This took place sometime last week, and I'd thought ER and Sunnubian would find it interesting.


Dean Baker's perspective departs from my usual Marxian influenced perspective (i.e he doesn't advocate changing the economic system etc).  However, he does illustrate how economist (who celebrate this system) still understand that the issues (however phony)are largely a matter of successful framing and political will.


He notes this on the non Medicare/Medicare issue as well as the employment (lack of demand in the private sector he calls a collapse ).  I don't agree on his "nothing happens" statement he opens with (he supports deficit spending like Paul Krugman) which is a Keynesian perspective.  Its the ripple effect that isn't quite being discussed.







"Everything is legal if the government can see you"-  KRS-ONE

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He said exactly what I perceive all this to be, They are "not arguing over big government or small government", they are really arguing over "who gets the money".  


Politicians are really just fighting over exactly who is going to control which portion of billions/trillions in government revenue, and how they plan to divvy it up among themselves, their campaign donors and special interest groups.


She touched on what I mentioned in another thread about cutting waste from "Defense Spending", where the Pentagon owns 235 golf courses around the world and won't disclose the amount of money spent, and spend a half a billion dollars a year on marching bands, if that is not a WTF waste of money, I don't know what is, and imagine how many other billions are being wasted on unnecessary and frivolous crap under the guise of "Defense Spending".

Well ... that was interesting!!  Although, I probably only agree in-whole with only half of the things he said!!


I definitely agree with his remarks about the health care industry ... and about the fact that it's all about "who your friends are" .. politically speaking!!  That pretty much sums up politics as a whole!!  And without question ... there needs to be the understanding that the ONLY "friends" of Republicans are the rich.  


I don't agree with his "nothing happens" statement, either.  Something would definitely happen!!  But ... it seems he has a propensity towards "framing" the argument to fit his particular opinion, as well.    'Cause there's no guarantee that if we were to 'go over the cliff' (which isn't - and was never - going to happen!) ... that the issue would be resolved in a matter of days or weeks.


Maybe he forgets that Republicans took the debt-ceiling issue to the very brink ... due to being so sure they were right and that they would win the argument. But, they were wrong.  AND they lost.  So ... all that hardship (and the reduction in credit rating) was basically caused for nothing!


I also disagree that the reason for the size of our current deficient was due to the "collapse" of the economy.  Of course, that didn't help anything.  However ... the billions (or I suppose it's trillions now??) that were spent on two unpaid-for wars ... and letting the rich and corporations keep more of their money without offsetting that cost, as well ... is what left us without enough money to (at least help) cover us through "the crisis."


Then there was $800 billion of taxpayer money that was given to banks ... who kept it and refused to put it back into the economy.  After that .... the economy, being as broken and to the degree it was, was unable to generate enough revenue to cover costs of trying to get out of the mess we were in.


But ... the money paid to and spent in Iraq was very real money!!  Not IOUs. Cold hard cash was spent in and paid to Afghanistan, as well.  And the money put into the pockets of the (already) rich ... that they, too, are sitting on and refusing to spend .... is very real money, as well!!!


Most things political ... and almost anything/everything actually said by politicians is rarely what it seems .... or the "honest" or "whole" story ... (i.e., it is "framed" to suit specific opinion.)  While I've only heard one, maybe two, news anchors touch on this ... what is NOT said is that ... there was no way in hell Republicans would let the Defense budget get gutted!!   


Mr. Baker brushed by it himself above (alluding to the "friends" comment he made) .... but the fact is ... none of the entitlement programs were on the table for the deep cuts what would be taking place on Jan. 1st (although he is right that those cuts would not go into affect until the 2014 budget was implemented ... which I think is sometime in Sept. or Oct.).


But ... it would still mean that Republicans lost something much more important to them than the Democrats would have!!  Companies like Halliburton, Lockheed and Boeing would have been pissed .. and lost millions (if not billions) in contracts!!  And many Republicans, themselves, would lose millions of investment earnings through the decline of those companies.

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