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Friday, October 12, 2012

What the 2 Debates Did NOT Cover

There's a saying that even a broken watch is correct twice a day..

And this even the corporate mainstream media presents an article that is genuinely good at presenting information and/or making one think.  Today's gem comes from Yahoo! Financial entitled '2 Debates and No Mention of the Fed: How Is that Possible?' and makes some very good points which we agree with and wanted to share with our readership...

The following, with the exception of anything written in blue font is directly quoted from the original source and not written by us. 

"With two debates down and two to go, there's a lot of talk about who's winning and losing, about "style points" and, of course, intense scrutiny on what's been said. But let's take a moment to reflect on what hasn't been discussed or hasn't gotten nearly enough attention at the halfway point of the debate cycle:

The Fed & Ben Bernanke

There have been two debates and no mention of the Federal Reserve? How is that possible? The economy is the biggest issue of this campaign and the Fed is playing a huge role in the economy so it's hard to fathom that not one question has been asked about Ben Bernanke & Co. and none of the candidates have brought up the central bank.
One theory is that the "average" American doesn't care about the Fed, know what it does or who Ben Bernanke is. I think that underestimates the intelligence of the American people. They might not understand the intricacies of monetary policy but they do know they're getting almost no return on money markets and CDs and that a zero interest rate policy is highly abnormal.

~ We slightly disagree.  Most people are so clueless about the Federal Reserve, they think its part of the government when it really is as 'Federal' as FedEx.  Its a private bank that works for other banks to ensure their interests are always taken care of, and uses taxpayer money to do so.  

Moreover, Ron Paul rose to national prominence in large part because of his criticism of the Fed and his "audit the Fed" bill passed the House this summer.

Some believe the politicians don't want to mention the Fed because Bernanke's easy money is letting them get away with not seriously dealing with the deficit; all the more reason to have the discussion in these debates.

In sum, it's a black mark on both moderators and all four candidates that Fed policy — and Ben Bernanke's future — hasn't been the topic of intense debate.
How to Fix Housing

Arguably the most important economic indicator, housing has shown signs of life. Friday morning, JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon said "housing has turned the corner," a view supported by trends in home prices, starts and permits as well as the drop in foreclosures.

Vice President Biden referenced the Obama administration's efforts to help homeowners last night — "we moved in and helped people refinance their homes," he said — and chided Republicans for allegedly blocking legislation that would "help 14 million people who are struggling to stay in their homes because their mortgages are upside down, but they never missed a mortgage payment."

It would've been nice to hear a discussion about whether the administration's efforts really have helped homeowners and, conversely, what the Romney-Ryan plan is to help ensure the nascent, still-fragile, housing recovery takes hold.

~ Housing figures like unemployment, consumer confidence and GDP are so consistently manipulated that one can not take them seriously.  There is such a glut of both newly built homes that have not found buyers and tons of foreclosed properties competing with normal people trying to sell their home that prices won't see a climb for quite a while.  

And if it does, it will be based on one of two things:  location (some places are more desirable than others) or those disgusting pieces of shit speculators known as 'House Flippers' are back in the game which is really bad news down the road...
Rising Gasoline Prices

Gas prices are at or near record levels, which is the ultimate pocketbook issue for millions of Americans.

In the first presidential debate, Mitt Romney mentioned that "gasoline prices have doubled under the president."

But most of the discussion that night was about U.S. energy policy and whether or not President Obama deserves credit (or blame) for the increase in domestic drilling.

There was zero mention of gas prices in last night's VP debate, or rising food prices for that matter; that's a missed opportunity and belies the notion that the candidates are really focused on issues that matter to the middle class.

~ Hard for candidates overall to talk about things they're absolutely powerless to fix.  The only way gas prices can go down is if the President released some of the national reserves or took away the federal taxes imposed per gallon.  And motorists would only feel benefit at the pump if state/local governments did the same, which will never, ever happen.
There's really little to nothing any President of either party can to to truly fix the economy.  One may try taxing more or taxing less, or some trick or scheme.. Ultimately its about confidence.. 'con'...  conning successfully the American people into believing things are better so they spend more and get into more debt and from that, hope springs that businesses will be conned into hiring more people to fill the need for more products/services.

But its simply harder and harder to do that when the nation is further and further into debt.. $$ that should be going into the economy is going elsewhere, namely to pay down the deficit which as we've said numerous times before is like making minimum payments on your credit card while the debt (the total owed) keeps expanding.

Whoever wins-- Obama or Romney will lie to you that things are going to get better soon..  Don't be upset by it... its just how sitting Presidents are.  The last President to speak to the people with any honesty about the economy was Carter and he was and still is hated for it and the tone used to express it.

So expect no substance from the next two Presidential debates... Just a lot of statistical distortions, empty promises and unrealistic solutions...  and let us hope no more laughing.