The First 100 Days

Posted by Katherine | Tuesday, January 27th, 2009

Obama has one of the highest initial job-approval ratings (68%) of any post-WWII president. The flip side of it: The Expectations. Dave Rex Wood is a software engineer and enthusiastic amateur photographer in Colorado. On inauguration day, he revived the post-election Message for Obama phenomenon and sent six more requests to ...

A Few Reasons for the Economic Stimulus Package

Posted by Katherine | Friday, January 9th, 2009

Yesterday, in his first big policy speech since November 4th, Obama waded in forcefully on the economy, pressing Congress to hop to it on economic-stimulus legislation. The context is grim. The holiday shopping season was dismal-to-possibly-bankrupting for many retailers. Obama will inherit a record-breaking $1.2 trillion budget deficit for the year ...

Obama’s Public-Works Plan

Posted by Katherine | Tuesday, December 9th, 2008

[woodleywonderworks / Flickr] Over the weekend, Obama outlined his vision for a large, job-boosting investment in public infrastructure. Andrew Samwick is a Dartmouth economics prof who studies retirement and was chief economist of the President's Council of Economic Advisors in 2003-2004. He likes Obama's plan even though he doesn't see job creation ...

Auto Bailout: That’s Not Amore

Posted by Katherine | Monday, December 8th, 2008

The Big Three must be perking up a bit at the now-promising bailout rumblings. [Update 9 Dec 08: I should have noted that Obama supports the loan and will inherit the Detroit problem come January.] Pat McDermott (aka coolgeek2751) calls himself a "rock climbing jazz piano playing programmer." He's pretty fervently ...

Belt Tightening

Posted by Katherine | Saturday, November 29th, 2008

On the economy front, this week brought the Citigroup bailout and the addition of Paul Volker and Austan Goolsbee to Obama's new Economic Recovery Advisory Board. Meanwhile, across America, people and businesses are cinching their belts. Adrian Lai in NYC spotted this "Recession Sale" on the streets of the Big Apple: [thedrun ...

Detroit Bailout

Posted by Katherine | Thursday, November 20th, 2008

Things are not looking good on the bailout front for GM, Chrysler, and Ford. Economist Paul Krugman argues that we should put aside gripes about private jets and multi-million-dollar CEO pay because a $25B "bridge loan" to Detroit would protect 1-3 million jobs. Twenty-four-year-old Lennon just got a degree in ...

The Maverick Brand

Posted by Katherine | Monday, November 3rd, 2008

DSquid1901, or Bryan Boyce, is a San Francisco film and video artist. (Featured before here.) He has a talent for satire. In this citizen ad, he takes on McCain's "maverick" brand and ties it mischievously to "spreading the wealth." (Thanks, Sarolta Cump.) Great soundtrack.

Redistribution of Wealth

Posted by Katherine | Monday, October 27th, 2008

[ninjawil / Flickr] The Drudge-induced bloggy craze today was some audio of a 2001 interview in which Obama talks about redistribution of wealth. It was circulated as a rather charged video (see here) posted by Naked Emperor News, which is part of the NObama network. McCain began calling his rival "Barack the ...

In Memoriam to the Boom Economy

Posted by Katherine | Friday, October 24th, 2008

The stock market dove again this morning. Earlier this month, nolionsinengland noticed this memorial in London near the Bank of England. It was created by the artist K Guy and, nolionsinengland said via email, "lasted less than a week." It seems pretty clear that most of the world -- not just ...

A Nerd He Can Believe In

Posted by Katherine | Wednesday, October 22nd, 2008

New York hip-hop vlogger Jay Smooth -- a ballotvoxregular featured here and here -- usually has something to say about whatever the rest of us are talking about. Only he's better at it. This is Jay on the confusion of the economy. He'd like to have "the annoying smart guy" at ...

Early Voter in North Carolina

Posted by Katherine | Wednesday, October 22nd, 2008

Thirty-year-old Jenifer from North Carolina stood in line at her local library a few days ago to vote early for Obama. Here she is in her car just after casting her ballot -- and explaining with visible emotion what that meant to her as a moment of history, an action ...

Stock Market, Meet Sewer

Posted by Katherine | Monday, October 20th, 2008

The stock market rose today, but not enough to overpower the forceful message in this video by globetrotting street artist ABOVE. It shows California graffiti of the market taking a nosedive... into the sewer. (Thanks to volunteer curator Roshan Abraham.) [ABOVE / Vimeo] One of the big questions for undecided voters, of ...

What Does “Middle Class” Mean, Anyway?

Posted by Katherine | Friday, October 10th, 2008

Pseudopop (featured previously here) mulls over many things with pen and paper. Here it's the middle class. Because of the Wall Street crisis, it's become central to the election (and to campaign spats); but what, pseudopop wonders, does the term actually mean? [pseudopop / Flickr] That little infinity sign on the income ...

On the Economy: How to Make It Through

Posted by Katherine | Friday, October 10th, 2008

Tighten your belt [reallyboring / Flickr] Yolo Cowboy is willing to say it more starkly than either Obama or McCain seems to: Americans will feel the effects of the financial crisis. He believes that "reality is what we must deal with," fair or not. Yolo Cowboy lives in Esparto, California, with one ...

Financial Crisis 101

Posted by Katherine | Tuesday, October 7th, 2008

If you don't have time for This American Life's Giant Pool of Money or Another Frightening Show About the Economy, then Hank Green (an ecogeek) has boiled down much of the financial crisis into four short minutes. To spice things up, he wears different hats. (Thanks, Sue Salinger.) All clear now? ...

Vice Presidential Debate

Posted by Katherine | Sunday, October 5th, 2008

[Bright_Star / Flickr] If you weren't among the 70 million or so who watched the blockbuster VP debate live (not counting those who streamed it), you can see or read it here. By all accounts the night was primarily a referendum on Sarah Palin, so these comments focus largely on her: The ...

Bailout Planners, Listen Up!

Posted by Katherine | Thursday, October 2nd, 2008

Audio engineer +48volt has a plan. For the Wall Street problem. (Or maybe s/he photographed someone else's plan.) It's one that even the anti-bailout protesters might agree to: you still offer a bailout underwritten by taxpayers... but there's a sliding scale at work. (Thanks, Sue Salinger.) [+48volt / Flickr] This is apparently ...

Citizens Protest the Bailout Plan

Posted by Katherine | Thursday, October 2nd, 2008

Last week, citizens everywhere from New York to Albuquerque to Burbank protested the $700B bailout proposal (thanks, Sue Salinger and James Mills). The common theme: how does this help us? Ryan in Fargo would much rather, thank you very much, have a personal assist from the Fed/Treasury. So he made ...

Financial Crisis: What We Can Agree On

Posted by Katherine | Thursday, October 2nd, 2008

Sue Salinger found this Minneapolis graffiti photographed by Ian, who says, "It's the little, odd things that make my day." Well this little, odd burst of free speech expresses something about Wall Street that surely we all can agree on: [The Joy Of The Mundane / Flickr] It's of course harder to ...

Media and Gas Shortages After Gustav and Ike

Posted by Katherine | Friday, September 26th, 2008

Refinery problems due to hurricanes Gustav and Ike caused significant gas shortages across the southeast earlier this week. AMPinto0123 recorded the gas line at a Costco in Nashville -- the only station of eight in the vicinity that had any fuel for sale. (Hat tip to Sarolta Cump.) Houtopia of ...