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Discussion: (112 comments)

  1. Walk-off Grand Slam, James!

    1. There’s that fairness doctrine again. “2% are stealing from the rest” Stuff your egg headed education up the expert’s butt. Oh wait, its already there. Keyensian economics is a farcical excuse to interfere in free will of the market and its traffickers.

      1. It is interesting to see all the name calling….

        My dad told me a long time ago… You can tell when you are winning an argument with someone not as intelligent as you… They will start calling you names…..

  2. Bruce Clark

    Absolutely spot on. I’ve been in the markets for 28 years and have never seen such insanity. Between this issue and the middle east I’d better be seeing Mitt’s mug on the TV 24/7 pressing his case. A gift indeed!

    1. Yeah, I haven’t seen such insanity in the markets either, and I was reading my mother’s Value Line issues back in 1966.

      You see insanity, huh? I do too.

      You only have $500 trillion of debt and structured notes linked to a phony made up index called LIBOR. But never mind. Its that socialism that’s killing us.

      You have 80% of the stock trade volume being performed by only 2% of the players.

      Those players are using algorithmic systems that simply hunt down equities not based on any intrinsic value, but probability of movement in one direction or another. The systems deployed to do this don’t even “know” the names of the companies the equities are attached to.

      Hundreds of phony bids that are never matched get offered and pulled to facilitate this trading. Every minute of the day.

      Billions of dollars of “dark pool” funds trade every day, unchecked and unmonitored by anyone. A shadow market running along side the algo driven one.

      Yeah, I’ve never seen so much madness either.

      Move along citizens. Nothing is happening here

      1. You’re the very epitome of an internet tough guy. Why don’t you go get raped at an Occupy rally and stop bothering everyone else?

        1. Too bad a brave men had to already suffer this at the hands of Islamic nut cases. Ignore him. He’s a troll with a severe case of little man’s syndrome.

        2. Speak for yourself please…

      2. Now I see who you are. A little education is a dangerous thing.

        1. “A little education is a dangerous thing.”

          And less education is even more dangerous….

          On that somewhat related note, lets see…. who’s plan incorporates cutting education? Romney… of course…

      3. Yet all of the evils of the stock market that you point to STILL exist after 3 and a half years under this president! And every time this administration crows about the economic recovery, they point to the improvement in the stock market (i.e. banks & wall street). Aren’t these the same banks & wall street that were the bad guys? Yet this this administration’s (and the Fed’s) policies have allowed these “evil” beings to amass enormous gains while creating pathetically few jobs for Americans. The explosion of rising stock prices caused by Q.E. and the expectation of Q.E.. Every time Bernanke prints more money, the value of wall street stocks go up and the value of every American’s dollars go down.

  3. What a pathetic screed. You just offered precisely the same policy prescriptions that did nothing for the economy before, and even if they did, the circumstances of this calamity are so different, its like giving the same medicine for another disease. And the private sector? Its stuffed to the gunwales with cash, cash, and more cash. Mr. Pethokoukis has apparently ignored the trillions of dollars of stock buy backs and dividend increases that have taken place in the past couple of years. There is no shortage of capital, except in the revenue starved public sector, and those who are still leveraged to 115% of their income, as the average American is.

    I’ll take ten Solyndras over one Iraq, thank you. And we need to raise taxes. To pay for the costs of Iraq. That’s what you do when you run up a tab- you pay it.

    As far as the economy being technically in out of recession, as per the metrics economists use, yes, we’re all painfully aware that things are not moving as quickly as we would want or hope.

    But there isn’t a damned thing that could have been done that would have changed that. It took decades to get here, and we will indeed be fortunate if we normalize by 2020.

    And anyone who didn’t see this in 2008 is only kidding themselves, or lacks the economic credentials to speak on the matter. And that is the REAL problem on this site.


    1. What an idiotic rant. The thrust of your blathering is that capital in the hands of the public sector is more wisely and productively used than capital in the hands of the private sector.

      Please spare us any further posts. Your ignorance is evident on its face.

      1. I never said that “capital in the hands of the public sector is more wisely and productively used than capital in the hands of the private sector,” but the response is quite telling in the breadth of the myopia you just displayed.

        Don’t call me “ignorant,” sonny. I’ll wipe the floor with you. Every d*ck whose gotten through the first chapter of “Road to Serfdom” now considers himself an expert.

        Like “Mein Kampf” for the wingnuts.

        1. stick to physics max. nice use the the D word sonny.

        2. Greg Benton

          Raise taxes on whom? The ‘rich’? Or everyone?

          Do preach on about all the recessions and depressions that have been turned into economic recovery and boom times through tax hikes.

          You conveniently gloss over the economic booms that followed JFK and Reagan and Clinton/GOP reforms that cut taxes over all… and if you object to debt being accumulated then explain how Obama’s racking up more than any previous president in history is somehow proof he deserves re-election.

          You manage to spin a nice yarn, but the fact is Bernanke would not have done what he did if your puffery about the economy being better than in 2008 were true.

          And yes, your comment on raising taxes does implicitly state that capital is better in the hands of the State.

          Props on the fancy spin job. You sure got your Krugman down.

          1. “You conveniently gloss over the economic booms that followed JFK and Reagan and Clinton/GOP reforms that cut taxes over all..”

            There is an old expression in economics: “Correlation is not necessarily causation,” and that ESPECIALLY holds true for the Reagan (cough) “cuts.”

            If any of you economic geniuses want to hold that what was, at bottom, tweaking marginal rates was a more powerfuk stiumulant than dropping overnight lending rates by 1300 basis points, and having mortgage rates plummet by 10%, you go right ahead. Pull out that “Kool Aid” epithet. For yourselves.

        3. Dude, chill. The economy is slow because investors don’t want to take risks. The environmental, tax, regulatory, energy, … policies plus this president’s tendency to ignore statutory law, ongoing push to force banks to make loans to people who can’t repay them and the fear of him using the government for reprisals (I know, long sentence) strongly discourage putting money out there to make things happen. The auto industry could have gone forward with a simple planned bankrupcy & come back with new ownership. Instead of just the owners loosing their money, however, the bond holders were stripped by this administration of their rights (which was illegal – but who’s going to impeach and convict this president?) which then handed the unions ownership. I could go on, but you, if your somewhat honest and just slightly open to the real world, get the picture. Who in the world would be stupid enough to take a risk while this current bunch is running the government? It’s risky enough under normal conditions.

      2. Speak for yourself…. He is one of the few on here that presents logic behind his posts, and makes any sense….

        You sir (or madam) certainly don’t speak for me… please don’t try..

    2. EconomistLynn

      The most pathetic screed is your ludicrous comment. It’s time you take your obama blinders off and see the mess obama has made. He took a poor economy and made it so much worse. Anyone who passed Econ 101 know that.

      1. Anytime someone has used the term “Econ 101″ you can bet that is about as far as their economic knowledge goes. Keep self-indoctrinating yourself by reading this twaddle.

        No sir, the economy is NOT worse than it was when Obama took over, and to accuse me of having “blinders” on is nonsense.

        The facile construct used by Mr. Pethokoukis and others is that the right mix of “policy” will set everything right, and of course, we’re not deploying that mix now because the President and his cabinet are obviously so blinded by their ideology and socialist bent. The President just does’t know anything about business or economics like a man like Romney does.

        Of course, Paul Volcker, Gene Sperling, Austan Goolsbee and others are all amateurs too, right?

        Know this: the economic philosophy advocated by Mr. Pethokoukis, Hubbard, Mankiw and Laffer have led this country to ruin. And it’s not because I say so, its because the EVIDENCE does.

        This isn’t some stupid Pagan belief system to latch onto. This is a subject that involves cold, rational, objective thought. Think about that next time you think things are “worse.”

        1. Max Planck? Paul Krugman are you ghost writing again? Your old, worn, Post-modern Keynesian Economic clap-trap ideas belong in the NYTimes, not here.

          1. another brilliant response….

          2. It is truly amazing to me every time I see posts like Max’s that go through pains to lay out a logical argument, and see repeated name calling in return….

            It reminds me of a Gary Larson cartoon


            Max is the man, and the name calling responders are the dog….

            Max, it also relates to reaching pigs to sing :)

        2. Greg Benton

          In your list of genius economists you left out Krugman… don’t sell him short as an amateur… he’s a professional hack.

          1. How many Nobel Prizes do you have?

          2. …crickets…..

        3. The economy, by now, should be MUCH better than when Pres. Obama took office. BTW – I didn’t see anything in there where Pethokoukis says the right mix of policy will set everything right. Implied, but not explicit, is that government has prolonged the problem and needs to get out of the way. Also – why in the world would anyone call themselves Max Planck. Granted, he was a smart guy – but on small scales.

          1. “The economy, by now, should be MUCH better than when Pres. Obama took office.”

            Really? Why and how?

            “BTW – I didn’t see anything in there where Pethokoukis says the right mix of policy will set everything right.”

            Good- let him come up with ONE idea that will help.

            “Implied, but not explicit, is that government has prolonged the problem and needs to get out of the way.”

            That statement means nothing.

          2. Really…. The second largest economic collapse in history… And it should all be better because…. You said so? The depression took 15 years to come out of. In comparison, we are doing well.

            When looked at in light of the unprecedented obstruction…


            we are doing better than I would have thought. What we need is some Ex-lax in congress

        4. gary gulrud

          “Mr. Pethokoukis, Hubbard, Mankiw and Laffer ”

          Oh really, and what philosophy would that be exactly?

        5. All you did in your post was make some rhetorically pejorative comments about something you labeled someone’s “ideology”.

          I sure hope that isn’t all you accomplished today because, if so, I have to say that you’ve wasted this past 24 hours.

        6. I know a lot of physicists. Great at physics. Completely useless in real life.

          1. I know a lot of pundits. Great at… well.. nothing

      2. Name calling makes one sound so intelligent… I can see that you truly ARE an economist… NOT

    3. gary gulrud

      I take offense at a drooling imbecile using the handle of scientific genius.

      The only positive outcome of Bennie’s move is to goose the Market. As soon as the ECB starts buying Spanish bonds from banks and dealers a week or two after purchase, and paying them tens of bps for their trouble US treasuries will climb in price.

      Bennie no longer has an exit strategy for the $4 Trillion on his balance sheet at the end of 2014 when he retires from the Fed.

      The BDI would be at a record low were it not for shippers failing.

      Fed printing amounts to 10% of GDP whereas a dollar of Federal fiscal spending generates 42 cents of economic activity. While this is partially due to financing the debt, the greatest reason is malinvestment of limited resources.

      After four years there has been virtually no deleveraging, debt is still hanging over our heads as asset deflation continues.

      We can go on, but most would get the picture.

      1. Wow, love the name calling… It makes you sound so “grown up”….

        Unlike buying bonds, buying mortgages will stimulate banks to create mortgages because they have a place to sell them. That (along with low rates) will in turn create more push from banks on mortgages, and more lending. Take a look, the current issues aren’t low demand, it is difficulty getting a mortgage.

        I had to supply 3 years tax returns, and a slew of other material in a 3 month protracted exercise to refinance my house. I have a credit score of 833, and my mortgage is not close to being under water…. but I digress….

        This will in turn stimulate home buying, which will stimulate home and construction related companies.

        All one has to do is look at the market, and what is now going up, to see what will happen…

        And that is bad because??????

    4. Kent Crawford, Prof (ret)

      Max, In all your ranting, you are finally right about one point; there is not shortage of capital. Where you go off the rail is when it comes to the question, why aren’t business using their capital to expand their business and hire new employees?

      Since you know so little about business, I will answer it for you. Business must plan for the future, and look at the entire economic and government policy context in making its decisions and plans. They see ObamaCare with its 21 new taxes and mountain of regulations. They see EPA and the other malignant regulatory agencies adding thousands of new and costly rules. They see the administration’s energy policies threatening the nation’s supplies, now and for the future. They hear threats of huge tax increases to accompany the criminal levels of deficit spending, with no efforts to curb the bleeding. They see a dark and uncertain economic future with little chance of recovery under the current administration.

      This leads them to two conclusions: they will be penalized heavily via ObamaCare for hiring employees, and if their business is successful they will be penalized via the tax code.

      Now they know something you obviously don’t; businesses do not pay taxes. They merely collect taxes via the price of their goods and services. So taxes and penalties and regulatory costs just cause price hikes. But given the unemployment/under-employment rate of around 22.5% [not the government ‘lies’] what would be the effect of large price hikes be on sales? Simple economics; if the price goes up, demand — and sales — goes down.

      This is where your Keynesian theories hacks fail. Their computer models cannot take the “human element” into consideration. No amount of stimulus is going to matter if the economic and government policy environment stinks. And that is why Keynesian theories never work in reality.

      In simple terms, if you want the economy to recover, you must create an environment — government policy and regulatory — that is conducive to business growth. The current administration has done the exact opposite, and hence there is no recovery.

      1. This is an old post, but I want to answer it:

        “They see ObamaCare with its 21 new taxes and mountain of regulations. They see EPA and the other malignant regulatory agencies adding thousands of new and costly rules. They see the administration’s energy policies threatening the nation’s supplies, now and for the future. They hear threats of huge tax increases to accompany the criminal levels of deficit spending, with no efforts to curb the bleeding. ”

        Basically, this is a load of crap.

        You carp about “Obamacare?” As someone who is self employed, I can tell you my health insurance costs for my family of four have tripled in the past decade. It now costs $1200 a month to insure a family of four. The average American makes about 50k a year. Tell me how you make a going economy out of that, and where were your complaints about skyrocketing insurance costs all this time? Besides, there’s no “uncertainty” here- no matter what ACA brings, you’re gonna remit your payments to Humana, Blue Cross, Aetna, CIGNA or whomever, and that will be that. Its going to be THEIR job to set rates and coverage, not the business owner’s.

        99% of American businesses are completely unaffected by what the EPA does, and this has no bearing on employment, unless you’re in the business of polluting.

        The cost of Natural Gas has dropped by 60% since this President took office. Where are the “soaring energy prices” besides the ones caused by the trading manipulation on the ICE? There’s no supply issue- AT ALL.

        “Threats of soaring taxes?” 4.9% increase on 4% of the population is gonna kill the economy? Are you that blind to your own flawed rhetoric?

        It is amazing to me how this nation has trained itself to stop thinking. We get bogus economics that are as about well rooted in research as Hitler’s racial theories, and people merely repeat them.


      2. Mr. Crawford: “Since you know so little about business, I will answer it for you.”

        I’ve been a businessman since I was 18 years old. I’m pushing 60. Don’t ever tell me I know ‘so little about business’ because I ain’t no professor.

  4. kitty Humphrey

    You just offered the same plan that Romney offered months ago BUT he has more in his plan – have you read his?

  5. James, great stuff. Let’s hope Romney grows a pair and starts swinging at all the curve balls Chicago is spinning with the help, (help is too nice, better to say “heavy lifting”) of the MSM. I have never seen a press this in the tank for a candidate. It really is not fair to call them press any more.

    One comment I would make is to lay off of the “cut taxes” issue and go after the “Simplify taxes”. Taxes are so complicated now, that any cuts are not understood by the great masses, so it does not have the effect it should have in behavior. The key with tax reductions is to change behavior. That is why the Obama “tax cuts” have failed so miserably. No one knows which special interest group he is helping (i.e. one legged wheelchair bound small business owners who are hiring Indonesian refugees with Cuban heritage will not have pay FICA on their first year of hires, etc.). These kind of complex tax codes/cuts are ridiculous.

    1. how old are you? i recall them being this in the tank in 2008 and 2004 and 2000 and 1996 and 1992 and 1988 and 1984 and 1980 and 1976. thats about as far as i go.

      1. john werneken

        I go back a bit farther. Add 1972 1968 1964 1960 and 1956.


  6. Romney’s not a good enough candidate to make use of this opening. Wishful thinking Jim

  7. Patricia Wheatcraft

    please send thisn to Mitt

    1. No certainty in business? Really? That’s you’re argument? Really?

      Pres O doesn’t pick winners and losers? GE, GM – no taxes, record profits. Solyndra? GM bailout – tax payers screwed to payoff the UAW for getting him elected.

      5 trillion and counting in new debt… Up over 100% of GDP?

      This is environment is extremely uncertain.

      Not that repubs are any better but…

      You’re fact-less retorts show that you don’t pay attention to anything other than the dem talking points

  8. Stability is the key

    Max is correct that a lot of money is sitting on the sidelines. It’s staying three largely because this president has created nothing but uncertainty about debt ceilings, tax rates, health care costs etc. etc.
    He’s also shown he is prone to ignoring the law and picking and choosing winners and losers in bankruptcies, as he did with GM and Chrysler. Democratic interest groups get made whole while secured bond holders get the shaft. Would you invest?
    He wants to raise already high capital gains taxes, not because he thinks it will raise revenue, but because he believes it’s “fair.” The man is an economic idiot. He seems not to know the first thing about economics. Not even, “if you wantless of something, tax it, if you want more, subsidize it.” He subsidizes poverty while punishing investment. What a fool.

    1. “Max is correct that a lot of money is sitting on the sidelines. It’s staying three largely because this president has created nothing but uncertainty about debt ceilings, tax rates, health care costs etc. etc.”

      Rubbish. There’s no demand, so there’s no incentive to expand.

      The “uncertainty” meme is nonsense, the stuff of brain dead pundits. There is no such thing as “certainty” in business.

      “He’s also shown he is prone to ignoring the law and picking and choosing winners and losers in bankruptcies, as he did with GM and Chrysler. Democratic interest groups get made whole while secured bond holders get the shaft. Would you invest?”

      Another lame retort. The choice was to bankrupt hedge funds who gobbled up defaulted debt at pennies on the dollar, or lay waste to the pensions of hundreds of thousands of workers. This was a one shot transaction performed at a time of extreme crisis, and it applies to nothing else.

      Both examples show how hollow these arguments are.

      And capital gains taxes are exceptionally low. Anything else?

      1. Forgive Max for not understanding that this growth recession isn’t based on a lack of demand but on the entrepreneurs’ unwillingness to put their capital at risk.

        Max is acting like he knows what he’s talking about but he hasn’t shown that he’s anything more than a political hack who’s attempting to sound authoritative.

      2. What a moron: “there’s no certainty in business.” No sh*t, Sherlock. On the other hand, one of the largest cost drivers for businesses–health care costs and tax liabilities–ARE and unknown at present. As long as that is the case only a fools are going to commit to hiring full-time employees unless they are absolutely required.

        And those hedge funds who purchased GM debt? Even assuming your characterization was correct–a debatable prospect at best–there is still a small matter of bankruptcy law. Since when do we make the rules for even “a one shot transaction performed at a time of extreme crisis” without authorizing law? If Congress weren’t so worthless, they would have challenged Bush on the use of bailout funds for GM and would have sued Obama to keep him from screwing the bondholders by fiat.

      3. Stability iis key

        No, nothing else except to note that you seem as clueless as your dear leader on economics.
        Your responses were every bit as full of assumptions as mine. Of course demand is down. People are out of work. Why are they out of work? Business isn’t hiring. Why not? Because demand is down. That is your brain dead circular argument. By your reasoning there is no way out of the death spiral. But businesses have to show a profit. That means innovating, expanding etc. There is no such things as certainty but they can and should expect that their government will obey the law and not act capriciously. Under this president, it has been demonstrated that the law means nothing and that it will act in any way it wants, much like a banana republic.
        How easily you dismissed the lawful claims of Chryler and GM creditors under the law. You make my point for me. Had the president oallowed GM to enter bankruptcy, it would have emerged leaner and stronger, able to compete and attract private investment. Now, nobody but a fool would invest, knowing that Obama will simply invalidate their security to pay his cronies in the unions.
        Now the U.S. credit rating has been downgraded again in direct response to Obama policy. Spin away, he owns that.

        1. Another pathetic narrative!

          “The economy is slow because investors don’t want to take risks. The environmental, tax, regulatory, energy, … policies plus this president’s tendency to ignore statutory law, ongoing push to force banks to make loans to people who can’t repay them and the fear of him using the government for reprisals (I know, long sentence) strongly discourage putting money out there to make things happen. ”

          This is the most far fetched lunacy posted yet.

          “The auto industry could have gone forward with a simple planned bankrupcy & come back with new ownership.”

          It WAS a “planned bankruptcy” but who was going to fund and execute the deal? Bear Stearns? Lehman? The entire banking system of the United States of America had frozen solid, and NOTHING was being transacted, so the government had to do the job for them. How quickly we forget.

          Instead of just the owners loosing their money, however, the bond holders were stripped by this administration of their rights (which was illegal – but who’s going to impeach and convict this president?) which then handed the unions ownership. I could go on, but you, if your somewhat honest and just slightly open to the real world, get the picture. Who in the world would be stupid enough to take a risk while this current bunch is running the government? It’s risky enough under normal conditions.”

          1. Halmark card

            You don’t get it, do you? There is a bankruptcy that is “planned” in accordance with well established laws and procedures, then there is one “planned” by the whims of a ruler to favor his friends and contributers. Which one do you think creates instability and uncertinty? And rather than this being a one shot deal, we see Obama frequently and arbitrarily violating the rule of law without consequence. Whether these things are necessary and important, they are illegal and lawless acts which destabilze an already fragile economy.

            Do you even understand the concept of a secure bond holder? When companies need financing and can’t get it, or want it at a lower interest rate, they sign a contract with the bondholder that simply states that in the event of a bankruptcy, they assets of the company will go to pay them first. They are secure, that even if the company goes under, they will get at least some of their money back. Obama chose voluntarily to violate this legally binding contract. He did so without consequence, by government decree. He didn’t have to do this – he chose to do it to reward the union, who it can be argued, drove the company to bankruptcy in the first place.

            There were all sots of ways to mange the situation – Obama chose the way that was the most arbitrary, and most favorable to his friends.

            What bank or creditor would loan money to GM ever again?

      4. the uncertainty is the big killer for small business. I run four and all have been pretty much on hold, at least as far as aggressive expansion is concerned. I’m saving my money to pay more taxes next year


          When customers show up, no one gives a crap about “uncertainty.” What an empty retort.

      5. Mark Herron

        Because you call something lame doesn’t make it so. There’s no demand because Obama’s policies have led to continued high unemployment and underemployment so people can’t afford to but anything. Secondly anyone who has taken an elementary economics course knows that businesses make decisions based on risk. With Obama risk is sky high. You don’t know what ridiculous policy he is going to pursue. Businesses worry he will raise taxes and regulations. In that environment of uncertainty it makes no sense to risk expansion. To deny this is just silly. It is also silly to deny that Obama has picked winners and losers to bailout usually because he favored a democrat constituency. Are you denying he favored the union over GM bond holders. That is ridiculous. Solyndra is another example and a failed one. This president is awful and the economy continues to demonstrate that. Of course when you don’t even bother to meet with the economic council you created what do you expect? Too busy lowering his handicap I guess.

    2. Tom Czerniawski

      “This president has created nothing but uncertainty about debt ceilings?”


      You mean the uncertainty created when the Republicans decided to block raising the ceiling as part of their unilateral obstruction policy?

      1. Gee, someone else gets it. Yes, folks, the “uncertainty” you’re all complaining about is due to to Speaker Boehner’s little dysfunctional group of mad hatters, the same ones who sent a bill to repeal ACA 32 times, knowing full well the Senate would toss it in the shredder the moment it arrived at their doorstep.

        This is what you “fiscal conservatives” are paying Boehner to do.

      2. Mark Herron

        Get a clue. I guess you think it is okay to just keep piling on more debt. No wonder you support a joke like Obama. You keep saying an obstructionist republican congress but he had both houses for two years and one for the last two. He can’t get his own party on board. He can’t even get a vote on his budget in the senate. What leadership

    3. What “uncertainty” about debt ceilings? It’ll certainly go up. No one has the guts to say “enough is enough”.

      1. Ever hear of the “sequester?”

        Guess not….

  9. Great article JP.

  10. US Credit Rating Cut by Egan-Jones … Again
    Published: Friday, 14 Sep 2012 | 3:43 PM ET

    Ratings firm Egan-Jones cut its credit rating on the U.S. government to “AA-” from “AA,” citing its opinion that quantitative easing from the Federal Reserve would hurt the U.S. economy and the country’s credit quality. “We are not receiving QE3 positively,” Vice President and co-manager of the ratings’ desk Bill Hassiepen told MNI Thursday, while the fiscal situation is a “nightmare.”

    While the Fed is seeking to support economic growth through its quantitative easing, Hassiepen argued that the central bank’s “massive monetization” is instead causing “sluggish to stagnant economic growth.” In fact, he expects growth to become stagnant within six months as a result of the Fed’s policy.

    In other words, the latest reckless, irresponsible, treasonous action of bailout bernanke and his feckless Federal Reserve (an OBOZO-supporting Political Action Committee) will compound the damage already done to the US economy by OBOZO’s failed economic and regulatory polices.

    As Ronald Reagan, America’s Greatest Modern President, has said:
    “Government is not a solution to our problem, government is the problem.”

    1. Nobody listens to Egan-Jones, and the downgrade is a good way to get a little attention for themselves.

      More to the point would be Moody’s threat to downgrade, blaming Congress squarely for it’s obstructionism.

      1. kurt spitzer

        You obviously are a fool, keep drinking the Koolaid and write more often.
        Its so revealing to read how intelligent Obamaits are.

        1. Notice that other other “reputable” agencies didn’t cut ratings on this…. Notice also that all of them did, due to the last fiscal cliff, specifically stating obstruction in congress…


        2. As Rick Santorum noted today: The smart people will never be on the side of the Republican Party. So which side are you on, Kurt.

      2. It’s stands for it is.

  11. I wrote here about the thing that’s keeping the U.S. economy in the pits:

    It isn’t a matter just of tax policy or spending restraint. The other part of the puzzle that’s missing is regulatory restraint.

    There’s $2 trillion sitting on the sidelines. Liquidity isn’t the problem. Tax reform would make for better tax policy but that won’t get that money off the sidelines.

    Small businesses worry that complying with the ACA will be tricky because the regulations aren’t written yet. They don’t know what their labor costs will be, which is contributing to businesses’ apprehension to putting their capital at risk.

    This administration loves regulation to such an extent that they’re strangling business.

    The Romney plan includes regulatory overhaul. The Obama plan calls for more of the same. That’s the real difference between the candidates.

    Mitt wants to lighten the regulatory burden on small businesses. This administration wants to increase the regulatory burden on small businesses.

    1. Gary, I own a business. Do you?

      Your assertions are hogwash, and just you projecting what you hope that I think… Obama has lowered my taxes, and proposed to do it again, he has proposed several jobs bills that would also help my business (as opposed to repealing the healthcare act under the name of jobs) and has lowered my employees healthcare costs, which helps my business, because I had to make up the difference…

      I can assure you I don’t spend one minute in mt day worrying about ACA regulations, much less let them dictate my business decisions LOL!!

    2. Joe Matarots

      Speaking with such logic is simply lost on Obama supporters I believe. My cousin owns 4 restaurants in Southern California and he said that Obama’s policies are cutting into his bottom line and he will not open any more restauarants until Obama is gone or the Republicans seize control of congress and real action is taken on our economic problems.
      I believe he speaks for millions of entrpreneurs that simply won’t do anything unless Obama is gone so we are either in this mess or worse for 4 more years if he is re-elected and may never come out of it or we start digging our way out in 2013 when Obama is shown the door and returns to his homeland ….. whichever state or country that is.

  12. Openings? 48 straight weeks with unemployment over 8%, underemployment over 16%, median incomes have dropped, crony capitalism runs amuck, the DoJ protects allies, punishes enemies and ignores the Constitution, Obama alienates our allies and sucks up to our enemies…it goes on and on. How much more do the American people have to witness? Obama is a failure.

    1. Geoff Slade

      Unfortunately, it is precisely the fact that Obama and his policies have been such a colossal failure that may gain him another four years. The masses of intellectually vapid lemmings who were so easily duped by this snake oil salesman four years ago, having now faced with their own stupidity, will not be so easily deterred from their mindless rush to oblivion; on the contrary, after backing what has been so vividly exposed as a bumbling idiot capable only of economic destruction, they are far more likely to “double down” on stupid rather than admit they were fooled. Only on Nov. 7th will we know for sure if the cliff has been averted or if the myth has been confirmed.

      1. Tell us what policies have been a “collosal faulire.”

        And of course, we get the usual insult: “anyone who disagrees with me is blind, clueless, ignorant, etc.” but not one of you can counterpoint with a FACT. Just childish invective.

        1. Mr. Max Planck here is a clue as to what policy has been a failure. Make a short little list of what you consider to be “Obama, or whoever he is, policies.” Close your eyes and stab the list with your pointer finger. That is the policy that has been a failure.

          1. What a substantive remark on policy. You may qualify for a job at the AEI.

          2. Don’t feed the trolls. Or click on links to their websites.

          3. Joe Matarots

            Actually, it is quit accurate given you would have the same chance of finding a policy success under the Obama Administration as you surviving a lightning strike.

        2. Joe Matarots

          Max – so you believe 8+% unemployment for 44 months is a success? You think tripling the debt in 3 years is a success? You think increasing deficit spending $1.2T a year for 3 years is competence? You think teh Middle East in turmoil is successful foreign policy? You think gas prices doubling is successful? You think 15% real unemployment is where we should be? You think economic growth at 1.5% to 2.0% is healthy? Personal income is down significantly – this is good for the middle class? class warfare and racial tensions at all time highs is a positive policy? A president that vilifies business adn entrepreneurs by telling them “they didn’t build their business” is the right message? I know entrepreneurs adn you can spin his comment any way you want – his ideology believes government is the center of the universe and that is the ignorance that will destroy America along with all of you that believe that and that social issues are what keeps America strong.
          I could go on and on but if you can’t grasp the failures before your eyes not much I point to will change you from voting for this …. this excuse maker and following him over the cliff.

          1. Sir, stop parroting the “8% for 44 months” crap, because I can read the Romney campaign’s twitter feed as well as you can and I dont need someone mindlessly repeating it.

            You think the Middle East is in turmoil now? Its been in turmoil for decades, no thanks to our policies in many cases.

            You lecture on deficits but refuse to raise taxes by a penny to cover it. Let me tell you something- you run up a tab or a credit card line, you do one thing: you pay it down. You dont steal from the benefits I’ve paid into for 40 years to cover it. So pony up- not that you would under Obama’s tax plan.

            You talk “class warfare?” Look at Romney’s little taljk. If thats not war, what is?

            I could go on, but again, keep trolling the self validating river of lies you drink from. They’ll convince you that you’re politically and economically astute, without lifting a finger.

        3. I have pose this challenge many times and have never gotten a response. Give me five good reasons to vote for Obama.

          Even through the whole DNC we got no plan to improve anything in the future and the only reason given to vote for him was the other guy would be worse.

          Since you can’t name any successful policies then all of his policies must have failed. Obamacare tax – F Foreign -F Economic -F job creation -F stimulus -F Making government bigger -A increasing number of unemployed and people in poverty -A Increase debt -A
          Lower US credit rating -A Disavow Israel and God – A Make our money worth less -A

    2. Stock Market Up (along with our 401k’s)

    3. Stock Market Up (along with our 401k’s) One really stupid war ended (along with the huge costs) and another on its way. Jobs consistently created (as opposed to hemorrhaging 800,00 per month) Health insurance for millions more people….

      I will take that over the GIANT hole Bush left us in any day!!! What’s that you say? George Bush ins’t running? I agree, but with 90% of the same economic and policy advisers as Bush, and the same “magic numbers” policies that took us from a surplus to a huge deficit, how could I possibly expect a different outcome? as they say, that is the definition of insanity….

      You would think the people that got us in to this mess would have the least credibility of anyone regarding getting us out. But…. now they are effectively saying:

      “Well yahh… I got you into the mess, but I don’t want to talk about that…. And Yes… we are slowly climbing out of this disaster, but not nearly fast enough, so you should fire the guy that turned it around and started it heading the right way again, because I can clean it up faster.”

  13. By the way folks, while you’re all working yourself into a lather about a 4.9% tax differential that affects less than 4% of the population, here’s some research that may make you stop. But I doubt it.

    1. gary gulrud

      Throwing any feces against the wall hoping for stasis has given way to primal scream therapy.

      Let the buggered rage.

    2. Marx Prick, I notice that in your link to some irrelevant historical dossier the words “Earned Income Tax Credit” and “Qualified residence interest” appear exactly zero times. By all means, continue looking under the lamppost where the light’s better.

    3. Thanks! Good information.

    4. Joe Matarots

      In all seriousness, why would anyone take a NYT article or information at face value when that publication is clearly the quitescential liberal rag of the nation?
      All anyone has to do is look at the economy for the last 4 years … if you do that objectively you can only come to one conclusion …. Obama has failed. He owns this mess. The Democrats own it because they set it in motion in 2007 when they took control of Congress and implemented Dodd-Frank and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were turned loose to support mortgages that should never have been written in the first place to people that only bleeding heart liberals felt should be given tens of thousands of dollars they could not afford to pay back.
      And what happened? what usually happens when politicians try to outsmart the market and businessmen — the market and ruthless business people took advantage of it.
      Now the Dems blame the people that did not necessarily break the law but displayed a clear lack of ethical behavior, but then we should have learned to accept this behavior by now as it is the norm from Congress and teh WH.

      1. Again: Fannie and Freddie did not cause this crisis.

        Let me help you here:

        1) Wal Mart
        2)Exxon Mobil
        3)General Motors
        5)Conoco Philips
        6)General Electric
        7)Ford Motor
        9)Bank of America

        Know what that list represents? That’s the top 10 of the 2007 Fortune 500.

        Now you look at that list, and consider what happened to those companies just 10 months later.


        Of course, the oil giants who are here help themselves to billions in tax subsidies while AEI members give themselves massive strokes over Solyndra, but never mind that now.

        By this evidence alone- this is the cream of America’s manufacturing and financial might, laid waste in no time-if you think that we were getting out of this mess by this time, you are all playing with yourselves.

        If you think CRA caused this, you’re a deluded fool whose thick skull can’t be penetrated by facts, history and the evidence in front of your eyes, IF you had the intellectual honesty to even look.

        Instead, you come here and you suckle this garbage like mother’s milk. Not happy with the pace of the recovery? Guess what? I’m not happy with the pace of the decline that caused it.

    5. An interesting compilation of basically usless statistics which prooves nothing about what current policy should be. The only conclusive deduction from those stats is that when JFK and RR lowered taxes we soon entered sustained periods of economic prosperity. It also shows that changing the tax rate on the very richest won’t change much of anything. However since Obama’s idea of rich is $200k which includes millions of ma and pa business owners increasing taxes on them throws a wet blanket on job creation. Plus there is no plan to fix the overall economic environment and Obamacare will cause serious financial harm to both small businesses and individuals.

      The taxes on the rich are merely symbolic of Obama’s punitive anti-business policies in general.

  14. Why do you guys answer the fool who is using Dr. Planck’s name? He does not exist. His statements are empty and stupid. He is a liberal religious nut. Stop engaging.

  15. Conservative former Republican

    This article is so daft, it is beyond belief. The author completely ignores the fact that neocon Republican policies of the Bush years created this colossal mess and that neocon Republican obstructionism of the past 4 years have stifled government intervention of the type that Bernanke is now forced to emulate with the Fed – that the author claims confirms the failure of Obama policies when in fact they vindicate the failure of government to function with a group of self-serving neocon Republican politicians, completely beholden to the vested money powered interest that seeks only their short term gain with lower taxes for themselves as the ultimate objective at the expense of the interests of the United States as a whole.
    The actions of Bernanke fully support the notion that there should be greater stimulus by the federal government to get the economy moving again – which has been the Democratic position all along, not the Republican position. Claiming it to be otherwise is simply self-serving narratism of the kind shown daily on Fox News – or in a word “daft”.

    1. Thomas Sullivan

      What created the subprime housing crisis was big, stupid government, which virtually mandated the housing bubble. The policies were put in place under Bill Clinton and his housing secretary, Andrew Cuomo. The policies were most vigorously protected from Republican reform in the 2000’s by Barney Frank, the Congressional Black Caucus, and outfits like ACORN (former employer of Obama).
      1. HUD quotas to write under-prime mortgages applied to Fannie, Freddie, and all the banks which wanted to expand. The quotas started at 30% in 1995 and by 2008 were 56%. By the crash, 48% of all mortgages in the US were less than prime quality, and average US housing priced had risen 60% in 10 years. Idiocy had expanded to epic proportions.
      2. Seven layers of sleeping, lazy regulators watched it happen – the Fed, OFHEO/FHFA, the SEC, Treasury, Controller of the Currency, FDIC, and Office of Thrift Supervision. They ignored the biggest financial bubble in world history.
      3. The Federal Reserve kept rates artificially low for far too long, feeding the housing bubble.

      There are a raft of books on the subject.

  16. 3 months of 8+% unemployment, a record since 1948; labor participation rate at 63.6%, lowest since 1981; weakest recovery since WWII; 5.5 Trillion in new debt; attacks on the Constitution with contraceptive rule, Healthcare mandate, appointments when Congress not in recess, not enforcing Federal laws, Holder;s contempt of COngress on Fast and Furious= that’s what Hope and Change has brought this country. We can’t survive another 4 years of Obama.

  17. 11%.

    You tell someone that this is the ‘real’ unemployment, and they know it. and more than a majority accept it.

    anyone who is arguing from the 8% range is ignorant of where we really are, or unwilling to accept the ramifications it bears on the election outcome.

    you could scoop the malaise with a piece of cardboard, but we are three feet deep, with a forecast for three more feet.

  18. James, better boil down that diatribe. I’m voting Romney but got bored in 3 paragraphs.

  19. Jack Connery

    Romney hasn’t played one thing right in this election. Why would he start now?

  20. Aw…it must be tough to look around and see all your rivals have Nobel Prizes and decades of economic data prove you’re wrong. You could grow from that like an adult…no…you’re doubling down? OK.

  21. I agree with most…but why not cut out completely the Board of Education..let the States take care of it..How much could we cut out of the Bureau of Homeland Security…the IRS and how many other worthless Bureaucrats could we dispose of???

  22. 3 years ago Keynes groveler was advocating Stimulus by 3. I wrote his sorry self to warn what would happen. Little inconsequential things like double and triple commodity prices, humongous gas prices, huge debt that would bring huge interest payments after the fed’s foot got so numb that it would be forced to take it off the throat of rates.

    Keynes groveler responded not to me, but with another one of his ‘indisputable’ peacock thrillers in his paper a few weeks later, refuting the idea that commodity prices would rise in response to overdoses of fiat money. Corn was a little over $3, gold pushing against $1000, soybeans under $8. We all know what’s happened with those values, as gas records another record average price against the backdrop of a demand now around 2002 levels.

    Keynes groverler should stick to international trade. He wouldn’t qualify for the reward from a tiny socialist country for domestic economics. He’s not good at it.

  23. Arnold Ziffel

    “In late 2007, a collapsed housing bubble helped push America into its worst economic downturn since the Great Depression.”

    “… unemployment has been stuck above 8% for 43 straight months, which hasn’t happened since the 1930s”

    Do these two quotes relate?

    Does it stand to reason?

    Do you think the American people forget what you did to our economy? Bush got 8 years, Obama will get 8 years, then lets debate who left the country in better shape.

    1. Did you not listen when BHO gave his speach at the DNC
      He promised to stay the course big spending, big taxes, big dept, big gov’t, big unemployment, big poverty, punish anyone who creates jobs, and grow the economy from the bottom up. He is the wizard of economy.

    2. It was the Democratic Party that caused the housing bubble with Fannie Mae and the Community Reinvestment Act.

      If Obama can’t improve the situation, why did he run for president?

      1. Arnold Ziffel

        W should have Freddie tattooed on his fanny…

      2. WRONG, WRONG, WRONG…..

    3. Screw you idiot, Obama is a serial lying criminal fraud who is intent on causing more damage. Your party of criminal frauds belongs in prison, not positions of power.

    4. Why do you need another four years? We’ve seen essentially the same stuff Obama’s offering from Hoover, Roosevelt, LBJ, Nixon, Ford, and Carter already. Romney and Ryan are offering Coolidge, Reagan, and Clinton (in his last six years) style policies. They may not deliver, but spending another four years doing what history, math, and economics have shown not to work makes no sense.

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