In a piece titled “The Obama agenda and the enthusiasm gap,” and by “gap” I hope he doesn’t intend something on the order of a “spark plug gap” when many of us are seeing a “no man’s land” between existentially warring armies littered mostly with our dead bodies, Robert Reich looks to the November elections and sees storm clouds, due to Obama’s tepid policies:
Whatever the outcome of the upcoming midterm elections, the activist phase of the Obama administration has likely come to a close. The president may have a fight on his hands even to hold on to what he’s already achieved because his legislative successes have been large enough to fuel strong opposition but not big enough to strengthen his support. The result could be disastrous for him and congressional Democrats.
Activist phase? Is “legislative success” akin to “staying the corporate course?” By “opposition” Reich probably means utterly predictable gun-toting, racist, Randian, war-mongering, just-say-no wingnuts, but how about the resentment fueled amongst hope-and-changers who have been completely shafted on just about every issue from GITMO to the economy?
But let’s stick with one issue, the economy, about which Reich appears to be huffing Geithner’s unicorn farts:
Consider the stimulus package. Although it’s difficult to separate the consequences of fiscal and monetary policy, most knowledgeable observers conclude that the stimulus has had a positive effect. Real GDP is now increasing at an annual rate of 2.4%, and although the recovery is still fragile it’s unlikely we’ll fall back into a full-fledged recession.
I have to save my head explosion for later, but wtf is Reich talking about? Since when does a continual, quarter-to-quarter shrinking of GDP, from 5% in Q4 2009, to 3.7% in Q1 2010, to a current anemic 2.4% predict stable growth ahead? The economy is on track for negative GDP growth by Q4 this year. All the red lights are blinking and buzzers are sounding, and only Obama, Geithner, and Reich think otherwise. Even Bernanke, when he’s not lying through his teeth, occasionally admits things are “unusually uncertain.” Even fucking Greenspan admits that the so-called recovery depends on improvements in housing. That’s always been true, and it enter ain’t happening.
The central problem continues to be inadequate aggregate demand. The administration’s original sin was not spending enough and focusing the stimulus more directly on job creation.
The central problem continues to be debt deflation. The proverbial wads have been shot, and the bad paper remains. The remaining good paper is set to go bad. The original sin was “extending and pretending” the corporate status quo and not saving ordinary people. Preserving an unsustainable status quo has always been Obama’s moral twilight zone.
Here’s where Reich ‘splodes my head:
In fairness, no one knew how sick the economy was in February 2009 when Congress approved the initial stimulus.
Fuck. A. Duck. We need electro-shock collars for these mindless judgment zombies. Nobody knew…ZAPPO! Nobody could have predicted…ZAP! ZAP! ZAP!
Q2 GDP will likely be revised down to a whopping 1.7%.
Fuck the hallelujah duck!