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The devil’s in the details

April 1, 2013

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke issued a not-so-gentle reminder last week in explaining the Federal Open Market Committee’s decision to stand pat, again, on artificially very low interest rates....

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Apr-08-13 4:16 PM

Don't try to make a living at comedy, JR. Your family will starve. Then they'll all have to go on government assistance. And, out of deep gratitude, you'll become a fuzzy-headed liberal. Your friends at the New Ulm Country Club will disown you. Grocery clerks will spit on your food stamps. And, you'll be forced to drink rot-gut wine to alleviate to pain and grind of your empty, penurious life.

Later, with kidneys and liver failing, you'll wish you had been kinder and more thoughtful to Svensota, and not teased him about his pointy lefty head, or made fun of his deep belief that he was, indeed, George Clooney.

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Apr-07-13 7:29 PM

So Krugman was a spy. This from a guy who thinks he's George Clooney. And, you have no worries about the federal debt. That stands to reason it's always fun to spend other people's money. What makes it even more fun is when people like you think because the sky's the limit with debt there needn't be any accountability either.

You can put your hat back on now, we've all seen your point.

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Apr-07-13 4:24 PM

JR: It's not well known, but I have highly secret information that, in his youth, Paul Krugman was simply infiltrating the enemy. This first-hand information he gleaned from the ELR (Economic Luddites of the Right) has served him well as he continually forewarns us caring and forward-thinking Americans about of the dangers of Austrian economists.

As to Japan, they have always been timid semi-Keynesians (at best). Some twenty years later--last week-- they got up the courage to loosen their money supply (gasp!), and double the amount of money in circulation in an attempt to produce inflation of about 2% (double gasp!). They have long been lovers of tight money and deflation, not exactly what the good Dr. Maynard ordered. That's more like a trick out of your guys' bag.

How IS your phone company working out for you?

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Apr-07-13 1:12 PM

But Sven, your prophet Krugman worked for Reagan. How do you reconcile that one ?

It is no surprise that you would be a disciple of Keynesian dogma. The principles worked so well for the Japanese during the lost decade. It appears we are facing the same fate. Do you think we will be as lucky as the Japanese and have another technology boom to save the day ?

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Apr-06-13 11:17 PM

Ah, yes, Ronald Reagan, High Priest of the Far Right. Thanks for bringing him up, MCW.

Fellow citizens, how's your phone working these days? Enjoy flying on commercial airlines? Been making connections into smaller markets lately? Like the charges on your credit card? What mega-bank has been giving you wonderful service, or supporting your community? Ever wonder how the banking system imploded in 2008? Got any clues as to how Wall Street really works?

How about all those other wondrous joys of free market gonzo Capitalism gone wild, known as deregulation?

Let us all face southward toward Dixon, Illinois and thank The Gipper.

I know what part I'll be facing south.

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Apr-06-13 9:16 PM

Unemployment and interest rates were sky high under Reagan. Is that the "prosperity" that you speak of?

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Apr-06-13 12:53 PM

MIT: What you think we need and what has worked stunningly for 70+ years are polar opposites. Fortunately, troglodyte thinking by the far right will get them nowhere. So, keep it up, and keep on losing elections.

And...thanks for all the "wisdom", but we'll handle it from here on.

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Apr-06-13 9:38 AM

I give credit for Obama for helping get the economy going in the right direction (not by any means restored). The last couple years he's stayed out of the way and stopped throwing billions of dollars at everything. Let businesses grow without continual increased regulation, which leads to taxes/costs. Then again, maybe Mr. Obama wants to conduct another census so he can credit himself with growing jobs again....

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Apr-05-13 5:47 PM

Well, there I go again. MIT, JR, MIT, JR. Tough to know for sure.

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Apr-05-13 5:45 PM

JR: So, how have things been in THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA the past 70 years or so?

The answer: Consistently one of the highest standards of living in the world, and the highest sustained standard of living in the history of civilized mankind. (That goes back about 5,000 years.)

Not a bad record, huh?

Based on what? Well, predominately Democrat economic policy (read Keynes). Certainly not Republican policy. I give you Eisenhower, Nixon, Ford, Reagan and Bush 1 and 2--not exactly the economic whiz kids of yesteryear. Did someone say trickle down? Or, WIN-Whip Inflation Now? How about the joys of deregulation? And, of course, eight years of TBBF--The Bush Banking Fiasco.

Naivete. Yup. Whose?

Not mine, my friend.

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Apr-05-13 2:35 PM

JR: I'm not often confused with George Clooney.

I am George Clooney.

(And, of course, Concerned73, as well.)

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Apr-05-13 2:27 PM


Of course consumer confidence is all media based. I'm sure it's some left wing conspiracy. All the little people are liberal media dupes except for a few highly observant watchdogs, such as yourself.

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Apr-05-13 1:14 PM


Well now, let us all be peeved about the economy.

In my book, I see the Dow going from around 6,500 to 14,500 under the brilliant economic leadership of President Obama, from January 2008

That would be a 123% increase.

So, my glass is 84.3% full...or in the case of my IRA, fuller, since I haven't been shy about my belief or investment in the long term prospects of the good ol' US of A.

I also strongly believe in Keynesian economics. Unlike you, I don't worry about the Federal debt. To your point, I'd like to see a lot more emphasis on unemployment, too--and a lot more stimulus money spent. (Bugga, bugga! OOOoooooooooooo!)

All you nay-sayers and TPers and Obama-bashers are first rate Chicken Littles, and that's about all you're going to make in this economy...little.

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Apr-05-13 12:33 PM


The unemployment rate for March dropped by one tenth a percent to 7.6%. This was due to nearly 500,000 people dropping out of the labor market. I believe this was posted on CNN's web site today. Again, you can keep cheering all you wish but the reasons behind the numbers are telling a very different story about what is really going on.

And, you should apologize to Micheal. For you to get the two of us confused must be terribly insulting to Michael.

I am often confused with George Clooney, however. That is due to my striking good looks and not on my stand on same sex marriage debate.

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Apr-05-13 8:36 AM

Sven: another news flash (actually it was reported last night) - 3rd straight month with increased applications for unemployment benefits. "Soaring stock market?"-you could be a reporter for the Today show-it's slowly creeping up and recovering to levels that may actually make money in retirement accounts. I will agree and am very pleased that people started to have confidence, but that's media based. If things were sooo great you'd see the interest rates start to climb-that's really a thermometer for the economy. Wall Street and Federal Reserve are still very apprehensive - but what do they know.

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Apr-04-13 11:31 PM

Sorry, MIT. I thought you were JR. It's hard to tell you two apart. Kind of like Hippie and me.

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Apr-04-13 1:26 PM

I have just two words for you, JR: Paul Krugman.

Everything I would write in the next 138 posts to you (and have written the past multiple months) would just be some variation of this brilliant man's Keynesian riff.

So, just read his columns on your own time and let's worry about something important, like The Twins.

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Apr-03-13 5:18 PM

1. Your glass is 67.5% empty, JR. No doubt based on highly secret information only you have.

2. And, I'm pretty sure it's all President Obama's fault, whatever point it is you'd like to make.

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Apr-03-13 9:50 AM

The title says it all. If you want to base your assesment of our economy merely on sound bites then so be it. If you want to dig a little deeper then you might begin to grasp what is really going on.

For instance, the chief reason the unemployment rate has dropped is because people have simply stopped looking. You can consider that an achievement if you want but those people would have a different take on it.

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Apr-02-13 11:24 PM

Good heavens!

Things just aren't perfect. All those housing starts mean nothing. The soaring stock market means nothing. The decline in unemployment means nothing. The robust auto market means nothing. The increases in consumer spending means nothing. The jump in consumer confidence means nothing.

I miss the good old days of doom and gloom. I much prefer The Journal's view of the world: darkness, dread and bitterness.

If only The Maverick had won.

If only Mitt had won.

If only the GOP had any hope in any future decade.


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