” One thing, which I wish Taibbi had emphasized more is that it looks increasingly like credit would not have “seized up” across the board, for very long anyway had the big banks been allowed to fail. The mid-sized banks and the community banks, which lacked exposure to much in the way of toxic assets (because they sold them off to the big banks which then folded them into Mortgage Backed Securities) would have survived. It would have been bumpy but well run banks just outside of big bank status, BB&T for instance, would have filled in the space.
The bailout was, as David Stockman says, a Wall Street crisis. The bankers all freaked out when their bets turned terrible, and then played the information leverage game with Washington to get the tax payers to pay for their mistakes. They basically said that the entire economy was going down (it wasn’t) and therefore an unprecedented abandonment of what was left of our market based economy was justified. It was a giant con. “
Illustration By Mike Keefe
How About Czar’s Pay ? If we are talking bloat here , then let’s start with politicians , bureaucrats and administrators before we think of cutting the pay of the one branch of government that is truly justified .
And remind us again how many aides Michelle has .
” Panetta said there were four areas he looked at when trying to achieve savings: efficiencies; force structure reductions, or decreasing total troop strength; procurement reforms; and, perhaps most controversially, compensation.
Troop pay was not directly affected by the Budget Control Act reductions, but if Panetta was laying out a road map for future cuts, as he appeared to be doing, it may not be spared for long.
“Everything has to be looked at if you’re serious about achieving the kind of savings that we need to achieve to address the budget deficit,” Panetta said, adding that he faced a $50 million healthcare bill at the Defense Department and that pay rates had grown significantly in recent years.
Still, military pay seems a strange place to start cutting. While troops do have a robust benefits package during service, pay can be barebones, starting at roughly $1,500 per month for junior enlisted service members. Cuts or cost increases to veterans’ healthcare are also a sore spot, as fee increases in the current defense budget bill have left some retirees feeling let down by the military. “
Salary of retired US Presidents ………….$180,000 FOR LIFE
Salary of House/Senate …………………..$174,000 FOR LIFE
Salary of Speaker of the House …………$223,500 FOR LIFE
Salary of Majority/Minority Leaders …… $193,400 FOR LIFE
Average Salary of a teacher ……………. $40,065
Average Salary of Soldier DEPLOYED IN AFGHANISTAN $38,000
I think we found where the cuts should be made!
“The War on Children”
” If you think Barbara Boxer’s right about General Romney’s war on woman, feel free to waste
your vote. But what else is likely to happen between now and the next time you cast a presidential ballot? We’ve rehearsed the fiscal stuff in this space before: China becoming the world’s biggest economy, another American downgrade, total U.S. liabilities equivalent to about three times the entire planet’s GDP. A “non-partisan” Pew Research study says the American middle class faces its “worst decade in
modern history” — and the first bump down starts on January 1: The equally “non-partisan”
Congressional Budget Office now says that the tax and budget changes due to take effect at the
beginning of 2013 will put the country back in recession and increase unemployment. This is a
revision of their prediction earlier this year that in 2013 the economy would contract by 1.3 percent. Now they say 2.9 percent. These days, CBO revisions only go one way — down. They’re gonna need steeper graph paper. In a global
economy, atrophy goes around like syphilis in the Gay Nineties: A moribund U.S. economy further mires Europe, and both slow growth in China, which means fewer orders for resource-
rich nations. . . . Four wheels spinning in the mud, and none with a firm-enough grip to pull the vehicle back on to solid ground.”
A National Wall of Shame
“What we need is a National Wall of Shame. A distinguished group of citizens, led perhaps by General Stan McChrystal, would serve as the
“admissions committee.” $25 million would be allocated for the acquisition of the site and the
construction of the wall itself. And on that wall would go the names of those whose actions brought disgrace upon the United States of
“There’s a vicious cycle in America: politicians make up onerous laws and regulations, and lawyers get rich exploiting them. But the
situation is even worse when the politicians are the lawyers — or in other words, the Democratic Party.
New York Sun on the usual blame bandwagon that follows evilness in America and the average citizen’s higher sense of reason .
” Details of this crime were still coming over the wires when statements and editorials started calling for the weakening of the Bill of Rights. Some want to impose new ratings codes, or worse, to deal with Hollywood’s penchant for violence and gore. Others are blaming the violence on the separation of church and state that has permitted the rise of a strong streak of secularism in America. Still others are reacting to the killings at Aurora with calls to weaken the Second Amendment, which protects the right to keep and bear arms. Mayor Bloomberg and the Times jumped right in on this. The Daily News actually asserted that, because President Obama and Governor Romney have shown some deference to the Second Amendment, they were standing at the killer’s side “as he sprayed bullets and buckshot into a crowded movie theater”
Charles C W Cooke offers this must-read piece in NRO .
“What happened in Colorado in the early hours of this morning was not a “tragedy” but a willful act of mass murder. Beyond his age, name, and ethnicity, nobody yet knows who the shooter is, or why he chose to do what he did. In my view, this is a blessing, albeit a temporary one; for, as.has been the way in recent years, once his partyregistration, television-viewing habits, and random scribblings become known to the public,
all sorts of hysterical speculation and unlettered accusations will burst forth.
Whole groups will be vilified, blame will be apportioned to those many times removed, and the shooter will be partially absolved of blame by those who prefer to see fault in video games or talk radio or political rhetoric or anything else
that can be conscripted to explain why terrible things happen to good people. “