Great Recession

"I wish that people would stop making this statement. It just opens Keynesian economics up to ridicule."

|

No thanks, George. We found Lord Keynes' original idea quite delightful enough.

A few years ago only members of the radical goldbug fringe were asking whether the government should stop dumping money into a giant hole. Now the idea has become so mainstream that billionaire currency speculator George Soros had to take a break from reorganizing the world's financial system at the New Bretton Woods Conference to address deficit concerns. 

Soros told Bloomberg news Friday that the deficit hawks may "abort the very fragile economic recovery you are currently enjoying and push the economy once again into a slowdown or recession." 

"Enjoying" is a strange word to apply to the ongoing non-recovery. But Soros is at least concerned that all this spending be done correctly: 

"In my opinion the country could actually absorb some more debt in order to get the economy going," Soros told Bloomberg. "But it's a question of how to use that money. If you just use it to reinforce consumption you don't really get any benefit of it. But if you were to use it for building infrastructure or to improve productivity, then I think it would be a very wise thing to do."

Not so, says the Wendy the Snapple Lady of blogging, Duncan "Atrios" Black. Here's the Eschatonian path to prosperity in a nutshell, cited with seeming approval by Brad DeLong: 

All Spending Is Good Spending 

At least from the perspective of the economy and unemployment. This isn't true in normal times, but we are not in normal times. If we can't act think of anything better to do with the money, we should be paying people to dig holes and other people to fill them up again. Or, perhaps, in more modern terms, pay people to build freedom bombs and other people to conduct controlled explosions of them. There are better or worse ways to spend money, but it still the case that if you cut spending on basically anything it will be a drag on the economy.

I never like to bigfoot a conversation, but this discussion is over. Ezra Chaitglesias and company can continue thumping the tub about low inflation and continuing federal solvency, but the fact that President Obama and the Republicans are now – however unpersuasively – competing to be seen as more fiscally responsible gives the game away. If you're still trying to get another stimulus rain dance going, you're just not in the debate anymore. 

In the eight days preceding the $38.5 billion deficit reduction deal, the national debt of the United States increased $54 billion. The prices of gold and corn have never been higher. Even the L.A. Times has figured out that inflation is upon us (though strangely the paper had to send a reporter to Virginia to get the news).  One in four U.S. households can now claim zero or negative net worth. Nationwide student debt is closing in on the $1 trillion mark. Even if we cut all defense and domestic discretionary spending to zero, we would just barely balance the current federal budget. Nobody has wanted our debt for quite some time now. 

Like, I suspect, many of the folks who spend their days contemplating the bottomless evil of George Soros, I have only a vague idea what he actually does. But it makes sense that a wealthy-but-mortal man who deals in currency markets would focus on GDP while ignoring the actual U.S. economy's slow grind to a halt. For more local actors like DeLong, Paul Krugman, Black and the rest, there's a more immediate problem, and it's not coming from lunatics like me but from observable reality. The argument for Keynesian spending has been defeated in the court of your own two eyes. That will take some re-adjustment for believers. The title of this post comes from one of DeLong's commenters, who is concerned about the long-term discrediting of economic intervention. But it's too late to do anything about that; to make Keynesianism look ridiculous would be like blacking the chimney

NEXT: The New York Times Groks The Trouble With Charley (and Bullshit Nobel Laureates)

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  1. I never like to bigfoot a conversation

    STEVE SMITH RAPE YOU FOR YOUR RACISM!

  2. Well, you have to admit, it does make A LOT of sense.

    http://www.total-privacy.it.tc

  3. I was hoping for another Steinbeck story -while you’re at it can we save Cleveland again?

    1. Guess who just made poopy again?

      I DID!

  4. The title of this post comes from one of DeLong’s commenters, who is concerned about the long-term discrediting of economic intervention.

    That ship sailed a long time ago. This guy will never change, so I don’t know what he’s concerned about.

  5. One of the great things about running a hedge fund is that you don’t have to be right on everything.

    You just have to be right more often than you’re wrong.

    Running a hedge fund isn’t like running fiscal policy. When you’re wrong about fiscal policy, everything turns to fail.

    And Soros is so wrong about this. The left loves having a guru to run up the flag pole every once in a while to tell us fiscal conservatives how wrong we are. Soros is one; Buffet is one; Krugman is one…

    Squandering what would be consumer discretionary income on government largess–as the solution to our lack of consumption?

    I’m am not impressed by that argument no matter who makes it.

    1. Soros is not making that argument. Debt spending is spending that is not paid for – thats why its called debt spending.

      1. “Soros is not making that argument. Debt spending is spending that is not paid for – thats why its called debt spending.”

        So where’s the money for that debt ultimately coming from?

        It’s coming out of our paychecks, isn’t it?

        Is there some other magical place I’ve never heard of?

        When you say “debt spending” that is in fact “discretionary income”–every penny of debt spending ultimately comes out of the pockets of consumers and businesses.

        Squandering the discretionary income of consumers and businesses on government largess through “debt spending” is not the solution to our lack of consumption.

        And I can’t think of any source of “debt spending” that doesn’t ultimately come out of discretionary income –taxes on imports aren’t even an exception.

        That comes out of the pockets of consumers and businesses too.

        1. Maybe you’re suggesting inflation is a way to finance “debt spending” that doesn’t ultimately come out of our discretionary income?

          Because I’d argue that’s baloney too!

          1. Is there some other magical place I’ve never heard of?

            Economic growth.

            Imagine George Soros’ had a doppelganger who was right wing and argued for tax cuts that increase the debt by the exact same amount. Are you saying that tax cuts will be “[s]quandering the discretionary income of consumers and businesses”? Of course not, but the debt would be the same and it come from the same place and be owed by the same people.

            1. Tax cuts are not spending…unless you think the government owns the money they are letting us keep.

              1. The Book of Rand, Chapter 7, Verse 15.

                The Self be with you.

              2. Debt is debt.

            2. Economic growth comes from investment, productivity gains, etc…

              It comes from people and businesses having more discretionary income at their disposal–not by spending their discretionary income on government largess.

              “Are you saying that tax cuts will be “[s]quandering the discretionary income of consumers and businesses”? Of course not, but the debt would be the same and it come from the same place and be owed by the same people.”

              There’s this other thing that can happen–it’s called “spending cuts”.

              While it is true that tax cuts can and sometimes do increase the deficit–that isn’t always the case. Sometimes cutting taxes actually increases tax receipts!

              No really.

              Regardless, the proposal they’re trying to put on the table isn’t even about cutting taxes! I certainly didn’t say anything about cutting taxes…

              The proposal on the table is about deficit spending–they want to solve our problems by spending what would be our discretionary income on government. George Soros is arguing for spending more of what would be our discretionary income on government.

              I’m arguing against that.

              If you want to talk about tax cuts? Yes, leaving businesses and consumers to keep more of their discretionary income is definitely one prescription for growth. When businesses can keep more of their profits, they tend to engage in activity that likewise enhance their bottom line. They expand. They hire more people. They make themselves more competitive and efficient by investing in capital equipment…

              When consumers can keep more of their own money? They tend to spend more of it. They save some more too–but recapitalizing banks isn’t exactly bad news considering all the problems in the banking sector.

              In times of economic sluggishness, the more we can do to help businesses and consumers keep more of their discretionary income, the better it is.

              Conversely, squandering more of our discretionary income on government largess should be avoided–especially in times of economic sluggishness.

            3. “Economic growth” sounds an awful lot like the “price appreciation” a lot of suckers believed in when they took out mortgages they now can’t afford.

              1. There’s no question that some people use their money unwisely.

                There’s also no question about whether the government would squander almost all of it unwisely.

                Do you know what happened to all the money the TARP recipients paid back?

                1. Ken,

                  George Soros wants stimulus. George Soros wants the government to borrow money to spend buying services from business. George Soros wants to provide business with more discretionary income. Because according to Keynes this will stimulate growth.

                  While it is true that tax cuts can and sometimes do increase the deficit–that isn’t always the case. Sometimes cutting taxes actually increases tax receipts!

                  No really.

                  I was meaning reducing taxation receipts.

                  There’s this other thing that can happen–it’s called “spending cuts”.

                  These are a reduction in the amount the government spends with business. Spending cuts reduce discretionary income.

        2. The question that never comes up is: We had a BIG deficit prior to this even BIGGER deficit. If deficits are so wonderful, why did we have a recession?

          Of course, these people believe deficits are an unalloyed good – the deficit just isn’t BIGGEST enough! why trillions when we can spend Kazillions!
          Funny how Kenesians never take there analogy of hole digging to its logical conclusion – everybody starves to death because you can’t eat holes (heh), I mean holes in the ground, or filled in holes in the ground.

          1. Funny how Kenesians never take there analogy of hole digging to its logical conclusion – everybody starves to death because you can’t eat holes (heh), I mean holes in the ground, or filled in holes in the ground.

            Maybe that’s because Keynesians don’t know their asses from holes in the ground.

      2. I would gladly engage in debt spending for a hamburger today.

    2. In my opinion the country could actually absorb some more debt in order to get the economy going. But it’s a question of how to use that money. If you just use it to reinforce consumption you don’t really get any benefit of it. But if you were to use it for building infrastructure or to improve productivity, then I think it would be a very wise thing to do.

      Soros’s argument is about the difference between consumption and investment, or at least for time-consistency: paying a car off over 5 years makes sense if that’s how long you intend to use, paying lunch off over 5 years means you’re subsidizing current expenditures at the expense of later ones. In other words, shifting consumption forward with no change in productive capacity is inefficient. We can boost GDP by forcing people to spend now, but it’s an unsustainable increase.

      It’s still an argument for intervention, but one that’s considerably less sanguine about “priming the pump” arguments.

      1. It’s actually the original Keynes.

        The present-day money-hole version is sort of a degenerate version invented by partisans and opportunists who have most likely never read a word of Keynes.

        1. If the Treasury were to fill old bottles with bank-notes, bury them at suitable depths in disused coal-mines which are then filled up to the surface with town rubbish, and leave it to private enterprise on well-tried principles of laissez-faire to dig the notes up again (the right to do so being obtained, of course, by tendering for leases of the note-bearing territory), there need be no more unemployment and, with the help of repercussions, the real income of the community, and its capital wealth, would probably become a good deal greater than it actually is.

          The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money, Chapter 10 Section 6

          1. This.

            Soros is going to lengths to identify the conditions in which debt could be used wisely. We can disagree on what would make it wise (and I do, as there is scant evidence the US has improved productivity via national debt issuance). However, the fundamentalist Keynesian argument has no conditions.

      2. Soros makes his money on the trade. It’s a short-term view as far as I’m concerned. The people who make long-term bets by investing capital in productive capacity tend not to be Keynesians, unless of course they’re rentseeking bastards like Buffett and GE.

  6. Does this article really need a pic of Soros’ vampiric mug?

    1. Oh. I thought that was Beelzebub.

  7. If you’re still trying to get another stimulus rain dance going, you’re just not in the debate anymore.

    Give it a couple of years and an electoral cycle, the rains will come again.

  8. Here’s the Eschatonian path to prosperity in a nutshell

    EWIGE BLUMENKRAFT UND EWIGE SHLANGENKRAFT!

  9. I am also a huge supporter of the money fire.

    http://d0000000d.com/gallery/?…..chment=201

  10. Soros fund’s largest holding is GLD. Hmmm?

    1. Well of course it is! He’s evil, not stupid.

      -jcr

    2. Surprise, surprise, surprise!

    3. Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!

    4. Surprise, surprise, surprise!

    5. Soros fund’s largest holding is GLD.

      Surprise, surprise, surprise!

  11. Ezra Chaitglesia

    Heh heh – I like

  12. Krugman-DeLong-Black Theory on how WWII ended the Great Depression:

    Going into heavy debt to make things with no lasting value doesn’t cause prosperity, but going into super-heavy debt to make things with no lasting value does cause prosperity.

    Broken Windows Theory on how WWII ended the Great Depression:

    If the last glazier in town switched from making windows to devices for breaking windows four years ago, and those four years have been full of rival gangs out breaking each others’ windows, there will be a hell of a lot of business for the glazier when he switches back to making windows, even if business was slow five years ago.

    1. Thanks to ousted CEA chairwoman Christina Romer, we have strong evidence that even the Broken Windows version of this theory is incorrect. When wartime spending was withdrawn, the economy barely experienced a recession. And in fact the recession began before even VE Day, so it’s an open question how much demobilization even had to do with it. Sixteen million men were returned to the workforce in 1945-1946 and easily absorbed, which you’d never expect if intervention had been absorbing excess supply or whatever the Keynesian theory is. If anything, there was massive demand that had been suppressed by diverting the U.S. economy into the sterile business of destruction for more than four years.

      1. there was massive demand that had been suppressed by diverting the U.S. economy into the sterile business of destruction for more than four years.

        And none of that demand could be met by many countries – first because they were rebuilding themselves, and secondly because of lot of them rebuilt themselves into communist economies.

        Foreign central planners were a gift that kept on giving to the US economy. Central planners destroy economies from within and inadvertently strengthen the economies without. Now the tables have turned – the US has more central planning than anywhere else and the economy is grinding down because of it – and the proposed solution is more central planning. Until we start treating central planning as the intellectual excrement it is, thing will only get worse. Unfortunately, things will HAVE to get worse in order for the bulk of the people realize that central planning doesn’t work for populations over a couple thousand.

    2. Unfortunately, all too many people have been brainwashed into believing one of these two explanations. While a bit of Bastiat would go a ways to disabusing people of these pernicious notions, I would vote on handing these unfortunate souls a copy of Bob Higgs’s ‘Regime Uncertainty’.

  13. For more local actors like DeLong, Paul Krugman, Black and the rest, there’s a more immediate problem, and it’s not coming from lunatics like me but from observable reality. The argument for Keynesian spending has been defeated in the court of your own two eyes.

    This. This. This.

  14. if we have to spend the same stupid amount of money, can we at least vote to trade the wars on drugs & terror for a free national wifi network, a decentralization of our power grid & maybe block grants for improvements to our water system?

    1. ^^THIS^^

      We’re gonna be robbed without question. Can we at least not jail crminals with no victims nor kill people around the world, if it’s all the same?

    2. Fuck you

    3. NO!
      We must maintain the state and local public employee ranks at pre-Obama levels.

      Maybe hire a few more teachers “for the childrunz”.

      You ratbagging teafuckers will probably want to repair a bridge or two.

  15. This isn’t true in normal times, but we are not in normal times.

    “Normal times” being entirely subjective, which means this statement can be entirely true and entirely false all the time if times are never normal. And it provides a fallback for when your plan doesn’t work: it was less or more normal than you expected. It’s an amazingly worthless statement.

    A more empirical formulation would be, “when a measures for some combination of unemployment, output gap, recession length, etc. reach a certain level, even spending on ___ becomes economically productive.” I’d love to see someone try with that.

    If we can’t act think of anything better to do with the money, we should be paying people to dig holes and other people to fill them up again.

    Ah, and here we have the more palatable reiteration of the labor theory of value. It’s always better to pay people for leisure activities (which they inherently value) than work with zero product. Put another way, if I value my leisure time more than I and others value the product of my labor, forcing me to work creates a system-wide loss of wealth. In the proposed alternate universe, others enjoy the spectacle of my hole-digging, and I consider it useful job training, preferable to hanging around at home or with friends. ‘Kay.

    It boosts GDP, of course, but who considers GDP the end-all — or even a reliable indicator when it’s being heavily gamed — of wealth?

    1. building something useful > paying people unemployment benefits > paying people to dig holes.

  16. Also, where’s shrike? His Lord and Savior’s name was recited thrice in the article, plus Tim noted that gold’s at a record high.

    shrike|1.14.11 @ 5:27PM|#

    Gold down $25 today after a fall yesterday, btw.

    Any goldbug who feeds on Ron Paul’s bullshit CT concerning the Federal Reserve needs to get out soon.

    I predict $800 by Xmas Day.

    At the time of his prophecy, gold was trading at $1,360. It’s now at $1,456. December futures for gold are priced at $1,460.90 (gold is usually in tiny but real contango). I assume shrike has real money riding on this Sure Thing.

    (FWIW, I assume it trades sideways, maybe falls a little, and remains volatile until there’s a light at the end of the tunnel for the EU, US and Japan.)

    1. Those $25 dollar falls mean about as much right now as a $33 billion cut from a $1.5 trillion deficit. If gold does take a significant tumble, it won’t be down to $800 by Christmas–probably $1200, at the very floor. Hell, I wish I HAD bought at $800, I’d be able to pay off the rest of my student loan debt.

      Related, apparently Dimon tried shorting silver back when it was pushing $30, and now it’s around $40.

      QE has consequences.

      1. Why would you want to pay off student loan debt in view of the coming inflation?

  17. Plastic frames are also available such as item number 6430 and 7252. Eyeglass.com also has a good selection of vintage frames such as item EGMO6 and EGW 15.

  18. The title of this post comes from one of DeLong’s commenters, who is concerned about the long-term discrediting of economic intervention.

    Well, at least he and George Soros have half of their wits together.

    The notion that digging holes and filling them up again would improve the economy could only seem sensible to someone totally wrapped up in a perverted politicized version of Keynesianism. Even Keynes didn’t argue that. He argued (as Soros suggests) that the labor be put to some productive use – such as infrastructure. (Leaving aside the misallocation of resources and corruption that entails for now).

    Spending it on consumption only sounds good in theory until your realize that it’s coming out of investment. Basically the country is eating it’s seed capital. And of course, capital is the one thing that the banks are short on at the moment.

    The commenter is right that this degenerate Keynesianism give a bad name to all economic intervention. At least the original Keynesians wanted the money to be spent on something that would enhance production in the future.

    1. “And of course, capital is the one thing that the banks are short on at the moment.”

      I’m working on that

    2. If the Treasury were to fill old bottles with bank-notes, bury them at suitable depths in disused coal-mines which are then filled up to the surface with town rubbish, and leave it to private enterprise on well-tried principles of laissez-faire to dig the notes up again (the right to do so being obtained, of course, by tendering for leases of the note-bearing territory), there need be no more unemployment and, with the help of repercussions, the real income of the community, and its capital wealth, would probably become a good deal greater than it actually is.

      The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money, Chapter 10 Section 6

      1. Banning gas powered farm equipment works too.

  19. An example of “progressive” stupidity on economic matters, so ruinously powerful it actually burns a hole in the fabric of space-time, even as you watch:

    “The solution to the deficit is to put all of the unemployed back to work at their former salaries, and make the rich pay their fair share.”

    I shit you not.

    1. Hahahahahaha.

      Yes, all the unemployed real estate agents need to be put back to work, at their former salaries.

      In order to make this work, we’ll just have to impose an “individual mandate” that requires every American to purchase at least two houses. One to live in, and one as an investment property.

    2. This reads like something only a well intentioned college student could write.

      1. It’s typical progressive thinking.

        Utter lack of awareness that production has to be in some way matched to actual human needs.

        It’s just “give everyone a job!” with no consideration of how labor is allocated towards consumer demand.

        Just like the hole-digging meme. Complete obliviousness to the fact that human welfare is enhanced by what is produced, not the amount of labor being utilized.

  20. Mr. Boehner threatens to commit TREASON!

    You know I knew it was only a matter of time before the Tea Party and the GOP overplayed their hand. And now we have the Speaker of the House go on national TV and threaten to commit TREASON. He has said that he is willing to do something that he believes will cause grave harm to the United States of America. Worse then that, he has said that unless his demands are met he will knowingly allow disaster to befall America?.Good luck defending this one.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7IiV4YIEfIw

    1. Whatever you’re smoking in that video screed is rotting your brain.

      -jcr

      1. Maybe he just can’t handle his weed like the rest of us!

    2. Not raising the debt ceiling would force the shutdown of quite a bit of gov’t, it would not necessarily force a default as the interest obligations are built into the budget. Debt obligations can be paid with ongoing tax receipts.

      But if you are arguing that because in Obama’s America, the secured debt holders get screwed and the leeches get paid off in the case of a bankruptcy (GM), it would force a collapse of the global economy, you might be right. Now who’s treasonous?

      That said, what the hell happens when interest rates skyrocket and the gov’t cannot afford the interest payments? Theft by inflation is still theft.

    3. He has said that he is willing to do something that he believes will cause grave harm to the United States of America.

      LOL at this–you know what’s caused grave harm to the United States of America? The refusal of your boys Barry and Eric to enforce the law and prosecute blatant fraud during the housing bubble. THAT’S a greater treason than Boehner wanting to not extend the limit on the nation’s credit card.

      If the 1969 in your email handle was the year you were born, why are you displaying the intellectual capacity of a five-year-old?

      1. This word treason, I do not think it means what you think it means.

        1. Threaded comment fail. Meant to be to the OP.

  21. Tim, I know this is going to sound rediculous, but you still have to watch out for deflation. The government can still print money, but private debt markets are still in the $40T USD range. With the cost of living going up suddenly, there could be a wave of defaults, debt paydowns, or capital asset losses in markets that are net deflationary.

    After that, though, the federal debt should be closing that gap and I don’t think there will be any more bubbles that can be inflated without hyperinflation. We got one more collapse left in us.

    1. by watch out I mean “watch out on account of your rhetoric”. Deflation is what it is, it’s neither “good” nor “bad” inherently. It’s what you do with it and how you deal with to it that can be good or bad.

    2. You are correct. The total debt load has not really decreased because of the massive efforts to prevent it from doing so at the taxpayer’s expense. We are due for another implosion and if the gov’t responds in a similar manner, we are seriously fucked.

    3. Doesn’t sound ridiculous. The biggest asset most people own — their homes — is still deflating, as is the only asset most people actually like at this point — their smart phones. (Though I wouldn’t be surprised to see the cost of data plans going up.)

      At this point, even interventionists should see some value in deflation, because at least it indicates continuing fondness for the dollar. Since the Civil War sesquicentennial has arrived, you can look to the economic history of the Confederacy (nicely described in, of all places, M. Mitchell’s novel Gone With the Wind) to see what happens when you’ve got economic stagnation, a massive hole-in-the-ground government program, and worldwide rejection of your currency all at the same time.

      1. That Conferate example is maybe too Godwinesque. Just look to the 1970s to see why the anti-deflationmentarianists are misguided in their fixated horror of drops in CPI. As yonemoto notes, inflation and deflation are neither good nor bad. They’re just data.

        1. I mean hyperdeflation and hyperinflation can have effectively nothing but bad consequences, and induced inflation is certainly bad (as is induced, confiscatory deflation like in Argentina).

        2. Gone With The Wind? What – another hugely long, rambling novel to struggle through? Geez, next you’ll be expecting us to actually read the speeches in Atlas Shrugged. Aren’t there some kind of “graphic novel” versions of these works that we could look at instead?

      2. …hehe, I wouldn’t call deflation in the implosion scenario “a fondness for dollars” but rather “a realization that everything we own is crap”, x “uh, oh, future!”

  22. “But if you were to use it for building infrastructure or to improve productivity, then I think it would be a very wise thing to do.”

    Except the infrastructure that the feds are insisting on building are flashy projects of dubious actual utility such as high speed rail. Mundane infrastructure improvements which are useful don’t get quite the same pr for the politicos.

    Also, how can the government spend to improve productivity? Some improvementscan come about when the government has a definite technological problem in a focused project it is working on (like the space program). It tends to get lost in the weeds of corruption and featherbedding when working on abstract solutions the government has no real stake in.

    1. The argument for spending equalling economic growth assumes that central planners know best how to spend the money. And that assumption has been repeatedly disproven over the last century.

    2. and bridges to nowhere!

  23. All Spending Is Good Spending

    Becuase money is free. If two trillion is good, why wouldn’t ten trillion be that much better? If we would just borrow and print ten trillion a year, we could give every man woman and child in this country over 30,000 dollars a year. Wouldn’t that be great?

    I would call this kind of thinking superstitious, but that would be an insult to superstition.

    1. Why only $30,000???

      1. It is a nice round number

        1. Zero is a nice round number, too.

    2. What it is is a kindergatener’s understanding of money. Like when I was 4 and thought that being a cashier at a grocery store must be the best job in the world, because I thought that they got to keep all the money in the drawer at the end of the day; that’s the level of sophistication you’re looking at. Money– it’s just a lot of pieces of paper, special magic paper but paper nonetheless, so it can’t run out unless we run out of trees. Right?

      Of course my father set me straight on all of that just as soon as I voiced those beliefs. I guess not everyone’s parents bothered explaining.

      1. Are you sure it was your father and not the trenchcoat teabagger in the playground?

        1. Now we know why Edward/Dan T. is the way he is. Where did the naughty Tea Party man touch you, Hobie?

  24. Not so, says the Wendy the Snapple Lady of blogging, Duncan “Atrios” Black.

    Just in case you doubted this was written by Cavanaugh…

    Also, re: Soros. I wish he’d just spend his money on drug policy reform. I like his views on that far better than his economic views.

  25. “…abort the very fragile economic recovery you are currently enjoying…”

    This makes sense if by “recovery” he means “getting used to the new reality.”

  26. Hey Tim,

    You mad bro? Get out of my country please.

  27. Favorite lines in that Onion News Network piece (which I loved when it came out… and only gets better with time) =

    “MY FATHER WORKED TWO JOBS TO PUT MONEY IN THE MONEY HOLE!!””

    or

    “What’s with this Pro-Hole agenda?….”

    “”I resent that – I do not take money from special interests, and if I did I would throw it right in the hole because *I am a Patriot*.

    1. This is my favorite onion video.
      Another great part is how the woman who is against the current money hole policy isn’t for getting rid of the moronic money hole, but is for “privatizing” it.

  28. “Paul Krugman on Jobs: New Grads Will Bear Scars of Financial Crisis” (video): http://f4a.tv/fRQ0Yl (@nytimeskrugman via @92Y)

  29. Great post, and I also love this Onion Video.

    http://www.intellectualtakeout…..ral-theory

  30. How about we kill the federal government? That should do it.

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