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« They Should Have Been Forewarned | Main | Give It Up, Folks »

Life Under The Bush Debacle

Heh:

Letís see, last time I checked,
  1. The stock market is at an all-time high, thus
  2. Retirement accounts are at last recovering.
  3. Unemployment is at a 25-year low,
  4. Taxes are at 20-year lows,
  5. Federal revenues are at all-time highs,
  6. The Federal deficit is down almost 50%,
  7. Real estate values have soared,
  8. Inflation is at a 20-year low,
  9. There have been no successful attacks since 9/11,
  10. Al Queda is being taken apart, one body at a time.
  11. U.S. and British Intelligence have thwarted a number of attacks.
  12. The terrorists are flocking to Iraq to be killed, instead of boarding planes for this country.

Oh, and oil fell below fifty bucks a barrel today, at least briefly. I suspect that it will close down there next week. As the emailer notes, if there were a Democrat president, the media would be talking about the greatest economy in fifty years, or more likely, in history.

Posted by Rand Simberg at January 18, 2007 01:40 PM
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Comments

Should add:
-North Korea now possesses nuclear weapons
-Latin America now includes several anti-US governments

And what does this mean?
"The Federal deficit is down almost 50%"

Didn't we used to have a surplus?

Posted by Bill Riemer at January 18, 2007 02:19 PM

At the time of the 1994 Agreed Framework, it was commonly said that North Korea possessed 1-2 nuclear weapons.

Also, unless one were to believe that Bush is capable of time-travel, the North Koreans were seeking a nuclear capability from 1989, and were cheating on the 1994 Agreed Framework by 1999. This would suggest that North Korea would have nuclear weapons regardless of who was in the WH.

But thanks for displaying BDS, at least when it comes to NK.

As for Latin America, are we supposed to believe that Hugo Chavez was elected because of Dubya?! Exactly what did Bush do to Venezuela that would cause this? Veto a free-trade agreement? Attack Venezuela?

The same goes for Bolivia (which did, however, receive support from Chavez, so perhaps that's the problem?).

BTW, Bill, Robert Mugabe's been more oppressive than ever. Perhaps you should chalk that up against Dubya, too!

Posted by Lurking Observer at January 18, 2007 02:28 PM

Simberg neglects that Bush actually inherited a Surplus,
then turned it into a deficit.

Taxes are at 20 year lows for the Billionaires.

People who work for a living are still paying the same
level of taxes.

Simberg neglects that last year the US Army had no
C-1 capable Ready brigades.

Posted by anonymous at January 18, 2007 02:31 PM

An American woman who was killed here on Wednesday had just left the headquarters of a prominent Sunni political party, where she had been teaching a class on democracy, when her convoy of vehicles was ambushed by gunmen.

(As much as Simberg talks about Iraq, he does less then
a 24 year old girl does)

Posted by anonymous at January 18, 2007 02:33 PM

Simberg neglects that Bush actually inherited a Surplus, then turned it into a deficit.

Yes, right, Anonymous Moron, that was obviously George Bush's fault. It had nothing to do with the recession that he inherited when Bill Clinton's bubble popped and the travel industry was wiped out by 911.

Posted by Rand Simberg at January 18, 2007 02:35 PM

Ignoring the troll for a moment, there was a story today that the Saudis claim they're going to increase oil infrastructure greatly, and oil prices (for other reasons) are dropping a lot lately. To top it off, there have been recent news items claiming that Iran was weak on oil due to lack of R&D and domestic subsidization.

Anybody wanna speculate whether we're taking the old "cheap oil as a weapon" page out of the playbook again (much less gotten the Saudis to run it again)?

Posted by Big D at January 18, 2007 03:03 PM

Anybody wanna speculate whether we're taking the old "cheap oil as a weapon" page out of the playbook again (much less gotten the Saudis to run it again)?

I think that's quite likely, particularly considering that it's a twofer--it hits Hugo Chavez' socialist schemes below their waterline as well.

The trick is to get oil low enough to hurt Iran and Venezuela, but not so low as to discourage new technologies and exploration here (though I hear that oil shale from the Rockies can be profitable at thirty bucks).

Posted by Rand Simberg at January 18, 2007 03:17 PM

Yep, they are sitting up Iran for a fall same play as they pulled on the Soviets.

Wanna bet we aren't putting missile batteries in SA as well as Iraq now?

I will bet this is to protect the oil infrastructure against any retalitory strike by Iran.

Posted by Mike Puckett at January 18, 2007 03:46 PM

Rand, I don't think you are looking at this objectively...let's see:

(1) The stock market is at an all-time high, thus
(2) Retirement accounts are at last recovering.

- Took six years to make it though, so what is the yearly rate of return over six years? That's the calculation that should be examined. After all over time if the stock market did NOT rise, why would anyone invest at all ?...

(3) Unemployment is at a 25-year low,
- That's good

(4) Taxes are at 20-year lows,

(5) Federal revenues are at all-time highs,
- Even many conservative economists agree that this is a bubble...the revenue increase is transitory..the correlation between lower taxes and increased revenue does not exist though its a nice argument that would be exploited no matter who was President. The real situation is much more dangerous in the long term..

(6) The Federal deficit is down almost 50%,
- As someone else mentioned, if you start with a surplus and then say the deficit is now down 50% what kind of argument is that?

(7) Real estate values have soared,
- Is that good or bad? I wouldn't take credit for making it more expensive to purchase your first home...

(8) Inflation is at a 20-year low,
-That's good

(9) There have been no successful attacks since 9/11,
- How do you argue with that? !!

(10) Al Queda is being taken apart, one body at a time.
- And the Democrats would have not done that I guess?

(11)U.S. and British Intelligence have thwarted a number of attacks.

- Good job.

(12) The terrorists are flocking to Iraq to be killed, instead of boarding planes for this country.

- Now we know why we invaded Iraq ! This was the reason !..Let's go back in time and reword that pre-Iraq War speech...!!

OK. So 3 of the 12 points have merit. Not that great a record in my opinion. Of course if the shoe was on the other foot Democrats would be singing the same song for sure.

Posted by Toast_n_Tea at January 18, 2007 06:25 PM

I thought you were libertarian. Shouldn't soaring federal revenues be a BAD THING?

Posted by Adrasteia at January 18, 2007 06:38 PM

13) The Indian and Pakistani armies are not massed in numbers in excess of _both_ sides' troops of the battle in Iraq. Tensions were quite tight in here as President Bush entered office.
14) Libya turned over warehouses of uranium centrifuges, packed for shipment somewhere.
15) The Palestinians have a state. It really sucks, but it seems to have taken the actual Palestinian's mind completely off Israel.
16) The tremendous hoopla over the Israeli wall seems to have added to piece #15 making a dramatic drop in warfare inside Israel.
17) A swath of New Europe has had a taste of the edges of the WoT on their own turf. Germany, in particular. (France, however, is still in denial about the difference between 'race riots' and 'kids-being-kids'.)

A rebuttal to Toast:
4) More money in your personal pockets at _every_ income level, and this isn't a 'good thing'. "Meritless." Heh.

10) Not if they were honestly using the powers of the executive branch in the ways that they stridently demand President Bush employ them.


12) Go back and read the action SOTUs for 2002 & 2003. Particularly 2002's. Oh, you can't wrap your mind around the nuance of combining "Iraq is a piece of the War on Terror", and "Iraq had no operational involvement in 9/11." Well, that would explain why it seems so incomprehensible.

Posted by Al at January 18, 2007 07:15 PM

Simberg

So busy stooging for Bush.

Either Bush can take credit for decisions on the economy
or it's macro forces that are beyond him.

But you can't have it both ways.

Oh you forgot Bush sleeping through the briefing that said
"Bin Laden determined to attack"

Posted by anonymous at January 18, 2007 08:31 PM

With everything going so great, what explains the recent election results?

Gotta be the MSM.

Posted by Jon Penn at January 18, 2007 08:55 PM

The stock market is at an all-time high, thus
It's the long term derivitive that matters, not the absolute value.

Retirement accounts are at last recovering.
Companies are dumping pension plans left right and center.

Unemployment is at a 25-year low,
Civilian labor force participation rate has dropped markedly in the last decade - unemployment is currely defined at those who have actually bothered to look for a job in the last month.

Taxes are at 20-year lows,
But not sustainably.

Federal revenues are at all-time highs,
Due to a massive shift of weath to the small portion of the country in higher tax brackets - who will have some taxes phased out in the next couple of years.

The Federal deficit is down almost 50%,
From when?

Real estate values have soared,
1) A double edged sword for new buyers 2) A bubble

Inflation is at a 20-year low,
See above claim for total cost of living issues

There have been no successful attacks since 9/11,
Bali, Madrid, London, Baghdad * 10,000 ... and , oh yes, the unsolved anthrax attack of October 2001

Al Queda is being taken apart, one body at a time.
Little evidence that its regeneration has stalled.

U.S. and British Intelligence have thwarted a number of attacks.
Which is their freaking job.

The terrorists are flocking to Iraq to be killed, instead of boarding planes for this country.
Which is perfectly consistent with making Iraq into a shiny happy beacon of Arab Democracy, which doesn't kill young Americans at the rate of 2.5 per day.

Bush truly is the Carter of the panicky, insecure right.

Posted by Duncan Young at January 19, 2007 02:58 AM

Fifty bucks for 159 liters of oil? That's DIRT CHEAP! We buy a liter for 230 forints! That about one dollar. One liter is 0.87987699 Imperial quarts!

Posted by A Hungarian at January 19, 2007 05:45 AM

Didn't Jimmy Carter observe the Hugo Chavez recall election and remark before the election:

"I might project results that will be much more satisfactory than they were in 2000 in Florida".

And after the election when claims of fraud started coming out, didn't he remark:

"accept the results and work together for the future".

With this being the case, I can't help but consider Bill Reimer to be an ignorant fool.

Posted by Leland at January 19, 2007 06:47 AM

Watch Anonymous squeal like a stuck fascist pig. That proves these points are true.

Posted by Mike Puckett at January 19, 2007 07:01 AM

"Didn't Jimmy Carter observe the Hugo Chavez recall election and remark before the election"

Who cares what Carter said? He's an idiot.

You left out Ortega in Nicaragua. The whole region is turning leftist. Didn't Reagan stop that?

Posted by Bill Riemer at January 19, 2007 07:09 AM

> Taxes are at 20 year lows for the Billionaires.

Actually, billionares are paying both more dollars and a larger fraction of the tax burden.

But, let's play the game.

What fraction of the tax burden should the folks with the top 1, 5, 10, and 20% of the income pay?

Posted by Andy Freeman at January 19, 2007 08:26 AM

The stock market is at an all-time high, thus

It's the long term derivitive that matters, not the absolute value.

If you actually look at the data, you can see that what happened is relatively normal growth, with an anomoly from about 1996 to 2003 where the market surged above the "normal growth line" and then came back down to the "normal growth line." So if you invested before the dot com bubble, you did fine. You only lost money if you invested on Clinton's watch. (I'll leave comentary on that to someone else...)

Posted by David Summers at January 19, 2007 09:06 AM

I see that Bill Reimer proved my point. Reimer, any other historical events you want to blame on the current President?

Posted by Leland at January 19, 2007 09:23 AM

> Didn't we used to have a surplus?

NO, YOU HALFWIT, WE NEVER HAD A "SURPLUS".

Never. EVER.

(Why has no one here called this nit on this yet?)

> As someone else mentioned, if you start with a surplus and then say the deficit is now down 50% what kind of argument is that?

One borne out of ignorance or duplicity, and "agreed with" by one or the other of same...

Look at the figures for the damned Federal Deficit -- they are openly available -- Try HERE as well as many other places -- the friggin' thing has grown every year for decades. All that happened in the 90s was that the economy was going gangbusters, and that meant that tax revenue was substantially up, even as the various forces in place prevented the Dems from jacking taxes up higher.

A "surplus" would mean that we were paying the deficit OFF (generally by buying back bonds previously sold). This would mean (GASP!) that the deficit would have DECREASED at least one of those years. The best year was at the height of the boom, 1999, when the INCREASE dropped to "only" 20 billion dollars. (Hey, a billion here, a billion there -- sooner or later, it adds up to REAL MONEY)

You want to see the status of the government? Here's where to start:
http://www.gpoaccess.gov/eop/tables06.html
It took me all of 15 minutes to find that from absolute scratch.

Now, here's today's basic economics lesson: The amount of debt is far, far less important than the debt-to-income RATIO. In other words, if you owe US$5,000, and are only making US$15,000 a year, you are FAR worse off than the person who is in debt for US$10,000 and who has an income of US$50,000

Stop listening to idiots parroting absolute BS like "wasn't there a surplus?" (esp. when EVERYONE with a clue was pointing out all along that it was NEVER a surplus but a "DECREASE IN THE INCREASE", which is not even VAGUELY the same the whole thing was a total, flat out LIE from the very start).

Look through those numbers for the following:
1) ENORMOUS increase in the GNP over the last 20 years*
2) Substantial increase in the Deficit, but not an increase in terms of debt-to-income
3) Breakdowns on WHO, exactly, pays into the system, vs. how much people TAKE out through benefits and perks (you benefit from better roads just as much as that rich bastard, if not more).
4) Breakdowns on taxes paid vs. refunds, kickbacks (called "Earned Income Credits" and the like), Welfare, and other payout programs (Hint -- the lower 50% of the income bracket pays ALMOST NOTHING into Federal revenues... most of them pay substantially into state and local, but that's not the same by any means)
5) Look through there to find the REAL figures, such as true wage increases with time, and who has benefited THE MOST -- which is the poor schnook who now HAS the chance to earn real money in a REAL job, without begging for a handout from some two-bit SOB politician.

-----------------------------

*I point out this massive increase because the USA CREATES 1/3rd OF THE PLANET's WEALTH, despite being only 1/20th of its population and getting only about 1/6th of its resources.

WE KICK ***ASS***

Our GNP is about the same as all the other seven G-8 nations COMBINED

Our GNP is about the same as ALL THE REST of the WORLD outside of the G-8.

Get a clue, fire the Dems (hell, fire the GOP, too!) and LEAVE THE ECONOMY ALONE.

It does NOT need to be f'ed with.

Posted by OBloodyHell at January 19, 2007 09:49 PM

at current rates, China will surpass the US.

Posted by anonymous at January 20, 2007 01:23 AM

Ugh. Once again I find myself agreeing with anonymous.

What about the balance of payments deficit? Which I believe is now running at about US$ 300 billion per year.

In other words that fine economy of yours is running on borrowed money. Not sustainable - unless the US flat out admits that it has decided to become the American Imperium. Some other countries, some of those with a few teeth of their own, might object.

Posted by Fletcher Christian at January 20, 2007 05:33 AM

"at current rates, China will surpass the US.

Posted by anonymous at January 20, 2007 01:23 AM"

And there is no reason based on past experience or any rational economic theory to expect China to mainain anything near current rates of growth for any great length of time. I will be a billionare in a couple hundred years based on compound interest.

It is folly predict future events by projecting current trends indefinitely. China is a developing nation and its growth rate will slow down dramatically in the future same as Japan did.

China is demographically limited and it will catch up with them the same as it did with Japan.

Do you grow the same amount each year as you did when you were 11?

Posted by Mike Puckett at January 20, 2007 10:09 AM

china will grow like heck for another 10 years
meanwhile it's very aggressive, and willing to
slang it out with the US.

But, Bush is prepping to fight a war with iran
because of the neo-cons

Posted by anonymous at January 20, 2007 11:20 AM

Mike, unfortunately yes I do - however, now it's outwards. :)

Posted by Fletcher Christian at January 20, 2007 12:00 PM

"china will grow like heck for another 10 years
meanwhile it's very aggressive, and willing to
slang it out with the US.

But, Bush is prepping to fight a war with iran
because of the neo-cons"

.......and the Russians escaped while we weren't watching them....like Russians do...now we've got all this room, we even got the Moon....I hear the USSR will be open soon...as a vacation land for Lawyers in Love........

Posted by Mike Puckett at January 20, 2007 05:26 PM

"

Mike, unfortunately yes I do - however, now it's outwards. :)

Posted by Fletcher Christian at January 20, 2007 12:00 PM
"

Isn't that what Pipin told Faramir in the EE of RoTK?

Fortunately, work keeps me moving out of doors for the most part and that helps greatly on that score although I did something I haven't done in many years over the last 24 hours, I killed an entire box of Twinkies.

Posted by Mike Puckett at January 20, 2007 05:29 PM

freeman asks what should be the appropriate level of tax
on the top 5% of our society.

good question.

I know people who work for a livingpay FICA plus the employer match, that's 15%.

They Pay FUTA, tha'ts another 3%.

They then pay regular income taxes, which can be 15-33%.

If you look at the wealthy, they pay capital gains taxes
which can be about 15%, then they may pay dividend
tax which varies, but is subject to protected rates.

I think it's a bad idea to tax labor more then capital.
The high labor taxes, the republicans have pushed
has helped crush manufacturing in this country.

Posted by anonymous at January 20, 2007 11:37 PM

OBloodyHell:
"deficit" != "debt".

Have a nice day.

Posted by Duncan Young at January 21, 2007 08:45 AM

9 and 11 don't really fit. While some attacks have been stopped, London was hit and almost (but for the grace of inept terrorists) twice in a couple of weeks.

That's ignoring

The property boom isn't necessarily an economic good thing either.

Inflation is sending mixed messages to the world economy (up in the UK at the moment).

Oh, and didn't the Russians just murder a British subject on British soil and there's bug all anybody acan do to them these days?

Posted by Daveon at January 21, 2007 02:18 PM

Whoops - I meant to say that is ignoring Bali, Madrid and a bunch of others.

Posted by Dave at January 21, 2007 02:19 PM


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