leo's blog

Afghanistan

Well, I guess the best thing you can say about it is the very thing that's upsetting the GOPers most, namely, giving a date certain when we can start to leave. That date, plus the date we'll start withdrawing troops from Iraq after the election there, are the metrics we have for judging whether this move is a good idea or not.

Bringing Back the New Deal to America

Great opinion piece from the NYT:

The whole New Deal was in a sense just a series of public options, some more optional than others, that offered government as an alternative to the often-flawed private market. The Farm Credit Administration and the Home Owners’ Loan Act used government funds to save farms and homes of Americans who would have been foreclosed on by private lenders. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation saved the private banking system by insuring savings accounts, which made the public willing to put money back in private banks. Social Security, all public and no option, rescued older Americans from living their final years in poverty....

The private insurers and lawmakers who oppose the public option also claim it would be a radical break from how things have been done in this country. In reality, it follows directly from the New Deal tradition that created many of the mainstays of American society.

Whither APR Now That Charge Card Delinquency is Less?

Ya think so?

While the fear of having cards shut down and anger over the moves banks have made can't be easily measured, there's anecdotal evidence that those emotions played into the improvement as well.

Why Oh Why Don't We Have Better Economists?

I do hope the undergrads at Berkeley get someone who's a better liberal than Brad Delong so that they get some perspective.

The guy is nothing but a mouthpiece for Rubin/Geithner -- has been since his days in the Clinton Admin.

His argument here is a wonderful example. Basically it's: the banks were sick, we nursed them back to health (by dumping $$$ on them), so move on -- nothing to see here.

No questioning of the system that led to this disaster nor any urgency to see it fixed.

The very definition of an apologist for the status quo (give or take a trillion dollars of tax-payer money).

Hats off to Reid and the CBO

It looks like we're finally going to get this done in America. 'Bout time.

China Syndrome

Thomas Palley in a post well worth reading explains:

The world economy has paid dearly for complicity with and silence about the economic policies of the last 15 years, which have culminated in the deepest and most dangerous recession since the 1930’s. It will pay still more if policymakers remain passive about China’s destructive currency policy.

Hysteria in the Headline Dept.

So transferring these prisoners to Thomson is 'spose to mean we're recreating 'Gitmo'? What's next? Space aliens?

UPDATE: Meanwhile you've got to wonder about the judgment of people who insist on staking out their own ground zero for paranoia. It certainly doesn't inspire confidence. I mean, it's when you're looking in the wrong direction that you're most likely to get sucker-punched.

You Have to Die First to be Resurrected (Public Option Edition)

Was the Public Option really as dead as the mainstream media (and even most recently by Josh Marshall) have been making out?

Or was this yet another example of 'He-said-She-said' journamalism where the reality on the ground -- Dems got the votes, Dems got the votes -- was conveniently ignored so that we could hear yet more of Chuck Grassley and Olympia Snowe?

HCR: Sen. Reid to Make Announcement at 2:15p CT

I can hardly wait...

UPDATE: Yup, Public Option is in the house (err, Senate)!

Is Fox Right-wing?

I'm not quite sure why media people like Howard Kurtz are shocked, shocked that members of the Obama Administration are calling out Fox News.

Members of the Obama Administration are observing a wise rule of survival in the jungle of hard-ball politics, namely, 'Don't ignore your opponents -- Define them'.

In any case, what they're doing is only stating the obvious. Does anyone dispute the fact that Fox News is a rightwing propaganda network?

The question is almost a sanity test. What's surprising is how the media types like Kurtz actually think this dispute is good news for Fox! (It always is, isn't it?)

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