Jebbie Claps His Hands For Tinkerbell

That sound you hear is every accounting teacher throughout history hitting the floor, stone cold dead when The Smart Bush® endorsed Pixie Dust Accounting.

That is how you end up with a war off the books, and no domestic spending.

What They Said


NYTimes Editorial: “Prosecute Torturers and Their Bosses”

The two greatest disappointments I have had with the Obama Administration have been that they never investigated/prosecuted The Bush Administration for war crimes that Chimpy and Blam-blam have all admitted—if not bragged about—committing; and that not a single bankster has had to suffer a moment in court for wrecking the economy.

One of the snarkier, on-going criticisms on this blog has been to urge the administration to hold a mirror under the nose of AG Holder to find out if he is still breathing. It sounds like the NYTimes is joining us.

2016: Saddle-Up Another Goat!

choo-choo train

Rob Portman’s Iowa tour


Asked about his own prospects for a presidential bid in 2016, Portman said: “I’m totally focused on 2014 now.”

“As you can tell,” he said, eating a blueberry croissant at Caribou Coffee on Ingersoll Avenue in Des Moines, “I’ve been in I think eight states already and I’ll probably be in another five or six before the end of this month. That’s my focus. Getting this majority is, I think, the first important step toward turning this country around, and frankly, winning in 2016. But after the election I’ll take a look at it. I am worried about the direction of our country. And that’s my passion. But I’m going to wait until after the election.”

Bawh-ha-ha! Rob Portman was Chimpy McStagger’s Budget Director. Let’s watch him try to dodge that ball, so to speak.

Blogger Going Down!

From time to time we’ve tried to give our pal Jurassic Pork, proprietor of the venerable blog Welcome Back To Pottersville a boost when the wolf is at his door, huffing and puffing.

The wolf is back, and his lungs are in fine form.

If anyone can throw some love his way (or some money) it will be received with gratitude and will be well-used. The recession has hit a lot of us really hard, but those on the northside of 50 also face age discrimination and through no fault of their own have had a harder time crawling out of the 2008 hole than other demographics.

UPDATE – I’ve said it before: Scissorheads rule. Keep the luv going for JP, if you can.

Goodbye, Eric Holder UPDATED

We learned today of the resignation of US AG Eric Holder:

Eric Holder Jr., the nation’s first black U.S. attorney general, is preparing to announce his resignation Thursday after a tumultuous tenure marked by civil rights advances, national security threats, reforms to the criminal justice system and 5 1/2 years of fights with Republicans in Congress.

Two sources familiar with the decision tell NPR that Holder, 63, intends to leave the Justice Department as soon as his successor is confirmed, a process that could run through 2014 and even into next year. A former U.S. government official says Holder has been increasingly “adamant” about his desire to leave soon for fear that he otherwise could be locked in to stay for much of the rest of President Obama’s second term.

Holder’s work on Civil Rights was outstanding, but he was also beholden to the status quo when it came to people with power: Holder never found a single person to prosecute for Wall Street’s criminal looting of the global economy, and never brought charges against the admitted war criminals of the Bush Administration.

I’m not sure we would notice the difference if he left today, which is probably a good thing: it is unlikely that the Republicans would approve a replacement, especially if they gain control of the Senate in 2014 as many pundits are predicting.

Paul Constant at the SLOG says it so much better than I ever could.

I didn’t have one single reaction upon reading this morning that Attorney General Eric Holder is resigning… Holder has a spotty record on civil liberties—he’s taken heat from both the left and the far right as an enemy of freedom of the press and a fearsome enforcer when it comes to whistleblowers. He let Wall Street and the big banks trample the middle class. He deserves all that criticism—Holder has done a lot to keep George W. Bush’s paranoid, power-obsessed America alive for another eight years—but he’s taken a lot of criticism that he doesn’t deserve, too. The New York Times, for instance, describes Holder as a “lightning rod” for “partisan venom,” which is a decidedly mixed metaphor that somehow works perfectly.

He’s also been a force for good. Holder has been a strong supporter of civil rights, gay marriage, and reduced prison time for nonviolent drug offenders. He’s been permissive of Washington and Colorado’s experiments with legalized marijuana. We just got an e-mail from Christian ninnies Morality in Media saying Holder’s resignation “can only give hope to those suffering the ravages of the pornography pandemic in America.” Anyone painting him as a faux-liberal is intentionally obscuring half the man’s record. Anyone trying to paint him as a strictly liberal politician is missing the point, too.

So Bill Gates walks into a bar…

…and the average income rises.

choo-choo train

However, median income is in some ways a better measure?

The census numbers on what American families made last year are as mediocre as they are predictable. We now know that if your household brought in $51,939 in income last year, you were right at the 50th percentile, with half of households doing better and half doing worse. In inflation-adjusted terms, that is up a mere 0.3 percent from 2012. If you’re counting, that’s an extra $180 in annual real income for a middle-income American family. Don’t spend your extra $3.46 a week all in one place.

There’s a chart in the NYTimes article that shows more clearly than anything how far we’ve fallen with The Miracle Of The Bush Economy began. The GDP has grown by leaps and bounds as America’s multination corporations have benefitted greatly from killing off the working class and moving operations off-shore.

I know technically we left the Great Recession years and years ago, and outside of the rarified air of Silicon Valley (the board rooms and suites, not so much in the cubicle farms and veal-fattening pens) and Wall Street, I really don’t know of anyone who is doing better; I do know some people who are holding steady, but most people in my circle are doing considerably worse. So while the technical definition is that the US is in good times, to most of us we are well on the way to a lost decade, if not a lost generation.

WSJ: Portman in the 2016 Goat Rodeo?



Chimpy McStagger’s Budget Director? That Rob Portman?


Killer material, dude!

What I’m reading today


This review of Little Timmy Geithner’s book, Stress Test: The Con Artist Wing of the Democratic Party. Here’s a taste:

The book is full of narratives, facts, and statements that are, well, untrue, or at the very least, highly misleading. Despite its length, there are also serious omissions that suggest an intention to mislead, as well as misrepresentations of his critics’ arguments. As I went further into Geithner’s narrative, even back into his college days, I got the sense that I was seeing only a brilliantly scrubbed surface, that there were nooks and crannies hidden away. It struck me that I was reading the memoirs of an incredibly savvy and well-bred grifter, the kind that the American WASP establishment of financiers, foundation officials, and spies produces in such rich abundance. I realize this is a bold claim, because it’s an indictment not just of Geithner but also of those who worked for him at Treasury and at the Federal Reserve, as well as indictment of the Clinton-era finance team of Robert Rubin, Larry Summers, Alan Greenspan, Michael Barr, Jason Furman, and other accomplices.


Geithner is at heart a grifter, a petty con artist with the right manners and breeding to lie at the top echelons of American finance at a moment when the government and financial services industry needed someone to be the face of their multi-trillion dollar three card monte. He’s going to make his money, now that he’s done living his life of fantastic power after his upbringing of remarkable mysterious privilege. After reading this book and documenting lie after lie after lie, I’m convinced that there’s more here than just a self-serving corrupt official. There’s an entire culture, of figures at Treasury, the Federal Reserve, in the entire Democratic Party elite structure, and in the world of journalism, a culture in which Geithner is seen as some sort of role model.

It’s a long review, but I’m already enjoying it. From Vice, no less.

“Would you liked fries with your career?”

Ugh: Most Of The Jobs Added Since The Recession Pay Low Wages


Four years into the recovery, low-wage industries have accounted for 44 percent of job growth, but they only made up 22 percent of the losses during the recession. These jobs pay between $9.48 and $13.33 an hour — even that higher wage is only about $27,000 a year. At the same time, mid-wage industries saw 37 percent of the job losses but have only made up about a quarter of employment growth. High-wage industries accounted for 41 percent of the losses but have only seen 30 percent of the recovery’s gains. In all, low-wage industries employ 1.85 million more people than when the recession began, while the other two groups have lost nearly 2 million jobs.

I don’t think that this comes as a surprise to anyone, really. If you are above a certain age, you won’t be offered these jobs, either. I know that by the economic definition we are no longer in a recession, but it sure feels like a depression. Thanks Chimpy for your lasting legacy of making everything worse.

(Think Progress)