To the left is my first blog post – from 2009. It was an homage to Atrios and below is his first in 2002. Atrios was annonymous for the first years but was eventually revealed to be one Dr. Duncan Black, an economist in Philadelphia. From the first, he was the essential read in the lefty blogshpere. His pitch perfect (and utterly original) language inversions and his economy of words elevate him – in my lights – to Mark Twain and Will Rogers territory.
Today, he will post the winner (#1!!) in his top ten countdown to the Wanker of the Decade! Also today, I say to him congrats and thanks for a decade of delicious stuff.
(Wikipedia says the traditional gift for a Tenth Anniversary is tin/aluminum. Anyone know where I should send it?)
Atrios explains in just a few words what Democrats can’t seem to explain at all.
”It looks like the LTRO is having a positive contribution. Does it solve all of the problems sustainably? Probably not,” said Andrew Bosomworth, a senior portfolio manager at Pimco.
“At the end of the day, it comes down to growth — that’s what these countries need to keep their debt sustainable.”
Everybody has been getting it backwards.
1) Cut spending
When the reality is:
1) Increase spending
3) pay down debt
Just realized that this past Wednesday, Whatever Works turned two years old! Whoppeee!
My first post was ”Is this thing working?”.
(not original: lifted from the first post by Dr. Duncan Black, aka Atrios, on April 17, 2002)
First I saw lottsa oldies (my kind, not his) sprinkling his site and I thought, well okay, it’s a retro thing. But! But! Cometh this post, with one of my all time favoritest videos, which I first ran (and will again and again) after Governor Nojobsisbetterthanaunionjob of Wisconsin undertook union bashing – well, that is a step too far. I don’t care how famous is the Atrios, this video is mine, mine, mine!
From Atrios yesterday - this is going to be a real problem in our future. Are we even thinking about it? Are the folks we elect to think about such things thinking about it? Probably not. Guess we’ll just wait till granny’s pantry runs out and she says ‘now what?’.
Paratransit Is Going To Be Expensive
“I don’t know how universal this trend is, but suburbs are not well-equipped to provide transit services for those who can’t drive.“
. . . half a century later, suburban communities designed around the autombile are facing difficult questions.
What happens when many residents can no longer get behind the wheel?
Who will bear the costs of getting them to groceries, to doctors and to a host of other places?
“As they age, they need more services, and those suburbs are not designed for more services,” said McIlwain, of the Urban Land Institute.
This is why Atrios is one of the most successful bloggers in the whole blogging blogesphere. He has eyes to see.
I think in a very broad sense there is a generational shift between those who experienced the cities-in-decline decades and those experiencing the cities-kinda-sorta-getting-better-again decades. So much urban policy was directed at jobs-and-destinations, desperately trying to attract large employers and turning cities into urban theme parks for suburban visitors, with cultural and sporting events being the draw.
It’s looking uglier out there. A lot of the housing financing mess is beyond my ken, but I get this part – I’ll let Atrios (aka Dr. Black, a real economist) sum it up:
“Once we came to a point where servicers could make more money by foreclosing than not foreclosing, the game was over.”
It is apparently no longer necessary to even try to hide one’s crimes. After all, money must be made.
Atrios is brilliant. He hates the Afghan war as much as I do. And he really loathes Micahel O’Hanlon (like I do), he of the “I think this today – oh wait, it’s tomorrow – I don’t think that anymore” school of punditry. Today Atrios catches O’Hanlon saying:
At this moment, as we enter into perhaps the most crucial six months of the entire war, I hope and pray that President Obama will decide we cannot afford to be without the leadership of such an amazing American.
The acerbic Atrios gets it entirely right, when he adds: “Eight and a half years later we’re starting “the most crucial six months?”