recentpopularlog in

robertogreco : debtceiling   9

Hullabaloo: No matter what Obama does, Republicans won't care and won't fold
"We are in uncharted waters, an era unprecedented since the Civil War in which one side is willing to let the country burn down in order to achieve its goals. Californians already know this well, having been forced into perpetual fiscal crises by a bare 1/3 Republican remnant in each chamber. Even as Republicans continued to slowly lose ground and seats, the vast majority of the caucus remained entrenched, fearing only opposition from the right. They were more than happy to let the Democratic-controlled state slip into chaos in order to get their way. California Democrats were left in the ugly position of making a series of Sophie's Choices, determining only which children to shoot to appease the tiny Republican minority. In an era of perpetual and consequence-free hostage taking, the only calculation that matters is which hostages to save and which ones to shoot.

Changing that equation doesn't involve intimidating Republicans or opening the eyes of their constituents.They're not…"
debtceiling  debtcrisis  barackobama  republicans  taxes  government  economics  politics  fiscalcliff  california  2013  davidatkins 
january 2013 by robertogreco
John Lanchester · The Non-Scenic Route to the Place We’re Going Anyway: The Belgian Solution · LRB 8 September 2011
"There is, just, time for this change of course to happen, before it’s all too late. But I fear that the grip of anti-spending ideology is so strong throughout the West, and the politicians’ fear of the banks is so entrenched, that the ten-year slog looks more likely. Oh strangest of all strangenesses, the deep longing for the whole world to be more like Belgium."
johnlancaster  2011  finance  crisis  economics  policy  eu  politics  us  uk  greatrecession  debt  debtceiling  debtcrisis  belgium 
september 2011 by robertogreco
Standard & Poor's Downgrade: How Debt Has Defined Human History - Speakeasy - WSJ
"in the Middle Ages…merchants had to develop reputations for scrupulous integrity—not just always paying their debts, but forgiving others’ debts if they were in difficulties, & being generally pillars of their communities. Merchants could be trusted w/ money because they convinced others that they didn’t think money was the most important thing…“credit,” “honor,” & “decency” became the same thing…

For much of human history, the great social evil…was the debt crisis. The masses of the poor would become indebted to the rich…lose flocks & fields, begin selling family members into peonage & slavery…uprisings…Periods dominated by credit money, where everyone recognized that money was just a promise, a social arrangement, almost invariably involve some kind of mechanism to protect debtors…

…since 1971, we did exactly the opposite. Instead of setting up great overarching institutions designed to protect debtors…[we] protect creditors."
culture  politics  history  economics  money  debt  1971  2011  middleages  medieval  credit  integrity  usuary  honor  decency  slavery  peonage  creditors  debtors  bankruptcy  debtforgiveness  wealth  disparity  debtceiling  society  imf  relgion  s&p 
august 2011 by robertogreco
A Story More Important than Debt Limit Kabuki | Informed Comment
"The reason that the Republicans deliberately destroyed the balanced budget and created unprecedented government debt was precisely in hopes that at some point they could use the debt as an excuse to destroy social security, medicare, and myriads of educational and health programs. They represent rich people, and the rich don’t want to be having to bear their fair share of the national burden. What better way to get out of having to pay those pesky taxes than making sure the government doesn’t do anything for anyone but the rich.<br />
<br />
So everything unfolding in Washington was planned out in a room in 2001, and is going according to plan."
juancole  crisis  2011  2001  wealth  wealthy  debtlimitkabuki  debtceiling  debtcrisis  government  classwarfare  rich  budget  budgetcuts  taxes  finance 
july 2011 by robertogreco
Charting the American Debt Crisis - Interactive - NYTimes.com
"America has a long history of raising the debt limit to accommodate spending. Below, a look at some of the issues in the debate over the nation’s debt."
nytimes  charts  2011  debtcrisis  debtceiling  history 
july 2011 by robertogreco
How Our Economy Was Overrun by Monsters and What to Do About It - Umair Haque - Harvard Business Review
"The economy is a social construction, built and re-built every day, with every tiny decision we make. No, the average Joe and Jane don't demand designer playhouses — but they do demand the stuff that make the super-rich, well, super-rich. J-Lo perfume, fast-fashion, oil — lots and lots of oil — and all the mass-made "product" lining the shelves of exurban big-box stores. The inevitable ultimate consequences of demand that fails to weigh human, social, natural, and personal costs of such so-called "goods" are public "bads": unemployment, inequality,pollution, isolation — and capital flowing upwards faster and faster. Designer playhouses aren't a first-order consequence of our preferences, but they probably are a last-order consequence, an ultimate result…<br />
Our monsters are reflections of us."
2011  umairhaque  economics  debtceiling  consumerism  consumption  extravagance  wealth  materials  us  society  desire  eudaemonia 
july 2011 by robertogreco
Remember World War I
"As I have written elsewhere, the only thing that will spare us now is for President Obama to invoke the 14th Amendment…<br />
Mike Tomasky…has a good piece…making the same argument but questions whether Obama has the nerve to do it—the usual question with our president…<br />
This may sound churlish at such a moment, but in addition to blaming the recklessness of today’s Republican party, the man who deserves substantial blame for this impending economic doomsday is Barack Obama. For two and a half years, he has been all but training the Republicans, Pavlov fashion, to keep rejecting compromise. He has done this by rewarding them with a treat every time they up the ante or move the goal posts.<br />
<br />
Obama’s job, as a crisis president, was to define the nature of the economic disaster and the way out of it, to move public opinion in his direction, and then to make it very costly for Republicans to resist. That’s what the great crisis presidents have done."
robertkuttner  barackobama  debtceiling  crisis  2011  republicans 
july 2011 by robertogreco
The Cult That Is Destroying America - NYTimes.com
"…it’s increasingly obvious that what we’re looking at is the destructive influence of a cult that has really poisoned our political system.<br />
<br />
…I don’t mean the fanaticism of the right. Well, OK, that too. But my feeling about those people is that they are what they are; you might as well denounce wolves for being carnivores. Crazy is what they do and what they are.<br />
<br />
No, the cult that I see as reflecting a true moral failure is the cult of balance, of centrism.<br />
<br />
…We have a crisis in which the right is making insane demands, while the president & Democrats in Congress are bending over backward to be accommodating — offering…plans that are far to the right of public opinion.<br />
<br />
So what do most news reports say? They portray it as a situation in which both sides are equally partisan, equally intransigent — because news reports always do that. And we have influential pundits calling out for a new centrist party, a new centrist president, to get us away from the evils of partisanship."
paulkrugman  2011  debtceiling  crisis  us  politics  policy  journalism  media  debate  centrism 
july 2011 by robertogreco
George Packer: The Debt-Ceiling Fight Continues : The New Yorker
"The sociologist Max Weber, in his 1919 essay “Politics as a Vocation,” drew a distinction between “the ethic of responsibility” and “the ethic of ultimate ends”—between those who act from a sense of practical consequence and those who act from higher conviction, regardless of consequences. These ethics are tragically opposed, but the true calling of politics requires a union of the two. On its own, the ethic of responsibility can become a devotion to technically correct procedure, while the ethic of ultimate ends can become fanaticism. Weber’s terms perfectly capture the toxic dynamic between the President, who takes responsibility as an end in itself, and the Republicans in Congress, who are destructively consumed with their own dogma. Neither side can be said to possess what Weber calls a “leader’s personality.” Responsibility without conviction is weak, but it is sane. Conviction without responsibility, in the current incarnation of the Republican Party, is raving mad."

[via: http://kday.tumblr.com/post/7824884943/george-packer-the-debt-ceiling-fight-continues-the ]
teaparty  us  debtceiling  maxweber  1919  2011  responsibility  ethics  convictions  consequences 
july 2011 by robertogreco

Copy this bookmark:





to read