Week 13 Discussion In November 2010 Democrats suffered enormous political losses

by | Aug 3, 2022 | Economics

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Week 13 Discussion
In November 2010 Democrats suffered enormous political losses across the country; in Washington Democrats lost 63 seats in the House of Representatives, thereby becoming the minority party in the House, and 6 seats in the Senate, where the Democrats managed to maintain a slim majority.
In this Forum we will outline some of the key economic and political issues of the November 2010 elections.
Students are required to POST TWICE:
FIRST POST. 100-300 WORDS**: (by Wednesday @ 11:59pm)
Select ONE of the key issues listed below and comment on how this issue (or some sub-issue or idea) influenced the election. You may also focus on one particular concept, policy or event related to one of these “big issues” if you wish. Try to initiate a class dialogue so that students are able to achieve an overview of some key issues–issues which are still with us today.
SECOND POST: (by Saturday @ 11:59pm)
Offer constructive, cordial comment on the post of another student (Sean Holmes) Post included.
FORECLOSURE MITIGATION AND ECONOMIC PHILOSOPHY
In Chapter 12 Blinder outlines the many programs initiated to mitigate foreclosures in 2009-2010. On such program was the Making Home Affordable plan (which included The Home Affordable Refinancing Program and The Home Affordable Modification Program). In reaction to the announcement of this plan by President Obama on February 18, Rick Santelli, a CNBC commentator provided the following response:
Link: https://youtu.be/bEZB4taSEoA
What are the big issues and principles of this debate?
Blinder uses the terms “laissez faire” and “Social Darwinism” to characterize principles guiding folks like Santelli in their reasoning. What does he mean by these terms?
In the background of this debate is a political philosophy that distrusts “big government”. This philosophy is a foundation for political movements (the so-called “Tea Party” movement and “libertarians”, led by Congressman Ron Paul) that had a great impact on the 2010 elections.
THE ECONOMICS AND POLITICS OF THE LONG SLUMP
In October 2010 unemployment was 9.4%. Blinder argues that without government intervention it “might have been worse.” In Weeks 9 and 10 we discussed the responses of TARP (Bush and Obama administration policies) and ARRA (The Obama administration stimulus). The American public, in 2010 at least, did not have a favorable view of either policies and blamed the Democrats for the enduring slump in unemployment.
And there were other issues related to the perception that TARP and ARRA were ineffective and unfair. These include not merely the loss of jobs but the destruction of wealth for millions of Americans, the lack of any substantial criminal prosecution for executive fraud, and the perception that TARP had bailed out banks at the expense of taxpayers. Related to these two issues, of course, were risk-encouraging Wall Street compensation practices, which became better known after the crash of 2008 and were untouched by any meaningful regulation.
A related issue, not mentioned by Blinder, is growing income inequality between the top 1-5% and the rest. Here is a link to some statistics on this issue:
Guide to Statistics on Income Inequality, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
What are some of the key ideas and issues in these debates? Which issue is most meaningful to you? Provide comment, information and initiate a discussion with your classmates.
Re: Week 13 Discussion
by Sean Holmes – Sunday, July 31, 2022, 2:27 PM
Class,
As many of us have probably learned throughout our academic career, Darwinism is the belief in survival of the fittest. Created initially when observing animals and how they adapt to their environment through physical changes, such as birds’ beaks doubling in size due to their food requiring extra strength to open. Social Darwinism is essentially the same thing but with the demographic of humans in society. It’s the idea that certain people become more powerful due to the fact they are better. In the video, he asks why the citizens who didn’t fail and can still pay their mortgages are helping the citizens who are underwater. In social Darwinism, this would allow all the individuals underwater to die and have society move forward with the strong/smart citizens creating a better society. In a way, I am not against this, as the government continually tries to help in areas they should not be, and even when they do, they don’t do a good job. The issue is that if we were to ‘leave people behind’ then it would take many years, possibly decades, for society to get through this phase and would offer no growth during this phase.
Sean

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