We ought to try kindness, it is almost always the right thing to do. Ian Welsh
Codetalker: When Obama says he is ready to compromise “a little bit” what he means is he's ready to cut Medicare and Social Security, kiss extended unemployment benefits goodbye and let the payroll withholding tax 'holiday' end. so the rich will pay a tiny bit more in taxes and the rest of us will get austerity. And, of course, we'll get to say "Thank You, Sir."
Over, Over There: The Bundesbank forecasts German GDP to grow, if that's the word, a miserly 0.4% next year, down from it's 1.6% prediction six months ago. The bank did suggest that things will be better if the eurozone debt crisis doesn't get worse. If.
Working For The Man: Following a decades long trend, wages have risen less than inflation for the last 22 months. Tell me how we can have a recoveryTM if workers don't have the money be consumers? Yet corporate profits are at record levels. A neat trick, accomplished by taking ever increasing amounts from the workers' wages - best summed up by the antiquated phrase "monopoly power". A term you should learn: rentier, as in"We are becoming a rentier society." If that doesn't work, try "robber barons".
Efficiency: The Republicans say we have to deprive those 65 to 67 years old of Medicare coverage, even though they've paid for it for decades, because we are too poor to keep our promises. But the real costs come in the last year of two of life, so wouldn't it make more sense to throw the older folks, say those over 85 or so, off the program?
Taedia: Please contribute.
Annals of Religion: Why, in the face of countries full of evidence that austerity ruins economies and impoverishes citizens without any appreciable benefit to anyone but the looters who profit from privatization, do the EU leaders continue to insist on economic suicide? Oh, wait...
Our Gang: Five of the CEOs behind the “Fix the Debt” charade have over $150 million in their retirement accounts. They also, together, have overseen the elimination of over 100,000 jobs in the last 5 years while claiming $48 billion in tax credits. Those are the credentials that qualify them to tell the rest of us to suck it up.
Talking Points: Conservatives are less likely to accept ideas based on scientific evidence than they are the assertions by a consensus of those they view as authorities. This does not mean they are non-thinking conformists, easily led. They are, but this doesn't prove the case.
Reality Check: In August and September over a million more Americans signed up for food stamps - three times the number of new jobs crated during the same time. That 47.7 million are now receiving benefits is, of course, a record. In the 1970's about 1 out of 50 Americans received food stamps. Now it is about 1 out of six. Republicans maintain that people avoid going to work just so they can draw the average $134.29 a month. Living high.
Misunderestimating: The IPCC, fifth report - based on data collected a few years ago and already published in the journals - will begin published in 2013. And like the previous four, it will be out of date when printed and will consistently understate the impacts that global climate change will have. And the climate deniers will claim it is being alarmist.
Unmentioned & Unmentionable: The war on terror has lasted longer than the Civil War. Longer than World War I. Longer than World War II. Longer than all three together. And has cost immensely more – over $2 trillion so far - plus the loss of international prestige and the destruction of civil rights at home. Perhaps this would be a good time to stop. It would help with the deficit.
Senatorial Immunity: Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who wants to cut Medicare and Social Security, says that the President is a "small ball guy" who is afraid of "manning up". Ah, an enlightening and well-reasoned argument.
Porn O'Graph: More, or less.
The Parting Shot: