Posts Tagged ‘stimulus’

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Corruption: Billions To Timulate Criminality

July 28, 2009

Billions To Stimulate Criminality

IBD: 24 July 2009

Corruption: A nonprofit group committing a crime conjures up images of terrorist fundraising. But $8.5 billion in taxpayer money may go to specialists in political terror: the tax-exempt scam artists of Acorn.

Did Democrats come to their present dominance of both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington thanks in large part to a “syndicate of tax-exempt organizations” that “has coordinated and implemented a nationwide strategy of tax fraud, racketeering, money-laundering and manipulating the American electorate”?

The reams of evidence provided by House Oversight and Government Reform Committee ranking Republican Darrell Issa of California and his GOP colleagues on the panel strongly suggest so.

… (Acorn) uses “a complex structure designed to conceal illegal activities” — 361 different entities in 120 cities, 43 states and the District of Columbia, amounting to a “shell game” that “diverts taxpayer and tax-exempt monies into partisan political activities.”

The group has over the last 15 years received in excess of $53 million in federal funds. Moreover, as the report warns, “under the Obama administration, Acorn stands to receive a whopping $8.5 billion in available stimulus funds.”

Acorn’s improprieties, of course, are not news. As Issa’s report notes, a third of the 1.3 million voter registration cards the organization solicited and presented in 2008 ended up being null and void; the group has been investigated for voter registration fraud in places such as Connecticut, Missouri, Nevada, North Carolina and Ohio.

A decade ago, an Acorn operative in Arkansas was arrested for falsification of voter registration forms. Soon after that, Philadelphia officials discovered hundreds of Acorn’s falsified registration forms. In 2007, the state of Washington filed felony charges against several Acorn employees and supervisors for submitting more than 1,700 fraudulent voter cards.

Just last fall, federal agents raided Acorn’s Nevada offices and in May of this year Nevada officials charged the organization and its state personnel with voter fraud. That was soon followed by seven Acorn officials in Pittsburgh being charged with voter fraud. Acorn has been accused of presenting at least 2,100 fraudulent registration forms in Lake County, Ind.

Superimposed upon these offenses are the alleged embezzlement practices of Dale Rathke, brother of the organization’s founder, Wade Rathke, who apparently used a financial management company to “loan” himself over $948,600 in Acorn funds.

For eight years after the incident, Acorn kept him in its employ and failed to notify its board of the money grab. Acorn board members Marcel Reid and Karen Inman were actually kicked off for trying to investigate the Dale Rathke cover-up, and for seeking financial transparency within Acorn.

Inman’s response to her removal last fall was to ask: “Why would you want us not to clean up things? Why would you not want to do your own investigation instead of bringing in the sheriff?”

Perhaps because a cleaned-up Acorn would not be able to operate effectively. Even the left-friendly National Public Radio has reported that the organization’s financial sleight of hand “essentially gives them a cloak that prevents people from seeing really how they’re spending money that comes, in some cases, from the taxpayers, in other cases, comes from members of their organization who pay dues.”

Yet this corrupt outfit has actually been signed up as a national partner with the U.S. Census Bureau to help recruit the nearly 1.5 million workers who will count and classify our 306 million population for 2010. It’s like getting a car thief to manage a parking garage.

As the Capital Research Center’s Matthew Vadum has documented, $3 billion from the stimulus package, another billion dollars from HUD, and $4.5 billion in Community Development Block Grants look set to come Acorn’s way for a total of $8.5 billion.

The Issa report further charges Acorn with submitting false filings to the IRS and the Labor Department, and violating the Fair Labor Standards Act and the ERISA law.

Amidst all this apparent illegality, the campaigns of President Obama, disgraced ex-Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, and Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, are among the beneficiaries of financial contributions from Acorn and its affiliates.

“These actions are a clear violation of numerous tax and election laws,” the Issa report charges.

Issa called it “outrageous that Acorn will be rewarded for its criminal acts by taxpayer money in the stimulus and is being asked to help with the U.S. census.” He says the organization “cannot and should not be trusted with taxpayer dollars.”

Don’t hold your breath for justice. No doubt Attorney General Eric Holder will soon be too busy hounding former Vice President Dick Cheney — for his forceful effort in waging the global war on terror — to probe the shady outfit that helped elect his boss president.


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Cartoon: Unemployment Office

July 16, 2009

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Unloved Stimulus

July 16, 2009

IBD: 15 July 2009

Spending: The stimulus isn’t working, and Americans don’t want another. At least, that’s what our latest IBD/TIPP Poll shows. So why is Congress mulling a second stimulus when the first has so obviously failed?

In our national poll taken last week, 53% said the $787 billion stimulus plan passed in February was “not effective” in “getting the economy going in the right direction.”

……

So while we have very little economic activity to show for all the stimulus and bailout money spent, we’ll have a massive debt hanging over our collective heads for decades to come.

……

With joblessness now at 9.5%, White House economic adviser Christina Romer on Tuesday admitted there was no way to tell how many jobs were created or saved. Stimulus, it seems, is faith-based economics.

……

Hasn’t anyone noticed that despite a 20% jump in spending over the last year, tax revenues have plunged 18% — largely because many of the “millionaires” Congress is going after are going broke?

So are the rest of us. Web site E-forecasting.com estimates the U.S. has lost over $108 billion in real GDP since the stimulus began.

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Cartoon: SLOW stimulus road work

June 23, 2009

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Obamanation!

June 9, 2009

Europe’s Lesson

IBD 9 June 09

Stimulus: With the votes tallied from a weekend election, it’s now apparent that the European Union has taken another step to the right. There’s a message in this for both the White House and the U.S. Congress.

Results from the vote for the EU Parliament showed huge disaffection among Europeans for state-directed answers to the economic crisis — specifically, for the kinds of massive stimulus programs pushed by the U.S.

Parties allied with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy — who have both made a point of opposing any kind of U.S.-style stimulus — made big gains. Even Italy’s Silvio Berlusconi, embroiled in a scandal in his home country, saw his party increase its strength in the Euro Parliament.

We mention this because, just one day after this sweeping repudiation of statism in Europe, the White House is doubling down on a losing bet, moving to “accelerate” stimulus spending and claiming it’ll “save or create” up to 600,000 jobs.

Pardon us if we’re skeptical. Earlier this year, the White House predicted the jobless rate would top out at 8% if Congress passed the $787 billion stimulus package. Well, since then, 1.5 million jobs have been lost, and unemployment just hit a 26-year high of 9.4%. So, by the administration’s own yardstick, it hasn’t worked at all.

Ignoring this reality, the new “Roadmap to Recovery” unveiled Monday seeks to accelerate stimulus spending on 10 major projects, ranging from road and airport repairs to hiring 135,000 teachers to finding 125,000 summer jobs for youth.

It sounds noble, but it’s just plain foolish.            (STUPID!)

As we’ve written before, the economy’s already on the mend and likely to show positive GDP growth before the end of the year — and perhaps as early as the third quarter. The $787 billion stimulus, which is only 6% spent, has nothing to do with this. It won’t even start being spent in significant amounts until early next year.

Virtually all of the jobs in Monday’s stimulus do-over are nonproductive government jobs — not productive private sector ones. Virtually all economists agree: Real job creation means permanent jobs in the private sector, not make-work jobs for government.

The short-term recovery that looks under way was baked in the cake when the Fed cut interest rates to a record low 0% last December. Still, with economic policy favoring high taxes and government over the private sector, the rebound’s not likely to be a strong one. And looking long term, the outlook is troubling. With an estimated $13 trillion in new spending planned by 2019, the U.S. government is fast becoming a bloated leviathan.

Americans will pay for this through higher taxes, more regulation, fewer jobs, lower incomes and less freedom. The surge in government spending and taxes will significantly hurt our productivity, damaging our economy’s long-term growth.

Just half a decade ago, it was commonly assumed that U.S. GDP could grow indefinitely by 3.5% or more, thanks to surging productivity. Now economists think we’ll be lucky to get 2% growth.

When Europeans trooped to the polls, they gave a definitive “no” to more and bigger government. Maybe Americans are ready to do the same; last weekend, a Gallup Poll showed most Americans for the first time view President Obama unfavorably when it comes to “controlling federal spending.”

There’s a lesson in this for the White House, if it’s willing to listen.

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Wealth Connection

March 16, 2009

Wealth Connection

By INVESTOR’S BUSINESS DAILY | 16 March 2009

Economy: The Federal Reserve last week announced that Americans’ net worth took an $11.2 trillion hit in 2008 — the biggest on record. Some might say, “Why care? It’s ancient history.” But we should care. A lot.


Read More: Economy


The recent economic and budget news has included so many gargantuan numbers — many in the trillions — that we’re in danger of becoming a bit jaded by them. In such company, the wealth shrinkage might seem benign by comparison. It isn’t.

Net worth — basically, the value of everything you own minus the debt you took on to buy it — plunged 9% from 2007’s $64.4 trillion to $51.5 trillion last year. In the fourth quarter alone, Americans lost $5.1 trillion in wealth. Both are records.

This is more than just a paper reduction in wealth. Such a big shift affects our behavior, making us less prone to take risks, less able to borrow, less able to spend and more anxious about the economy.

This is known as the “wealth effect.” When wealth rises, we spend more; when it falls, we spend less. For each $1 change in wealth, spending changes by 5 cents or so, economists say.

Across the economy, such impacts can be enormous. An $11.2 trillion drop in national wealth, for instance, translates into a $560 billion drop in spending — about $1,963 for every American.

This is why economists worry about net worth. If we don’t do something about stemming the decline in wealth and encouraging wealth accumulation, our economy will continue to struggle.

They may be on to this at the White House, where there’s been a decided shift in tone away from the expressions of doom and gloom common in the initial weeks of Barack Obama’s presidency.

On Friday, for instance, President Obama told Americans the economy is “not as bad as we think,” and that he was “highly optimistic” about things in the long run. Compare that with his statement of early February, when he called the economic crisis “as deep and dire as any since the days of the Great Depression.”

His Treasury secretary, Lawrence Summers, who isn’t exactly known as Mr. Sunshine, had this to say last week: “Before, we had too much greed and too little fear. Now, we have too much fear and too little greed.” And, for the record, he said he already sees “modestly encouraging” signs of success.

Maybe it’s dawned on them that fear and worry are two of the biggest enemies of wealth. People will only invest, and push up prices of assets such as stocks, bonds and real estate, when they feel comfortable about the future and its prospects. It’s called optimism.

We’ve heard this before, of course. FDR said, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” The problem is, people do have many things to fear — especially bad policies that will drag stock and home prices down even more, further eroding wealth.

We’re glad to see a change in the administration’s tone. But wealth will start to grow again only when policies change to include lower taxes on income and capital, much less government spending and far fewer regulations.

This would make all assets in America more profitable and therefore more valuable — the essence of wealth.

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Ray & Bubba

March 11, 2009

Ray & Bubba


( Arkansas mechanical engineers) were standing at the base of a flagpole, looking up.. A woman walked by and asked what they were doing.


ʽWe’re supposed to find the height of the flagpole, ‘said Bubba, ‘but we don’t have a ladder.’


The woman took a wrench from her purse, loosened a few bolts, and laid the pole down.  Then she took a tape measure from her pocket, took a measurement, announced, ‘Eighteen feet, six inches,’ and walked away.  Ray shook his head and laughed. ‘Ain’t that just like woman!
We ask for the height and she gives us the length!’


Bubba and Ray are currently working for President   Obama….

…  and helping to design and distribute the “stimulus package.”

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Bought & Paid For

February 27, 2009

Bought & Paid For

Geithner as an Example of Obama’s Brand of “Change”
Dear A-Letter Reader,
Some of us actually bought it.
“Hope,” “Change,” and “Yes we can.” The spirited mottos of newly-elected President Obama.
These days it’s sounding much more like “Yes, we can change hope,” as Barack’s zealous inexperience collides with one of the steepest learning curves ever faced by an American President.
But despite a handful of alarming early mistakes – like appointing several tax-dodgers to what will no doubt be the “spendiest” administration in U.S. history – surely Obama can bring some kind of change to the White House. It won’t be politics as usual, right? And it especially won’t be some deplorable Chicago brand of pay-for-play politics, right?
Despite the “truthiness” of Barack’s promises…the cold, hard facts would suggest otherwise.
Ladies & Gentlemen of the Jury, I Give You Tim Geithner
You know, George W. Bush left a vacuum in the White House when he left. There wasn’t anyone left who could kill the markets with a single speech. Well…we’re happy to report that Tim Geithner stepped up to that challenge and met it head-on, tanking the Dow by about 400 points in his first speech.
Tim Geithner. You may recall that he was one of the few Federal Reserve representatives who could explain the Bear Stearns deal in layman’s terms. He’s a young and uneasy looking go-getter with a silver spoon lodged down his throat. He’s not a big bank alumnus like Paulson. And he was picked by the demagogue of “change,”…so we all agreed to overlook his shady, tax-dodging ways.
But he’s got other talents as well.
And no, we don’t mean making funny faces and embarrassing poses for the camera (which we’re convinced to be his true purpose).
No, he’s a master of seeming like he’s in two pockets at the same time. Incredible really. All at once, this “rich kid” has for his whole career seemed to be a champion of the people and a friend of the banks. Nevermind the fact that this perception is now falling apart on a daily basis.
But in the words of history’s bestselling book, “No man can serve two masters.” So we’ve got to ask ourselves…who’s little Timmy really working for?
The Proof…
A quick scan of the Internet will give you the table listed (at the right). These are the top contributors to Barack Obama’s Presidential campaign. This isn’t a “secret” or a “conspiracy,” it’s a matter of public record.
Goldman Sachs   —-$955,344
Citigroup $633,418
UBS AG $505,017
On a tangent, it’s remarkable to see that all these banks could still muster campaign money…despite needing taxpayer relief to the tune of tens – and even hundreds – of billions of dollars. Then again, it’s probably good business…campaign contributions will keep the gravy train from getting derailed.
But we circled these three names in particular for a reason.
You see, something strange happened on the way to the Treasury. After months of Obama railing against the wicked ways of corporate lobbyists, Geithner appointed the former chief lobbyist of Goldman Sachs to serve as his head of staff.
Just wait…it gets better.
Geithner’s new deputy secretary is a former CEO of Citigroup. Another CFO from Citigroup is now assistant to the President…and one of his assistants also came from Citigroup. To finish out the roster, a member of Obama’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board…yeah, he used to work at UBS.
But wait; there’s more.
Geithner’s “Brain Trust” of unofficial advisors includes John Thain – who formerly worked with both Goldman and Merrill Lynch – Gerald Corrigan (another former Goldman exec) and Hank Paulson (yet another former Goldman Exec). The icing on the cake here is Alan Greenspan, who exploited his own disastrous mismanagement of the Federal Reserve in a brief stint with Pimco last year, who’s also got Geithner’s ear.
Which leads us to ask…
Is there Any Question as to WHO is Steering Our Ship of State?
To which the prompt answer is; no.
And to be honest; it would be hard to argue that this is anything other than a perfect example of “Blagojevich-style” pay-for-play Chicago politics. This isn’t a conspiracy theory…it’s perfectly spelled out in plain sight. “You help me get elected, I’ll help you fleece my taxpayers,” “Deal!”
But let’s pull back and take our anger out of the situation.
Yes, banks are good for the economy. That much is obvious. And when the banks get their “just deserts” (as in the 1930s or the Panic of 1873) the people suffer for decades. Sounds pretty simple.
But this isn’t the 1930s, my friend.
And we’ve got to remember that Paulson, Geithner, Thain and Greenspan…it was their leadership that got us here in the first place. Their institutions…their organizations that killed the golden goose and the financial system, bringing the economy down with it.
It’s almost like getting into a cab with Evel Knievel behind the wheel. Thanks…but no thanks.
Editor’s Note: Sovereign Society Chairman John Pugsley’s special “lies” report will prepare you for the “pay-for-play” half-truths that infest every aspect of Washington and Wall Street. Don’t risk being broadsided by a Ponzi Scheme that makes Madoff’s scam look like chump change,

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The Rhetorical President

February 17, 2009

They are making terrible mistakes – scary – stupid – mistakes. Don

The Rhetorical President

By: Janice Shaw Crouse (CWA)

The use of language to persuade is a skill much admired since ancient times. Few people become leaders without the ability to move others to agree with their arguments. Rightly understood, rhetoric is only one of the tools of persuasion; the other two, logic and dialectic, are required to truly change peoples’ minds. During the presidential campaign, Barack Obama awed the media and voters alike with his rhetorical skills. He continues to awe as he uses rhetorical manipulation to sell the stimulus package to the American public.

Legitimate rhetoric balances the skills of public speaking with sound logic and appeals to commonality with the audience on the issue at hand. It is an understatement to say that Barack Obama is skilled at using the language of his opponents to sell his ideas. During the 2009 campaign, he convinced a significant number of evangelicals that he was one of them. He convinced people of polar opposite points of view that he was on their side. Now, as the nation’s top snake oil salesman, he is working the room to sell his stimulus package — a package that experts agree will stimulate the Democratic constituency groups more than the economy.
The snake oil is especially obvious in his slick salesmanship as well as his shrewd manipulation of rhetoric.

SPECTOR + COLLINS + SNOWE = SPECOLSNOW –

“SPECKLED SNOW”

Starting on Capitol Hill, he brought Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine), Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) and Arlen Specter (R-Pennsylvania), the most gullible of the GOP senators, into the Oval Office to overwhelm them with his dialectic; he shrewdly played on his commonality with them on specific ideas and people they mutually admired. One at a time, he worked his charm by stroking each one at their vulnerable points, and all three caved. They undermined their party’s hope for leverage, stomped on the principle of checks and balances, and ended the need for any future attempts for genuine bipartisanship. They also gave Obama the cover he needed during his first major political crisis and gave momentum to a massive trillion dollar plan that could burden the nation for the foreseeable future!
Emboldened by his success with the Three Stooges of Capitol Hill, the president shrewdly staged his first prime-time presidential news conference using all the gravitas of the White House East Room as a backdrop. I say “shrewdly” because the president rearranged seating of the White House Press Corp to give deference to the left. The major network stars were seated behind Ed Schulz, a liberal radio talk show host (Note that this administration plans to push the “Fairness Doctrine”), and reporters from the black media outlets. He shrewdly gave international exposure to media most friendly to his administration. Al Jazeera, Essence, and the Saudi Press Agency were given seats. Sam Stein, a leftist blogger from the Huffington Post, was recognized for a question, thus getting international exposure. No wonder there were no follow-up questions or challenges to the president’s remarks. The mainstream media, whose worshipful coverage assured him the White House, couldn’t have liked the new arrangement, but apparently decided that the slight didn’t warrant legitimate grilling of the president during his first press conference.
Mr. Obama was also shrewd in his use of rhetorical devices that many consider demagogic and are, at a minimum, deceptive and misleading. For instance, he frequently used generalization and polarization:
  • The stimulus bill would mean the difference between catastrophe and creating four million jobs
  • Liberal Democrats just want to spend more money, but the GOP vetoes all progress
  • Everything was the fault of the Bush administration, so Obama’s administration is facing “unprecedented” problems
  • Everything the new administration is doing has never been done before
  • Republican leaders are doing “nothing,” while his team is producing plans that will perform miracles
He conveyed a distortion of what the ancient rhetoricians called “ethos.” The ancient concept includes the image that is conveyed by the person trying to persuade. Obama almost never smiles, and during the press conference he projected, as usual, the image of self-control, maturity and deliberation. His suits are always impeccable, and his informal wear is “cool.” His demeanor projects a seriousness that is softened by his picture perfect family life. During the press conference, he seemed utterly sincere, honest and candid, while dishing out statements that could be thoroughly discounted by any first-year reporter pounding a beat. He skillfully turned to humor in order to disdain and dismiss the only penetrating question of the whole press conference. When Major Garrett of Fox News asked the president about Vice President Joe Biden’s comment regarding the administration having a 30 percent chance of failing on any given initiative, the president did not hesitate to make Biden the butt of his joke. The end result was to convey the impression that he is the savior of the nation, while everyone else, including his party and his vice president, stands as a barrier to progress.
For a man who promised bipartisanship by “working with the majority for change,” he makes ample use of what he claimed to despise, “the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas that for too long have strangled our politics.”

Several of President Obama’s appointments have been controversial because of the nominees’ tax problems.  One nominee, however, is grabbing attention for another kind of ethical problem.  Dr. Janice Crouse, Director and Senior Fellow of Concerned Women for America’s (CWA) Beverly LaHaye Institute, wrote about the radical viewpoints of David Ogden, who is the nominee for Deputy Attorney General at the Department of Justice (DOJ).  Mr. Ogden would be second in command at the DOJ, and his apparent qualification for the position is a troubling 20-year career defending the rights of pornographers over the rights of women and children. He also has a disturbing record of defending abortion and promoting international laws over our own national laws. You can read Dr. Crouse’s article at www.cwfa.org and at www.townhall.com.

· Arie Hoekman, a representative of the United Nations Population Fund, recently declared at a colloquium in Mexico City that family breakdown is a triumph for human rights. Dr. Crouse responded, “How ironic that those who created the crisis are denying that crisis.  The data is in, and the experts agree that single-mother families and father absence have created a family structure that is detrimental to women and dangerous for children’s well-being.”  You can read about Hoekman’s remarks and Dr. Crouse’s response in a press release at www.cwfa.org.
· For the first time ever at a presidential press conference, a president made clear that he had a pre-approved list of questioners, most of them friendly to his administration.  More importantly, for his first prime-time press conference, Mr. Obama shrewdly pushed the proposed “Fairness Doctrine” by seating major network stars behind Ed Schulz, a liberal radio talk show host. He also gave seats to Al Jazeera and the Saudi Press Agency. Dr. Crouse discusses the press conference and analyzes the President’s use of rhetorical skills in trying to persuade the public to support his economic stimulus package in her article, “The Rhetorical President,” at www.AmericanThinker.com.
· We appreciate all you do to help us protect and defend Christian values in today’s society.  Our partnership will bear much fruit.
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Obama’s Rhetoric Is the Real ‘Catastrophe’

February 16, 2009

Remember – we were promised an Obamanation.

Obama’s Rhetoric Is the Real ‘Catastrophe’

In 1932, automobile production shriveled by 90%.
By BRADLEY R. SCHILLER
President Barack Obama has turned fearmongering into an art form. He has repeatedly raised the specter of another Great Depression. First, he did so to win votes in the November election. He has done so again recently to sway congressional votes for his stimulus package.
In his remarks, every gloomy statistic on the economy becomes a harbinger of doom. As he tells it, today’s economy is the worst since the Great Depression. Without his Recovery and Reinvestment Act, he says, the economy will fall back into that abyss and may never recover.
This fearmongering may be good politics, but it is bad history and bad economics. It is bad history because our current economic woes don’t come close to those of the 1930s. At worst, a comparison to the 1981-82 recession might be appropriate.  Consider the job losses that Mr. Obama always cites. In the last year, the U.S. economy shed 3.4 million jobs. That’s a grim statistic for sure, but represents just 2.2% of the labor force. From November 1981 to October 1982, 2.4 million jobs were lost — fewer in number than today, but the labor force was smaller. So 1981-82 job losses totaled 2.2% of the labor force, the same as now.
Job losses in the Great Depression were of an entirely different magnitude. In 1930, the economy shed 4.8% of the labor force. In 1931, 6.5%. And then in 1932, another 7.1%. Jobs were being lost at double or triple the rate of 2008-09 or 1981-82.
This was reflected in unemployment rates. The latest survey pegs U.S. unemployment at 7.6%. That’s more than three percentage points below the 1982 peak (10.8%) and not even a third of the peak in 1932 (25.2%). You simply can’t equate 7.6% unemployment with the Great Depression.
Other economic statistics also dispel any analogy between today’s economic woes and the Great Depression. Real gross domestic product (GDP) rose in 2008, despite a bad fourth quarter. The Congressional Budget Office projects a GDP decline of 2% in 2009. That’s comparable to 1982, when GDP contracted by 1.9%. It is nothing like 1930, when GDP fell by 9%, or 1931, when GDP contracted by another 8%, or 1932, when it fell yet another 13%.
Auto production last year declined by roughly 25%. That looks good compared to 1932, when production shriveled by 90%. The failure of a couple of dozen banks in 2008 just doesn’t compare to over 10,000 bank failures in 1933, or even the 3,000-plus bank (Savings & Loan) failures in 1987-88. Stockholders can take some solace from the fact that the recent stock market debacle doesn’t come close to the 90% devaluation of the early 1930s.
Mr. Obama’s analogies to the Great Depression are not only historically inaccurate, they’re also dangerous. Repeated warnings from the White House about a coming economic apocalypse aren’t likely to raise consumer and investor expectations for the future. In fact, they have contributed to the continuing decline in consumer confidence that is restraining a spending pickup. Beyond that, fearmongering can trigger a political stampede to embrace a “recovery” package that delivers a lot less than it promises. A more cool-headed assessment of the economy’s woes might produce better policies.
Mr. Schiller, an economics professor at the University of Nevada, Reno, is the author of “The Economy Today” (McGraw-Hill, 2007).
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Cartoon: Mt. Rushmore GASP

February 16, 2009

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Universities request federal economic stimulus money

December 17, 2008

Universities request federal economic stimulus money

Letter proposes giving millions to governors
Tuesday, December 16, 2008 BY VALERIE STRAUSS
Ann Arbor News

WASHINGTON – More than 40 higher-education leaders from across the country asked Congress today to commit 5 percent of any economic stimulus program to the nation’s colleges and universities.

The educators, led by Vartan Gregorian, president of the Carnegie Corporation of New York, an educational foundation, published an open letter in newspapers warning that state budget cuts have harmed the public educational enterprise that is at the heart of the nation’s long-term security.

The letter says that an investment of between $40 million and $45 million will help the country remain economically competitive.

Most of the money would go to public institutions, which educate 80 percent of all college students, although private schools could qualify.

Among those who signed the open letter are the leaders of state university systems in Wisconsin, Florida, New York and Texas. Others include University of California at Berkeley Chancellor Robert J. Birgeneau and the heads of several national higher-education associations.

** RIDICULOUS! **

SAMPLE: From the University of Michigan Financial Report 2008

“Today, the University of Michigan’s endowment is a collection of 6,500 separate funds with a total value of $7.6 billion at June 30, 2008.    At June 30 2008, U-M’s Endowment was the eighth largest among public and private universities.”

U of M Endowment Chart