In its announcement that credit rating agency Standard and Poor’s (S&P) was cutting its rating on France’s debt for the second time in less than two years, the agency minced no words:
Once the 11th-hour vote to avoid the potential default was passed by the Senate and the House and signed into law by President Obama, key players in the game of fiscal chicken just ended began issuing their justifications and frustrations. That game, variously called “political brinkmanship”, a “temporary fix”, “a temporary ceasefire” and “a political achievement for Obama”, does everything the president wanted while
Within hours of the “brinkmanship” press release by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, major media began to repeat the highly dubious risks outlined by the department without reading carefully exactly what it contained. The headline and opening paragraph were all that the echo chambers needed:
Hoping to put the onus back onto the Senate, the House of Representatives on Friday night passed two amendments to the pending Continuing Resolutions bill: one to repeal the Obamacare tax on medical devices (248-174) and the other to delay implementation of the controversial law for a year (231-192). As they were being passed, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid remained adamant that
Two government reports issued in the last few days show that despite higher tax revenues, thanks to the tax increases signed into law by the president earlier this year, deficits are still sky-high and the national debt continues its inexorable climb into the stratosphere.
Although the deficit for the first eleven months of the 2013 fiscal year was down slightly compared to last year at this time, real progress towards a balanced budget remains elusive. Through August the federal government spent
A vote on a bill to continue government spending offered by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) scheduled for Thursday was abruptly cancelled when it was clear that it would fail. Called a “trick” by some Tea Party conservatives, “hocus-pocus” by Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), and “chicanery” by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Cantor’s bill clearly wouldn’t draw the 218 votes necessary for passage. Especially since some 80 House members have signed a letter drafted by Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) demanding that
Thanks to the efforts of whistleblower Edward Snowden and the reluctant cooperation of the Washington Post, American citizens are now able to see just what their half-trillion dollars have bought them over the last ten years:
Citing an unnamed source from “Team Obama”, CNBC announced that Larry Summers will be named head of the Federal Reserve by President Obama to replace outgoing chairman Ben Bernanke whose term expires on December 31st.
Despite much media conversation about other potential candidates for the position, chief among them Fed Vice Chairman Janet Yellen, Summers always had the inside track. Summers served as
Professor James Hamilton, economics professor at the University of California, San Diego, just published his best estimate of the federal government’s “off-balance-sheet” liabilities and concludes that the real national debt, popularly estimated to be $16.9 trillion, is in fact more than four times larger: $70.086 trillion. This is because of decisions to
The unfunded pension liabilities facing Chicago are only the most recent troubles threatening the Windy City, according to the New York Times. The recent credit downgrade of Chicago’s general obligation bonds by Moody’s, Standard and Poor’s and Fitch just brought the matter to the surface. Crime, corruption and a shrinking population also are beginning to make Chicago look like an out-sized version of Detroit.
According to the city, the four pension plans for its police, teachers, firefighters and office staff, are all dreadfully underfunded to the tune of some
This article was first published at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, July 29th, 2013:
Tuesday’s announcement by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid that he wouldn’t consider anything the House passed that didn’t repeal the sequester “cuts,” followed by Utah Senator Mike Lee’s letter that he and 11 other senators would block any budget that contained spending to implement Obamacare, have set the battles lines for October. So “sequester” and “Obamacare funding” are back in vogue. Like the battles line drawn at Gettysburg, the left and the right are lining up their cannons.
Reid said he has “no interest” in
From the New York Times to Politico.com the president’s speech to students at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois on Wednesday was headline news. More than an hour long, it contained enough platitudes, sound bites and falsehoods to keep pundits busy and away from more about the Benghazi, IRS, NSA surveillance scandals and Obamacare fallout which have caused the president’s poll numbers to plummet. It was time to get out of Dodge and take
Many were surprised at Janet Napolitano’s announcement that she was leaving her position as Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) at the end of August to become President of the University of California. Chosen from more than 300 candidates vying for the position, Napolitano managed to keep her interest in, and her successful bid for, that position from the public until Friday.
She issued the usual departure appreciation statement:
When the Congressional Budget Office’s cost estimate of S. 744 – the Gang of Eight’s controversial immigration bill – was published on Tuesday, there was celebrating on both sides of the issue. Said Senator Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), one of that gang and the original sponsor of the bill:
Simply put, this report is a huge
In the announcement by credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s on Monday that affirmed its AA+ rating of United States sovereign debt while revising upward its outlook from “negative” to “stable,” the agency explained that in the short run there has been some perceptible improvement in the country’s fiscal situation but in the long run
The report from the International Monetary Fund is remarkable in its candor: efforts to bail out Greece were fumbled as the IMF, the European Commission and the European Central Bank all tried to promote their own agendas with little regard for the lowly Greek citizen.
Happily the disclaimer appeared on the front page:
The report from the National Taxpayers Union’s foundation, the NTUF, published on Tuesday, illustrates a massive shift in spending versus cutting that occurred during the 112th Congress from 2010 to 2012. If the trend continues in the current Congress and on into 2014 and beyond, the 112th Congress might just be the
Two writers at The New York Times have embraced the fallacy that cutting government spending is keeping the economy from growing. It is Keynesian claptrap.
Let’s let them rant a little before responding:
At the Koch Brothers’ donors’ strategy meeting at the Renaissance Esmeralda golf resort in Palm Springs, California, last week, the atmosphere was a blend of reality and optimism. The reality was stated in an email from Charles Koch that was sent to potential participants back in January explaining why the meeting was being postponed to April:
Despite November’s disappointing election results, I am convinced that
During his introduction of a bill to save $30 billion from the old food stamp program – now called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) – Senator John Thune (R-S.D.) said that
Since President Obama assumed office, participation in SNAP, which was formerly referred to as food stamps, has increased from 32 million to
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