Video: Olby talks about “federal budget debt”, gets everything wrong

posted at 11:36 am on February 10, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Newsbusters jumps all over Keith Olbermann for one of his Worst Person in the World segments, this time slamming Rep. Marsha Blackburn while defending the explosion of deficit spending in the Obama administration. Unfortunately, Olby manages to mangle just about every fact in the process, with the exception of getting Blackburn’s name right:

KEITH OLBERMANN, HOST: That`s next, but first tonight`s worst persons in the world. The bronze to Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee. You`ll remember, the record setter for longest monotone question to the president at their meeting. Her new debt solution? Allowing younger Americans to privatize their Social Security accounts, where they can get wiped out the next time the mortgage industry or some other form of legalized gambling wipes out another chunk of the economy. By the way, federal budget debt is a good thing in a recession. It`s not a bad thing. As a percentage of Gross Domestic Product, it`s about the same as it was in 1970, as it is right now, far less than it was throughout the Reagan administration.

Olby does get one other thing right, or at least in the ballpark: both parties have argued at different times that deficit spending in a recession is a necessary evil, but not a good practice for long-term strategy. Some of our friends on the Right may have forgotten that George W. Bush made the same argument in 2001 after the 9/11 attacks and the financial hit it created. But even John Maynard Keynes, the father of that school of economic thought, warned that deficit spending could not be allowed to outstrip the government’s ability to service and eventually retire the debt rolled up by a nation spending its way out of recession.

Otherwise, Olby manages to get just about everything else wrong.  There is no such thing as “federal budget debt”; there is federal debt, which is a cumulative amount of all the deficit spending from our entire history, and there is an annual federal budget deficit.  The latter as a percentage of GDP in 1970 was 0.3% according to the OMB.  The highest that number ever got in the Reagan administration was 6%, in 1983, which isn’t a good number, but hardly compares to the 9.9% it is for 2009 or the projected 10.6% it will be for 2010.

Insofar as federal debt is concerned, Newsbusters has that breakdown as well.  Bear in mind that since this is a cumulative number, the impact of one budget is necessarily limited.  With that in mind, the debt as a percentage of annual GDP was 37.6% in 1970.  By the end of the Reagan years, it was 53.1% (Reagan signed off on the 1989 federal budget), up from 32.5% at the end of the Carter presidency.  By the end of the Clinton presidency, it had risen only to 56.4%.  Considering that the last budget George W Bush signed was for FY2008, one can reasonably lay at his feet the hike to 69.2%.  Barack Obama signed off on the FY2009 budget thanks to Democratic keep-away using continuing resolutions, and the estimated GDP percentage of federal debt is now 94.3% — and using Obama’s budget estimates, will continue escalating to 102.6% of GDP by 2015.

None of these numbers are especially difficult to retrieve, by the way.  Apparently, Keith Olbermann is less of a journalist than most bloggers, who understand how to Google for actual data rather than pulling numbers out of one’s nether regions.


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At least he didn’t sniff his fingers today.

lorien1973 on February 10, 2010 at 11:38 AM

They didn’t teach economics at cow college.

Cicero43 on February 10, 2010 at 11:39 AM

By the way, federal budget debt is a good thing in a recession. It`s not a bad thing.

See: Harding vs. Hoover/FDR

mankai on February 10, 2010 at 11:39 AM

Apparently, Keith Olbermann is less of a journalist than most bloggers, who understand how to Google for actual data rather than pulling numbers out of one’s nether regions.

*my eyes* *my eyes*

ted c on February 10, 2010 at 11:40 AM

Olby’s idea of journalism is reading a Daily Kos thread.

Speedwagon82 on February 10, 2010 at 11:41 AM

Good thing only 3 people saw this.

Knucklehead on February 10, 2010 at 11:42 AM

Looks like Olby is sh*tting in his chair in that thread picture.

WashJeff on February 10, 2010 at 11:42 AM

Apparently, Keith Olbermann is less of a journalist than most bloggers, who understand how to Google for actual data rather than pulling numbers out of one’s nether regions.

I’m reminded of the current USPS ad slogan:

Olberman: If it [my bogus numbers] fits, it ships.

BuckeyeSam on February 10, 2010 at 11:42 AM

What do you expect, MSNBC is the Air America of television.

Bishop on February 10, 2010 at 11:43 AM

Good thing only 3 people saw this.

Knucklehead on February 10, 2010 at 11:42 AM

32 more to catch-up to Newsday on-line!

OT: Heard on the radion this morning…now racism charges are starting to enter the equation for picking the Dem. Lt. Gov. candidate. Funny stuff.

WashJeff on February 10, 2010 at 11:44 AM

Dude looks like he straining a stool in that photo.

enoughalready on February 10, 2010 at 11:44 AM

The lo mein I had for supper last night is smarter than this doofus.

SouthernGent on February 10, 2010 at 11:44 AM

The moral of the story is that Democrat Congresses raise the debt and deficit at much, much higher rates than Republican Congresses could only dream of. Well, besides the whole Republicans balancing the budget and Clinton taking credit for it…

uknowmorethanme on February 10, 2010 at 11:45 AM

This is why I can’t figure out why there are people out there who think Olbermann is some seasoned knowledgable investigative journalist.

This guy is nothing less than a has-been football commentator who spends more time on his so-called news hour manipulating and twisting the news than he does reporting it, and he does so in a overly biased/left-leaning foaming-at-the-mouth manner that is almost nauseating to listen to.

But then again, this is MS-NBC, The Place For Insanity.

pilamaye on February 10, 2010 at 11:45 AM

We’re just not on the right drugs to be able to understand Olby’s magical thinking. He’s operating from a different chemistry, where it all makes sense.

RBMN on February 10, 2010 at 11:45 AM

Dude looks like he straining a stool in that photo.

enoughalready on February 10, 2010 at 11:44 AM

Less is more sometimes.

thomasaur on February 10, 2010 at 11:46 AM

the estimated GDP percentage of federal debt is now 94.3% — and using Obama’s budget estimates, will continue escalating to 102.6% of GDP by 2015.

2015, doomsday.

rukiddingme on February 10, 2010 at 11:47 AM

They need to fire his teleprompter.

Vashta.Nerada on February 10, 2010 at 11:47 AM

To me, Olbermann is still the guy in a camel-hair sportscoat with a two-minute report on LA Raiders football.

Chris_Balsz on February 10, 2010 at 11:47 AM

What do you expect, MSNBC is the Air America of television.

MSNBC: Like Air America…only without the good ratings.

Bruce in NH on February 10, 2010 at 11:47 AM

Commenting on the fact that there’s no logic or accuracy in an Olbermann rant is like saying that the sky is blue.

CityFish on February 10, 2010 at 11:47 AM

Speedwagon82 on February 10, 2010 at 11:41 AM

+1

cmsinaz on February 10, 2010 at 11:48 AM

Olby’s idea of journalism is reading a Daily Kos thread.

Speedwagon82 on February 10, 2010 at 11:41 AM

That’s essentially what his show is. The Media Matters website is downloaded into his teleprompter. And since that group has never been known for its accuracy, it’s not surprising that Uberskank would whiff so badly on this one.

Doughboy on February 10, 2010 at 11:50 AM

The lo mein I had for supper last night is smarter than this doofus.

SouthernGent on February 10, 2010 at 11:44 AM

Now, or then?

MarkTheGreat on February 10, 2010 at 11:50 AM

pilamaye on February 10, 2010 at 11:45 AM

amazing isn’t it? my father loves his show…we’ve gotten into some pretty good arguments over olby’s rants…

cmsinaz on February 10, 2010 at 11:51 AM

Apparently, Keith Olbermann is less of a journalist than most bloggers, who understand how to Google for actual data rather than pulling numbers out of one’s nether regions.

Olby has hair to attend to, Ed does not. ;-)

WashJeff on February 10, 2010 at 11:51 AM

Wait til his taxes go up next year and his deficit increases. Wonder how many of these idiots handle their own personal finances like they profess the govmint should.

Kissmygrits on February 10, 2010 at 11:53 AM

Now, or then?

MarkTheGreat on February 10, 2010 at 11:50 AM

Heh. Now.

SouthernGent on February 10, 2010 at 11:53 AM

They didn’t teach economics at cow college.

Cicero43 on February 10, 2010 at 11:39 AM

Yeah, but according to KO, it was an “Ivy League” Cow College.

Get it straight.

BierManVA on February 10, 2010 at 11:54 AM

Has anyone SERIOUSLY expected Olby to be FACTual? I stopped paying attention to him long ago.
In fact, I rarely watch any TV at all anymore since it is all clearly claptrap and manure for Liberal imaginations.

IanTrouble on February 10, 2010 at 11:56 AM

Since when have facts ever mattered to Bathtub Boy?

kingsjester on February 10, 2010 at 11:57 AM

None of these numbers are especially difficult to retrieve, by the way.

Unless these numbers are written on Obama’s a$$ cheeks,Olbermann has no chance of seeing them at all.

Baxter Greene on February 10, 2010 at 11:58 AM

2015, doomsday.

rukiddingme on February 10, 2010 at 11:47 AM

President Rubio won’t let it happen.

mankai on February 10, 2010 at 11:59 AM

Yeah, but according to KO, it was an “Ivy League” Cowsh*t College.

Get it straight.

BierManVA on February 10, 2010 at 11:54 AM

Even better.

NathanG on February 10, 2010 at 12:01 PM

None of these numbers are especially difficult to retrieve, by the way. Apparently, Keith Olbermann is less of a journalist than most bloggers, who understand how to Google for actual data rather than pulling numbers out of one’s nether regions.

Every part of Olbermann is a nether region. From where else could he pull those numbers?

SKYFOX on February 10, 2010 at 12:01 PM

Anything having to do with KO is pointless. Please stop.

The guy is a doofus.

Reminds me of the line from Casablanca:

Peter Lorre: “You despise me, don’t you Rick?”

Humphrey Bogart: “If I bothered to think about you I would.”

Bruno Strozek on February 10, 2010 at 12:01 PM

So that’s why Olby’s arse is so large? It holds a large repository of incorrect data that he retrieves while on air. That and too many trips to the buffet.

Philly on February 10, 2010 at 12:02 PM

Maybe he keeps his baseball card collection there too.

Philly on February 10, 2010 at 12:03 PM

President Rubio won’t let it happen.
mankai on February 10, 2010 at 11:59 AM

Stirring the pot, I like it.

Bishop on February 10, 2010 at 12:03 PM

We’re just not on the right drugs to be able to understand Olby’s magical thinking. RBMN at 11:45 AM

And, we don’t live in Nether-Netherland

ziggyville on February 10, 2010 at 12:04 PM

Has anyone asked Olbie if he runs his own finances the way Washington runs the country’s? He could probably be up on all kinds of criminal charges if he does.

Liam on February 10, 2010 at 12:04 PM

His target demographic doesn\’t want facts to get in the way of a good deluded rant.

brak on February 10, 2010 at 12:10 PM

Who needs facts when you can just make stuff up?

tommer74 on February 10, 2010 at 12:10 PM

Olberman dumber than the rock he crawled out from

Daveyardbird on February 10, 2010 at 12:13 PM

But he read it on Kos! It MUST be right!

misterpeasea on February 10, 2010 at 12:13 PM

The nations Assets grew faster than liabilities under Reagan

jp on February 10, 2010 at 12:13 PM

He is irrelevant. Why give him any publicity. He is a coat tail rider. He tries to ride the publicity waves of Limbaugh, O’reilly and Beck. He is a blathering moron with zero credibility.

rjoco1 on February 10, 2010 at 12:14 PM

Remember when Buzz Aldrin punched that one tool in the face? Yeah, that was cool…

yubley on February 10, 2010 at 12:20 PM

I suggest to Captain Dumbass that he tune in to Glenn Beck and just STFU and listen. How in the hell did this mediocre sports commentator ever land the job he holds? God Almighty!
His obnoxious condescension is nearly as unpalatable as the AAnointed One’s. Fortunately, I hardly ever watch MSNBC because of all of the lameos they have in their stable.

LarryG on February 10, 2010 at 12:20 PM

Give the guy a break, Ed… pulling things out of his nether regions is the most action he’s had in months.

greggriffith on February 10, 2010 at 12:20 PM

Congrats to Congresswoman Blackburn. If Olby hates her, I support her.

NebCon on February 10, 2010 at 12:21 PM

the estimated GDP percentage of federal debt is now 94.3% — and using Obama’s budget estimates, will continue escalating to 102.6% of GDP by 2015.

I don’t really see what the big deal is. If we just take a year off, and devote all of our national resources and productive capacity (including what we usually expend on wasteful extraneous things like food) to paying off the debt, we’ll be fine.

RINO in Name Only on February 10, 2010 at 12:21 PM

He’s got more pelosi in his nooks and crannies, than a squirrel has nuts.

bloggless on February 10, 2010 at 12:23 PM

They didn’t teach economics at cow college.

Cicero43 on February 10, 2010 at 11:39 AM

I take offense to your disparaging comment toward bovine.

PappaMac on February 10, 2010 at 12:25 PM

I simply don’t understand the focus on KO. He is the bottom of the barrel in ratings. He’s clearly so jumped the shark lately.

Frankly, it’s nearly uncomfortable to me to watch him struggle to find topics.

But then, I’m not one to enjoy other people’s failures in life.

AnninCA on February 10, 2010 at 12:25 PM

This man is a joke and he ruins Sunday night football.

ladyingray on February 10, 2010 at 12:32 PM

On the “cow college” front, you should have seen the battle I had with the revisionists on Wikipedia over that. We went back and forth-changing the diploma from “Cornell” to “Cornell College of Agriculture and Life Sciences”-for like a week until they locked the account and pulled the “education” section from the page.

If you ever have an hour or two to spare, I highly recommend starting a Wikipedia editor account and changing the lies around.

High, high comedy.

russcote on February 10, 2010 at 12:33 PM

Olberdork is a caricature of Yosemite Sam…without the class, of course.

AubieJon on February 10, 2010 at 12:33 PM

“Never let the facts get in the way of a good story joke attack!

rockbend on February 10, 2010 at 12:46 PM

What a silly man.

Mason on February 10, 2010 at 12:47 PM

Barack Obama signed off on the FY2009 budget thanks to Democratic keep-away using continuing resolutions, and the estimated GDP percentage of federal debt is now 94.3% — and using Obama’s budget estimates, will continue escalating to 102.6% of GDP by 2015.

Does anybody know where they put the “panic” button?

Count to 10 on February 10, 2010 at 12:48 PM

They didn’t teach economics at cow college.

Cicero43 on February 10, 2010 at 11:39 AM

I’m totally stealing that. I’ll give you the credit though.

Russ

russcote on February 10, 2010 at 12:49 PM

Would anyone know this crapweasel is if HotAir stopped posting about him?

Wade on February 10, 2010 at 12:57 PM

Ed, I’m not sure how you got the 94.3% figure. It looks a bit high to me. Did you perchance put the real GDP figure, which is measured in 2005 dollars, in the denominator? Dividing $12.4 trillion by $14.5 trillion, I’m only getting 86%.

year_of_the_dingo on February 10, 2010 at 1:02 PM

Does Maxx Headroom still have an audience at MessNBC?

ErinF on February 10, 2010 at 1:05 PM

They didn’t teach economics at cow college.

Cicero43 on February 10, 2010 at 11:39 AM

Good one.

I hear that Mr. Ed was his English professor.

jdflorida on February 10, 2010 at 1:08 PM

I simply don’t understand the focus on KO. He is the bottom of the barrel in ratings. He’s clearly so jumped the shark lately.

AnninCA on February 10, 2010 at 12:25 PM

Ergo, if he’s not at the bottom of the barrel, it’s OK to focus on him?

Well then, prepare to be pleasantly surprised: He hasn’t dropped below Red Eye yet!!! Ergo, bombs away.

And in light of this shocking fact, don’t you think you need to ease up on people a bit? ;)

Yes, he may eventually get to the very bottom, but calling a bottom here is a tad premature IMHO.

RD on February 10, 2010 at 1:14 PM

A question for anyone.

How much of our GDP is now Government spending? Federal, State and local as a comparision to the previous decades.

This isn’t a gotcha question, I don’t know the answer but wouldn’t be surprised to see that it is dramatically higher than any period with the exception of WWII.

jpmn on February 10, 2010 at 1:18 PM

Olby obviously keeps his nether regions on his neck. What a dipstick.

CantCureStupid on February 10, 2010 at 1:23 PM

Ergo, if he’s not at the bottom of the barrel, it’s OK to focus on him?

RD on February 10, 2010 at 1:14 PM

Of course I’m only kidding w/this one (“I never said that”). Just a little nod to the debating style of our lovely HotAir trolls.

RD on February 10, 2010 at 1:24 PM

Good thing only 3 people saw this.
Knucklehead on February 10, 2010 at 11:42 AM

1) Chris Matthews
2) Rachel Maddow
3) Keith Olbermann (does TIVO’ing yourself count?)

Mr_Magoo on February 10, 2010 at 1:28 PM

I can honestly say that I have never watched MSNBC in my life, even though I work for the parent company. I had never even heard of Olberdouche and Tingles before I became a HA reader.

RustBelt on February 10, 2010 at 1:29 PM

I can honestly say that I have never watched MSNBC in my life, even though I work for the parent company. I had never even heard of Olberdouche and Tingles before I became a HA reader.

RustBelt on February 10, 2010 at 1:29 PM

It’s unwatchable. Trust me. I flip over to it on occasion just to reaffirm what we all know about that network. Just last night I switched over for a few seconds to Madcow’s show to hear her claim that tort reform is in the Obamacare bill. Well that’s news to not only the GOP, but the Dems, the trial lawyers, and the American people.

Doughboy on February 10, 2010 at 2:05 PM

Keith: Jeff Immelt has the lotion ready. Idiot.

Dino64 on February 10, 2010 at 2:12 PM

Electronic Heart of Darkness

I know his days are numbered. I know his operation must be a snakepit.

I hope we have a meltdown like the McCain campaign had. The story could be a seies like Steven King meets Mad Men. Wow.

IlikedAUH2O on February 10, 2010 at 2:12 PM

MSNBC is such a good ingredient for my update of Idiocracy that it threatens to take over the whole script. However, I’m torn about a character named Krissy who has a tingle or tinkle down his leg. Gotta call the rating people.

IlikedAUH2O on February 10, 2010 at 2:15 PM

In that segment he went on about climate change and said

“Its climate change. That means in the places it gets warm; it gets warmer. In the places it gets cold; it gets colder”.

Tell me if I’m wrong but doesn’t that mean that the polar ice caps should be growing or at least not shrinking?

Claypigeon on February 10, 2010 at 2:20 PM

Well what are facts anyway but inorganic social constructs. I mean really if you differentiate between a billion and a trillion you are just splitting hairs.

It is just enough to know that if you work for a private company then you should just give all your money to the less fortunate, you capitalist pigs!

/s

TheSitRep on February 10, 2010 at 2:21 PM

Ms-NBC: Laughing stock of cable news. Bahahahahaha! Stoopid Olburman. Mor Couw Skuel. Git yer edukashun, dumy.

TN Mom on February 10, 2010 at 2:52 PM

Congratulations, Marsha! That WPITW should be a badge of honor for any conservative.

Congresswoman Blackburn is my Congresswoman. Love her. And she’s a damned good Representative.

Tennman on February 10, 2010 at 2:53 PM

Olby is wrong. But he\’s a liberal, so we already knew that.

hawksruleva on February 10, 2010 at 3:08 PM

Man Glenn beck really nailed it Monday. He explicitly detailed the Obama deficit-spending budget plan, slicing and dicing the outrageous levels of Obamunist spending compared to Bush and Clinton, showing relative rates, and ALL the deceits of teh adminsitration’s rhetoric about THEIR rate of spending.
And when he was done with his Magic Chalkboard exercise he plainly predicted that the Left wing / “Progressive” psychotics would furiously try to overwrite the truths he’d laid bare. And so they have (tried). Olbermann and others, pathetically LYING and deliberately trying to obscure the OBSCENTIY that is their ideological fraud re Debt and Deficits. The rotten bastards.

rayra on February 10, 2010 at 3:50 PM

He’s getting more rabid as Obama’s numbers reach for the bottom. One of these days, he’s really going to go insane on air. I can’t stomach watching this uber douche bag until then. I’ll have to rely on HotAir,Olbermann Watch, and Newsbusters for the video when this Progressive Communist Moonbat finally does get hauled away in the white tuxedo with the sleeves that tie in the back. He’s pathetic. Take away Bush,Palin, and O’Reilly and he has no show, just like now he has no ratings. Olbergoebbels needs to go to a rest home.

adamsmith on February 10, 2010 at 4:19 PM

Apparently, Keith Olbermann is less of a journalist than most bloggers, who understand how to Google for actual data rather than pulling numbers out of one’s nether regions.

So that’s why Olby’s arse is so large? It holds a large repository of incorrect data that he retrieves while on air. That and too many trips to the buffet.
Philly on February 10, 2010 at 12:02 PM

Maybe he keeps his baseball card collection there too.
Philly on February 10, 2010 at

The “lotion” helps

DSchoen on February 10, 2010 at 7:41 PM

To begin with, there is no “federal budget debt.” There’s a federal budget DEFICIT and federal DEBT.

This is not new for Uberidiot, as he makes up non-existent “demos” to PROVE he is #1 in ratings!

Which also kinda sorta explains his support for all the stim money spent in the 400+ non-existent congressional distracts!

DSchoen on February 10, 2010 at 7:42 PM

By the way, federal budget debt is a good thing in a recession. It`s not a bad thing

Dept It`s not a bad thing. Try that line at a bank! Everybody needs a laugh!

DSchoen on February 10, 2010 at 7:43 PM

amazing isn’t it? my father loves his show…we’ve gotten into some pretty good arguments over olby’s rants…

cmsinaz on February 10, 2010 at 11:51 AM

That’s one, I wonder who the other two are?

PatMac on February 10, 2010 at 8:39 PM

Olby is like the thin aluminum skin of a jumbo jet shot thru with metal fatigue and fractures infinite. She has one more flight to go but that happens to be one flight too many.

Sherman1864 on February 10, 2010 at 8:54 PM