Economics

Geithner: Magical Intervention Leads to Invisible Recovery

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Why good afternoon, Mrs. Cleaver. Wall and I were just discussing how lovely it would be to borrow our way to solvency.

Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner tells the G-8 that the green shoots showing up from Beijing to Baton Rouge are the result of government initiative:

Where we have seen improvements, they are the result of the unprecedented scope and  intensity of policy actions to support demand and financial repair.  The coordinated recovery programs set in motion in the context of the G-20 meetings helped stem the sharp erosion in business and consumer confidence and have begun to turn the global economy around.

The improvement in conditions is a tribute to the power of cooperation.  Central banks moved together, helping to dampen liquidity pressures.  Fiscal programs were more effective because they were done on a broad scale across the major economies.

Full speech here. Everybody knows the only way to fight flapdoodle like this is to ask the tough questions and post the answers on YouTube, but it would still be nice to see Geithner asked to make even a token effort at demonstrating either cause or effect. What are these improvements, other than a slight and still too-early-to-call slowing of the rate of economic decline? Have the zombie banks returned to life? Are all those buyers of U.S. Treasuries creating growth that is somehow stopping stagnation? Is there any reason, other than Geithner's assertion, to believe all this activity by central banks is building the economy on rock that we keep hearing about?

Lucky for us, Geithner has his toughest interlocutor right in the White House janitor's closet. Vice President Joe Biden today tried to do some ex-post-facto expectations managment around the useless American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, and even claimed that our old friend Everyone "guessed wrong" on unemployment numbers. (Oh really?)

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  1. Everybody knows the only way to fight flapdoodle like this is to ask the tough questions and post the answers on YouTube

    He is SO going to sue you, Tim. You should check his blog for the latest. We all should, every day!

    BakedPenguin, please post his picture again.

  2. The stimulus was never about the economy. It was always about using the crisis as an excuse for Democratic constiuencies to loot the treasury. Now, the economy is not turning around and the marks are starting to get wise. People are starting to ask uncomfortable questions. And eventually it will dawn a few of the less braindead leftist that TARP, escalating the war in Afghanistan and the porkulus took all the money that was there to be used for socialized medicine and rolling back welfare reform. When that happens it should be really entertaining.

  3. I doubt any of them will blame Obama John. The man can do no wrong.

    And Joe Biden is a goddamn idiot. Many, many people predicted that the stimulus wouldn’t stimulate anything except Dem interest groups.

  4. Joe Biden is a moron. Yes, lots of people were saying the stimulus would fail. Even the CBO admitted that it would destroy more jobs through increased debt in the long run than it created in the short run.

  5. Shut the fuck up, Lone… Tim?!?

  6. It really is nice to see Biden shooting down Obama’s promises. I was beginning to worry that they really believed all this socialist nonsense they’ve been spouting. It’s good to see them acting as individuals, and not some hideous “group think” communist monster.

  7. And Joe Biden is a goddamn idiot.

    It will not be long before Obama does the

    *slaps own forehead* “What was I thinking when I picked this guy for VP?”

    If he hasn’t already. George HW Bush likely commiserates.

  8. “If he hasn’t already. George HW Bush likely commiserates.”

    No J sub D. Dick Cheney is the evil super genius who ruled the world. Bush was the idiot. You need to get with the program here.

  9. “It’s good to see them acting as individuals, and not some hideous “group think” communist monster.”

    I wouldn’t consider Biden part of the inner circle. He is just the stupid kid they send to funerals.

  10. The scary thing is, the idea of government stimulus comes from Maynard Keynes but he would vomit all over Obama’s stimulus.

    In the 1930’s, people saved a lot and when times got they saved even more. A lot of people still kept significant amounts of money in their homes. Keynes reasoned that the government should borrow that money and put it to work. With 80 years hindsight we see that Keynes was overly simplistic (at best) but at least he was correct that there was money to be had.

    Today, the economic decline is driving by extensive debt and over borrowing in the form of mortgages and other forms of consumer debt. Unlike FDR, Obama can’t borrow hoarded money and put it to work because there is no hoarded money. The only thing that Obama can do is loot money headed for investment and spend it on government instead.

    Worse, his plans to raise taxes, fees, emissions credits, regulation etc put him in the shoes of Herbert Hoover who raised taxes all around when the Great Depressions started.

    I came of age during the late 70’s and I don’t want to go back to that dismal America but it looks like everyone who isn’t an Obamaphile is just along for the ride right now.

  11. Have the zombie banks returned to life?

    Ally Bank.

    Questions?

  12. In one of the lesser noticed scandals over the past week, the CEO of the American Bankers Association Ed Yingling (presumably not related to the fine, fine beer) accused GMAC essentially of using TARP money to fund its subsidiary Ally Bank in order to advertise/provide markedly higher deposit interest rates than prevalent market rates. The last is in violation of a May 29 decree by the FDIC, barring weaker banks from paying interest rates out of line with local markets to keep lenders from taking on excessive risk. Long story short, GMAC, troubled bank extraordinaire and proud recipient of beacoup TARP bux has been doing just that, and the ABA would not take it any more, sending a missive to the one and only Sheila Bair, complaining about this injustice. Of course, Sheila who is busy backstopping the entire western world’s financial system couldn’t give a rat’s ass about this particular problem, however, one person who did was Al de Molina, CEO of GMAC.
    Taking Yingling’s criticism down the wrong path, de Molina concluded snidely: “You might want to assist your members in figuring out how they are going to compete in the new market place rather than ask regulators to direct Ally Bank to pay its depositors less competitive rates.”

    -Zero Hedge, via teh *awesome* LOLFed

  13. Shannon, I can’t tell whether this administration wants to bring us back to the 1970’s or the 1930’s. If it’s simply energy crises and stagflation, that’s one thing. If they pass cap-and-trade, we are looking at a full on trade war, possibly followed by a real war. Can’t wait to find out what happens.

  14. No J sub D. Dick Cheney is the evil super genius who ruled the world. Bush was the idiot. You need to get with the program here.

    HW, not W. But you’re not the first to be tripped up by the Bush family’s unimaginative appellation practices.

  15. Tulpa,

    My mistake. The whole everyone for 50 generations has the same name is a pretty annoying Brahmin habbit.

    Quayle is a Rhoads Scholar compared to Biden. All Quayle ever did was once not correct a spelling card that spelled potatoe wrong. Biden has said more stupid shit in three months than any other VP in my lifetime said in four years.

  16. oh my goodness, the apologia continues apace.

    you read the list and decide whether Biden has surpassed Quayle. All I will say is “John is lying again”:

    Snopes and Quayle.

  17. “I love California, I practically grew up in Phoenix.”

    Dan Quayle.

  18. Actually, John, he “corrected” the kid who spelled potato right. If I were you I would use the excuse that Quayle was secretly a Tolkienesque medievalist who preferred words to be spelled as Chaucer did.

  19. He he

    Dan Quayle spells it Rhoads…

  20. Actually, TAO, I have relatives in Phoenix, and they love California — or more precisely, they love that Californians are mostly located in California, freeing the desert up for more sensible folks. They’re kinda peeved about the ones who move to Phoenix and try to turn it into California, though.

    I doubt, though, that Quayle was saying anything quite so ironic. Quayle is an idiot, as is Biden. I don’t have strong feelings about which is more inept and hapless.

    I would be delighted to replace Obama with Biden, though, since if you’re gonna try to screw things up, inept and hapless is a virtue. Someone like Obama can do a lot of damage before the masses finally get a clue and cut off his allowance and impose a curfew.

  21. “It will not be long before Obama does the

    *slaps own forehead* “What was I thinking when I picked this guy for VP?””

    My exact quote here on H&R the day he picked him still stands imo:

    “WTF?”

  22. “Hawaii is a unique state. It is a small state. It is a state that is by itself. It is a-it is different than the other 49 states. Well, all states are different, but it’s got a particularly unique situation.”

  23. I can’t think of any activity more productive on a Sunday than debating which is the bigger idiot: Quayle or Biden. Oh wait, about a billion just occurred to me.

  24. Sorry, Epi, just got to the thread – here’s Lonewhacker. (And anonymity guy too, for good measure).

    As for your comment about him suing, well, you see what we had to do to divert his wrath.

  25. The Treasury Department uses a secret, scientific method to determine how TARP money is spent, here is how they do it.

  26. I’ll have you to understand that neither Dan Quayle nor Joe Biden were the biggest embarrassments in the history of the, er, “office,” you hopeless, hysterical hypochondriacs of history.

  27. Yeah they’re building the economy on rock alright. Crack rock.

  28. oh my goodness, the apologia continues apace.

    you read the list and decide whether Biden has surpassed Quayle. All I will say is “John is lying again”:

    Who are you Neu Mexican posting as AO. You are normally not just a dick AO. I don’t think calling me a liar was called for. Sorry you are apparently such a nasty fuck.

  29. Holy shit Baked, that was even better than the Underzog toon (and I say that as a character in the latter!).

    LW in a Lone Ranger costume. The little dog. The anonymity guy. The in-betweener looking guy from star trek. And the Natalie Merchant poster in the background. What detail!

    Thanks, that was great, kudos.

  30. Frankly, John, your partisan hackery is starting to piss me off. Every time I see Biden on television, I talk about what a dumb motherfucker he is. But he hasn’t surpassed Quayle by a longshot.

  31. Ally Bank.

    I dare you to find creepier commercials. They read like political ads for fourth-grade class president, except Obama’s not in Mussel-land and his ears aren’t quite so big yet.

  32. Dang! We blew a couple of trillion and all we get is a Timmy Geithner bobble-head doll?

  33. Spiro Agnew’s Ghost | June 14, 2009, 6:47pm | #

    +1

    MNG | June 14, 2009, 8:20pm | #

    +2

  34. TAO – John’s not a liar, he’s just a delusional partisan idiot. The two are sometimes difficult to discriminate between.

    “What a waste it is to lose one’s mind.” Who knew Quayle was talking about John?

  35. John’s not a liar, he’s just a delusional partisan idiot

    FTFY.

  36. AO,

    Quale hasn’t been in office in like 20 years. Henry Wallace was a communist and an idiot. But I don’t see how he is relevent. Biden an embarassment. Why a guy who hasn’t served in 20 years is somehow relevent I don’t know. It is just that with people like you no criticism of a Democrat can come without an equivication. Obama could be molesting children and you would have to point out that there were rumors Nixon did that, as it it matters now. But, I am the partisian. I am sorry your people nominated an economic illiterate and a moron for President and VP. Get over it. And if you don’t like what I post, tough shit.

  37. what fantasy world do you reside in where I’m a partisan Democrat? Here’s one dollar to buy a clue, John: not every who thinks you’re on Republican Kool-Aid is a Democrat.

    And if you don’t like what I post, tough shit.

    Likewise, little man.

  38. BATON ROUGE!!!
    B-Town forever baby!

  39. Are all those buyers of U.S. Treasuries creating growth that is somehow stopping stagnation?

    Seeing as their cash is now tied up in treasuries rather than being used to create jobs, I would say rather the opposite.

  40. Likewise, little man. *blubber* sticks and stones *wipe nose on sleeve*

    FTFY. HTH.

  41. Ha! This from the guy who doesn’t even have the bravado to allow his posts to be linked to. I don’t need your help either.

  42. Everybody knows the only way to fight flapdoodle like this is to ask the tough questions and post the answers on YouTube…

    Har har har.

    Richness. Well done.

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