Is Thucky Lying (again)?


For those of you sane ones who don’t follow the comment tracks, Ole Thuckenstein has been at it big time in response to a BlueMeanie post, (Update) Arizona’s lost decade due to GOP magical thinking and fiscal mismanagement of the state. He’s making the argument that the Great Recession, which started in late 2007, was caused by Obama. Here’s the essence of ole Thuck’s argument:

The crash of October, 2008 happened as Intrade markets placed the odds of Obama winning at over 70%. Crash. The market instantly knew that a $500,000 home would only be worth $250,000 in an Obama economy growing at 1.5%.


When would the stock market rationally have been able first expect the reality we now live in? That date was October of 2008 when he gained the political upper hand. That is precisely the moment the stock market collapsed.

I questioned Thucky on the logic in the comment thread and the BlueMeanie suggested he was an imbecile, but he stuck to his guns. Ultimately, by the power vested in me as a BfAZ staff writer, I declared Thucky officially insane.

Still, I have a decent memory of the sequence of events, because this all was happening in the very late stages of my congressional campaign, and, sane or insane, Thucky’s presentation of the facts didn’t jibe with my memory of how things unraveled.

So I wondered: Is the Thuckmeister even being honest with the facts he’s using to support his crazy argument? The answer? Absolutely not. It’s actually remarkable how dishonest Thucky has been with us.

Thucky accurately reported that, according to InTrade, the likelihood of an Obama victory hit 70% in October 2008. But everything else he fabricated.

The crash didn’t follow Obama’s victory chances hitting 70% on InTrade, it preceded it. Here’s the timeline of significant events:

October 2007: Stock market peaks.

March 2008: Bear Stearns sold to JP Morgan Chase for virtually zero as a result  of subprime mortgage implosion.

July 2008: Treasury guarantees $25 Billion of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans and buys shares of Fannie and Freddie stock.

September 14, 2008: Merrill Lynch sold to Bank of America under pressure from Federal Reserve.

September 15, 2008: Lehman Brothers declares bankruptcy.

September 16, 2008: Federal Reserve bails out AIG with $85 Billion loan, taking 79.9% equity position [Note: Thucky specifically attributes AIG disaster to Obama election becoming likely in October].

September 17, 2008: Dow falls 450 points.

September 20, 2008: Paulson and Bernanke send TARP bailout package to Congress.

September 29, 2008: Senate votes against bailout package; Dow suffers worst one day loss ever, 777 points.

September 2008: Bank stocks trading at 25% or less of their 2007 levels.

Did Thucky deceive us? Obviously, yes. The unraveling occurred prior to Obama’s election becoming likely. So, if anything, the unraveling caused the likelihood of Obama’s election, not vice-versa. There was not a shred of honesty in Thucky’s argument.

But it’s worse than that. See that period in mid-September when things were falling apart by the hour? That is precisely the period when MCCAIN hit his peak on InTrade. Indeed, it was in mid-September 2008, for two, perhaps three, days, that McCain was favored to win the 2008 election.

Indeed, Thucky specifically attributed AIG’s woes to the likelihood of an “Obama future.”

Thucky: “Yes, all of AIGs insurance policies on real estate instantly became huge liabilities in an Obama future.”

Reality: The day AIG was taken over by the Federal Reserve, September 16, 2008, was precisely the day McCain’s chance of winning peaked.

Obviously, Thucky presented facts 180 degrees from reality. 

Did he do this intentionally? He’ll scream like a stuck pig, as he has in the past, that you can’t say someone lied if he simply gets something wrong. Perhaps, but I have reason to believe at this point that Thucky is generally dishonest. And, at a minimum, Thucky was reckless with the facts here. If you present facts as if you know them to be correct when you actually know you’re making them up, that’s lying, even if your wild ass guess turns out correct.

Sorry, Thuckarooskie, busted again.


  1. So, what are the rational expectations for this years elections? The Iowa political markets last completed trades at a 48% chance of both the House and Senate being controlled by Republicans and a 40 percent chance of a Republican House and Democrat Senate.

    These rational expectations are already having current economic consequences the same way they did in 2008. Healthier economic policies are getting closer every day.

    • So, instead of the economy responding to policy, with a lag between policy and its economic effect, you know better. According to your brilliant theory, the economy anticipates the future policy choices, as undpredictable as they may be, and reacts in advance. For example, te notion of monetary stimulus giving rise to inflation would be all wrong in your world. Instead, the inflation would occur in advance of the monetary stimulus.

      Except of course it doesn’t.

      Look, moron, one could go back through recent history and find examples that prove or disprove your theory. There is zero consistency. The economy collapsed in the leadup to Reagan’s election and remained stuck for 2 years thereafter. It perked up in the leadup to Clinton’s election, then starting fading in the leadup to Bush 43’s election. You’re claiming that the spectre of Obama caused the collapse. Put aside your incredibly thin understanding of what caused the recent collapse. Obama had essentially the same economic team as Clinton. So how do you explain the discrepancy in the “rational expectations” associated with their respective impending elections.

      There’s not one shred of logic to support your theory. It’s insane.

  2. 180 degrees from reality? Rational expectations is established science, winning a nobel prize. Highly ranked economist Ellen Mcgratten has mapped the great depression in research papers helping to unravel it role and creating a model for mapping this great depression. Are the policies in place right now, strongly supported by this administration damaging to job creation? We now have n increasingly overwhelming body of evidence that aays yes. Was it forceable in 2008? Yes.

    In fact, i would argue that rational sxpectations is on the march again. It is already predicting this years elections results and producing record stock market gains. Rational expectations are that policy changes are coming and that they will be positive for the economy.

  3. Crazy? Come on. I’m asking for you to debate on a higher intellectual plane and to understand at a much more complex level what is happening to us economically. You can stick to your mythology or you can think. Blue Meanie seems to have taken the hint. It was only after I opened up the the state issues that he came in with his very legitimate analysis. May not agree with his conclusions but the analysis was good. And, he granted the job quality issue not a small concession, clearly he wasn’t purely partisan.

    • I guess I question your premise. I don’t think you debate on a “higher intellectual plane” and I find your level of understanding anything but complex. My take on you is that you throw a lot of words around, but that you have a very shallow understanding of the subject matter and very weak analytical skills.

      Simply put, your intellect is not impressive. Jost look at this debate here, and see Donna’s comment. Your “70% on InTrade” argument was shown to be flat out wrong. So what did you do? Change your premise. That’s not debating on a higher intellectual plane. That’s debating like a third grader.

  4. Thank you, Bob, for your seemingly inexhaustible patience responding to the crazy. I find myself shrugging my shoulders (or banging my head on the desk), laughing (or crying) and moving on.

  5. As i recall, this is the blog the established a standard for data by publishing Krugmans column. By that standard, it was clear who was falling short in the first discussion. So now you double down by using the word “again”. If you want to second guess me, pull the political markets data day by day for the entire year. The deterioration that year, 2008, wasnt just in october, it started much earlier when Obama moved above a 50 percent chance of being President.

    • Again, I ask you, is it dishonest, using a pseudonym, to refer to yourself in the third person, creating the false appearance that you are not the person to whom you refer?

    • Because y’all are such meaniebutts, with your “facts” and all, Thucky is forced to move the goalposts.

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