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Guest Post: What Austerity?

Tyler Durden's picture


Submitted by Bill Wilson, President of Americans for Limited Government.

What Austerity?

By mainstream media accounts, the presidential election in France and parliamentary elections in Greece on May 6 were overwhelming verdicts against “austerity” measures being implemented in Europe.

There is only one problem. It is a lie.

First off, austerity was never really tried. Not really.

In France for example, according to Eurostat, annual expenditures have actually increased from €1.095 trillion to €1.118 trillion in 2011. In fact spending has increased every single year for the past decade. The debt there increased too from €1.932 trillion €1.987 trillion last year, just as it did every year before.

Real “austere”. The French spent more, and they borrowed more.

The deficit in France did decrease by about €34 billion in 2011, but that was largely because of a €56.6 billion surge in tax revenues. Again, there were no spending cuts. Zero.

Yet incoming socialist president François Hollande claimed after his victory over Nicolas Sarkozy that he would bring an end to this mythical austerity: “We will bring back Europe on a track for jobs, growth and the future… We’re no longer doomed to austerity.”

This is just a willful, purposeful distortion. What the heck is he talking about? Certainly not France.

If not France, then where?

In Italy and Spain, which have been dependent on tens of billions of cash infusions from the European Central Bank (ECB) to refinance their debts, cuts are hardly anywhere to be found either. In Spain, spending was cut by just €11 billion in 2011, a mere 2.3 percent reduction. In Italy, spending actually increased by €4.3 billion.

Both countries borrowed an additional €117 billion last year alone, raising their combined debts to €1.939 trillion. So, no austerity there. Just debt slaves.

Hollande might have been referring to the budgets of debt-strapped Ireland, Greece, and Portugal that have depended on over €290 billion of refinance loans from the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

But even there, the cuts are rather miniscule. In Greece, spending was cut by just €6.3 billion from 2010 levels. In Portugal, just €4.8 billion. Ireland only trimmed €2.2 billion off its 2009 levels, discounting its massive bank recapitalization in 2010 that blew up its budget by €25.7 billion.

The real point is that none of them even came close to balancing their budgets, with over €47 billion of combined deficits for 2011. More debt slaves.

Yet that is not stopping pundits like New York Times columnist and economist Paul Krugman from claiming otherwise, who said recently, “All this austerity is actually self-defeating. We’re seeing countries slash spending and drive their economies into a ditch.”

What austerity? These countries are all debt addicts. They’re not addressing the root of the problem. So, what should they do? Just borrow more?

Where’s the growth?

Oh, contraire. Although all of this government largesse and excessive borrowing is supposed to be economic stimulus by Krugman’s account, these European economies are still stuck in a ditch. We tried the same thing here.

More than $3 trillion in fiscal and monetary stimulus since the financial crisis began — all to no avail. Well, some things did happen. We lost our AAA credit rating. And the debt is now larger than the entire economy.

But leaving that aside, based on analyses like Krugman’s, one might get the idea that the sovereign debt crisis in Europe was caused not by too much borrowing, but by not enough of it.

No, Krugman, Hollande, et al., this really is a debt crisis. The government’s demand for borrowing is so voracious that it far exceeds even the financial system’s capacity to lend. The crisis has reached such critical proportions these countries cannot find a way to grow their way out of it.

Hollande’s idea of “growth” is just more government spending and waste in a new wrapper — more education funding, more pensions, more health care, and other soft socialist programs.  Because the illness is being misdiagnosed, the solutions being proposed only threaten to exacerbate the symptoms.

If France and other European countries were truly interested in growth, they’d be cutting taxes on business. Yet, Hollande wants a 75 percent levy on the “rich” and to increase social spending. Socialists like Hollande and their ilk do not wish to save the private sector — they want to soak it. Very well.

But this is a true delusion. There is no painless way to solve the systemic imbalances caused by bloated political promises made to dependent classes of citizens. The rich are not rich enough to pay for the level of government we have.

There is no easier, softer way to stop the bleeding. Spending must be cut, budgets balanced, and debts paid down. Europe is nowhere near that right now. Nobody is.

But that’s not all that must be done. To alleviate the painful transition — and make no mistake it will be painful — real fiscal reform must be accompanied by pro-growth policies.

Here in the U.S., systemic unemployment and slow growth in the private sector could be addressed on the supply side. Capital gains and corporate taxes could be eliminated to encourage investment in U.S. companies. Environmental regulations that increase the cost of energy and of doing business here could be rescinded.

We could let banks fail when they make bad investments, and restore a sound money system to ensure price stability and an end to “too big to fail”. Instead, we have outsourced our nation’s monetary policy to an international bank cartel that does not share our national interests, threatens inflation on working families, and actually endangers our future prosperity.

We are all Icelanders now

The question before us is not growth versus austerity. That is a false choice being promoted by the state-controlled media.

The real question is whether the West will submit to this established order — represented by the bank cartel and entrenched political parties — or reject it.

What the elections in Europe actually show is the absolute disgust on both the left and the right that the people have for the establishment. In France, the conservative incumbent president who represented the status quo was deposed. In Greece, both of the two major parties including the ruling Socialists were crushed, garnering just 32 percent of the popular vote.

Instead, 68 percent voted for lesser known, more radical parties that rejected the European bailout of banks that bet poorly on sovereign debt. And it’s not just in Greece and France.

When Spanish citizens wave Icelandic flags at rallies, we have a movement.  In April 2011, Icelanders defeated via referendum a bailout of British and Dutch investors who had lost funds in Icesave bank in 2008.

It was a remarkable rejection of this debt slavery that is dragging down our societies.  Little noticed by mainstream media, the example set by the people of Iceland resonates more with each passing day.  The voters of Europe on May 6 cast their vote like Icelanders, rejecting the status quo, rejecting the dictates and threats of the banking and political elites.  In a very real sense, the Iceland example has become a modern-day Lexington and Concord, a shot heard around the world fired against an encroaching tyranny.

We are not immune here in the U.S.  In fact, we are leading the movement.  From Tea Party in 2009 and 2010 to Occupy in 2011 to May 8’s overwhelming defeat of a senior establishment figure like Richard Lugar in Indiana, the people are rejecting the rotting corpse of the established order.

Some folks like their rebellion with a leftwing taste and others with a rightwing taste.  Regardless, it is still rebellion, a refusal to accept the same old tired slogans and threats.

Mouthpieces for the establishment have dubbed this trend rejectionism; an attempt at a slur.  But for tens of millions of Americans and hundreds of millions world-wide it is not a slur but a badge of honor.  It is a rejectionism of the welfare statism of the post-war period, a rejectionism of the loss of soveregnity, a rejectionism of debt slavery, a rejectionism of working to pay for others to do nothing, and a rejectionism of the purposeful destruction of national identities and culture.

Make no mistake. No less than the very sovereignty and liberty of free peoples everywhere depends on rejection of the international order that has evolved since the end of World War II.   The central banking cartel and their willing political accomplices are pushing us into an international tyranny — run on debt.

The real story of the European elections is the rise and assertiveness of rejectionism, the refusal to accept the so-called solutions from the self-appointed “experts.”  That story, no matter how hard the mainstream media and spin-doctors try to cover it up, is the one that will continue to play out around the globe, including the U.S., in the coming months.


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Wed, 05/09/2012 - 17:44 | 2411444 buryfarmer
buryfarmer's picture

The day the EU finds out spain will need a a bailout:

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:33 | 2411548 slaughterer
slaughterer's picture



FUCK MERKEL (or maybe not!!!!!!!)

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 22:01 | 2411972 vh070
vh070's picture

Well said.  Actually, fucking is the solution.  Fuck more and spend less.  The more you fuck the less you are inclined to spend on useless goods.  Be denied your natural need and you will divert effort to acquiring useless fuck-subsitute goods, like caviar, LV and a heap of other luxuries.  I call on all men and women of the world to put out.  To your spouse, neighbour, colleague, secretary or any passing stranger.  Dispense with the preliminaries, like courtship (never foreplay).  Just say, "Wanna fucking save the world?" Give it up, brothers and sisters for the benefit of mankind.  Let's give new meaning to the phrase, "We're all fucked."

Thu, 05/10/2012 - 23:57 | 2416195 Half_A_Billion_...
Half_A_Billion_Hollow_Points's picture

fuck like it's weimar berlin

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:42 | 2411572 Dan The Man
Dan The Man's picture

Sarcasty bragged about austerity that wasn't really there.  Hollandaise just threw it back in his face.  Braaaavo.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:09 | 2411737 NumberNone
NumberNone's picture

In government austerity is defined as increasing spending by only 14% versus the originally planned 15%.  This reduced growth rate is defined as a cut and therefore austerity has been achieved. 

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 21:01 | 2411854 Xkwisetly Paneful
Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

THey just need to decimate the military and raise taxes-

oh wait they like many of their neighbors already did that and are still broke.


Wed, 05/09/2012 - 21:45 | 2411946 BooMushroom
BooMushroom's picture

This article would be more informative if the budget "cuts" were expressed as a percent of their budgets. Clearly $2B of the US budget is nothing, but Portugal's GDP is only $208B, a mere sliver of ours.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 17:52 | 2411459 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Wait, the good people of Indiana ousted Dick Lugar???

*wonders what kind of dick he'll be replaced with*

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:52 | 2411698 nmewn
nmewn's picture

Yep, and some cat in prison got forty percent against O'Barry in WV...its like the dims couldn't decide which one was worse for them.

Gotta admit somebody in prison can't screw it up much worse than it is

Meanwhile Rosie O'Donnel wants to boycott NC because the folks there said marriage is between a man & a woman...of course O'Barry will accept the dim nomination for prezbo at Bank of America NC...which seems...well, awkward, with the other Irish-American (O'Donnel) calling for a boycott on the state, one now assumes anyone who attends is a fire breathing republican bigot...or sumpin.

Not as awkward as O'Barry being against it before he was for it...but still, pretty damned weird.

Polictical update done! ;-)

Thu, 05/10/2012 - 00:06 | 2412211 CrimsonAvenger
CrimsonAvenger's picture

Rosie O'Donnell is boycotting NC because of Amendment One? I didn't vote for it, but if I knew it was guaranteed to keep her away I would have been awfully tempted.

Thu, 05/10/2012 - 06:11 | 2412508 nmewn
nmewn's picture

lol...I think many feel the same way.

And then of course, there's Rosie's pet elephant that she has dragged into the room that everyone is desperately trying to avoid looking at or step into the "gifts" the elephant leaves behind.

Apparently she is against any form of democratic process which produces a result she doesn't agree with.

The elephants name is Tyranny ;-)

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:02 | 2411721 ATM
ATM's picture

I'm in Indiana and voted against that fucktard Lugar. 

I also met him once in an airport bathroom. I was standing at the pisser with no one else in the place and Old Dick walks up and stands in the stall next to me....... He tried to look over the little divider but he's such a short little fuck he couldn't get a good look at the end of my dick.

I said, "how's it hangin' Dick!" and he mumbled some incomprehensible gibberish.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 17:55 | 2411460 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Austerity = Borrowing money to give to everyone but you.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:27 | 2411538 LetThemEatRand
LetThemEatRand's picture

Dead on, NotApplicable.  There is indeed already austerity for the people, but massive public debt funded stimulus for the bankers and bondholders.  

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 21:14 | 2411866 Xkwisetly Paneful
Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

The massive funded public debt is mostly to pay for unfunded social liabilities,

so why would anyone pretend otherwise? Are they just stupid beyond what would be lawful?

They a deluded fanatic that can't see epic fail no matter how obvious it happens to be?

like in the US where including state and local it is well over $100trillion or more than the bankers could fleece in numerous lifetimes.

from Chicago to Madrid including gay Paris,

no military spending in Chicago, not much in Madrid or Paris either,

much higher taxes though in all three-and still broke as hell.

notice Illinois recent refi of their pensions was priced with corporate junk?

course not, take the once most prosperous place in the world after the Erie Canal opened and run it into the ground like a $2whore-good job.

Epic fail the world over, Oh but please, please, please look at Germany.

Sure financed by worthless IOUS from their neighbors, the  US can become Germany,

first need to start selling shit to Mexico and Canada at premium prices while accepting worthless credit in return.

Then everyone needs to move into a house half the size and sell one car-the avg poverty stricken American lives in 50% more space hoand owns a full car more than the avg working German,

when you get done with that come back for more ,

and in the meantime play pretend, big government liberal socialism really didn't bankrupt most of the free world, it is all the banksters and military.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:28 | 2411539 Iwanttoknow
Iwanttoknow's picture

A dick with lots of bank money.Check market watch story.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 17:57 | 2411462 brewing
brewing's picture

"The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out... without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos. Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane and intolerable"
H. L. Mencken

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:11 | 2411503 Poor Grogman
Poor Grogman's picture

Somthing for the sheeple to aspire to.

Great quote


Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:09 | 2411632 Bill D. Cat
Bill D. Cat's picture

His throat cutting quotes are better . Ready the black flags .

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 17:57 | 2411466 disabledvet
disabledvet's picture

The Greeks will take a 40 percent across the board cut to their living standard with a return to the drachma. Is that...ahem..."austere" enough for you?

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:10 | 2411499 Paul Atreides
Paul Atreides's picture

You forgot to mention they will be able to recover in 3-5 years instead of MAYBE getting under 120% of GDP by 2020.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:42 | 2411679 oldtech
oldtech's picture

Let them eat cake for 3-5 years,....   Mmmmm


Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:31 | 2411783 BigJim
BigJim's picture

 The Greeks will take a 40 percent across the board cut to their living standard with a return to the drachma. Is that...ahem..."austere" enough for you?

Will they now? And what cut to their living standard will they take if they pay back their debt instead?

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:15 | 2411514 ThirdWorldDude
ThirdWorldDude's picture

A quote from the provided link - "If we instead turn to data from the International Monetary Fund's WEO database we see, first and foremost, that budget balances are in the process of improving dramatically..."


Yeah, it says a lot about the charts' credibility!

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 17:58 | 2411469 PivotalTrades
PivotalTrades's picture

The Fed will introduce Operation 3P.. Perpetual Prosperity Print.  They will print an amount of US$ necessary to buy enough Treasuries to drive the Yield to -6% thus not only self funding but also retiring the total outstanding debt

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:08 | 2411496 Desert Irish
Desert Irish's picture

Umm.....I think China might have something to say about that.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:32 | 2411789 BigJim
BigJim's picture

China should get rid of their USD positions yesterday. US default - either outright, or by inflation, or a mix of the two - is a matter of when, not if.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:04 | 2411471 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture

3 to 5% deficits are concidered normal... But in the future..l tomorrow... Others will start to save and pay down the debt... Promise... Just not us...
And after 5 years now, this shitpile has increased just enough to become to much.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:00 | 2411477 DCFusor
DCFusor's picture

One thing this guy gets really right is the idea of rejectionism.  The problem with it (the way these systems work) is when the new party thinks they have a "mandate".  No, you don't - we just hated the other guys and you were the only other thing on the ballot.  Hubris...

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:03 | 2411480 insanelysane
insanelysane's picture

The whole thing is being portrayed as countries having a choice.  You do have a choice.  You can either start spending what you are taking in and pay back your debt or you can keep spending as much as you can borrow until they won't let you borrow anymore at which point you start spending what you are taking in and don't bother paying back the debt.  Option 2 is what everyone is doing.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:43 | 2411681 JeffB
JeffB's picture

Live significantly below your income... and pay back your creditors over time.

Or Borrow as much as you can until it becomes so obvious you can't possibly pay back what you're borrowing, and then default, or partially default, and then move back to living roughly within your means

Or print fiat money to hide the defacto default/partial default to your creditors, until they stop loaning you more money and you're forced to print ever more until inflation rears it's ugly head, wiping out savers and investors, until the fiat "money" becomes useless as a means of trade or the pain becomes so great they finally stop the printing presses, or come up with some new alternative money.

There are no options without significant pain and a very significant drop in the national standard of living as "the new normal".

Almost all western nations, and many others are way in over their heads in debt. There are no options that don't entail much pain. Elections or revolutions can't change that fact.


Thu, 05/10/2012 - 08:21 | 2412666 smb12321
smb12321's picture

You are so right.  My wife and I are/were consultants and have always lived below our means.  We don't constantly worry about missing a house payment, water turned off or seeing Junior return from a college we can't afford.   More than anything, it was the lack of saving of those who were foreclosed and the fact that they were living paycheck to paycheck that caused the problem.  If someone has a year of savings then there is no (1) instant hysteria, (2) rush to take a pissy job or (3) worse, calls for the "government" to "help". 

The fiat party has a LONG way to go and all those ZHers predicting a collapse within two weeks, months or years are wrong.  

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:10 | 2411497 bank guy in Brussels
bank guy in Brussels's picture

There are two things being confused here -

'Austerity' as in programmes for common people, and social benefits, being cut -

And 'austerity' as general budget reduction, which was not cut so much, because the government funds were being used to bail out banks etc.

What common people count as 'austerity' - what is putting Greece on the verge of revolution, and what overthrew Sarkozy, is the first one.

The article above is talking about the second kind of 'austerity'.

The great point of Richard Koo, and others, if that government is to go into more debt in a balance sheet recession-depression, you need to maintain incomes of common people FIRST. That is what they did in Japan, and have avoided disaster for 22 years.

But cutting common people into poverty, and still bailing out bankster banks, that is sh*te that leads to fairly quick revolution, which is what you see in Europe right now.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:27 | 2411540 kennard
kennard's picture

What Greece owes the ECB was incurred through unsustainable government transfer payment/entitlement programs. That is but one example. Yours is a distinction without a difference. i would not hold up Japan as an example of how to "avoid disaster'.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:37 | 2411551 LetThemEatRand
LetThemEatRand's picture

"What Greece owes the ECB was incurred through unsustainable government transfer payment/entitlement programs."

Even if that is true (I could argue with you all night but what's the point), then the banks and bondholders who lent the money made a bad bet.  Why shouldn't they lose when they make a bad bet?  The Greek bailout is bailing out the banks and bondholders and the people are catching on.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:51 | 2411695 kennard
kennard's picture

"The Greek bailout is bailing out the banks and bondholders and the people are catching on."

The people are "catching on" that some polticians may stop the gravy train.

The average Greek or French-person could care less about bailed out banksters.

They care about what their government will give them.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:23 | 2411765 LetThemEatRand
LetThemEatRand's picture

Our differences aside.  Do you agree that the banks and bondholders who made bad bets should lose their money?  Or do you feel that they should keep all of their money and even profit from their poor choices through the issuance of new public debt payable by future taxpayers?

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:31 | 2411546 LetThemEatRand
LetThemEatRand's picture

And it is no coincidence or oversight that the MSM fails to mention your extremely valid points.  The debate we hear in the MSM about whether to cut or spend, completely misses the point that the entire Western world is spending money it does not have to give to bankers and bondholders, with the only apparent end game being to increase their wealth and to impoverish the citizens. 

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:36 | 2411799 BigJim
BigJim's picture

You're talking a lot of sense here, LTER; what happened?

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:45 | 2411816 LetThemEatRand
LetThemEatRand's picture

Back handed compliment, but that's better than nothing.  I give all the credit to Bank Guy from Brussels.  He sets it up quite well.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:35 | 2411555 Chaffinch
Chaffinch's picture

Thanks for explaining that so succinctly Bank Guy

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:41 | 2411567 PivotalTrades
PivotalTrades's picture

In Japan there was none of either.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:09 | 2411498 YesWeKahn
YesWeKahn's picture

This is to game ECB and BernankFED to print more.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:11 | 2411502 RECISION
RECISION's picture


Meet the new Clown - same as the last...

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:17 | 2411516 RacerX
RacerX's picture

This explains the runup in AAPL! They've cracked into -- not just an entirely new market, but SPECIES!

MIAMI (AP) — The 8-year-old twins love their iPad. They draw, play games and expand their vocabulary. Their family’s teenagers also like the hand-held computer tablets, too, but the clan’s elders show no interest.

The orangutans at Miami’s Jungle Island apparently are just like people when it comes to technology. The park is one of several zoos experimenting with computers and apes, letting its six orangutans use an iPad to communicate and as part of a mental stimulus program. Linda Jacobs, who oversees the program, hopes the devices will eventually help bridge the gap between humans and the endangered apes.

“Our young ones pick up on it. They understand it. It’s like, ‘Oh I get this,’” Jacobs said. “Our two older ones, they just are not interested. I think they just figure, ‘I’ve gotten along just fine in this world without this communication-skill here and the iPad, and I don’t need a computer.’”


Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:40 | 2411563 Seer
Seer's picture

It's humans' desire to kill all competition.  Make all other species with opposable thumbs arthritic.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:47 | 2411582 Ms. Erable
Ms. Erable's picture

AAPL gave iPads to Congress? Who knew?

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:51 | 2411597 Seer
Seer's picture

If only their use would make their peckers fall off so that we wouldn't have to suffer their offspring.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:37 | 2411802 BigJim
BigJim's picture

iPad - choice of apes!

Hmmm, no, not sure that is such a good slogan.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:22 | 2411524 kennard
kennard's picture

There is a big difference between what is being "rejected" in Europe and what is being rejected in the U.S.

In Europe, virtually the entire population wants government spending to at least remain the same, with over haf the population wanting to increase it, spitting in the face of economic reality. No wonder "austerity" is seen as merely decreasing the rate of growth of government.

In the U.S., 40% of the population, by my estimate, actually wants to decrease government spending, as exemplified by the Tea Party movement. By drawing an equivalence between the Tea Party and the Occupy movement and trying to be inclusive toward statists, the article heads in the wrong direction.

Everything else the article mentions, such as supporting sovereignty and rejecting foreign (German) control is just a smoke screen for people acting out of their perceived self interest. They want more welfare, fatter pensions, less work and more dole. Follow the money.

At least there is a glimmer of hope in the U.S. Europe is lost.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:06 | 2411599 psychobilly
psychobilly's picture

"In the U.S., 40% of the population, by my estimate, actually wants to decrease government spending, as exemplified by the Tea Party movement."

Just don't cut their welfare checks or try to scale back the global military empire/domestic police state.

"By drawing an equivalence between the Tea Party and the Occupy movement and trying to be inclusive toward statists, the article heads in the wrong direction."

Most of those who self-identify as Tea Partiers ARE statists.  They usually or almost always vote Republican - a hyper-statist political party.  And most have a favorable view of GW Chimp.  What passes for the "Tea Party" these days is mostly a bunch of  war-  and welfare-loving statist idiots posing as libertarians (at least until Red Team is back in the White House).

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:13 | 2411638 Seer
Seer's picture

People are still stuck on the ideals of the original movements, failing to notice how they are now so distorted that they do NOT represent what their basis really was.

Current OWS taken over by the Dems.

Current Tea Party taken over by Kochs.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:27 | 2411657 kennard
kennard's picture

"Just don't cut their welfare checks"

That's the current Democrat meme on the Tea Party movement, supported by several polls conducted by their friends.

I like the non-partisan spin of this site and see the TP as just that, not R or D. Despite all the accusations abot Koch brothers' involvement, ask most Republicans what they think about the Tea Party. They'll start spitting nails.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:02 | 2411719 r00t61
r00t61's picture

The Tea Party got co-opted about 47 seconds after their nascent birth.  The original TP message was about opposing the bailouts of the banks, ending the twisted fascist relationship between governments and banking cartels, and refusing to engage in more foolish Keynesian debt-fueled stimulus to plant the "green shoots" of America's "recovery."

After co-option, by the likes of Dick Armey et. al, this message was immediately turned into another religious right "God, Gays, and Guns" segment of the Demopublican party.  Destined to fail as soon as it started mixing a social platform with a fiscal one.

All one needs to do is look at the voting record of the TP freshmen that entered Congress.  PATRIOT Act Extension?  Yes.  NDAA passage?  Yes.  Debt ceiling increase?  Check.  Audit the Fed?  No support.  Withdraw troops from Iraq and Afghanistan?  No support. Reject government controlled healthcare?  Yes, except, oh by the way, keep Medicare intact.  The list goes on and on.  On voting records, which is where, all rhetoric aside, the rubber meets the road, you can't tell the difference between a "Tea Party" Congresscritter and a plain-old Demopublican Congresscritter.  There's a reason for that.  THERE IS NONE.  They all support the welfare-warfare state.

TP may have started out with good intentions or whatever, but as soon as they land in Washington, their eyes are immediately opened.  Do what you're told, and you'll get campaign contributions, and ride the gravy train, and be set in your new job as parasite rentier for life.  Don't, and we'll just replace you with someone willing to do so. 

They all contract what Ron Paul calls "Potomac fever."

Demopublicans by any name (Democrats, Republicans, Tea Partiers, liberals, conservatives, progressives, moderates, centrists, paleo-this or neo-that) rail against each other during the day in the news media with clever soundbites manufactured for them by their public relations staff.  Then, at night, they dine together on fine steaks and champagne, laughing at the hoi polloi for their unending gullibility.

Thu, 05/10/2012 - 00:55 | 2412272 kennard
kennard's picture

PATRIOT Act Extension? Yes. - twenty-seven Republicans voted Nay;

NDAA passage? Yes. - Forty-three Tea Party freshman voted Nay;

Debt ceiling increase? Check. - Thirty-nine Tea Party freshmen voted Nay;

Audit the Fed? No support. - A compromise was struck;

Withdraw troops from Iraq and Afghanistan? No support. - This was never a Tea Party position.

Reject government controlled healthcare? Yes, except, oh by the way, keep Medicare intact. Who advocates eliminating Medicare?

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 23:42 | 2412172 AurorusBorealus
AurorusBorealus's picture

In Europe, In America, In Japan the status quo exists because people will it so.  One misreads the lessons of history if one believes that some popular, "revolutionary" movement is going to replace the current fascist tyranny of the West.

It is precisely these popular, "revolutionary" movments that have created fascist tyrannies.

Nazism, fascism, communism: every place that these ideals have sprung up in the past two centuries, these came from mass and popular discontent with the ancien regime (monarchy / aristocracy).  Fascism was not imposed upon the West from above.  Quite the contrary.  The banking oligopoly was along for the ride most of the time: surviving violent changes like mischievous rats.  That the banking oligolopy of the West is now a cornerstone of modern tyranny, does not imply that the banking oligopoly created the modern tyranny.

Modern western tyranny will not be halted or defeated by the masses: rather it must be done by the few.

Thu, 05/10/2012 - 13:27 | 2413791 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

You forgot The Big One - the French Revolution, the one that started it all. Its atrocities are still among the worst in history even after the 20th century. And it was all in the name of liberté, egalité, fraternité.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:22 | 2411530 JR
JR's picture

After every election, the winners and the losers miraculously know what was in the minds of the voters; and it fits everything they’ve been predicting for months.

And I am no different… I say the French voted against the threats, not of deep significant cuts, but the threats of a dominating political European center outside of France that would remove their sovereignty piece by piece.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:29 | 2411542 Piranhanoia
Piranhanoia's picture

We could have a big government if we rated honesty higher than crime.  Or if a whistleblower could do just that, instead of having to go to the sub department of the basement next to the jail cell and talk to the only person that is ever going to hear the complaint.  Or if we had more inspectors looking out for their neighbors food rather than in the planning department of "how to have war forever".


Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:51 | 2411591 Seer
Seer's picture


BIG = a power center, and all centers of power get corrupted.  Why?

"The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money."

- Alexis de Tocqueville

And this is what the PEOPLE demand!

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:54 | 2411704 Bohm Squad
Bohm Squad's picture

Irony is, with such a moral framework, big government would not happen.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:35 | 2411557 Pairadimes
Pairadimes's picture

Defame. Defraud. Dissemble.



Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:46 | 2411579 Seer
Seer's picture

Notice the common theme on BOTH sides?  GROWTH!  They ALL lie!

The rich want to keep what they've stolen.  The downtrodden want to steal from the rich.

Bill Wilson is going to get what's he's wanting - smaller govt, and then some.  Hope he gets it that this road leads to the absence of "protection" for his property...  Not being judgmental, just stating the obvious (and talking heads always want to stop the ride before it crashes into the ground- ha, ha- stop gravity! - wake the fuck up!)

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:50 | 2411595 Spacemoose
Spacemoose's picture

what is this "protection of property" of which you speak, says the man from whom the gov't takes 40% of the fruits of his labor and 2.2% of the value of his home every year? 

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:06 | 2411624 Seer
Seer's picture

Police... courts...

I want NO/ZERO govt.  This means that if someone steals 100% of YOUR home's value it's up to you to deal with (and not for me to pay for your defense).  I have no stupid idealistic expectations that we can have any such thing as a "limited" govt- it's like thinking that you can be just a little pregnant.  This concept is just a fallacy promoted by the wealthy to have their cake and eat it too.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:16 | 2411639 Spacemoose
Spacemoose's picture

well personally, i want the function of government to be to preserve my individual freedom, and with rare exceptions, nothing else.  given the demonstrated tendancy throughout history, of humans to organize themselves into political and social groups, i doubt that your agenda has much chance of ever coming to fruition, as it appears to me that your position simply flies in the face of human nature.  the sad reality is, we must deal with our species as they are, not as how we would like them to be.  

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:42 | 2411678 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Guess what, though? Everything you desire, can only exist within a self-governed society (which DOES exist within human nature). The idea that one can delegate their responsibility to another is what creates all of the incoherence you see. Criminals will never protect you regardless of how much you desire their aid. They will merely pretend to do so while they fulfill their own desires.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:43 | 2411811 Seer
Seer's picture

Thank you for stating it so coherently.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:35 | 2411667 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Here's the obvious. Legal protection of property existed long before the governments that currently enforce it. Government simply usurped and monopolized the practice by enshrining Admirality Law (and other forms) as its own.

But hey, if you really believe that a criminal cartel has the capacity, let alone the ability to protect your property rights, well... I wish you luck. What I've found is those who utilize the court system, do so because it's the easiest way to legally steal property, (as honest people can either work it out on their own, or use private arbitration). Criminals though, well, they prefer to use the violent coercion of state instead.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 18:49 | 2411589 israhole
Wed, 05/09/2012 - 19:52 | 2411688 sof_hannibal
sof_hannibal's picture

Austerity is nothing more then code word for cutting budgets and bailing out banks, largerly due to (shock) bad loans/ doctored books courtesy of the squid...

So, yeah, in that sense austerity hasn't been tried... it's bankers vs
idiots in the EU; there is no vivable solution other then utter collapse; ot just do what Iceland did-- those crafty mother fuckers...

Bring austerity to the US while we bail out zombie corporations (as we have done), and watch the sparks fly..

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 21:32 | 2411903 Omen IV
Omen IV's picture

this  all comes down to Iceland example - the Premier (honest politician) put the referedum to the people and they walked from the debt of the Banks owed to the UK and Dutch and put the senior bankers in jail --- they are doing fine - BK the Banks in USA and Europe - let the investors in the banks lose everything - nationalize and recapitalize the banks and put 1,000 bankers in jail from each of the five US banks for 20 years with no internet access and no outside communications so they cant spread their lies - give the homeowners new mortgage at 50% of orginal loan value and move on

cancel the WTO and GATT treaties - demand immediate closure of the trade window with  tariffs imposed on foreign labor content below US rates - give Europe with comparable wage rates preference to USA market and vice versa -- this will transfer jobs back from Orient within six months

create a marginal tax rate of 65% over $1 million adjusted gross Income with % tax credits issued towards the marginal rate for each 100,000 increase in jobs over the average of past three years - and reduce unemployment by the proactive actions of the 1% - carrrot and stick!

dont need more government jobs -  just need to use the latent demand and resources already in place - in a hierarchy of evil - inflation is a lesser evil than murder by neglect!

screw  the chinamen!


Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:14 | 2411752 q99x2
q99x2's picture

That's right no austerity. Well except Greece is in shambles. Nonetheless the intelligence agencies and politicians finally realized it is easier to take the money from the elite and banksters and give it back to the people than to keep feeding NATO. It requires a bit more of a social punch but the tide has turned. What the hell am I talking about? Greed. It doesn't stop but keeps flowing in an unspecified but definitive direction.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 20:44 | 2411813 chinaboy
chinaboy's picture

Excellent article!

I hope to read more of Bill Wilson's post here on ZeroHedge.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 21:06 | 2411861 lolmao500
lolmao500's picture

What will America do when real austerity hits and there's only Mittens 2 VS Hillary in 2016?? What happens when there's no peaceful means to change politics?? You know what happens.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 21:23 | 2411890 Null Shrub
Null Shrub's picture

This is a complete distortion of "austerity" as understood by the people made to suffer it.  Yes, technically the fact that governments have borrowed massively to prop up their failing banking, overleveraged industrial and military sectors means that the government is not itself "austere."  But concurrently slashing social services (health, education, etc.) and jobs imposes "austerity" on the populace - the expense of propping up the wealthy who by all rights were bankurpt isn't borne by the wealthy.  That kind of austerity does eventually hurt the economy.  That's as plain as day by watching tax revenues fall in every country where it's being practiced.  Either this person doesn't understand this obvious distinction or he's deliberately making a cheap argument.  Either of those failings provides a good reason not to listen to him.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 21:31 | 2411913 Stuck on Zero
Stuck on Zero's picture

Dudes.  It's austerity for the 99% and boomtimes for the 1%.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 21:54 | 2411956 CharlieSDT
CharlieSDT's picture

Tru dat, bro.

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 23:11 | 2412098 jmc8888
jmc8888's picture

Austerity isn't a cumlative number, it's the program by program cuts.

So if country A slashes spending on food stamps, unemployment, healthcare, etc say by 25 billion, which in Greece would be a huge amount and definitely be AUSTERITY, but spends say 26 billion on debt payments, tax collections, etc...then you have a situation where Austerity IS being done, but the total spending is up.

Let's put it this way...if the U.S. ended all food stamps and all unemployment benefits, but starts a new war in Iran that would more than offset the 'savings' by austerity, would austerity not exist....simply because total spending was higher?

The thesis of the author is completely flawed.  It's not TOTAL spending, austerity is the reduction of funds, program by program.  Any decrease is a kind of austerity.

Also the idea that, when smaller levels helped caused what we've seen, bigger ones somehow would do the trick and be appropriate is supposed to be correct?  All for fraud mind you?  Printing nor Austerity won't change jack shit.

Take about a guy as loony as Ben Bernanke, just from the other idiot side.

Hollande isn't a change candidate.  He's a globalist and monetarist.  Some change.  He's change like Obama, the French only think they've voted for a change.  While some of the difference will be huge to the untrained eye, none of the changes are in the areas that matter. Cheminade was the true change candidate, if Hollande does was is expected expect Cheminade to rip him a new asshole.


Thu, 05/10/2012 - 04:23 | 2412447 Zero Govt
Zero Govt's picture

"Austerity isn't a cumlative number, it's the program by program cuts."


So despite the budgets and Govt debt-spending going up, they're really being cut is that right?

More spending equals "austerity"... even more spending equals less austerity.

Houston, we have a big problem with English here!

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 23:23 | 2412135 Gift Whores
Gift Whores's picture

They're all high.

Thu, 05/10/2012 - 02:48 | 2412379 slackrabbit
slackrabbit's picture

 Nigel Farage debates the Euro crisis and Greek bailout

Thu, 05/10/2012 - 04:18 | 2412439 Zero Govt
Zero Govt's picture

"Environmental regulations that increase the cost of energy and of doing business here could be rescinded."

Even better/quicker just cut the budget of the EPA ....completely. Hard to enforce legislation when there's no waged muppets or Dept

...shutter the EPA (and the rest of Govt)

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