Archive for July, 2010

I came across this piece from the Financial Times, which has replaced the Wall Street Journal in many quarters.  In it the author spells out the short-term political advantages for the GOP of “trickle-down” economics that come at the expense of potentially disastrous long-term consequences.  It sheds some light on the current attitudes of some members of Congress who see no problem in the deficits caused by extending the Bush tax cuts while at the same time decrying unemployment benefit extensions.  Do politics trump what’s best for the country and the entire global economy despite what most responsible economists caution?  Seems so.


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More has come to light from John Boehner’s interview with the Pittsburgh Tribune Review.  In the same interview I mentioned in my last post, Boehner mouthed the GOP talking point about opposing the drilling moratorium.  But in the next sentence, he allowed as how in the case of deepwater drilling, we ought to pause until we know what caused the well to fail and until we know how to prevent a recurrence.  I have news for the Minority Leader.  That’s exactly what the moratorium would do — pause deepwater drilling until we can figure out what went wrong and how to prevent it from going wrong again!

And then there’s Michele Bachmann (R-MN) who railed against the US becoming part of a global economy.  I’m not exactly sure where she’s been for the past decade or so, but we ARE part of a global economy.  It’s the dream child of the free-market folks — offshore your production to the cheapest and least regulated labor markets in order to maximize profits.  The downside, of course, is that markets are never fully free.  The best we can hope for is fair competition.  And the downside of offshoring production is that it also drives down wages at home, making it more difficult for large numbers of people to afford your product.

And the there’s Sharron Angle, the tea party candidate who won the GOP senatorial primary in Nevada.  She’s been busy trying to walk back some of her more outrageous statements so as to broaden her appeal to folks who are a bit less unhinged than she is.  Somebody obviously told her that advocating abolishing Social Security isn’t politically popular, so she’s trying to blur the distinction between outright abolition, privatizing it (since that concept worked so well for George W. Bush even before the markets melted down), and something she calls personalizing it.  This from the woman who also wants to go back to Prohibition — in Las Vegas no less!  And who thinks that rape and incest are all just part of God’s plan for people and that a woman who’s been raped just needs to have a little faith that her assault is part of that plan, as is carrying the resulting child to term.  And then there’s her great sympathy for the long-term unemployed, who she suggests should simply take one of those many low-paying jobs she says are out there just waiting instead of feeling entitled to unemployment insurance benefits.

Meanwhile, I’m going to be out of reach for a week or so — a trip to visit mother-in-law and then a fun trip up the coast a bit for a weekend on the beach with good friends and an annual bbq gathering with some of spouse’s aerospace buddies, some of whom were giants in the industry.

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