The election is about more than whether a woman becomes president

The “Acela primaries” in the Northeast made it clearer than ever that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton will be the major-party nominees this fall, and I concur with a tweet by ProPublica’s Alec MacGillis: "A candidate who thrives on giving offense versus one who thrives on taking umbrage. This will be a looong six months."

Any hope of a substantive general-election campaign was extinguished by Mr. Trump’s primary-night comments about Ms. Clinton benefiting from a “woman’s card” and the reaction to the same. Sexism is an important topic, but it’s also a very easy one for reporters and columnists at The New York Times, Washington Post and other media centers in relatively prosperous cities. It’s depressing to think that Mr. Trump’s boorish comments about women, immigrants and various minority groups will drive political coverage over the next six months rather than the big questions of what to do about the half of America that is falling farther and farther behind economically. If the only message to come out of the election is that the United States is ready for a woman president, that will certainly be progress, but it won’t be much of a guide for what the next president and Congress should do in office.

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One of the key moments in Ms. Clinton’s campaign for the Democratic nomination came after rival Senator Bernie Sanders dismissed her endorsements by major gay-rights and abortion-rights groups that he called “part of the establishment.” (There are no significant differences in Ms. Clinton’s and Mr. Sanders’s views on issues of concern to those groups.) At a February debate, Ms. Clinton responded, “Honestly, Senator Sanders is the only person who I think would characterize me, a woman running to be the first woman president, as exemplifying the establishment.”

Ms. Clinton has been running as a surrogate for all the women who are ignored in classrooms, excluded from boardrooms and bypassed when civic leaders recruit candidates for political office, and they certainly need a powerful voice on their side. But the wife of a former president, who has had $256 million in campaign funds raised on her behalf and who accumulated endorsements from elected officials faster than any Democrat in over 30 years, is certainly part of the establishment. And groups like Planned Parenthood and the Human Rights Campaign, whatever their merits, are certainly part of the Democratic Party’s establishment, and they receive disproportionate support from the most educated and wealthiest parts of America.

One challenge for Ms. Clinton if she faces Mr. Trump, an alarmingly ill-informed candidate who nevertheless taps into legitimate anger at not-so-benign neglect of the working class, is to get past that moment in the debate. That is, Americans without college degrees who are unemployed or trying to get by with low-wage jobs won’t be receptive to the message “Yes, I know you’re hurting. But don’t worry. I will protect abortion rights.”

The long primary battle between Ms. Clinton and Mr. Sanders has been wearying in part because the represent two different motivations for voting. Ms. Clinton is the résumé candidate, appealing to voters who treat elections like job interviews. Her supporters feel she is the most qualified person from either party running for president this year, that she’s paid her dues for the job. (Thus, the furor when Mr. Sanders called her “unqualified” to be president because, among other reasons, she voted to authorize “the disastrous war in Iraq.” It was “troubling,” wrote three political scientists in the Washington Post, to use the word “unqualified” against a female candidate.) Mr. Sanders is the message candidate, appealing to voters who want to signal dissatisfaction with the current priorities of the governing class. Few elections feature two candidates who are so far apart on the résumé/message continuum—the most comparable may be the 1988 Democratic race between Michael Dukakis and Jesse Jackson—and that’s partly why the supporters of Ms. Clinton and Mr. Sanders seem to be talking past each other.

In a post titled “Here’s Why I Never Warmed Up to Bernie Sanders,” Mother Jones’s Kevin Drum makes a succinct case for the Clinton side of the argument, writing that the Sanders call for a “revolution” is unrealistic and likely to increase cynicism about politics when it fails. “If you want to make a difference in this country,” he argues, “you need to be prepared for a very long, very frustrating slog. You have to buy off interest groups, compromise your ideals, and settle for half loaves—all the things that Bernie disdains.” I think this is something of a caricature of Mr. Sanders. Unlike, say, Ralph Nader, Mr. Sanders has been a government executive (mayor of Burlington, Vermont) and has settled for some half loaves during his time in Congress—for example, voting for the 1994 crime bill that is now seen as going too far in promoting mass incarceration. I think that Mr. Sanders and his supporters would consider a “revolution” in thought to be a significant achievement, and are not about to drop out of the political process if Wall Street isn’t pulled down this year.

Ms. Clinton would enter a general election with many advantages over Mr. Trump, including her more extensive experience, her diplomatic temperament and, yes, his unpopularity outside his core constituency of non-college-educated white men. She might be able to win handily if gender issues and identity politics dominate campaign coverage—if Mr. Trump keeps making outrageous statements and Ms. Clinton keeps rolling her eyes at them. But I do hope there’s time to talk about places like Flint, Mich., and how both parties intend to bring them back to economic security. People can’t pay their bills with the fact that a woman has been elected president.

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Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
A president Clinton perhaps could end the “left behind middle class era” that began when the last President Clinton left office …http://politicsthatwork.com/graphs/median-income-president Control of the White House and Congress by one party perhaps could leverage a new president’s success. For example, national debt grows the fastest when control is split between parties, second fastest when Republicans control everything, and it drops when Democrats control everything… http://politicsthatwork.com/graphs/debt-gdp-president
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
The National deficit never surpassed $500B before Obama became president. In his 1st four years, it was over $1Trillion, and was greatest in the first 2 years, when Democrats controlled the presidency, and both houses of Congress. The record deficit was $1.4 Trillion in Obama's first year in office, and has never got below $400B in his presidency, adding $8 Trillion to the national debt. So, the Democrats own this problem.
Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
Let's hope a new congress and new president respond quickly and adequately to the left behind.
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
The Obama administration has proposed deficit enlarging budgets every single year. It is only the block by a Republican-controlled House (after the first 2 years) that has kept spending down and reversed the massive deficits of the first two years (when Dems controlled the House and Senate). This is exactly what happened in the last Clinton administration, where Republicans gained control of both houses after the first 2 years and put a brake on spending. The surplus years of the latter part of the Clinton administration was due mainly to the "stingy" Republican Congress, who were pilloried at the time for being grinches for taking away goodies promised by Clinton. The current economic recovery is longer only because it has been the slowest in US history - primarily because of a massive increase in regulations. Many of these regulations are actually intended to kill certain jobs - especially in the oil and gas industry. Hillary Clinton is now embarrassed by her own words in West Virginia, when she said in March " “we’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business.” Democrats are no longer connected to blue collar workers. Their abortion/environmental/gay/identity agenda is all targeted to richer donors. Hillary will almost certainly lose badly among blue-collar workers in the fall, even if she likely wins the general election. http://hotair.com/archives/2016/05/03/no-hillary-did-not-apologize-for-bragging-about-putting-coal-miners-out-of-business/
Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
Regulations cover safety, the environment, public health, etc. Regulation is the right thing to do. Regulation perhaps is the minimum acceptable accountability society should expect of a responsible business. What areas should business not be accountable? “…we’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business.” Peabody Energy didn’t even wait for Hillary to get elected. Peabody Energy, the world's largest private-sector coal producer, filed for bankruptcy in April, 2016. Chinese coal imports plunged over 30 percent in June, 2015 versus a year earlier, due to sluggish demand. China is the largest coal consumer in the world. U.S. coal exports have been in free fall since 2012. In 2010, coal generated 44 percent of US electric power and natural gas just 22 percent. In 2015, natural gas surpassed coal as the top source of U.S. electric power generation at 31 percent vs. 30 percent for coal.
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
Chuck - some regulations are good for the environment and bad for the economy. But so much of the Obama regulations are just useless Red Tape. The Red Tape produced under the Obama years has had a definite negative impact on jobs (just think about the blocks to the keystone pipeline). You may like the regulations but the workers "left behind" pay a price, in blue-collar jobs that are blocked. http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2015/05/red-tape-rising-six-years-of-escalating-regulation-under-obama. There are also macro-economic effects, and technological improvements (like fracking) that impact jobs. So, I am not blaming all the lost jobs on the current administration - but they have to accept that their good intentions have had bad effects for many of the now angry voters.
Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
Regulation costs (per your link) is $80 billion for Obama and $30 billion for Bush II. The $80 billion pales in comparison to the Great Recession toll: $2 trillion lost GDP; $7 trillion lost property value; $11 trillion stock market losses; $3 trillion retirement account decline; 12 million lost jobs, etc. (http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/article/how-much-did-the-financial-crisis-cost/)
J Cosgrove
1 year 11 months ago
Do you want to discuss what caused the Financial Crisis. I could make a case that Obama had more to do with it then Bush, though Bush is certainly partially to blame through his HUD secretary. For example, which senator was the biggest recipient of contributions from the largest holder of bad mortgages? Who sponsored Obama's introduction into Congressional Black Caucus? Answer, the largest holder and sponsor of bad mortgages. What percentage of mortgages were bad held by the GSE's and who were the biggest supporters of the GSE's. Who did Obama appoint as the leader of his search for a vice president? What relationship did this man have with bad mortgages? Maybe you want to take a shot at the answers. Please don't say it was the cost of the Iraq war or the low rates of the Fed or the deficits caused by the tax cuts. That is all nonsense. And don't say Bush inherited a surplus which he squandered. He actually inherited a recession. But that is not relevant either.
Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
What caused the 2008 Financial Crisis? In 2014, Robert Lenzner wrote in Forbes “…a group of the largest banks in the world, the very ones Uncle Sam spent big bucks on to save in 2008, have…a quarter of a trillion dollars so far in…fines for engaging in some of the very behavior that required they be bailed out.” (http://www.forbes.com/sites/robertlenzner/2014/08/29/too-big-to-fail-banks-have-paid-251-billion-in-fines-for-sins-committed-since-2008/#3472b2f9107e)
J Cosgrove
1 year 11 months ago
I suggest you analyze the article you linked to and discuss how it relates to the Financial Crisis and the Great Recession. You tend to quote statistics without any content to their implications and cherry pick articles. I am not sure how much you understand. At least you have stopped mentioning Glass Steagall which had nothing to do with anything and which some liberal economist said helped ameliorate the Financial Crisis as opposed to causing it.
Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
Big banks were fined a quarter trillion dollars for behavior requiring the 2008 taxpayer bailout. Years of bank deregulation, including the end of Glass-Steagall, reduced bank accountability to a point where all that remained was “too big to fail”.
J Cosgrove
1 year 11 months ago
How much did the so called "bail out" cost the taxpayer? The answer is zero because all was paid back with interest. It was actually one of the best investments the government has made in a long time. The TARP program was a drastic intervention and fought by most Republicans who wanted the banks to take the losses but supported by nearly every Democrat. It solved the short term liquidity problem that could have devastated the economy. It was charged against the budget in 2009 but the repayment of the loans was counted as income for the budget in subsequent years actually reducing the budget deficit in these later years. This distorted what was actually happening with the deficits.
Douglas Fang
1 year 11 months ago
For me and for most people around me, the Great Recession happened under Bush’s watch and therefore, he should bear full responsibility for this. It is under Obama’s watch that America regains most of the lost ground and I really appreciate that. Saying anything else, i.e. “… I could make a case that Obama had more to do with it then Bush…” is just a plain and clear cut lie and deception. No more no less. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Causes_of_the_Great_Recession (tons of good references…) It is very strange for someone who keeps coming to this site and keeps on denying and distorting historical facts, trying to rewrite history... What is going here? We are not fools!
J Cosgrove
1 year 11 months ago
Thank you for supporting my point of view. All you have are ad hominem arguments. You have called me a liar a couple times on this thread but present nothing to back what you believe. Your answers are flip remarks about rewriting history or that you are not a fool. The reference you provide says nothing about how President Bush had anything to do with the 1) The Financial Crisis and 2) the so called Great Recession. I suggest you search for Bush's name in the article. You will find it just once and then it refers to people in his administration By the way they (Financial Crisis and Great Recession) are different in case you did not know that. The Financial Crisis was a short but very serious episode in our financial history that started in early September 2012 and was essentially a run on the bank phenomenon that resulted in a lack of liquidity amongst the big lenders, mainly banks, but other institutions as well. It threatened to stop all economic activity in the US and around the globe. Organizations depend on short term lending to pay bills such as salaries and costs for inventory and investment. The entities that usually do this were insolvent or unwilling to make these loans which could have paralyzed the country. Imagine all salaries being suspended and payments to suppliers for materials to run your organization. This crisis was over by Thanksgiving or shortly thereafter. No one knew it at that moment because the system is so complex that it was not known till about 3 months later when one could look back to see what activity had taken place in the September to early December period. The so called Great Recession was a result of this as businesses and individuals had lost confidence in the system and restrained their economic activity. This has a much longer effect. Companies laid off workers, pulled back on investment which has secondary and tertiary affects on economic activity and employment. This is the common scenario in an economic downturn. One thing missing in 2008 and subsequent years was housing activity. Normally part of any rebound from recession, the housing market was moribund for obvious reasons. I suggest you read the reference you provided and if you want to discuss the hundreds of causes of the Financial Crisis and subsequent recession, I will gladly do so. It has about 17,000 words or about 58 pages of discussion of the causes of the Great Recession. In essence the cause of the Financial Crisis and Great Recession was the issuance of bad mortgages. If the mortgages had been sound, there never would have been a crisis. There might have been a recession because recessions have many causes. In fact the recession started before the Financial Crisis. It is possible to discuss how everything interacted and that would be useful. But don't call people liars and not show how they are lying. I have read about 25 books on the economic issues surrounding the period 1990-2010 and am aware of most that went on. Lots of them have agendas but it is possible to sort out what happened and why. But never completely because no one truly knows. But one truth pops out, few bad mortgages and no one would noticed the crisis because there would have been no crisis. There still would have been a recession but recessions come and go. And oh yes, did Obama support the policies that led to bad mortgages. Yes, he did while senator.
Douglas Fang
1 year 11 months ago
J – I want to apologize first if I use some kind of straight language. You have a long history on this site of denial on many subjects. Perhaps you feel that if you read a lot of books, then you can avoid of trap of bestowing on yourself an illusion of having perfect knowledge. It is quite opposite, the more books you read, the more you fall in the trap of “confirmation bias”, and the more you are convinced in your distorted views and knowledge. Here are some examples: 1. “Laudato si” – You criticized the Pope of being naïve to fall into the hoax of climate change. You also attacked the Pope for criticizing capitalism. In fact – it seems that you are the one who are so ignorant and prejudiced on both of these topics 2. Evolution – You criticized a prominent professor after his interview on this site for believing in “natural” evolution – Again, it shows a staggering degree of your shortsightedness on this subject. 3. Diversity – You lamented that multicultural and diversity is some kind of moron and it degrades the culture of White Western America. I want to borrow the statement from the Games of Throne – “…John – you know nothing… John” 4. Financial Crisis, Great Recession, Iraq war, etc. – Everything seems to be the fault of Obama… I already asked you more than one time – what are your credentials? What articles did you publish in any Journals that passed rigorous peer reviews? Were you a speaker or did you sit on any panel discussion in any prestigious Conference or Symposium? If not, you are just an “arm chair” blogger that have a grandiose illusion of having the true answer to every subject. “…John – you know nothing… John”
J Cosgrove
1 year 11 months ago
I want to apologize first if I use some kind of straight language
Anything but straight language. Mostly distortions. Some incredible assertions. For example, the more one reads and learns the dumber and more biased one gets if one's opinion does not agree with you. Does that mean that you do not read anything? You are making one ad hominem attack after the other. If on any of these topics you mentioned, you want to discuss the content, let me know and we can have a polite discussion without personal attacks. But please, keep away from personal accusations. Such an approach indicates the other person is right or else you would be providing evidence for your point of view.
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
Doug - you really should change your way of arguing, and leave the ad hominem insults out of your comments. It really makes you look weak and blindly ideological. While I may not agree with every position of J Cosgrove, I have to admit he studies every issue and is worth listening to, not dismissing. It makes no sense to ask for credentials unless you are claiming you have them. Are you an expert on anything you blog about? If not, be more humble and just present your reasoning. Perhaps, you can explain why you are not just an armchair blogger, since you seem to consider that (along with reading lots of books) a disqualification to comment?
Douglas Fang
1 year 11 months ago
Tim & J - I’m all for a moderate and rational debate on this site. In the other hand, I don’t think it is worthwhile or fruitful to have a reasonable discussion with the two of you to any extent as you two have consistently shown a strong bias in favor of the Republican without giving any credit to the Democrat. This is not an honest approach for any meaningful debate. I’m deeply aware of the flaw of both sides as both are just human enterprises with all the imperfect nature of humanity. The truth can only be found in God. Usually, I avoid participating in any blogging as I see it as a useless activity because you cannot change any mind or let anyone change your mind. As you blog, you have to accept all kinds of abuse, attack, humiliation, etc. However, once in a while, I have to speak up as I see the comment is obviously misleading with the intention to deceive unsuspected or unsophisticated readers. For example, I know that you are a doctor, Tim, as you once claimed. I have read many, many of your comments on this site on many debates, especially with Michael B. and I still don’t know, to tell the truth, that you are really honest or you just try to manipulate people. A clear example is your recent attack on Obama administration by using the absolute number for deficit. As a person with your experience and knowledge, you should know too well that this is a complete “bogeyman” tactic throwing out as a bait. If you don’t even know that or cannot accept that, then I have nothing more to say… As I see it, the debates on this site is just a mirror of the debates happening at the national level – ugly, dirty, divisive, etc. http://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2016-05-08/get-ready-for-u-s-politics-to-reach-new-lows This is the very darkness upon this world that only the light of God can bring about some hope – if there is still hope.
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
Douglas - it is very sad that you must label those who disagree with you as liars or otherwise not worthy of thoughtful consideration of their views. Since Michael B. does not appear to be reading here to defend himself, I will not rehash those debates except to say that I honestly presented my understanding of what the Church teaches. As to your own charges, you seem to think that the absolute size of the deficit cannot in itself be a problem (which is an extreme view, to say the least), but I also responded with the relative relationship to the GDP and yet you then claimed I was changing my argument. I suggest that you think about why you do that.
Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
Perhaps there is little choice but to rewrite history. The Republican economic legacy is weak at best. Seven of the eight worst US economic contractions since 1856 had Republican control of either the White House or Congress or both. Demographics today are similarly unkind. Blue states have twice the Gross State product of Red states; while many Blue states should do even more, the left behind are even further behind in Red states.
Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
Are you suggesting Senator Obama was running the country during the Bush II presidency?
J Cosgrove
1 year 11 months ago
You are missing the irony of what i am saying. Nobody runs the economy let alone the president. The president and congress can have influence over the economy by making things easier or more difficult. The economy is the sum activity in the United States of hundreds of millions of people within and billions without of it. It is these people who as president or congress that can be influenced by government policy or laws. But most often they can do very little. The Financial Crisis and Great Recession were primarily caused by tens of millions of bad mortgages. Without this number of bad mortgages there would have been no Financial Crisis. There would also have been less economic activity prior to it too and maybe there might have been a recession but it would have been mild. Obama supported the policies that led to the bad mortgages just as did a lot of other politicians of both political parties. He was the receiver of the most money by Fannie Mae who was the biggest holder of the bad mortgages. Which leads to my tongue in cheek comment that I could make a case against Obama. To point the finger at Bush is disingenuous by anyone but especially by Obama when he talks about the economic policies of his predecessor. No one here seems to be interested in discussing what actually happened. It is all about trying to put blame on someone. So did Obama cause the Financial Crisis. Obviously not as an individual. But neither did Bush. And Obama's political leanings which were shared by many politicians were made government policy and implemented by the GSE's and directly led to the crisis. To give you an example, of the economy changing without any input by the president or congress, look at the late 90's when the internet exploded. Nothing Clinton or the Congress did had anything to do with it but this phenomenon cause great economic activity. I like to use the expression that Clinton was at the station when the great internet train came through. The country was the benefit of this train but neither Clinton nor congress had anything to do with it. And by the way the surpluses at the end of Clinton's term was caused by a tax cut in capital gains pushed on him by the Republican congress. When the stock market collapsed in late 2000 while he was still president there was a recession and a large reduction in capital gains taxes as you do not pay any taxes on stock losses. But people want to blame their political opponent on any spurious piece of information they can find.
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
Chuck - a timely article in the Wall Street Journal May 6 on the cost of Regulations http://www.wsj.com/articles/so-many-rules-so-few-opportunities-1462575067. The burden is far greater than I imagined. “Friday’s jobs report from the Labor Department brought the latest reminder that the U.S. economy isn’t creating opportunities like it used to. A separate report released this week goes a long way toward explaining why…Beltway rules are now imposing $1.9 trillion of annual costs on the U.S. economy…when combined with on-the-books federal spending, which is $3.9 trillion, the feds are taking a record-setting bite out of private commerce and wealth.” “ The annual tab for complying with directives from Washington is now larger than the entire economy of Russia. The cost of federal red tape amounts to nearly $15,000 per U.S. household each year...the regulatory burden falls particularly hard on small firms, which suffer higher compliance costs per employee than larger competitors. This may explain why readings of small-business hiring look even worse than for the economy as a whole.” “The Obama Administration was the first in American history to generate more than 80,000 pages of new and proposed rules in the Federal Register in a single year. Mr. Obama and his minions have now managed the feat three times. They are responsible for six of the top seven years of red-tape creation in the country’s history.”
Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
Tim, the Federal Register is published annually. The newest volume replaces the previous volume. The 2015 volume has 80,000 pages same as 2002 and 2008. Updates occur daily. Links: http://www.llsdc.org/assets/sourcebook/fed-reg-pages.pdf https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/search?conditions%5Bpublication_date%5D%5Bis%5D=05%2F11%2F2016&conditions%5Btype%5D=RULE
Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
Bush II left Obama a deficit of nearly 10% of GDP. Obama perhaps was fully aware that balancing the budget too quickly derailed a recovering economy in the 1937-1938 recession. (Mariner Eccles, Federal Reserve Chairman 1939). We now have an economy that may keep growing until at least 2020 according to Morgan Stanley. That would make the recovery from the Great Recession the longest U.S. expansion since World War II. For reference, annual deficits averaged 4.2% of GDP during Reagan's presidency. Obama’s 2015 deficit ran 2.5%.
Douglas Fang
1 year 11 months ago
This kind of argument is so distorted from the viewpoint of any honest economist. The deficit number by itself is meaningless unless it is compared to the size of the economy. As long as the GDP can grow faster relative to the deficit, then the deficit is good and actually desirable. As Chuck pointed out, the annual deficit relative to the size of the GDP has been shrinking for quite a while under Obama presidency. As a matter of fact, the deficit usually shrinks relative to the GDP under Democrat presidency compared to Republican presidency. You know the reason why… (hint: cut tax and and raise spending). Do you still remember the famous statement “Deficit doesn’t matter…” from VP Dick??? It was funny that I read the following article in the morning on Marketwatch before I ran into this comment on America Managazine: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/barack-obama-is-a-venture-capitalist-extraordinaire-2016-05-02#:kSVfEw8NsVtKpA I really like his last statement: "Crappy VC? Obama’s the MC of VCs. His legacy begins there". No wonder why his approval rating is quite good lately and is comparable to Mr. Reagan around this time in his presidency. Remember that MarketWatch is a subsidiary of Dow Jones, a property of News Corp and News Corp is the parent company of Fox News… again, you know what I mean.
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
Douglas – You can't hide behind Dick Cheney or the GDP growth either. The GDP has been very poor under Obama. Real GDP growth never got above 2.5% in any Obama year, whereas it reached 7.3% under Reagan at the end of his 1st term (1984).You say the deficit must be analyzed in proportion to the GDP. Well, the argument is the same if one looks at the annual deficit/GDP or National debt/GDP Ratio under Obama – they were also terrible for the years when Democrats controlled Congress and the White House. Clinton left us with 54% Debt/GDP, Bush with 67% and Obama brought that to 90% after just 2 years and 99% after 4 years. In 2015 it was still 101%, meaning our national debt is about the same as the production of the whole economy - hardly a good situation, and it would have been much worse if Obama’s proposed budgets had been approved.
Douglas Fang
1 year 11 months ago
I’m not hiding behind anything. The slow growth in GDP is a worldwide problem, not just for America. The root cause and solution is extremely complex. Anyone says that fixing the GDP growth problem has an easy solution is either a blatant liar or a complete lunatic. As a matter of fact, America has the best GDP growth of all the advanced countries since the Great Recession and the stock market is the best proxy for this scenario. After all the talks and shows, America is still the richest, strongest, and best country in the world. I have relatives and friends living in many places of the world – Asia, Europe, Australia, Canada, etc. Most of them really wish to have the opportunity to live and work here. I don’t think you are an economist or an investor. Most of them really appreciate the presidency of Obama. Again, talking as an investor, the fact is that the stock market usually perform better under a Democrat presidency. Go figure it out…
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
I hope you're not a "blatant liar or a complete lunatic," and I'm pretty sure you're not an economist either. Nor have you referenced your claim that "most" economists support Obama policies. So, best to leave that kind of language out of the discussion and just provide data or references to support your arguments. No one is claiming anything is easy, but economic regulations have major consequences (or else Communism and full-blown socialism wouldn't have failed so badly). It is not surprising that the US has better growth than many near-socialist European economies, because their regulations are even more onerous and their taxes higher, except in Ireland, which has a corporate tax rate of <15% and a GDP this year of 7.8%. That is a small nation. But, GDP in India is 7.3% and China 6.9%. http://knoema.com/nwnfkne/world-gdp-ranking-2015-data-and-charts
Douglas Fang
1 year 11 months ago
Tim – I’m not calling you “liar or lunatic”… If you feel it that way, this is your own problem. My argument is that Obama economic policy is one of the best possible ones implemented in a dire scenario created by the Great Recession and he deserves credit for that. I have the stock market and the national wealth as the proof of that. On your part, you and other (you know who) keep on blasting Obama economic results without any good evidence except of the same old tired slogan – “…too much regulation….” – How do you know that if you get rid of these regulations and the economy will magically grow leap and bound? It sounds like voodoo magic to me. One more - I didn't say most economists "support" Obama policies, I said "appreciate"...
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
No, Douglas - Your language is not my problem. Nor my responsibility. You used the epithets on a phantom class of your opponents. You again provide no data to bolster you opinions yet below to Chuck, I linked to an article on the cost of regulations.
Douglas Fang
1 year 11 months ago
Tim – here are some data that you ask: Presidents and the U.S. Economy: An Econometric Exploration http://www.princeton.edu/~mwatson/papers/Presidents_Blinder_Watson_July2014.pdf Deficit spending http://www.politifact.com/punditfact/statements/2015/aug/27/occupy-democrats/liberal-group-blames-bush-raising-deficits-credits/ It is your style of argument that is circuitous and full of “bogey man” tactics that upset people: 1. Using an absolute number for deficit, i.e. 100s billion dollars to scare off people. 2. After I pointed out that the annual deficit needs to be compared to annual GDP to be meaninful – you then changed to “slow GDP” 3. After I pointed out that slow GDP is a worldwide problem, especially for advanced countries – you changed to “too much regulation” The problems with “too much regulation” argument are: - How much is it a drag to growth? - Is there any evidence that get rid of all such regulations will substantially improve GDP growth? - What is the unintended consequence of removing these regulations? Does it lead another problem with even higher cost? As usual – I’ll let you have the last word.
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
Douglas - thanks for offering me the last word. It is the normal course of an argument to add new components as one goes along. That is adding, not switching. So, 1) the absolute national debt is itself terrible ($19.2 Trillion today, many trillions more under Obama than all other presidents in the history of the nation), 2) this is because the annual deficit has been out of control, especially in the early Obama years, 3) the relative Debt and Deficit are also very bad, although the relative deficit has been getting smaller since the sequestration forced by the House, 4) the US is such a big nation that is contributes a lot to the "worldwide" problem and the global failure to efficiently reverse the 2008 downturn, and 5) if government play any role in the economy, it has to be in spending (see above), taxing (Obama has increased taxes), security, and laws (=regulations). They don't have too many other tools. Obama has increased spending and taxes, and regulation, and worsened security (almost everywhere). So, regulations have to play a substantial role, unless you blame his bad management of security. You may like the trade-off in more regulations for less jobs, but perhaps, you have kept your job and only others have lost theirs.
J Cosgrove
1 year 11 months ago
I didn't say most economists "support" Obama policies, I said "appreciate"
What policies are you referring to? The stock market is the result of the infusion of 3 trillion dollars by the Fed creation of money. Little of it went into economic activity but into the inflation of assets, primarily the stock market. Most of the money created ended up with the very rich and has exaggerated the so called income inequality. The financial crisis was over by Thanksgiving of 2008 before Obama was in office. It was mainly a problem of liquidity and was solved by TARP and some other arrangements made with the banks. However, all the financial markets did not know this till 5-6 months later and things were still sluggish. By that time there had been a massive sell off of assets, primarily stocks and people retrenched in their spending as some thought the world was ending. The Federal deficit in FY 2009 is usually assigned to president who was in office at the start of the fiscal year which was Bush. However, the expected deficit was about $400 billion. But as soon as the Democrat controlled house and senate got to the budget in late January 2009, this was changed and it ended up about $1400 billion and additional spending was really due to Obama, not Bush.. This was the so called stimulus which did almost nothing. Obama eventually had to admit there were no shovel ready jobs so the money went to his constituencies, essentially bribing votes. http://bit.ly/21ysqzA Given that the economy shrunk so much the meager rebound is hardly anything anyone would brag about. It is one of the smallest rebounds from any recession in the last 70 years. This is with the $3 trillion in new money and over $6 trillion in deficit spending. It is pathetic. By the way German economic growth has not gotten above 2% in the last 20 years and averages less than 1% growth during that time. It is the so called power house of Europe. We definitely do not want to become like any European country of any size.
Douglas Fang
1 year 11 months ago
J - There is no need to argue with someone who rewrites history.
J Cosgrove
1 year 11 months ago
Interesting response. I can back up anything I assert. I suggest you do the same.
Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
Outstanding link!
Chuck Kotlarz
1 year 11 months ago
A graph perhaps illustrates Trump's appeal to the “left behind”: http://politicsthatwork.com/graphs/median-income-red-blue-states
Crystal Watson
1 year 11 months ago
** Americans without college degrees who are unemployed or trying to get by with low-wage jobs won’t be receptive to the message “Yes, I know you’re hurting. But don’t worry. I will protect abortion rights.” ** I don't know why you assume people with less money and less options don't care about women's reproductive rights. One of the main reasons I will vote for Hillary is her consistent support over the years for women's rights ... most of those who are in poverty are women and children.
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
Crystal - Libertine men and rich "liberated" feminist women make up the pro-abortion movement. Women with less money tend to be much more pro-life, probably because they sympathize with the plight of the unwanted. In fact, Women in general have always been more pro-life than men. http://www.lifenews.com/2013/11/04/polling-data-consistently-shows-women-are-pro-life-on-abortion/
Crystal Watson
1 year 11 months ago
There was a 2016 Pew Forum study on abortion ... http://www.pewforum.org/2016/04/08/public-opinion-on-abortion-2/ ... which states that more than half of Americans think abortion should be legal. It also says most Catholics think abortion should be legal. Also says most Democrats think it should be legal. And also says that most women and most men both, believe it should be legal.
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
Crystal - you have to go deeper into the details of these polls to avoid this misinterpretation. The very same poll you linked to says only 24% of Americans think abortion should be legal in all circumstances (including partial birth abortion – the official position of Democratic Party, which I think you agree with). 33% say it should be legal in most cases. 24% say it should be illegal in most cases (the Republican majority position, which favor exceptions for rape, incest or serious health risk to the mother) and 16% say it should be illegal in all cases (the Catholic position). Only 23% of self-identifying Catholics think abortion is not a sin and all of these people approve of many things Catholicism teaches to be wrong. For a better idea of what self-identifying Catholics believe, there is this 2015 Pew Forum poll: http://www.pewforum.org/2015/09/02/u-s-catholics-open-to-non-traditional-families. This includes what the poll describes as non-practicing/non-believing “Cultural Catholics.” It is these people who favor abortion. Non-believing/non-practicing Catholics typically make up close to half of those who self-identify as Catholic. So, they cannot represent true Catholicism. it would be like assuming Richard Dawkins represented the Anglican faith of his youth.
Crystal Watson
1 year 11 months ago
I guess my point is that a majority of all groups think abortion should be legal in some or all circumstances, and that's the Democratic position too, so it *is* relevant to a majority of voters, whether they are poor or not, that Hillary is a supporter of women's reproductive rights. Only a small minority of all groups ... Catholics included ... agree with the church's stance of abortion always being illegal.
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
The Democratic view is that abortion should be legal in all circumstances, not in some situations. Any Democrat politician who has exceptions to abortion loses support of the party. Practicing/believing Catholics overwhelmingly agree that abortion is the killing of a human being and is a serious sin. You are mixing up practicing and non-practicing Catholics. You have made the argument that being against abortion is not Catholic, because the polls suggest otherwise, as if that mattered in determining truth. A majority never decides the truth or morality of an action. It is a false test. You wouldn't just follow the majority on deciding the morality or legality of capital punishment for criminals, and so it is wrong to suggest we should do it for capital punishment for the unborn. It's one thing to disagree with the teachings of the Catholic faith, as most do (because most are not Catholic). It's another to claim, as you have, that the Catholic Church's teaching against abortion is somehow not Catholic. You are not being honest with yourself.
Crystal Watson
1 year 11 months ago
No, I'm not arguing that because a majority thinks abortion is ok that means it necessarily is ok. I was originally responding to the article's writer when he wrote ... *** Americans without college degrees who are unemployed or trying to get by with low-wage jobs won’t be receptive to the message “Yes, I know you’re hurting. But don’t worry. I will protect abortion rights." *** ... about Hillary. By showing that a majority of people do want abortion to remain legal, even poor people, I was trying to refute his assumption that people with economic problems don't care about that. So, truce :)
L J
1 year 11 months ago
who are you to claim who represents "true" Catholicism? You have a long sordid, myopic, judgmental history of comments on these boards having the hubris to tell us who is a true vs a non-true Catholic. The moment you claim to state youre one of the "true" Catholics is all the witness we need to know you are far from it. . Show some humility and stop being so quick to label the goats vs sheep. You are not appointed by God to make those claims
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
Not sure where this comments relates to polls on "self-identifying Catholics" and I never made the jump from doctrinal error to goats on Judgment Day, as you imply. I do not represent "true" Catholicism, in any formal way. I FOLLOW or ADHERE to Catholicism as taught by the Church. It is the Catholic Church alone that has been promised protection from doctrinal error in faith and morals, not you or me, not any commentator or any theologian. We are only as "true" as when we agree with the Church. That is what true doctrinal humility means.
L J
1 year 11 months ago
"reproductive rights" are an oxymoron. The baby growing within a woman's body is not her body to extinguish. Abortion is nothing less than terminating life because of being self-centered. Embryology does not support the pro-aborts claims. From the moment of conception, life begins to evolve. Get informed. The arguments of Roe v Wade are flawded, were predicated on a poor understanding of embryology, and the pro-abort decisions are not based on science . Langman's Medical Embryology: 9781451113426: Medicine & Health Science Books @ Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/Langmans-Medical-Embryology-Thomas-Sadler/dp/1451113420 . Evolve
Tim O'Leary
1 year 11 months ago
Excellent Comment, Guillermo.
Crystal Watson
1 year 11 months ago
"The baby growing within a woman's body" .... At what point is it a "baby"? Most abortions take place at the stage where it is an embryo or a zygote. "Abortion is nothing less than terminating life because of being self-centered." ... Tell that to the 9 year old rape victim who was pregnant with twins and whose doctors said she needed the abortion to survive ... http://blogs.reuters.com/faithworld/2009/03/06/nine-year-olds-abortion-stirs-brazil-debate/ "From the moment of conception, life begins to evolve." ... The question isn't whether there is life there, it's whether there is a "person" there.

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