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peace frog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-26-10 07:04 AM
Original message
Is the president panicking?
Is the president panicking?

His spending freeze invokes memories of Clinton's shift right in '94. It's worse because it could doom the recovery

By Robert Reich
Monday, Jan 25, 2010 20:26 EST

President Obama today offered a set of proposals for helping Americas troubled middle class. All are sensible and worthwhile. But none will bring jobs back. And Americans could be forgiven for wondering how the president plans to enact any of these ideas anyway, when he can no longer muster 60 votes in the Senate.

The bigger news is Obama is planning a three-year budget freeze on a big chunk of discretionary spending. Wall Street is delighted. But it means Main Street is in worse trouble than ever. A spending freeze will make it even harder to get jobs back because government is the last spender around. Consumers have pulled back, investors wont do much until they know consumers are out there, and exports are minuscule.

In December 1994, Bill Clinton proposed a so-called middle-class bill of rights including more tax credits for families with children, expanded retirement accounts, and tax-deductible college tuition. Clinton had lost his battle for healthcare reform. Even worse, by that time the Dems had lost the House and Senate. Washington was riding a huge anti-incumbent wave. Right-wing populists were the ascendancy, with Newt Gingrich and Fox News leading the charge. Bill Clinton thought it desperately important to assure Americans he was on their side.

Two months later, Clinton summoned Dick Morris to the White House to figure out how Clinton could move to the right and better position himself for reelection. The answer: Balance the budget.


http://www.salon.com/news/us_economy/index.html?story=/...

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elocs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-26-10 07:09 AM
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1. Shift right? I thought we were supposed to get a left turn?
Whatever happened to that?
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joecool65 Donating Member (262 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-26-10 07:10 AM
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2. Reich, CHECK YOUR FACTS
Fox debuted in 1996 and was not around in 1994.
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FBaggins Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-26-10 07:16 AM
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3. Worse.
He's panicking in areas that he should be confident... and confident in areas where he should be panicking.
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Kceres Donating Member (839 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-26-10 07:20 AM
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4. I don't think our president panics.
That's why I voted for him.
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dgibby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-26-10 07:57 AM
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5. If he's not, he should be. n/t
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Demeter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-26-10 08:13 AM
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6. Unfortunately, No. He's Not Panicking
You have to have some understanding of the crisis to realize fear.
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Overseas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-26-10 08:51 AM
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7. Spending freeze signals those of us curbing our own discretionary spending to hold back more.
We've already cut back and I can see that in my neighborhood. We're afraid to spend as much as we used to because we're afraid our jobs will be frozen next.

How does that help the economy?

Who did better? Spending Freeze Hoover? Or constructive massive government jobs programs FDR?

Why is our president so afraid to follow FDR whose policies have frightened the GOP for decades because they so clearly demonstrated the power of our government to do good?
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Igel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-26-10 09:12 AM
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8. I don't think so.
I think he's offended and angry.
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dkf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-26-10 09:47 AM
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9. It's funny he thinks he can make a dent in the deficit without reviving the economy
It's the jobs stupid!
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bertman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-26-10 09:57 AM
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10. Why is it that I feel like a lab rat in a gigantic economics experiment? nt
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