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Don't you just love it when a well thought out plan comes together?
That's how members of the Republican Party have been feeling lately. Good about themselves. It's the way Tony Soprano and his cohorts felt after killing an enemy or hijacking a tractor-trailer full of plasma teevees. Satisfied with their performances.
Take House Speaker Boehner for example. He was so satisfied with his party's hostage taking skills and the ransom that Democrats and Americans had to pay in the debt ceiling standoff that he told reporters he was "pretty happy" that he had gotten 98% of what he wanted.
That Boehner "98%".....the hard fought win against Democrats, Obama and America....is already paying dividends. 2000 points. 2000 points in the last 2 weeks. 2000 points is how much the DOW 30 has lost in just the last two weeks. The market, apparently, looked at the 98% win that Boehner boasted about, didn't like what it saw....and rushed for the "sold" exits. Conventional wisdom is that the stock market predicts 6 months ahead. That being the case, the start of the presidential primary season will be accompanied by the American economy falling back into recession. GDP will turn negative, and our economy will continue to retract....costing more Americans their jobs, their homes and their futures.
To the hostage takers from the patriotic GOP, this is a feature, not a bug. Republicans WANT the U.S. economy to slip back into recession. They're patriotic that way. Especially during a presidential election year. The most powerful Republican today, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, has not been shy about the top priority of his fellow Republicans. To limit Barack Obama to one term as president. Nothing...and especially not a depressed economy when millions of Americans are hurting....is more important than removing a Democratic president.
So, far...McConnell's plan is working out just fine. The economy, if the market is to be believed, will double dip...reminiscent of 1937 when Republicans compelled FDR to start cutting government spending and the economy then double dipped. McConnell's obstructionists and hostage takers have assured the country that there will be no new government spending to create jobs or hold the safety net together from further fraying. All part of the GOP's patriotic plan to take their country back.
America's rich, still enjoying those historically low federal tax rates, and getting wealthier than ever.....see no need to hire more people or produce more goods because Americans don't have enough money to buy more new products and services. Americans don't have any money because they don't have jobs and so...cannot stimulate the economy through consumption.
The government could directly create jobs as FDR did in the 30's but patriotic Republicans will not permit the government to spend any more money....and they have the ransom notes to prove it. Instead, the government has to cut spending....which is, naturally, the absolute opposite of what the government should be doing right now. And THAT'S all part of the overall GOP plan to accomplish their number one priority.
Hurt the economy....deteriorate a tepid recovery....send the economy back into recession....and even a theocon, sh*tkicking, poser like Texas Governor Rick Perry or a plasticized windup Ken doll, like Mormon Mitt Romney......just might knock the Kenyan socialist out of the White House next November. That's the plan. And the plan is right on schedule.
Now allow me to get back to the falling stock market. The stock market is falling because investors looked at the austerity plan pushed through by the hostage takers and decided that spending cuts by the government will result in less economic activity in the near term, not more. And then they sold stocks accordingly.
What about the debt market? What about confidence in Treasury bonds? The 10 year T-bill was in such demand yesterday that the percentage yield fell to a 52 week low at 2.33%.....which means just the opposite of what the patriotic GOP hostage takers kept yammering about during the debt ceiling argument. Allegedly smart conservative economists have been telling Americans that our debt is soo..oo..oo effing bad that investors would soon lose their appetite for our debt vehicles....Treasury bonds....that interest rates would skyrocket and inflation would suffocate all of us.
Yet none of that was true.
We do not have a debt problem. If we did, yesterday, investors would have fled Treasuries. They did just the reverse. The debt and deficit kabuki over the last number of months has been nothing but a diversion, a distraction. As Republicans meant it to be. But it stopped the government from looking to spend any more money through an agreement at gunpoint that reduces government spending.
We do not have a debt problem....we have a liquidity and jobs problem. The stock market fell yesterday after investors calculated that no new government stimulus was possible and that a market deteriorization was now inevitable. On the other hand, bond market investors rallied to Treasuries....proving yet again, that our nation's debt problem, no matter what the hostage taking Republicans still blubber on about...is not really a problem at all.