Obama 2012: A spoon for every worker! (video)

Our smartest president evah says employment is struggling because of the likes of — wait for it — ATMs (the relevant discussion begins at the 2:00 mark):

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For those who can’t/won’t watch the video, here’s what he said:

There are some structural issues with our economy where a lot of businesses have learned to become much more efficient with a lot fewer workers. You see it when you go to a bank and you use an ATM, you don’t go to a bank teller, or you go to the airport and you’re using a kiosk instead of checking in at the gate.

He went on to say some other, noncontroversial things about retraining people with the skills they’ll need in the future. But his starting point for the necessity of such retraining is revealing.

First, his ATM example isn’t even true: Jonah Goldberg at NRO takes a look at the actual labor statistics and finds that, not only did the number of bank tellers grow even as ATMs became much more prevalent, but the number of bank tellers is forecast to continue to grow during the years to come.

Second, as RedState’s Erick Erickson points out, President Obama is perfectly happy to see some jobs (in fossil fuel energy) disappear.

Third, the displacement of certain lines of work by new technology has been going on for centuries. This is nothing new. And neither the cotton gin nor the automobile killed the economy because they displaced workers or made certain other technologies obsolete. On the contrary.

Erickson also cited a particularly germane section from Henry Hazlitt’s “Economics in One Lesson”:

Among the most viable of all economic delusions is the belief that machines on net balance create unemployment. Destroyed a thousand times, it has risen a thousand times out of its own ashes as hardy and vigorous as ever. Whenever there is a long-continued mass unemployment, machines get the blame anew. This fallacy is still the basis of many labor union practices…

The belief that machines cause unemployment…leads to preposterous conclusions. Not only must we be causing unemployment with every technological improvement we make today, but primitive man must have started causing it with the first efforts he made to save himself from needless toil and sweat…

Though it’s not an exact parallel, I’m also put in the mind of a famous Milton Friedman story, recounted by economist Mark J. Perry:

While traveling by car during one of his many overseas travels, Professor Milton Friedman spotted scores of road builders moving earth with shovels instead of modern machinery. When he asked why powerful equipment wasn’t used instead of so many laborers, his host told him it was to keep employment high in the construction industry. If they used tractors or modern road building equipment, fewer people would have jobs was his host’s logic.

“Then instead of shovels, why don’t you give them spoons and create even more jobs?” Friedman inquired.

I can see it now: “Obama 2012: A spoon for every worker!”

– By Kyle Wingfield

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64 comments Add your comment

I Report (-: You Whine )-: Thee Magnificent!!! mmm, mmmm, mmmmm! Just sayin...

June 15th, 2011
11:54 am

The socialists are confused and easily frightened by shiny new things.

Why do you think they want to make it all stop?

GW

June 15th, 2011
11:54 am

Are you really that petty, Kyle.

The Anti-Wooten

June 15th, 2011
12:06 pm

@GW, since one of Kyle’s primary sources here is the Red State King of Petty the answer should be obvious.

Kyle’s just feeling dissed since he doesn’t have a Bachmann or Palin to discuss like Jay.

retired early

June 15th, 2011
12:11 pm

Kyle

This is an analogy, attempting to explain why machines replace workers. If ATMs did not replace some tellers, why the hell would they use them. You must microscope everything that comes out of Obama’s mouth to find some tiny inconsistency to write about. Had you had the same scrutiny with Bush, You would still be writing about him. This has got to be your personal highpoint of petty journalism.

Richard

June 15th, 2011
12:12 pm

I’ll back the guy up for a minute: The key thing from his answer is the phrase “structural issues”. He’s saying that there is a disconnect between the skills required to do work and the skills that the labor force has. This isn’t anything new, but it’s something that most Americans don’t understand. It’s also the primary explanation for people being on unemployment insurance much longer than the typical timeframe.

Kyle, by focusing on the ATM example, I think you’re turning away from the real substance of the message. Cut the guy a little slack. He doesn’t have a teleprompter.

GW

June 15th, 2011
12:30 pm

How about writing about Rick Perry’s need to learn how to maintain a respectable distance between Church and State.

Kyle Wingfield

June 15th, 2011
12:41 pm

retired early and Richard: And it’s a very poor analogy, on every level. The economy’s structural problems have nothing to do with ATMs or any other type of automation. And, as Goldberg pointed out, his example isn’t even *true*.

I write about these kinds of things Obama says because, if they’re the best he can some up with, they suggest he doesn’t understand the economy or basic economics.

Jefferson

June 15th, 2011
12:41 pm

Again you are just throwing little ball in the fan, back up to get your paycheck….

Blue Man on a Red Island

June 15th, 2011
12:46 pm

“I write about these kinds of things Obama says because, if they’re the best he can some up with, they suggest he doesn’t understand the economy or basic economics.”

This from a guy that still believes tax cuts = jobs. Spare us.

Independent thinker

June 15th, 2011
12:47 pm

I just heard yesterday of a law firm that is outsourcing work that a paralegal would get at least $50 an hour to India at $5 an hour- I guess Kyle would not call that a structural issue either. Somebody in the right wing needs to explain to me why ten years of the Bush tax cuts for the rich and particularly for capital gains on passive investments at an all time low and no estate tax hardly has not resulted in massive job growth as the holy grail of the right wing preaches every five minutes. Please explain to us Mr. Wingfield what structural infirmities limit the rich from investing if you are not too busy listening to the economic lectures of esteemed professors Bachman, Palin, Limbaugh, Coulter, Hannity or Gingrich. How much less than zero do the Koch Brothers, Carlysle Group, Halliburton or GE need to pay in taxes so as to create jobs?? Oh I forgot they need to use their tax savings to outsource and get government contracts to survive-right Kyle? If Obama had not passed Obamacare they would be crerating jobs right now? How many employees did Ms. Bachman and her husband employ with the $250,000 in farm subsidies they get??????????Or is that a structural problem too???

Kyle Wingfield

June 15th, 2011
12:58 pm

Independent thinker: He would have been on much firmer ground if he’d mentioned globalization instead of automation. Again, as I wrote in the OP: It’s not that there isn’t something to be said about the need for retraining workers — heck, I wrote pretty much the same thing a few weeks ago.

Instead, it’s Obama’s starting point for which jobs we need to worry about, and why. A president who, to exemplify our structural challenges, laments the demise — excuse me, faux-demise — of bank tellers does not inspire confidence imo.

Finally, do you really need to ask why relatively low taxes have not been sufficient for the economy? I dunno, maybe the housing and financial crashes that we suffered due to years of lax monetary policy, poorly done regulation, well-intentioned but mistaken social policy, an over-reliance on a small number of mis-incentivized ratings agencies, mistakes and in some cases outright fraud by borrowers and lenders…need I go on?

No one who understands economics has ever even made the argument that *all* we need are low taxes. I certainly haven’t; it’s a caricature that you lefties — excuse me, “independent thinkers” — promote.

ByteMe

June 15th, 2011
1:01 pm

Kyle hates it, but Obama’s point is correct if you look past the last three years and stretch your horizon back 30+ years. You’ll see a trend that took the average under-educated lower-middle-class jobs and automated or self-served them out of existence. Now those lower-middle-class people can’t move so easily into the upper-middle-class like my Dad did all those years ago. But if you have an education — the kind you get in those really expensive over-crowded colleges — you can move into the upper-middle class easier. But the average person can’t afford or otherwise cannot get that education. So we’ve created a permanent structural underclass and our spikes in unemployment amongst that lower-middle-class are going to be longer and larger.

But Kyle wants to focus on the past three years and thinks Obama doesn’t understand what happened. Myopia?

Kyle Wingfield

June 15th, 2011
1:04 pm

ByteMe: And if you look beyond the last 30 years — to the last 200+ years — you’ll recognize that people have been making the same incorrect argument for a long time. Or do you prefer to believe we only now reached the culmination of a centuries-long destructive economic policy of embracing new technology?

ByteMe

June 15th, 2011
1:05 pm

Jonah Goldberg at NRO takes a look at the actual labor statistics and finds that, not only did the number of bank tellers grow even as ATMs became much more prevalent, but the number of bank tellers is forecast to continue to grow during the years to come.

BTW, this is fake statistics with inadequate context. How many additional bank branches were created during that time? Did the number of tellers per branch increase or decrease? If ATMs had not come into existence would the number of tellers be higher or lower? Could we have employed all those under-educated people — unemployment rate over 15% — as tellers if ATMs didn’t exist?

#FAIL

Kyle Wingfield

June 15th, 2011
1:05 pm

Btw, the declining quality of public education, as discussed downstairs, is another example of a structural economic challenge.

Kyle Wingfield

June 15th, 2011
1:07 pm

ByteMe: Why does it matter if there is one branch with six tellers or two branches with three apiece? Or, to be more accurate, given the statistics, two branches with three or four apiece?

ByteMe

June 15th, 2011
1:08 pm

Kyle, if you look back 200+ years, you’ll see the same cycle of transformational and structural changes happening in every century. But we’re getting to the point where you need a higher educational experience to overcome it… not so much when we went from hand-processing cotton to having it handled in a factory.

So you claim the argument is “incorrect”, but that doesn’t make the argument incorrect. It just means you’re unwilling to accept it or refute it yourself with hard facts that show that the change we’re going through isn’t structural and doesn’t affect the employment levels of those jobs like bank tellers.

ByteMe

June 15th, 2011
1:10 pm

So, Kyle, do we have more banks now than we had before? I don’t recall growing up with 10 bank branches within 2 miles of my house like I have now. More like two branches 5+ miles away and yes that was in a suburban area of similar size and quality.

Kyle Wingfield

June 15th, 2011
1:12 pm

ByteMe @ 1:08: That sounds more like the description of an economically problematic *education* problem, not the unfortunate fallout from technological advances. Should we decide not to innovate anymore just because the schools can’t keep up?

And @1:10: I’m not arguing the number of branches hasn’t increased. I’m asking why that matters at all to the discussion at hand.

ByteMe

June 15th, 2011
1:13 pm

Also Why does it matter if there is one branch with six tellers or two branches with three apiece? Again: would we have more tellers at bank branches (and maybe even MORE bank branches) without ATMs? Would we still be employing people to pump gas if self-serve gas didn’t suddenly take off? Of course we would.

The change that’s happening is taking menial work and rendering it less necessary, and our employment stats are showing that. People with little education are in the high unemployment bracket; people with lots of education are in the low unemployment bracket. It’s a very uneven economy and until we get rid of a lot of lower-middle-class/undereducated workers, it’s going to stay that way, because the changes will just keep coming faster and faster.

Kyle Wingfield

June 15th, 2011
1:13 pm

BRB after I finish my Thursday print column (speaking of changing technologies…)

ByteMe

June 15th, 2011
1:18 pm

Should we decide not to innovate anymore just because the schools can’t keep up?

Conservatives might say it’s not the schools that can’t keep up, but the students. Who’s really responsible for not getting the right type of education?

There’s definitely a bell curve for intelligence… not everyone can be on the right side of the curve. But politicians can’t come out and say “you’re likely not smart enough to do better”. Instead, they have to lament that the economy is passing them by and come up with programs to help smooth out the transitions. I don’t think anyone is doing enough of that now, and I think you’d agree as well.

But, coming back to your main argument, complaining that Obama “doesn’t get it” because he’s using an example you don’t like is… as others have pointed out… pretty ridiculous.

ByteMe

June 15th, 2011
1:18 pm

I’m off to feed anyway. Good luck with your writing.

Bart Abel

June 15th, 2011
1:22 pm

I find this criticism lacking.

Obama is illustrating the concept of “creative destruction”, a concept that conservative politicians and pundits have been repeating for years to justify accepting certain levels of short-term unemployment. This basic economic truth is suddenly controversial among conservatives?

Even if the absolute number of bank tellers are growing–a result of population growth and other factors–they’re obviously fewer tellers than there otherwise would be without the advent of ATM machines. The same is true with grocery store cashiers, parking lot attendants, etcetera.

The point Obama was making was, well, the point that Obama made. Creative destruction (which leads to elimination of certain jobs AND/OR the reduction in the growth of certain jobs) is a factor that requires training for persons whose skills become obsolete. To reduce long-term unemployment, we need to make sure that such persons receive such retraining.

For the record, I’d love to see some jobs in the fossil fuel energy sector disappear as well. I also support training workers in for clean energy jobs to more than offset such job losses.

GW

June 15th, 2011
1:23 pm

To read some of Kyle’s replies, one might be left with the misimpression that the Republicans such as Ryan are not really that interested in tax cuts or that Grover’s whines have nothing whatsoever to do with the Republican’s pledges to not raise taxes. Then again, cutting taxes are likely just a means to an end for people such as Kyle — an end to government. Long live the anarchy, eh Kyle. How did you ever survive those years overseas. Forced to actually come into contact with socialists on a daily basis. The horror.

GW

June 15th, 2011
1:26 pm

I was thinking about writing a program that generates cheap political commentary from key word input. I wonder if there would be an interest in such a thing.

Aquagirl

June 15th, 2011
1:30 pm

Kyle, it’s an analogy, not a major speech, so I’d give Obama a pass for not explicitly mentioning globalization. As Byte partially pointed out, previous moves, like from stagecoach to railroad were not only less of a leap for workers, they were contained here in America. While the ATM has to be serviced by an American (or at least someone physically present here) it can be built elsewhere. Heck, we’ll even spend huge bucks upgrading the port in Savannah so the Chinese can ship it here cheaply.

The control of ATM’s depends on computer and satellite networks. The satellite can be built and launched by Europeans, and the network can be outsourced to India. This is an entirely new ballgame.

And we’re reaching the upper limits. What education do you need to repair ATM’s? It’s a fairly specific skill set, most banks would probably prefer to hire an experienced worker. This creates one high-paid sought-after employee, but getting your foot in the door is tough. On the other hand, counting and basic paperwork are easily transferred skills that could be taught to high school grads—-if they weren’t terminally stupid. (You covered the last part already today, lol.)

retired early

June 15th, 2011
1:36 pm

Kyle

Obama was talking in generalities.
At least you see that the economic collapse resulted from “lax regulation” among other things, unlike most believe from the “right”.
All I’ve heard from the GOP is “eliminate regulations” and “cut taxes”. Look to Canada for an example of how to run a country. Their banks have to service their mortgage loans, they have National health Care, a fiscally sound “social safety net” and they DID NOT HAVE A RECESSION.
No “bubble to implode” their economy. But they also do not try to “Police the world”.
Without the Iraq War, the Bush tax cuts and the unfunded medicaid drug bill ($500 billion), what would our Nat’l Debt be right now…throw in better regulation of our banks, thus avoiding the money grabs by the “investment community” and the housing market collapse that followed…where would we be. If I hear “cut taxes” one more time from the “one trick pony” GOP to solving this debt crisis, I think i’m going to vomit.

Independent thinker

June 15th, 2011
1:47 pm

Okay Kyle our president is a moron who knows far less than you about banking and does not deserve to be president so why is it Kyle that every bank, credit card company and finance company uses employees overseas to handle their customer noiservice? I just got a call last week from a GE finance person in Phillipines wanting me to explain a letter I sent with my final payment wanting an explanation of property tax charges that were absurd. Why not an American who could understand plain English? I guess I was dreaming right Kyle?
Ever watch Slumdog Millionaire ie . call centers? or is that too sensitive a film on squalid living conditions for an arch conservative?
I once had an underwriter in India on a banking matter for a loan with Citi tell me I was required to have my tax returns filed by January 1 of every year and my loan would be declined because it was March and I had not filed. Maybe that is one of the reasons why we had so many loan failures. And maybe the government should step in and ban overseas use of financial info. by nonUS citizens or is that too much gov’t interference??????????How about taxing the profits from obscenely low wages paid by GE who paid no taxes?

GW

June 15th, 2011
1:52 pm

Someone stick a fork in Kyle. I think he’s done.

Halftrack

June 15th, 2011
1:58 pm

Kyle; Obummer has just admitted that the shovel ready projects were not shovel ready! He’s still wondering why there is missing jobs. All he has to do is look in the mirror for the culprit.

MarkV

June 15th, 2011
2:03 pm

Kyle, you sense of logic appears to have abandoned you.

Obama: “You see it when you go to a bank and you use an ATM, you don’t go to a bank teller,”

Kyle: “First, his ATM example isn’t even true: Jonah Goldberg at NRO takes a look at the actual labor statistics and finds that, not only did the number of bank tellers grow even as ATMs became much more prevalent, but the number of bank tellers is forecast to continue to grow during the years to come.”

Where is Obama’s ATM example NOT true? I use a bank, I used to go to a teller, now I go to the ATM. I bet many people are just like that. Whether the number of bank tellers grows or not is immaterial to the Obama’s statement, and your verdict that it is not rue is false.

Next: “Second, as RedState’s Erick Erickson points out, President Obama is perfectly happy to see some jobs (in fossil fuel energy) disappear.” And then: “Third, the displacement of certain lines of work by new technology has been going on for centuries. This is nothing new.” The second part immediately contradicts the criticism implicit in the first one.

saywhat?

June 15th, 2011
2:03 pm

Jonah Goldberg is the same idiot who thinks the NAZI party were “leftists” because the word “socialist” was in their acronym. Whenever somebody starts an essay quoting Goldberg, reason and rationality are thrown out the window. Kyle needs to find better quality reading material. Can we get a collection together and buy him a subscription to MAD Magazine?

jt

June 15th, 2011
2:11 pm

As a lawyer..,
a democrat…
and a product spewed forth from the Chicago political machine,
the only thing Obama understands is graft and corruption.
.
He should stick with that.
.
Leave the running of the country to Ron Paul.

Rob Woodall visited the troops last week, to brag about his free healthcare and to remind the troops that their healthcare will suck once they come home

June 15th, 2011
2:17 pm

OOOOooooooo Kyle. You are one funny guy!!!! I get it. A spoon for every worker. Now that’s funny!!!!!

Bart Abel

June 15th, 2011
2:21 pm

I want to add a couple of things to my previous comment.

First, I strongly suspect that the Milton Friedman anecdote is fiction. Please let me know if somebody has evidence to the contrary.

Second, given that Obama followed up by talking about the necessity of retraining workers, it’s clear that he’s not suggesting shovels, spoons, ripping out ATM machines, or anything even remotely analogous to that. So, the headline is unfair.

Obama, Kyle, Erickson, and all of us agree that the displacement of certain lines of work by new technology has been going on for centuries. I believe that we all agree that such transitions lead to higher unemployment in the short term. In addition, we all agree about the necessity of retraining workers.

Again, I’m unable to find any real substance in this criticism. If Obama somehow suggested that creative destruction is the primary cause of our current unemployment rate, then he deserves to get hit. But if he’s simply suggesting that its a contributing cause that can be mitigated with retraining, then he deserves praise.

Kyle Wingfield

June 15th, 2011
2:39 pm

I’m back.

GW @ 1:23: Once again, you mischaracterize being “interested in tax cuts” as thinking they’re a sufficient pro-growth policy. Find anything I’ve ever written that suggests as much.

retired early @ 1:36: I believe I used “lax” to describe monetary policy and “poorly done” to describe regulation. There’s a reason for that: Many of the regulators believed that the mandates they’d placed on banks (see the Basel II capital requirements) meant all was hunky-dorey.

Independent (sic) thinker @ 1:47: Did you bother to read my acknowledgment that globalization is a good example of a structural challenge?

MarkV @ 2:03: He was using it as example of why so many people are still unemployed. That’s what’s wrong with what he said — the number of bank tellers has not shrunk and is forecast to grow. No one is arguing that ATMs haven’t changed the way banks interact with their customers.

Independent thinker

June 15th, 2011
2:39 pm

I am waiting for one constructive suggestion from all the right wing talking heads and candidates on how they would create jobs except for repeating the mantra “lower taxes.” States are broke from tax incentives to companies, and except for Texas and a few other states their revenues keep dropping. If there is a Texas miracle that is working there, I have yet to hear it. All the belt tightening in this state has not created massive new jobs. So aside from calling Obama names like the Democrats did of Bush, what are the suggestions from the right wing geniuses? more unfunded wars? free Medicare drugs? unfunded mandates like EMTALA, EPA, ADA that unfairly burden private enterprise and states (all passed by Republican presidents)?? OR military funding Hallibuton, GE, General Dynamics, Boeing and other defense contractors all of whom are big Republican contributors??
I am sure Rush, Hannity, Beck, Coulter, Boortz et al. have the answers.
P.S. I voted for McCain – I have yet to hear a compoetent statement on the economy from him.

Kyle Wingfield

June 15th, 2011
2:45 pm

Bart @ 2:21: Watch the clip. Ann Curry asks him (paraphrasing from memory here) why unemployment remains so high and, after reminding us for the billionth time that we went through a deep recession, he chooses these examples of the structural challenges we face.

I agree creative destruction is a necessary part of a strong, sustainable economy, but my impression from the interview is that Obama is complaining about it more than anything. Your mileage may vary.

dw

June 15th, 2011
3:05 pm

SORRY, but this topic is just plain WEAK. Your really gonna bash Obama for saying something that is for the most part true?

GW

June 15th, 2011
3:11 pm

Oh Please, Kyle. Are you playing hide and seek with your philosophical views. You proclaim that you have NEVER declared tax cuts as a SUFFICIENT component in your grand scheme. Do you also claim that tax cuts are not a NECESSARY component. Come on now, Ryan up. Tell us all about how tax cuts will propel us to 2.8% unemployment or is it 2.8% unemployment will propel us to even more tax cuts.

Bart Abel

June 15th, 2011
3:22 pm

Thanks Kyle.

But if you watch the clip again, you’ll see that the person conducting the interview did not ask why unemployment remains so high. She first pointed out that since the recovery began, employers have spent 2 percent more on hiring people and 26 percent more on purchasing equipment. She also added that corporations are making record profits. It was in that context that she asked why he hasn’t “been able to convince businesses” to hire more people.

Obama’s response responded to the context of her question. She didn’t ask, why is unemployment so high? She asked, why are businesses that are making record profits spending so much more on machinery relative to hiring more people?

GW

June 15th, 2011
3:26 pm

Did Breitbart send you that clip with instructions on what portion of it to listen to?

Kyle Wingfield

June 15th, 2011
3:29 pm

GW: What I have said is necessary, from a tax perspective, is a tax code that’s predictable (i.e. not threatening every few years to raise taxes), non-punitive (i.e., rates not so high as to discourage work or investment, and preferably as flat as possible) and simple (i.e., not larded with breaks and credits and deductions that distort decision-making and reward those who can spend time/money to “work” the tax laws).

The government can, in theory, stimulate the economy over the medium term by fixing a tax code that’s unpredictable, punitive and/or complicated (right now, the corporate tax code runs afoul of these guidelines the worst imo). And it can, in theory, stimulate it in the short term by cutting taxes to put more money in consumers’ or businesses’ hands (a more efficient way of doing what government spending programs try to accomplish). But, as with just about anything, adjusting tax policy has diminishing returns at some point.

Sorry if that doesn’t fit your caricatured “Bush cut taxes why doesn’t everybody have a job?” attack line.

What??

June 15th, 2011
3:37 pm

Kyle-
But, as with just about anything, adjusting tax policy has diminishing returns at some point.

But with that being said, why is it the republican mantra to always decrease the tax rate. At some point, the lower rate would have a diminishing return as well. And to your bigger point, why has the economy grown at higher rates than the present rate. Clinton enjoyed a boom. Reagan enjoyed a boom and he didn’t lower rate to 28% until 1986.

And after listening to the tape..at best your point is a gross misrepresentation of his statements.

Don't Tread

June 15th, 2011
3:52 pm

Another shining example of why “community organizer” is not a sufficient prerequisite for being President.

Aquagirl

June 15th, 2011
4:10 pm

the number of bank tellers has not shrunk and is forecast to grow.

Unless a job market is really under collapse, the ABSOLUTE numbers should grow, unless our population is dropping. C’mon, Kyle, don’t write a column in the morning about how young people are stupid and then act like you don’t understand this point. I’ll give you a backhand complement by saying you’re deliberately overlooking this. :)

From the evil gub’mint Labor Bureau—

“Employment of tellers is expected to grow more slowly than average. (emphasis mine.) To attract customers, banks are opening new branch offices in a variety of locations, such as grocery stores, and keeping their branches open longer during the day and on weekends. Both of these trends are expected to result in some job growth for tellers,particularly those who work part time.
Job prospects. Job prospects for tellers are expected to be favorable. Most job openings will arise from growth and from the need to replace the many tellers who transfer to other occupations.”

So, we have slower than normal growth, more part-time, more physical relocation and more non-traditional hours. The last three are a killer for anyone who is trying to have a “real” job, especially if they have children.

This is a very clear example of what people face: a couple of decades ago, this was a job where you could get a good start. Two people who married and started in these jobs could work their way up the ladder and end up in the middle class. Not any more.

MarkV

June 15th, 2011
4:10 pm

Kyle Wingfield @2:39 pm: Kyle, First of al, you had written that the statement was not true. It was. It is not about the change of interaction with the bank. The people who are using the ATMs, and there are millions of them, would otherwise use tellers. The fact that the number of tellers is still growing does not mean that in the absence of ATMs, there would not have to be still more tellers to take care of the customers. Therefore, Obama’s example is quit correct.

GW

June 15th, 2011
4:14 pm

I don’t work for the Koch Heritage Foundation, Kyle. That spiel about tax cuts and a 2.8% unemployment rate is not of my making. In fact, it sounds more like a theory that you and your fellow Republicans/Libertarians continue to adhere to via Ryan’s Roadmap. As for an attack line, Kyle. Really. Is that the best diversion you have. Republicans use[d] the claim that lower tax cuts would pay for themselves via lower unemployment rates, etc., in order to push through those Bush tax cuts, not I. Nice try though.

GW

June 15th, 2011
4:21 pm

And Kyle, you and I both know that there is only one tax code that is truly predictable — a non-existent one. That is why you require a predictable one. Admit it, Kyle. You want to eliminate government and eliminating taxes is your means to an end. Ayn Rand is your heroin[e]. You’re hooked.