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PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 9:34 AM 
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Found this via Andrew Sullivan:

http://michaelscomments.wordpress.com/2 ... ent-chart/

Here is the Obama team projections:

Image

And here is the actual data with unemployment numbers.

Image

As I read this:

- The dark blue line is what the Obama economic team stated we would be at if we passed the stimulus.
- The light blue line is what the Obama economic team stated we would be at if we did NOT pass the stimulus.
- The red dots are actual unemployment data.

Wow. The trend line is horrifying. I have little doubt we'll be at 10% unemployment very soon. Meanwhile, I read a report that as much as $1 out of every $10 of the stimulus will be used for fraudulent purposes.

More analysis here: http://obsidianwings.blogs.com/obsidian ... orrow.html


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 9:58 AM 
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I keep wondering where the skeptics are with his unmeasurable "jobs saved and created" line.

You would have thought from the last administration that we would not swallow vast unmeasurables from any politician.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 12:52 PM 
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Meanwhile, I read a report that as much as $1 out of every $10 of the stimulus will be used for fraudulent purposes.


Which is basically what happened in Iraq all over again, just closer to home this time. I'm really starting to think that government, in general, lacks any ability to track anything larger than their own salaries.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 1:52 PM 
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Unfortunately, 1 out of every 10 dollars is an improvement over typical government spending practices. This is not something that is an American only thing though, it affects all governments.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 9:55 AM 
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I keep wondering where the skeptics are with his unmeasurable "jobs saved and created" line.

You would have thought from the last administration that we would not swallow vast unmeasurables from any politician.


NPR had a story about this a few months ago, when the jobs saved and created line began. I can't remember the details, but apparently there is some kind of standard calculation used by economists working in government that extrapolates the number of jobs saved or lost based on how much a government spends, and based on how much taxes are raised or cut in a given economy. Obama's team used those calculations for their numbers. You don't see a lot of polititians bitching about them being used (outside of extreme right Rush-style bullshit) simply because everyone else has been using them too.

As for the other numbers Joxur gave concerning unemployment, I find myself skeptical of his graphs, but only because my admittedly faulty memory remembers Obama's team stating that we would probably hit 10% unemployment, which would be at odds with the graphs you threw at us.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 11:06 AM 
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Meanwhile, I read a report that as much as $1 out of every $10 of the stimulus will be used for fraudulent purposes.


Well of course. (I actually expect it to be much worse than that.)

What did we all think would happen when we pretty much just closed our eyes and flung billions upon billions of dollars at these people? Did we really think that the Gordon Gekko's of the world were all going to say, "Oh, thanks for the billions, we'll get right to using it to help everyone!"


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 12:41 PM 
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Page 5, Fribur:

http://otrans.3cdn.net/45593e8ecbd339d074_l3m6bt1te.pdf


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2009 11:17 AM 
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So check this out. In regards to whether the stimulus is working or not.

There are two organizations that, at the time, offered competing data in regards to projected deficits. OMB and CBO. Now, OMB is a unit inside the White House and headed by Peter Orszag. CBO is a nonpartisan government organization.

Back in February, when the White House and OMB first claimed that they had knocked two trillion dollars off of the projections thanks to the superpowers of their economic stimulus package, the CBO sounded quite pessimistic. OMB director Peter Orszag at the time replied on the OMB blog that the CBO didn’t give enough consideration to the power of the stimulus:

Quote:
During last Thursday’s briefing on the President’s FY 2010 Budget, CEA Chair Christina Romer was asked many questions about the economic forecast underlying the Budget – and since then some news reports have highlighted differences between the Administration’s forecast and the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) forecast.

The problem with this comparison is that our forecast includes the effects of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which has now been signed into law. The CBO forecast, by contrast, was published in January and did not take into account the effects of the Recovery Act.

To put the forecasts on an “apples-to-apples” basis, one can take the CBO forecast and add in the effects from CBO’s macroeconomic analysis of the Recovery Act—which included both a “high” and “low” estimate for the projected effect of the act. …

The results show that the Administration’s GDP forecast is entirely consistent with CBO’s forecast (and indeed right in the middle of CBO’s “high” and “low” estimates) once the effects of the Recovery Act are included.
We all know that on Friday the White House released data that showed we'd be right at the CBO's initial projection, $9 trillion. At the time the stimulus was being sold to us, the OMB said that $9 trillion was an accurate number WITHOUT the stimulus - yet here we are. OMB said "hey, the CBO is right but with the stimulus, it will be much lower. " Stimulus passes, and here we are at the original projection without the stimulus.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2009 12:35 PM 
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Just goes to show how crappy a job these government agencies do at projecting the future. I was just listening to NPR the other day and they mentioned the CBO has not had a resonably close prediction in the last 20 years. I wonder how bad their projection would have been had they taken ARRA into account.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2009 1:39 PM 
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rugen wrote:
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Meanwhile, I read a report that as much as $1 out of every $10 of the stimulus will be used for fraudulent purposes.


Which is basically what happened in Iraq all over again, just closer to home this time. I'm really starting to think that government, in general, lacks any ability to track anything larger than their own salaries.


QFT... and lets have them manage Health Care!

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2009 2:28 PM 
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Rokhan wrote:
rugen wrote:
Quote:
Meanwhile, I read a report that as much as $1 out of every $10 of the stimulus will be used for fraudulent purposes.


Which is basically what happened in Iraq all over again, just closer to home this time. I'm really starting to think that government, in general, lacks any ability to track anything larger than their own salaries.


QFT... and lets have them manage Health Care!


They're not going to manage as much as pay for it. They ALREADY DO THIS FOR A PORTION OF THE POPULACE. It works out quite well for them.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2009 8:09 PM 
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Image

Interesting...


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:59 AM 
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Horrible job figures this month. Previous months revised to be worse than thought. And here's an updated graph.

Image

Enjoying the recovery?


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:23 AM 
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the "unemployment number" does not tell the whole unemployment picture. There have been millions of people that are out of work that are no longer getting unemployment benefits that are now not counted. That is part of the reason why the numbers "improved" recently.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 2:30 PM 
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Whatever the numbers are, they would have been worse without the stimulus.

And yes, I have been enjoying the recovery. Thanks for asking! As soon as I saw the news report this morning, I thought, "I bet Joxur is jumping all over this one!" I see I haven't been disappointed.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 2:44 PM 
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Whatever the numbers are, they would have been worse without the stimulus.
Everything comes at a price. In this case, inadequate stimulus cost us our future from a debt standpoint. I look forward to seeing your thoughts when we're talking about raising the debt ceiling again -- this year.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:13 PM 
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Did you actually think your democrats could spend there way out of unemployment?

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:25 PM 
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I can tell you my thoughts right now. Until the Republicans realize that it is impossible to balance the budget without raising revenues, we will continue to raise the debt ceiling until we are bankrupt.

Pretty simple really. We can't do it without serious cuts in government programs, and we can't do it without raising revenues. I have seen the Democrats willing to make cuts, but there are still large numbers of Tea Party idiots that refuse to even speak of any tax increases. I honestly have started to get the feeling that the resulting gridlock will drive us to bankruptcy as a country eventually. I really feel like the government as it stands right now simply won't work. Too many people out there look at politics as an "I win only if you lose" situation. Too many people look at the opposite party from who they think should be running the country and assume anything they say must be evil even if their own party proposed almost the same thing before (see "government mandated health care" for example). Obama said it... it must be evil! Romney said it... it must be evil!

And that is what is going to destroy us. I really think we are in serious decline, and I really think it is because of that partisan gridlock. I have heard people say that they like deadlocked government in these forums, but I think you are wrong. The inability to pass meaningful legislation that results from political gridlock is going to destroy us.

ahhh... someone posted before I did. My answer to you is "no" Miramicha. I do not. I never said anything like that, actually, but it's that kind of taking sides and strawmen-creation that I am talking about in this post.

If you remember (and damn we all have short memories!), we really were at the brink of total financial collapse back then. I still remember that hour long laymen's terms-description of the financial problems described on This American Life back then and being scared shitless at how close we were to a total fuckup. How screwed up were we? Even the Republicans were talking about needing a serious stimulus to get things going. Certainly almost every unbiased, non-political economist pointed out that we needed a huge stimulus to save us. In fact, what was eventually passed was complained by many to be too small!

But time has passed, and now it is just "omg evil liberal spending" all over again, and I just get sick of it. We still have an auto-industry because of those bailouts. We still have a working banking system. Sure, it didn't work perfectly, and sure some money got spent in places that some of us won't agree with, but you just forget that something had to be done.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 4:24 PM 
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Fribur, just because *something needed to be done* doesn't alleviate you from responsibility when your solution doesn't work. Things are judged by results, not good intentions. I let my kid get away with good intentions. Not elected leaders. There should be accountability. Do you disagree?


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 6:29 PM 
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Of course I agree that there should be accountability. I just don't agree with your claim that it didn't work. Given my understanding of economics in general, I still believe that we would have been much worse off without it. I can't believe, for example, that we would be better off right now, with all other things being the same, if we had allowed the auto-makers to fail, laying off hundreds of thousands more workers with economic repercussions rippling throughout our society.

Obama always said it would be a long process, taking years. There was, and is, no magic bullet. I was actually always impressed by his statement that it would take years, rather than promising that he could fix everything magically if we just voted for him. It was a statement of reality. Presidents have always had limited impact on the economy at best, and I was saying that on these forums even when Bush was president. Now you are angry because he couldn't magically fix it?

Personally, I think the President can get elected, do what he/she can do to try to affect things in a positive direction, and then sit in his home and hope that the economy itself will simply right itself while they are in office so they can take credit for it.

I certainly believe that long term policies enacted by president's can have some effect; I simply don't see how you can expect a President to wave a wand and make everything better given the fact that he is forced by our Constitution to work with Congress.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2012 12:04 AM 
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Fribur, just because *something needed to be done* doesn't alleviate you from responsibility when your solution doesn't work.


Parroting the Fox News "failed stimulus" thing, I see.

Let me guess, you've got, "Can your family spend their way out of debt?!" locked and loaded for the next shot, right?


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2012 2:35 AM 
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joxur wrote:
Everything comes at a price. In this case, inadequate stimulus cost us our future from a debt standpoint.

Right, because the two wars were were in for the last fucking decade didn't contribute at all. If McCain had been elected, you think we'd be out of Iraq yet? Or would we still be pumping money into that shithole for no reason?

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2012 3:01 PM 
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Of course I agree that there should be accountability. I just don't agree with your claim that it didn't work. Given my understanding of economics in general, I still believe that we would have been much worse off without it. I can't believe, for example, that we would be better off right now, with all other things being the same, if we had allowed the auto-makers to fail, laying off hundreds of thousands more workers with economic repercussions rippling throughout our society.
Measured against its own, stated goals it missed the mark. Not by a little bit. By a lot.

It's like a sports team breaking the bank to get superstar players to win a championship. Not only did we not win a championship, we didn't make the playoffs and barely improved our record on the previous year. Yes, some improvement was made. But the improvement was not worth the cost. The numbers don't lie, Fribur.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2012 3:05 PM 
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We still are much better off than if it had not been done. <shrug>


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2012 3:34 PM 
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I have to agree we need to raise taxes and then cut back on many government programs, staff, policies, etc. I mean why can't our government take a %5 paycut for all higher end salaries?

I also thought how much of a precentage of a tax increase we would need across the board to pay down our debt by %50 over a 5 to 10 year span.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:32 PM 
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Yes, some improvement was made. But the improvement was not worth the cost. The numbers don't lie, Fribur.


That logic makes the assumption that it wasn't possible to get any worse. It assumes that we were at X, and that we could only go in the direction where X increased, but the stimulus only gave us X+Y for small values of Y and failed.

You totally ignore the fact that we could easily have instead headed for X-Y instead.

It's like having 10 apples, someone steals 8 of them, then your friend bob gives you 9 apples to help you out. So you have 11 apples left and cry, "What the hell Bob, a gain of ONE apple? That didn't help at all!" while totally ignoring the fact that without Bob you would have actually had one apple left period.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:42 PM 
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It's like having 10 apples, someone steals 8 of them, then your friend bob gives you 9 apples to help you out. So you have 11 apples left and cry, "What the hell Bob, a gain of ONE apple? That didn't help at all!" while totally ignoring the fact that without Bob you would have actually had one apple left period.
That's a decent analogy. But you left out the part where they cut down the entire Apple orchard for a gain of one apple.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:53 AM 
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But they didn't.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:39 AM 
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Yeah, I don't get where an orchard was cut down. We didn't lose our ability to produce apples. (if anything, the idea was to preserve that capability!)


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 2:42 PM 
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I'm guessing this is a Fox News line, but it still doesn't have much opposition in logic: Encouraging failure can most definitely hamper such an ability.

Even while Fribur bemoans the potential for job loss amongst those businesses, by propping them up you're creating arbitrary value in a market that placed little value on it in the first place. It also discourages small business via the suggestion that bigger businesses don't have to fail. If you don't give natural conditions the chance to carry out their course, there is no chance to grow. It's like cutting open the cocoon of a butterfly because he has to sit still for several months before he can fly. Industries are struggling because the time has come for us to adapt and find new methods, spurred on by necessity, the mother of all invention.

I prefer that to Obama's inexperienced whimsies.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 4:47 PM 
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Don't give the money to corporations, so they can't use it to not create jobs. Also, if they do create jobs with the money they get, it's not like they're creating middle-class quality-of-life jobs, they're creating the shittiest manual labor they can for the minimum wage they can legally pay. That's not progress. Get corporations the fuck out of our government and we'll have some progress.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 5:49 PM 
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It's pretty easy. We built a bunch of bridges. Now we can't fund schools. Get it yet?


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:24 PM 
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It's pretty easy. We built a bunch of bridges. Now we can't fund schools. Get it yet?


To be fair, we never really funded schools all that well...and nothing shows that more money = better schools anyway.

Also, I assumed we were talking about the Stimulus, not the bailouts. Although there's some overlap, they are different things.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:55 PM 
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Ayup. Specifically, both involve:

Quote:
creating arbitrary value in a market that placed little value on it in the first place.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 12:14 AM 
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Hang on a minute.

In that first sentence, you're talking about the invalidity of the original projections in light of real data. Right after that, you're scaring the children with a "report" describing something happening in the future. We call those projections, not reports.

Pick one. Should we listen to projections, or not?


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 7:36 AM 
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My point is that not only did the stimulus fail by its own measure of success (which is fact), if examined in light of the consequences of that spending, it REALLY failed. If it were free money, I could accept Fribur's statement that it was better than nothing. Given that it's not, and the ramifications of the amount of debt we have, it needed to be a slam-dunk for it to be worth it.

That debt will have longterm repercussions. It will undermine our ability to reform entitlements that need reform. It will push the retirement age back years. It will ripple throughout our government and effect it in profound ways.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:54 AM 
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Bovinity Divinity wrote:
Quote:
Yes, some improvement was made. But the improvement was not worth the cost. The numbers don't lie, Fribur.


That logic makes the assumption that it wasn't possible to get any worse. It assumes that we were at X, and that we could only go in the direction where X increased, but the stimulus only gave us X+Y for small values of Y and failed.

You totally ignore the fact that we could easily have instead headed for X-Y instead.

It's like having 10 apples, someone steals 8 of them, then your friend bob gives you 9 apples to help you out. So you have 11 apples left and cry, "What the hell Bob, a gain of ONE apple? That didn't help at all!" while totally ignoring the fact that without Bob you would have actually had one apple left period.


In this case, "Bob" is "China" and we're going to have to repay Bob 3 apples per year just to cover interest.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 10:12 AM 
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joxur wrote:
It's pretty easy. We built a bunch of bridges. Now we can't fund schools. Get it yet?


Schools were funded to begin with?

Also i just do not care for having to pay back China, they seem to be in the same boat we are in.

We are all doomed, time to brush up on bartering skills.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:30 PM 
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Keeping the banking and auto industry from failing was definitely worth the money. Not doing it would have been economically catastrophic. That is my opinion. Yes, it involves a projected guess as to what would have happened in the future without the bailouts, but any argument for any other course of action involves a projected guess as to what would have happened in the future as well.

Listen to this again-- Cakvala first posted it on these forums. Again I repeat... people so quickly forget how fucked we really were. This is not a hysterical news report... it's a simple down to earth explanation of how close things got to falling apart. I'm not talking about the auto industry here-- I'm talking about the banking industry.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 6:17 PM 
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Fribur... fuck man. TARP and the stimulus are completely different. TARP bailed out banks. Not the stimulus.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 6:48 PM 
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I know this. I believe both were good things.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:39 AM 
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I think the only person debating the importance of TARP is you.


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