Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Cruising the Web

Enjoy some of the late-night humor from the past week. The nation's economy is a regular feature.
Leno: President Obama says the credit downgrade should give Americans a renewed sense of urgency? Renewed sense? When was this ever not urgent?

Leno: More fallout from that Standard & Poor's credit downgrading of the U.S.. Today England, France and Germany unfriended us on Facebook.

Conan: A new report says that due to the weak economy, more Americans are cancelling their cable television. All I can say is, good luck trying to live without eight shows about cakes.

Leno: Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner will stay on with President Obama and not join the private sector. Thanks to his economic policies there are no private sector jobs.

Michael Barone writes today about the end of the Midwest model of an economy based on unionized factories. That era has been ending for a while now and it's been a painful transition. All the Democrats have to offer is a switch to large public employees unions.
So what does the president have to offer the Midwest? The idea that the wave of the future is an ever-larger public sector financed by a more or less stagnant private sector looks increasingly absurd. The Midwest's public sector has, as Margaret Thatcher put it, run on "other people's money." Meanwhile, Mr. Obama's trip to the Midwest has been preceded by Texas Gov. Rick Perry's foray into Waterloo, Iowa. Mr. Perry points out that his state, with low taxes and light regulation, has been producing nearly half of America's new jobs. The Texas model may be sweeping the Midwest, not vice versa.
Here's an example of big government run amok: a California legislator is pushing a bill that would mandate that hotel use fitted sheets on beds because only a politician can figure out what is best for hotels to put on their beds. (h/t Hot Air)

One of the sillier criticisms of Perry's jobs record in Texas is to act as if those jobs just magically appeared because the population of Texas was increasing. Paul Krugman has made that argument. Why do you think people have been moving there in the first place? Why are they leaving California? Conn Carroll has fun ridiculing this argument.
Matt [Yglesias] is desperate to have you believe that Americans suddenly stopped wanting to live in California and started wanting to live in Texas. But why did this happen? Couldn't have anything to do with the fact they were offered jobs in Texas, could it?

Kevin Williamson does a good job of looking at the actual numbers to pull apart Krugman's argument that Texas is creating lower-wage jobs. How peculiar that a Nobel-winning economist would ignore the actual numbers when making his hits on a Republican.

Alana Goodman also takes on the argument
that most of the jobs created in Texas are minimum wage jobs. Actually this is true of the nation at large. And the number of minimum wage jobs was decreasing in Texas until 2006 when the minimum wage was increased so many jobs suddenly became classified as minimum wage when they'd been higher before. So if you're going to criticize Perry for his state having an increase in minimum wage jobs, you'd also have to criticize Obama since the trend is true across the country.

Meanwhile Debbie Wasserman Schultz is giving Obama credit for many of the jobs created in Texas.

Joseph Lawler has a more balanced look at how much credit Perry's policies have been responsible for Texas's job growth and to what extent those strengths could be generalizable to other states. The Dallas Fed president has cited tort reform as one of the main reasons for Texas's success. That is certainly a policy that could be enacted nationwide.

Texas blogger, Pesky Truth addresses 17 things that critics are saying about Rick Perry. Most of the criticisms against Perry and Texas are debunked. However, there are still the criticisms of Perry's crony capitalism which, except for the Gardasil controversy, are not addressed.

Every incumbent president who is underwater in the polls facing reelection loves the Truman model to infuse his campaign hope that he'll be able to reenact Truman's come-from-behind 1948 victory. But Barack Obama is no Harry Truman.

Last week Obama compared the criticism he's encountering to that facing Martin Luther King. This week he's saying that he faces worse criticism than Lincoln faced. Though he is correct that politics in our country has been a lot uglier in history than it is today. But we can all imagine what would happen if critics called Obama a gorilla as they did Lincoln.

John Hinderaker has more opprobrium
for Obama's comparison to the criticism he has to endure to what was thrown at Lincoln.
Almost as bad! Lincoln was “the original gorilla,” a sub-human, to the Democrats. It is impossible to imagine the hysteria that would result from any such depiction of Obama. But that was the least of it: the Southern states, in the grip of the Democratic Party, seceded rather than be governed by an anti-slavery President Lincoln. In the North, treasonous Copperhead Democrats bedeviled Lincoln’s administration throughout the Civil War. And a group of rabid Democrat/secessionists eventually assassinated him.

We have remarked before on Obama’s striking ignorance of history, but even he must understand that his claim to be more abused than Lincoln is disgraceful. If a narcissist like Obama were capable of shame, this would be an appropriate time to show it.
Well said.