Comments for http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html en-gb 30 Fri 28 Aug 2015 01:48:34 GMT+1 A feed of user comments from the page found at http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html dennisjunior1 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=98#comment95 Justin Webb:But the Republicans have a point do they not? I think that the Republicans have a point; but...They want to be unable or unwilling to make compromises.....If you are going to fund diabetes research, why not just do it? I have to agreed with those remarks! And, start funding diabetes research.....You can make a long-term case for American medical leadership being good for the American economy but will it kick start spending and hiring in the short term? I think it will kick start spending and the employment opportunties in the health care field ....~Dennis Junior~ Wed 25 Feb 2009 03:51:11 GMT+1 William1950 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=97#comment94 To spend from an endless tree of money is the great American dream that seems to have been planted by both political parties. I am for better health care, better roads, control of the educaton system at the University level (where have all these greedy people been trained at) and a demand on American workers and manufactoring to build the best of everything. To pay for these massive costs is as dangerous as the money tree because it means allowing Europe to rearm, to allow war torn civil wars to destroy women and children, to allow and force the nations of the world to spend their money on defence so we can spend ours on America. I will state the following; DOW to 4600, 18% unemployed, six more large banks failing and ten more findings of out right stealing from Wall Street. To buy the US out of this problem the following, electrical and fuel fixed price for five years, medical/educational/interest rates set once a year, car makers told to either restructure unions and management or fail, jail for both political and CEO's that were a prt of this failure and theft, no oil bought from anywhere outside of north America, and the most terrible asction a third party of Americans destroying the happy two party hand holding government we now have. Sat 21 Feb 2009 16:09:01 GMT+1 bere54 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=96#comment93 93, british-ish -I fully support using words appropriately instead of wasting them (and I appreciate Dr. Johnson's story, which I've heard before and chuckle over each time), but I still think "surprise" is way too mild for what one should feel when public employees, or anyone else, reward themselves for bad behavior, or mediocre job performance as seems the case with the FSA. "Astonished" would be more fitting.Something that's been driving me crazy (is that wasting words?) lately is use of the word "hate" for criticism, legitimate or otherwise, i.e., if you criticize or disagree with someone you are accused of "hating on" them. "Hate" is a very strong word and rarely appropriate.That said, I am way past surprise or even astonishment at many nefarious behaviors taking place lately. I am in fact outraged. Thu 19 Feb 2009 22:13:07 GMT+1 british-ish http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=95#comment92 89 bere54 wrote:Ed, that article says the timing of the raising of incentives and salaries at your FSA will cause "surprise." You British are so understated. Don't you have shock and outrage over there?Good heavens no. Only in the tabloids when it comes to 13 yr old boys becoming fathers.We may get a little miffed every now and then or even put out, and in extreme cases even taken aback somewhat, but something really, really bad has got to happen before we get as far as 'shock', let alone 'outrage' ;-)(I think Gaza got as far as 'upset' and even 'anger', and very nearly got to 'outrage'.)(But Ed lives in Scotland. The Celts, you know, can be a bit excitable. It's why the Romans built that wall, just in case it spread.)It's a matter of still trying to use words for what they really mean instead of wasting them. Reminds me of the Dr Johnson story: man finds his best friend in bed with his wife; "Sir," he says, "I am surprised!" "No," his friend replies from the bed, " I am surprised, you are astonished!" Thu 19 Feb 2009 20:56:21 GMT+1 JohnyHawx http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=94#comment91 Justin said that he was glad that America spent the money. I would to be glad too if the money we spent was ours. As a conservitive I am glad that Obama won the election. He at least will not discredit austrian economics like Mccain would of by mixing it with socalism. Obama Print Print Print. If a conservitive buy gold silver and a gun. If a liberal keep your dollars and sterling and wait for big government to save you. The problem is they wont save you . In the end they will destroy you with there good intentions. One of these days our spending will cath up with us. I believe quite soon. YouTube Peter Schiff. Thu 19 Feb 2009 19:51:36 GMT+1 happylaze http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=93#comment90 Eddid you see how that Stanford managed to disappear.Because unlike lowly pot heads no one thinks to arrest these frauds.FSA fleecing scandalous acan't think of a word beginning with a to add there. Thu 19 Feb 2009 18:26:03 GMT+1 happylaze http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=92#comment89 88 lol viva la evolution Thu 19 Feb 2009 18:22:05 GMT+1 bere54 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=91#comment88 Ed, that article says the timing of the raising of incentives and salaries at your FSA will cause "surprise." You British are so understated. Don't you have shock and outrage over there? Thu 19 Feb 2009 18:14:48 GMT+1 Ed Iglehart http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=90#comment87 Happy,It's even more ridiculous over here. The FSA (our half-baked version of a regulator) are awarding themselves bonuses!, while the regulees drop like flies....You've gotta laugh Thu 19 Feb 2009 16:35:23 GMT+1 happylaze http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=89#comment86 We might be in for a rough year, but free fall?If those with some money don't start spending it we will be. but at least the mattresses will be thicker if we manage to land on one. Thu 19 Feb 2009 15:45:50 GMT+1 happylaze http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=88#comment85 66 I think I will be the one telling MA " told you so" lolback when I was the crazy guy saying that america is going to fall apart real soon. lol.But no it was just them euro's that would screw up. America America I think it included pulling the rest down with em.As I drive around in some new trebant. lolseriously I am glad to see the fallibility of the US being discussed by MA. A very positive direction.but you see the stuff Ed gives us is the real future.Not nice either. Thu 19 Feb 2009 15:43:21 GMT+1 happylaze http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=87#comment84 64 temp EdI really think those sec people should be left without any money. If I built railings as crap as they investigate I guarantee someone would come chasing the money I made doing the job at least. They did not do their jobs so they should be forced to pay the money back. Even if it leaves them and their families in the streets. But then I seem to be harsh on highly paid people that do not deserve the pay they got. Thu 19 Feb 2009 15:37:39 GMT+1 happylaze http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=86#comment83 MA."Good thing they are no longer running this country, squeal as they might about who is. They had their turn and wrecked the economy, now it's the Democrat's turn."Well said Thu 19 Feb 2009 15:17:15 GMT+1 freeclench http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=85#comment82 On the whole, Republicans are stupider.http://nationsreportcard.gov/math_2007/m0005.aspTheir attitude toward education takes its toll.-FreeClench Thu 19 Feb 2009 14:56:26 GMT+1 Ed Iglehart http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=84#comment81 O Canada!Cheers to all y'all Canucks, eh? Thu 19 Feb 2009 12:47:30 GMT+1 MarcusAureliusII http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=83#comment80 69#71"1. We are not on the edge of depression. not even close. The stimulus package is too small and has too much in tax cuts for folks like, well, me. But most economic predictions show an up tick to growth in 6 months. Common folks will seeit in 9. It's ugly but we are seeing some leading edge indicators pulling up."You fool. Most economists said a year ago that the economy of the US and the world were in good condition. Go back and look at their ludicrous predictions. What do they have to do to convince you that they were and remain clueless. If you have an MBA, tear it up. Whatever you learned is worthless. It not only doesn't pan out in practice, it doesn't even make logical sense. The world's one time not so long ago greatest economic guru, Alan Greenspan who learned the same theories you did if you went to business school testified before Congress just a couple of months ago "there's something about markets I don't understand." Well that's an understatement. And that lack of knowledge helped lead to policies that bankrupted the US and the world. I wish I thought you and the economists who see the world through rose colored glasses were right but when you take them off, it looks very bleak in the hard cold light of facts. "2. Available credit has nothing to do with the velocity of money. M and P are the variables. M is contracting, P is falling. Doh! Expanding M is a good idea. Expanding M0 is not. The government is expanding M through quantitative easing. They are not expanding M0. the price equation is different for M0 than for M0-3. Those treasury guys get this"Doh....P is falling because M is contracting. M is contracting because the ability to convert assets such as stock and houses into cash have dried up. That is why there is no credit, because M is falling and the rate of falling is accelerating because as each level of the gambling inverted pyramid gives way, the one above it which falls next is even larger. The money supply is a far more encompassing notion than your classic textbook says, probably the same one I read (Samuelson.) It is people's net worth, the money they think they can get if they liquidate all of their assets. This is what their credit rating is in part based on. One of those assets are the houses that were worth nearly twice as much two years ago as they are today. Another is the expectation that all of those CDSs and Colateralized debt obligations will pay off. The net present value of them has shrunk to zero. Over 65 trillion dollars of booked assets up in smoke."2. No banks other than those purchased to date are bankrupt. that said they arenot lending. The banks that are not requesting aid in the US and are still lending, to date, are the Europeans. You desire us all to bank with Europeans as you drive the US banks under?"Their bad news just hasn't been made public yet. One reason is that they will try to hide it as long as they can to avoid a run on their deposits by those whose money they hold and they can't pay back. While American banks typically gambled ten times their assets in financial markets and lost, in European banks it was 20 to 30 times their assets. Another is that many of them have assets which haven't exploded yet because their obligations haven't gone into default but inevitably will. Don't kid yourself, no part of this worldwide house of financial cards will be left standing when it's over."3. Under your policy all variable interest rates will rise. Period. inflation does that. You want to pay debt with cheap devalued dollars. Only works for fixed rate loans. Who holds those? The middle class and up. Variable rates, credit cards being the most variable, will skyrocket to provide a spread for the lender. For all. Or the banks will say 'Hey I'llloan this and expect a mega loss and still be in business in 12 months. That works'. They are not that dumb. And as no one can get a fixed rate loan at less than 1000% interest (like Zimbabwe, but not as bad) , because of the currency devaluation, who will buy your doublewide? No one, because uncertainty precludes it. So the purchasing power of your main asset depreciates and you as a person are worth less."Not true if the rate of inflation is high but controlled. About 20 to 25 percent inflation would be good. Remember the rule of 72. At that rate, the currency would be reduced by 75% in 6 years. At the rate things are going now, the depression might never end. Every day bring worse news than the day before."4. China and Europe currently fund our deficit. Devalue the dollar, make the pesky foreigners expect a negative return and they will withdraw. The $ collapses, we suffer."We will suffer no matter what happens. Don't you get it? The government has spent hundreds of billions more every year since Bush took office than it took in. A 5 or 6 trillion dollar debt has ballooned to 10 trillion. Under Reagan it went from 1 to 4. At least we had the end of the cold war to show for that during Reagan's term in office. What have we got to show for this last round? Lots of empty forclosed homes and a hangover from an 8 year party the wealthy enjoyed during the Bush years. Towards the end of the Clinton administration we were actually paying down the federal debt. Let China withdraw. They will crash the US economy and their own with it. They will cut off their nose to spite their face and they know it. If the US economy does not recover, China will face violent revolution. So will many other countries that depend directly or indirectly on export to the US including people we don't even like or do business with. Iran and Venezuela for example."Marcus, your policies are those of Zimbabwe. You can't just read wiki on monetarism and be an expert on this stuff. It's like that chimp in the news reading Shakespeare."Wrong as usual 69. Zimbabwe went broke because it took the one means of production of wealth it had, farms and stole it from those who knew how to run it and gave it to those who didn't. What I am saying is that right now that is happening all across America not by appropriating property the way Zimbabwe did but by starving businesses of credit they need to operate. Sheesh what cave do you live in? The cure is to make credit available again but the failed banking system can't on its own and the government cannot generate money through taxes because nobody can afford to pay them. The only choice left is to print it. The fear of inflation has a lot of people convinced that it cannot be controlled, that it must be killed off at all costs. Wrong. That was Greenspan's philosophy and it failed. In fact in 1992, it cost President Bush re-election as it delayed recovery of "the economy stupid.""If it were that simple, Mugabe would be an economic genius. And there would never be a recession. Anywhere. Money for all. Someone else pays."You are hopeless."It's been tried. You are as good as a Top gear challenge on this. It starts with 'I mean, how hard could it be' and ends with 'That's not gone well'."Yes it's been tried and it worked. That's how the great depression ended. Read the facts. When I was young in the 1950s, people who lived through the depression would often say "I remember when a loaf of bread was a nickel...but then who had a nickel?" By the 1950s, just 25 years later, bread cost about 39 cents or 8 times as much and the economy had been in recovery for some time. Understanding that it was government spending on the war with money it didn't have and then printing it to wipe out all the debt it had incurred in war bonds to pay for it was what got the economy going again, not the war itself.Until massive amount of new money, not the two trillion that has just been approved but five to fifteen, the best we can hope for is stagnation and I think even that is a long way down the road. BTW, McCain and the Republicans see it your way and that would have been even worse. Good thing they are no longer running this country, squeal as they might about who is. They had their turn and wrecked the economy, now it's the Democrat's turn. Thu 19 Feb 2009 12:08:58 GMT+1 Ed Iglehart http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=82#comment79 Via (78), "But I see no reason why we're not heading in the right direction."I envy your optimism. For one reason, say hello to the 219,000 extra souls added this day. Try and break the news to them that they cannot expect to live as 'well' as you and I have....Still want to see reasons why we're heading in the wrong direction? Momentum is a terrible thing, especially when we're already well into overshoot.Eat, drink, and be merryedP.S. The classic study Thu 19 Feb 2009 12:03:23 GMT+1 Ed Iglehart http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=81#comment78 Sam, "But most economic predictions show an up tick to growth in 6 months. Common folks will seeit in 9. It's ugly but we are seeing some leading edge indicators pulling up."And, from my link (which I admit only having read halfway through so far...)"Perhaps you’ve noticed this too, there is a sort of refrain here: people who try to predict big historical shifts always turn to be off by about half a decade. Unsuccessful predictions, on the other hand are always spot on as far as timing: the world as we know it failed to end precisely at midnight on January 1, 2000. Perhaps there is a physical principal involved: information spreads at the speed of light, while ignorance is instantaneous at all points in the known universe. So please make a mental note: whenever it seems to you that I am making a specific prediction as to when I think something is likely to happen, just silently add “plus or minus half a decade.”";-)ed Thu 19 Feb 2009 11:50:37 GMT+1 Via-Media http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=80#comment77 62 Temporarily Ed,Very frightening. But, although I am not a professional economist, I do not think that the current hard times will end up crashing quite that far.1.) though good reading, I see no indication that your source is anything but a purveyor of doom. We've overextended ourselves financially w. a triple-whammy of military adventurism and unwise domestic lending practices. But how do you get from this a. to the b. of return of the 18th Century?2.) I certainly agree that we need to deal w. the crisis of overpopulation and environmental degradation. But I see no reason why we're not heading in the right direction. The locavore movement, the beginnings of a shift away from the pretroleum economy, sudden personal fiscal responsibility- all these are good signs.3.) I do believe that despite the woes of the auto and housing sectors, our economy is still fundamentally strong. Yes, the model needs to evolve away from consumerism, but I don't think we're at crisis point yet. We might be in for a rough year, but free fall?All the warnings of that article should be taken seriously, but as a warning of what could happen- 50, 100 years from now. We've started addressing the issues, and this work will accelerate. Speaking as one of the certain casualties of such a predicted collapse of civilization- although I've camped and thrived in the outdoors all my life, and I'm a good shot and know a martial art, I'm a chronic asthmatic and won't kid myself- I do certainly hope and pray that this is wrong. Thu 19 Feb 2009 10:42:42 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=79#comment76 ref #67You seem to want to blame everything on the republicans instead of blaming all parties.The two most culpable people after Bush are still in govt collecting fat salaries: Barney Frank and Chris Dodd. Why are they getting a free ride, they are as guilty as any corporate head called to testify.You are wrong alot of the pork does no good and I stand by the cooment that bailing out the car manufacturers and the parasitic unions does not help the country.A controlled bankrupcy would, an added benefit would be the union heads would work for a living. Thu 19 Feb 2009 10:02:29 GMT+1 Lee Roy Sanders, Jr. http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=78#comment75 Economics as a sea is filled with sharks. Credit Card issuing Banks are the criminals abusing debt interest charges. This criminal is the culprit and the creator of the destruction of society. It chokes the economic ability of the worlds citizens to use their income to better their world. This is legalized theft and the hidden reason of the worlds economic ruin. Thu 19 Feb 2009 07:32:32 GMT+1 publiusdetroit http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=77#comment74 Ref 71 SamTyler1969But most economic predictions show an up tick to growth in 6 months. Common folks will seeit in 9. It's ugly but we are seeing some leading edge indicators pulling up.Please do not take me wrong. I always respect your opinions and intelect.Are these predictors using the data from the Federal Reserve that mis-read the current unemployment estimates back in November?Things move fast when the house of cards collapse. I do not see the government bailing out the automobile industry. I know the negotiation process. Go in with a high figure, and settle lower. I just do not see the auto Execs being bright enough to know what they really need to do for an effective recovery.At least GM and Chrysler. Especially, GM. Thu 19 Feb 2009 05:10:17 GMT+1 timewaitsfornoman http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=76#comment73 72 publiusdetroitI read about half and will go back to give it my full attention. What I read was really interesting. We have a place in the country so am familiar with "roughing it." Plus, I already own several pairs of gardening gloves. Thu 19 Feb 2009 04:55:15 GMT+1 allmymarbles http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=75#comment72 According to NBC the total package when all is said and done will amount to 2.3 trillion dollars. That amounts to $7,500 per man, woman and child. If they had just given us the money we would have known what to do with it. The savings would have shored up the banks, the spending would have aided retailers, most of the forclosures would not be forclosures, etc. All of this would have saved jobs. And, just think, no corruption, no administration expenses, and no pork! Thu 19 Feb 2009 04:45:10 GMT+1 publiusdetroit http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=73#comment71 Has anyone else read Ed's link from Ref 62? Thu 19 Feb 2009 03:57:35 GMT+1 SamTyler1969 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=72#comment70 #63Marcus,Very verbose. Lets go point by point.1. We are not on the edge of depression. not even close. The stimulus package is too small and has too much in tax cuts for folks like, well, me. But most economic predictions show an up tick to growth in 6 months. Common folks will seeit in 9. It's ugly but we are seeing some leading edge indicators pulling up. 2. Available credit has nothing to do with the velocity of money. M and P are the variables. M is contracting, P is falling. Doh! Expanding M is a good idea. Expanding M0 is not. The government is expanding M through quantitative easing. They are not expanding M0. the price equation is different for M0 than for M0-3. Those treasury guys get this2. No banks other than those purchased to date are bankrupt. that said they arenot lending. The banks that are not requesting aid in the US and are still lending, to date, are the Europeans. You desire us all to bank with Europeans as you drive the US banks under?3. Under your policy all variable interest rates will rise. Period. inflation does that. You want to pay debt with cheap devalued dollars. Only works for fixed rate loans. Who holds those? The middle class and up. Variable rates, credit cards being the most variable, will skyrocket to provide a spread for the lender. For all. Or the banks will say 'Hey I'llloan this and expect a mega loss and still be in business in 12 months. That works'. They are not that dumb. And as no one can get a fixed rate loan at less than 1000% interest (like Zimbabwe, but not as bad) , because of the currency devaluation, who will buy your doublewide? No one, because uncertainty precludes it. So the purchasing power of your main asset depreciates and you as a person are worth less. 4. China and Europe currently fund our deficit. Devalue the dollar, make the pesky foreigners expect a negative return and they will withdraw. The $ collapses, we suffer.Marcus, your policies are those of Zimbabwe. You can't just read wiki on monetarism and be an expert on this stuff. It's like that chimp in the news reading Shakespeare. If it were that simple, Mugabe would be an economic genius. And there would never be a recession. Anywhere. Money for all. Someone else pays.It's been tried. You are as good as a Top gear challenge on this. It starts with 'I mean, how hard could it be' and ends with 'That's not gone well'.When it get's built, make sure you are on the B ark. You'll enjoy the company. Really. happy Sam Thu 19 Feb 2009 03:54:48 GMT+1 publiusdetroit http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=71#comment69 Ref 62 Temporarily Ed IglehartWorth the effort.In 2004 we had a massive power outage throughout the Northeast U.S. that lasted some 60 hours. I warned friends and neighbors that large-scale, social unrest would begin if we did not get power back within 72 hours. I also had them draw water and store it in whatever clean pots and pans they had available well before the water system failed. (It did fail within 24 hours) I showed them how to flush a toilet with a bucket of second-use water. (Dishwater, etc.)I am an avid outdoorsman well supplied with 3 types of cookstoves, an excellent water-filtration devise, and various lighting. I also had a well-stocked larder of canned and dried foods. I lived well.After 48 hours, the "advance units" of social disorder raised their opportunistic heads (also in my prediction). Drug-addicts and other predator opportunists began testing the defenses of closed businesses and unprotected residents. Invasive incidents were on the rise. Police sirens were almost continuous, day and night.Fortunately, the power came back on just a couple hours before sunset on the third day. I am absolutely certain if the lights did not go on that night, mass looting and civil disobedience would have made Detroit and suburbs look like the 1967 riots revisited.I should also note that supermarket shelves throughout the metro-area were bare of batteries, charcoal, butane, bottled water, and most foodstuffs withing 24 hours. Thu 19 Feb 2009 03:20:53 GMT+1 bere54 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=70#comment68 65, 66, publius -My nephew is back in North Carolina with his parents and collecting unemployment from Wyoming where he last worked, as a chef at a resort. Wyoming sends him debit cards. I remember having to go stand in a long line every two weeks to sign for my unemployment checks in D.C. in 1981, first monstrously pregnant and then carrying an infant in a Snugli. My son's first trip out of the house (he was born at home) was to the unemployment office. Some things do change for the better.If we have a new currency, maybe we can have one that doesn't say "In God We Trust." That would be another change for the better. Thu 19 Feb 2009 02:37:13 GMT+1 gunsandreligion http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=69#comment67 64, I love it!!! But, the SEC people should get theprize of the year from the Professional BS'ers ofAmerica Society. Thu 19 Feb 2009 02:24:25 GMT+1 freeclench http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=68#comment66 36. At 5:34pm on 18 Feb 2009, MagicKirin wrote:Why are you blaming the Republicans for wanting the pork out of the bill. I don't want to pay for frizzbee golf course or Nancy Pelosi's current junket to Italy.Why should the auto industry and fat labor pensions be bailed out?There is a lot of waste that is going to special interest on this bill.That's nonsense.There is no way of feeding money into the economy that cannot be attacked as special interest for someone. It is an abuse of the term.The term is meant to identify the problem that arises when special interests dictate the direction of public policy. But lobbyists did not craft the stimulus bill.Pork is parochial Bridge-To-Forever-style spending which senators require be written into a bill in order to give it their support. It is spending that benefits the senator's state at the expense of the rest of the union.But that does not describe the spending of this bill: this bill was specifically designed to spend money on the economy.The Republicans have used these hot-button terms, pork and special interest, without regard for their meaning, to deliberately mischaracterize the stimulus bill in an attempt to hurt Democrats. It's insulting to the intelligence, and their obstructionism betrays a willingness to actively harm the American people to serve their agenda.#46, Chicoan,Here, right after 9/11 happened, it was not safe to be called a democrat. People were beaten and houses burned, and the arsonists were egged on and even justified by conservative talk radio hosts and their listeners, some of whom should have been prosecuted for inciting bodily harm.I wasn't aware that kind of thing was going on. Scandalous.-FreeClench Thu 19 Feb 2009 02:09:40 GMT+1 publiusdetroit http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=67#comment65 Ref 63 MarcusAureliusIII think you are going to be the one who says, "I told you so."Another thing that we are likely to see is a new currency. That is a devise governments resort to when the economy is spinning out of control in the death spiral. A smoke and mirrors devise, at that. Thu 19 Feb 2009 02:08:47 GMT+1 publiusdetroit http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=66#comment64 Ref 58 bere54Bread and soup is my favorite meal. Will it be lobster bisque?Mine, too. Maybe we should move to Maine. They might serve lobster bisque in their Soup Kitchens.I remember the meals we served to the homeless at the church where I once was a member. I hope there will be such good meals served up by such caring people available for the unemployed if my prediction comes true.The unemployment lines of 1974 keep flashing in my mind. I remember them circling the Michigan Employment Security building twice. My son is currently unemployed. The State issues unemployment checks by telephone now. Probably better. There was social unrest brewing in those long lines. Thu 19 Feb 2009 01:57:18 GMT+1 Ed Iglehart http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=65#comment63 And then...Somebody twigged;-)ed Thu 19 Feb 2009 01:28:13 GMT+1 MarcusAureliusII http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=64#comment62 gunsandreligion #24"18, MAII, since about half of our debt is held by foreigners, the course of action that you suggest will undoubtedlyresult in their dumping the dollar, resultingin hyperinflation, which destroys entiresocieties."No, it was the ludicrous policies of the recent past where money was loaned to people who couldn't possibly pay it back to buy things they couldn't afford, the allowing banks and other financial institutions to gamble ten to twenty times as much money as they had on anything that looked good, the pyramid scheme of Credit Default Swaps based on fraudulent ratings of securities, and all the rest of the financial mismanagement that destroys societies. Hyperinflation is only one possible consequence. The flip side is depression which is where we are headed now. Don't worry about the economy overheating just yet, it's in a deep freeze entering an ice age. What do you think is worse, getting higher wages to pay higher prices and watching China lose 1.8 trillion dollars or a depression where nobody can afford to pay cheap prices we have now because everyone is out of work and China goes into social chaos because its economy starts to implode? Don't put the cart before the horse. The damage has already been done. What we are left with is how to clean up the ashes now that the house had already burned down."As an example, the Allies in WWII considereddumping huge sums of forged Germancurrency on Nazi-occupied Europe, butrefrained, either because they consideredit "immoral," or because they consideredthe possibility that the Germans mightretaliate in kind. So, they went back todropping bombs."As America's currency is devalued through inflation, it will drop against other currencies. Then when their economies are impacted, their currencies will fall too either because they have no economy left being priced out of the US market or they start printing more of their own currency and doing the same thing. Why haven't they already? Because they can't. Only America has the power to start an inflationary cycle of this type. BTW, if nobody was willing to lend money to the US government, it might learn that it has to start living within its means. Once the currency stabalizes at a new low value about 66% to 80% depreciated against existing debt, that will be paid off and we will become accostomed to a new level of norms for prices and salaries. We've done this many times in the past, only not quite so drastically or quickly. It wasn't WWII which brought about an end to the great depression, it was massive government spending to fund it with money it didn't have. The result was inflation later on.69#19Wrong as usual. The velocity of money has slowed to a trickle. That's what no available credit means. People who would ordinarily be able to buy a house or a car by borrowing money and turn it over can't. Businesses are in the same predicament. The money is frozen in static places like banks who won't lend it but just sit on it and with people too scared to borrow and spend because they are afraid they will lose their jobs and then their homes. Go back to school or wherever you learned about money and get your tuition refunded. "While those fixed interest rate loans would be paid off at a much lower rate, benefitting the middle classes who can get such loans on cars and houses, the assets the purchased with them would massively devalue."No, interest rates would rise due to expectations that money will continue to be worth increasingly less and less. But existing loans would be paid off with cheap easy to obtain dollars. That's the whole point. Shift the price paradigm to where the current dollar denominated debt is much smaller by comparison to where it is in real dollars now."Banks would go bust as their balance sheets become further burdened with toxic assets (reducing the velocity of money) or simply stop lending. The credit that would be available would be variable and at extreme rates. Anyone with a credit card balance would find themselves bankrupt. T-Bills would be valueless and the Chinese would stop funding our government. Massive lay offs, blood in the streets."The banks are already bankrupt. What cave are you living in? That's what happens when you badly mismanage a business under capitalism the way the entire financial industry was, you are supposed to go bankrupt. Then when those banks are gone, new banks will form without the burden of worthless debt on their books. Hopefully shareholders, boards of directors, government, will have learned a lesson, the same lesson they learned in the 1920s and 1930s but forgot by the 1980s. Dumb economists, dumb economists, dumb economists. Business schools should close up shop for having taught incompetently. Ironically, those "toxic" assets, the repossessed houses would gain in value as the economy comes back to life. That's what the government is hoping will happen now but the quantities of money it has committed to pour in so far isn't nearly enough and short of printing money it has no way to pay for it because it is also bankrupt or had you forgotten that small point?Credit card rates and limits like all credit would depend on credit worthiness and would rise due to inflation. The creditor's problem will be to keep up with inflation but still remain competitive. The only class of people who will have to be taken special care of is those living on fixed incomes like annuities under a certain income level which will rise as inflation erodes their buying power. The rich will get a lot poorer unless they have services of real value to sell, something many of them never had. T-bills are short to mid term investments. Not a good idea. Get out now. T-bonds held now will be a disaster. Stick to T-notes that are very short term. You will get zero effective interest but as the finance "experts" are saying, it's no longer return on investment but return OF investment that is the current goal. There will be anguish in China no matter what happens. If China gets back 400 billion in real money on 1.8 trillion of loans to the US government, tough luck. It's their own fault for funding an irresponsible government, the US government in the first place. But if the US does not come out of depression, there really could be blood in the streets of China when they go back to starving to death and their hopes for prosperity are dashed. Nobody in America or Europe will buy cheap shoes or LCD TV sets when they are worried about losing their jobs and homes. Thu 19 Feb 2009 01:26:32 GMT+1 Ed Iglehart http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=63#comment61 Essential reading Worth the effort.Peace and resilienceed Thu 19 Feb 2009 01:15:08 GMT+1 happylaze http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=62#comment60 Oh Canada Oh Canada. Thu 19 Feb 2009 01:06:32 GMT+1 happylaze http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=61#comment59 lol 56 bere I told my parents the same thing. strange they thought the same.54 PubAgreed about the unemployment.It may happen.I have to say I was a little amused at the talk of a merger with Fiat. Now we are going to be just as I joked about earlier. Driving Italian cars like in the USSR.(they were just older ,I hope) Like I hope they don't just start making moskovitches. Thu 19 Feb 2009 01:06:09 GMT+1 publiusdetroit http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=60#comment58 Ref 55 MagicKirinAt the same time the head of the Postal Service got a six figure raise.Why do you think many of us are skeptical of the stimulus.And the government is going to help run the automobile and banking businesses. All I can say is:"O, Canada!My home and native land!..." Wed 18 Feb 2009 23:38:14 GMT+1 bere54 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=59#comment57 54, publius -Bread and soup is my favorite meal. Will it be lobster bisque? You're not really serious, are you? 25% unemployment? Does this mean my kids will have to come live with me again? I could deal with that. But they couldn't. Wed 18 Feb 2009 23:35:16 GMT+1 publiusdetroit http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=58#comment56 Ref 34 timewaitsfornomanCanada now has the loonie, the toonie, and the WOWZOONIE!!Do you think Tim's might offer one of those as a prize in the next "R-R-R-Roll up the R-R-R-rim" promotion?It will be difficult to mix that in with my pocket change to get it back over the border.You can almost hear the pick-up line some Texan will be using in a Calgary bar. "Hey, baby. You wanna come to my place and see my WOWZOONIE!!? Wed 18 Feb 2009 23:23:21 GMT+1 bere54 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=57#comment55 34, timewaits - Yes, I did see the post, and will look into it. Thanks! My son advised me to buy gold over three years ago and I didn't listen to him because he knows (I thought) nothing about economics or finance (and neither do I). Oh well. Wed 18 Feb 2009 23:09:02 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=56#comment54 Here is how the congress priortizes spending.They may have to cut delevery one day.At the same time the head of the Postal Service got a six figure raise.Why do you think many of us are skeptical of the stimulus. Wed 18 Feb 2009 22:45:04 GMT+1 publiusdetroit http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=55#comment53 Gm and Chrysler are at the table for a serving of $93 billion Washington salad.My bets are on 25% unemployment by June.Bread and Soup, anyone? Just get in line. Wed 18 Feb 2009 22:39:56 GMT+1 timewaitsfornoman http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=54#comment52 ukwales"marry a Canadian"Is this the famous Welsh humour I have heard so much about, coming out? Wed 18 Feb 2009 22:36:17 GMT+1 timewaitsfornoman http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=53#comment51 gunsandreligion"My story has a happy ending"I'm glad to hear that. And I promise not to tell. Wed 18 Feb 2009 22:33:38 GMT+1 David Cunard http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=52#comment50 #25. gunsandreligion: "there is some evidence emerging that diet can delay or prevent the onset of dementia, as presented here and elsewhere."The article suggests that the "Mediterranean-style cuisine may help ward off mild cognitive impairment" and there is no proof that it does. In any case, mild cognitive impairment is not usually considered "borderline dementia" but rather a slightly impaired memory.#27. tigermilkboy: "diabetes is made more managable not controlable."That's not true - it can be controlled by both diet and medication. There is no medication which can do the same for dementia. There are some, such as Aricept, which may help the early stages, but nothing for more advanced cases."I say the money to diabetes research is needed more than dementia-which typically aflicts people much later in life."Dementia can affect 30 and 40 year olds as well as those over 60. The costs of care runs into the billions and it is forecast that by 2050 the number of Alzheimer's sufferers will increase by 350% - and that doesn't include other forms of dementia such as Vascular Dementia and Lewy Body Syndrome. In Britain alone the costs are staggering, around L17 Billion a year.Although those "much later in life" may be afflicted, why shouldn't they be helped as much as cancer sufferers or diabetics? Dementia is the orphan of medicine and despite the progress in recent years, research is woefully underfunded. Not everything has to be done for "our children" - those who have worked a lifetime deserve just as much care and thought as those at the beginning of their journey on earth. Wed 18 Feb 2009 21:54:44 GMT+1 Al from BR http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=51#comment49 Also remember that now the arguement over whether the stimulus should pass is moot, we now have to make that 1,000 page mess of a bill that Congress passed work, and that will be no small feat--after we borrow the money from China of course. Wed 18 Feb 2009 21:27:52 GMT+1 Al from BR http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=50#comment48 17I was being cynical when I posted #13, and yes I do hope the package works to benefit the economy, but Im no fool. My doubts are well founded given the record of the Feds. And might I add that we still have not gotten those 100 year levees the Feds promised us after the disasterous responce to Katrina, though they did close MRGO and build those flood gates at the entrances to the canals.So forgive me if Im skeptical and hold a higher regard for my state and local government; thats Federalism for ya. Wed 18 Feb 2009 21:22:11 GMT+1 hms_shannon http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=48#comment47 34 timewaitsfornoman."marry a Canadian"Hey Timewaits, You are Canadian & it seems you have an interest in buying gold.Whats a nice gal like you doing on a blogg like this.I do so love you timewaits... Wed 18 Feb 2009 21:17:52 GMT+1 gunsandreligion http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=47#comment46 #45, timewaits, I definitely think that anywhereexcept perhaps Manhattan is more mellow thanSilly Valley. I'm afraid that your infomercial willhave to compete with "world reknown real estateexperts" (who recently resigned as waiters inrestaurants) who are selling seminars in how tobuy foreclosures (as if anybody needed adviceon how to do that.)A big wave is coming. But, if you know whichway it is coming from, you can surf that wave.That's the perspective that I take on it.My story has a happy ending. Just don't tellSam, or he'll want to know what massageparlor I frequent, and the price will go up. Wed 18 Feb 2009 21:08:45 GMT+1 Chicoan http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=46#comment45 #28 FreeClenchThat the Republicans have shown contempt for the American public is hard to argue with, and I believe this contempt goes back at least as far as Newt's contract with America.In and around my little progressive oasis in the conservative wasteland of North California this contempt has been shown by not only the party itself, but by rank and file voters. Here, right after 9/11 happened, it was not safe to be called a democrat. People were beaten and houses burned, and the arsonists were egged on and even justified by conservative talk radio hosts and their listeners, some of whom should have been prosecuted for inciting bodily harm. That is why I think the Republican's reaction to terrorist threats plays right into terrorist hands: why bother to blow us up if we're going to do it to ourselves? Wed 18 Feb 2009 20:54:57 GMT+1 timewaitsfornoman http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=45#comment44 42 gunsandreligion"only to see my personal life destroyed while the CEO of the company rewards himself with bonuses and kicks the company founders out on the street, even though they have small children."Oh I don't think I want to know any more of the story. I could be fooling myself but I consider us to be a lot more mellow up here. Perhaps it's the cold weather, I don't know.As for your Florida real estate, my son has just returned from Miami with fresh news from the southern front. Waiters waving menus with slashed prices on Collins Ave, extolling patrons to enter their establishment! A la Burlesque Shows. Stores where they were the only shoppers 70% off and an additional 10% at the cash. They might as well have asked people to come help themselves. And this mid February prime Snowbird (as we are called) weather. That is not happening to us yet. It is as if we are witnessing the water being sucked out pre-Tsunami. Still standing on dry land. When is the wave coming and how big will it be?My plan was for you to be astounded by my brilliance when I asked about your Golden State. Well... as they say, so much for that plan. Wed 18 Feb 2009 20:42:35 GMT+1 aquarizonagal http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=44#comment43 To PubliusdetroitI am leaving a comment for you on the prior thread. I hope you will see it. Wed 18 Feb 2009 20:07:30 GMT+1 Ed Iglehart http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=43#comment42 Racist? Maybe. Good taste? Definitely not.Pityed Wed 18 Feb 2009 19:24:48 GMT+1 gunsandreligion http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=42#comment41 39, timewaits, I live in the one and only Golden State,California. I actually could go pan for gold, butmy luck is typically bad, so I choose not tosubsidize the local economy and furtherdegrade the environment by driving aroundand producing more CO2.Or, I could go to an Indian casino and lose money, thereby brightening the eager youngfaces of some indigenous family.Both alternatives are better than trying whatI have done in the past, which is to workfor Venture funded startups, only to seemy personal life destroyed while the CEOof the company rewards himself with bonusesand kicks the company founders out onthe street, even though they have small children.However, I do happen to own some worthless(er, ah, extremely valuable) real estate inFlorida, perhaps we could arrange a trade?My understanding is that you guys up northfly south for the winter, perhaps you need tomeet some new mosquito friends while yousoak up some sunshine? Wed 18 Feb 2009 18:52:53 GMT+1 Ed Iglehart http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=41#comment40 Bere, As you will have noted, such html formatting is not carried forward via "copy and paste" Don't be discouraged and just try a simple <b>emboldment</b> or <i>italic emphasis</i> Just to get your hand in....;-)Temporarily Jacks Forge Wed 18 Feb 2009 18:37:59 GMT+1 Jeebers76 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=40#comment39 Mr Webb,I don't think this spending bill is just to fix the economy. I think it's to fix some of the horrible mistakes Bush Jr (and Sr, for that matter) made. That's why the funding for medical research.At least, that's my best guess. I can't read minds, I just watch closely. Wed 18 Feb 2009 18:36:13 GMT+1 timewaitsfornoman http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=39#comment38 gunsandreligionThey offer 100-kg Canadian gold coins at $3m each where you live? But only late night you say? Refresh my memory - where do you live? That must be some Golden State! Wed 18 Feb 2009 18:05:50 GMT+1 gunsandreligion http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=38#comment37 32, timewaits, I believe that I've seen your adson late-night TV. Wed 18 Feb 2009 17:46:51 GMT+1 timewaitsfornoman http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=37#comment36 35 gunsandreligionActually I was talking to bere54, but you may take my advice if you wish.Just because the country of Canada has absolutely fabulous gold, does not mean I have much of it. Certainly none on offer in the link!! (But I am working on commission so thought I would push the product here. Any takers?) Wed 18 Feb 2009 17:35:21 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=36#comment35 ref #28Are you Derrick Jackson of the Boston Globe? Why are you blaming the Republicans for wanting the pork out of the bill. I don't want to pay for frizzbee golf course or Nancy Pelosi's current junket to Italy.Why should the auto industry and fat labor pensions be bailed out?There is a lot of waste that is going to special interest on this bill. Wed 18 Feb 2009 17:34:43 GMT+1 gunsandreligion http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=35#comment34 timewaits, like Paris Hilton, you Canadians areflaunting it because you have it.As far as marrying goes, any woman that I getinvolved with has to be either extremely pooror extremely wealthy, so that money is notan issue. Wed 18 Feb 2009 17:15:26 GMT+1 timewaitsfornoman http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=34#comment33 bere54No stimulus package views from me. All I can offer is Buy Gold! or marry a Canadian who has lots!!Did you see my post to you re: Montreal Medical Clinic? Wed 18 Feb 2009 17:00:17 GMT+1 bere54 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=33#comment32 28, freeclench " And it is very odd that McCain criticized Obama for "acting the way we [Republicans] have for the past eight years." He says that's not change. "I can't stand McCain but at least he showed some honesty there (unless it was a slip of the tongue). I have listened with dropped jaw and elevated blood pressure as one Republican after another screams about the lack of bipartisanship when during their majority they made it clear that Democrats didn't exist in their world.[Ed: Notice that "very odd" is italicized in the original post, but when I copied and pasted it (I am tickled that at least I can do that much), it is no longer italicized, at least in the version I'm seeing here. I'm wondering if it will re-italicize when I post.] Wed 18 Feb 2009 16:54:07 GMT+1 bere54 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=32#comment31 I hope you guys (figure of speech, in case any are actually gals) know what you are talking about on here, because most of you sound much more coherent and rational on this issue than what I am hearing on the radio, and I'm trying to avoid the newspaper sites (which are often not very coherent either) because while scrolling I run across horrible things that I feel compelled to read (because they are there). I was awake half the night stressing over that terribly sad chimpanzee mauls woman-attacks policeman-is shot-runs off to die in his little bed story.So I'm hoping to learn all I need to know about this stimulus package from this blog. Don't let me down, please. Wed 18 Feb 2009 16:36:53 GMT+1 gunsandreligion http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=31#comment30 29, Ed, I agree. The economy will not bottom outuntil real estate prices do. But, we may be able to preventreal estate prices from overshooting on the downsideby some sort of stimulus package.It's going to be rough for a lot folks, no matter whatthe government does. Wed 18 Feb 2009 16:34:39 GMT+1 dennisjunior1 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=30#comment29 Justin:I am glad about the funding of health care in the stimulus bill...Since, Health Care in the United States needs lots of funding....~Dennis Junior~ Wed 18 Feb 2009 16:22:53 GMT+1 Ed Iglehart http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=29#comment28 G'nR, "A true stimulus would bea fast injection of liquidity into the systemto get the velocity of money up."Hasn't that been tried several times in the past year or so, with no effect beyond brief bounces on the way down?Meanwhile....;-)ed Wed 18 Feb 2009 16:17:11 GMT+1 freeclench http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=28#comment27 #16, saintDominick:Quite frankly, I am momre enraged by the GOP position on education funding than by their ambivalence towards healthcare and our crumbling infrastructure. Their cynicism and ideological bias are clearly apparent when they say that building new schools will not create jobs, and their Pinnochio attributes are apparent when they claim they did not have enough time to review the package, but produce a long list of items extracted from the bill that they consider "pork".True. And it is very odd that McCain criticized Obama for "acting the way we [Republicans] have for the past eight years." He says that's not change.Well, it's a change of party, anyway.As far as I can tell, there are two factions within the Republican party: the big business faction and the fundamentalist Christian faction.Education is an intersection of the two: it's benefitial to big business to strangle public education because it drives students into private schools; and the voucher system will effectively privatize education with a state subsidy. Uneducated workers become grist for the minimum wage mill.It benefits fundamentalists to strangle public education because they believe evolution is the work of the devil and (more cynically) because keeping true believers ignorant helps keep them true.What troubles me about the way the Republicans have behaved is the contempt they have shown to the American public. Americans aren't all geniuses -- I mean, most of us find television entertaining -- but this has been an insult to our intelligence.-FreeClench Wed 18 Feb 2009 16:16:36 GMT+1 mike http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=27#comment26 As an economist, I have a problem with the stimulus package too. However, I have to question the Republican motives and suggestions to a degree. Cutting taxes across the board like Republican's suggested, would have stimulated the economy to a degree. However, with tax rates so low already, I can't see this working. A typical family of two, earning around $60K per annum with a mortgage already pays no federal income tax and would recieve a rebate-especially if I do your taxes! Therefore cutting taxes more, would only mean raising them at a later date. This means either the Republicans hadn't thought about this future tax raise or President Obama and Democrats spotted the trap Republicans were neatly laying-convientently taxes would have have to come back up around 2012 elections and we would have the tax and spend Democrats arguement again.p.s. David_Cunard post #1, diabetes is made more managable not controlable. Diabetes sufferers are more susceptable to develop other health problems. The average life expectancy of a child with diabetes is considerably lower than the norm (10-20 years)and the risk of complications is great. The incidences of juvenile type-1 diabetes is raising by 3% per annum. I say the money to diabetes research is needed more than dementia-which typically aflicts people much later in life. Wed 18 Feb 2009 15:59:32 GMT+1 gunsandreligion http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=26#comment25 #23, neil_a2, I like the part about our keepingour guns. Wed 18 Feb 2009 15:50:33 GMT+1 gunsandreligion http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=25#comment24 #2, DC, there is some evidence emerging thatdiet can delay or prevent the onset of dementia,as presented here and elsewhere. Wed 18 Feb 2009 15:47:30 GMT+1 gunsandreligion http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=23#comment23 #18, MAII, since about half of our debt is held by foreigners, the course of action that you suggest will undoubtedlyresult in their dumping the dollar, resultingin hyperinflation, which destroys entiresocieties.As an example, the Allies in WWII considereddumping huge sums of forged Germancurrency on Nazi-occupied Europe, butrefrained, either because they consideredit "immoral," or because they consideredthe possibility that the Germans mightretaliate in kind. So, they went back todropping bombs.#14,Nick, the problem is not that the Democrats'spending priorities are wrong, it is that theprojects that they want to put the moneyinto cannot actually accept the funding forseveral years. A true stimulus would bea fast injection of liquidity into the systemto get the velocity of money up. Wed 18 Feb 2009 15:45:26 GMT+1 neil_a2 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=22#comment22 Justin, best wishes on your son. No offense intended on his remedy. Like much of this "milestone", his benefit is not related to economic stimulus. Still, it may provide some benefit.--I do not understand the economics of writing a check on credit when you can not meet your current bills and you are not using it to get work (to repay the credit and then some).The mathematics on this "milestone" does not work. $787 billion, to be repaid in 30 years to create 3.5 million jobs. Applying conventional amortization, this will cost each "job" $2,248 per month for the next 30 years. I do not expect those jobs to be in that tax bracket.(Basis: monthly mortgage on a 30 note is approximately 1% of principle, repaid over 360 months.)---I do not understand that we are borrowing money for "tax incentives". "Tax incentives" mean we are foregoing receipt of future taxes in exchange for some consideration (IE: moving a company to our region, create jobs in our region, and their taxes offset the "incentive")If, in fact, the "tax incentives" are $288 billion, that number should not be reflected in the "$787 billion" cost of the bill.Republicans understand amortization and tax incentives. I do not fault them for being hesitant.---So as not to sound too "Republican", I think we should shoot the dogs that write themselves bonuses on failing companies while stealing from the investors and the public."Shoot them and hang them on the fence post. Let them be an example for the others to see."We, however, need to retain our guns to treat them fairly.---... recall Burris. We have enough liars. We do not need a side show.---The "$1.5 trillion" for Geithner's "Bad Bank" is a license to steal. Like the many convenient "absentee ballots" found in Minnesota AFTER the election, we will have many "new" bad loans appearing after the fact for the public to fund. The ploy is set up before the vehicle to steal the public funds.Wake-up! This is why Geithner is "best" for the job. He knows how to walk this embezzlement of public funds through.Like the "Stimulus Package", the "bad bank" will have a 'sugar coated' name to get it past the public.---As a side note, I just closed my business. I can not justify continuing to pay self-employment, corporate, SUTA, FUTA, FICA, property, and the myriad of other taxes.Unlike Geithner, Dascle, and the others, I paid mine.For 23 years, I provided good and services. My business is too small to handle the taxes and regulations imposed, and leave enough to make it worth my while. I am tired of funding the "state".Let the benefactors settle their own debt. Wed 18 Feb 2009 15:03:18 GMT+1 ray564k http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=21#comment21 Justin you are right in the sense that much of the money is there to make the bill more politically feasible.But you're pointing at the wrong bits. It's the tax cuts which will make no difference, and were in the bill to get it to pass with 3 R Senators' votes. It also has the handy effect of disarming Republican arguments in favour of tax cuts in 2010/2012- if they're so in favour of tax cuts, why did they vote against the largest tax cut in history?If I am in a job and receive a tax cut, but suspect I am going to lose my job, I'll just put that money into the bank to save. WHATEVER the interest rate. If on the other hand, I have no job, and then get one, working to build schools for instance, then I will go out and spend because I now have a job.That's why govt spending is the answer in severe recessions- which is now- but changing interest rates can tweak things when we're in a slight slowdown/want to raise growth. Wed 18 Feb 2009 15:02:14 GMT+1 happylaze http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=20#comment20 20 posts all night . this is terrible.I think money should saved. and the best place to stop wasting money. Isreal. who now hold a nation to ransom over one soldier.Sam I thought MA was making sense.;) Wed 18 Feb 2009 14:57:35 GMT+1 frayedcat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=19#comment19 No worries if you don't understand the economics of it, poor Alan Greenspan has announced that he realizes he has been unfortunately wrong for the last 20+ years, and now proposes nationalizing banks and increasing regulations. Shucks AG, no harm done...... Wed 18 Feb 2009 14:22:18 GMT+1 SamTyler1969 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=18#comment18 #18Marcus,What a wonderful rant! You have been studying monetarist theory, which is great. Unfortunately you do need to understand a little more about how the theory works. For example, if you inject cash and the velocity of money decreases, the effects you desire (elimination of debt through hyper inflation) would not happen. The good news is the velocity of money is fairly constant regardless of M0, so your policy would in fact create inflation.While those fixed interest rate loans would be paid off at a much lower rate, benefitting the middle classes who can get such loans on cars and houses, the assets the purchased with them would massively devalue.Banks would go bust as their balance sheets become further burdened with toxic assets (reducing the velocity of money) or simply stop lending. The credit that would be available would be variable and at extreme rates. Anyone with a credit card balance would find themselves bankrupt. T-Bills would be valueless and the Chinese would stop funding our government. Massive lay offs, blood in the streets. On the other hand if you were talking about quantitative easing, I could live with it. But since that has already happened and continues to your point would be?Economist Sam Wed 18 Feb 2009 14:03:53 GMT+1 MarcusAureliusII http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=17#comment17 The stimulus package will prove too little too late. It doesn't really matter how the money (cash) gets into the system, it's like a transfusion of blood. In the economy, the body has been bleeding losing massive amounts of blood (equivalent cash value of assets) that has seeped out through the holes created by allowing two trillion + to be given to people to buy houses who couldn't possibly pay it back. Markets have only two emotions greed and fear. The system of checks and balances broke down when the liberals were able to socially re-engineer the distribution of wealth while the friends of conservatives found a way to make huge profits from it. This removed the element of fear. When people talk about greed, let's not forget that buying a house you want with borrowed money you know you will never be able to pay back is also greed. Risk means uncertainty, but there was no risk because it was certain that the money would never be paid back. Worse yet, the financial institutions invented 65 trillion in unregulated guarantees, insurance policies whose value depended on the fact that they would be paid back and the rating agencies rated these CDSs AAA. At the same time the US government increased its debt to 10 trillion while the states continued to run theirs up too. 40 billion alone in California. The solution...there is only one...is a massive infusion of cash, to the tune of around 5 to 15 trillion which will be used to pay off all fixed percentage dollar denominated debt. The victims will be those who foolishly loaned money to uncreditworthy borrowers including the US government. China, Europe, banks, bond holders will all get badly burned. This is not Weimar Germany where there will be a million precent inflation, maybe just 300 to 500 percent. The debt will be written down, paid back with cheap dollars, and we can move on, hopefully being smart enought to plug all of the gaping holes the free market laissez-faire capitalist supply siders created so it doesn't happen again. Short of that, there will be a worldwide depression and we are rapidly headed for it right now. In case anyone hadn't noticed, the stock market continues to collapse and Europe is sinking even faster than America as shown by the changes in the currency exchange rates. The economy not only depends on how much cash is infused but on its velocity. The world would do well to understand that until America gets back on its feet, it will have to keep this newly infused cash within its own economy to get it moving again. If it doesn't and it is allowed to dissipate to other economies, it will never recover and since its consumption drives all the other economies, neither will anyone elses. Wed 18 Feb 2009 12:40:34 GMT+1 saintDominick http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=16#comment16 Ref 13Protecting the vulnerable means providing funding to extend unemployment benefits, healthcare (COBRA) for the unemployed, and helping the States fund MEDICAID to ensure the poor are cared for.Considering the opinions you expressed regarding religious beliefs, I would not be surprised if you object to the idea of helping those in need, but such are the tenets of Christianity...if you base your position on what Christ did rather than what the crusaders want. Wed 18 Feb 2009 12:02:32 GMT+1 saintDominick http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=15#comment15 Justin, I am diabetic and I have cancer. The first I can control with diet and exercise, the second is more complicated. Considering the opposition to spending, priorities must be set and spending must be focused on either the most serious problems or on those where they is a high probability of finding a cure. Quite frankly, I am momre enraged by the GOP position on education funding than by their ambivalence towards healthcare and our crumbling infrastructure. Their cynicism and ideological bias are clearly apparent when they say that building new schools will not create jobs, and their Pinnochio attributes are apparent when they claim they did not have enough time to review the package, but produce a long list of items extracted from the bill that they consider "pork". Anything that is not spent on the elite and warfare is automatically labeled as pork by our pious Republican leaders.Allowing our economy to collapse, which is what the Republicans are doing, is tantamount to high treason. The economic and social security of our nation is at stake and instead of trying something - anything - to save it our pompous imbeciles in Congress continue to call for tax cuts for the rich and letting market forces deal with the problem, while the market is sending a SOS. To their credit, Republican governors and mayors support the stimulus package and believe it will help turn things around. IMO it will not be enough to correct all the problems we are having, and without private investment I doubt we will recover fully, but it is a step in the right direction. Wed 18 Feb 2009 11:57:03 GMT+1 frayedcat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=14#comment14 I think assisting the vulnerable are the sections about unemployed workers and struggling families.Increasing spending alone is not going to solve the problem. I think we need more industry, the monoplies need to divest, and the greed/sheep corporate culture must change. How can all this multi-billion dollar fraud have gone on for so long undetected? Wed 18 Feb 2009 11:41:19 GMT+1 Nick-Gotts http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=13#comment13 "It looks suspiciously like an attempt byone party to cement their agenda by using thecurrent economic crisis as a cover." - gunsandreligionWell, how utterly wicked of the Democrats to do this, just becvause they've just won a considerable electoral victory in the Presidency and both Houses. Of course, the Republicans would never think of pushing through huge tax cuts for the rich under similar circumstances. Wed 18 Feb 2009 11:38:00 GMT+1 Al from BR http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=12#comment12 This is the breakdown of the stimulus package as shown on Recovery.gov by the White House.American Recovery and Reinvestment Act:Tax Relief---------------------------$288 billionState and Local Fiscal Relief----$144 billionInfrastructure and science------$111 billionProtecting the Vulnerable-------$81 billionHealth Care------------------------$59 billionEducation and Training----------$53 billionEnergy------------------------------$43 billionOther---------------------------------$8 billionId like to know what "protecting the vulnerable" means; God and perhaps Pres. Obama only knows what that actually means, given that most Congressmen didnt bother to read the final bill before passing it.I sure hope it will work as well as the politicians promised, but when was the last time that happened? Wed 18 Feb 2009 07:46:57 GMT+1 gunsandreligion http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=11#comment11 Justin,I too am in a quandary about this bill, because Idon't know how the money will be spent. I amheartened by this particular bit of funding, butfearful that many of the thousands of other itemsin the bill will be wasteful.I would have felt better about the bill if theDemocrats had agreed to a Gramm-Rudmantype measure to take effect after the economy improves.It is true that it is not really a stimulus bill, becauseso much of the spending is spread out over 3years. It looks suspiciously like an attempt byone party to cement their agenda by using thecurrent economic crisis as a cover. Wed 18 Feb 2009 05:57:15 GMT+1 OldSouth http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=10#comment10 Dear Mr. Webb: First and foremost, best wishes from all of us to you and your family as you live day-to-day for the rest of your lives with this ugly reality. I can't imagine how I might react to the news you received about your son last December--I hope I would have a least a portion of the class and grace you have shown.Diabetes research is necessary, for ethical reasons, not economic reasons. I spent a good bit of my childhood watching my grandmother die by inches of this condition, as my mother attempted to care for both her and her husband and children. As such, if Congress is to spend tax dollars on it, it deserves the benefit of the real process. By hiding some shekels for diabetes research in this pile of pork, your cause is actually hurt. After all, the pile of pork is stuffed full of pet projects, some of which were so embarrassing as to not pass the laugh test, and had to be pulled once exposed to the light of day. Cynics understandably, and incorrectly, will be tempted to equate diabetes research with Congressman x's bike path along river y--nice item, but not an ethical imperative by any sane standard.Secondly, federal spending is notoriously inefficient, and vulnerable to misuse. Many millions were appropriated to maintain the New Orleans levees in the decades prior to 2005, but the money never actually was spent on the levees. Knowing how that one ended, why do we believe these funds promised for diabetes research will ever actually help a researcher unlock the mysteries of the pancreas? And, when a private donation is sought for this ethical imperative, the reaction naturally is, 'Didn't Congress just go borrow 800 billion dollars to help fund that?'. Congress may be doing you more harm than good, I fear.So, digital neighbors--hows about we surf over to the JDF site, and start sending money directly directly to the spot it will do the most good? Maybe call ourselves 'Justin's Posting Posse', or something equally silly. By the time the money makes it from Congress to a laboratory, much less productive of publishable research, Justin's son will likely be in high school.Anybody else in with me? Wed 18 Feb 2009 05:29:28 GMT+1 publiusdetroit http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=9#comment9 Gm and Chrysler are back in DC with good news that is bad. They have their "plan". It includes massive lay-offs.I realize there is no reason to build cars when you cannot sell the ones in your inventory. It is still going to drive up the unemployment rate to double digits by the end of March, if not sooner. This stimulus will take about year before we see if it is of any help in the job market.The words of an old Don MacClain tune keeps rolling in my head.Bad news on the doorstep. I couldn't take one more step...So bye, bye Miss American Pie;Drove my Chevy to the levy but the levy was dry.Them good-old boys were drinking whiskey and rye singing;This will be the day that I die.This will be the day that I die. Wed 18 Feb 2009 05:21:35 GMT+1 SamTyler1969 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=8#comment8 Justin,I think the simplest answer will come from the website that was promised to track the spending and jobs created. We should watch and smile.Any stimulus package requires an injection of confidence and spending/tax cuts throughout the entire economy in addition to that secured through the ordinary legislative process. Otherwise it would not be a stimulus. It would be regular spending.Let's watch, and see which states create the most jobs and who controls them. Then we can see which if the Republicans have a point (for example if Bobby Jindal does reject stimulus funds and his state performs as well as, say, New York over the next 2 years).Economist Sam Wed 18 Feb 2009 02:41:26 GMT+1 melvynd http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=7#comment7 what is the past Wed 18 Feb 2009 01:36:07 GMT+1 melvynd http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=6#comment6 shoudnt we be thinking of the future and not the past Wed 18 Feb 2009 01:34:55 GMT+1 NewEnglandVoter http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=5#comment5 As someone who lives in Massachusetts -- an area with a lot of medical research -- I know people who have lost medical research jobs over the last year due to funding cuts. This sort of research requires lab techs and computer and administrative support, not just the medical specialists. The jobs are mostly for people with a college degree or up, but it wouldn't be much of a recovery if the only job gains were for construction workers (and civil engineers).So it's not the bang for a buck that rebuilding bridges is, but it's not worthless. Wed 18 Feb 2009 01:34:27 GMT+1 melvynd http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=4#comment4 isnt it about time we refered to the world population. I'm sick of hearing about the the third world attitudes of the colonists of america. Get real. Wed 18 Feb 2009 01:31:24 GMT+1 bere54 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=3#comment3 I, like freeclench, am also very troubled by the way the Republicans have behaved. I believe they would have been obstructionist no matter what that bill had contained. There is an ugliness in that party that has been overt since 1994 and they have learned nothing from the recent election. Wed 18 Feb 2009 01:18:58 GMT+1 freeclench http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=2#comment2 No one is sure they grasp the economics behind this situation, Mr. Webb. Economics is a young science.For that matter, both conservative and liberal economists believe that even if the government does the right thing, there is a 30% chance the economy will continue to death-spiral to Great Depression standards.What troubles me is the way Republicans have behaved.-FreeClench Tue 17 Feb 2009 23:54:36 GMT+1 David Cunard http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=1#comment1 Since diabetes (not actually a "disease") is already controllable, funds would be far better spent on dementia research. If nothing is done very soon, it is just as likely that Justin or his wife will become afflicted with a disease which has no cure and is terminal - and a condition which the now-young man will have deal with in thirty years or so. Dying because of dementia is not a pretty sight. The cost of care for sufferers is enormous: I have read that worldwide cost for dementia care is $315 billion a year. ... This will only increase unless a cure or prophylactic can be discovered - and that needs research, research, research, which means money, money, money. Although one must be sympathetic to those, young and old, who have diabetes, the cure for dementia should be paramount. Tue 17 Feb 2009 23:52:06 GMT+1 David Cunard http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/justinwebb/2009/02/i_was_personally_delighted_by.html?page=0#comment0 Since diabetes (not actually "disease") is already controllable, funds would be far better spent on dementia research. If nothing is done very soon, it is just as likely that Justin or his wife will become afflicted with a disease which has no cure and is terminal - and a condition which the now-young man will have deal with in thirty years or so. Dying because of dementia is not a pretty sight. The cost of care for sufferers is enormous: I have read that worldwide cost for dementia care is $315 billion a year. ... This will only increase unless a cure or prophylactic can be discovered - and that needs research, research, research, which means money, money, money. Although one must be sympathetic to those, young and old, who have diabetes, the cure for dementia should be paramount. Tue 17 Feb 2009 23:51:47 GMT+1