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Unpopular programs preserve jobs


Mon, Sep 13th, 2010
Posted in Commentary



The American public wants more and they want it now. We are a people that demand instant gratification. An economy as large as ours doesn't turn on a dime, especially with the severity of the downturn we have experienced over the last several years caused by the credit and housing bubbles, the most damaging since the Great Depression.

Two respected economists, Alan Blinder, a former vice chair of the Federal Reserve and Mark Zandi, a chief Moody's economist, recently authored a comprehensive paper, "How the Great Recession Was Brought to an End," which argues that efforts made by congress, two administrations (Bush and Obama), and the Federal Reserve averted a second Great Depression. Blinder advised both John Kerry and Al Gore during their presidential runs. Zandi advised John McCain.

The public stubbornly refuses to give credit to the success or, if you will, at least the ability of these efforts to keep our economy from going over a cliff which would have caused much deeper pain and suffering. These efforts were not perfect and certainly there are critics who disagree with Blinder and Zandi.

Blinder and Zandi concluded that in October 2008, the country came very close to a second depression. The response by the Bush administration and congress with tax rebate checks in the spring of 2008, the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) in October 2008, the Federal Reserve's easing of interest rates coupled with the response by the Obama administration and congress with the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) or the fiscal stimulus program in early 2009, comprehensive stress tests in the spring of 2009 ordered by the Treasury and the Federal Reserve and a host of other measures all helped to steady an economy spiraling out of control.

The fiscal stimulus will involve close to $1 trillion which is about seven percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The economists credit the stimulus with ending the great recession and starting the recovery. They suggest the stimulus raised the 2010 GDP by as much as $460 billion, held down unemployment by 1.5 percentage points and added almost 2.7 jobs to U.S. payrolls. The estimates are consistent with those of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the Obama administration.

Even though the public doesn't feel that optimistic at this point, Blinder and Zandi say we have made "enormous progress since the dark days of 2009." In turn the credit goes to the "unpr .....
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One Moment Please - More than just a balloon

Fri, Sep 3rd, 2010
Posted in Commentary

By Jason Sethre

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

Do you remember the feather that floated throughout the movie Forrest Gump from one scene to the next?

There is a debatable symbolism with ..... 
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One moment, please... More than just a balloon

Fri, Sep 3rd, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Do you remember the feather that floated throughout the movie Forrest Gump from one scene to the next?

There is a debatable symbolism with that feather. According to actor Tom Hanks, "Our destiny is only defined by how we deal with the chanc ..... 
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In Congress, there's always a next time

Fri, Aug 27th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

In this era of partisan confrontation and party-line votes on Capitol Hill, it's easy to lose sight of why Congress exists. It is our vehicle for finding remedies to the problems that beset us. It does this by bringing people of different beliefs an ..... 
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One Moment Please - It's all about the people

Fri, Aug 27th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

By Jason Sethre

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

This past Tuesday, August 24, the Fillmore County Journal team hosted a county-wide picnic at the South Hill Park in Preston, inviting the public ..... 
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Some liberals I have known

Fri, Aug 20th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

By R. L. Sauer

rsauer@fillmorecountyjournal.com

You are expecting a list such as Hubert Humphrey, John Kennedy, Franklin Roosevelt (as a sub teen I remember him as a vague figure in the papers and especially remember the outpouring of ..... 
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Legislation is just the start

Fri, Aug 13th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

You might imagine, now that President Obama has signed the massive financial reform package into law, that the issue is behind us. Hardly. In a way, the president's signature was just the starter's pistol.

This is because, despite its length ..... 
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One Moment Please - It's not about religion

Fri, Aug 13th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

Recent news of a proposed Islamic community center and mosque to be located two blocks from Ground Zero in New York City has stimulated quite a reaction in the realm of ..... 
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One moment, please... Bigger than ourselves

Fri, Aug 6th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

I would like to personally thank all of the Preston Area Chamber of Commerce committee members involved in putting together the first-ever CMA Mudracing Event and Big Bo ..... 
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