Dow 11,000?

By Chris Mooney | April 5, 2010 8:58 am

It’s possible we may get there today, or soon as the recovery continues. The stock market hasn’t been that high since before it fell off a cliff in October of 2008.

So, cast your votes, kids: Did Obama save the economy?

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Miscellaneous

Comments (18)

  1. Too early to tell I would say, and assigning causality is always dangerous. Although things seem to be getting better.

  2. Maybe the bigger question is whether he won the battle but lost the war. In other words, is perpetual industrial growth, as measured by stock price performance or by GNP possible with the ecological constraints on our little blue org?

    I wonder how much of the stock market recovery is related to the performance of health care stocks, especially those of companies like Wellpoint and their practices of raising rates and giving executives multi-million / yr compensation. Wellpoint just raised their CEO’s compensation by ~50%.

    So, yes, Obama appears to have saved the economy for 2012, and while it may end up getting him re-elected, I am not sure that it is all positive until the 7th Generation.

  3. GM

    Is this blog supposed to be about science or about the economy and the pseudoscientific farce called economics that’s supposed to justify it?

    “Recovery” is meaningless unless the structural problems of society are addressed, and those just so happen to be closely tied to the very existence of things as the Dow

  4. Guy

    Economics is a social science. It is certainly not a pseudoscience like astrology. Without it we would be in the dark as to well our economy is doing as a whole. We would also have no estimate of where things will be in the future because of current policy decisions.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economics

    I think it is too complicated a matter to attribute it’s success or failure to one man. Things do seem to be looking up lately.

  5. David

    I say yes. He deserves full credit.

    Not because of any of his policies, but for better or worse, whoever is in the office gets the blame or credit.

    The tough question is whether the state of the stock market really reflects the state of the economy other than a general “mood” of the people buying and selling stocks.

  6. Beyond helping keep the banks afloat so that people didn’t lose their life’s savings, did *anything* the governments of western nations do help the economy? (Aside from the fat-cat bankers with their disgusting bonuses that is.)

  7. Walker

    CRE collapse. Underlying statistics to employment numbers looking shaky. Housing prices downturning again.

    8-ball says “Ask again later”

    #1: The stock market rise has been because of a bubble in financial stocks, due to our continued commitment to too-big-to-fail.

  8. GM

    3. Guy Says:
    April 5th, 2010 at 9:59 am
    Economics is a social science. It is certainly not a pseudoscience like astrology.

    It is a pseudoscience because none of the underlying assumption have ever been shown to bear any relevance to reality.

    Anyway, this is not the point, the point is that the author of the blog promotes himself as a global warming advocate, yet he cheers up that Dow is at 11,000. Which means that he hasn’t yet put 2 and 2 together and figured out that you can’t grow the economy and combat climate change because it is growth that causes climate change. Which means that we have some very incompetent people in charge of communicating climate science

  9. Guy

    @GM,

    “It is a pseudoscience because none of the underlying assumption have ever been shown to bear any relevance to reality. ”

    Then why did they award the Nobel prize to an economist?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S6ogQ3bhnfQ

    “Which means that he hasn’t yet put 2 and 2 together and figured out that you can’t grow the economy and combat climate change because it is growth that causes climate change.”

    No. It’s green-house gas emissions that contribute to climate change. We will have to grow the economy in order to rebuild our energy infrastructure. If we halt all economic development now we would be stuck with fossil-fuels. It’s a recipe for failure.

  10. John Kwok

    What recovery? I think one ought not read much into the Dow Jones’s ascent to 11,000. It could quickly fall, given the current state of the United States economy. And even if one were an optimist, the sad fact remains that there is an offical unemployment statistic hovering around 10% – and probably much higher than the Federal Government would care to admit – which is bound to become worse due to the ballooning deficit (thanks primarily to the Axelrod – Obama Regime’s determination to enact its Progressive Socialist Democratic policies), higher taxes and substantially new and greater Federal regulations designed to limit both states’s and individual citizens’s rights.

  11. GM

    9. Guy Says:
    April 5th, 2010 at 12:25 pm
    @GM,
    “It is a pseudoscience because none of the underlying assumption have ever been shown to bear any relevance to reality. ”
    Then why did they award the Nobel prize to an economist?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S6ogQ3bhnfQ

    It is the Nobel prize for Economy that you are referring to, which wasn’t even among the original prizes to be given and was piggy-backed to them in 1963. I don’t see the point

    “Which means that he hasn’t yet put 2 and 2 together and figured out that you can’t grow the economy and combat climate change because it is growth that causes climate change.”
    No. It’s green-house gas emissions that contribute to climate change. We will have to grow the economy in order to rebuild our energy infrastructure. If we halt all economic development now we would be stuck with fossil-fuels. It’s a recipe for failure.

    I continue to be amazed by the inability of people to see causality more than one linkage level deep. Yes, it’s GHG emissions that drive climate change. What causes GHG emissions to? Economic activity. What causes growth of GHG emissions ? Growth of economic activity. It’s not that complicated

    It is too late at this point to rebuild the economy and infrastructure because it is not possible to power an economy of that size with renewables. There simply isn’t that much energy out there or it is too diffuse to be harvested, and the EROEI will never be 100:1 as it was for fossil fuels in the beginning. And it is even less possible to continue growth. However, it is growth that we have based our whole societal structure on, and without growth, our society collapses.

    Which is why when I see people, who are supposed to be communicating environmental awareness to the public, being completely clueless about these not so complicated truths, my blood pressure rises

  12. Cheyenne

    You gauge the health of the overall economy by looking at the Dow average?

  13. Eric the Leaf

    Oil leading the way! At least I’m making money on that.

  14. Eric the Leaf

    Guy,
    You make some good points. Savings has been declining for the past 25-30 years at the same time debt has been growing exponentially and now is greater, percentage wise, than it has been in the past several hundred years. The economy must continue to grow, and grow exponentially, or this house of cards will collapse. So, just when economic growth must now be faster and more robust than at any time in virtually the history of the world, we now are also faced with stagnation or depletion of critical energy supplies needed to sustain what otherwise would already be exceptional growth. Nor is it just a problem with oil, but with many other critical resources: lithium, uranium, phosphorus, gallium, zinc, copper, freshwater, topsoil, etc. We’re on the verge of “running low” on stuff needed to grow, particularly energy. You’re correct, renewables are not up to the task. This is why the “recovery” cannot be sustained.

    Growth is our god.

  15. Guy

    “Yes, it’s GHG emissions that drive climate change. What causes GHG emissions to? Economic activity. What causes growth of GHG emissions ? Growth of economic activity. It’s not that complicated”

    Incorrect. It’s the continued use of fossil fuels to drive the economic growth that results in more GHG emissions. It does take capital to grow alternative energy production needed to replace fossil fuels. Where do you think all that capital is going to come from?

  16. GM

    It takes capital in a social system where everything is thought of in terms of money. If that was not the case and we were thinking in terms of energy and entropy, and decisions were not made by the “Market” or through some pseudodemocratic process, it would be different and we would have transitioned long ago (which of course, would have involved no more growth). At this point it is an absolutely necessary thing to do, but it will not prevent the catastrophe as it will take several decades to do it while we have one at most, and it is not possible to drive the current economy on renewables alone, let alone the projected economy of 2050 with another 3 billion people and everyone living Western lifestyle. Right now there is no working solution that does not involved end of growth and degrowth, of all the quantities in the PAT equation, as unpleasant as it is

  17. ThomasL

    What do you all expect with a few trillion in government manipulation?

    This has to be the funniest post ever.

  18. John Kwok

    Here’s a recent piece of commentary which rejects the notion that the economy – including the Dow Jones – has seen an ObamaCare “bounce”:

    http://blogs.ajc.com/kyle-wingfield/2010/04/05/still-waiting-for-that-obamacare-bounce/?cxntfid=blogs_kyle_wingfield

    I’ll let you arrive at your own conclusions, though am sure you can strongly suspect what mine are.

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About Chris Mooney

Chris is a science and political journalist and commentator and the author of three books, including the New York Times bestselling The Republican War on Science--dubbed "a landmark in contemporary political reporting" by Salon.com and a "well-researched, closely argued and amply referenced indictment of the right wing's assault on science and scientists" by Scientific American--Storm World, and Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future, co-authored by Sheril Kirshenbaum. They also write "The Intersection" blog together for Discover blogs. For a longer bio and contact information, see here.

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