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Thread: Barack Obama goes back on the offensive with stimulus plan

  1. #16
    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sweetie View Post
    I understand what stimulus is, but it's going to be hard to stimulate the economy when people are still sleeping in card board boxes. Do you really think buying the government new cars is going to make the rest of the nation want to spend?
    Some light reading for you:
    NPR Talks to Senators Who Complain About Spending That is Not Stimlus

    This piece should have been ridicule. Spending that is not stimulus is like cash that is not money. Spending is stimulus, spending is stimulus. Any spending will generate jobs. It is that simple. There is a question of whether the spending will go to areas that will provide benefits, long-term or short-term, to the economy, but there is no question that money that is spent will create jobs and therefore is stimulus.

    Any reporter who does not understand this fact has no business reporting on the economy.

    --Dean Baker
    Columbus Dispatch Gets It Wrong, Bigtime

    We go on the road to Ohio today, not because it is necessary to go to the Midwest to find economic reporting in need of correction, but rather because we have such a beautiful example.

    The Columbus Dispatch tells readers, "the $300 billion targeted for social programs, many of them Democratic favorites, would not generate much immediate economic activity. Improving teacher quality, providing additional cash for Head Start and promoting wellness, for example, are standard government social-spending items that have little to do with stimulating instantaneous economic activity."

    In fact, this spending, unlike the highway spending of which the paper approves, will provide an immediate boost to the economy. Paying someone to teach kids or provide health care creates jobs as surely as paying them to pave a highway. The former is better stimulus because we can typically get a teacher on the job more quickly than we can get work for a new highway contracted out and underway.

    The Dispatch goes to tell readers that:

    "More fundamentally, government spending is a zero-sum game. The only way the government can spend a dollar to stimulate the private sector is by taking a dollar out of the private sector. That can be a good idea only if one believes that politicians and bureaucrats know better how to invest that money than do consumers, businesses and entrepreneurs."

    This is exactly wrong. The whole point is that the economy has a vast amount of idle labor and capital right now. If the government doesn't spend the money no one will spend it. We will simply have higher unemployment. This is the thinking that Keynes and Roosevelt had to combat to get the economy out of the Great Depression.

    I had been telling people that we need not fear a depression, but if views like those expressed by the Columbus Dispatch are common, then we might. The economy is in a free fall right now. If the government is not prepared to spend lots of money (ideally on useful projects) then we can see a very deep and long downturn.

    --Dean Baker
    February 06, 2009
    Spending Is Stimulus #29,876

    The Washington Post tells readers that senate Republicans believe that school construction and Head Start are "both viewed as worthy programs but not ones that would provide a sufficient boost to the economy." Actually, spending on Head Start would provide an immediate boost to the economy as would school construction, insofar as it is undertaken quickly.

    If the Republicans referred to in the article really don't believe that this spending provides a boost to the economy then it is equivalent to saying that they do not believe that 2+3 = 5. The paper should point out to readers the extraordinary ignorance of these Senators.

    --Dean Baker

  2. #17
    Elite Member louiswinthorpe111's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    The digital TV coupons is to give more money to an existing program. More people will be able to buy tv converters, which increases business. A no-brainer economically since this can be spent immediately.

    Replacing the vehicle fleet is also to buy more fuel efficient vehicles. Again, money that can be spent quickly to boost the economy. Another no-brainer.
    I really don't think the digital TV conversion needs THAT much more additional money, as 92% of the US has either cable or satellite.

  3. #18
    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by louiswinthorpe111 View Post
    I really don't think the digital TV conversion needs THAT much more additional money, as 92% of the US has either cable or satellite.
    I've never seen an reliable estimate of who has what. I've heard of Nielsen doing a study last year, but then I don't think the Nielsen ratings are exactly accurate either so I doubt their study's accuracy. Even though people are whining about this provision, I don't think most realize that the coupons expire within 60-days. Coupons that aren't used would mean government money isn't spent. Although the stimulus provision allows $650 million, that does not necessarily mean $650 million will actually be spent. The large amount in the stimulus bill is just to ensure that all who need coupons can get them without Congress having to revisit funding this item AGAIN. Something clearly lost on most people. Also, the government made $2 billion selling analog lines. The amount spent on coupons hasn't exceeded this amount and isn't likely to either. Hence, the government still makes a profit on this item either way.

  4. #19
    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    oh surprise, the Rethugd are trying to gut 200 million for the nation's libraries... can't have the public educamated..
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

  5. #20
    Elite Member bychance's Avatar
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    Did you guys watch the video? He's so dreamy.

  6. #21
    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    He'd be dreamier if he's stop pussying around and start calling the Rethugs on their shit. I mean using names.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

  7. #22
    Elite Member cmmdee's Avatar
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    Yeah he needs to put his pantalones on tight and get his message across. They aren't coming up with any new ideas. That is really annoying. It's one thing to discuss how shitty an idea is over and over again but to not bring anything new to the table is stupid.
    Te amo, Obama. Sidenote. LOL.

  8. #23
    Elite Member *DIVA!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    He'd be dreamier if he's stop pussying around and start calling the Rethugs on their shit. I mean using names.
    ITA, they didn't seek approval on half the shit they force down our throats for that last 8 years..so fuck'em and feed'em beans! Stop cutting stuff from the bill that's needed. If the bill fails, the democrats will get blamed in 2010!
    Baltimore O's ​Fan!

    I don''t know if she really fucked the board though. Maybe just put the tip in. -Mrs. Dark

  9. #24
    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sweetie View Post
    I think Obama sounds good, but he needs to quit trying to push something through that has this in it:

    $650 million for digital TV coupons and $600 million to replace a portion of the federal government vehicle fleet.

    That's just wasteful.
    Obama has already said that the stimulus isn't perfect and that he's willing to work with Republicans to cut out waste. But the GOP are just focused on tax cuts, not realizing that tax cuts are pointless when people are losing their jobs and don't have the money to pay taxes.

    The problem with the Republicans is that they just don't want to spend any money period. They would rather watch the economy completely tank so that they can campaign against Obama and the Dems on it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    Republicans are not interested in anything else but gamesmanship. God, will that please dawn on someone?

    Just ram the fucker through.
    The Dems can't just ram the stimulus through without getting some Republican votes because they don't have the majority.

    Plus, there are conservative blue dog Democrats who don't want to vote for the stimulus, so they need some moderate Republicans to offset those Dems who won't vote for it.

  10. #25
    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    they need better whips
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

  11. #26
    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    At Dem retreat, a partisan love fest
    WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — A fired-up Barack Obama ditched his TelePrompter to rally House Democrats and rip Republican opponents of his recovery package Thursday night – at one point openly mocking the GOP for failing to follow through on promises of bipartisanship.
    In what was the most pointedly partisan speech of his young presidency, Obama rejected Republican arguments that massive spending in the $819 billion stimulus bill that passed the House should be replaced by a new round of massive tax cuts.
    “I welcome this debate, but we are not going to get relief by turning back to the same policies that for the last eight years doubled the national debt and threw our economy into a tailspin,” said President Obama – sounding more like Candidate Obama than at any time since he took the oath of office less than a month ago.
    Obama, speaking to about 200 House Democrats at their annual retreat at the Kingsmill Resort and Spa, dismissed Republican attacks against the massive spending in the stimulus.
    "What do you think a stimulus is?" Obama asked incredulously. "It’s spending — that's the whole point! Seriously.”
    Stabbing hard at Republicans who once aligned themselves with his predecessor, Obama made it clear that the problems he seeks to address with his recovery plan weren’t ones of his making.
    “When you start hearing arguments, on the cable chatter, just understand a couple of things,” he said. “No. 1, when they say, ‘Well, why are we spending $800 billion [when] we’ve got this huge deficit?’ – first of all, I found this deficit when I showed up, No. 1.
    “I found this national debt, doubled, wrapped in a big bow waiting for me as I stepped into the Oval Office.”
    After his remarks, Obama, clearly caught up in the moment, made the party get-together feel even more like a campaign rally with his signature call-and-response chant.
    “Fired up?” he asked the Democratic lawmakers. “Ready to go!” a group of them shouted back.
    In his speech, Obama went on to contrast the kind words of House and Senate Republican leaders with their increasingly strident opposition to the stimulus package.

    “We were complimented by Republicans saying, ‘This is a balanced package . . . we’re pleasantly surprised,’” he said. “Suddenly, what was a ‘balanced package’ is suddenly out of balance.”

    As the Senate deliberated in Washington – and packed it in for the night without finalizing a deal — Obama brushed pressed House Democrats to finalize the bill "without delay" when it emerged from the upper chamber.
    "Let's think big right now," the president urged House Democrats. "Let's not think small."
    Obama’s words bore only a vague resemblance to the prepared remarks the White House distributed to reporters as he began to speak. House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) said Obama appeared to ditch his TelePrompter about a third of the way through the speech.
    “He went to his heart, I think he spoke from his heart,” Clyburn said. “He went back to being the Barack Obama that Americans fell in love with when they went to the polls.”

    Despite the hero's welcome Obama got in Williamsburg, there remain some skeptics of the plan within his own party. But if there was any tension between Obama and the House Democrats, it was hard to see it in the room. Before Obama spoke, House Democrats and their spouses posed for cell phone photos with the president – and even with White House spokesman Robert Gibbs.
    His chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, gobbling berries and cream in white shirtsleeves, rushed out of the hall at one point, barking into his cell phone along the way as he wove between tables packed with his former House colleagues.
    When Obama finally spoke, he called Pelosi “a rock” and “the great speaker of the House.” And he said that House Appropriations Committee Chairman David Obey and other House chairmen had acted with “discipline” in passing their version of the stimulus bill.
    And while Obama said Americans are looking for the parties to work together on the stimulus, he said that it’s time to move past “the false theories of the past,” including the notion that tax cuts could cure all ills. In the process, he reminded the Democrats in the room – and the Republicans back in Washington – that he won the election in November.
    “If you’re headed for a cliff, you’ve got to change direction,” Obama said. “That’s what the American people called for in November, and that’s what we intend to deliver.”
    But Democrats have their work cut out for them if they are going to approve the package without any GOP votes. As Obama circled the room and posed for photos before he spoke, a person in the room spotted Phil Schiliro, the president’s top legislative liaison, huddled in a tense conversation with Obey, the principal author of the House — a reminder that the bill still has a ways to go.
    After the speech, Obama fielded a range of questions from Democrats in the room.
    Hoping to keep jobs in his district, Georgia Rep. David Scott appealed to Obama to continue production of the F-22 fighter plane.
    Responding to a question from Iowa Rep. Dave Loebsack, Obama said that Gen. David Petraeus and other Pentagon officials are reviewing the military situation in Afghanistan – and that he would emphasize diplomacy with Pakistan and articulate a clear strategy for the U.S. military there.
    Among the many hurdles he faces, Obama must referee an emerging divide between the fiscal conservatives in his party and those Democrats who want him to increase federal funding for key domestic priorities like education and health care. Responding to a question from Pennsylvania Rep. Chaka Fattah about that balance, Obama said, "We've inherited a mess. It's our job to clean it up."
    But the president promised to begin with homeowners facing foreclosure, telling the assembled Democrats that he would include money for distressed households in the next installment of federal funding to purchase distressed mortgage-related debt.
    In his bid to overcome partisan gridlock, Obama promised the assembled Democrats that he and Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine, the new chairman of the Democratic National Committee, would work together to mobilize voters on big issues, like energy and health care reform, utilizing the party's campaign committees in the process.
    Rhode Island Rep. Jim Langevin, who hasn't been able to walk since he was 16, asked Obama if he would remove the executive ban on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research. Yes, Obama replied, but only after he and congressional leaders figure out a way to prevent opponents from overturning it. The president closed his remarks by telling lawmakers and their families that he is "grateful and humbled" to be the leader of their party – and he said his “greatest partner,” Pelosi, “delivers on everything she promises.”
    At Dem retreat, a partisan love fest
    I hope Obama keeps up this line of attack, because it's the only way he's going to get anything passed.

    Here's the video:

    Obama: Voters "sent us here to bring change"

  12. #27
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    There is a hiring freeze in my county's public school system. And the Repugs think that spending money on schools won't help the economy?

  13. #28
    Elite Member Beeyotch's Avatar
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    Obama rejected calls for more tax cuts and significant slashing of the bill's more than $800 billion price tag, and said complaints the package was a spending bill rather than a stimulus bill were off base.

    "What do you think a stimulus bill is?" he said. "That's the point."
    I practically cheered when he said that! I love his direct, "Stop fucking around and don't play dumb with me" attitude. I liked that he sounded feisty, like a parent who just isn't gonna take shit from a whiny, manipulative teenager (*cough*GOP*cough*)and is ready to put his boot up said teen's ass.

  14. #29
    Elite Member nana55's Avatar
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    Looks like it's going to pass. 82% of the public thinks Obama has tried to get the repugs on board. If they don't get this thing passed it is going to backfire on the repugs. TAX CUTS won't work. If they did we wouldn't be in this mess.
    If I can't be a good example, then let me be a horrible warning.

  15. #30
    Gold Member Glitter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hotncmom View Post
    There is a hiring freeze in my county's public school system. And the Repugs think that spending money on schools won't help the economy?

    They are laying off Teachers at a school close to me. Can you imagine? They cannot even pay the Teachers! Who will teach these kids? The repugs? Palin?
    This thing better pass of the repugs should watch their backs.
    Life is what happens to you
    While you're busy making other plans ~ John Lennon

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