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Old 01-29-2009, 11:20 AM   #31
Shawnee123
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Problem was, he wanted only to listen and did not want to act on what Republicans said. When he was asked if he would re-structure the package to include more tax cuts, he reportedly responded: "Feel free to whack me over the head because I probably will not compromise on that part."

He apparently added: " I understand that and I will watch you on Fox News and feel bad about myself."
Great reporting. Apparently, he said "I am the grand black poobah now, and you will follow my every whim."

Reportedly, he then smacked everyone with a hickory stick.

lol...just sayin'
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Old 01-29-2009, 12:47 PM   #32
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I read the same things in several other papers, I think it does not bode well for all the bipartisan BS that has been spouted. So far this looks a lot different than the "stimulus plan" it was originally sold as. There is a lot spending in this bill, but not a lot of stimulation/job creation. Still, I'll hope for the best.
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Old 01-29-2009, 04:15 PM   #33
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The Senate will probably create a bill they can all live with, but the Repub Reps wanted to look tough first, so that it appears he caved when in fact he offered them a lot of what they wanted right from the start.
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Old 01-29-2009, 05:41 PM   #34
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Stimulus bill moves to Senate
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The Senate Finance Committee added about $70 billion to fix the Alternative Minimum Tax, which was intended to place a tax on the wealthy but now hits many middle class families.
I'd like to more on this, I thought they were giving to the middle class not making them pay more.

Quote:
Aides say housing relief is also going to be a big issue for some Republican senators. The main concerns are similar to those of their House counterparts. They want more tax cuts and less spending.

"We look forward to offering amendments to improve this critical legislation and move it back to the package President Obama originally proposed -- 40 percent tax relief, no wasteful spending and a bipartisan approach," McConnell said.

Obama has made it clear that he's not willing to budge on some of the big ticket items, like how the tax cuts are structured.

The version passed in the House is two-thirds spending and one-third tax cuts.
thats a lot of spending with a lot less tax relief.

Quote:
Much of the $550 billion in spending is divided among these areas: $142 billion for education, $111 billion for health care, $90 billion for infrastructure, $72 billion for aid and benefits, $54 billion for energy, $16 billion for science and technology and $13 billion for housing.

Those opposed to the bill say it includes too much wasteful spending, pointing to things like $335 million in funding for education on sexually transmitted diseases and $650 million for digital TV coupons.
I think there are many worthy causes where this money is going, but again, it seems as though this is a spending package not a stimulus package. The more I see the less I can determine where exactly the job creation is coming from.

Quote:
A growing number of Republicans and Democrats say measures such as those don't create jobs.

The Democratic rationale is that healthier Americans will be more productive. And on the millions for digital television coupons, the hope is that money will go to new call centers explaining how the technology works.
OMFG - are they seriously calling that job creation? That is frightening.

Quote:
"There's something in there for literally every interest. It's a pent-up wish list of spending programs that many around here have wanted to implement for a really long time," said Sen. John Thune, R-South Dakota.
Great, but excuse me Mr. Senator, We're in a fucking crisis right? Isn't this supposed to CREATE JOBS & get the economy going?

Quote:
Congressional leaders did drop some of the controversial provisions, like one that provided $200 million worth of contraceptives to low-income families.
Whoop die flocking doo - 200 million outta 800+ Billion is relatively nothing. (I can't even comprehend what planet these people are from - they're all insane.)
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Old 01-29-2009, 05:44 PM   #35
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A 40-Year Wish List
You won't believe what's in that stimulus bill.

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We've looked it over, and even we can't quite believe it.
There's $1 billion for Amtrak, the federal railroad that hasn't turned a profit in 40 years; $2 billion for child-care subsidies; $50 million for that great engine of job creation, the National Endowment for the Arts; $400 million for global-warming research and another $2.4 billion for carbon-capture demonstration projects. There's even $650 million on top of the billions already doled out to pay for digital TV conversion coupons.

In selling the plan, President Obama has said this bill will make "dramatic investments to revive our flagging economy." Well, you be the judge. Some $30 billion, or less than 5% of the spending in the bill, is for fixing bridges or other highway projects. There's another $40 billion for broadband and electric grid development, airports and clean water projects that are arguably worthwhile priorities.
Quote:
Add the roughly $20 billion for business tax cuts, and by our estimate only $90 billion out of $825 billion, or about 12 cents of every $1, is for something that can plausibly be considered a growth stimulus. And even many of these projects aren't likely to help the economy immediately. As Peter Orszag, the President's new budget director, told Congress a year ago, "even those [public works] that are 'on the shelf' generally cannot be undertaken quickly enough to provide timely stimulus to the economy."
So far, I contend that this is not a stimulus plan at all. This is simply spending money we already don't have.
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Old 01-29-2009, 06:35 PM   #36
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It is a liberal wish list by the Democrats in Congress being fulfilled by a willing President.
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Old 01-29-2009, 11:55 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by TheMercenary View Post
Hollow victory: Republicans deliver slap in the face to Barack Obama
By: Toby Harnden at Jan 29, 2009

President Barack Obama got the $825 (or $1.2 trillion over a decade) stimulus package through the House of Representatives but the 244 to 188 vote is a hollow victory indeed. Without a single Republican voting for the bill, his high-profile visit to Capitol Hill on Tuesday came to exactly naught - at least on the House side.

Obama vowed to change Washington and usher in a new post-partisan era. The the mood music and optics were pitch perfect as he trekked up to the Hill. Republicans praised his gesture, welcomed his sincere demeanour and appreciated his willingness to listen.

Problem was, he wanted only to listen and did not want to act on what Republicans said. When he was asked if he would re-structure the package to include more tax cuts, he reportedly responded: "Feel free to whack me over the head because I probably will not compromise on that part."

He apparently added: " I understand that and I will watch you on Fox News and feel bad about myself."

That's fine. No doubt Obama will indeed get beaten up on Fox News. But his failure to get even the squishiest moderate Republican - including the 11 entertained in the White House by Rahm Emanuel last night - to back him is not merely a big score for Rep Eric Cantor, Republican Whip, and the rest of the GOP leadership.

It also shows that it is not just Fox, the loony Right or Rush Limbaugh - or however else you might want to characterise the opposition in order to marginalise it - who had grave misgivings about the content of the bill.

The Democratic leadership on Capitol Hill badly miscalculated by treating the bill as a victor's charter. Not that it seemed to bother Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, who grinned from ear to ear as she announced the result of the vote.

Obama said yesterday he did not feel he had ownership of the bill. Be that as it may, if it goes through the Senate in similar fashion and is signed into law then - the efforts of Pelosio and Senator Harry Reid notwithstanding - it will be his and his alone.

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/toby_ha...o_barack_obama
hummph. He met with republicans before he met with his own party. He made concessions to them in the bill... twice, before it was written, and it was adjusted after they met and discussed it. They led Obama to believe if he gave them certain things, they would get behind him. Lots of tax cuts (over a third of the bill is tax cuts), which is all republicans ever want. I hope all those concessions get taken out, so we can have more for infrastructure.

And why should we listen to House Republicans anyway? Because they reeealy put the brakes on spending when they were in charge. They have nothing to offer but failed policies. Obama and democrats won by landslide. Republicans really should get over it and learn how to play with others.
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Old 01-30-2009, 12:09 AM   #38
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First of all, I haven't seen the bill, so I don't know exactly what's in there. But a lot of things being mentioned will create jobs, or cut money. the 200 million for contraceptions, well, it's less expensive than paying for unwanted children.

Some of the things mentioned, there was no mention of how the money would be used. for instance, the money for Amtrak could create jobs, depending on what it's for and how it's spent. R&D funds jobs, and also creates technology (or whatever) for the future. the digital TV coupons, they've already been giving those away, for months. I suppose IF they are forcing everyone to have digital TV, they should provide a way for people to view it who don't have digital televisions, satellite or cable. etc etc etc. I'm not saying there is no reason to be skeptical, but he has promised to show us exactly where the money is going. I am choosing to give him the benefit of the doubt. He's a very intelligent guy. I don't think he wants to fail.
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Old 01-30-2009, 07:16 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by sugarpop View Post
First of all, I haven't seen the bill, so I don't know exactly what's in there. But a lot of things being mentioned will create jobs, or cut money. the 200 million for contraceptions, well, it's less expensive than paying for unwanted children.

Some of the things mentioned, there was no mention of how the money would be used. for instance, the money for Amtrak could create jobs, depending on what it's for and how it's spent. R&D funds jobs, and also creates technology (or whatever) for the future. the digital TV coupons, they've already been giving those away, for months. I suppose IF they are forcing everyone to have digital TV, they should provide a way for people to view it who don't have digital televisions, satellite or cable. etc etc etc. I'm not saying there is no reason to be skeptical, but he has promised to show us exactly where the money is going. I am choosing to give him the benefit of the doubt. He's a very intelligent guy. I don't think he wants to fail.
We the details are coming out of Congress now and it is quite obvious this is something other than pure job creation. It includes many things that have nothing to do with jobs are were included on bills the Dems tried to pass before. With a Obamastamp they may have a better chance. It is a sham and the Demoncrats will have to explain it, not Obama.
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Old 01-30-2009, 04:45 PM   #40
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David Brookes on what is wrong with this bill.

First, the stimulus should be timely. The money should go out “almost immediately.” Second, it should be targeted. It should help low- and middle-income people. Third, it should be temporary. Stimulus measures should not raise the deficits “beyond a short horizon of a year or at most two.”

The Democrats need to remember that this is supposed to be a stimulus package. As a Head Start teacher, I want a well considered HS funding bill. They have time to do that.
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Old 02-01-2009, 03:45 PM   #41
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Economists Debate: Diverse Perspectives on Stimulus

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- Notwithstanding reports that all economists are now Keynesians and that we all support a big increase in the burden of government, we the undersigned do not believe that more government spending is a way to improve economic performance. More government spending by Hoover and Roosevelt did not pull the United States economy out of the Great Depression in the 1930s. More government spending did not solve Japan’s “lost decade” in the 1990s. As such, it is a triumph of hope over experience to believe that more government spending will help the U.S. today. To improve the economy, policymakers should focus on reforms that remove impediments to work, saving, investment and production. Lower tax rates and a reduction in the burden of government are the best ways of using fiscal policy to boost growth. –Statement signed by more than 200 academic economists

- The fiscal package now before Congress needs to be thoroughly revised. In its current form, it does too little to raise national spending and employment. It would be better for the Senate to delay legislation for a month, or even two, if that’s what it takes to produce a much better bill. We cannot afford an $800 billion mistake… The problem with the current stimulus plan is not that it is too big but that it delivers too little extra employment and income for such a large fiscal deficit. It is worth taking the time to get it right. –Martin Feldstein, Harvard University

- We simply don’t know how well the proposed stimulus will work — if at all (is aggregate demand always the relevant war?). It’s a kind of Hail Mary pass, an enduring belief in aggregate demand macroeconomics at the theoretical level, even in light of broken banks, sectoral shifts, and nasty, failing expectations, all mixed in with hard to spend well, slow to come on line, monies. Yes it could work but our agnosticism should be strong rather than just perfunctory. –Tyler Cowen, George Mason University
Outstanding article with some pros and cons from some of the best economists.

There are a lot of mixed opinions, but overall they do not seem very positive.
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Old 02-02-2009, 03:55 AM   #42
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An opinion piece that says what a lot of economists are saying.

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Economic Recovery Act is wiser alternative to massive spending

Congressional Democrats have engaged in a full offensive to convince the American people that another massive dose of borrowing and spending is the solution to our economic tribulations. They talk of an economic near-Armageddon without as much as a trillion dollars in new spending. The rhetoric, in point of fact, sounds remarkably similar to the appeals for their last economic solution, the disastrous Troubled Asset Relief Program.


The truth is, proven by history, that massive government spending is not a solution. And the American people know there is another way — a real economic solution that empowers our people without mortgaging our future. After a year of bailouts, rebates and taxpayer-funded backstops, we can move toward renewed prosperity by unleashing the potential of and providing economic relief for our real economic growth engines — hard-working Americans and businesses.


Unfortunately, congressional Democrats and the president are immovable in their intent to spend our way into prosperity. So they have set forth a proposal heartbreaking in both its purpose and its consequences. It must be made clear: The Democrat proposal is not a stimulus, but rather a gross political opportunity to borrow against future generations to achieve ideological goals today. As White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel recently said, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste.”

http://thehill.com/op-eds/economic-r...009-01-27.html
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Old 02-02-2009, 06:45 PM   #43
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Depressing economics

Willem Buiter is worried:

I used to be optimistic about the capacity of our political leaders and central bankers to avoid the policy mistakes that could turn the current global recession into a deep and lasting global depression. Now I’m not so sure.

I share his fears, though not in all details. Protectionism, I’d argue, is less of a danger — both in terms of whether it will actually happen and in terms of how bad it would be if it does — than Willem thinks. But the capacity of our leaders and central bankers to avoid depression-era policy mistakes — and, I’d add, the capacity of our economists to avoid falling into depression-era fallacies — is proving far less than I’d hoped.

In the United States, the Republican party remains committed to a belief in that old tax-cut magic, with no willingness to rethink its doctrine in the face of catastrophe. In Europe, the ECB is basically operating on the principle that unorthodox policy would be very hard, so we must assume that no such policy is needed. And so on.

And economists, who should be helping introduce some clarity, are on the whole making things murkier. I had thought that the lessons of the Depression would help guide us through this crisis; but it turns out that a large part of the profession knows nothing about those lessons, and is peddling fallacies exploded three generations ago as if they were profound new insights.

So yes, we can have another depression — because those who refuse to learn from history may be condemned to repeat it.

Paul Krugman
http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/200...ing-economics/
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Old 02-02-2009, 08:18 PM   #44
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As long as our leaders keep telling us that this is going to last for years, it will. As long as they keep talking our situation down, nothing will change.
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Old 02-02-2009, 09:46 PM   #45
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As long as our leaders keep telling us that this is going to last for years, it will. As long as they keep talking our situation down, nothing will change.
Sounds sort of like Jessie Jackoffson telling the masses how we have to keep the people down.
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