Morning Must Reads: October 4

In the news: no jobs report, Obama's cancelled trip to Asia , and just how angry Americans are at the government over the shutdown.

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Nicholas Kamm / AFP /Getty Images

The US Capitol in Washington is seen on September 30, 2013 , a day before the government shutdown began.

  • “A certain shutdown narrative has become all-too-familiar: It is holding us back from gazing at the National Zoo’s pandas throughout the day and perusing the halls and walkways of our national museums and parks. But for millions of the nations poor, the situation could soon be far more serious, and simply moving a gate or clicking on a link to another video won’t solve their problems.” [TIME]
  • Today marks day 4 of the government shutdown and Politico writes, “The first week of the shutdown saw little more than press conferences and political stunts, with lawmakers prioritizing insults rather than showing progress toward reopening the government and avoiding a looming default.” [Politico]
  • President Obama has canceled his entire trip to Asia in the wake of the shutdown. Press Secretary Jay Carney said in a statement, “This completely avoidable shutdown is setting back our ability to create jobs through promotion of U.S. exports and advance U.S. leadership and interests in the largest emerging region in the world.” [Washington Post
  • “The hard-line stance of Republican House members on the government shutdown is generating increasing anger among senior Republican officials, who say the small bloc of conservatives is undermining the party and helping President Obama just as the American people appeared to be losing confidence in him.” [NYT]
  • Miriam Carey, the 34-year-old woman who officials are saying the black Infiniti that drove into the Capitol was registered to, may have been suffering from depression. Officials believe it was Carey who led the fatal car chase into D.C. on Thursday evening. [Washington Post]  
  • “The American League of Lobbyists on Thursday blasted a Democratic lawmaker for proposing that lobbyists be banned from congressional office buildings during the government shutdown.” [The Hill]
  • The monthly jobs report isn’t coming out today, but feds are keeping themselves busy with different numbers [Businessweek]
  • CBS News poll shows just how Americans are angry at the government over the shutdown: 87% say they’re unhappy with Washington; 44% say they’re dissatisfied, and 43% expressed out right anger. But there’s hope, about 2% say they’re “enthusiastic.” At least it’s something, right? [Politico]
  • U.S. and Israel Share a Goal in Iran Talks, but Not a Strategy [NYT]

 

 

1137 comments
MrObvious
MrObvious

http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/10/04/american-catholics-back-popes-downplaying-of-contentious-social-issues/?hpt=hp_bn1

You can tell when the American Bishops and Cardinals are out of step with regular folks and that when most American Catholics agree with the pope. I'd say this tracks the feeling most people have when it comes to GOP policies which mirror in so many ways the hard line Bishops.

This is a good thing. Having leaders with the guts to stand up for basic rights and to talk about real problems is important.

collioure
collioure

I can't find the article I read two weeks ago, but the drift of it is . . .

Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke continues to print money and thereby keep interest rales low because he doesn't want to be around when interest rates rise and the interest on the federal debt becomes monstrous.

Today the debt is about $17 trillion and the interest rate thereon something like 2.7%.

When interest rates rise to normal levels 6-to-7%, the interest on the federal debt will rise by some $500-700 billion, throwing the federal budget into chaos.

Such is the legacy of the excessive spending, first by Bush, and more recently by Obama.

fitty_three
fitty_three

D'ya think Syria is doing this because Vlad is radiating the warm fuzzies?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-24419468

I'm sure that the baggers won't agree, but while Vlad's telling Assad he's gotta go along, Obama's holding the gun. Good move.

It's been a busy week for POTUS, handling the crisis at home, neutralizing Al Queda assets abroad, and harvesting the fruits of cooperative, yet forceful, diplomacy.

outsider
outsider

@collioure  

Of course she is; gossip columnists are supposed to entertain you. Though maybe i should classify her as an entertainment reporter, rather than a gossip columnist. 

 

MrObvious
MrObvious

@collioure 

Except of course spending is way down under Obama. But don't let the actual numbers bother you.

MrObvious
MrObvious

@fitty_three 

It's a terrible situation. No one wants to touch the Syrian civil war - but I read something the other day. That the reason why we saw the beginning of the conflict is that Syria was hit by a massive drought a couple of years back (and still suffer from it) and all these farmers had to flee to the cities to find jobs. And that was the beginning of what turned out to be mass demonstrations and eventually the attack on the demonstrators.

It's funny how so many things are interlinked. People can survive living under despotism as long as they're fed, but when they are faced by despotism and poverty and starvation people tend to get upset.

And that's true throughout our history. Sure - some Monarchs were really bad but when people suffered from over taxation,  famine and such it lead to rebellions. The democracies that sprung up as a result of people wanting power over their own destinies are also why we have the kind of societies that we have. With basic safety nets, basic health care because we can suffer bad times as long as we're not starving to death in the process.

So I just can't figure out why the current GOP want to take us back pre democratic reforms to the good old 1800s and that misery.

collioure
collioure

@MrObvious @collioure  

Federal spending under Obama has averaged $3.5 trillion per year.

Vs about $2.8 trillion in Bush's last term.

(I am excluding FY2009, technically a Bush  budget year but significantly altered by new Obama spending)

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@collioure @fitty_three Buying time for Assad to do what exactly? If he doesn't give up his chemicals Russia will withdraw support for him. So what exactly does he gain?

forgottenlord
forgottenlord

@MrObvious

A friend of my Wife's family - a Vietnamese ex-pat - gave the opinion that the South was doomed to lose to the North because in the South, the warmer climate allowed them to work a lot less for a comfortable life.  He said it was the same thing in the Civil War.  I heard the same idea from a Texas ex-pat.  You just don't need to do much to survive because you don't have the cold Winter where banding together and striving to survive is imperative.  If you follow that logic, you find it perfectly logical that rural environments - where they grow their own food and have limited dependence upon the outside world - is far more Conservative than urban environment where they have a basic dependence upon the outside world.

We are creatures of adaptation above all else - we adapt to the level of effort required to live a comfortable life.  What comfortable is is different for everyone and what level of effort we're willing to put in is different, but we adapt and it is rare to find someone who will go further.  The south has adapted in such a way that lends towards non-apparent interdependence while the north has always had to adapt more heavily to conditions.

The only problem with this theory: what the f*** is with California?

MrObvious
MrObvious

@collioure @mantisdragon91 

There's absolutely nothing wily about the GOPers. They're opportunistic slaves to corporate money. The latest crop are a bunch of ignorant dolts that can't be bothered with knowing how our democratic system works. They cradle the constitution they can barely understand and they frequently confuse it and the declaration of independent.

They're stubborn and they know that they will hurt this country if we default. They're hoping that the dems will act their age and flinch and do the best thing possible in the face of such obstinate childish behavior. And if the dems flinch this will be GOPs behavior going forward.

Why bother building majority political power when you can simply hold firm and extort our economy whenever it comes up?

And people will lose interest and confidence since they know this is wrong and if the dems give in they also know that whatever they vote for won't matter since there will always be a bunch of surrender monkeys that subvert their will.

collioure
collioure

@mantisdragon91 @collioure 

I don't know.

All depends on how he plays this.

He could take the upper hand, or he could  be a big loser.

In the face of a wily adversary the stationary President is a sitting duck.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@collioure Nothing. Much like a rat backed into a corner he is showing his teeth to mask the stench of his fear.

outsider
outsider

@collioure @MrObvious

Yeah, but what you read is contrived or just plain false.

Because you said so, right?

You're very full of yourself, i'll give you that. 

And the fact that you're completely wrong, so very often, is kind of entertaining.

collioure
collioure

@mantisdragon91 @collioure @MrObvious  

Obamacare defunding might have been the initiial parry, but I perceive Boehner's top priority concerning the reduction of deficit spending.  He may also be seeking a one-year delay in the individual mandate as well.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@collioure @mantisdragon91 @MrObvious He is behind held hostage by 30 Tea party crazies. This is all about ObamaCare. More importantly this is the second Democratic President in a row they have pulled this stunt on. When was the last time the Democrats did that to a Republican President?

collioure
collioure

@mantisdragon91 @collioure @MrObvious  

I don't agree with your premise.

Moreover, I don't know Boehner's bottom line this time, but I sense a reduction of the deficit is among  his top two priorities for raising the debt limit.

collioure
collioure

@MrObvious  

BTW the deficit for FY2013 is about $750 billion vs GDP of $15.7 trillion.

So despite all your happy talk, the deficit is slightly less than 5% of GDP while GDP is growing at, say, 2.5%.  In other words we're falling further behind.

collioure
collioure

@MrObvious @collioure  

Yada yada yada

Four years with $1 trillion deficits and now some $700 billion.

Every one of those deficits brings us just that much closer to maxing out the nation's credit card.

Tell me when the deficit as a percentage of GDP will be less than our growth rate?

MrObvious
MrObvious

@collioure @MrObvious 

Like reading the blaze or any other 'winger site which is nothing but speculation and punditry as suppose looking at the actual data?

Right - thanks for your input.

MrObvious
MrObvious

@collioure @MrObvious

http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/budget/historicals

Here you go. Historical numbers and projected,.

http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/browse/collectionGPO.action?collectionCode=BUDGET

More info

Seriously.

'No it ain't' is only useful if you know wtf you're talking about.

http://www.cbo.gov/publication/44521

CBO

Budget Projections for the Next 10 Years

The economy’s gradual recovery from the 2007–2009 recession, the waning budgetary effects of policies enacted in response to the weak economy, and other changes to tax and spending policies have caused the deficit to shrink this year to its smallest size since 2008: roughly 4 percent of GDP, compared with a peak of almost 10 percent in 2009. If current laws governing taxes and spending were generally unchanged—an assumption that underlies CBO’s 10-year baseline budget projections—the deficit would continue to drop over the next few years, falling to 2 percent of GDP by 2015. As a result, by 2018, federal debt held by the public would decline to 68 percent of GDP. 

But heres the dog in the dog house

The size of such changes would depend on the amount of federal debt that lawmakers considered appropriate. For example, bringing debt back down to 39 percent of GDP in 2038—as it was at the end of 2008—would require a combination of increases in revenues and cuts in noninterest spending (relative to current law) totaling 2 percent of GDP for the next 25 years. (In 2014, 2 percent of GDP would equal about $350 billion.) If those changes came entirely from revenues, they would represent an increase of 11 percent relative to the amount of revenues projected for the 2014–2038 period; if the changes came entirely from spending, they would represent a cut of 10½ percent in noninterest spending from the amount projected for that period. 

One issue seems to be social security. A thing that can be changed by simply removing the cap. And another is of course raising enough revenue, which can be increased slightly to balance the long term gap.


There you go, did your job for you without shirking both the positives and the negatives and without just going 'na-uh'

MrObvious
MrObvious

@collioure @MrObvious 

And you're an idiot. I can read. I don't give that ability up because I vote a certain way. I don't need to lie to my own eyes because I to proud to concede the fact that I might be wrong.

I'm basically not you and I will never be so dense.

MrObvious
MrObvious

@collioure @MrObvious 

No, math. I know it's a particular challenge of yours but the numbers are out there. No need to fantasize about anything when it's in plain fudging black and white.

CBO estimates that if we continue to follow the current budgetary numbers and recovery we will be digging into the deficit pretty darn good.

Provided of course that GOP doesn't strangle our economy with their shenanigans but then again it's hard to tell what morons like that will do.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

Sure  it is Curly. Everything Obama does is bad because Krauthammer and Noonan tell you it is.