One reason (perhaps the main reason) I wroked so hard to help Obama get elected was because I thought he could be pull a Reagan and actually move public opinion. He has the rhetorical skills, and I still think he can lead instead of following Congress (the GOP and BLue dogs, actually).
Again, if there's EVER a time to pick a fight with the GOP it's on this issue. This is where you use the American people's outrage and the GOP's corrupt protection of Wall St. to break the GOP. If you don't do it now, you don't do it.
During the campaign, Obama praised Reagan for moving the public's views on issues (the wrong way, of course). Obama has the ability to do that. My greatest dissapointment is that instead of doing the same but to the left and for responsibility and for the little guy, Obama placates the GOP and even takes on many of their own talking points, legitimizing them.
You cannot say this bill will do nothing, even Feingold doesn't say that, but if you're holding out for perfection, you're never gonna get it.
Nice straw men there, but I never said those things, and that's not my stance.
What I want, and what the country needs, is to fix the damn problem. I don't think we are going to have a better time than now to do this, and is has to be done. Passing a half-measure that doesn't actualy fix the main problems is a bad idea, even if it makes smaller positive changes, because it kills the chance we have right now.
Further, there's probably no better issue than this to hold out on and put the pressure on the corrupt SOB's who just want to further line the pockets of the ultra-rich bankers at the expense of the rest of us. If there exists ANY issue where the preident could rally the American people to the cause, this is it. And the precedent it could set could be extremely valuable for the rest of president Obama's term(s) in office.
It completely saps the potential energy of getting done what is needed when you settle for partial measures (that don't do the job).
Something getting voted down is not the end of it; rather, it can be the beggining.
You take that vote and you hang it around the offending pols' necks and you keep pointing at it day after day after day. Every time somebody gets on tv, they mention that nelson voted in favor of the banks and against Americans. Every time you speak to a newspaper journalist you say the same thing. Every time the left writes a blog, it mentions the traitors to the American people.
It's the PERFECT time to campaign hard for it. The GOP and conservadems just gave the middle finger to mainstreet and licked the boots of Goldman Sachs. Now's the time to fight hard.
I'm pretty sure that Feingold believes that we get one bite at this apple and it better be a good enough bite - and this one isn't.
IMO, this is one of the lessons from the too-small stimulus. You don't get a second chance at everything, and if you settle for something that doesn't fix the core problems, thent he core problems don't get fixed.
Democrat loyalists can go on about "the perfect being the enemy of the good" and miss the point here. "They had a choice" and chose dealing with Senator Brown to make the bill weaker, and maintain his vote, rather than make the bill stronger and get Fie==eingold's vote-- he wasn't even consulted. They didn't even persue the progressive alternative.
Lets just take fighting inflation, for instance. You are giving credit to Reagan for that, but what are you suggesting he did?
It's pretty commonly accepted (or so I thought) that inflation came down because of the Volker Fed aggressively raising rates. Well, the majority of that happened before Reagan was even sworn into office. So I guess you are saying Reagan did something else.
Maybe you are talking about Reagan's tax cuts and free spending. But I know of no argument from any school of economics that claims that pumping more money into the economy lowers inflation (the opposite, if anything).
So what is it, BJJ? WHat did Reagan do to lower inflation?
however, the fact that the economy didn't recover after the tax cuts, but then later did in the middle of tax hikes before and after the recovery doesn't support the assertion that the tax cuts was what did the job.
The fact that you can track reduced inflation and reduced/increased growth extremely closely with the Fed's policies no matter what the tax or spending policies is a much, much stronger argumen for what was having the largest effect on the economy.
Further, the fact that most of the Fed's rate increases happened before Reagan even came into office demolishes the right-wing talking points giving credit for fighting inflation to Reagan.
1) You keep ignoring the fact that Reagan signed into law tax hikes, including some massive ones, year after year after year in his presidency, including the biggest one in US history years before the economy turned around.But of course, you are only too willing to credit the tax cut in 1981 for expansion years later (after many of the tax raises). Nice job picking and choosing evidence to fit your ideology.
2) Volker became head of the Fed in November 1979. By the end of 1979, the Fed started fighting inflation the only reliable way known - by tightening up monetary policy.The Federal funds rate went up by 9% between november 1979 and June 1981(a few months into the Reagan Admin.) It was important to get control of inflation, and I'm glad that Reagan didn't screw up Carter/Volker's policies on fighting inflation.
If the conservative critiques of Keynes had been right, it wouldn't have had to lead to a severe recession, but it did and the US fell into a deep recession in the summer of 1981.
By the summer of 1982, while inflation had fallen sharply, the economy seemed on the verge of a tailspin. So the Fed abruptly shifted policy and began aggressively trying to expand the economy. It worked and the economy roared back (helped by all the idle capacity that was sitting around due to the really bad recession.
By 1984, when the recovery was well established, the Fed began trying to reign in the economy, and it was successful. That helped a slower expansion to continue.
In 1987, the crash of the stock market threatened a new recession, but the Fed responded a quick expansion of the monetary base and managed to avoid a slump.
This all happened irrespective of whether the gov. passed tax cuts (like 1981) or tax hikes (like 1982-1988). Further, it happend despite large increases in government spending during the 1980's (which didn't seem to doom us all afterall).
Nonetheless, the 1980's had a slower growth rate overall than the 1970's as a whole, and the 1980's growth was well below the golden period of 25-30 years after WWII (which had much, much higher top marginal income tax rates, btw).
fighting inflation was one of the main causes of the recession. They depressed growth to wring inflation out of the economy. It resulted in a bad recession.
you say "Reagan grew the economy by a third". How, pray tell, did he do that? And don't say "tax cuts", as he actually signed tax increases into law every year from 1982-1988, with the 1982 tax hike being the largest in US history in peacetime (by %GDP).
He did spend like a drunken sailor on shore leave, which we keep being told by the guys on Fox News leads to depression, not growth (funny how it didn't doom us all back then).
If it happened this way, then there's no legal problem there.
Don't act like people were being completely loony for taking Setak's words about it as a possibility that something illegal went down, especially in light of the time it took for the white house, media, or other sources to get the above information out there. This is what happens when you let part of a story (the worst-sounding part) to sit out there for a while.
Rep. Joe Sestak (D-Penn.) was offered a prominent but uncompensated, advisory position -- in the national security/foreign policy area -- if he would drop out of the Pennsylvania Senate primary race, a source with knowledge of the exchange said during a briefing on Friday morning.
The offer was made by White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel through a prominent intermediary -- former President Bill Clinton -- during the months of June and July of 2009. The White House initiated the conversation, which occurred over phone. It would have allowed Sestak to remain in the House of Representatives while advising the president...
"By virtue of his career in public service, including distinguished military service, Congressman Sestak was viewed to be highly qualified to hold a range of advisory positions in which he could, while holding his House seat, have additional responsibilities of considerable potential interest to him and value to the Executive Branch," a memo detailing the administration's findings reads (READ THE FULL MEMO BELOW).