October 12, 2008

In Case You Missed It

I posted this back in March 2005:

Greenspan Must Go

It has always been just a question of time before US Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan would be revealed as a pro-Fascist Bush neo-con stooge. That time is now upon us:
The chairman of the US Federal Reserve, Alan Greenspan, has admitted he made a mistake in 2001 when he defended President George Bush's tax cuts, which led to the turnaround of a large budget surplus at the end of the Clinton presidency to a budget deficit this year of more than $US400 billion ($506 billion).

Instead of a projected surplus of $US5.6 trillion by 2011, the budget deficit is now expected to be $US4 trillion by that date if the tax cuts become permanent.
Back in 2001, Greenspan was backing Bush's tax cuts for the rich with the ridiculous claim that budget surpluses were too big and that the US foreign debt would be paid off too quickly! Now he is attempting to use the old neo-con "groupthink" defence (who could have guessed there were no WMDs/Al-Quaeda links/limits to US borrowing?).
Under vigorous and often aggressive questioning by Hillary Clinton, Dr Greenspan, looking decidedly uncomfortable, said that, with the benefit of hindsight, he had been mistaken in his view about budget surpluses.

"We were confronted at the time with an almost universal expectation amongst experts that we were dealing with a very large surplus for which there seemed to be no end," he said. "I look back and I would say to you, if confronted with the same evidence we had back then, I would recommend exactly what I recommended then. Turns out we were all wrong".

"Not all of us," snapped Senator Clinton.
You go, girl!

It's like an immature kid maxing out a swathe of new credit cards while boasting to the world about how fast his new car is, how big his new boat is... Sooner or later the credit card companies are going to put a stop on the card and call in the debt, even if it means they themselves make a loss.
The United States' deficit in the broadest measure of international trade soared to an all-time high of $US665.9 billion ($A842.91 billion) in 2004, showing in stark terms the speed with which the country is becoming indebted to the rest of the world.
In this case, the global lenders have to worry that putting a halt to the neo-con adventure could trigger a global recession, if not another Depression. But it's time to put a stop to the game.

Greenspan's "mistake" has cost the US taxpayer around $10 trillion. If that isn't grounds for resignation (if not dismissal) then I don't know what is. A more honourable and less complicit President would put the man in jail.


Bukko_in_Australia said...

So what are you writing today that will seem prescient three years from now?

I know, all of it...

gandhi said...

You still here, Bukko? :-)

I am not writing anything much, just drowning in Schadenfreude.

Actually, I have notched up around 50 pages of comments at Glenn Greenwalds blog since I stopped posting here, you can read them here if you like.

And yesterday I upset Atrios, or at least Ntodd, when I suggested that he night want to at least MENTION Cynthia McKinney once in a while.

Oh well, maybe in a year or two, guys like that will realise that President Obama (assuming he hasn't been shot) is not going to fix their problems.

Bukko_in_Australia said...

Still here, all right. Got back last Saturday and started a run of midnight shifts on Monday. Jet lag, meet sleep deprivation. You two are MADE for each other!

Europe was not as much fun as past times. More transportation friction, like having a flight from Rome to Paris booked on Alitalia and not knowing from day to day whether it would be in business, or being dicked over for 300 euros by Air France because our bags exceeded the 20-kg limit (and not by much, either) thanks to the four bottles of good Italian wine we brought back. Now each of those bottles has an extra 75 euros added to the price tag!

It was surreal to be sitting in ritzy hotel rooms across Europe watching the economic collapse gather steam. Mrs. Bukko, who's never been fond of here, was saying how eager she was to get back to Oz, where the situation is relatively stable.

Not that we're bothered (touch head.) We actually carried gold TO Switzerland. Makes no sense of having a stack of Maple Leafs hidden at my house. If (more likely WHEN) the gold bubble commences (why not? The finance maggots have made a bubble out of everything else, in order to suck out more money as funds slosh up and down. But it's harder to sell it quickly here when the time is right; we'd get paid in Aussie dollars (not so good lately) and the tax man would be notified. I'm not Frank Lowy, after all!

One of our dinky-di local friends, guy who just retired as a bureaucrat for the Melbourne Port Authority, told us about his financial devastation when we got back. He had dabbled (or maybe more) in the market with his super, and with the market crushing and the exchange rate swoon, he's worth about 50% less in the space of several months. Instead of us giving him tips for what to see in Italy, he's looking at caravan parks where his wife is from in Queensland. I hope you're fairing well.

As for McKinney, I filled out my absentee ballot today. Mrs. Bukko dissuaded me from voting for her and the Greens. Says Obama needs every vote, even in safely blue states like California, to make it harder for the fascist bastards to cheat on the electoral numbers. Even though it's Obama, I still feel like a tool for voting for one of the major parties.


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