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Mort Zuckerman Laments "The End Of American Optimism", Takes His Criticism Of Obama To A Whole New Level

Tyler Durden's picture


Mort Zuckerman has not kept his displeasure with Obama's economic policies secret. A mere two months ago, the Boston Properties Chariman penned "Obama Is Barely Treading Water" - one of the most critical missives by the corporate oligarchy targeted at the president. A few days ago, he followed up with an even more angry op-ed for the WSJ, titled simply enough: "The End of American Optimism" which concludes simply that the gridlock in the economy, driven by the two sets of opposing interest of Wall Street and Main Street is strategically spilling over into the political arena, and that the country is pretty much doomed to years of economic deterioration unless a clear, independent leader emerges in the meantime (and whose candidacy is not tactically "blocked" by the money lobby of Wall Street, which is the only party more than happy to preserve the status quo): "if
the economic scene these days is daunting, the political scene is
downright depressing. We have a paralyzed system. Neither the Democrats
nor the Republicans seem able to find common ground to address what is
clearly going to be an ongoing employment crisis. Finding that common
ground is a job opportunity for real leaders.

From the Wall Street Journal:

The End of American Optimism

Our brief national encounter with optimism is now well and truly over. We have had the greatest fiscal and monetary stimulus in modern times. We have had a whole series of programs to pay people to buy cars, purchase homes, pay off their mortgages, weatherize their homes, and install solar paneling on their roofs. Yet the recovery remains feeble and the aftershocks of the post-bubble credit collapse are ongoing.

We are at least 2.5 million jobs short of getting back to the unemployment rate of under 8% promised by the Obama administration. Concern grows that we are looking at a double-dip recession and hovering on the brink of a destructive deflation. Things are bad enough for Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke to have characterized the economic outlook late last month as "unusually uncertain."

Are we at the end of the post-World War II period of growth? Tons of money have been shoveled in to rescue reckless banks and fill the huge hole in the economy, but nothing is working the way it normally had in all our previous crises.

Rather, we are in what a number of economists are referring to as the "new normal." This is a much slower-growing economy that, recent surveys have revealed, is causing many Americans to distance themselves from the long-held assumption that their children will have it better than they.

What was thought to be normal in the context of post-World War II recoveries? One is that four quarters into the recovery, real GDP would expand at an annual rate over 6%. We are coming out of the current recession at a 2.4% growth rate.

We did enjoy a GDP boost from a buildup of inventories anticipating a recovery at normal speed, but it didn't happen. David Rosenberg, chief economist of Gluskin Sheff, regards it as "frightening" that whereas the "normal" rate of increase in final sales is 4% annually, this time sales have averaged only 1.2%, the weakest revival in recorded history.

At this point after the onset of a recession, employment payrolls have typically exceeded 700,000 jobs above the previous peak. In this recession, we are still down roughly eight million jobs from the December 2007 peak. As for consumer confidence, the Conference Board survey shows an average a full 20 points below the average lows of previous recessions.

There seems to be a structural change in the American economy. The
relationship of household debt to income has proven unsustainable. The
ratio is normally established somewhere below 100%, but in 2007 the debt
ratio hit 131% of income. It has now fallen to 122%, but at this pace
it would take another five years to bring it under 100%. The pre-bubble
norm was 70%. To get to this ratio again, debt would have to be reduced
by about $6 trillion.

In the meantime, we may well be looking at a
vicious cycle of defaults that in turn would produce credit tightening
and still more economic weakness—compounding the caution among
borrowers, lenders and public financial authorities.

The most
obvious source of distress right now is lack of payroll growth, and it's
likely to get worse. Real unemployment today is well above the headline
number of 9.5%. That number held steady only because 1,115,000 people
gave up hope of finding work and left the labor force in the last three
months. Otherwise the headline unemployment rate would have been around

Now there are at least 14.5 million Americans still
searching for work: 1.4 million of them have been jobless for more than
99 weeks, 6.5 million have been jobless for over 27 weeks. This is a
stunning reflection of the longer-term unemployment we are coping with.

unemployment numbers are worse than reported. Last year the Labor
Department admitted it over-counted the number of jobs by 1.4 million.
Why? Because they used a computer program that tries to extrapolate how
many new companies are being created during each month and then
estimates the number of jobs these firms should be creating. They were

Since April, the Labor Department has counted 550,000
nonexistent jobs under this so-called birth/death series. Without these
phantom jobs, the economy this year created virtually no jobs—certainly
not the 600,000 the administration has been touting.

The Obama
administration projects the unemployment rate will drop to 8.7% by the
end of next year and 6.8% by 2013. That is totally unrealistic. It means
we would have to add nearly 300,000 jobs a month over the next three
years. At the rate we're going, it will take anywhere from six to nine
years to climb out of this hole. The labor market may be improving, but
the pace is glacial.

If there is one great policy failure of this recession, it's that we
have not used the crisis to introduce structural reforms. For example,
we have a gross mismatch of available skills and demonstrable needs.
Businesses struggle to find the skills and talents that are needed to
compete in this new world. Millions drawing the dole to sit around
should be in training for the jobs of the future that require higher
educational skills.

Given that nearly eight in 10 new jobs,
according to the administration, will require work-force training or
higher education, it furthermore makes no sense that we have reversed
the traditional American policy of welcoming skilled immigrants and
integrating them into our economy. Because of a recrudescent nativism,
we send home thousands upon thousands of foreign students who have
gotten masters and doctoral degrees in the hard sciences at American
universities. These are people who create jobs, not displace them. The
incorporation of immigrants used to be one of the core competencies of
our economy. It's time to return to that successful model.

education is another critical issue. As President Obama pointed out
last week in his speech at the University of Texas, we have fallen from
first to 12th in college graduation rates for young adults. The
unemployment rate for those who have never gone to college is almost
double what it is for those who have.

Education may be the key
economic issue of our time, Mr. Obama said in his speech, for "countries
that out-educate us today . . . will out-compete us tomorrow." To
improve our performance will involve massive increases in scholarship
support for higher education, and an increase in H-1B visas for foreign
students who get M.A.s and Ph.D.s in the hard sciences.

But if
the economic scene these days is daunting, the political scene is
downright depressing. We have a paralyzed system. Neither the Democrats
nor the Republicans seem able to find common ground to address what is
clearly going to be an ongoing employment crisis. Finding that common
ground is a job opportunity for real leaders.

h/t Mark Mansfield


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Wed, 08/25/2010 - 16:56 | 544238 megatoxic
megatoxic's picture


Oy, vey!  Attack Iran, already, Mr. President! 

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:29 | 544339 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

No, no, no, we need a new cold-war, that's all.

The real translation: Mid-term elections are coming!

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:25 | 544585 Bananamerican
Bananamerican's picture

in a sellout globalist nutshell...

"...will involve massive H-1B visas"

to hell with you Mortimer 

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 21:15 | 544798 jeff montanye
jeff montanye's picture

you misquote him intentionally.  he has a point and a good one.  regarding the oy vey above, mort is not good on the zionist entity but he had the sense to leave it out of this essay.  would we rather have phd immigrants or illiterate ones?  we're certainly getting the latter.  

he's a member of the ruling class, no question, and his u.s. news and world report suffers from the myriad faults of most of the msm.  but his critique above is pretty accurate as far as it goes.  education is hardly the only answer to the weak median wage growth of the last forty years but it wouldn't hurt to improve it.  his larger point that the worst failure of the pathetic current administration is not to institute structural reforms is unassailable.   

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:00 | 544252 Timmay
Timmay's picture

Cut off Wall Street credit lines, stop Gov spending, Cut Corp. and Individual taxes for a defined period of time, raise tariffs on all imported goods, Raise interest rates for a defined period of time, raise middle finger to China. Boom! Recovery.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 21:37 | 544843 Breaker
Breaker's picture

" "if the economic scene these days is daunting, the political scene is downright depressing. We have a paralyzed system."

This quote, from the article, actually highlights the problem. Everyone assumes that a paralyzed system is bad. That we need a leader who can unite left and right and "get things done." We saw what happened in the 12 months after Obama and the Democrats got complete control of the government. No paralysis at all. And what a disaster.

As you say, we need to cut gvt. spending dramatically. We're not going to get that regardless. But we might get a paralyzed government, which may be the best we can hope for. A group of paralyzed man have a harder time mugging you than does a healthy mob.

The author wants a healthy mob in congress and the white house. He is sincere, I think. But shares the delusion of the ruling class that the government is capable of doing much good if the parties would just hold hands and sing Kumbaya. The idea of a united congress terrifies me.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:02 | 544254 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

He is clearly rascist republican.

When is his next clan meeting?

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 21:11 | 544793 fxrxexexdxoxmx
fxrxexexdxoxmx's picture

Racism is the tool and heart of Democrats. Without racism how in the hell did this Obama idiot get into any position of authority? Obama is dimmer and less intelligent than fucking Bush.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 21:57 | 544880 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

It was sarcasm.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 00:54 | 545135 Careless Whisper
Careless Whisper's picture

he's a bilderberger. if you don't know what that is, it will be worth your while to educate yourself on who really runs our economy.

If there is one great policy failure of this recession, it's that we have not used the crisis to introduce structural reforms.

the only structural reform we need is to nationalize the private banking cartel known as the federal reserve, which is a privately owned bank beholden to the international banksters.

mister zuckerman, please peddle your bilderberg crap somewhere else.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:01 | 544255 Ricky Bobby
Ricky Bobby's picture

We don't need no stinkin Middle Class. We have 300,000,000 Chinese slaves. If they ask for a raise then substitue with 300,000,000 Indian slaves.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:25 | 544330 Jason T
Jason T's picture

American British Imperialism bitchez

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 18:02 | 544411 John Self
John Self's picture

Vietnam.  That's where the sweatshops go when the Chinese ask gets too high.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:06 | 544268 anony
anony's picture

"We have a paralyzed system".

Duh....You can't govern a nation of millions of square miles, multi-cultural, multi-racial, multi-religious, multi-everything people who don't much give a merde about one another.  

When in hell has it ever been done, but disastrously?? 

Bust the damned thing up into manageable pieces. 30-40 regions ought to do it.  The African/European model is light years ahead of us. Many nations on one continent.

No, it's not the most efficient, but if the people in France want to burn the cars and strike the Metro, they can do it in five minutes of organization.

Try that here.

We can take what we've learned reverse the Global Order New Order of the Bushies, Clintonites, and other power mad narcissists who can't govern their own personal behavior, let alone a nation growing to 400,000,000 diversified people.

Break the fucking country up or live with paralysis, global corruption, and chaos.


Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:09 | 544280 megatoxic
megatoxic's picture

I like this idea.

Personally, I no longer give a fuck what happens to Californians, New Yawkers, and coastal elites in general.  I'm happy to trade with them, but I'd really rather not have them writing my laws for me, telling me how to live my life, etc.


Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:46 | 544374 Mad Max
Mad Max's picture

You like it - I LOVE IT.  But how could we find roughly 30-40 administrative regions within our 50 states?  ???  Anyone?  Anyone?

Hey, I've got an idea.  FEDERALISM.  That thing that we had until FDR obliterated the Constitution.  50 states might be a bit much - we'll let the Dakotas merge (if they want) , ditto for true New England, maybe Oregon and Washington will want to cozy up, who knows.

I am in 100% agreement about not caring a fuck about NY and Kalifornia.  I feel more kinship with Ontario, Canada generally, and frankly even the UK than I do with those states.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 18:47 | 544428 Rick Masters
Rick Masters's picture

I second that. And I'm from the Northeast. Check out the number of federal dollars received and paid in between the states on the coasts and the the so-called freshwater states. You would be fucked. Sure you got the grains; we got the ports. Tariffs bitchez! I'm being very facetious and I apologize; I really don't think we should seperate.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 21:38 | 544848 Mad Max
Mad Max's picture

Most states would do just fine on their own, EXCEPT the New York-Virginia corridor of government and thievery.  The midwest can happily export its products in any other direction, or just establish a trade route by force.  It's not as if any large number of citizen-soldiers arise from the native population of the government corridor.  If you want to talk about force, it would be the SE and Texas that people would have to fear.

But, anyway, this is all just internet wanking talk...

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:22 | 544321 Incubus
Incubus's picture

ok, but give me time to gtfo of glennbeckistan before you break the damn thing up

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:45 | 544375 Mad Max
Mad Max's picture

Your own damn fault for moving there in the first place!  (Wherever it may be.)

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 20:26 | 544713 megatoxic
megatoxic's picture

Gladly.  I'd really prefer not to have to share whatever ends up being my parcel of the country with fucktards like you.

You'll do better Federal Reservistan, anyway.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 21:35 | 544792 Incubus
Incubus's picture

yeah... call me crazy, but 'freedom' is subjective.


I'd rather do my years and have infrastructure than live out in the middle of nowhere...with my land and...livestock?

Who cares if it's all a sham, they reset things and after a while, we'll get to pretend everything's rosey again. I'll get old, and everyone will be pretending still, to hell with future generations if the ponzi unravels on them, so what: they face a couple of years/decades of tough times until there's a new system to draw the labor & wealth from the masses.


It's sisyphean in the grand scheme of things, but I'm not entertaining any illusions of making a better future for people who won't give a damn about me.

what... bust my ass improving society, so my great great grand-kids can look at photos of me, all teary-eyed?  Puh-leeze.

Take what you can out of it, screw those that didn't make it out... so sorry, better luck next time, pals.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 22:03 | 544891 Dr Emilio Lizardo
Dr Emilio Lizardo's picture

Ever thought of running for office?  You'd fit right in.

I can't determine whether you're a symptom or part of the disease that is eating this country. 

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 08:13 | 545376 grunion
grunion's picture

Your spiritual house is not in order. Wherever you go, you will be miserable until you make some fundamental changes. Do that and be pleasantly surprised...

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 22:18 | 544919 Breaker
Breaker's picture

"Bust the damned thing up into manageable pieces. 30-40 regions ought to do it."

Actually, America started as a federal republic. The states were a lot as you describe in your post. The federal government was small and weak. Obviously, the configuration was unstable over time in the face of an ever increasing and ever more powerful federal government.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 23:10 | 544991 Milestones
Milestones's picture

why not consider going back to the scheme of city-states of ancient Greece.? Maybe some of you might have picked this up from Naked Capitalism a couple of days ago. That was my first thought as well as the almost certain coming genicide due to demographics.  Milestones


Beyond City Limits Parag Khanna, Foreign Policy (hat tip reader John D). Today’s must read

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:07 | 544276 pyite
pyite's picture

This is not nearly as direct an attack on Obama as his last article.  Clearly, both major parties need to act like adults/leaders and work to get rid of the unpayable debt ASAP.

What depresses me is that the partisan divide gets worse and worse.  If a problem is "bipartisan," nothing will happen until it is too late.

The government needs to make personal bankruptcy easier, and should put derivatives at the end of the line when it comes to resolution of bankrupt corporations.  In other words - embrace the deflation and get it over with already.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:14 | 544301 VK
VK's picture

But there is bipartisanship between the DemocRATS and RepubliCONS, to screw over America! That's what you're dear leaders are for. It ain't about left or right, it's about corporate power. And what the corporations want, they get. Without regard for the rule of law or justice. This is what fascism is, both parties are clearly working together to screw America over. Just grab some KY Jelly America, you're going to need it.

Serf's up!!

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:55 | 544402 rocker
rocker's picture

Excellent VK. Could not have been said any better by anybody. The party of yes we can screwed by the just say no.

Bottom line is what the corporations want. They are the real power. What scares me is that now our Supreme Court has

decided that America is no longer for or by the people.

Corporations will now control the media, which the mostly do already, with the power of any amount of money than need to control the sheepies minds.

What's really scary is that foreign corporations or entities, such as the Saudi Oil interest, will be financing presidential

campaigns too.  We are now a real third world nation without hope or a voice.

But hey, Godman Shafts is doing well.  We paid for Lord Blankfeins 100 million dollar bonus.  Go Bankers.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 22:34 | 544940 Mad Mad Woman
Mad Mad Woman's picture

Rocker rocks!  You and VK are right on the money.  We're fucked.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 08:24 | 545387 grunion
grunion's picture

Corporate personage made man of machine and wants to rule. End the privilige. End corporate personage.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:24 | 544329 New_Meat
New_Meat's picture


"What depresses me is that the partisan divide gets worse and worse."

I don't get it.  The republicans have minorities in both houses.  There is no divide-dems can do anything they want to do.

So don't be depressed at the divide, it doesn't exits.

- Ned

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 20:01 | 544652 RockyRacoon
RockyRacoon's picture

Thassafact.  And we wonder why politicians won't ever give a straight answer:  Obama's "promise" of that 8% unemployment rate was a big mistake!  It gets quoted right back to him every 5 minutes of the day.  If he had been wishy-washy and not given a hard number we would have to fall back on some other "fact" or "promise" to ream him about.  No wonder politicians never answer questions!

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 08:26 | 545390 grunion
grunion's picture

It is hard for him to answer a question with so many lies to remember.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 08:26 | 545391 grunion
grunion's picture

It is hard for him to answer a question with so many lies to remember.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:09 | 544279 trav7777
trav7777's picture

Mort, you and your cousins need to go strangle some other nation

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:10 | 544286 cossack55
cossack55's picture

...job opportunity for real leaders."   All real leaders have long since been outsourced or otherwise fled this sinking piece of shit.

I am too old to lead and everyone I know doesn't need a leader anyway.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:12 | 544294 sharonsj
sharonsj's picture

What do you expect?  You didn't need a college degree to work in a manufacturing facility or be a file clerk.  But those jobs are gone and aren't coming back.  So you want those high school grads (and dropouts) to go back to school?  They can't afford it.  College fees are skyrocketing and people can't take on any more debt.


Instead of bailing out the banksters, the government should have bailed out the average citizen.  Instead of making Halliburton richer with two wars, we should use the money to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure with all those idle construction workers.  There's a lot that could be done, but I doubt the corporate clowns in Congress will do it.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:30 | 544343 Dr Emilio Lizardo
Dr Emilio Lizardo's picture

How about NOT bailing out anyone...failure used to be an option, and a damn fine lesson in life

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 18:06 | 544416 John Self
John Self's picture

Yes, in fact, the whole reason that college costs are skyrocketing is because the government is involved in the college funding process.  You can see it most clearly now in the for-profit colleges that are under the microscope these days, but it's the same scam in "real" colleges too.  Get the government out and let the market determine the value of college education.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:04 | 544541 Votewithabullet
Votewithabullet's picture

 Ya cant get thar from hare.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 21:18 | 544804 uraniuman
uraniuman's picture

Excellent plan -- Gridlock will help us all conserve on the KYjelly.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 23:18 | 545001 Milestones
Milestones's picture

Why not make job retraining a s part and parcel of unemployment pay. Training could take place in existing businesses locations as potential free trainees to learn the new skills needed.Everyone gains: The unemployed get some training and the busineeman gets leads on new potential employee's when help is needed.    Milestones

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 10:14 | 545643 MilleniumJane
MilleniumJane's picture

@sharonsj:  Amen and hallelujah.  I would love to finish my degree, but I am not willing to end up $100,000 in the hole.  I have a family to provide for.


Short of winning the state lottery, I see no way of returning to school in the near future. 


The higher education system is a great balloon ready to burst.  The higher tuition rates are scandulous.  If the government was serious about making sure our citizens were receiving the best education in the world, they could have taken measures to stop this bullshit a long time ago.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 10:15 | 545646 MilleniumJane
MilleniumJane's picture

@sharonsj:  Amen and hallelujah.  I would love to finish my degree, but I am not willing to end up $100,000 in the hole.  I have a family to provide for.


Short of winning the state lottery, I see no way of returning to school in the near future. 


The higher education system is a great balloon ready to burst.  The higher tuition rates are scandulous.  If the government was serious about making sure our citizens were receiving the best education in the world, they could have taken measures to stop this bullshit a long time ago.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 10:17 | 545649 MilleniumJane
MilleniumJane's picture

Apologies to all for the double post.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 16:22 | 546608 KevinB
KevinB's picture

Not that I disagree with your comment, but just to add on:

First, going back to college is not only financially not on, it's not academically not on either. Today's high school kid is, for the most part, tragically unequipped to study maths or science or medicine; a significant portion can't read past a grade 6 level, let alone do calculus or trig. So what are they going to study? Anthropology? Literature? or (shudder) economics?

The only hope for North America to get back anything close to its former standard of living is a complete shake up of the educational establishment, from Grade 1 upwards. Crush the teachers unions, disband the NEA (that's the National Education Association, not the Nat'l Endowment for the Arts, though I wouldn't mind trashing that either), reintroduce such sticks as punishment, expulsion, keeping kids back, and load on incentives - scholarships, prizes, recognition, privileges, etc. - for kids who do well. It will take 20 years, but it's the only hope we've got.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:15 | 544302 Dr Emilio Lizardo
Dr Emilio Lizardo's picture

"Education may be the key economic issue of our time"


Amen. We're being ruled by a bunch of highly educated statist fools.

(intelligence + knowledge) != wisdom

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 08:28 | 545396 grunion
grunion's picture

I guess experience is no longer applicable?

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 08:29 | 545397 grunion
grunion's picture

I guess experience is no longer applicable?

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 08:33 | 545399 grunion
grunion's picture

Sorry x2 post

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:18 | 544313 ranrun
ranrun's picture

what kinda roob thought stimulus was going to work?

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 20:02 | 544656 anony
anony's picture

It worked just as we wanted Paulson and Geithner to make it work.  For us.


---Lord Blankfein, Goldman Sucks

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:20 | 544314 redpill
redpill's picture

He sounded clearheaded until he advocated further subsidizing college tuitions.  They are too expensive already, throwing more money at them just gives schools incentive to keep jacking them up every year.  Worse yet are those who myopically advocate for vast new student loan programs, in which not only are colleges given incentive to jack up tuitions, but the cost of them is born by the least able to pay; the fresh graduates (who currently have no prayer of finding a job).  Sure you can defer the payments, but you have to make them some day.  The last thing we want is to start new grads in their professional life a hundred grand in the hole when taxes and the cost of living will only be increasing.

This trend severely limits the capability of young professionals to save money for later in life, and it is most critical that they start saving early so their savings and investments have time to grow.  Instead they'll wind up pissing that money away on student loan interest because tuitions have been inflated out of control by over-subsidizing.  Great.  Then they'll have inadequate savings for their own retirement or to help pay for their own kids' college education, so their kids have to take out huge student loans too, and the cycle continues.

These days kids should do their first two years of college online, and make colleges and universities price their tuitions realistically by cutting off the nearly unlimited stream of student loan funding that they benefit from but that the kids have to pay back.


Wed, 08/25/2010 - 18:23 | 544443 Cathartes Aura
Cathartes Aura's picture

diploma mills are just like everything else in this phony factory farm - the individual is a pawn to debt creation, and that debt keeps the feet running the hamster wheel until death.

rinse. repeat.

I have a letter telling me that my student loans must be paid else my social security will be withheld. . .

genuine hearty laughter when that arrived. . . it's framed on my wall now, relevant threats highlighter-yellow'd, as a reminder of the world I live in.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:11 | 544542 RaymondKHessel
RaymondKHessel's picture

Someone I know just passed who had oh $106,000 in federal student loans. Keyword: HAD, Poof those are gone.

Oh yeah, and 90% of their income was under the table... SS can kiss my ass.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:15 | 544562 Votewithabullet
Votewithabullet's picture

..yes the world cocksuckers made borrowing money with no intention to FUCKING PAY BACK WHAT YOU OWE. Frame that pussy.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:50 | 544627 Gwynplaine (not verified)
Gwynplaine's picture

Exactly right redpill.  The push for more college is just like the push for home ownership; it's not for everyone, and it will not bring back the American dream.  Usually, it just adds debt.  

We have a candidate running for county executive here that wants to free college/trade school for all residents.  It must be a Democratic talking point for the midterms.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:18 | 544316 Heroic Couplet
Heroic Couplet's picture

Twitmonkey Alan Greenspan and Bush's dimwit US Labor Secretary Elaine Chao, Mitch McConnell's wife, both chirped "health sciences" as the only source of jobs left in the US. Greenspan is the mouthpiece for the private bank cartel. How many former middle class members missed that speech? I was looking at another web site, didn't make a screen capture, but Greenspan was quoted as saying "it's going to be devastating to the middle class."  Next time I looked, that particular quote was gone.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 10:20 | 545660 MilleniumJane
MilleniumJane's picture

Wiping rich old peoples' asses is now the wave of the future in America.  This is truly "The End of American Optimism." 

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:19 | 544318 jag
jag's picture

The economic distortions and mal incentives so layered into our system were not Obama's fault. These imbalances would take time to normalize no matter who was president.

However, Obama's drive to shove "health care" down the throats of a populace preoccupied with vastly more important concerns, his "stimulus" which merely threw monies to teachers and other PUBLIC workers and his agenda to increase regulations of all sorts have done nothing but discourage business.

Obama could be a hero. Freeze all government programs. Tell government workers their salaries are going to be frozen, then reduced 1% a year until enough federal workers begin to leave the public sector for the private sector at rates comparable to private sector job mobility. Federal pay is distorted relative to the private sector and, by creating a price based solution to uncover the equilibrium pay, Obama would show he's serious about reducing public sector size and he understands that the public sector needs to sacrifice in order to help the private sector recover.

But he won't. Public employment has attained a superior status relative to the private sector and he (and many other politicians of BOTH parties) are served by being able to lard them up with sinicures for "friends" and other politically sympathetic people. Until someone comes along that has the guts to rein in the beast that the public sector has become, government will continue to grow and drain the private sector of any and all vigor.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:42 | 544362 Yardfarmer
Yardfarmer's picture

right on jag, average government employee wages are in the neighborhood of $160,000 per annum compared to private sector wages of less than half that. government, ill health care, and education consume vast and unproductive amounts of expenditures, thrive on debt creation and increasingly comprise the only continuing viable avenues of employment committed to a vastly unsustainable wasteland of sell perpetuating serfdom. Combined with the grotesquely inflated share of national wealth commandeered by the infernally complex machinations of the financial institutions, only a massive and destructive economic cleansing from top to bottom can purge the morbid and stagnant national malaise which is strangling our economic life.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 00:43 | 545129 Montgomery Burns
Montgomery Burns's picture

All the stats I can find put average govt salary at closer to 70k so you're only off by $90k or so. Also within 1 or 2 % of private sector wages for comparable work.  The basic point of the post is valid in my view so no need for gross exageration.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:20 | 544320 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture

countries that out-educate us today . . . will out-compete us tomorrow


In Europe, going to the University is FREE, like every education you can imagine. Only MBA's cost money (about 15000 euro a year).


We have a overeducated workforce!

We can't fill the lower production workplaces. And even for a low administor job, they at least ask a Bachelor and if possible a university degree.

For every management job, you'll better be able to talk 5 languages, have like 200 year of experience and if possible are willing to do the job for free.

And to be honest, we can't all be managers.

We need a new industrial age thanks to technical innovations... SURE! But that will take 20 to 30 years so you can store that idea also.

We need to protect our markets, we need to be more nationalists. Don't import what you produce yourself.

If we don't we can't get out of this crisis.

But we can form coalitions, coaltions with countries that produce products in the same economic situations as America, Canada, Europe. Local wages should we the leading indicator and give us fair competion.

Otherwise, whatever we do, whatever we invent, whatever we produce, the lower wage countries will just copy it.


Wed, 08/25/2010 - 20:45 | 544757 nufio
nufio's picture

Ive posted this in another forum.. but i think this table of stats speaks somethign about society and the entitlement generation in america..

Total Bachelors degress conferred : 1,524,092

Business : 327,531
Education : 105,641
Engineering : 67,092
Computer and information sciences : 42,170
English language and literature/letters : 55,122
Health professions and related clinical sciences: 101,810
Psychology : 90,039
Social sciences and history : 164,183
Visual and performing arts : 85,186

Combining engineering and computer science we have 100k graduates a year.

When you say over educated you mean mostly in degrees such as visual and performing arts, social sciences, history and psychology.. There is definitly oversupply in a lot of majors. Most students dont pick a lot of productive majors because they cant handle math.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:23 | 544328 SnarkAttack
SnarkAttack's picture

Stop allowing American labor to have the same price as exploited foreign labor (unsafe conditions, pollution, child, etc) and companies will have to employ people here again.  Corporate profits will decline, but the American Standard of Living will be higher.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:36 | 544349 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

In other news, there are waaaaay too many political tools at ZH. Zuckerman's opinion about Obama is no more relevant than any professional wrestling storyline. Yet, people not only read it, they waste effort talking about its details, not noticing they are trapped in a facade designed to take them nowhere.

Like I said, tools.

I'll try to avoid the political threads here from now on, lest it spoil the remainder of the site.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:46 | 544381 chinaguy
chinaguy's picture

agreed, not dems vs. reps. more like serfs vs. plutocrats.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:39 | 544355 chinaguy
chinaguy's picture

rant - on

We send home thousands upon thousands of foreign students who have gotten masters and doctoral degrees in the hard sciences at American universities

For fuck sakes - if you earn a PhD or Masters degree in a field we need here - we should hand you a green card on the day you graduate.

There is ZERO reason to take an academic slot away from a local & give it to someone who will take the skill set offshore to compete against us.

& while we are at it....stop automatically granting citizenship to illegal infants only because their mothers swam across river to birth them on USA soil - 8% of total births in the USA this year...Oh yeah, I pandering

- rant off


Wed, 08/25/2010 - 18:19 | 544449 Athena
Athena's picture

Why would an American want to earn a degree in the sciences and subsequently become a slave to the business majors?

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 18:49 | 544508 chinaguy
chinaguy's picture

Right, go & get yourself a "business degree" & see what kind of job that lands you - LOL

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:03 | 544540 Athena
Athena's picture

Me, my cohorts, and fellow slaves have the science degrees, and the people in charge have degrees in management.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 00:20 | 545099 You Cant Handle...
You Cant Handle the Truth's picture

Right, but don't those managers provide so much value, updating their Microsoft Project files, showing up at meetings unprepared, and politically jousting with other teams to duplicate effort and alienate talent?

But ... but
... they're PMP certified!! Of course they should make more money than people who actually do the work.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:29 | 544593 Suisse
Suisse's picture

Most immigration is chain migration of people who have no education whatsoever. Look at any educational projection of the U.S., it is expected to lower real per capita GDP.

Last I looked engineers can't get jobs, computer science people can't get jobs. There is no labor shortage.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 20:40 | 544746 nufio
nufio's picture

do you have any statistics or links for that?

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:45 | 544368 Gully Foyle
Gully Foyle's picture

I'm confused. Most of the time the majority of posters justly state that politicians are nothing but puppets and corporations pull the strings.

But, today I'm reading people actually blame Obama for policy, and a few observant souls blame both parties.

Make up your fucking minds! Do politicians wield power and are accountable or are corporations manipulating them, writing legislation and skewing the discourse with donations?

You can't goddamned well blame Obama for health care when it is the Insurance Industry and Big Pharma planning this to squeeze money from financially drained populace.

Obviously you can blame Greenspan, fucker was in charge so long the office stunk of old man. Matter of fact Greenspan is the reason the economy still stinks like old man, old man  fucking Andrea Mitchell!

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:07 | 544547 faustian bargain
faustian bargain's picture

Not sure what you're ranting about. I can blame both politicians AND financial oligarchs. They're both participating in the same takes two to tango.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 23:33 | 545025 Milestones
Milestones's picture

Ah yes, takes two to Tango. If you've ever been to BsAs the tango partners must dance a long time together to make this difficult dance work. Moral: Change at least one of the partners frequently via the ballot box.    Milestones

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:47 | 544384 Dreamwalker420
Dreamwalker420's picture

Increases of scholarship support will not solve the unemployment problems caused by unskilled labor competing against foreign nationals with advanced degrees.

Higher education has increasingly been "sold" to Americans and left them largely in debt for pieces of paper that qualify them to barely work above minmum wage.  Student loan debts are guaranteed by the government, a free money train for the banking industry.

Remove the economic barrier to "public education" ... make it public.  The higher education system has largely failed as indicated by Harvard's Endowment fund amassing financial losses as morons gamble in the markets with the donor money.

My own story:  My first year in college.  My father died two months before I was born.  My mom refused to sign my financial aid forms until a week before fall term started.  I had already been accepted to the University of Oregon.  When I got there, I quickly realized that the money I needed to borrow barely covered my expenses to provide an even playing field for me to compete with other students.  Under financial distress, I left college in the middle of my winter term.

After years of terrible jobs, I finally got the opportunity to return to school through the JOBS program (circa 1995-96).  I took a battery of tests, for which I was told that my end goal of becoming a lawyer was "outside the scope of their program objectives" and I would not be receiving any tuition assistance ... even for a community college.  I asked to lower my expectations to something like, computer programming ... can't change the form because that would be fraud.

I painfully re-habed my student loan debt working for minimum wage as a night auditor syphoning money from the welfare programs of food stamps, state medical plans, and housing assistance.  I returned to college and earned my Associate of Arts degree at a community college.  It allowed me to transfer back to the university as a junior.

Again, by winter term the financial burdens erroded my ability to maintain my grades.  I failed while working 60 hours a week to keep up.

It would be another four years before I would go back to school.  At the ripe ol' age of 30, my mom used her credit cards to pay off all my student debt so that I could return to college.  The cumulative GPA from my past experiences put me on academic probation.  I took great care to firgure out what I needed to earn in order to retain my "financial aid package" and stay in school.  Unfortunately, the calculations of the academic advisor were incorrect.  Using a calculator that rounded up, she came up with 2.00 ... which actually turned out to be a 1.98 ... and again I'm out of college.

College degree's don't guarantee apptitude.  In fact, an increasing number of graduates are unable to demonstrate the supposed skills that were acquired in the education process.  My academic advisor had a college degree ... and she misrepresented a critical mathimatical calculation ... next time, I guess I'll just focus on those easy A's while I'm distracted by 60 hour work weeks.

First, scrap public funding for private institutions.  The public funding encourages a hyperinflation of tuition and other costs because of the free money from the federal government.  It leaves the campus with billions in free money and mountains of debt for uneducated unskilled workers.

Second, make all pulic institutions a voucher based program. $X dollars per student as provided by the state, with no additional monetary assistance from the state (at any level).  People can find housing.  People can put food on their table ... crappy jobs will do that. By elimination of "tuition" barriers at public universities, the scholarships can then be applied to the core costs of survival for students attempting to add to their communities overall productive value.

Third, reinstate apptitude expectations.  If you give a fluency certificate for a foreign language ... they must be able to demonstrate these learned skills making them more employable for business industry.  A psychology student that cannot discuss the basics of human emotions is nothing more than a minimum wage drone producing interest payments for a financial oligarchy that thrives off the blood of the masses.

I don't want your pity ... I want the opportunity to be competitive and succeed.  I cannot do that in an environment where the value of dollars are destroyed daily so that the barriers to competition can not be overcome.

The cancer of the Federal Reserve System and the existence of Federal Reserve Notes are at the heart of most the ills that plague the instability in our community.

Gold in 1992 was $300-$350 per ounce ... now it is $1200 to $1250 = 400%

College tuition in 1992 was $2538 ... and now is $7532 = 300%

Gasoline in 1992 was under a dollar a gallon ... and now is over $3.00 a gallon = 300%

ZH talks about hyperinflation as though it hasn't already begun.  For those of us living on the other side of the tracks, my friend, hyperinflation is already starting.  I may not have a college degree, I certainly understand finance, management, political will, oligarchies, and survival.  My generation feels betrayed by a government that provides assistance to foreign nationals above the value of its own populations.

As an American citizen what have I inherited?

A fascist government that has mountains of debt.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:31 | 544599 Suisse
Suisse's picture

Two words for you: Community College

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:33 | 544601 megatoxic
megatoxic's picture

Great story.  Thanks for sharing it.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 20:16 | 544690 redbud
redbud's picture

Appreciate your thoughts. Well written and persuasive.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 08:48 | 545431 Screwball
Screwball's picture

A+ my friend.  Thanks for sharing and best of luck.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:47 | 544385 Comrade de Chaos
Comrade de Chaos's picture

Agreed. There is only one party. And it ain't your party.

Or Else

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:51 | 544394 Slartibartfast
Slartibartfast's picture

Here's an idea, Mort...get the freakin' money out of the political system! Drain the bog, already! Democrats or Republicans, it doesn't matter. They're both nothing but pimps for international/a-national corporations.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:55 | 544397 Spalding_Smailes
Spalding_Smailes's picture

Free-trade is the downfall of this great nation. Ahh yes "free trade" ...


What a bunch of fucking crap.To the benifit of "big business" free trade,free trade.Why is it China can import every dam thing they want into our lands, killing small businesses.Why is this allowed, but when WE try to sell something into China, it gets hit with a 60% tariff.What a pile of dog shit...

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 17:55 | 544400 mynhair
mynhair's picture

Neither the Democrats nor the Republicans seem able to find common ground to address what is clearly going to be an ongoing employment crisis.


Like Democrats have a clue on what employment is?

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 18:09 | 544425 John Self
John Self's picture

Sure they do -- it's what you do to get your .gov or .edu email account.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 20:18 | 544694 redbud
redbud's picture

Hee hee. Good one!

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 18:19 | 544448 Treeplanter
Treeplanter's picture

Mort is pretty confused for a guy who wrote a speech for The Loser in Chief.  The Democrats have owned Congress for the last four years and the White House for the last two.  They nearly all voted for Bush's bailouts, TARP, and stupid spending programs, along with McCain and too many Republicans--who are now on the hot seat.  Four years of anti free enterprise policies, irresponsible government backed lending, and wild spending brought us here.  I'm optimistic because I see the totalitarian socialist takeover is being soundly rejected by Americans.  We may have hard times coming, but they will pass.  In the long run we will end crony capitalism, enable a free market, sound money, impartial taxation and government ruled by the Constitution.  Optimistic as all hell.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:10 | 544555 faustian bargain
faustian bargain's picture

I will start being optimistic only after those things have happened.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 09:43 | 545577 Treeplanter
Treeplanter's picture

Good point.  I may have been drinking too much Earl Grey.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 09:43 | 545578 OldTrooper
OldTrooper's picture

Optimistic as all hell.

Sounds like a realistic evaluation to me.  The vision is nice, but... optimistic as all hell.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 18:08 | 544419 bob resurrected
bob resurrected's picture

the average adult in the U.S. reads between the 8th and 9th grade reading levels

1 in 5 adults read at or below the 5th grade level

1 in 5 adults unemployed

US ranks 18 out of 36 in education

effects of immigration economic net positive

type of immigrant can be controlled

US ranks 178 out of 239 in population density

10-year-old Perry Chen, prodigy in the making

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 13:02 | 546054 bob resurrected
bob resurrected's picture

Today's job losses are concentrated among workers under 30 who are less well-educated

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 18:31 | 544469 francismarion
francismarion's picture

Let's keep importing poverty from the south and our factories to Asia and allowing everyone else to play 'what's mine is mine and what's yours is mine'.  That will solve everything.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:55 | 544636 Bananamerican
Bananamerican's picture

the "great leveling" renders the world into a giant salt mine, and i do believe thats been the general Plan...Humanity & environs, a Pigman's planetary plaything....It won't work out that way of least not in this iteration of it

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 18:46 | 544486 bugs_
bugs_'s picture

On the contrary - they do have common ground.

One thing they will not consider is closing the border and ending the flood of cheap labor(illegal, expired H1B, H1B, F1, F2, J1, "refugee", etc etc etc)

See?  Democrats and Republicans can get together!

And both have never seen a "free trade" agreement they didn't like!


Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:13 | 544563 ElvisDog
ElvisDog's picture

To improve our performance will involve massive increases in scholarship support for higher education

What a bunch of baloney. Simply sending more kids to college alone does nothing to improve our competitiveness. These estimates are just out of my head, but I would guess that half the people who go to college don't do it to learn or prepare themselves for work. They do it to party, enjoy life, and avoid work - it is essentially daycare for young adults. It seems to me that there is a great mismatch between the types of jobs that will be available in the U.S. in the future and the types of degrees that people are graduating with.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:42 | 544614 DosZap
DosZap's picture

Well, back to Globalization.

First it was the Mfg facilities, steel companies, heavy industry,and blue collar jobs.

That was 30-35yrs ago.

Now,(and for the last 20yrs), every time I speak to my ISP provider, or wireless provider(be it networking, or issue's with cell phones), I wind up in India.

Corporations, such as Dell, and Microsoft, and AT&T etc, have outsourced these jobs BACK  to India,or Pakistan.

They do a great job,if you can understand them.

While we were graduating very few Engineeers, India was packing our colleges, and Universities with students, getting degrees.( it was like 80/20 the ratios).

Dr's, Nursing, Clinicians,Peds, etc,etc......all Foreign willing to work hard, flocked here by the hundreds of thousands.......

For a period of time these people stuck around, and assimilated into the US society.Then they went home with their newly earned degrees,professions, and started working in their home  countries.

Then, the Corporations, figured out how to kill two birds with one stone.

Why hire them, and put them in offices in the US, when they could relocate them back home, and cut their pay by 35-40%, and still retain them.

And, at the same time, these same people we educated, were then working at home, and their std of living was just as good, or better there, than here.

Making 35-40% less.

Now to the reason(in my opinion), for the disparity of education ratios, degrees.

Let's look at the NEA,(Unions) and the Universities (Tenured Profs).........our students have not been taught life skills,and technical skills,they have been brainwashed by Left Wing Marxist Professors,and taught Political Correctness........

Educational skills, degrees be damned.

Poisoned, and we wonder why we're where we're here?.




Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:53 | 544630 Nikki
Nikki's picture

Mort, you are a schmuck and wasted my time with your kvetching.

You can make college free and everyone will still not qualify or graduate. Not everyone in this country is academically inclined. There used to be opportunity for those not intellectually gifted that provided entré into the lower and middle classes. It was called a manufacturing job. The jobs are gone. It's over for them. The skilled trades and professions not easily outsourced are all declining rapidly. H1b makes it faster... Thanks microsoft and wipro... Bottom end is full of illegals. I digress.

Mort, you want to be courageous and write something interesting ?. Have a Bill Cosby moment. As Bill looked into his community and spoke up against illiteracy, illegitimacy and crime, what say you ?. Madoff made off with your fortune. Greenspan, Bernanke, Rubin, Frank, Summers, Bair, Shapiro, Orzag, Blankfein, Weil, Rahm etc... have fucker us all, as have your cousins Trichet, Sarkozy, Soros in Europe. Why don't you expose the rampant criminality in your community ?.

Solutions.. Other posters and even Andy Grove acknowledge the only solution left. Do what Brazil, China, Japan and Korea do. Build it here if it is possible (coffee isn't). Tax the shit out of any import manufacturable here. Free trade isn't free for us here...

Other solution. End imperialism. Bring all troops back home per the framers wishes.

Strip finacial terrorists of every asset and jail them for the treason they have commited.

Let the Palestians have a homeland. Pay them reparations.

Fuck all you Zionist, neo con, kosher nostra mafia criminals. You bring ruin everwhere you bring your usury.

Fuck your Hollywood violence swill you push out to the idiot boxes.

One other thing Mort, fuck you.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 23:43 | 545044 Milestones
Milestones's picture

Thank you for the great laugh. Made my evening!!  Milestones

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 08:09 | 545367 Nikki
Nikki's picture

I'm glad you found the humor in the sarcasm and the rant.

Your endorsement was cancelled by the junker though... Some lazy twat who couldn't waste their time to debate any of the content.... Or someone who thinks Arabs don't have rights and Bill Cosby wasn't courageous. Lol..

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 19:57 | 544637 michigan independant
michigan independant's picture

is causing many Americans to distance themselves from the long-held assumption that their children will have it better than they.

I knew this in 1972 after study. During the 68 recession I had seen children going to school hungry. I watched our city’s burn. I asked my father why?

He only said to like people until they give a reason not to.

There seems to be a structural change in the American economy. The relationship of household debt to income has proven unsustainable.

This is where he needs to be unplugged. Congressional testimony in 2005 asserted this fact on housing alone. We never had a chance even when the demigod

Reagan tamed the so called threat. I still remember his acerbic whit of removing the solar panels off the White house.

 The incorporation of immigrants used to be one of the core competencies of our economy. It's time to return to that successful model.

My Grandfather immigrated into Canada since  Europeans were profiled as undesirables. The Coal mines killed him from black lung later in life, but since a Canadian could immigrate he went there first. Later his Sons had to go Europe to Stop Hitler. My Grandmother lost her three sisters in Amsterdam from the war.

 Finding that common ground is a job opportunity for real leaders.

 My Wifes ancestors walked the trail of tears. Her Mothers tells the oral tradition to her grand and great grand Children since we are still blessed with her life under my household.

We have a very complex history as all do. And if you feel any Government is the solution you better understand more than I see than words from others. I currently work Corporate with souls from all over the Planet for over 30 years and there is much to do and learn. Government never does that for you. My Children have no debt to date since a family bears the burden to each other. We never take but give. They take but never give is all I have ever seen. It is not about right or wrong but what they want you to think. May God have mercy on my household and yours.



Wed, 08/25/2010 - 20:10 | 544678 MsCreant
MsCreant's picture

There are 999 posts on the hyperinflation post. Who will be 1,000?

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 21:20 | 544695 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

If there is one great policy failure of this recession, it's that we have not used the crisis to introduce structural reforms.

Structural Reform Number 1

Get rid of Geithner and Summers





Wed, 08/25/2010 - 20:26 | 544710 Hdawg
Hdawg's picture

"Neither the Democrats nor the Republicans seem able to find common ground to address what is clearly going to be an ongoing employment crisis. Finding that common ground is a job opportunity for real leaders."

Sorry to state the fcking obvious but the American cattle are being prepared to accept 2012 President General Petraeus, the military dictator.

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 22:00 | 544888 cjbosk
cjbosk's picture

Is everyone on this thing a biotch dem.  Suck it up already sissy's (dems), Wall St. isn't the enimy...the libs are and village idiots (and 18 year olds) voted in the most articulate primate to ever read a teleprompter in my natural born life.  Open up Oblabla, here comes my koknballs...

As if Obama isn't bad enough, you have the other drunken monkeys driving the short bus.  Pelosi, Barney, Dodd...are you kidding me?!  Who voted for Obama?..., certainly not Wall St., I'd guess...let me middle class perhaps...  Hey middle class, you're eating your cooking... and you deserve all you're getting!  2013, the ultamate reversion to the mean!!!

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 22:27 | 544930 Mad Mad Woman
Mad Mad Woman's picture

Mort's a fucking whack job.  These rich assholes must be bored or something lately. Or is he just pissed off about the Newsweek deal?

Wed, 08/25/2010 - 23:18 | 545002 cocoablini
cocoablini's picture

What exactly is Obama supposed to do. We are in a hundred year deflationary depression that was constructed over the last 40 years of excessive Keynesian trial and error.
Geithner was forced upon him. Obama had to promote Bernanke because the whole system is so complicated and full of deliberate traps set by banks and the ruling elite classes.
If anyone wants real change, we will have to plunge into a huge deflationary credit bust and economy reset. Just think of all the assets values that people are counting on to live. Derivatives, homes, etfs, stocks, mutual funds. No one has any real wealth- it's a facade.
This is where the financial system placed us- we either die with them or save them with our hard work and labor. It took years of incompetence. phil Gramm, his dirtbag wife, Clinton, Bush 1,2, McCain and scores of other so-called public servants sold us down the river for the banking system.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 10:11 | 545632 OldTrooper
OldTrooper's picture

What exactly is Obama supposed to do.

What any President should do.  This is a short section of the Constitution.  I fail to see why anyone is confused about what the President is supposed to do.

Article 2


Section 1 (Last Paragraph)


..."I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of
President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve,
protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."


Section 2


The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United
States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual
Service of the United States; he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the
principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any subject
relating to the Duties of their respective Offices, and he shall have Power to
Grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in
Cases of Impeachment.


He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make
Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall
nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint
Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court,
and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein
otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress
may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think
proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of


The President shall have Power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during
the Recess of the Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the End
of their next Session.


Section 3


He shall from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the
Union, and recommend to their Consideration such Measures as he shall judge
necessary and expedient; he may, on extraordinary Occasions, convene both
Houses, or either of them, and in Case of Disagreement between them, with
Respect to the Time of Adjournment, he may adjourn them to such Time as he
shall think proper; he shall receive Ambassadors and other public Ministers; he
shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed, and shall Commission all
the Officers of the United States.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 00:09 | 545082 chindit13
chindit13's picture

Rock and a hard place, Mort.  More education?  For whom?  The average IQ in the US is 98.  There's a whole lot of people, therefore, with IQ's from 70-90.  Are you going to have them study fluid dynamics?  To what end, Mort?  Redirecting the better minds toward more socially useful studies might be a society-enhancing policy, if we want to go the patronizing route, but there isn't a college degree in everybody's future.

The US had it great for a long time because international cheap labor was not yet ready to become available.  The emergence of the 2.35 billion or so folks from China and India, not to mention 70 million Vietnamese and other EM's, changed the world.  As believers in free trade and with our eyes focused on the quarterly bottom line, it was inevitable that the jobs once available to the lesser intellects in US society would be moved forever to other climes.  There might be a few things worse than being born today in a developed country but cursed with a minimal amount of functioning cranial synapses, but they are only a matter of degree.  No chance means no chance.

The question then becomes, do we go all protectionist like South Korea, Japan etc. (trying to exploit the intent if not the letter of GATT or whatever the latest round might be), or accept that society is going to have to carry a lot more bodies for entire lives, creating make-work just to provide some sense of self-worth?

I do not know the answer to that.  There may not be one.  I don't even like to say it, but it is a reality we can no longer deny.  The easy answers, as noted in your article, do not solve all of the problems, though they would be a good start.  Easy is breaking up TBTF, prosecuting those whose greed, stupidity, deceit and malfeasance destroyed the system, pulling back from trying to be the world's (unwanted) policeman, and giving up trying to make everybody's American Dream a reality.  In other words, lowering expectations, and making the guilty responsible for their actions. More difficult is what to do with all of the people who are---for lack of a better way to say it---neither necessary nor able to carry their own weight in the world?  Accidents of birth.  It's a damn unfair Universe, and up to now we have been able to afford compassion.  Sadly, we may be near the end of that capacity.  Do we let some people fall into the abyss, or do we all cough up some of the benefits we gained largely through pulling some good genes from the ether and share the wealth? 

In no way am I advocating eugenics.  What I am saying is that the time has come when the society has a choice to make that will forever define what we are, humane or human.

It's decision time.  I would like to hear the debate.


Thu, 08/26/2010 - 10:54 | 545767 bob resurrected
bob resurrected's picture

Unlimited numbers of immigrants of the types that the US chooses? Keep automatic stabilizers and use a VAT tax to pay for them? To the degree the automatic stabilizers are not needed, pay down debt?

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 00:12 | 545086 You Cant Handle...
You Cant Handle the Truth's picture

"Because of a recrudescent nativism, we send home thousands upon thousands of foreign students who have gotten masters and doctoral degrees in the hard sciences at American universities. These are people who create jobs, not displace them."

To quote Buggs Bunny: What a maroon.

Zuckerman may have a few points, but as usual his goal is to fuck the American worker by driving down wages even more. Case in point: he's an idiot if he thinks it's a good idea to create even more competition for the already shat-upon workers of this country. Hey Mort, you guys already shipped all the jobs overseas; now you want to import workers to take the few skilled jobs we can't simply ship overseas? Go fuck yourself Mort.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 01:54 | 545176 sbenard
sbenard's picture

I remember when Mort Zuckerman endorsed Obama. He was crazy then. Why didn't he see this coming? Many of us did!

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 02:01 | 545181 Hillbillyfreak
Hillbillyfreak's picture

Mort, Mort, Mort, my dear Mort.  Its time for you to move out of the northeast corridor; move west... anywhere west of DC.  You need to stop hanging with the crowd you've been hanging with.  Get a job.  Get a real f ing job, if you can find one.  Drive yourself to work in the morning, drive yourself home at night.  Buy your food, cook your dinner.  Pay your bills.  Pay your taxes.  Mort, have you ever filled out your own tax return?  Mort, do you know what Americans think about politicians?  Do you know what Americans think about people who write "Neither the Democrats nor the Republicans seem able to find common ground to address what is clearly going to be an ongoing employment crisis. Finding that common ground is a job opportunity for real leaders."  Mort, has the thought ever crossed your mind that politicians are the problem?  That the ideas they have are not productive, responsible, or wise - ideas Republican, ideas Democrat, or ideas from the common ground.  What exactly does the common ground look like?  What are the ideas that ferment in the common ground?  By the way, how come there's always a problem to solve.  How long have we been doing this?  I'll estimate 230 years plus or minus.  Don't you think politicians have had enough opportunity to solve the problems of the world?  I suggest that the problems of the world would more quickly be solved if we closed Washington and told everyone to go home, thanks for participating.  Mort, real Americans live west of DC.  Real Americans make America work. Not politicians in DC.  Not bankers in New York.  Not media moguls.  Okay, guys who develop industrial parks in suburban Washington sort of help America work.  (I worked on one or two of your projects many moons ago.)  Get with the program Mort.  I'm optimistic, Mort.  I'm short and I'm optimistic that I'm about to make a lot of money.  It'll be mine til the government confiscates it, but it will be fun til they take it.   PS: Mort, when the politicians say they need to confiscate all the "money", at least what's left of it, to keep American going, will you be happy with that?  What say you when they freeze your accounts?  Will it be okay as long as that solution is birthed from the common ground you talk about? 


Thu, 08/26/2010 - 05:19 | 545278 Silver_Bullet
Silver_Bullet's picture

He is advocating the displacement of the last sectors that offer a middle class wage.  Bringing in hundreds of thousands of low wage foreigners to drive down the wages of skilled professionals is the final nail in the coffin of the middle class.  The middle class is now dead.  The only hope for anyone with skills is to get a piece of the loot as the system crashes and burns like 1990s Russia.  Anyone trying to earn an honest living is going to be destroyed and eaten alive by the System.

Thu, 08/26/2010 - 15:10 | 546392 Juan Tsunami
Juan Tsunami's picture

green shoots turned out to be green shits. Reserve note green that is..



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Herry12's picture

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