Hamel: “When Washington Tries to ‘Win the Day,’ Americans Lose”
In the Huffington Post Public Notice Executive Director Gretchen Hamel editorializes, “‘Win the day’ is a common refrain in politics. Win enough days and you win the campaign/debate as the logic goes. The Price of Politics, the new book by Bob Woodward, chronicles Washington’s failure to compromise on a strategy to spur the economy while reining in widening deficits. It centers around the big policy fights from President Obama’s first term: health care, stimulus, the debt ceiling and tax cuts but the strategy at the heart of it all: ‘win the day.’ The result is a president and Congress too focused on what the other side is doing wrong and too timid to make bold decisions or compromises needed to get our economy back on track.” Click here to read the full op-ed.
“View from the Capitol: Free Cupcakes on the Hill”
The National Journal reports, “Bankrupting America, an education project of the nonprofit Public Notice, threw Capitol Hill staffers a ‘Not-So-Sweet Sixteen’ party Thursday, handing out more than 500 free cupcakes to commemorate the country reaching $16 trillion in debt. The cupcakes were provided by the food truck Cupcake Joy. Flavors included sweet potato, lemon and everyone’s favorite, red velvet. Event planners seemed surprised at how quickly the sweets disappeared.” Click here to see photos from the event.
New Bankrupting America Political Cartoon: A Not-So-Sweet 16 Party!
Unfortunately for America’s this Not-so-Sweet Sixteen comes with the bill as well. Check out our latest political cartoon below as the us national debt passes $16 trillion for the first time in history here: http://www.bankruptingamerica.org/political-cartoon-a-not-so-sweet-sixteen-party
Fed Pledges $40B Monthly Bond-Buying, “eclipses any concerns about inflation for now”
Bloomberg reports, “Ben S. Bernanke for the first time pledged that the Federal Reserve will buy bonds until the economy gets closer to his goals, cementing his place as the Fed’s most innovative chairman and signaling the battle against unemployment eclipses any concerns about inflation for now. The central bank yesterday announced its third round of large-scale asset purchases since 2008, with the difference that it didn’t set any limit on the ultimate amount it would buy or the duration of the program. Instead, Bernanke said stimulus will be expanded until the Fed sees ‘sustained improvement’ in the labor market.” According to The Hill, Bernanke commented on the decision saying, “‘We’ve seen unemployment basically in the same place it was in January. … We’ve seen not enough jobs growth to bring down the unemployment rate, and what we need to see is more progress. We’re just trying to get the economy moving in the right direction…”
Coming Soon: Lame Duck Kicking A Can
Roll Call reports, “Amid all the bluster about how high the stakes are and the vows by both parties to play out the game of chicken until they win, the approaching lame-duck session is more likely to come down to what lame ducks almost always come down to: punting until the next session of Congress. It has long been clear that Congress and the White House are leaving until after the elections the big questions about the renewal of Bush-era tax rates and whether to roll back pending spending cuts. While both sides seem to believe an electoral victory for their party will force the other to capitulate, those dynamics have rarely played out in lame-duck sessions of the past, and Congress as a whole has been more apt to defer to the next duly elected Congress on long-term decisions for the country’s fiscal policy.”
House Approves Short-Term Spending Bill, Fiscal Cliff Still Looms
The Associated Press reports, “Congress is moving to quash the threat of a government shutdown, but the prospect of a one-two punch of tax increases and slashing, automatic spending cuts will still confront lawmakers when they return to Washington after Election Day.
The House on Thursday passed a six-month stopgap spending bill to keep federal agencies running past the end of the budget year, the elections and into the spring. It effectively scratched a major item off of Congress’ to-do list heading into a potentially brutal postelection, lame duck session.
The bipartisan 329-91 House vote for the measure sent it to the Senate, which is expected to clear it next week for President Barack Obama’s signature, capping a year of futility and gridlock on the budget despite a hard-fought spending and deficit-reduction deal last summer. … While taking the possibility of a government shutdown out of the equation, the so-called fiscal cliff — a combination of automatic spending cuts and tax hikes set to slam the economy in January — still hangs over Congress and President Barack Obama.”
“Greece denies report it will need third bailout”
Reuters reports, “Greece’s finance minister on Thursday denied a report citing the country’s representative to the IMF as saying Athens would need a third bailout package. The euro weakened against the dollar on the report, which was later also denied by the official quoted in the article and came as international inspectors are mulling handing over the next tranche of Greece’s second aid package. … Cash-strapped Greece must come up with nearly 12 billion euros of extra cuts for the next two years to get the money, and it has fallen behind in reforms.”
“Last night in his speech President Obama invoked FDR. Then he saw the unemployment numbers and invoked WTF.” –Jay Leno
“Everyone is still talking about Bill Clinton’s speech last night in Charlotte. It was a remarkable speech, 45 minutes long and 6,000 words. Like the political version of the guitar solo from ‘Freebird.’” –Craig Ferguson
“We got some bad economic news. The United States has slipped further down the global ranking of the world’s most competitive economies. We’re now #7. Switzerland is number one. Romney said, ‘See, that’s why I keep my money there.’” –Jay Leno