony:

    Wow, good points all around.

    A nitpick (which actually fits into your “Obama is Nixon”) –

    Reagan was the conservative FDR in style, if not in substance. Built a new coalition

    Reagan didn’t build the new coalition. Nixon did, by using racial and cultural fears to draw a ton of Southerners and union voters (the Democrats’ previous base) into the Republican Party. All Reagan did was tack Goldwater’s ideology (which Nixon didn’t share) onto that coalition.

    In that case, Obama would indeed be our Nixon in the sense of being the one who ushered in a new Democratic coalition (women, young voters and nonwhite voters). Carter and Clinton both embodied a Democratic Party that was trying to win back as much of its old white, blue-collar (and Southern) base as possible. With Obama, Democrats actually seem to feel safe for the first time saying “damn the people Nixon/Reagan appealed to, we don’t need them anymore, we’ve got a new coalition.”

  43. 43
    Alex S. says:

    @jayackroyd:

    Nate had Obama up nationally by 2.5%, but it’s going to be more than 3.5%. Wang had Florida going to Romney if I recall correctly. Nate also had the Senate races worse than they actually were. Almost all of the polls (and the narrative) had it closer than it actually was. The difference isn’t THAT much, but the revisions are nothing world-shattering either. It’s just that the economic situation was just a little better than previously known, and Obama did a little better than expected. Nate’s model included economic variables as well, so maybe if he had known the revised job/GDP numbers, the model would have moved.

  44. 44
    liberal says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead:
    My thought exactly.

    Given this is the worst recession since the GD, 2.7% annual GDP growth sucks, and the rate of progress being made in the job market is pathetic.

    Now, is that necessarily an indictment of Obama? No. He has the Republicans to deal with. He has both Villagers and a large set of economists who have forgotten the lessons of Keynes and the GD. Recoveries from financial crashes seem to take a lot longer to recover from. There are secular trends superimposed on the housing bubble disaster that are difficult to contend with (mainly enormous growth in world labor to compete w/ America).

    That all being said, it has to be repeated: this recovery sucks. (And I say that as someone w/ a secure, well-paying job, married to same.)

  45. 45
    Maude says:

    @Napoleon:
    She has to raise $75,000 to pay off the 2008 campaign debt. They are doing the spend time with Bill thing again. it didn’t work last time, but hey.
    She won’t be able to raise the money to run again. She didn’t quit when she was sure to lose the Primary raise and she didn’t concede in a timely manner.
    Hillary Clinton appears to be a good SoS because the WH corrects her misstatements right away and quietly. She doesn’t have the full duties of a regular SoS.

  46. 46
    Alex S. says:

    @weaselone:

    Maybe ‘far’ better was a bit much, but yes, some pollsters were wondering how Obama’s job approval ratings were able to stay relatively high while the economy was disappointing. But it turned out that the economy was better and so there was nothing ‘magical’ happening.

  47. 47
    liberal says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease:

    The American worker has dug this hole for themselves, and they’re really the only ones who can dig themselves out of it.

    Perhaps, but the fact is that workers face a much, much more difficult collective action problem than the rich do.

  48. 48
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    @Chris: yeah, I mean, I don’t think you two are saying all that different things. Nixon fit the screws, and Reagan tightened them for good measure. Because even with the spectre of Nixon haunting us throughout the 70s, Carter still did very well in the South. Reagan put the stranglehold on.

  49. 49
    Yutsano says:

    OT: Nancy SMASH is officially minority leader again.

  50. 50
    rikyrah says:

    I wonder where the economic numbers would be without the House GOP blocking all the big league economic boosters, ya know?

    call it what it is…

    where would economic numbers be if the GOP hadn’t of decided to commit

    ECONOMIC TREASON

    against this country.

  51. 51
    Rafer Janders says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease:

    aside from the fact that this is, well, insane beyond my ability to reason through, just look at Obama these days. The presidency ages people well beyond just the years involved.

    People often say this, but…it really doesn’t. Obama looks older because he is older. Most people became aware of him in 2007, when he was 46. He’s now 52. Most every man starts to look a lot older when he reaches his 50s; their hair goes gray, their shoulders stoop, etc. It’s got nothing to do with the presidency, it’s just natural human aging.

    And aside from that, there’s a lot of research that indicates that the higher you are in a hierarchy, the healthier you are and the less stress you experience than those under you. Those who take orders age faster than those who give orders.

  52. 52
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    @Yutsano: Can we keep her? Can we give her some anti-aging thing like Doc Brown got in the Back to the Future series, and keep her for another 30 years?

  53. 53
    Yutsano says:

    @Full Metal Wingnut: She’s a nonna. They usually stay spry and ornery well into their nineties. We’ll have her for a few more years yet I expect.

  54. 54
    PeakVT says:

    @Yutsano: I hope that gives legacy journalist impersonators everywhere a long-lasting sad.

  55. 55
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    Also, I’ve never understood what the fuck was so embarrassing about Carter. Was he the best or most effective president? No. But his party was in shambles and he inherited a mess. He was ahead of his time on energy issues and the Middle East-although it seems like those things have been overshadowed by the gas crisis and the Iran hostage affair.

    Also, where the fuck is the shame in being a one-term president? Has anyone studied American history? John Adams was a one-term president. Lincoln, although re-elected, only served about a month of his second term. LBJ served about a year longer than a single term. Taft was a one-term president.

    You can get a lot done in 4 years. Is it some sort of mystical “shame” that proceeds from not being re-elected? I mean some one termers were awful and of those who sought re-election and failed, that properly reflected their shittiness. But I dunno. It was pretty common in the 19th century (and I guess a lot of those guys sucked. But still).

  56. 56
    ruemara says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease: As a member of an Association of workers, I second this comment. Every time I try to get them to do anything to improve their visibility and negotiating strength, the members wimp out. They would not even consider wearing t-shirts supporting their association as they worked for free at a local event they helped fund. Pathetic and servile.

  57. 57
    MaxxLange says:

    The President alone doesn’t really seem to have that much power to influence the economy. He can do certain things by executive order, like changes in federal hiring, or maybe in deciding where some spending goes. Can he fire the Federal Reserve chair? Appoint a new one? Not sure. His biggest play seems to be convincing/persuading/forcing Congress to do….something.

    But the performance of the economy seems to be the #1 metric by which we judge Presidents. It’s strange. Some of it is just luck. Clinton, for example, got an expanding economy and the big tech boom. I think he handled that prosperity well, actually lowering deficits and all that, but it’s not as if he caused it to happen all by himself.

  58. 58
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    To be obnoxious:

    Presidents who served two full terms:
    Washington
    Jefferson
    Madison
    Monroe
    Jackson
    Grant
    Cleveland
    Teddy just barely misses it-served most but not all of McKinley’s second term
    Wilson is debatable, probably not given his stroke
    Roosevelt-more than two, still counts
    Eisenhower
    Reagan
    Clinton
    Bush

    Clearly, all of the listed ones are outstanding, and the ones not included were a disgrace.

    Edit: actually, I have little quibble with most of them, except Reagan, Bush and Jackson. Rest are pretty much fine in my book. But you miss a lot when you look at it like this.

  59. 59
    NonyNony says:

    @Chris:

    Reagan didn’t build the new coalition. Nixon did

    Yeah, this is true – Nixon laid the groundwork, Reagan solidified it. Like I said – not a perfect analogy. And honestly in the “popular imagination” of the country it’s the “Reagan coalition” not the “Nixon coalition”. And it was Reagan who got the “Reagan Democrats” to cross over once and for all.

    @Full Metal Wingnut:

    Also, I’ve never understood what the fuck was so embarrassing about Carter. Was he the best or most effective president? No. But his party was in shambles and he inherited a mess.

    Honestly Carter should never have been President. The Democratic Party wasn’t ready for a Democratic President so soon after 1968, and I honestly think that the only reason a Democrat won that year at all was because of the scandalous end of the Nixon presidency. Without Watergate, Nixon ends his second term not in any more disgrace than any other president, Ford probably gets elected in ’76 and the Democrats spend more time in the political wilderness getting their shit together and we don’t end up with Carter having a single term where his reelection chances are crushed by the fact that the Democratic coalition wasn’t stable enough to really field a presidential candidate yet.

    I think Carter gets a lot of flack that he wouldn’t get otherwise because he was the “head” of a party that didn’t have its shit together to actually be united enough to have a “head”.

  60. 60
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    @MaxxLange: @MaxxLange: Been a while since I had Con Law but here goes. The President can fire the Fed chairman, I think, but it’s harder than for say a Cabinet member, who serve at the President’s pleasure and can be fired for any reason or no reason, pretty much.

    I’m pretty sure the Fed is an Article I quasi-legislative body or at least not a “purely executive officer” in the case of Bernanke, so Congress can (and has) limited the President’s power to remove him (I mean, not Bernanke personally, just anyone in his position). Something like that. I apologize if I mangled that, really not my area. But bottom line is, in cases I have long forgotten, SCOTUS has upheld the President’s power to remove, say, Cabinet officials w/o “advice and consent” of the Senate as incident to the appointment power, but not officials in independent regulatory agencies (FTC, etc etc). I know nothing about the Fed so I don’t know if it’s considered an independent regulatory agency like the FTC and therefore whether the tiny bit of caselaw I remember would apply.

  61. 61
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    @NonyNony: Holy shit, that would mean, if Nixon served out his second full term, and then Ford got elected, maybe…Reagan for sure would’ve been too old to run for a first term in 84. Nobody liked him as late as 76 and against a Republican incumbent in 80…

  62. 62
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    Actually, would Ford even have entered the picture if Watergate never blew up? I thought the only reason Agnew resigned was because Nixon leaked dirt on him to take some heat off himself for a while.

  63. 63
    NonyNony says:

    @Full Metal Wingnut: I know that that is something people say, but was it really confirmed? I thought the more likely explanation was that Agnew was openly corrupt and it finally caught up to him at the worst possible moment for Nixon since he was already fighting a scandal narrative when it happened.

  64. 64
    MaxxLange says:

    @Full Metal Wingnut: Agnew got caught in a bribery scandal, that I think took place when he was Governor of Maryland. I’ve never heard it said that Nixon leaked that information, but I’m sure he would have if he thought it was to his advantage.

  65. 65
    MaxxLange says:

    I heard the people managing the Nixon funeral REALLY didn’t want Agnew there, but he gave them the finger and showed up front and center.

  66. 66
    Alex S. says:

    @Full Metal Wingnut:

    Reagan also ran in 1976 and lost to Ford. So he might have won anyway, but 4 years sooner.

  67. 67
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    @NonyNony: That’s what my fourth grade teacher told me. SO YOU’RE WRONG NANANANANA

  68. 68
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    @MaxxLange: I had heard that he didn’t want to be there at all because he hated Nixon (imagine that!) and had to be persuaded by Nixon’s daughter or something to attend. Fuck if I know. Goddamn elementary school teachers.

  69. 69
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    @Alex S.: I though back in the 70s though, no sane Republican (which existed in multitudes! Imagine!) actually liked Reagan. I don’t think they warmed to him until after 76. But I am not sure.

  70. 70
    MaxxLange says:

    @Alex S.: I remember people thought his ’76 candidacy was a joke. I learned a lesson from that.

  71. 71
    Original Lee says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease: Also, there’s the whole right-to-work issue. Union shops that are open have more difficulty maintaining reasonable levels of membership if management can avoid behaving like jack-booted thugs most of the time. “Oh, I can’t afford union dues,” is what we hear a lot. Well, in that case, you can’t afford what our health insurance premiums would be without the union, or the wonderful new unpaid sick leave policy we would have without the union …

  72. 72
    Mino says:

    Wonder where the economy would be without 2-3 billion dollars leaving the coffers of the McScrooges and being spent on the election.

  73. 73
    Lurking Canadian says:

    Mitt Romney is truly incredible. He said that, if he were elected, the economy would improve without him doing anything. Well here’s the economy improving, and not only has Romney done nothing, he wasn’t even elected! He must be some kind of wizard!

  74. 74
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    @Lurking Canadian: Ah, but Obama invited Romney to the White House for a private lunch. Just imagine if he were President!

  75. 75
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    And aside from that, there’s a lot of research that indicates that the higher you are in a hierarchy, the healthier you are and the less stress you experience than those under you. Those who take orders age faster than those who give orders.

    They also appear to generally live longer-than-normal lifespans:

    Bush I: 88, still kicking
    Reagan: 93
    Carter: 88, still going.
    Ford: 93
    Nixon: 81
    Eisenhower: 79
    Truman: 88

  76. 76
    Full Metal Wingnut says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead: I have to say, I was never a fan of either Bush, but even still, all those old WWII pilots are/were completely badass.

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