Reader video

As we await the excitement of the House vote on the Boehner plan, let’s entertain ourselves with a new reader video, from the band Super Duper.

Update. The reader is a member of the band, that’s how these things work.

Another reader video

I’m going to do these on a regular schedule, once a week, I think, but it’s a bummer weekend and I thought another one would be fun. From reader Paul Belliveau, who’s a high-school math teacher by day.

By request

A Balloon-Juice reader asked me to play this music video that his wife made. I thought that could be a new fun thing around here, videos made by readers and their friends and families.

Also too, this is a week, politically, so I’m for more light-hearted threads.

Jobs Report

One of our trolls yesterday was spamming every thread claiming I was ignoring the excellent news of the jobs report (because I hate Obama or I am a libertarian or something- like most trolls, his gibberish is indecipherable). So here you go, rejoice with the good news:

U.S. employers added 18,000 workers in June, the fewest in nine months, and the unemployment rate unexpectedly climbed, indicating a struggling labor market.

The increase in payrolls followed a 25,000 gain that was less than half the rise initially estimated, Labor Department data showed today in Washington. The median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey called for a June gain of 105,000. The unemployment rate rose to 9.2 percent, the highest level this year. Hiring by companies, which excludes government agencies, was the weakest since May 2010.

Stocks plunged and Treasuries rose as the absence of stronger job growth caused earnings to stagnate, posing a threat to consumer spending that accounts for 70 percent of the economy. The second-quarter slowdown in hiring underscores a recovery that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said is “frustratingly slow.”

It could be that I am sober and not an insane crazy person, but I’m not seeing why we should be breaking out the champagne.


The emo crowd is out in full force today, and apparently I am some sort of sociopath for ignoring random bullshit from anonymous sources “close” to the WH unsourced in the Washington Post. I remember when liberals and progressives ignored this sort of shit, calling it out for the nonsense that it is.

Listen, in case there is any confusion, I think any attempts to tinker with social security by Democrats would be ridiculous, stupid, and politically disastrous. When the Republicans refuse to budge on tax cuts for millionaires or any other revenue, it would be the height of stupidity for any Democrats to vote for reductions in social security. Period. And if Team Obama does something like that, they are being clowns. Social Security is fine.

But I refuse to get my panties in a bunch by a piece of thinly sourced crap in Fred Hiatt’s fishwrap. I’m not angry or attempting to police discourse, I’m not fluffing Obama, I’m not convinced it is some sort of 11 Dimensional Chess, and I’m not engaging in some morally bankrupt posturing to defend Obama. If they screw with Social Security, even minutely, it would be politically idiotic. Any messing with SS makes it easier for folks to do something worse at a later date, and it will be a Democratic administration that gets the blame for it because they opened the door. Not to mention, SOCIAL SECURITY IS NOT A PROBLEM.

Having said all that, I still recognize this for what it is:

“Obviously, there will be some Democrats who don’t believe we need to do entitlement reform. But there seems to be some hunger to do something of some significance,” said a Democratic official familiar with the administration’s thinking. “These moments come along at most once a decade. And it would be a real mistake if we let it pass us by.”

For all we know, that Democratic official could be Harold Ford or some other asshole. I’m just not going to freak out over what unnamed folks say.