Take a look at this article from the leftist Washington Post, which reports on how the socialists in Argentina have imposed price controls in order to minimize the impact of runaway inflation caused by money printing.
Argentina announced a two-month price freeze on supermarket products Monday in an effort to stop spiraling inflation.
The price freeze applies to every product in all of the nation’s largest supermarkets — a group including Walmart, Carrefour, Coto, Jumbo, Disco and other large chains. The companies’ trade group, representing 70 percent of the Argentine supermarket sector, reached the accord with Commerce Secretary Guillermo Moreno, the government’s news agency Telam reported.
[…]Economist Soledad Perez Duhalde of the abeceb.com consulting firm predicted on Monday that the price freeze will have only a very short term effect, and noted that similar moves in Argentina had failed to control inflation. Consumers shouldn’t be surprised if the supermarkets are slow to restock their shelves and offer fewer products for sale, she added.
A more effective way to contain inflation would be to “reduce government spending, which is financing an expansion of the money supply, and to have a credible price index.”
Isn’t ironic that the United States is pursuing the exact same policy of printing money and overspending as Argentina has? Excerpt we are a little further along.
What consumers will certainly do is scramble into local stores to take advantage of artificially-controlled prices knowing very well they have two short months to stock up on perishable goods at today’s prices, before the country’s inflation comes soaring back, only this time many of the local stores will not be around as their profit margins implode and as owners, especially of foreign-based chains, make the prudent decision to get out of Dodge while the getting’s good and before the next steps, including such measures as nationalization, in the escalation into a full out hyperinflationary collapse, are taken by Argentina’s female ruler.
[…]So to summarize: first capital controls, then a currency crisis, then expectations of sovereign default, then a rise in military tensions, and finally – price controls, after which all out chaos usually follows.
Study this sequence well: it is coming to every “developed” country near you in the months and years ahead.
Just to be clear, price controls are a clear signal to suppliers to stop supplying, since they cannot make any money if prices are held low by government decree. Price controls lead to shortages, necessarily. And that’s what’s in store for Argentina once the private sector food suppliers (and other companies) pull out of there when they can’t make a profit. There are other places they need to be.
Imagine if America elected a charismatic, incompetent fool to run our country like socialist dictators do in Argentina or Venezuela. Imagine if the mainstream media, with their non-quantitative degrees and lack of real-world experience, covered for his every blunder. Where would we be then?
Moody’s Investors Service said that the fiscal package passed by both houses of Congress yesterday is a further step in clarifying the medium-term deficit and debt trajectory of the federal government. It does not, however, provide a basis for a meaningful improvement in the government’s debt ratios over the medium term. The rating agency expects that further fiscal measures are likely to be taken in coming months that would result in lower future budget deficits, which are necessary if the negative outlook on the government’s bond rating is to be returned to stable. On the other hand, lack of further deficit reduction measures could affect the rating negatively. Notably, yesterday’s package does not address the federal government’s statutory debt limit, which was reached on December 31. The need to raise the debt limit may affect the outcome of future budget negotiations.
[…]The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that the net increase in budget deficits from the fiscal package when compared to its baseline scenario (which assumes taxes on all income levels would increase) is about $4 trillion over the coming decade, excluding higher interest costs on the resultant higher debt. Based on that estimate, a preliminary calculation by Moody’s shows that the ratio of government debt to GDP would peak at about 80% in 2014 and then remain in the upper 70 percent range for the remaining years of the coming decade. Stabilization at this level would leave the government less able to deal with future pressures from entitlement spending or from unforeseen shocks. Thus, further measures that bring about a downward debt trajectory over the medium term are likely to be needed to support the Aaa rating.
This will not be our first credit rating downgrade, we had one before from Standard and Poor’s in August 2011 and a second one from Egan Jones in April 2012. So this will be the third one in a row during Obama’s borrowing and spending spree.
Would you like to see some graphs showing the impact that the fiscal cliff deal has on our long-term debt? There is a pretty good article on National Review by Yuval Levin that has the charts. The truth is that entitlements are driving our debt, and the fiscal cliff deal does nothing about it.
All Obama seems to be able to do as President is borrow from future generations in order to spend now. When I consider his drug-using years with his “Choom Gang” friends, I’m not sure that he is really qualified to do anything other than borrow and waste money. So far, he’s spent a lot more time using drugs than running businesses in the private sector, it seems to me. Maybe he has an addiction issue with borrowing and spending?
GOP presidential challenger Mitt Romney tonight charged that President Barack Obama’s jobs plan is a failure, with millions out of work and looking for help.
“My plan is to put people back to work in America,” Romney said tonight at the first of three presidential debates scheduled for the 2012 presidential election season.
“Look at the history of the past four years. We have 23 million people unemployed. Keeping with the status quo is not going to work for the American people.”
Obama returned to his oft-repeated theme of blaming George W. Bush, asserting the taxation approach Romney was proposing was nothing more than a return to the “trickle-down” economy of the Republican plan.
Obama began the debate by reciting familiar campaign themes, suggesting once again that his administration inherited from Bush one of the worst economies in the history of the United States.
But Romney struck a theme of energy independence and advancing small business as keys to getting the U.S. economy growing again. He accused Obama of proposing “trickle-down government,” represented by more government regulation and more taxation.
Romney disputed Obama’s assertion he was locked into a tax cut, charging that under the Obama administration the middle class has been pressed by reduced income, diminished job opportunities and increased food and energy costs.
From the first moments of the debate, Romney looked Obama directly in the eye, took exception to president’s assertions about Romney’s policies, and gave more precise answers.
Obama pressed that Romney’s economic plan called for $5 trillion in tax cuts and $2 trillion in military budget increases, a program Obama asserted would demand tax increases on middle-income earners.
“Look, I’ve got five boys and I’m used to somebody saying something that’s not true and hoping that by repeating it I’m going to believe it,” Romney countered, asserting that everything Obama said about his tax program was inaccurate.
Obama insisted Romney’s tax-reduction plan of necessity would either increase the deficit or demand tax increases for the middle class, charging that under Romney’s definition Donald Trump would be a small business.
Objecting to Jim Lehrer’s interruption that the first segment was exceeding the 15-minute limit, Romney charged that Obama would increase taxes on small businesses at the cost of 700,000 jobs.
As the discussion advanced to the nation’s deficit, Obama reiterated his statement that he inherited a massive deficit, and appeared on the defensive.
“You have been president for four years, you said you would cut the deficit in half and you have run $1 trillion in deficits each of the four years,” Romney attacked. “That does not get the job done.”
Romney pointed out that when the economy was growing as slowly as it is now, more slowly than when Obama took office, this is no time to increase taxes.
“You never balance the budget by increasing taxes,” Romney insisted. “I don’t want to go down the path of Spain.”
Romney said “ignoring the 10th Amendment is not the way to have a vibrant economy.”
Romney said the key to education is great teachers, and he raised a reference to the U.S. Constitution regarding citizen rights.
“I interpret our founding documents as providing a responsibility for religious freedom – to pursue happiness by taking care of the less fortunate – but massive government involvement limits freedom – the path we are taking is not working with 23 million Americans unemployed and 50 million on food stamps.”
Obama said the responsibility of the federal government was important in improving the educational system in America.
“Budgets reflect choices. If we cut taxes to benefit people like Gov. Romney and me, it makes a difference,” Obama. He again demanded specifics of the GOP plans.
“When it comes to making college affordable, whether it be two years or four years, we cut out the middleman and eliminated banks from making a profit in student loans. Gov. Romney believes in education but he tells kids to borrow from their parents to go to college.”
Romney responded, “Mr. President, you are entitled to your own airplane and your own house – but not to your own facts.”
Romney said Obama put $90 billion into green jobs, but half of the recipients went bankrupt and others were owned by contributors to your campaign, and questioned the number of teachers that would have hired.
Romney proposed grading schools to know which were succeeding and which were failing.
“Massachusetts schools are ranked No. 1 in education because I care for education for all our children,” Romney said.
Look: you know how much I love the guy, and you know how much of a high information viewer I am, and I can see the logic of some of Obama’s meandering, weak, professorial arguments. But this was a disaster for the president for the key people he needs to reach, and his effete, wonkish lectures may have jolted a lot of independents into giving Romney a second look…
The person with authority on that stage was Romney – offered it by one of the lamest moderators ever, and seized with relish. This was Romney the salesman. And my gut tells me he sold a few voters on a change tonight. It’s beyond depressing. But it’s true.
Call it the curse of incumbency. Like many of his predecessors, President Obama fell victim Wednesday night to high expectations, a short fuse, and a hungry challenger.
If Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney didn’t win the first of three presidential debates outright, he more than covered the spread. He was personable, funny, and relentlessly on the attack against a heavily favored Obama.
The president looked peeved and flat as he carried a conversation, for the first time in four years, with somebody telling him he’s wrong.
This debate was a blowout – and that’s just the reaction of the left.
Left-wing reactions on Twitter
Bill Maher: (HBO)
Peter Beinart (The New Republic)
Piers Morgan: (CNN)
And CHRIS MATTHEWS too:
Something else ran down his leg tonight, and it wasn’t a tingle, it was a tinkle.
Romney leading by 4 points in swing states
The latest poll of swings states from the left-wing Politico shows Romney leading Obama by 4 points, even with a 2 point oversampling of Democrats.
This week, Politico released its latest Battleground pollof the presidential race. Despite coming from the left-wing news site, the poll is one of my favorites. Its put together by respected pollsters from both parties, makes available its full cross-tabs and uses a very modest and reasonable turnout model for its sample. Including leaners, the sample in the poll is D+2. Nationally, Obama leads by 2-3 points, but, in the critical swing states, Romney now has the edge.
Each candidate leads in states considered “safe” for their party. In safe GOP states, Romney leads by 8. In safe Democrat states, Obama leads by a massive 22 points. But, in the more numerous and more important “toss up” states, Romney leads by 4, hitting the critical 50% threshold.
In the slightly different category of “battleground” states identified by Politico, Romney leads by 2, 49-47. Romney’s lead over Obama is powered primarily by his edge with independents. Romney leads Obama by 4 among the important swing voters. By 11 points, these voters think Romney would do better on the economy than Obama, 51-40.
Romney also has a big edge with middle class families, who prefer him over Obama by 15 points, 56-41.
My prediction for this election remains Romney 52, Obama 47.
Ratings firm Egan-Jones cut its credit rating on the U.S. government to “AA-” from “AA,” citing its opinion that quantitative easing from the Federal Reserve would hurt the U.S. economy and the country’s credit quality.
The Fed on Thursday said it would pump $40 billion into the U.S. economy each month until it saw a sustained upturn in the weak jobs market.
In its downgrade, the firm said that issuing more currency and depressing interest rates through purchasing mortgage-backed securities does little to raise the U.S.’s real gross domestic product, but reduces the value of the dollar.
In turn, this increases the cost of commodities, which will pressure the profitability of businesses and increase the costs of consumers thereby reducing consumer purchasing power, the firm said.
In April, Egan-Jones cuts the U.S. credit rating to “AA” from “AA+” with a negative watch, citing a lack of progress in cutting the mounting federal debt.
Moody’s Investors Servicecurrently rates the United States Aaa, Fitch rates the country AAA, and Standard & Poor’s rates the country AA-plus. All three of those ratings have a negative outlook.
Could this have anything to do with the decision to print $40 billion a month to “stimulate” the economy? Once you’ve given up on letting businesses create jobs by lowering their taxes and removing burdensome regulations, then printing money is all you have left. But no one mistakes that for economic growth, least of all credit rating agencies.
Declining U.S. labor force (structural unemployment/government dependency)
Labor force participation rate
Average hourly earnings of workers
Federal debt crisis
Risk of renewed recession
And here’s the detail of one that I haven’t mentioned much before on this blog:
5. Average hourly earnings were unchanged in the August jobs report, and are up just 1.7% over the past year. Not only does that match the slowest pace on record, but one you account for inflation, wages are flat to down.
New income data from the Census Bureau reveal what a great job Barack Obama has done for the middle class as President. During his entire tenure in the oval office, median household income has declined by 7.3%.
In January, 2009, the month he entered office, median household income was $54,983. By June, 2012, it had spiraled down to $50,964. That’s a loss of $4,019 per family, the equivalent of losing a little less than one month’s income a year, every year. And on our current course that is only going to get worse not better…
[…]Three years into the Obama recovery, median family income had declined nearly 5% by June, 2012 as compared to June, 2009. That is nearly twice the decline of 2.6% that occurred during the recession from December, 2007 until June, 2009. As the Wall Street Journal summarized in its August 25-26 weekend edition, “For household income, in other words, the Obama recovery has been worse than the Bush recession.”
[…]Obama has failed the poor as well as the middle class. Last year, the Census Bureau reported more Americans in poverty than ever before in the more than 50 years that Census has been tracking poverty. Now The Huffington Post reports that the poverty rate is on track to rise to the highest level since 1965, before the War on Poverty began. A July 22 story by Hope Yen reports that when the new poverty rates are released in September, “even a 0.1 percentage point increase would put poverty at the highest level since 1965.”
Gateway Pundit adds:
Barack Obama is not just the food stamp president.
A record one in seven Americans is on food stamps today thanks to Barack Obama.
Barack Obama is also the poverty and pain president.
Under Obama, 6.4 million Americans are living below the poverty line and there is a record number of Americans living in deep poverty.
Moody’s Investors Service said Tuesday that it would probably cut its triple-A rating on U.S. government debt by a notch unless congressional leaders can strike a budget deal in the coming months to bring down the deficit.
“If those negotiations lead to specific policies that produce a stabilization and then downward trend in the ratio of federal debt to GDP over the medium term, the rating will likely be affirmed,” Moody’s said in a press release Tuesday. “If those negotiations fail to produce such policies, however, Moody’s would expect to lower the rating, probably to Aa1.”
The threat comes after one of the other big three ratings firms, Standard & Poor’s, downgraded the U.S. last year following the brawl in Washington over the debt ceiling.
This would be the second credit downgrade – both occurred because of Obama’s Marxist policies of “spreading the wealth around” to punish job creators and their employees.
Are you better off now than you were four years ago?