Posts tagged debt ceiling

The Cooler

But what was amazing about today’s market crash was how much it rapidly accelerated during this morning’s address by President Obama. Ostensibly the prez was attempting to assure the quivering masses that everything was gonna be just dandy, that Standard and Poors’ downgrade of the U.S. credit-worthiness was unfair, and, as Obama put it, “We are still a Triple A country!” That was about the point that traders began to bale big time and red barf covered the stock screen. It was probably not reassuring that Obama’s speech came 45 minutes after the announced time, but there’s a bit of history behind this: every time Obama (or Tim Geithner) speaks during business hours, the market begins to tank. Obama is like the William H. Macy character in the movie “The Cooler”, the guy employed by the Vegas casino because he brings such bad luck to other gamblers. The fact of the matter is that, no matter how hard Obama attempts to appease them, the business community flat-out dislikes him, doesn’t trust him, and can’t wait for him to go away.

Golden Oldies Video: Geithner Says “No Risk” of AAA Downgrade

On April 19, Geithner evidently thought he had a criminal shakedown operation well in hand. Oops.


Just as the Y2K threat was overstated but nevertheless had unexpected, adverse intermediate term consequences, I doubt this chicanery will be cost free to the public at large. But the debt overhang that ideologues have used to whip the public into a funk is profoundly deflationary unless addressed head on, via writedowns and bankruptcies offset by fiscal stimulus. Deflation means that high quality bonds are the place to be, as the market action of last week confirmed, so Treasuries benefit from the very condition that S&P depicts as a disaster.

Thus the best outcome would be if the bond and currency markets shrug off the S&P action, which would reveal that the much feared downgrade was a paper tiger. But even if the marker response is underwhelming, it is hard to imagine that Obama will not take a political toll for his colossal miscalculation. It was he who stoked the debt ceiling phony crisis to implement a neoliberal agenda, who refused to reverse course and threaten to circumvent the debt limits when the process had clearly spun out of his control.

So even if S&P fails to land a body blow in the markets, its ploy has garnered press that seems certain to taint the Administration, and thus confirms the power of its reckless conduct. Thus the cost is not likely to show up in bond yields, but in something far more fundamental: in yet more destruction of the foundations of our society for short-term, selfish ends.

Apparently we’re supposed to care about what some idiots at some corrupt organization think about anything.

Atrios (via soupsoup)

Nah, they aren’t (only) corrupt, they are culpable for this mess.

If You Need to Actually Say You Didn’t Cave, You Caved

If so many people are saying you got beaten that you actually feel the need to start publicly declaring you didn’t cave, that means you caved.

From the White House’s absurd attempt to defend the the debt ceiling deal with lies:


This is just sad. Even worse, it isn’t close to being true.

At no point in the debt ceiling fight did President Obama say the initial deficit reduction “down payment” shouldn’t cut Medicare and Social Security. In fact, it was President Obama who wanted a single payment in the form of a $4 trillion grand bargain. It was also Obama who put Medicare and Social Security benefits cuts on the table as part of the grand bargain package.

Obama caved so completely that the White House had to invent completely fake ex-post-facto criteria just so they could claim that Obama held firm on something.

If the White House’s whole myth and facts sheet wasn’t so full of dishonesty and lies, it might almost make you pity them.

What Fresh Hell is This?

Anyone happen to catch this news blurb today, buried in the back of the newspaper? If not, here’s the gist of it: newly minted Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is belly-aching about any possible defense cuts that might come from that bullshit “Super Congress Committee”.

The Next Debt Ceiling Deal Will Likely Be Much Worse

The Downward Spiral

The Downward Spiral by qthomasbower

There should be no doubt that one of the most dangerous aspects of this current debt ceiling deal, is that it set a precedent for Republicans turning every future debt ceiling increase in the future into another hostage situation to force spending cuts.

Rejecting False Choices

The triggers in the deal are meant to present the American people with a false choice, accept cuts to Social Security and Medicare benefits or allow major cuts in soldiers’ pay and veterans’ care, diabolically creating an artificial situation that pit senior citizens against our military personal. That is why it is important to stress that triggers aren’t real. There is no need for them to be pulled.

Fixing One Artificial Crisis by Creating Another

Yet in exchange for temporarily taking care of this one synthetic crisis, Congress is creating another possible crisis through the spending cut “triggers” in this deal. These triggers would automatically put in bad cuts unless the Super Congress package is approved. The triggered cuts are not well thought out. In fact they are purposely designed to be really bad and horribly structured. The intent is to make them so stupid that everyone in Congress wants to avoid pulling them.

Grijalva Statement Opposing the Bill He Voted For Yesterday

Ladies and gentlemen, your Progressive Caucus leadership:

today released the following statement on the emerging debt deal:

Text of Reid’s Catfood II Super Congress Motion

graphic by Twolf

The House voted today on the Reid motion to raise the debt ceiling (yes, before the Senate voted for it. Don’t ask). It looks like the they substituted the text of a bill introduced by David Drier on the 28th with the text of the bill Reid filed cloture on last night in the Senate.