Commenter Archive

Comments by Rex Caruthers

On “Contention of the Day – Cut to the Bone

I support the Tea Party

Does the TP support QE2?,I haven't heard it discussed. I know that Ron/Rand Paul want to do away with the Fed,is that the TP position?


It may be that the TPers fear if we are in a Depression that only Government intervention,(War,Shovel Ready Projects),is the Remedy. So,of course,they don't want that;also,if we are in a D,and they are in power,their ideas have to address it,which could be a very uncomfortable position,how does small limited Government,fiscal restraint,Family Values address a Depression in a nation of 300M citizens?
I believe we are in a period of election cycle Repudiation,2006/8 repudiated 2000/2/4,2010 will repudiate 2006/8,and 2012 will repudiate 2010. And the FACT of GD2,repudiates all the economic voodoo of the last 40 years.


In order to facilitate communications on Economics,my premise is that we entered a full blown Depression in July 2007 in which we are now in our 4th year so it's very early in the Depression process. If you disagree with my premise,you have plenty of company,Ben B,TimG,BHO,
Wall Street,The Banks,and most Economists.*
It is peculiar that the Conservatives/Tea Partiers only repeat certain very tame mantras,they aren't discussing the True Unemployment %,and the deeper problems we have along with BHO's utter failure to confront these issues to include Securitization,Shadow Banking,Our Balance Sheet Fraud among dozens of other issues that just won't go away. Why are they so timid,I'm sure MC has an opinion?

*Of Course,in early 2000 when I was discussing the risks to our economy of Securitization/Complex Derivatives having learned that process from Orange County and Enron,the same line-up was in place.


unusually stupid

It is stupid,but for different reasons. What neither the Free Marketers or the Keynesians realize is that there's no way to recreate the "demand" that fueled the 70% of GDP that came from consumer DEBT that constituted the American economy from 1988-2007. The demand has been eroded by the Consumer Debt Overhang,not much of which can be discharged by Bankruptcy. (From 1978-2005,the old style Bankruptcy system helped sustain Consumer Demand.) It has also been eroded by an awareness that if we need to obtain something new,all we need to do is go to our basement or garage,and we discover troves of hidden treasure that we have already paid for or already used our MC for.


Hey CK,it looks like Krugman read your post and commented:

"Indeed, there has been a noticeable change in the rhetoric of the government of Prime Minister David Cameron over the past few weeks — a shift from hope to fear. In his speech announcing the budget plan, George Osborne, the chancellor of the Exchequer, seemed to have given up on the confidence fairy — that is, on claims that the plan would have positive effects on employment and growth.
Instead, it was all about the apocalypse looming if Britain failed to go down this route. Never mind that British debt as a percentage of national income is actually below its historical average; never mind that British interest rates stayed low even as the nation’s budget deficit soared, reflecting the belief of investors that the country can and will get its finances under control. Britain, declared Mr. Osborne, was on the “brink of bankruptcy.”
What happens now? Maybe Britain will get lucky, and something will come along to rescue the economy. But the best guess is that Britain in 2011 will look like Britain in 1931, or the United States in 1937, or Japan in 1997. That is, premature fiscal austerity will lead to a renewed economic slump. As always, those who refuse to learn from the past are doomed to repeat it."


China is playing with a set of books that would make Madoff blush

And We're not?


U.S. wants G20 commitment to let currencies rise, Reuters

Excerpt: The United States wants the Group of 20 countries to reduce global economic imbalances by committing to curb trade surpluses or deficits and by letting currencies rise more freely, a senior U.S. official said on Wednesday.
Ahead of weekend meetings of G20 finance ministers in Gyeongju, South Korea, the Treasury Department official made clear Washington wants currency values to be a focal point and sees current account levels as a vital part of the discussion.
China wasn't mentioned by name but Beijing's practice of managing the value of its yuan has angered the United States, which argues the currency's low value is fostering global currency tensions. (Expect a China/US clash this weekend)

LOL,after decades of dogma about Globalization and Free Trade,we change course,not to save the American middle class,but to save Obama,and our "Economic dominance" LOL REDUX.


You may be right about the irrelevance of the elections

QE2 is a done deal,believe it,no matter who wins in two weeks.


Focus, Rex we’re talking about the UK

No we're not,they're irrelevant since they controlled the world currency,and their cost cutting is a pitiful futility. Keep in mind what was said back when by John Connally to our Euro Alies,“The dollar is our currency, but your problem.”


It no longer matters who controls the Congress or Presidency as regards the nation's fiscal policy as of today. Of course anything can change,but it appears that the die is set on QE2. All this means is that a policy of inflating our currency further is the current tactic of the Fed. The method will be,AGAIN,for the Fed to purchase toxic assets at the value that the Banks place on them. The target is an Inflation rate of 2% which,the hope is,will stimulate demand(if your money goes down in value tommorow,it will be spent today),and decrease unemployment to an official 6-8%rate. The potential negative effects of QE2 are so numerous and complex that we should discuss them individually,but just a few of these unintended consequences could be hyperinflation,civil war,or world war,oh well,anything is better than losing our Imperial Economic power in order to become Western Europe.

On “Whitmanegger


The Moral Majority emanating from the Silent Majority, the TP has few minorities,and few liberals,it is the Evangelical nation,

On “Two Questions regarding Post-Christian Religion

The Essence of Taoism is that the Universe being "Perfect" cannot be improved upon. This has been widely misinterpreted as a call for inaction. The Tao Te Ching is a very popular document,but again,very easy to misunderstand.
When LT talks about "Perfection" he is referring to a Long Term Process. In Human Affairs,If we were able to count every good action/thought,every evil action thought throughout history,we would discover that there is a constant ratio between the two en masse,that is the "perfection". But this Constant ratio varies in the short term. That is why to describe Tism as a philosophy of Inaction is inaccurate,we need to do as much good today as possible in order to balance out the volume of evil that is bound to be coming tomorrow. If we practice "Inaction",the ratios will change for the worse,probably. Tism is very aware of the seven years rule/FAT-LEAN.
TaoIsm contains the Essence of/and what's best in both Conservative and Liberal political thought.


I've been a practicing Taoist(Meaning "Taoism" as an Ism is rarely or never reflected upon,but is merely lived)for Decades. It is the source of my political opinions.

" Chapter 69

In using the military, there is a saying:
I dare not be the host, but prefer to be the guest
I dare not advance an inch, but prefer to withdraw a foot

This is called marching in formation without formation
Raising arms without arms
Grappling enemies without enemies
Holding weapons without weapons
There is no greater disaster than to underestimate the enemy
Underestimating the enemy almost made me lose my treasures

So when evenly matched armies meet
The side that is compassionate shall win

On “Shouting FIRE in a crowded world

Here's a slow learner:40 years slow

David Stockman on the American Economy
Peter Wehner - 09.17.2010 - 2:42 PM
David Stockman, who was President Reagan’s first OMB director, gave an interview to the Wall Street Journal’s Alan Murray. I certainly don’t agree with everything Stockman says. He has almost nothing to say about how to create growth in the economy. And Stockman’s betrayal of President Reagan (when he published The Triumph of Politics: Why the Reagan Revolution Failed) was troubling then and remains troubling today. (In the interview, Stockman addresses the SEC criminal charges that were made against him, charges that were later dropped.) Still, Stockman is not a stupid man, and his analysis of America’s precarious fiscal situation, while alarming, is worth listening to.


MC/The FIRE economy isn't the problem itself;it's the tax advantages and other structural advantages that the Government has bestowed on the FIRE economy.

On “Among the things about which I have no time to care


I read his book,and I also spoke with him about it,I knew him since the Seventies when I was a law book salesman in Century City,and he was my client,Anyway,he told me,and it was mentioned in his book that 40% of all the documents relating to the JFK Coup d Etat are still not public records being in the hands of the Kennedy Family,FBI/CIA, we'll all be dead before they're released if ever,so his "definitive" book is 60% definitive. He told me that he doubts if anything in those documents will contradict his opinion,and I agree with him,after 100 years,the holders of those documents might have made some changes.
I also spoke with him,off the record,about Manson,and he admitted that the family was perfectly capable of carrying out those killings without any direction from CM,therfore the jury should have given up a verdict of Not guilty based on reasonable doubt/the family members/Watson/Houton/Kerwinkel still had their free will,therfore CM,who wasn't present,was probably,LEGALLY,Not Guilty.


the fourth, Lowenstein??

NO, Malcom. I'm so glad you know all the "facts": about these killings,but,pardon mois,I think it's all made up. I have no opinions, because we have no facts. All we have is dis/misinformation/and that is just an opinion.


@ Rex Caruthers:
Sometimes there aren’t any good alternatives.


truly exceptional American idea”

CK,I,at one time,was the true believer of all the true believers in the American Myth. I was also the last kid in my class to find out about Santa Claus /The Easter Bunny
What did me in were the Four Assasinations,and the fiddle f------g around with investigating them followed by the V War,I admire the Ability to live thru all that unscathed,


CK/More Literature/My Favorites top twenty

I play these mind games all the time,but here is my actual top 20 list for how I feel today,this is not a list of what I should like,or what I did like,but my favorites in the here and now,not necessarily in order:
Subject to change without notice/

Othello/The unravelable mystery of Chaos
Solzhenitsyn's RED WHEEL/The Bible of Twentieth Century History
Tess of The D'Urbervilles/Awesome portrait of Abuse
Agammenon/The Handbook of Reversal of Fortune
Gatsby/Unexplainable Poetic Genius
God is a Bullet/Boston Teran/Unique one time wonder
Jude the Obscure/The maddening power of Sex denied
Jane Eyre/Greatest Novel of 19th Century England
Lady Chatterly/The First Sentence
Romeo/Juliet/Universal Experience
Who's Afraid Virginia Woolf/Look back on our marriages
The Cenci/Ultimate Portrait of Institutionalized Evil
Road Not Taken/The Road not Taken makes the list because it is the least understood/most mistaught poem in our language
WasteLand/The Metaphor
Prufrock/A Zombie Contentions type
Ozimandias&Second Coming/ I can't help myself;these most overquoted poems are so seductive that even the abuse/misuse of them,won't diminish the illusions they create
Stopping Snowy Evening/The Siren Call of Death
Revolutionary Road/The Most vivid portrayl of the Pathetic in American Literature
An AMERICAN TRAGEDY/The Underbelly of Ambition in America
FOOLS OF TIME/Northrup Frye/121 pages that you can spend a lifetime reading/rereading/Political analysis of the first order


CK/I forgot the Literature:

Shakespeare,Sonnet 124,"---Fools of Time*,Which Die for Goodness,who have lived for Crime."

*Title of Northrop Frye's book referred to yesterday.


It’s your funeral

Agreed,but I would so miss your attempts to defend the indefensible,the domestic status quo which guarantees our national bankruptcy,and the foreign policy status quo which has made us the laughing stock of the world. I believe that the Neo-Con simple mindedness might still be underlying your inability to committ to any change in either because you envision change to be an unacceptable criticism to Exceptional America. Here's Pete Wehner's version of this emotion,"It is hard to overstate the importance of, and the sheer brilliance and prescience of, the American Constitution. It established the world’s first stable democratic government and provided the governing framework for the most powerful and benevolent nation in human history."* If we don't get past this fairy tale mentality,the nation is going to be filing Chapter 7,and our cities are going to be burning rubble either from both internal&external attack. My new nickname is Cassandra.LOL


I'm not talking about what would work "Strategically",but what would work symbolically. I would have loved to see a million Christians,Jews,and Atheists tromping around the "Holy" land,willy nilly,and while we were there en masse,we should have been sitting on(Squattors rights)some nice oil properties. Do you really think that after that spectacle,they would have wanted us back?


I'M Hanging(myself)LOL

BTW,looking at my list of wars fought on non-American soil,ALL OF THEM,I get the feeling that Bush's mantra,"Fight the War over there,so we don't have to fight it here" is merely a continuation of the American War Tradition.
9/11 gave us an initial preview of what so many other nations have experienced from time to time,and we didn't like it very much. A decade later,it's still an oozing wound.
Do we really believe that the citizens of those nations that from time to time we bombed into the stone age,love us as we love ourselves? BUT,the unfortunate "Truth" about 9/11 is that Terrorism works on America,and we can be destroyed by a successful series of terror attacks. As long as there remains no specific target to drop our nukes,we're sitting Ducks. That's the main reason that we should have reacted to 9/11 WW2 style;we needed to communicate to the Terrorists in a manner they would never forget. We needed to launch a WW2 size army into the NE,and the message being,for any attack,WE'LL BE BACK.


where they do not fit

Check out my list in #12,tell me you don't see a pattern of generating war in other people's back yard while generating unrealistic scenarios about our RISK. Iran could use the same MO against us,we are aiding Israel who is an existential threat to Iran(200 Nukes) therfore we are committing agression against Iran.


CK understands my bigger point in #18,and its major weakness,that it involves a criticism of our foreign policy since 1917,making my point in effect,to create an alternate reality for the period 1917-1941 vis a vis Germany,if we hadn't aggressed in 1917,things might not have been so bloody later. Had Germany won WW1,things might have been more like the aftermath of the Franco-Prussian War. However,The Allies paid dearly for extracting their many ozs of blood at Versailles,as did the Bad guys.

*Comment archive for non-registered commenters assembled by email address as provided.



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