03 April 2010

The Economic Turning Point

Even FOX and CNBC admit it:

Elephants in uproar

David Frum, excommunicated republican (former GWB 43 speechwriter and head of FrumForum) was on the Colbert Report. Now, Colbert had a lot of fun with Frum, who comes off as very congenial and is obviously intelligent. He also had some astounding things to say.

Colbert started with:

"Sir, what it is like getting fired from a think tank for thinking outside of the tank?"

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There are a number of points Mr. Frum made that I think are correct:

Frum said (7:47 into the video):

"The DNA of this bill traces back to what Mitt Romney did in Massachusetts, and it traces back before that to the Republican alternative to Clinton Care back in 1993 and 1994."

I agree with him: the origins of the individual mandate are REPUBLICAN, from the GOP proposal from 1993-1994 and from Romneycare. In a way, Romney is the intellectual father of a part of Obamacare from 2009-2010. For the republicans to rail against this is hypocritical at best.

Frum wrote on his blog write up "Waterloo" (also quoted by Colbert at 3:08 into the video):

"Conservatives and Republicans suffered their most crushing legislative defeat since the 1960's... We followed the most radical voices in the party and the movement, and they led us to abject and irreversible defeat."

I agree with him. And this point will follow the republicans through 2010 and 2012. Obama will be able to remind the american people thousands of times over the Health Care Reform passed WITHOUT A SINGLE REPUBLICAN VOTE.

(at 6:51 into the video):

"Repeal and Replace is mathematically impossible."

I agree, he is correct. A repeal will not be possible and even high ranking GOP leaders have spent the entire week backtracking on their "Repeal" or "Repeal and Replace" pledge. Yes, folks, daylight is indeed the best disinfectant. Historically, entitlement programs have not been repealed, another support of Wagner's law".

Frum said (05:50 into the video):

"We are facing, as conservatives and Republicans, the largest expansion of government since the New Deal."

I agree, he is correct. Social spending has increased by about 7 2/3% of GDP, comparable with spending during the New Deal, but less than the spending from LBJ's "great society".

Frum also said (4:29 into the video, video quote from 22 March 2010)

"Republicans also originally thought the FOX worked for us, uh, and now we are discovering, we work for FOX."


Frum (06:22 into the video)

"When I first got involved in the conservative world in the late 70s and the early 80s, it was, above all, an intellectual movement. It was a diagnosis of where inflation came from and how to stop it, of why growth in the american economy had slowed down and how to reignite it, of how cities were crumbling and order was breaking down and how to save cities."

I partially agree with him. Sure, the movement started intellectually, as all movements do. But as for the practical application...


Apparently, Michael Steele has problems galore on his hands, with "Lesbibondagegate" dominating the headlines.

Tony Perkins, head of the "Family Research Council", an overwhelmingly christian organization with fundamentalist grassroots, has encouraged republicans to no longer give to the RNC:

Perkins said (2:02 into the video):

"Look, if you can't run a party you certainly can't run a country."

Pretty strong stuff. Now, I doubt that Steele was personally involved in Lesbibondagegate and it may come out in the future that this was even a set-up from within the party to oust him. But either way, it does not reflect well on him.


Meanwhile, President Obama hit back on HCR, which most are calling "HIR" (Health Insurance Reform).

"it's only been a week."

And the jobs report is encouraging:

162,000 new jobs in March, the vast majority of them in the private sector.