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Paul Craig Roberts On Our Economic Doom

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Paul Craig Roberts, former U.S. Treasury Secretary bottom-lines the present economic doom of America’s working -- and non-working -- class in "Another Fraudulent Jobs Report." He writes:

Americans live in a matrix of total lies.

What can Americans do? Elections are pointless.

Read below the fold...

Obama’s BFF Larry Summers is Also Wall Street’s

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I read this past week that a poll revealed that 4 out of 5 Americans are economically insecure.

I also read that Obama is seriously thinking of bringing back one of the US-economy wrecking balls, Larry Summers, to replace Ben Bernanke as Fed chairman in January.

Of course Obama is.

William Greider in "No More Second Chances for Larry Summers" confessed that when he heard rumors of Obama’s intention to nominate Summers he dismissed it all as a sick joke. He writes: Read below the fold...

transcriber's picture

"I have waited for five years now to see one figure on Wall Street speak in a moral language... waited for a judge, for our president, for somebody, and it hasn’t happened." Jeffrey Sachs at Philly Fed

[Lambert here: With "The Sachs Conjecture," I'm giving a shorthand label to the Sachs claim that "the moral environment as pathological." He talks about Wall Street, but it's clear he also means the politicians Wall Street buys, Wall Street's support structure, including the political class, for which the shorthand would be "the elite."

David Graeber comments:

I was at that conference. Sach’s talk was greeted with loud applause. Later some guy from the CATO institute got up and condemned him for using inappropriate language and echoing a “Communist-style” morality that assumes all hedge fund managers must be crooks by definition. Exactly one person applauded. Then the IMF economist on the stage (Michael Kumhof) said: “actually, not only agree with Sachs, I think he doesn’t go far enough…”

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letsgetitdone's picture

The Small Ball Trillion Dollar Coin Seigniorage Exception

The exception to the general pattern focusing on the Trillion Dollar Coin (TDC) as the solution to the debt ceiling problem I outlined and critiqued in my last post, is in Joe Wiesenthal 's posts here and here. Wiesenthal alone criticizes, rather than ign Read below the fold...

letsgetitdone's picture

Trouble Is When We Take the Truth Off the Table

Arianna Huffington is calling attention to “the great budget battle of 2011,” between the President and the Republicans. She correctly points out that whichever of the two sides win, we, the people, lose. She's right, of course, and says further:

Just look at this so-called "debate" we're having. The problem ostensibly on the table is the deficit. But, without any context, the raw deficit number is meaningless. If the country's debt were, say, $50 million, that wouldn't be a big deal. If some average American suddenly found himself $50 million in debt, well, that would be a big deal. And that's because the country's GDP is a lot bigger than the average person's income. So what we're talking about is really the debt-to-GDP ratio.

Yet the debate is concentrated almost entirely on the debt side of the equation and barely at all on ways to increase the GDP side. . . .

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letsgetitdone's picture

Federal Spending Doesn't Cost Anything!

Over the past year, I've written numerous posts about fiscal sustainability, fiscal responsibility, and the various fairy tales and myths underlying what almost all of our policy makers have to say Government finance. I continue to search for a meme that will catch fire and lead people to seriously question the false idea that the US can't: afford to put everybody back to work, see to it that all Americans have good health care; provide an excellent education for our children, reconstruct the energy foundations of our economy, re-invent our infrastructure, and take the measures necessary to solve our other major problems before they get any worse.

It's the idea that we can't afford to pay for many things that we would like to do, that makes it so hard to legislate solutions. With “the national debt” at the level that it is, many legislators who might normally do whatever they could to address our various problems just throw up their hands. The rhetoric of fiscal sustainability and fiscal responsibility is too powerful for them to oppose. They want to be “responsible.” They want to be “grown-up.” They want to be known as people who can make “tough decisions.” So, as long as they believe that Government spending costs something, and adds to a crushing debt burden that we have to do something about, they will not vote for effective measures that will solve our national problems because either the cost/debt implications of solutions involving additional deficits are too great, or the tax implications of matching the costs with additional revenue are a burden they are unwilling to face. Read below the fold...

Can Kucinich Drive A Stake Through the Zombie Heart of the Fed? (Part 1-Return to Jekyll Island)

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Stop talking about Kucinich and the olive pit. Forget about the ride on Air Force One.

Kucinich has positioned himself to plunge a stake through the zombie heart of the arch enemy of American well being, The Federal Reserve Bank.

WE HAVE GOT TO HELP HIM AND PAY ATTENTION. The Bank Mafia of America has captured the minds, hearts and souls of almost all of our amoral leadership in the administration and Congress who have to a grotesque degree stopped watchdogging our rights and needs for a stunning amount of time now.

Abandon all hope that Obama or the legacy Democratic Party will rally to save Americans from economic terrorism. In fact, trust that they will rally to enable the economic terrorists. Read below the fold...

More Establishment Blather From Krugman

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Paul Krugman can be a remarkable dumb fuck when he wants to be. You see as a classical economist, he has been trained to interpret markets in terms of supply and demand. Speculation when it occurs only happens at the margins. It is either transient or insignificant to larger forces.

This time around Krugman invokes global scarcity and global recovery to explain why commodity prices have been surging. He tells us we live in a finite world, sounding a lot like that other Times airhead Thom Friedman when he does. It all sounds so plausible, at least if you don't look at it too closely. If you do, it comes across as the dimwittery that it is. Read below the fold...

The Fed Protecting Bank Fraud, Nth Edition

A November 28, 2010 NYT editorial laid bare a scheme by the Fed to protect banks from the consequences of widespread deceptive and fraudulent behavior. The Truth in Lending Act (TILA) of 1968 granted to borrowers the right of rescission for three years in home equity (HELOC) and mortgage loans if the bank failed to provide "material disclosures". What this means is that in these loans a person's house is used as collateral for the loan. This is the bank's security interest. Read below the fold...

letsgetitdone's picture

Ezra Looks Over There At the Debt-to-GDP Ratio

Ezra Klein did a piece yesterday offering the conventional deficit dove position on deficits and debt. Here's a commentary on it.

Gallup's survey of voter preferences for closing the entitlement gap is incomplete It suggests the options on entitlements are like a second-grade arithmetic problem: You can either add stuff (tax increases) or subtract stuff (benefit cuts). What's missing is the option you learn about in high school: growth.

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Fed admits: Money is a spreadsheet

[Welcome, Naked Capitalism readers! Welcome, Dealbook readers! --lambert]

NPR has a fluff piece from "All Thing Considered" [sic] on how two Flunkies For The Masters Of The Universe saved the world ZOMG!!! which includes this gem, hidden in plain sight: Read below the fold...

"Consumer Protection Act" authorizes Fed to provide up to $4 trillion in "emergency funding"

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Bloomberg:

Here are some of the nuggets I gleaned from days spent reading Frank’s handiwork:

– For all its heft, the bill doesn’t once mention the words “too-big-to-fail,” the main issue confronting the financial system. Admitting you have a problem, as any 12- stepper knows, is the crucial first step toward recovery.

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