We have a final!

By now everyone should know the drill, some Hollywood celebrity flies into the area to pick up a taxpayer funded welfare check, films a few scenes and immediately flies the heck out (Mississippi / State of Louisiana in general) or sticks around and goes on a bender in the French Quarter (New Orleans). Either way when word gets out that a celeb. is in town to pick up their welfare check the local media is quick to fawn.  It is against that backdrop that when a heavyweight reporter like Karen Nelson is assigned to write a story about Hugh Jackman filming a few taxpayer funded movie scenes at Michoud, something snapped inside and a twitter poll was born:

Frankly the poll results, nonscientific as they are warmed the cockles of my heart.  Had I been able to vote in the Slabbed poll I would have gone second option but what is clear is the majority of you that took time to vote know exactly what the score is: Continue reading “We have a final!”

Other Voices | Wednesdays Wars: Playing the deficit game

When Ronald Reagan was running for President, one of his most dependable applause lines went like this: “Government is not the solution to the problem, government is the problem.” As soon as Reagan became President, however, he expanded the size of government and increased the deficit.

When George W. Bush became President, he moved to reduce taxes on high-end earners. His Secretary of the Treasury, Paul O’Neill, objected on the grounds that reducing revenue into the treasury would increase the deficit. Vice President Dick Cheney put O’Neill in his place, saying, “Reagan proved deficits don’t matter.”

Taxes were cut. The deficit rose, and O’Neill was soon gone.

Fast-forward to the Obama presidency, and our Republican friends are telling us that not only do deficits matter, they matter more than anything else. What they are really saying is that when they are in charge, they don’t want talk of deficits to constrain their actions (taxes, defense spending, credit card wars). But when Democrats are in charge, all spending must be viewed through the lens of its impact on … The Deficit. Continue Reading……………….

Economic Monday: Let’s see how scapegoating mexicans is working out

Simplistic solutions to complex problems rarely lead to good results:

Farmers strain to hire American labor in place of mexican migrant labor. File that one under no good deed goes unpunished as faux conservatives such as Michelle Bachmann actually take pride in f&cking up the 1% of the workforce that was actually working and producing a positive contribution to our economy.  I’ll add I am hearing stories about local construction companies paying their American workers less than the Hispanics they replaced.  This means the relationship of wage rates to productivity is alive and well folks.  Call it the Bachmann boobie prize for ignorant economics.

Meantime the economic data stream continues to indicate that Alabama’s politicians are among the most ignorant in the country on the issue as this snippet from an October Bloomberg Op-Ed indicates:

Due to what one commercial landscaper called Alabama’s “negative atmosphere,” legal Hispanic residents are leaving the state, creating shortages of workers in construction and agriculture. As Bloomberg News reported in June, the post-tornado reconstruction of Tuscaloosa has been hindered by a lack of skilled labor, partly because, after the law was passed, Hispanic tradesmen began leaving the state. Meantime, during the recent harvest, tomatoes and other crops were left rotting in north Alabama’s fields.

While political/economic shills and their media lackeys tell you how great black Friday was lest we forget Q3 GDP was revised down 20% less than a month after the same political/economic shills trumpeted the initial Q3 GDP figure as proof the tide had turned. I’ll note even the Toolman questioned the stuffed shirt ivory tower Tulane economist a bit harder this morning as people seem to be catching on to the puff and quietly revise economic activity down game, even the Toolman himself. Continue reading “Economic Monday: Let’s see how scapegoating mexicans is working out”

Rebranding the Democrats: Ditch Obama and get behind Elizabeth Warren.

Late last week Times Picayune pundit Stephanie Grace wrote a column on the call to rebrand the Louisiana democrats who are now on life support giving a local flavor to trend toward the southern states once again chipping in solely with one political party.  I thought of it when I saw the name Elizabeth Warren pop up in the news cycle in the aftermath of President Obama’s online conversation at LinkedIn yesterday.

Anyone that has paid attention to the oversight accorded to George Bush’s last major official act in the financial bailout known as TARP well knows the name Elizabeth Warren.  She was born a southern girl to a middle class family in Oklahoma before making good, landing more recently as the chairwoman of the Congressional Oversight Committee for the bailout.  She simply took no prisoners and tackled her job in a nonpartisan way that made her a folks hero of sorts to the ordinary people who paid attention to her work. Following is an exchange with Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner that illustrates that point:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pz7ruJw6byQ

I say this because Ms Warren was the logical choice to head the new consumer protection bureau at the Department of Treasury but President Obama was sold out before he arrived in the oval office so that job went to someone else.  I’ve often joked the voters are electing republicans to Congress to send President Obama some much-needed help because he acts mostly like a republican and to a certain extent it is true. Obama had the Bush-era tax cuts expire on his watch and he renewed them almost as a matter of routine before he began to clamor to raise tax rates on the wealthy.  To me it comes across as the height of duplicity. Continue reading “Rebranding the Democrats: Ditch Obama and get behind Elizabeth Warren.”

Does John Fleming represent you? Does he “look” like you? Does he identify with you?

Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.

Folks I’ve prepared tax returns since the late 1980’s and worked as a CPA for small businesses both larger and smaller than Louisiana Representative John Flemming’s fast food empire. Back in the 1990s when tax rates were higher 6 figures folks like John absolutely paid more in taxes. Our budget was balanced and the economy was booming.

It is not that Republicans like Fleming are clueless that is scary as plenty of politicians are dumber than posts, even those that manage to run their own businesses. It is that politicians like Fleming are willing to take uncalculated and indeed reckless chances with the economy just so they won’t have to pay more for the mess they created that scares me. Continue reading “Does John Fleming represent you? Does he “look” like you? Does he identify with you?”

Next time you hear some clueless fluffer talking jobs and employment on the local news…….

I’ve found most market and economic “experts” are like parrots, once they get the story down all faithfully repeat the party line without a second thought. I’ve always found the ivory tower set and their enablers in the media to be particularly out of touch with reality. Three recent posts from the daily bail tell the true story of the employment picture:

CHART – Just 58% Of Americans Over 16 Have A Job – Folks this is the lowest that number has been since 1983, which those old enough to remember was a brutal year economically.

CHART – Food Stamp Use Jumps To Record 46 Million Americans – 15% Of U.S. Population (1970 To 2011) – Don’t let hate mongers like Joe Labruzzo fool you, the vast majority of food stamp recipients are elderly and/or households with children. The jump is related to the first link IMHO.

Follow the money on Food Stamps yields this: Continue reading “Next time you hear some clueless fluffer talking jobs and employment on the local news…….”

Monday Music: Geithner reportedly still looking for the license plate number of the truck that just ran his ass over but football season is soon…..

And the headline of the day from Yahoo Finance is: Shades of 2008: World Markets on Edge Ahead of Monday’s U.S. Open. ~ One silver lining is that gas will become cheaper at the pump.

We have a reader request for Monday Music and it is a good choice.  Dedicated to Tim Geithner who never met a Wall Street exec he failed to pay a taxpayer-funded bonus to under the ruse of contract sanctity. FYYFF!

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