“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Sunday, August 26, 2012

You Are Probably Worse Off Than You Were Four Years Ago

In March, the Berkeley economist Emmanuel Saez shocked a lot of people by calculating that during the first year of the recovery from the 2007-2009 recession, incomes for the top one percent grew by 11.6 percent while incomes for the bottom 99 percent grew a mere 0.2 percent. (All figures here are in “real dollars,” i.e., they discount for inflation.) Granted, the one percent had taken it on the chin during the recession; from 2007 to 2009, incomes had fallen twice as fast for the one percent (36.3 percent) as for the average family (17.4 percent). The rich always lose big in recessions, because so much of their income comes from capital gains. (Indeed, the one percent took an even bigger share of the nation's income losses between 2000 and 2002, which included the “tech bubble” recession of 2001.) But Saez’s calculations showed that the one percent had come roaring back. In 2010, fully 93 percent of the recovery ended up in the pockets of the one percent. One year later, the bottom 99 percent were marching in the streets.
When I wrote about Saez’s findings in March, I said things had likely gotten better for the 99 percent in 2011, because unemployment was inching downward. And maybe they did. But they sure didn't get better for the average American household. Indeed, some very disturbing new data from Sentier Research, a private firm, by two former high-ranking Census statisticians, indicate that median household income has fallen significantly more during the recovery (4.8 percent) than it did during the recession (2.6 percent). Only at the end of 2011 and during 2012 did median household income start to creep up again, and it hasn't crept very far. Going back all the way to 2000, Sentier found that median household income has fallen by 8.1 percent. During these dozen years labor productivity—output per worker per hour—has increased by 2.4 percent, on average, per year. The more valuable American workers become to their bosses, the more income they lose.
Median household income losses between June 2009 and June 2012 occurred for nearly every conceivable demographic group. Family households lost 4.7 percent. Nonfamily households (i.e., people who live alone) lost 7.5 percent. Men who live alone did very badly; they lost 9.4 percent. Households headed by African-Americans did even worse; they lost 11.1 percent.  Married-couple households weathered the, um, recovery better than others, but still lost 3.6 percent. Weirdly, two-earner households lost more income (5.9 percent) than one-earner households (4 percent), perhaps because they started out with more income to lose. Households headed by full-time workers lost 5.1 percent. Households headed by private-sector workers lost 4.5 percent, while households headed by government workers lost 3.5 percent.
Income losses occurred at all levels of educational attainment. The steepest losses were for those with “some college, no degree”; they lost 9.3 percent, followed by people with associate’s degrees (8.6 percent), high school grads (6.9 percent), people with bachelor’s degrees or more (5.9 percent), and high school dropouts (5.3 percent). High school dropouts lost the least because they never had much to lose.
I’ve previously noted that a lot more wealth was lost during the recession in Republican regions than in Democratic ones. In that sense, it was a “Republican recession.” This pattern didn’t really continue during the recovery. To be sure, from June 2009 to June 2012 the biggest income losses were in the Republican West (8.5 percent) and the smallest income losses were in the Democratic Midwest (1.1 percent). But income losses were equally bad in the Republican South (4.9 percent) and in the Democratic Northeast (4.9 percent)—two regions that would seem to have absolutely nothing else in common. On a non-regional basis, households in the aggregated red (Republican) states lost slightly less income (5 percent) than in the aggregated blue (Democratic) states (5.2 percent). Since that’s basically a tie, I think we have to conclude that the Republican recession was followed by a bipartisan crap recovery. Swing states, interestingly, did worst of all; households there lost 5.7 percent in income. Maybe things will even up when Obama and Romney spend a king's ransom there this fall.
Did anyone come out ahead? Yes: the elderly. Those aged 65 to 74 saw their incomes increase by 6.5 percent, while those aged 75 and older saw their incomes increase by 2.8 percent. Many of the first group and nearly all of the second are retirees. The only way for typical households to make more money in this economy is to withdraw from it. (Warning: This doesn't work if you're under 65.)
All told, this is a stunningly bad economic record for an incumbent president to run on. The fact that Obama’s still the favorite testifies to how uniquely terrible the Romney-Ryan ticket is, and perhaps also to how much blame extremist congressional Republicans deserve for consistently blocking nearly every plausible avenue to economic recovery. Still, there’s no avoiding the fact that the economy has worsened over four years for the typical American household, even as it has improved for the one percent. Thank goodness Mitt Romney is about the last person on earth who would ever want to point that discrepancy out.


  1. Four more years? Are you kidding me? Do I need to go into more detail on the implications of declining incomes and the additional social burdens they come with?

    This will be exasperated by an imported underclass hungry and yearning for a government check paid for by someone else.

    Amateur hour is over.

    1. Bring back the Misery Index!

      Looks like these days the only fortunate folks in America are the Geezer 1%ers.

      They can still afford the high cost of their own soon to arrive funeral.

  2. Why not study the idea of a gold standard? Ron Paul would support the idea. Rufus laughs the idea out of court, which is probably a good reason to do it. Might make more sense than creating a few trillion dollar platinum coins. Romney's advisors seem to be mostly against the idea of a gold standard. What's wrong with a little study?

    I'd probably prefer an alfalfa standard but I never get what I want anyway.

  3. Actually, as I've pointed out several times, Median Household Incomes have been falling since 1999.

    Median Household Income

  4. Ten weeks before the election, a voter poll commissioned by The Inquirer finds President Obama leading Republican rival Mitt Romney by a significant margin in Pennsylvania, raising the question of whether the Keystone State is up for grabs on Nov. 6.

    The Inquirer Pennsylvania Poll, led by a bipartisan team of top political analysts, concluded that if the election were held now, Obama would win the state by nine percentage points - 51-42 - with 7 percent of voters undecided.

    The telephone survey of 601 likely voters, conducted from Tuesday through Thursday, had a statistical margin of error of plus or minus 4 percent. The results, which include firmly committed supporters and those leaning toward one candidate or the other, are comparable to those of other recent polls, including one released Thursday by Muhlenberg College, which also had Obama leading by nine points in the state.

    Jeffrey Plaut of Global Strategy Group, a Democratic polling firm, said the results may indicate Pennsylvania has lost some of its "swingy-ness." He said Friday that Democrats would have to fail to turn out their base voters to "put the state in play."

    His survey partner, Republican Adam Geller of National Research Inc., said Romney clearly was behind in the state. But he said Obama's current lead could be less - perhaps six, five, or four points - in light of the margin of error and the proven tendency of undecided voters ultimately to vote against incumbents.

    "Maybe if Romney decided to spend more time and resources in the state of Pennsylvania, the state certainly could be in play," Geller said.

    Barely half of poll respondents approved of the job Obama has done as president, a finding that Romney could build on, Geller said. He said he expected the race to tighten.

    But only about four in 10 respondents had a favorable view of Romney, who, starting with this week's Republican National Convention, must burnish a personal image tarnished by a summer's worth of negative Obama ads.

    Romney's choice of Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin as his running mate does not appear to have given him a Pennsylvania boost. Plaut said the numbers showed Romney might have done better here if he had picked Gov. Christie, who has a strong favorability rating across the Delaware from his home turf.

    Plaut said it was significant that 57 percent of poll respondents said they believed Obama would win Pennsylvania and its 20 electoral votes; only 29 percent said they thought Romney would. That expectation could become self-fulfilling if it influences Election Day turnout.

    The country's sixth-largest state, Pennsylvania has not favored a Republican for president since 1988, when it picked George H.W. Bush over Michael S. Dukakis.

    Yet with its combination of East Coast and Midwest influences, its two big cities and myriad small towns, its union halls and farmers' markets, Pennsylvania has appeared a ripe target for both major parties every four years.

    The state is heavily Democratic in voter registration, but has both a Republican governor and a Republican legislature. Its voters have a history of party switching and ticket-splitting.

    A solid majority of those polled said they thought the state and the nation were on the wrong track.

    On average, they gave the economy of Pennsylvania a grade of D-plus; they gave the nation's roughly a D.

  5. Replies
    1. He actually has been giving some very good speeches lately, but the media doesn't mention it so nobody but those in attendance know about it.

  6. Wait till the Seniors figure out that Ryan/Romney are going to destroy them, not through Medicare, but MEDICAID.

    1. Why do they either one, when their request for an operation will come back "Service Request Denied - Culling Department"?

  7. The price of gasoline bottomed out in 1999, and the Median Family Income has been falling ever since.

  8. I'll never forget the things my father told me about the Great Depression. How cheap everything was, but how it didn't matter, because no one had any money.

    That was your "Gold Standard" at work.

    1. I'll never forget the things my father told me about the Great Depression. How we never even felt it, wouldn't have known it had happened if it weren't for the news papers, and what an excellent thing a broad based family farm economy is for staying out of trouble.

    2. Land Grants a government welfare program that worked wonders.

      Keeping boobie's family afloat for three generations.
      Getting something for nothing sure paid off for them.

  9. I find it funny that the POTUS is held responsible for individuals ups and downs.

    On another note:
    Not a mention of the shooting of bystanders in NY by the cops. These guys are trained wielders of heat and 9 are injured taking down 1. Can you imagine, as urged by many here, if a whole bunch of civvies were deploying their heat as well? A good old fashioned shoot out with even more casualties.

  10. Our whole economy is the shits, not just "individuals." The trick is figuring out "Which" POTUS to blame.

    1. POTUS, a little bird told me, actually has little to do with the state of the economy, but don't pass it around. Not this year.

  11. We are entering an "energy constrained" world. Which leads to a GDP-Constrained World.

    So, now, instead of sharing a growing gdp pie, we'll fight over a shrinking gdp-pie.

    1. I dunno:

      If energy cost more to produce it will add to GDP. A shrinking GDP pie can be more effectively explained via demographics.

    2. Oil Imports SUBTRACT from GDP.

    3. They are also consumed which ADDs to GDP.

    4. Ash, GDP is "Gross Domestic PRODUCT," not Consumption.

    5. Consumption is part of the calculation of GDP.

  12. An interesting statistic is to look at what percentage of a nation's imports are "energy."

    In the EU, it's Greece, Spain, and the other PIIGS that are leading that particular hit parade.

    1. Of all the "at-risk" nations in the world, the U.S. probably has the most potential for improvement (we've already improved significantly) in this area.

      What with Biofuels, the shale oil plays, and improving fuel efficiency of the fleet we can make/have made great strides.

  13. That Mr Obama and his team from Goldman Sachs have not remedied the economic situation that Mr Bush and his team from Goldman Sachs put US in, not surprising, at all.

    The idea that Mr Romney and his team from Goldman Sachs would make an appreciable difference in course, comical.

  14. Canada is energy independent.
    It exports a lot oil.
    What does gasoline and diesel cost the retail consumer in Canada?

  15. The Toronto Globe and Mail reports that gas (occasionally called petrol here) recently hit 1.40 — gas is measured in litres in this metri-cized country — at a Vancouver station in suburban Richmond. Get out your calculator and that comes out to about $5.60 a U.S. gallon.
    ...about 40 percent of what Canadian motorists pay at the pump goes to taxes.

    So ... without the 40% tax Canada's price per gallon is ...

    In the US...
    On average, as of April 2012, state and local taxes add 31.1 cents to gasoline

    Which brings the pre-tax cost of my gasoline to ...
    $3.36 per gallon.

    100% domestic oil production does not lower the price of gasoline.
    That price is set on the global marketplace.

    1. The U.S. and Canada are pretty quickly becoming an apples and oranges case. We pay less at the pump, but then we have to go out and buy healthcare, whereas Canada supplies the healthcare through taxes paid.

      One thing that I think people overlook is that, population-wise, it's a pretty small country - about 10% the size of the U.S., I believe. As a result, that very large oil and gas sector, and, its attendent high wages, makes a large difference. Canada now has a higher GDP/Capita than the U.S. by the way.

    2. The tax bite varies, but the base price of the fuel remains the same.

      It is set globally, not locally.

      Drill baby drill, all you want.
      The price of gas will still be set globally.

      The oil will be exported, to the highest bidder.

      Unless, of course, the US were to Nationalize the supply.
      Like they have in Mexico, where retail fuel is subsidized by the government.

      Regular Unleaded- Magna: $2.97 per gallon

      Premium Unleaded- Magna Premium: $3.11 per gallon

      Diesel: $2.99 per gallon

      The perils of Socialism.

  16. If the goal is to lower the price of fuel at the pump, then lower cost additives must be in the mix.

  17. “I don’t think you or anybody who’s been watching the campaign would say that in any way we have tried to divide the country." 43.64% (1,922 votes)

    Claims "no one accused Mr. Romney of being a felon" when his own deputy campaign manager made accusation on CNN 22.75% (1,002 votes)

    Claims he has no connection to cancer ad, campaign site has same argument in slideshow 4.93% (217 votes)

    O-I-H-O 13.22% (582 votes)

    CBO issues dire warning of fiscal cliff, Obama never addresses it 15.46% (681 votes)

    Total Votes: 4,404

    1. Obamateurism of the Week

      Go to Hot Air now to cast your important vote.

  18. I fail to understand Quirk, normally a brilliant guy. There the Obama Administration is interfering directly in the traditions of long standing of his faith and he is going to, or threatening to, vote levitating buddha. Thus, condemning himself to political irrelevance. The NLP doesn't even expect for people to vote for them, as only a few are ripe in any generation. Thus Quirk is about to turn down a chance to vote for the better instead of the very worst by voting for an impossible best. So if Obama wins, Quirk's faith traditions get gutted, and the country goes completely to hell one can blame Quirk as much as anyone else, for throwing his vote away.

    Dumbest slogan of this vote cycle: "They're all dicks."

    1. A religious ethicist could make a really good argument that throwing one's vote away on an impossibly is a sin. Having an obligation to try to reduce the amount of suffering and frustration in the world, one would have a duty to vote for the party that might actually do that. And that would eliminate the NLP, any third party, and Obama in the current election cycle.

  19. All tied in O-I-HO?

    Sorry to pull out the O-I-H-O pic for the front page twice in one day, but … hey, does anyone really get tired of it? It’s in a good cause, however, as a new poll from the Columbus Dispatch shows everything tied in Oiho Ohio with just over two months to go. And when I say “everything tied,” brother, I mean everything:

    The closest Dispatch Poll in modern history shows the races for president and U.S. Senate in a dead heat in battleground Ohio.

    For the record, Republican Mitt Romney holds a “lead” of 0.22 percentage point over President Barack Obama. That’s a mere 2 votes out of more than 1,730 cast for president in the mail poll.

    By comparison, Sen. Sherrod Brown has a landslide going over GOP state Treasurer Josh Mandel with a margin of 0.87 point. That’s a whopping 15-ballot bulge.

    The poll’s margin of error is plus or minus 2.1 percentage points, so the takeaway is that the presidential matchup is tied at 45 percent and the Senate struggle at 44 percent among likely voters.

    A couple of notes on this poll. One, there doesn’t appear to be any links to the raw data, so it’s impossible to look at the sample. Two, the Dispatch doesn’t give much information on the internals, either; they mostly give some quotes from respondents and look at down-ticket races. The topline results aren’t an outlier, though; the current RCP average for Ohio in the presidential race is Obama +2.0, 47.2/45.2. For the Senate race, the difference is more substantial, as the RCP average has Brown up 4.5 over Mandel, although that mostly comes from a PPP poll that put Brown up ten points earlier in the month.

    In both cases, though, the news is better for the challengers than the incumbents. Both have had a full term to build support in Ohio (Obama four years, Brown six) in a state both won in their previous election. Getting only 45% and 44% of the likely-voter respondents shows real weakness in their positions, and an opportunity for challengers to make a case for change. This is corroborated by one of the few internals shared by the Dispatch that shows a majority (55%) who say that Obama performed worse than they expected in 2008 — including one in 7 Obama voters. Overall, 62% believe the country is on the wrong track, a very bad number for high-level incumbents.

    This isn’t a result that should have Team Romney high-fiving. They will need to see Romney’s numbers start rising soon in Ohio in order to be sure that they are capitalizing on voter dissatisfaction with Obama. Team Obama, however, should be very worried — and so should Sherrod Brown.

  20. This comment has been removed by the author.

  21. Room for rent - 9 month lease required - no pets - no damage deposit for relatives - only sperm deposit required - includes oven - free medical - 24 hour security - wet nurse if required - friendly family atmosphere - house sitter on call ...

    August 24
    Grandma, baby, doing fine after nine-month 'rental'
    A Maine woman bears her own grandson when pregnancy is ruled out for her daughter due to an illness.

    By Edward D. Murphy
    Staff Writer

    Madden Hebert is a typical week-old baby -- "eating like a champ and he doesn't fuss too much," according to his mother.

    click image to enlarge

    Madden Hebert rests with his mom, Angel Hebert, right, and his grandmother, Linda Sirois. Sirois carried the baby for her daughter, who has a heart condition.

    Family photo
    Select images available for purchase in the
    Maine Today Photo Store

    But there's nothing typical about how he came about.

    Last week, Madden's grandmother gave birth to him.

    "It was all pretty simple as far as I was concerned," said Linda Sirois, 49, of Madawaska, who carried and delivered Madden because her daughter, Angel Hebert, had a heart condition that meant it would be unsafe for her to get pregnant.

    Sirois said she has let her daughter know for years that she would become a surrogate mother for her if a doctor suggested that she not become pregnant.

    Hebert, 25, of Presque Isle, said she and husband Brian Hebert, 29, got that word last summer.

    "It was pretty disappointing and we were pretty upset about it," Hebert said. "But we kind of had an idea that it was a possibility and, all along, my mother was saying, 'I'm here and I can carry for you.' I guess we didn't really take her seriously."

    So Hebert decided to find out if her mother really meant it.

    "I called her last summer and I'm like, 'So, you know that offer you've been offering? Is that offer still on the table?' " she said.

    Her mother gave her answer by immediately calling fertility clinics around the area. Most rejected Sirois because of her age, she said, but finally the Reproductive Science Center in Lexington, Mass., agreed as long as Sirois passed some tests.

    She did and became pregnant the first time her daughter's egg, fertilized with Brian Hebert's sperm, was implanted.

    Sirois, the mother of four before Madden, including twins, said the pregnancy may have been her easiest, with no morning sickness or complications.

    "I didn't have any young children around -- my youngest are in college -- so that made it easier," she said.

    Madden was finally delivered on Aug. 13, by C-section, weighing 7 pounds, 14 ounces.

    "It was awesome," said Hebert, who was in the delivery room with her mother. "It was an awesome, awesome experience."

    Sirois said the rest of the family, as well as friends in Madawaska, were uniformly supportive.

    "I had so many well wishes and encouragement, even strangers in the community," she said.

    Sirois noted that it's not unique for a grandmother to be a surrogate for her own grandchild -- she read of one 60-year-old doing it -- and the fertility center had a couple of similar arrangements, so the staff didn't treat it as very unusual.

    Sirois herself has a pretty straightforward view of it.

    "I just saw it as I was babysitting for a few months," she said. "It was their child all along. It was just a room for rent."

  22. All this Republican Convention talk of studying a return to the gold standard seems to be stemming from Ron Paul and his folks, and they are throwing a sop to that group. There was talk of instituting a platinum standard by a few crazies in the Ron Paul camp, but wiser heads have prevailed, and that seems to be off the table entirely --

    Republicans tease with gold standard, but idea seen full of bugs

    (Platinum hits two-month high on South Africa supply fears)

    NEW YORK | Sun Aug 26, 2012 10:50am EDT
    (Reuters) - U.S. Republicans have all but guaranteed the backing of the "gold vote" this November by raising an idea that even the most bullish mainstream bullion boosters believe is unrealistic - a return to the gold standard.

    Gold prices would likely surge to $10,000 an ounce, the greenback's credibility would vanish and global superpowers would risk a new trade war if Republicans were to restore the link between the U.S. dollar and gold that was severed 40 years ago.

    But that isn't stopping Republicans from considering the idea, who will call for a commission to look at restoring a fixed value for the dollar, according to a draft of the party platform to be adopted at the Republican National Convention that begins on Monday in Tampa, Florida.

    Gold has returned to the political discourse recently with the growing prominence of politicians like Ron Paul, the congressman from Texas who has said that he decided to enter politics on the day that President Richard Nixon shut the "gold window" in 1971, and with the Tea Party, which helped Utah pass a law last year to make gold legal tender.

    But their support won't change the practical hurdles that would face such a wrenching shift in the currency system, one likely to have catastrophic effects on trade and growth.

    To back the U.S. monetary based currently at around $2.56 trillion by the 262 million ounces of gold held by the United States government means bullion prices would soar as high as $10,000 an ounce, Capital Economics strategists said.

  23. Samsung's attempts to wield standards-essential patents that way prompted the European Commission to start an investigation into whether the company was trying to stifle competition.

    But the Seoul court said it "could not be considered an abuse of rights." In so doing, the court allowed Samsung, and other companies with large patent portfolios, to force companies with fewer patents to give up rights in South Korea on innovations in exchange for access to patents that are part of standardized technology.

    But the U.S. jury, in finding that Apple violated none of Samsung's standards-essential patents, took the opposite view.

  24. Of course, war stains all who take part in it. Wellington's men in the Peninsula Wars could no more prevent their Spanish guerrilla allies committing atrocities than the Brits and Americans could prevent their Soviet allies raping five million German women in 1945.


    The Allies of the Second World War did their share of extrajudicial executions – though on nothing like the scale of their enemies – and, thanks to YouTube, our very own beloved Free Syria Army has actually advertised its own murders in Syria. Chucking policemen off roofs and shooting shabiha to death after torturing them doesn't burnish the reputations of La Clinton or the messieurs Fabius and Hague.

    Keeping clean is a dirty business.

  25. The theme of Obama's radical anti-Americanism is even less useful in explaining what has been (so far) his most poisonous legacy: the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2009 (a.k.a. Obamacare), which indentures the people not to any politburo or warlord but to insurance companies. The act has now been deemed constitutional by the Supreme Court.

    Mitt Romney, Obama's opponent in the coming election, pioneered the individual mandate that forms the core of Obamacare while he was governor of Massachusetts. Obamacare (treated very briefly in the film) in fact argues against D'Souza's biographical thesis: As a candidate Obama opposed the individual mandate, and nothing from Ayers or Barack Obama, Sr. suggests any source for this cockamamie scheme.


    But the job of a film is not to have a consistently logical argument. It is to make that argument persuasively, and 2016 does so with emotional and narrative power.

  26. If U.S. President Barack Obama wins re-election, let him thank his lucky stars that entitlements are out of control. If Medicare was capped and couldn’t shoot up automatically, unemployment would probably be in double digits.


    All this also has a Keynesian-type effect to make up for the way state and local governments keep cutting back spending. This was the first recession where we responded by cutting public-sector jobs.


    But for the moment, look at the bright side: At least the bucks keep going out the door. One can think of public spending that could have a much bigger multiplier effect -- for example, a dollar to stop a teacher or a cop from being fired.

  27. Perfect, like as in the German people weren't good enough fighters for Adolph --

    "Today, President Obama sent out a campaign email essentially blaming his supporters if he loses."

    Here’s the perverse logic:
    Last week, when I was in Iowa, voters told me they were feeling it. The numbers back it up: Our side is getting outspent 2-to-1 on the air there.
    But the folks asking me about this don't want an explanation -- they want to know what I'm going to do about it.
    And the fact is that solving this problem is up to you ….
    We're losing this air war right now.
    I don't have as much time to campaign this time as I did in 2008, so this whole thing is riding on you making it happen.

    Excellent. Now we know who to blame when Obama loses - - - Rufus!

    1. Here's a guy that agrees with me on the Adolph comparison --

      He's a megalomaniac. Hitler blamed Germany for its massive defeat on both fronts when it was all his fault for trying to play the military genius.

      There are too many similarities to ignore.

      This ass really comes across as someone who is so completely UNFIT for the job of being president that it is virtually impossible to believe how he got into the White House in the first place.

      He truly is the biggest fraud perpetrated upon the American people in my lifetime!
      Obama... you didn't build that White House...

      I laughed when I read this. He will go down blaming everyone else except himself

    2. Have you contributed to the Obama Campaign today, or any day, Rufus?

      The Leader is counting on his friends like you.

      Don't let him down now. He hasn't the time to campaign much this year, he says. All the more reason to give now, give plenty, give often.

      If you don't the coming fiasco will all be your fault.

      I was going to contribute to Mittens but decided not to after they dissed Sarah. So now I am giving mine to some select pub Senate candidates, in Nevada and Montana, to be precise. I plan to vote for Mittens however, angry as I may be.

    3. "We're losing this air war right now", said Obama.

      Republican B-17s starting to lay waste to the Obama Festung Oiho even as we speak. Retreat by Obama to ChicagofestungIllini seen as inevitable.

      "They are getting their asses kicked", said General Merciless.

  28. .

    We are entering an "energy constrained" world. Which leads to a GDP-Constrained World.

    So, now, instead of sharing a growing gdp pie, we'll fight over a shrinking gdp-pie.

    I don't get it. I agree imports are deducted from exports as a factor in calculating GDP.

    However, since oil imports make up only about 2% of GDP why would we worry about that as a major factor at least in the near to mid-term?

    Jobs, demographics, etc. will likely play a bigger role in the near to mid-term I should think.

    (My reply buttons aren't working again.)


    1. Cause we live in an energycentric world according to Ruf.

      Don't forget the robots. They have a say in all this too, you know -

    2. It's not the imports so much, Q, as the price at the pump/mpg.

      Maybe you guys have just been so wealthy, so long, that it's not intuitive to you that high gas prices put a damper on commerce; but, you can bet your sweet bippies, they do. Of course, if that oil was extracted from your neighbor's farm that would mitigate the circumstances, somewhat. At least you would get a local pass-through of the money.

      All I can say is that business nosedived around here when gasoline went over $3.25, and it's been down ever since. You can yell "correlation isn't causation" to me till you're blue in the face, but I could find nothing else that could explain it.

      All I know for sure is that the global, and local, economies are doing just exactly what the "peak oilers" said they would. No one else can make that claim.

  29. Michigan, 10 days ago.

    Baydoun/Foster (D) 8/16 - 8/16 1733 LV 44 48 Romney +4



  30. .

    So if Obama wins, Quirk's faith traditions get gutted, and the country goes completely to hell one can blame Quirk as much as anyone else, for throwing his vote away.

    Lord, Bob, you are as dumb as a stump.

    Above you mention that Romney has been giving some very good speeches. That's what it takes for you? A good speech? And the fact he is not Obama? Nitwit.

    Come on, Bobbo, at this point, you should know everything you need to know about these two guys. I do. And I won't be voting for either of them. But why don't you convince me. Give me a list of reasons I should vote for Romney. (Don't bother telling me what Obama has done wrong. I won't be voting for him either. And besides, in the majority of issues these guys will end up doing the same anyway.)

    You have been posting pro-Romney bs here for days. You ought to have it memorized. Convince me to vote for Romney. I could use a good laugh.


  31. I just wrote 18 reasons, but was on Chrome, pushed the button, and it all vanished.

    I need to take a little nap, but will do over in good time, by tomorrow I hope.

  32. The German debate has not only focused on Greece, but has also targeted Mr. Draghi, president of the ECB. Jens Weidmann, president of the Bundesbank, Germany's central bank, and a former adviser to Ms. Merkel, warned Sunday that relying on the ECB to buy bonds of struggling euro-zone countries could induce dependency among European governments.


    Mr. Weidmann's comments suggest the rift between the German members of the ECB policy-making council and other members of the ECB board is widening. Ms. Merkel told ARD television that she didn't believe the ECB was overstepping its mandate, contradicting Mr. Weidmann, but she also came to Mr. Weidmann's defense, saying his role as monetary policy gadfly was constructive.

    "I think it is good that Jens Weidmann warns the politicians again and again," Ms. Merkel said. "I support Jens Weidmann, and believe it is a good thing that he, as the head of the German Bundesbank, has much influence in the ECB."

  33. 1) He won't diss the Queen.
    2) He won't suck up to every muslin in America.
    3) He won't open the borders to every and all.
    4) He will support Israel.
    5) He won't turn the White House into a barefoot dancing disco palace..this is important to my wife.
    6) He will enforce the law equally.
    7) He will be better for racial relations.
    8) He has two citizen parents.
    9) He will be a piker compared to Obama in exporting jobs overseas.
    10) His energy policy will have a better chance of getting something actually done.
    11) He will sign the legislation overturning ObamaCare so we can do over with a much much better plan.
    12) He did not spend his youth committing felony after felony by snorting coke.
    13) He does not eat dogs.
    14) He won't fuck with your religious traditions.
    15) He doesn't like Alinsky, etal.
    16) He is not a commie.
    17) He doesn't have friends who are cop killers and terrorists like Ayers.
    18) He won't wink at the Russians and say I'll be free to sell USA out after the elections.
    19) We won't have Hillary as Secretary of State.
    20) He will appointment some others than commies to the US Supreme Court.
    21) He is not an affirmative action candidate, and has been successful in his own right, not coddled all along the way.
    22) He can write his own paragraphs.
    23) He is the least sleazy of the two.
    24) He doesn't have a secret agenda to weaken the country.
    25) He may be a flip-flopper but isn't a pathological liar.
    26) He likes horses.
    27) He doesn't play the race card.
    28) He doesn't play the class warfare card.
    29) He is against killing born alive children.
    30) He gives a lot to charity.
    31) He has some dignity, and is not a low life scum bucket.
    32) He won't be spooking into your private affairs as much as Obama.
    33) He won't be shipping automatic weapons to Mexican gangs so he can blame the dead there on our 'lax gun laws' as an excuse to mess with out 2nd Amendment.
    34) He can read a teleprompter if he has too.
    35) He won't talk about having a private security force, stronger than the Army.
    36) He is sane, not crazy like Obama.

    and others too many to mention

    1. .

      This is it?

      Bob, you are a buffoon. You waste all this space on the trivial and ignore the two biggest issues facing the country right now. Economic growth and jobs, clearly an admission Romney can do nothing about either.

      With the exception of a couple on your list, the rest is all fluff. You are like Rush’s ‘dittoheads’ or Hannity’s ‘true American patriot’, in other words a doofus with too much time on his hands, visiting conspiracy websites and concentrating on minutiae while ignoring the national interest as well as your own self-interest.

      Before I start let’s get one major assumption out of the way. Romney will toe the GOP line. He has said he would do it; and he has provided us with evidence of it by his budget, by the stated opinions he has changed to woo various groups, and by choosing Paul Ryan as his VP. Unless, you think he is lying, all you can do is go by his words.

      WRT your list, I will treat it with the same level of seriousness you seem to have done in pulling it together.

      1. He won't diss the Queen.

      (I see you started out with your big guns. You nitwit. Who gives a shit? What is this TMZ? I’m more worried about how he deals with Cameron than the Queen. Besides she’s got bigger problems to worry about right now.)

      2. He won't suck up to every muslin in America.

      (No, he’ll suck up to every religious nut job and banker in America. It’s just a matter of choosing your poison. Whoever is elected will be sucking up to someone. If you don’t like Muslims being sucked up to, you can vote for Romney and have the Banksters and the Evangelicals sucked up to.)


    2. .

      3. He won't open the borders to every and all.

      (More nonsense from the trout streams of Idaho. We can only assume Romney will follow the GWB example and Bush was a piker compared to Obama. The current administration deported 1.1 million illegals in his first three years. We can assume Romney will continue with recent GOP policy of sucking up to the President of Mexico, assuring a steady supply of illegals as workers for their business interests, and having their DOJ go out of their way to prosecute border agents trying to do their jobs.)

      4. He will support Israel.

      (Gee, nothing new there. We are already supporting Israel with money, with arms, with sanctions on Iran, with votes in the Security Council. Don’t you really mean he will get us into another ME war in support of Israel? It might surprise you but most here don’t view that as an especially good thing.)

      5. He won't turn the White House into a barefoot dancing disco palace..this is important to my wife.

      (I’m glad this came from your wife, since I can’t disagree with it; but still, a trivial reason for electing a president.)

      6. He will enforce the law equally.

      (Nitwit. Like all administrations they will enforce the laws they want to enforce. The DOJ under at least the last three administrations have been disgusting, paid for hacks, political appointees willing to sign off on anything the president asks them to do, from violating posse comitatus, to signing off and justifying torture, to gutting habeas corpus.)

      7. He will be better for racial relations.

      (I assume what you mean is we white guys will finally get our fair share.)

      8. He has two citizen parents.

      (Economically, the country is going down the shitter and you are worried about stuff like this. Lord, Bob, grow a brain.)


    3. .
      9. He will be a piker compared to Obama in exporting jobs overseas.

      (I can see you have chosen not to be serious.)

      10. His energy policy will have a better chance of getting something actually done.

      (What? Write more subsidies for big oil?)

      11. He will sign the legislation overturning ObamaCare so we can do over with a much better plan.

      (Bob, you ignorant slut. One, there is no way Obamacare will be overturned. It may be tweaked but it won’t be overturned. A much better plan? Good heavens, man, surly you are not talking about the Ryan plan? The GOP had two decades to offer up a comprehensive healthcare plan and what did they give us, Bush’s unfunded Medicare Part D that has contributed significantly to the entitlement problems we have right now. Their inaction is the reason we ended up with Obamacare in the first place. And what do they offer us now, moonbeams and promises, no specifics, just moonbeams and promises or the end of Medicare as we know it.)

      12. He did not spend his youth committing felony after felony by snorting coke.

      (No, he spent it as a spoiled cake eater beating up kids who were ‘different’, and that only when backed up by his peeps, by the way. A real class guy.)

      13. He does not eat dogs.

      (No, he tortures them by strapping them to the top of cars until they are so scared the shit themselves. Again, a real class guy. It speaks to either his intelligence or his character, or the lack thereof.)

      14. He won't fuck with your religious traditions.

      (I’m more concerned with my moral traditions than with my religious traditions and I’ve seen the constitution gutted under presidents of both parties. I have no doubt it will continue under Romney. The only way to stop these guys is through the courts.)

      15. He doesn't like Alinsky, etal.

      (How do you know what he likes? It changes ever day and with every constituency that he talks too. His choice of Ryan as well as past history seems to point to him liking Rand. Do you think she is any better? It speaks to the character of the GOP we have seen over the last decade or so.)

      16. He is not a commie

      (No, he’s a crony capitalist.)


    4. .

      17. He doesn't have friends who are cop killers and terrorists like Ayers.

      (No, he’s got friends like Ryan who given his way would do far more damage to this country than Ayers could do in his wildest wet dreams.)

      18. He won't wink at the Russians and say I'll be free to sell USA out after the elections.

      (No, he will just get us into another ME war.)

      19. We won't have Hillary as Secretary of State.

      (Obviously. Who will he have? Condi Rice? Good luck.)

      20. He will appointment some others than commies to the US Supreme Court.

      (How the fuck do you know? In fact, you haven’t a clue. I was surprised by the Robert’s ruling on Obama care. And these guys you seem to applaud, gave us Citizens United and the Montana ruling. “Corporations are people too, according to Romney” Moronic.)

      21. He is not an affirmative action candidate, and has been successful in his own right, not coddled all along the way.

      (You are way too funny to be real.)

      22. He can write his own paragraphs.

      (But, he doesn’t. Like all of these dicks, he hires someone to do it for him.)

      23. He is the least sleazy of the two.

      (You haven’t a clue. Only the Shadow and the Quirkster knows what evil lurks within the hearts of men.)

      24. He doesn't have a secret agenda to weaken the country.

      (Where did you get a copy of that ‘secret agenda’, Bob? Mats? Chip and Dale? I assume you are still talking to your squirrels.)


    5. .

      25. He may be a flip-flopper but isn't a pathological liar.

      (Right. Why are you voting for Romney as president? Because he’s a flip-flopper. Well, gee, that makes sense, duh. You doofus.)

      26. He likes horses.

      (I would imagine about as much as he likes dogs. Why are you voting for Romney as president? Because he likes horses especially as a tax right-offs. Lord.)

      27. He doesn't play the race card.

      (No, in fact, he tries to eliminates it altogether by suppressing the vote.)

      28. He doesn't play the class warfare card.

      (No, he is the reason for the class warfare card. Romney is the stereotypical supply sider and the definition of a crony capitalist.)

      29. He is against killing born alive children.

      (More power to him. Get back to me when he has done something about it.)

      30. He gives a lot to charity.

      (Whoopee-fucking-do. By the way, how much and to whom, and for what purposes? I guess he deducts that on his tax returns. Whoops, forgot. What tax returns.)

      31. He has some dignity, and is not a low life scum bucket.

      (Dignity and $7.50 will get me some coffee at Starbucks. I knew you would be getting around to the ad hominems eventually.)

      32. He won't be spooking into your private affairs as much as Obama.

      (If you believe that, you are certifiable. It’s been going on for decades and your buddy GWB put it on the fast track. Obama continued the practice and it won’t stop until someone affected gets his day in court and SCOTUS sticks it to POTUS)

      33. He won't be shipping automatic weapons to Mexican gangs so he can blame the dead there on our 'lax gun laws' as an excuse to mess with out 2nd Amendment.

      (No, he will be shipping automatic weapons to Syrian Muslims (oops, there’s that damn word again) to help assure the US is dragged into another senseless war in the ME, all in the name of ‘democracy’.)


    6. .

      34. He can read a teleprompter if he has too.

      (I assume you are just getting tired.)

      35. He won't talk about having a private security force, stronger than the Army.

      (Gee, I don’t know, Bob. Didn’t it say on one of Mats web posts that Romney was actually organizing a Mormon Militia, just in case?)

      36. He is sane, not crazy like Obama.

      (Einstein: “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome.” Romney promises to continue the same GOP policies that got us into the mess we are in currently. Now that is insane.)

      and others too many to mention

      (Thank goodness. While it initially gave me the good laugh as I had requested, it stopped being funny some time ago. You are an unserious man, Bob. And you are an enabler for the dicks in the GOP. Go back to Mat and Dale and the American Thinker and let them tell you what to think.)


  34. Now that Michigan is about dead even, yours may be the historical deciding vote, Quirk!

    Rise to the occasion, boy!

  35. Every other word out of his mouth won't be "I", "I", "I".

    He won't have a bald drunken baffoon as his Vice-President.

    1. .

      No, every other word out of his mouth will be, "No, that's not what I meant," or "You are taking my words out of contect," or "What I was trying to say was." or "What would you like me to say?"

      As for VP, he will have a spiffy dark immenence, a politically motivated liar, who you can sell your soul to.


  36. He understands at least that there may be transcendence.

    1. .

      I've come to the conclusion that is you only hope, Bobbo.


  37. We won't have a fat assed First Lady telling us how to eat, while charging up mega million vacations to the taxpayers.

    He won't support two differing categories/levels of punishment in schools depending on race as Obama is advocating.

  38. He won't parade around like a fool in front of styrofoam pillars.

    He will try to appeal to our better natures, not our fallen natures.

  39. Care to join me Doug?

    It' kinda fun really.



  40. There won't be all these edicts dictatorial coming down from above lacking any Congressional support, much less public support, whatever, like the recent let all the aliens come in and give the illegal ones here a pass, as of late.

  41. There won't be all the funneling of mega money to his pals political through contracts and such.

  42. Looks like Ol' Isaac's done decided that N'awlins might be more fun than Disneyworld.

  43. Great, we were getting down to our last acoupla hundred, thousand, quatrillion, bazillion mosquitos in Tunica Co. We wouldn't wanna run out.

  44. :)

    You might get some close-ups of those snakes you love so well too!

    1. Who knows, maybe an alligator or two in the kitchen.

  45. And, the plain truth, from the Kitchen Cabinet, reasons to vote FOR Mitt Romney -

  46. The departure of UN observers makes the reports of such atrocities more difficult than ever to verify and activists have had to backtrack on their death tolls for such "massacres" in the past. Still, there were numerous accounts of large-scale killings.


    Daraya is known for its peaceful political protests and is the birthplace of the Local Co-ordination Committees, an activist network.

    "We know well about the brutality of the regime, but this still surprised us," Osama Nassar, a local activist, said. "We didn't expect to have this in our home town."

  47. This is fun.

    I am confident Romney won't have an attorney general who is found in contempt of Congress for lying to committee, with holding requested information, and flipping off subpoenas, and end up being sued in Court over same.

  48. Romney has a valid Social Security card.

    1. Obama’s Social Security Number challenged

      Thursday, July 5, 2012

      If Barack Obama has an immediate eligibility problem, it is more likely to derive from the Social Security Number he has been using for the last 25 years than from his birth certificate.

      Ohio private investigator Susan Daniels has seen to that. On Monday, July 2, she filed suit in Geauga County (Ohio) Common Pleas Court demanding that Jon Husted, Ohio secretary of state, remove Obama’s name from the ballot until Obama can prove the validity of his Social Security Number.

      Daniels, who has vetted thousands of Social Security Numbers for numerous other clients, has done her homework. In her filing, she thoroughly documents her contention “that Barack Obama has repeatedly, consistently, and with intent misrepresented himself by using a fraudulently obtained Social Security Number.”

      To acquire appropriate standing in court, Daniels has gone to the trouble of establishing herself as a valid write-in candidate for president. Before she is through, this 70-something mother of seven, who has been a licensed Ohio PI since 1995, may cause Obama more trouble than the Romney campaign.

      Patriot Update