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## We are a nation of whiners

 July 10: Phil Graham, John McCain's economic adviser, says we have become a 'nation of whiners.' MSNBC's Contessa Brewer talks with CQ Politics.com's Jonathan Allen and The Washington Post's Jonath... (more)

He says that ~ "the recession is mental".

True, the technical requirement for a recesssion is not met, but people have attitudes about the economy based on their own personal budgets and problems. Is he saying that many Americans are not hurting? It sounds that way. So I see this going a long way towards affirming to voters that McCain is out of touch, as are his friends and advisors. Being as how McCain is not strong on economics, having an advisor who even appears to be unsympathetic to people's problems, will help to add bricks to the quickly growing wall.

Gramm now is trying to say that he meant politicians and not the voters, and since no one will believe that, he appears to be not only unsympathetic, but also a liar - a good ole boy.

Hopefully McCain will keep him on-staff.

 PhysOrg.com science news on PhysOrg.com >> 'Whodunnit' of Irish potato famine solved>> The mammoth's lament: Study shows how cosmic impact sparked devastating climate change>> Curiosity Mars rover drills second rock target
 Recognitions: Gold Member Science Advisor Staff Emeritus They didn't even spell his name right! Gramm is the chief architect of the current state of deregulation, that title being earned through his brilliant introduction of a mostly ununderstood section into the Commodity Futures Modernization Act (2000).

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I cringe at the glowing talk of exports.

 PAUL SOLMAN: And then, topping U.S. exports in volume, there's this. Clark Hahne, on the right, buys trash from places like this. CLARK HAHNE, Waste Paper Trader: You have the blue bin and the black bin. This is the blue bin, where the recyclables are in. The trucks go around. They dump it off here. PAUL SOLMAN: His partner, Jimmy Yang, sells it overseas. JIMMY YANG, Waste Paper Trader: Most of this material goes to Asia. It gets sorted out as different grades of paper, and it ends up in a paper mill in Asia. PAUL SOLMAN: So when we're seeing all these containers being loaded on, what percentage of them have waste paper in them? JIMMY YANG: One in three.
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/busin...rth_03-04.html

And that is just paper. Selling recyclable materials to China is generally big business.

I hardly see the references to exports as being representive of the state of US manufacturing, or our competitiveness abroad. In fact, being that much of the exports are garbage, it is really just a measure of the trade deficit - a natural consequence of imports.

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## We are a nation of whiners

Gramm and McCain are dilettante millionaires who wouldn't know economic pain under any foreseeable circumstance. Maine is losing mills and good-paying jobs left and right due to the poor economy and the rapidly increasing price of fuel. There was a story on the local news recently about a company that is doing pretty well. The company specializes in hauling big rigs (think VERY potent wrecker truck) and their business is through the roof. Truckers can't make money on their loads with $5/gal diesel, especially if they are filling wood contracts to pulp/paper mills that they signed a year ago. They can't make enough money to keep making payments on the trucks, so they abandon them and let the banks have them hauled off and auctioned. The banks who loaned against these trucks are taking it in the neck, too, because nobody around here wants to buy the trucks and try to operate them in this environment. Some of the very large trucking companies are consolidating and picking up business, but the small-medium owner-operator companies are going out of business. Trucking is just a segment of our state's economy, but it is an important one, with ripple-effects that are negatively impacting other sectors. Maybe we haven't met the technical definition of a "recession" yet, but we're in free-fall and this one promises to be long and deep.  Admin We aren't in a recession because the GDP hasn't not declined - probably because the federal government is borrowing the money, and they don't count that. The US spent about 2.25 trillion dollars on health care in 2007 (I need to find the reference), or abou 15.6% of the GDP. That's pretty sad. A good chunk of that would be for treating preventable diseases. On the other hand, the average net worth of Americans has declined for the last 3 quarters. (I'm looking for the citation on this). Recognitions: Gold Member Science Advisor Staff Emeritus  Quote by turbo-1 Gramm and McCain are dilettante millionaires who wouldn't know economic pain under any foreseeable circumstance. A wonderful start for an objective argument. Recognitions: Gold Member  Quote by Hurkyl A wonderful start for an objective argument. I'll bet you that neither of them can tell you the price of gas, diesel, or home heating oil, and that neither of them could tell you how much the average family's grocery bill has increased in the past year, nor give you a ballpark figure on how much health insurance would cost an average family, nor a ballpark estimate on what percentage of an average family's take-home pay would need to be spent to buy that insurance. These guys are millionaires who get their Italian-suited butts driven around in limos and fly from place to place in corporate jets. Their overly-simplistic views of macro-economics do not extend down to the economics of regions, cities, nor individuals. For those two nuts to characterize real economic pain felt by real people as a matter of perception (not real) is insulting in the extreme. Oh, the people don't have bread? Let them eat cake.  Recognitions: Gold Member McCain has done nothing for the people of Arizona except cater and pander to the wealthy. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/22/us...fQ&oref=slogin Recognitions: Gold Member  Quote by turbo-1 I'll bet you that neither of them can tell you the price of gas, diesel, or home heating oil, and that neither of them could tell you how much the average family's grocery bill has increased in the past year, nor give you a ballpark figure on how much health insurance would cost an average family, nor a ballpark estimate on what percentage of an average family's take-home pay would need to be spent to buy that insurance. ... And Millionaire Ivy leaguer Senator Obama could tell give all these common touches of course. Recognitions: Gold Member  Quote by mheslep And Millionaire Ivy leaguer Senator Obama could tell give all these common touches of course. The difference is (ta Dah!) that Obama does not tell average citizens that they are not suffering in this poor economy. McCain and Gramm did, and they are out of touch with the US public. This disconnect is telling.  Quote by mheslep And Millionaire Ivy leaguer Senator Obama could tell give all these common touches of course. Millionaire? Recognitions: Gold Member Science Advisor Staff Emeritus  Quote by mheslep And Millionaire Ivy leaguer Senator Obama could tell give all these common touches of course. That's rich. No doubt you know that Obama (net worth$1.3 million) has only been a millionaire for the last couple years or so, and grew up on food stamps and student loans. McCain, on the other hand, is worth $40 million, enjoys the luxury of about a dozen homes and can't seem to remember what he said in his last speech (let alone the days before he was a millionaire, not that he was ever in a poor financial state even then). Recognitions: Gold Member Science Advisor Staff Emeritus  Quote by turbo-1 I'll bet you that neither of them can tell you the price of gas,... If you have all these points, then why not stick to them? When you lace your posts with name-calling and such, especially as your opening salvo, you discredit yourself. Recognitions: Homework Help  Quote by Ivan Seeking Hopefully McCain will keep him on-staff. I think McCain has suggested that he would appoint him Ambassador to Belarus after distancing himself from Graham's remarks. The CNN anchor wondered whether people in Minsk would be OK with that.  Recognitions: Gold Member Science Advisor Staff Emeritus We will see. It was a cute joke [a nice deflection], but McCain and Gramm go way back.  Quote by turbo-1 Let them eat cake. No. It was Qu'on leur donne de la brioche ! Recognitions: Gold Member  Quote by Gokul43201 That's rich. No doubt you know that Obama (net worth$1.3 million) has only been a millionaire for the last couple years or so, and grew up on food stamps and student loans. McCain, on the other hand, is worth $40 million, ... Sen. Obama is well on his way with a 2005 income of$1.7M, give him time. By the time he's old enough to start shaving he may have \$40M too. A new autobiography every 10 years should do it.