Saturday, February 4, 2012

What Mattered This Week?

I'll start with the economic news, including of course the good jobs news for January. Remember as always that these numbers get revised, so everything is tentative, but certainly good economic news.

One week ago, I wasn't willing to rule out a realistic (but slim) chance that Mitt Romney could still lose the nomination. Now, it would take some sort of external shock. So that's something.

In international stuff, Syria again, and Iran, contain plenty of trouble for the US; meanwhile, we got the further confirmation that the US and coalition members are winding down Afghanistan a bit quicker than previously believed.

What am I missing, or wrong about? What do you think mattered this week?


  1. Norris in NYT reminds us that growth in Europe, Japan, US will continue to be slow. A long run thing, not about this election cycle, but important.

    Story out of Greece reminds us Europe may still decline into a recession that would spread and ruin Obama's chances. As well as possibly kicking the world down into depression. Boy did the dreamers at Maastricht fuck up.

    Maybe worth mentioning revived reports about Israel's bombing Iran.

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  3. I think a few things.

    1. The solid Romney victory in Florida made his nomination look hard to stop even if the race is far from over. Its hard to think of a candidate in his position that lost the nomination for his party.

    2. The pull of Romney in both directions showed a little wear. His comment regarding the poor showed that it will be tough for him to straddle the pull of the GOP base which is not unhappy saying dismissive things about the poor versus the wider electorate that may be less comfortable with such comments, even if not really fairly used against him. He needs to be acutely sensitive to this issue given that he is so well off.

    3. Gingrich doesn't do well being in favor of things. He is not an appealing individual in and of himself but rather makes a good puncher so long as he doesn't have to take too many punches. Its nice having him as the vigilante or the score-settler. Not so much as a parent or school principal. This comes across and when the heat dies down a little he looks out of control or clownish. He may get Adelson's help but the longer he stays in the better for the president.

    4. The job numbers helped a bit. The downside is that if things look up and then go the other direction just a touch, it becomes harder for the president.

    5. Facebook's ipo will overshadow many other stories and give us a backdrop of what's important (i.e. that the power of Facebook is not so insignificant even in comparison with the power of the president of the United States).

    6. The Komen/Planned Parenthood story shows that wedge issues may be less visible these days (social ones I mean) but with a little nudge they can add heat to the fire.

  4. Speaking of Adelson, isn't he based in Las Vegas? Why is it that in Nevada of all places, Gingrich had zero TV ads? Do you think Adelson has given up on him already?


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