Thursday, February 11, 2010

America is not Greece!



The other day on Fox Business, Senator Jim Demint (R-SC) was being interviewed and he said that the situtaion in Greece foreshadows what could possibly happen here in the U.S.

Demint's assertion went completely unchallenged by host Brian Sullivan, wno could have easily pointed out a very important distinction: that countries in the eurozone are functionally like states in the United States. They no longer issue currency and, therefore, do not have the ability to simply credit bank accounts like the Federal Government can.

Demint went on to use all the debt terrorist catch phrases such as "unsustainable debt," "drowning in debt," "need to balance the budget and cut spending," etc.

Demint is one of a group of Senators who are pushing for a balanced budget ammendment, which if it passes, would put this country into long-lasting austerity and widespread poverty for generations to come. In fact, America would never recover from that--ever!

The senator also used the Greece sitatuion to point out how workers there are protesting against the layoffs and budget cuts (how dare they complain when their livelihood is threatened!!) that may be imposed under austerity.

He was quick to add that those workers were all "unionized" (his observation) and that we shouldn't waste any time in going after the unions here in our own country lest they start screaming and protesting when his desired, forced spending cuts threaten their livelihoods.

Demint's rant against the unions was a thinly veiled attempt to use junk economic arguments to hide his disdain and hatred of workers and his love of greedy corporations. His design for America is to crush the earnings potential of the working class so that big companies with their lobbyists and fat-cat exectuvies can make even more money, perhaps to then go play golf down in Hilton Head, in his home state of South Carolina.

Senator Demint should know a little bit about income destruction: his state ranks among the lowest in the nation in per capita income. Curioulsy, though, it ranks among the top when it comes to receiving aid from the Federal Gov't: for every dollar that South Carolinians send to Washington, they get more than a dollar back. It's a far better deal than the folks in Michigan. You don't hear the senator complaining about that.

11 comments:

Matt Franko said...

Mike,

Re Fox: Your position is "the counterpoint" to our current situation. The whole world thinks we are "printing money/debasing" and "borrowing from the Chinese". These cable news channels seem to love the point/counter-point type of format, but with everybody in agreement on this, they are going to lose their programming in this regard. I think if you were tasked with taking the counter-point on FoxBusiness, it would not only be correct, BUT IT WOULD MAKE FOR GREAT PROGRAMMING.

See Warren on CNBC this AM, at the end Leisman hinted that they maybe are goint to start this debate over there, (I'm thinking they maybe bring Santelli in, Kudlow, etc...) start a real dust up in an effort to create more interesting programming, etc... FoxBusiness could do the same.

Resp,

Mike Norman said...

Matt

I approached Fox Business's executive V.P on this (he's Neil Cavuto's boss) and pitched the idea, but there wasn't any interest. The more they can speak to their core audience (conservatives, deficit hawks, free market ideologues), that's the direction they're going.

I also had four interviews at CNBC last year, pitching this idea to Susan Krakower (creator of "Mad Money"), Tyler Mathieson and CNBC President Mark Hoffman. No interest as well.

I did heard Leisman say "this is a start in getting your ideas out," which to me meant, they will have Warren back again.

Matt Franko said...

Mike,
This is very discouraging. But kudos to you for taking it that far. For what it's worth I think Neil & Co. made a big mistake, their programming is stale, uninteresting, sycophantic.

If CNBC develops this story line, I will believe that Krakower stole your idea.

Resp,

bubbleRefuge said...

Wow, fascinating topic guys.
What mike is saying makes sense. They don't care about being righteous. I think fox viewers as well as their msnbc analogues tune in for the sole purpose of hearing the same thing over and over and over and over again ad-nauseum. Its an opiate. Wish I was wrong.

I think one path to recognition is by making great investment picks and chronicling those results. We know that fiscal policy creates and destroys aggregate demand and we know that aggregate demand drives GDP which drives the market indices. So keep making those calls Mike and the more and more you are on target the more they will have to give you air time.

But yeah Matt, I dream of the day that Warren or Mike can can wipe their rear-ends with Kudlow and the like. That day is approaching and today it got one step closer.

Mike Norman said...

BR:

Right, that's what they believe. They couldn't care less about being righteous; it's about ratings for them and as long as what they're doing gets ratings, then they're happy and not looking to change.

I can understand this insofar as Fox is concerned because they're a conservative network and have a core audience that believes deeply in these ideals.

However, when it comes to CNBC and MSNBC (and even CNN) I am baffled.

If there is anything the liberals and Democrats are getting trounced on its economic policy. Where the conservatives have a world view: free markets, limited gov't, strong national defense, etc, the liberals collapse when it comes to economic policy because the conservatives always put them on the defensive.

For example, when liberals say that the free market has been a failure for millions and government has the power to change that, many people become uplifted and hopeful. However, that's when conservatives hit them with all the, socialist crap and, "how are you going to pay for it?" To which the liberals respond by saying, "We'll tax the rich." Well, even if middle class and poor people are struggling, they're not for higher taxes either, even if it means those taxes will be imposed on the rich.

So the liberals' arguments for more progressive and proactive governmental policies collapse every time.

You'd think that they'd be seeking a way to explain how they could accomplish these things without always having to resort to the, "We'll tax the rich," line. How about the operational truth about government spending and deficits, for instance?? (Just as Warren presented.)

Clearly there is an opportunity here. Sixty-three million people voted for change and Obama's change message incorporated the idea of broad government involvement for the every man. He has failed. The networks have failed to put forth another view--a view based on fact and reason.

There is a ratings bonanza out there and the network that taps it is going to bury Fox.

Matt Franko said...

JC/Mike,
What really sort of made me a "Mike Norman fan for life" was one time I used to listen to Mikes show on podcast. He had on "Dr" Mark Farber (Dr Gloom Doom). I had been listening to that guy run the US down for years. I was for 10+ years a Barrons subscriber and they used to have him in their annual roundtable and all he did was talk about how the US was going down with debt etc (sort of same as today!). He even to this day is interviewed and feted in the mainstream financial media with this same BS, no one ever challenges him on the merits. In fact just the opposite, they almost get all giddy when he calls in from "Hong Kong" or wherever the f he says he is.

Well Mike has him on and I think the guy said something like "all the US does is buy big screen TVs on their credit cards" in his very nasal germanic accent. Mike had enough right there and tore right into him and cut him off at the knees and I think he kicked him right off his show. This was so gratifying to me...seeing someone in the media call BS on this guy finally. Yes, I think there is a media market for a pro-American/pro-Middle Class message that would span large segments of each major political party. Resp,

Mike Norman said...

Yes, Faber's the same, old, tired, message, but the media treats him like the Oracle at Delphi. Barrons is a joke.

kris said...

Hey Mike, Matt

Do you remember what episode that was on?

I see the podcasts are still available for download.

It'd be great if we could hear that.

Matt Franko said...

kris,
can you post a link to that page?

rsp

kris said...

np

http://feeds.bizradio.com/mikenorman

Matt Franko said...

kris,
It looks like the feed only goes back to late Dec. 08, Mike probably had Farber on in late 07 or earlier in 08.

Then at some point he just didnt have those types of people on anymore and preferred to just stick with reality.

Resp,