Daily Archives: September 19, 2011


Video: Clinton: ‘Cooperation’ will revive economy

Below is a video from NBC’s Today show.


Matt Lauer asked President Clinton what business leaders say is the thing that most prevents them from investing their hoards of cash in new hiring. The number one thing that Clinton mentions is the fact that demand is weak. The business leaders are not sure that if they hire, the products they make will get sold. (It’s funny how Nightly Business Report is asking the same question of business leaders night after night and they never get that answer at all let alone as the most important problem. Notice also that this issue is not the one NBC chose for the headline.)

I think President Clinton gets it mostly right. He goes a little off track in answering how to get the consumer to spend more. Rather than telling the consumer to buck up and have a little courage, he could have reiterated his ideas on mortgage relief as a way to free up the consumer from the fear of the loss of their house. I imagine that for some people the thought of being 10s of thousands of dollars underwater on their mortgages doesn’t make them feel confident to go out and spend a lot of their $1,500 tax cut.

Then he could have talked about the government consumption stimulus in spending for public works and supporting the rehiring of teachers. People who have jobs tend to spend more freely than the unemployed do. The spending by the newly employed makes consumer demand increase to the point where other people are hired to satisfy this new demand – rinse and repeat.

He could then mention that after these two major ways of stimulating the consumer spending had been put in place, a little political jaw-boning might help.

An action like the tax cut that will only stimulate the economy if those darn real people would only behave the way we wanted them to, reluctant though they may be, is not nearly as effective as one that takes the more direct route of the government just spending the money to buy stuff.

Maybe instead of giving the $1,500 tax rebates in cash, the government ought to run it like a credit card company’s reward redemption plan. The rebate could be redeemed for products, but not for cash.


Boston Globe Outfoxes Faux Noise

The Boston Globe ran the story headlined Obama backs off from summer deals. The first pargraph says:

When President Obama announces at least $2 trillion in long-term deficit reduction measures today, he will not include all the compromises he reached with House Republican leaders before budget cutting talks broke off.

Since when are bargaining positions in negotiations that never reach a conclusion called deals? Is this an attempt by The Boston Globe to outfox Faux Noise in the field of biased journalism?

Perhaps The Boston Globe has never heard the negotiating ploy, “This is the deal, take it or leave it.”  The Republicans decided to leave it.  They cannot expect to take it latter.  Once the left it the proposed deal was “off the table” to put it in words that Republicans understand.

Obama’s taking up proposals that Republicans once made and reject after he proposes them is not quite the same thing as choosing a different strategy when your first one is rejected.  Yet there is enough similarity that the Republicans ought to understand a deal is not a deal until both sides agree to it.

Conveniently, the new incarnation of The Boston Globe web site does not allow comments yet.  Perhaps this blog post will have the same effect as my other post, The New York Tines Wages Class Warfare, had on The New York Times.


The Obama I Voted For Reappears

In the story America’s debt battle about the President’s latest tax the rich scheme, the article states:

In a defiant note, administration officials made clear Sunday that Mr. Obama would veto any Medicare benefit cuts that aren’t paired with tax increases on upper-income people.

Nice counter to the Republicans’ claim that tax increases are off the table.

Where has this Obama been hiding for the last three years?  Maybe all the grumbling and grousing from Obama’s base of supporters has finally gotten through.  You don’t suppose the letters I sent to his re-election campaign explaining why I am not sending a donation had an effect?

 


Gamers solve puzzle which stumped scientists for years and could hold key to curing AIDS

An article on the UK Daily Mail, Gamers solve puzzle which stumped scientists for years and could hold key to curing AIDS, starts off with:

Videogame players have solved a molecular puzzle that stumped scientists for years and could hold the key to finding a cure for AIDS.

A team of gamers needed just ten days to produce an answer to an enzyme riddle that had eluded experts for more than a decade.

All you parents (and spouses) who think game playing is a waste of time, take heed.