Robert Oak's blog

Must Read Posts - Sometimes you just can't say it better for 12.02.09

On The Economic Populist you might have noticed the middle column. We try to list other sites and blogs who have exceptional insight and writing on what is happening in the U.S. economy.

Sometimes though, one cannot say it better but miss those who did.

Must Read #1

James Hamilton, over at Econbrowser has a easy to read, lots of graphs analysis post on some recent reports on auto sales, home sales, ADP jobs report in Anemic Recovery. If I wrote up my own thoughts on many of these reports, it would be almost identical so check out his site. Here's one:

11/09 auto sales

I'm seeing the same story in new home sales. These are up on a seasonally adjusted basis mostly because they had previously been so very low, not because the market is remotely back to normal.

Burning Ben

There is a huge push to not confirm Federal Reserve Chair Ben Bernanke going on at this moment.

My problem with all of this activity is the Federal Reserve Chair is nominated by the President of the United States. frying pan fire Is a Bernanke alternative on the level of JP Morgan Chase Jamie Dimon, who is being considered to replace Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, in the pipeline?

Will we go from frying pan to fire in not confirming Helicopter Ben?

To date, no financial reforms, including the Federal Reserve reforms, have even passed Congress. Isn't the point of all of this to never give another Alan Greenspan that level of power over the United States Financial system and policy?

Just sayin'.

NACA Save the Dream Mortgage Help Tour

Mother Jones reporter Andy Kroll has gotten down and personal with desperate homeowners. In the illusion of recovery Kroll witnesses people showing up for free help from a group I've never heard of, the NACA.

Currently the NACA is touring the country with free help for distressed homeowners in the Save the Dream program. Current Pit stop is Charlotte, NC. Here is Kroll's account from the NACA mortgage help tour at San Francisco's Cow Palace:

What do you want to see in a jobs program?

Manufacture This has a blog post, What do you think a jobs bill should say? Good question. While they leave an email address to send in ideas, I thought we might post our ideas into the public sphere.

Leave your policy and legislation wish list in a comment and I will update the post with suggestions.

Here is what I would like to see:

  • Cancel all State and Federal offshore outsourced contracts. Bring those jobs back.
  • Immediate freeze on all guest worker Visas.
  • Mandatory Expansion of Nursing Schools with above market value Professor Salaries. Students must be permanent residents, U.S. citizens.

Friday Movie Night - Frontline - The Card Game

hot buttered popcorn It's Friday Night! Party Time!   Time to relax, put your feet up on the couch, lay back, and watch some detailed videos on economic policy!


Frontline has done it again with another great documentary. The Card Game, perfect for Black Friday, brings us up to date on lobbyists efforts to stop a Consumer Financial Production Agency and also overviews the credit card companies' role in the financial crisis. Lowell Bergman produced this documentary. He also made The History of the Credit Card.

Friday Movie Night - The Yes Men

hot buttered popcorn It's Friday Night! Party Time!   Time to relax, put your feet up on the couch, lay back, and watch some detailed videos on economic policy!


This week's films are by The Yes Men. These guys are a scream. They walk right into organizations like the WTO and give incredible phony presentations, which believe it or not, many in the audience just nod, approve and praise.

The Yes Men Fix the World

China - The Ultimate Protectionist

When you hear how the United States doesn't want to be protectionist, please remember that's just spin to ensure we do the will of China.

A new 2009 annual report by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission is out. Below are selected excerpts that should make the hair on your head stand on end in OMG panic.

China encourages foreign manufacturing to relocate to China and uses strict capital controls to keep the value of the RMB artificially low.