The Obama File

Discussion in 'Politics' started by eyeswideshut, Oct 5, 2011.

  1. spidergoat Liddle' Dick Tater Valued Senior Member

    Doesn't that chart graph the purchasing power of gold? How is that relevant?
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  3. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

    The chart is indexed to a USD of the late 18th century. The dotted lines are there to illustrate when the dollar was no longer pegged to gold, but that's besides the point. The US dollar, relative to itself, has decreased in value. Which has really nothing to do with the stability of the Federal Government, the intrusiveness, size, scope and morality, well maybe, but certainly not stability. It's probably never enjoyed more popular support in our history. I mean, there's no way the US government could have levied all the regulations and taxes 200 years ago as it does now. They'd of been tarred and feathered quicker then split. Not now.

    Not now.

    By the way, did you make your own icon? Which program do you use? It's pretty cool looking (smoking pipe).
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  5. spidergoat Liddle' Dick Tater Valued Senior Member

    It's not the same society as 200 years ago, it's much more complex and diverse.

    I got the gif here:
    And cropped it and made it small with photoshop at work. I do like the smoke effect while the man appears still. Loving the new 100x100 pixel limit!
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  7. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

    I don't see the correlation, there one time when the dollar recovered despite a lack of gold standard, between 1850 and 1875, Can't really say it was the lack of gold standard the cause inflation, unless you can suggest a mechanism that we can test with more data.

    Also taxation was much higher in the 1950-60's (when america was experiences is greatest economic growth ever to boot) for example compared to today:

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    I think one could argue that the tax code has never been as complex as it is today, and that complete tax reform is needed, throwing out present tax laws and installing new fresh ones that lack decades of exceptions and loopholes. I personally would like to see federal taxes abolished and just have the federal government bill the states, leave it to the states to figure out how the generate the money, thus each state has its own tax code for which it generates revenue for state functions and for paying off the annual federal government bill. The people pay state taxes only instead of state and federal taxes.
  8. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member


    On drugs?

    And people are earning many more dollars than they did in years gone by. As the value of the dollar has fallen consumer purchasing power has increased because consumers have more dollars in their pockets, this too has been pointed out to ad nauseum. But it doesn't stop you from repeatedly posting this nonsense.

    This too has already been debunked repeatedly. We are using competing currencies today and have been. China only owns about 6% of outstanding US debt - about the same as Japan. As long as China is running a trade surplus with the US they have no choice but to reinvest those dollars in US denominated assets, stocks, debt, etc. It has nothing to do with "competing currencies. And China cannot stop trading with the US without destroying it's own export based economy.

    And this should not be in the Obama thread. It should be in the Business subforum.
  9. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

    You need to give some basis for this statement - most sources show Michael is correct on this purchasing power of incomes point:
    I´m only assuming that they speak of the purchasing power - what they say is the actual incomes. I have seen basically this same data at several different sources, including Bloomberg as I recall. I posted this data many months ago.

    With "middle class" defined in terms of a purchasing power window, it is why the middle class is shrinking. (More are falling out the bottom of the middle class than are entering from the "upper class" above it as there are many more in the middle class than in the upper class, but it is downward flow for all but the super rich now.) US´s Gini index is rapidly growing worse. Not to the levels of the French Revolution, yet, however.
  10. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    It would appear that Michael has successfully hijacked yet another thread to spread his Libertarian nonsense. This discussion really should be in in the Business subforum with the rest of Michael's posts. That said, Michael likes to repeat ad nauseum that the purchasing power of the dollar has fallen over the course of the last century. What Michael likes to ignore is that people have more dollars. So they can buy more.

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  11. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

    To JoepistoleYour graph in post 627 just confirms the down turn in incomes started in 2007, perhaps at end of 2006, but that graph ends in 2009. If it went to 2012, it would show that down turn is continuing as my post 626 said to 7.8% total drop.
  12. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

    Wait lets see, according to that graph average income peaked at ~44,000 in 2007, 7.8% drop would be ~40,500 that would mean that it has continued to go down since 2007. I guess this is somehow Obama fault that he could not twinkle his nose and fix this mess that was decades in the making? How about the other claim that it has dropped 8.7% since 2000, well that does not match up with the graph at all since according to the graph income was slightly less then 40,000 in 2000, thus it still has gone up if only by a few hundred dollars since then. This means your numbers and his numbers do not correlate! I suspect the problem maybe the ever growing difference between "average" income and "median" income, as the rich have been getting richer and the poor poorer and the middle class shrinking the average income can go up but the median can go down at the same time. Decades now of cutting taxes on the rich has not improved income for the poor and middle class, although we can't prove that its the cause of poor and middle class depression at the very least as the rich represent ever larger sections of Americas total income it makes since to start taxing them more.
  13. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    It was to be expected. The Great Recession occurred during the timeframe you referenced. By definition, income shrinks during a recession – especially one with the size and magnitude of The Great Recession. Your assertion that per capita income is currently shrinking is just wrong (per attached link).

    Michael likes to harp on the fact that a dollar today buys less goods and services than it did decades ago. And he likes to ignore that people have more dollars, so they can purchase more.

    What has not been discussed is income distribution. Over the course of the last 20 or so years there has been a massive wealth transfer from the middle class to the uber rich. But nothing in Michael’s rhetoric will change that trend. Less government, less regulation, doing away with the Federal Reserve, etc.; is not going to somehow magically reverse the wealth transfers from the middle classes to the uber wealthy. Only a more balanced fiscal policy, appropriate regulation, changing the way we elect our officials (i.e. removing the influence of special interest money) and meaningful ethics reform in congress will do that.
  14. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

    If I said that then it was an accident. I know I have many times posted that the MIDDLE CLASS, is shrinking and its income in purchasing power is going down at least by 1% per year. Your graph in link and statements are about GDP per capital - I.e. include the rapidly increasing wealth of the upper classes and the very rich. I can accept their share of the pie is growing so rapidly that the total income per person may be slowly increasing. What has been the focus of my concern, is the rapidly growing rich/poor gap as measured by the Gini index.

    Wealth is a relative concept and even if it were increasing for the middle class on some absolute scale, there is still the potential for social instability if the bulk of the population feels they are being exploited to increase the wealth of the few much more than their wealth is. A recent Pew study found, if memory serves me correctly, that 85% of the US population is finding it harder now to maintain their living standards. You seem to agree here:
    SUMMARY: Nothing you have given references for (yet) refutes the either that the middle class is shrinking or that their real purchasing power is declining by at least 1% per year as many sourced have asserted.
  15. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

    It can seem complex, but really it's not that complex. It's just we're not taught how it functions and so it does appear to be complex. But it might not be all that complex once you stop and learn how it functions. IMO phrases like 'Synthetic Collateralized Debt Obligation' are purposefully made to sound complex. It's no different than a physician using idiopathic as in idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, which sound complex but pretty much could be summed up as your blood doesn't clot properly and we're not exactly sure as to the cause.

    In medicine there's been a recent push to get rid of the Latin roots and just teach the common English vernacular. I'm not sure if I'd ever get used to using the common vernacular, but I sure as hell wouldn't favor making up new complex-sounding names NOW. Oedema will always be Oedema as far as I'm concerned, but there's nothing wrong with just saying Swelling.

    Society is different and IMO we need a currency that reflects that change. We're living in the age of communication. We need a new way to govern ourselves. Why are we still using Bronze Age government? Why are we using a monetary system that's centuries old? Worse than that, many things are less efficient and worse now than they were 200 years ago.

    Obamney isn't going to bring 'change'. That's the last thing these people want - change. The only person who was talking about real change was Ron Paul. He was labeled a crazy ole' racist kook. Which is strong evidence the media (owned by the major Corporations like GE) will not allow a voice of reason and for real change to occur.

    As for currency, why not eliminate Income Tax and bring in competing currencies? That's much more modern. We could use everything from electronic currencies whose value is directly proportional to the degree of encryption all they way over to your standard gold and silver.

    Now, that's real Change We Can Believe In.... and it's the furthermost thing you'll ever hear from Obama or Mittens.

    Real Democracy comes from voluntary non coerced free-market exchange between free people.

    That's a pretty cool site. I sort of got mesmerized by the gifs.

    Think about this question: In a normal free-market, why do interest rates at the bank go up and go down?
    Maybe it seems like it's complex?
    Not really. Just like blueberries. When they are in season, their price goes down. When they are not in season, their price goes up. This is the supply and demand equation. Likewise, when money is in demand, the bank would naturally raise interest rates to bring in more money as their supply is low. When they have more than enough money, they simply lower interest rates.

    See? Not really that complex afterall

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  16. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

    Going back to Obamney.

    A few good reasons to vote for Obama:
    1. If you are rich, you're likely to get richer (-->CLICK<--)
    2. If you're an American Citizen and you don't mind your Civil "SERVANT" putting your name on a kill-list and discussing your murder with his campaign manager, and then killing you. Sure Obama's your man (--> You're Kidding me? HIS MANAGER?!?! <--)
    3. If you own stock in Halliburton. (-->We Love's gittin us sum dat God Damn Fracking 'Natural' gas too<--)
    4. If you think killing even more women and children is good (--> Yes We Can! <--)
    5. If you're a black American and think Obama's looking out for you (--> Sucks to be You <---)

    Yes, there's many a good reason to vote Obama - as long as you like the ways things are and are happy to get a whole lot more of the same ole thing.
    Likewise, Mittens is there to give you the illusion of choice. He's more of the same and he's happy to give it to you. The very very very last things these guys want (and more importantly - what their sponsor's want) is for things to change. They want stability. They LOVE reducing variables. And the biggest variable is you - and your actions. The easiest way to limit that variable is to keep you in a stall. To reduce your civil liberties.

    How many 'Citizens' today would feel comfortable making a 'Citizens Arrest'? I think most Citizens would rather let a crime take place rather than 'worry' the State might turn on them!
    How many 'Citizens' today would feel comfortable telling the police to get off their property? Or to go F themselves? Oh, we wouldn't want to do that.... might find WE are the ones going to jail.
    How many would dare challenge the IRS? Or the millions and trillions of other regulatory 'agencies'? Not many.

    People are afraid of their 'servants' - and that's a fact.

    Lastly, sort of off topic but on thread, I actually got to wondering if Obama didn't flub his first POTUS debate on purpose. Maybe he's worried his Cattle will be complacent - thinking he's a shoe-in. Particularly if there's bad weather. See, the easiest way to lose an election, is looking like you're going to win it. You have to appear as if you are losing (a little). That the race is 'tight'. That gets people out and in the box pulling the lever/pushing the button.
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2012
  17. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    They don't, and they haven't since the early '80s. GDP per capita is not the number you want - you want median hourly wages.

    What people were buying stuff with in the wake of Reaganomics was borrowed money - credit card debt, house equity debt. The purchasing power of their hourly compensation has been dropping since Reagan.

    And the consequences of the elections of Reagan, then Bush, then Clinton, then W, then Obama, demonstrate very clearly that elections have consequences - it has made quite a difference, having administrations like Reagan's and W's in control of Federal institutions.
  18. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

    Such as when Clinton, in between jamming his cigars in his interns vagina's, de-regulated the banks leading to the current Depression we're living through? Or like when Junior lied us into a Trillion Dollar War?
  19. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    Bloomberg Backs Barack

    Bloomberg Backs Barack

    Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg announced his endorsement of President Barack Obama. It is a lengthy endorsement that is not without harsh criticism of the president. Many in the mainstream press are focusing on the influence Hurricane Sandy has shown in the election. Below, provided in full, is Mayor Bloomberg's endorsement:

    The devastation that Hurricane Sandy brought to New York City and much of the Northeast—in lost lives, lost homes and lost business—brought the stakes of Tuesday's presidential election into sharp relief.

    The floods and fires that swept through our city left a path of destruction that will require years of recovery and rebuilding work. And in the short term, our subway system remains partially shut down, and many city residents and businesses still have no power. In just 14 months, two hurricanes have forced us to evacuate neighborhoods—something our city government had never done before. If this is a trend, it is simply not sustainable.

    Our climate is changing. And while the increase in extreme weather we have experienced in New York City and around the world may or may not be the result of it, the risk that it might be—given this week's devastation—should compel all elected leaders to take immediate action.

    Here in New York, our comprehensive sustainability plan—PlaNYC—has helped allow us to cut our carbon footprint by 16 percent in just five years, which is the equivalent of eliminating the carbon footprint of a city twice the size of Seattle. Through the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group—a partnership among many of the world's largest cities—local governments are taking action where national governments are not.

    Leadership Needed

    But we can't do it alone. We need leadership from the White House—and over the past four years, President Barack Obama has taken major steps to reduce our carbon consumption, including setting higher fuel-efficiency standards for cars and trucks. His administration also has adopted tighter controls on mercury emissions, which will help to close the dirtiest coal power plants (an effort I have supported through my philanthropy), which are estimated to kill 13,000 Americans a year.

    Mitt Romney, too, has a history of tackling climate change. As governor of Massachusetts, he signed on to a regional cap- and-trade plan designed to reduce carbon emissions 10 percent below 1990 levels. “The benefits (of that plan) will be long- lasting and enormous—benefits to our health, our economy, our quality of life, our very landscape. These are actions we can and must take now, if we are to have ‘no regrets' when we transfer our temporary stewardship of this Earth to the next generation,” he wrote at the time.

    He couldn't have been more right. But since then, he has reversed course, abandoning the very cap-and-trade program he once supported. This issue is too important. We need determined leadership at the national level to move the nation and the world forward.

    I believe Mitt Romney is a good and decent man, and he would bring valuable business experience to the Oval Office. He understands that America was built on the promise of equal opportunity, not equal results. In the past he has also taken sensible positions on immigration, illegal guns, abortion rights and health care. But he has reversed course on all of them, and is even running against the health-care model he signed into law in Massachusetts.

    If the 1994 or 2003 version of Mitt Romney were running for president, I may well have voted for him because, like so many other independents, I have found the past four years to be, in a word, disappointing.

    In 2008, Obama ran as a pragmatic problem-solver and consensus-builder. But as president, he devoted little time and effort to developing and sustaining a coalition of centrists, which doomed hope for any real progress on illegal guns, immigration, tax reform, job creation and deficit reduction. And rather than uniting the country around a message of shared sacrifice, he engaged in partisan attacks and has embraced a divisive populist agenda focused more on redistributing income than creating it.

    Important Victories

    Nevertheless, the president has achieved some important victories on issues that will help define our future. His Race to the Top education program—much of which was opposed by the teachers' unions, a traditional Democratic Party constituency—has helped drive badly needed reform across the country, giving local districts leverage to strengthen accountability in the classroom and expand charter schools. His health-care law—for all its flaws—will provide insurance coverage to people who need it most and save lives.

    When I step into the voting booth, I think about the world I want to leave my two daughters, and the values that are required to guide us there. The two parties' nominees for president offer different visions of where they want to lead America.

    One believes a woman's right to choose should be protected for future generations; one does not. That difference, given the likelihood of Supreme Court vacancies, weighs heavily on my decision.

    One recognizes marriage equality as consistent with America's march of freedom; one does not. I want our president to be on the right side of history.

    One sees climate change as an urgent problem that threatens our planet; one does not. I want our president to place scientific evidence and risk management above electoral politics.

    Of course, neither candidate has specified what hard decisions he will make to get our economy back on track while also balancing the budget. But in the end, what matters most isn't the shape of any particular proposal; it's the work that must be done to bring members of Congress together to achieve bipartisan solutions.

    Presidents Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan both found success while their parties were out of power in Congress—and President Obama can, too. If he listens to people on both sides of the aisle, and builds the trust of moderates, he can fulfill the hope he inspired four years ago and lead our country toward a better future for my children and yours. And that's why I will be voting for him.


    Bloomberg, Michael R. "A Vote for a President to Lead on Climate Change". Bloomberg View. November 1, 2012. November 1, 2012.
  20. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

  21. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Clinton didn't do that, Phil Gramm and the Republican Congress did. They had to impeach Clinton, first.

    But your point is good: elections have consequences. No way Vietnam veteran Gore launches two land wars in Asia on the credit card, or appoints minor campaign flunkies with no experience to head major disaster relief or other government agencies, or guts the enforcement of mortgage and banking regulations that do remain, or backs such huge tax breaks for US based multinational corporations, or privatizes military logistics and hires mercenaries in that number, or probably even sets up an international gulag of secret torture prisons under the American flag.

    It makes a difference - in this case 13 to 15 trillion in debt - who you elect to the Presidency.

    He will achieve nothing if he fails to recognize that all the moderates, and with them everyone worth listening to, is on one side of the aisle.

    Listening to "people on both sides of the aisle" is what dragged us to where we are, advancing a corporate giveaway like Romneycare as the only serious policy response to any of our major disasters. It's a problem, for a natural community organizer and cooperator like Obama, to deal in power politics - but he's up against the Koch brothers and Exxon and WalMart, Monsanto and Wall Street and United Health.
  22. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    No, per capital GDP number is the correct number. Wages are not the only form of income. While you may get 100% of your income from your wages; wages are only a portion of the total income. Individuals receive income from numerous sources, pensions, Social Security, Medicare, unemployment, and investments (e.g. small business people, stocks, annuities, life insurance, interest, etc.). So if you do as you propose, it would significantly understate income.

    What you are trying to get at is income distribution, and I mentioned that in my previous post.
  23. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    None of he income sources you proceed to list add anything to the point (SS is paid mostly to retired or disabled people, investment income goes mostly to the very wealthy, etc).

    Below the very upper classes, US people don't have more purchasing power - actual dollars - than they used to have, and they haven't seen an increase since the late 1970s. What financed the recent consumption booms was debt and milked housing equity, not dollars coming to hand. By themselves, changes in GDP per capita say little or nothing about general prosperity. Median wage per hour, corrected for inflation and taxation and including the unemployed, is a more useful number for considering your point.

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