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Ear to the Ground

Krugman Says Obama Is ‘Clueless’ About Outrageous Bonuses

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Posted on Feb 10, 2010
Krugman
Wikimedia Commons / Prolineserver

There are few things, we imagine, that could elicit a heartfelt OMG (make that O.M.G., rather) from certified economics whiz and evident adult Paul Krugman, but President Barack Obama’s latest take on the egregious and profane bonuses of Wall Street executives has clearly tripped that wire in Krugman’s mind.  —KA

“The Conscience of a Liberal” in The New York Times:

Oh. My. God.

First of all, to my knowledge, irresponsible behavior by baseball players hasn’t brought the world economy to the brink of collapse and cost millions of innocent Americans their jobs and/or houses.

And more specifically, not only has the financial industry has been bailed out with taxpayer commitments; it continues to rely on a taxpayer backstop for its stability.

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, February 12, 2010 at 4:15 pm Link to this comment

TAO Walker,

That explains alot and helps me interpret your posts.

Our current forms of leadership often prove to be the judas goats of human society.  All is cinema designed to get the herd to go one way or another.

Report this

By jonathonk99, February 12, 2010 at 3:03 pm Link to this comment

This isn’t spam damn-it.  It’s about taking back democracy somehow if there’s
still a chance.  I heard about these two websites.  one is for calling for a
constitutional convention to create a new amendment.  the other is for passing
the fair elections act.  i would suggest endorsing both but it’s up to you. i suggest
we do more than leave comments on truth dig.  that’s all.

A) callaconvention.org

B) fixcongressfirst.org

Report this

By TAO Walker, February 12, 2010 at 2:22 pm Link to this comment

This Old Savage frequently emphasizes the CON, in terms referential-to the structure and operations of the “civilization” CONtraption (It’d be as accurate to stress TRAP in that word, too.), to point-up the entirely fraudulent nature of the thing in both the motives and the methods of those who got it up-and-running here….for hidden (from the patsies, anyhow) purposes having absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with its ‘advertising.’  It’d be like those owner/operators of the massive industrial-strength system for turning yearlings into obesity-burgers claiming they’re doing so only to “improve” the miserable half-lives of cattle. 

Of course there might be some among the Human livestock these days so degraded theirownselfs that they’d buy-into such bullshit.  No Angus or Hereford would be so easily fooled, though.

That’s why us surviving free wild Peoples are not so favorably impressed by those among our tame Sisters and Brothers who advocate-for CONventionally institutionalized responses to their dire predicament that might, at-best, only render the ‘process’ (of being ‘rendered’ into ‘god’ fodder) a little more “humane.”  Then there’s the fact their tormentors really aren’t even after the actual carcasses, anyway.  It’s the fear and misery and pain and CONfusion, the hate and anger and self-righteousness and grief of terrified feed-lot inmates clinging desperately to their flesh-encased ID-entities, that those disembodied retro-viral wannabe parasites actually feed (and fatten) on….never even suspecting they might theirownselfs be the subjects of some other fools’ similarly ‘self’-centered designs.

So it seems in-keeping with out attempts to remind the captives there’s another WAY, to also call the great CON to their attention every chance we get.

HokaHey!

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By ardee, February 12, 2010 at 7:12 am Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, February 12 at 1:31 am

I would assure you that I respect your right to an opinion, whether or not I agree with said opinion. We both display a passion for the future of this nation and we demonstrate that perhaps unwisely at times. I think we both intensely abhor phonies and haters, which leads us directly to the abyss at times.

I will, of course, reserve the right to comment upon your views and positions, sometimes in the negative sadly, but those comments will never touch you as a person, hopefully.

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By Inherit The Wind, February 11, 2010 at 9:31 pm Link to this comment

ardee, February 11 at 7:58 am #

“I don’t think Obama is stupid or corrupt. I think he is naive and knows far less about Wall Street than he realizes and is ignorantly deferring to people who rather than “expertise” have an agenda.”

I think loyalty can be a two edged sword at times, ITW displaying the sharpened edge of destructive loyalty. For a man who is “naive” Obama had no trouble accepting tens of millions from Wall Street, had less trouble filling his administration with those who owe allegiance, not to the nation, but to the financial community from whence they came and to which they owe everything.

I think Obama is many things, intelligent and inexperienced, centrist and certainly not socialist, subservient and obedient to those who provide the money to fuel Democratic Party campaigns, and worst of all, unable to present a clear path or real leadership.
*******************************************

Ardee:  in the bolded line you’ve said what I’ve tried to say, in a nutshell, and better than I have. This is despite the other comments about my posting (I don’t take your criticisms personally)  and despite the other posters’ usual attacks on me.

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Ouroborus's avatar

By Ouroborus, February 11, 2010 at 7:04 pm Link to this comment

Frederick Douglass: Find out just what any people will
quietly submit to
and you have found out the exact measure of injustice
and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these
will continue till they are resisted with either
words or blows, or with both.

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, February 11, 2010 at 6:28 pm Link to this comment

TAO Walker,

In the many years that I’ve read your posts I would like to know the significance of your CON CONotation.

The surviving free wild Peoples has a messanger with a keyboard in you.  I have broadened my perspective by you sharing your insights in your posts.

The residents of turtle island need to find a better way.

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By TAO Walker, February 11, 2010 at 2:08 pm Link to this comment

(L)iecatcher defeats his own premise in citing the Incas and the Mayas.  The descendants of both “civilizations” are with us today only because some of their ancestors were alert and smart enough to get out of those two peculiarly blood-thirsty versions of the death-dealing CONtraption before ‘the roof fell in.’  It might be wise, as well, to take into account the fact those definitions of “civilization” cited below were CONcocted entirely by domesticated people.

When some completely unbiased observers of the “process” (and its “products”) show-up here and rave about what an unmitigated boon these are to All-concerned, us surviving free wild Peoples will listen respectfully to their ‘case.’  Meantime, all we’ve got to go on at-present, besides our own long-time experience with the shitty-end of that shtick, are the hardly disinterested claims of the damned thing’s inmates….our Stockholm-syndromed tame Sisters and Brothers

These days, of course, there’s a whole lot of complaining (about its degenerative “unintended side-effects” on all those “individual” half-lives) beginning to drown-out the cliche-ridden hoorah of even its most rabidly enthusiastic cheer-leaders.  It is in response to these laments, featured prominently in both contributor and commenter content here on this site (for just one tiny example in a much larger virtual universe), that this Old Indian offers some observations and suggestions from a point-of-view not rigidly circumscribed by “civilization”-al orthodoxy.

Anybody is of course completely free to take these for whatever they’re ‘worth’ to them.

HokaHey!

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By truedigger3, February 11, 2010 at 1:16 pm Link to this comment

Many good points were expressed by P.T., abdo, ardee, the beerdoctor and ggh.

ITW, when will the time come for you to remove those partisan blinders and see the light and what is REALLY going on around you.
You are a case study in fanatic partisanship, persistent denial and wishful thinking.

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By ggh, February 11, 2010 at 7:42 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Krugman say Obama doesn’t have a clue about the bonuses. Well partly true, mostly because Mr Krugman only went partway - Obama doesn’t have aclue period.
Obama is a natural born campaigner - period. If he isn’t in campaign mode you might as well throw the switch and save the electricity.
When he first appeared I heard “black kid who grew up in Kansas with a sick single mom ...yadayadayada”. Well some of that was true - but he also had rich grandparents ( grammy was avice president of a big bank and gramps ran a big store). He knows as much about being a poor black as I do - well maybe his feeling were hurt sometime but most of his pictures look like a pretty pampered rich kid.
Sorry to the Obama fans, but if you had looked a little deeper you would be about half as surprised that my classmates run the fed,treasury,etc ( scholarship kid here - yeh I didn’t care much for the Ivy crowd as you can guess). Obama is about as familiar with 99% of Americans as almost any rich kid would be - and about as sympathic too.

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Ouroborus's avatar

By Ouroborus, February 11, 2010 at 6:28 am Link to this comment

Who cares what Krugman says; he’s playing in the
conventional sandbox, not mine.
The powers that be are not paying much attention to
“us” and have moved very quickly recently to
consolidate their power. Power is the game; money is
only a convenient result of power. The economy is
solidly 2 tiered (has been for some time).
”Their” economy has little to do with us anymore.
The sense of disenfranchisement is no longer a vague
feeling, but a tangible reality.
This (our) empire has already fallen; but the fall is
not recognizable because the power structure is still
in place and control; where it will remain regardless
of what happens to “us”. It’s 1984 on steroids.
The fall/fail has happened to us (not the power
elite) and our survival is dependent/incumbent on us
going back to community. Without community we’re
quite literally doomed to a form of serfdom.
TAO Walker is the only TD poster who actually gets
the depth and breadth of our present reality. 
Worth mentioning is the presence of a compliant and
impotent population lacking a “true” education and
devoid of any critical thinking skills. With a
healthy dose of denial, one has a powerful if not
deadly combination of ingredients for an easily
dominated society.

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By liecatcher, February 11, 2010 at 6:18 am Link to this comment

TO: thebeerdoctor, February 11 at 9:09 am

AMEN BRO ! ! !

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thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, February 11, 2010 at 5:09 am Link to this comment

A day later. on this lively thread, I notice that many attack Krugman for his “clueless” remark. That is just his opinion. But what is not are the facts of what President Obama actually said.
Strangely, like many of their right wing brethren, “progressives” on this site have bought into the fraudulent consumerist concept that even factual truth has become a purchase choice (“we report, you decide”). So many continue to delude themselves into believing that POTUS, or any other of the pageantry heads of the corporation government, actually have some kind of empathy with ordinary citizens.
Totally bankrupt concepts continue to destroy. President Obama. in his own words, does not begrudge that so-called free market system where “savvy businessmen” are to be honored for being clever enough to break the banking system. He excuses the inequitable distribution created by excessive pay bonuses. by pointing out that some Major League Baseball players get paid even more. Which I guess So Bright Barry has no problem with, with their tax subsidized stadiums, and anti-monopoly law exemption.

So the “clueless” comment is beside the point. President Obama through words and actions (and mostly by actions) reveals where he stands:
1. Free Market capitalism is good. if not sacred.
2. Killing other human beings for gasoline is valid.
3. The Insurance and Pharmaceutical Industries have a right to make a profit off of human suffering.
4. War is just dandy, provided it is the right war(s).
5. The U.S. needs to build a new generation of nuclear power plants. The President has said so and the former governor of Alaska agrees.
6. Israel can do no wrong, while Iran can’t do anything right.
7. The terrorist war for gasoline requires military spending that will increase and never cease. The federal administration will lament this of course, but expenditures will continue, no matter who sits in that American Idol Oval Office.
8. NO WE CAN’T has already become the re-branding. As they say in the mob: what ya gonna do?

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By ardee, February 11, 2010 at 3:58 am Link to this comment

“I don’t think Obama is stupid or corrupt. I think he is naive and knows far less about Wall Street than he realizes and is ignorantly deferring to people who rather than “expertise” have an agenda.”

I think loyalty can be a two edged sword at times, ITW displaying the sharpened edge of destructive loyalty. For a man who is “naive” Obama had no trouble accepting tens of millions from Wall Street, had less trouble filling his administration with those who owe allegiance, not to the nation, but to the financial community from whence they came and to which they owe everything.

I think Obama is many things, intelligent and inexperienced, centrist and certainly not socialist, subservient and obedient to those who provide the money to fuel Democratic Party campaigns, and worst of all, unable to present a clear path or real leadership.

Report this

By C.Curtis.Dillon, February 11, 2010 at 3:03 am Link to this comment

TAOwalker is right in that we have forgotten our humanity and compassion.  This is a worldwide problem but is strongly manifest in the USofA.  How can we live as a society where each of us strives to bury everyone else in a headlong rush to “make it”?  We are all on this rock together and will live or die as one.  It always amazed me to see all the greed and self interest on the south end of Manhattan while not more than a few miles away was some of the worst poverty imaginable in Harlem and the South Bronx.  All over America we have these bastions of extreme wealth surrounded by such suffering.  But those with money just darken their limo windows and live in this fairy tale land that ignores the true injustice they have created.  Is it really so important that they have the most expensive of everything?  Is it really a measure of their worth as human beings?  I think not.  Mother Teresa was worth a million of these greedy bastards.  So, I would agree with TAOwalker that we need to discover (from our native brothers it would appear) the idea that we must help each other survive on this rock or it will be the end of us.  Community is far more important than that brand new Ferrari or a bigger airplane.  Supporting the weakest and the most vulnerable is much more a measure of us as humans than how many toys we accumulate.  I’m not impressed by our GDP or who has how much money ... I’m impressed about how we take care of each other.  And we are failing miserably at this and it is perhaps the most obvious indication of our pending demise.

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By abdo, February 11, 2010 at 12:21 am Link to this comment

What mr. Obama said exactly , is less important. More important is, the
deeds of Paulson , Tim G, Summers and Bernanke et.al.. The treasury
‘deciders’  distributed $ tax like monopoly money and to the same
people who played with the world assets in a mean and cynical game of
monopoly.  These wall streeter “WS” , in my book are rubbers how runs
massive rings under the name of financial Capitalism. The WS finance
their fellow Industrialist how dismantle their means of production and
send it to sweat shops allover the glob. In the mean time skilled
workers become mail order operators, fast food flippers etc. and home
owners lose their homes and moves to cheap old mobile home in parks
where they rent a pad.  Of course we should not forget the lawmaker
who bless the monopoly rings with their approval for a price. And the
economy is recovering.

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By Inherit The Wind, February 10, 2010 at 10:30 pm Link to this comment

So Paul Krugman woke up with a hangover and this article was the result.  Not his best analysis.

I don’t think Obama is stupid or corrupt. I think he is naive and knows far less about Wall Street than he realizes and is ignorantly deferring to people who rather than “expertise” have an agenda.

We are NOT “doomed” any more now than we were under Bush&Co;.  But we certainly still are in trouble, serious trouble.

The whole collapse of the financial system is not simple. There are a few simple underlying causes, but the whole thing is more like a web the size of “The Matrix” than a simple thing, with clever, pat, glib “solutions” that sound great on a bumper sticker.  Like Shakespeare saying “First, kill all the lawyers.”  Sounds great over cocktails, but, in reality, is INCREDIBLY stupid.

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By P. T., February 10, 2010 at 9:12 pm Link to this comment

Obama thinks the corporate rich are more critical than his base to his reelection.

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By jonathonk99, February 10, 2010 at 9:11 pm Link to this comment

Let us not dig harshly.  Perhaps the case could be that Obama has an exceptional
sense of humor???  That kidder!!!  He’s using Bush tactics now.  A smile and a joke
always alleviates the tension. 

“We’re doomed!!!”  - The Krugster

Speak for yourself

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, February 10, 2010 at 5:03 pm Link to this comment

Krugman is simply instigating Obama over this in an attempt to get him to act.

I hope Obama acts decisively and closes the loophole which enables million dollar plus bonuses for executives of companies who trade public stock.

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By liecatcher, February 10, 2010 at 5:02 pm Link to this comment

KRUGMAN SAYS OBAMA IS ‘CLUELESS’ ABOUT OUTRAGEOUS
BONUSES

Krugman is a paid shill & Nobel Prize winning expert
on fecal vomiting;
end of that story.

Finally bloggers we’ve been given an epiphany & I’ve
been set free.
The disease is civilization & the cure for us may be
the same as
it was for the Mayans or the Incas .
I tried teaching health education, K-12, for too many
years before
I gave up not realizing the impossible task that I
undertook.
Ironically, without really understanding the problem,
I considered
joining several communes to be with kindred spirits,
and live off the
land. MOTHER EARTH NEWS, PREVENTION , ORGANIC
GARDENING
were some of the magazines that led me in that
direction. Fortunately
I avoided the Jim Jones & similar exploitative
communes. The Amish
were too strict , & so I’ve just coped with the
disease until the present time.
Notice that none of the definitions listed below
include or explain our
current state of decline & disintegration. The
billion plus people being
starved to death around the world already know what
it means.

Definitions of civilization:

noun:  a society in an advanced state of social
development
(e.g., with complex legal and political and religious
organizations)
Example: “The people slowly progressed from barbarism
to civilization”
noun:  the social process whereby societies achieve
civilization
noun:  the quality of excellence in thought and
manners and taste
Example: “He is remembered for his generosity and
civilization”
noun:  a particular society at a particular time and
place
Example: “Early Mayan civilization”

civ·i·li·za·tion (sv-l-zshn)
n.
1. An advanced state of intellectual, cultural, and
material development in human society,
marked by progress in the arts and sciences, the
extensive use of record-keeping,
including writing, and the appearance of complex
political and social institutions.
2. The type of culture and society developed by a
particular nation or region or in a
particular epoch: Mayan civilization; the
civilization of ancient Rome.
3. The act or process of civilizing or reaching a
civilized state.
4. Cultural or intellectual refinement; good taste.
5. Modern society with its conveniences: returned to
civilization after camping in the mountains.

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By gerard, February 10, 2010 at 5:01 pm Link to this comment

Oh, Taowalker:  You are really too much!  Let’s call it quits.  I did suggest it once, then succumbed again.  But you misconstrue me and I am not going to get into a tit-for-tat.

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By Amon Drool, February 10, 2010 at 4:48 pm Link to this comment

virginia… gerard’s a big girl.  she can handle herself.  no need for u to try to protect her or to cheerlead for her.  i can’t imagine her sticking around this site very long..the one-upmanship around here gets to be a bit much..and that’s not her game

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By jonathonk99, February 10, 2010 at 4:34 pm Link to this comment

Obama is a bit schizophrenic and whatever he is taking (advice from Wall Street) is
rotting his mind.

I don’t understand how one minute President O can pretend to hold a grudge
against Wall Street with all the rhetoric about Glass-Steagall needing to be
repaired, and then simultaneously go make some ludicrous and air-headed
remark about baseball.

It just goes to show that the united consensus on Capitol Hill is that Americans are
either too stupid, feeble, or distracted to make a noise.

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By TAO Walker, February 10, 2010 at 4:31 pm Link to this comment

Maybe Virginia777 will tell us whose purposes are being served by trying to turn discussions here into popularity CONtests.  This Old Man has no ‘personal’ bone whatsoever to pick with her or gerard, whose ‘wisdom’ seems pretty much of the CONventional kind….at least as it’s been in-evidence here so-far.

  If Virginia777 can point to anything even remotely resembling a “gripe,” in this Person’s responses to gerard’s or anybody else’s comments, she’s free to do it.  Perhaps she hasn’t chose her own words as carefully as she might, though.

That is, by-the-way, just an observation….not an indictment.

HokaHey!

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Virginia777's avatar

By Virginia777, February 10, 2010 at 4:11 pm Link to this comment

Lay off gerard, Tao Walker. She is the best Truthdig commentator, my favorite anyway. She is very, very wise. Keep your personal gripes offline.

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By TAO Walker, February 10, 2010 at 4:03 pm Link to this comment

What gerard neglects to mention in her latest below is that the prescription she is now “100% for” is the very same one she has several times said won’t ‘work’ because it couldn’t be ‘accessed’ by her own and far too many of her fella-‘n’-gal “individual” ‘selfs’.  It is, besides, the very same Medicine this Old Indian has been recommending (for what ails our tame Sisters and Brothers), “free of charge” and in the same ‘words’, for over three years just on this site….several times on ‘threads’ she was also posting-on, and in direct response to similar requests she was making at the time.

So gerard’s disingenuous attempt here to claim ‘credit’ for finally prying it out of this Person, clever as it is phrased, does her no credit.  Neither does her pointed insinuation that there must be other diagnoses and prescriptions equally specific and responsive to the ‘case’....while refraining from proposing any examples of either for some side-by-side comparison. 

Granted The Tiyoshpaye Way is a ‘pill’ difficult (even bitter) for die-hard allamerican “individual”-ists to swallow.  Chances are many of ‘em just won’t be able to choke-it-down. 

Frankly, that’s no concern of us surviving free wild Natives.

HokaHey!

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screamingpalm's avatar

By screamingpalm, February 10, 2010 at 3:20 pm Link to this comment

Well said as usual Samson, that was my take exactly. Surely Krugman can’t be so naive to believe that Obama is genuniely “clueless”.

“Instead of groaning and criticizing, let’s have some diagnosis of the disease and a suggestion for possible cures.”

“Paul Krugman is clueless here and his Obama-bashing is petty and tiresome.”

You have to start somewhere, and as is evident, there are people that will continue to put there hands over their ears and shout “blah blah blah I’m not listening- Obama’s my hero”.

Solutions? Cures? They have been offered to those who will accept them and stop childish attempts to stiffle dissent. Break the vicious cycle of the two-party system and support independent candidates.

“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” -Albert Einstein (attributed)

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, February 10, 2010 at 3:15 pm Link to this comment

I was watching the Animal planet channel the other night about pigs, especially feral pigs which were loose on Manhattan Island shortly after settlement.

Wall street is named after the wall the settlers erected to keep the feral pigs from overwhelming the settlers and eating all their stores.

I guess they never left.

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By gerard, February 10, 2010 at 3:06 pm Link to this comment

NOTICE:  I am NOT paying Taowalker to give me publicity on TD comment lines.  He is doing it free of charge. I want to take this opportunity to thank him for answering my request by spelling out in a little more detail what he has been advocating:
...“The Beauty Way….Genuine Organic Human Community is about as close as you can get to it in English,” he says:  “(P)eople can help by getting together where they actually live-and breathe every Day to help each other in ordinary everyday ways.  This will free-up some of the precious Personal attention they’d best start ‘paying’ (along with their affectionate respect) to our Mother Earth and All Our Relations ...”  I’m 100% for it. It’s certainly one way ... but perhaps not the only way?

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Virginia777's avatar

By Virginia777, February 10, 2010 at 3:05 pm Link to this comment

“Instead of groaning and criticizing, let’s have some diagnosis of the disease and a suggestion for possible cures.  Tell people how they can help.” - Exactly, gerard!

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Virginia777's avatar

By Virginia777, February 10, 2010 at 3:04 pm Link to this comment

Paul Krugman is clueless here and his Obama-bashing is petty and tiresome.

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G.Anderson's avatar

By G.Anderson, February 10, 2010 at 2:56 pm Link to this comment

yes, Paul we are doomed.

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Samson's avatar

By Samson, February 10, 2010 at 2:35 pm Link to this comment

OpenSecrets.org has compiled a list of top contributors by organization they belong to.

http://www.opensecrets.org/pres08/contrib.php?cid=N00009638&cycle=2008

2.  Goldman Sachs $994,795
6.  Citigroup     $701,290
7.  JP Morgan     $695,132
17. Morgan Stanley $514,881

Read that list and you have no problems understanding this article. 

Of course Obama doesn’t have any problems with the bonuses for the JP Morgan or Goldman Sachs CEO’s.  Not only has he been well paid to be their protector already, but he is certainly calling them back up right now asking for money for the 2010 elections.

The only misleading thing in this piece is Krugman calling Obama ‘clueless’.  Obama is not clueless, he’s just doing what he’s paid to do.  The Democrats keep this misleading propaganda going that simply fails to acknowledge Obama’s true nature. They’d rather say he’s “clueless” than to admit he’s openly Wall Street’s man in the White House.

PS ... see the story this weekend about how Wall Street is starting to shift its money back to the Republicans to really understand the bootlicking going on in that interview.  And don’t forget Obama is calling right now to get cash for the 2010 elections.

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By FRTothus, February 10, 2010 at 2:29 pm Link to this comment

That’s a harsh headline,

“‘Clueless’ About Outrageous Bonuses”

What happens when the exploitation is institutionalized?  What happens when it hardly matters who is in this or that office?  They wouldn’t let us have the likes of Kucinich, but I wouldn’t wonder if he’d be as powerless, given the bully pulpit. Maybe not.
If Obama started making trouble by being populist, they’d call him a demogouge or a Hitler or something, all kinds of scary names.  Obama’s clear on one thing.  A smart man would know his life was in danger, and learn to toe the line, if he knew what was good for him and his family. 

I suspect that all our lives are worth to them are the taxes we continue to pay, and the votes they can garner to keep them at the helm of the public trough, both current and expected futures market.  Regardless, it’s a sorry ship of state, and it’s all been bought and sold. Someone somewhere, in some market, has an expected financial return on our lives and the revenue in fees and products and taxes, and perhaps in young men in uniform if the (foreign or domestic) natives prove recalcitrant, or locked up with Wakenhut prison labor if they resist recruitment.

The hour, it is getting late.

“America’s punitive and reactive response to crime is an integral part of the new social Darwinism, the criminal justice counterpart of an increasingly harsh attack on living standards and social supports, especially for the poor ... America [is] a society in which a permanent state of social disintegration is held in check only by the creation of a swollen apparatus of confinement and control that has no counterpart in our own history or in any other industrial democracy.”
(Elliott Currie)

“The media serve the interests of state and corporate power, which are closely interlinked, framing their reporting and analysis in a manner supportive of established privilege and limiting debate and discussion accordingly.”
(Noam Chomsky)

“[The ruling elites] know who their enemies are, and their enemies are the people, the people at home and the people abroad. Their enemies are anybody who wants more social justice, anybody who wants to use the surplus value of society for social needs rather than for individual class greed, that’s their enemy.”
(Michael Parenti)

“Political discussion in the United States is usually restricted to the moderate to conservative range that precludes discussion of class conflict. If “class warfare” is mentioned, it is because a conservative wants to suggest that certain matters should be kept off-limits in American political discussion”
(Steve Brouwer)

“To live in the process is absolutely not to notice it—please try to believe me—unless one has a much greater degree of political awareness, acuity, than most of us ever had occasion to develop. Each step was so small, so inconsequential, so well explained or, on occasion, regretted.
Believe me this is true. Each act, each occasion is worse than the last, but only a little worse. You wait for the next and the next. You wait for one shocking occasion, thinking that others, when such a shock comes, will join you in resisting somehow.

Suddenly it all comes down, all at once. You see what you are, what you have done, or, more accurately, what you haven’t done (for that was all that was required of most of us: that we did nothing) ... You remember everything now, and your heart breaks. Too late. You are compromised beyond repair.”
(German professor after World War II describing the rise of Nazism to a journalist)

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By truedigger3, February 10, 2010 at 1:59 pm Link to this comment

Obama has put Wall St. and big money corporations above anything else, above the economy and above the middle class and that is his assigned role to play.
The next three years will be full of painful surprises for the middle class, starting with “reforming” Social Security and Medicare!.
So, please don’t play dumb and call him clueless. He knows exactly what he is doing. He will be doing stuff that W Bush or any other Republican president would have not dared to do.
And why not?! He has the backing of the so called progressives.

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By TAO Walker, February 10, 2010 at 1:54 pm Link to this comment

(G)erard, along with many others (by inference, at-least) here and all over the place, asks for an accurate “diagnosis of the disease,” and a specific prescription “for possible cures.”  This Old Indian has been here awhile now offering both, but she (for one) has rejected them out-of-hand because the diagnosis doesn’t fit with her cherished preCONceptions, and the recommended Medicine is not even remotely like her own make-believe drug-of-choice.  (G)erard is hardly alone in her ‘sentiments,’ however.  They’re probably shared by even the Paul Krugmans of her virtual world-o’hurt.  So this Old Man hopes she won’t feel she’s being singled-out here.

Even so, here it is again….just for The Record.  “Civilization” itself ‘presents’ here in the Natural Living Arrangement of our Mother Earth as a ‘disease’ CONdition.  Domesticated Humans, in their “individual”-ized state, are all infected with it, and most are active propagators.  The specific remedy for this otherwise inevitably fatal sickness is what some of us surviving free wild Natives here on Turtle Island call The Tiyoshpaye Way, and some call The Beauty Way….Genuine Organic Human Community is about as close as you can get to it in English.

“(P)eople can help” by getting together where they actually live-and breathe every Day to help each other in ordinary everyday ways.  This will free-up some of the precious Personal attention they’d best start ‘paying’ (along with their affectionate respect) to our Mother Earth and All Our Relations, apart from whom they are all just so much shit-out-of-luck….which is exactly what everybody trapped in the damned device’s ‘operating system’ (the eCONomy) is going to end-up being anyhow.

It goes without saying gerard and anybody ‘else’ is completely at-liberty to keep dosing their “individual” ‘self’ with whatever makes ‘em “happy.”  There is no institutional ‘structure’ of any kind (unlike the massive machinery in-place to spread the ‘industrial disease’) that can force our Medicine down unwilling ‘throats.’     

AS practitioners of Taoist medicine learned long ago, however, there are no incurable sicknesses….only incurable people.

HokaHey!

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By Vic Anderson, February 10, 2010 at 1:53 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Back to the 0bamanible double aughts and we’re d00med! If Paul Krugman deigns
it; it must be so!!

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By liecatcher, February 10, 2010 at 1:44 pm Link to this comment

KRUGMAN SAYS OBAMA IS ‘CLUELESS’ ABOUT OUTRAGEOUS
BONUSES


Paul Krugman & Robert Reich have assumed almost
identical roles of calling attention to the short
comings of the present administration.
The context is that other articles appear in which
Bush3 seems to be scolding the banksters. It’s just
more confusion, misinformation, disinformation & pure
bovine excrement, which a Nobel Prize adds credence
to but the odor wins out.

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By Hammond Eggs, February 10, 2010 at 12:54 pm Link to this comment

When the history of the destruction of the USA middle class is written, it will be Obama who will justifiably come off as the greatest villain, who will be despised above even Bush and Cheney.  You won’t be able to have an omelette tomorrow because Obama has already sucked every egg on the face of the earth.

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By Hank from Nebraska, February 10, 2010 at 12:18 pm Link to this comment

Do we need any more evidence that the Obama administration is headed for an utter failure?  How can anyone still praise multi-million dollar bonuses, no matter what the context!  Sarah Palin couldn’t make this dumb a statement!

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By Big B, February 10, 2010 at 11:54 am Link to this comment

I have echoed Krugman’s statement since Barry took office. I have always felt that he is either not as smart as we think he is, or he is as evil as his predessor.

All the answers you need to figure out Barry’s leadership style can be found in the money trail that landed him the white house.

We all are a reflection of the people (or scumbags) that we surround ourselves with.

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By gerard, February 10, 2010 at 11:47 am Link to this comment

Paul Krugman, you have “access” which millions of us proles down here at the bottom have not. Which
“higher ups” are you able to talk to, and are you working with any high level groups to stop the bleeding down here?  Talk about runaway trains! Do they have any clue as to how the vast majority of people are left out because of their greed and foolishness?  Do they care?  If not, why not?
  Instead of groaning and criticizing, let’s have some diagnosis of the disease and a suggestion for possible cures.  Tell people how they can help.

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thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, February 10, 2010 at 11:19 am Link to this comment

President Obama’s latest remarks most assuredly reveal that the bright (CFL?) light from Illinois is perhaps not the intelligent politician that many thought him to be. Those “guys” he knows, those “very savvy businessmen” who does not begrudge… it is easy to hear the same words being uttered by former President George W. Bush. Only in the case of the ex-president, the baseball shop talk would be a little more authentic, coming from a former owner of the Texas Rangers.

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By GW=MCHammered, February 10, 2010 at 10:51 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Wall Street and CEO Pay: Two Pigs to Flail

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