Unemployment rises to 9.8%

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GLENN: Hey, here's some good news. Here's some good news. As long as we believe that the high score wins, unemployment is getting better. It's now 9.8. If you don't score it like golf, this thing is going great. The unemployment rate is now 9.8, which is great because it now has an 8 in the number, which they promised us it would never go past 8. I don't know, maybe we didn't -- we didn't ask enough questions. He didn't give enough speeches for us to understand. Maybe it was just -- maybe he meant it would never go past 8. It could be 12.8. You know, it would never be 12.9. It would just jump whole numbers. It could be like 14.8, 23.8, but it would never go past an 8 number. Maybe that's what he meant. Because I know we've done everything. First we had to do the stimulus or we were all going to die. But remember, you're the fear monger. We're all going to die unless we pass TARP right now. We're all going to die unless we pass this stimulus package right now. We're all going to die unless we pass healthcare right now. And it will never go past a number with an 8 in it.

STU: Well, Glenn, they did say very specifically that it could, if we did nothing, rise all the way to 9.0%. I mean, can you imagine an economy --

GLENN: See how wrong they were? See how wrong they were? That has a zero in it.

STU: Right.

GLENN: This number, 9.8, does not have a zero in it.

PAT: Obviously not.

GLENN: So they are right again. Let me show you this. Do you know how right the economists were? All of the experts --

PAT: How right were they?

GLENN: All of the experts, they all came out and they --

STU: How right were they!

PAT: How right were they?

GLENN: What, is this the Ed McMahon hour all of a sudden? For the four people in the audience that remember Ed McMahon now? All the economists came out and they said that the unemployment number would be 9.4 to 9.7. None of them said it would be 9.8. How did they miss the president saying that it would never go past a number with an 8 in it?

STU: I mean, they were only over 83, all 83.

PAT: Didn't they also estimate that 150,000 jobs would be gained?

STU: Yeah, and it was 39,000.

PAT: So that was a little bit --

STU: Pretty close, though.

PAT: One number is bigger than the other and I'm not very good at math but I think the first one is bigger?

GLENN: We need to get a PBS -- can we get a PBS character out? Wouldn't it be great? We should get somebody that is funded by the government to indoctrinate our children with government propaganda and we should get them on the air to tell us and teach us exactly why 9.8 is good. Elmo says that 9.8 is good because it has an 8 in it.

PAT: It's weird how closely Elmo sounds to your wife.

GLENN: My wife does not sound like Elmo.

STU: That is the exact same voice.

GLENN: No, it's not.

PAT: Yes, his wife, Tania and Elmo are the same.

GLENN: No, here's my wife's voice. It's called I don't like it.

PAT: See the difference?

GLENN: You're not going to --

STU: Wow. Do you hear that distinction there, Pat?

PAT: Amazing difference. I don't even know how I got that.

GLENN: Here's Elmo: Elmo says it's cold in here. That's totally different.

PAT: Vastly different.

STU: Totally.

GLENN: If my wife --

PAT: Vastly different.

GLENN: If I came home and said, "Honey, really, I really, I mean, I'm tired." "You know what? Your wife says you should take out the garbage." I wouldn't have a problem with that. It wouldn't be -- it would be like, you're kind of cute.

STU: It's the kind of grovely sort of thing? Because that's the only difference.

GLENN: No, no. Let's do this. Let's say my wife now is Elmo. "All right. Now you're going to learn what numbers are." Do you want to learn? Is anybody saying, hey?

PAT: Tania is Elmo with a cold. That's all she is.

STU: Potentially an evil cold.

GLENN: How did this get about Tania? Weren't we talking about how stupid the government is? They are now saying that they don't know if they're going to compromise on the Bush tax cuts. They might give the Bush tax cuts to those people who are making less than $250,000 a year. All right, may I just say that that is fine. I have no problem with that. But the people who are making $70,000 a year, generally speaking, are not the ones creating jobs. I've never worked for somebody that made $40,000 a year. Have you? Have you ever been hired and paid by somebody who makes $40,000 a year? Because I don't know how they do it on $40,000 a year, create a business, do all the overhead, do all the paperwork and hire somebody in a good paying job when they're only making $40,000 a year.

STU: Yeah, the only people who are creating jobs at $40,000 a year in general are people who they call rich who have a business that they are just squeaking out $40,000 a year for themselves to keep themselves going and investing everything else back into the business.

GLENN: Exactly right. Exactly right.


Would Glenn make a better bounty hunter or a Jedi? You'll have to find out in a new episode of the Beltway Banthas Podcast, where Glenn goes deep on Star Wars with host Stephen Kent. In this 45 minute discussion, Stephen and Glenn explore the political themes of the Star Wars franchise, Darth Vader's redemption from Return of the Jedi, Glenn's earliest memories of seeing the films and even debate elements of the latest Star Wars films.

If you enjoy the pop culture and nerdy discussions that Glenn, Pat and Stu get into on the radio show, you'll love this! After you're through, you can also check out Stu Burguiere's appearance on Beltway Banthas to talk Star Wars. You can find that here.

It's never too early to start your Christmas, Hanukah, or Kwanzaa shopping. Or even birthday gift shopping. Especially if that special someone in your life is a Democrat. Because at last count, pretty much all the Democrats are now running for president. And that means there has never been a wider selection of official candidate merchandise to choose from. Whether you're into environmentalism, feminism, classism, socialism, or just plain love, there is a smorgasbord of classy items that you and yours will treasure forever... or at least until the next presidential election.

We have browsed each of the candidates' online stores, so you don't have to (it only took us three months). We have curated only the finest items from each of the Democrats running for president of the United States of America. Without further ado, here is your handy progressive gift guide – or maybe your what-not-to-gift guide.

First, the bargain basement options. Hurry! Time is running out to grab your Beto bandana, or your Delaney pack of golf balls, because at this point Stu has as much of a chance as these guys of getting the nomination.

Tom Steyer, for example – is he still in the race?


There's way too much Tom here. That shirt's got more Toms than a Caucasian dentists' convention.

For the slightly more moderate Democrat in your life, perhaps they'd like to join the "Yang Gang"…


Andrew Yang is a lock for Math Club president…


But for actual president? Well, I wouldn't make plans for how you're going to spend your $1,000-per-month Yang allowance just yet.

If you happen to be shopping for your dog, may I suggest this lovely "Dogs for Delaney" dog collar…


John Delaney's definitely going to secure the canine vote with this kind of outreach. As for any human votes, that's another question entirely.

How 'bout this tastefully understated "Natural Canvas" Michael Bennet tote to remind you he's also still here?...


Then again, it's a tote. So, it'll end up on the floor of your closet and you won't have it with you until that one random moment when you're out somewhere and you really need a tote bag. Just like Democrats will really wish they had a moderate when we're in the middle of the socialist nightmare of their creation.

Captain Planet himself, Jay Inslee recently dropped out of the race, but don't let that stop you from picking up what may be the greatest single item sold by anyone in this race…


A children's book called Elvis & the Elves: the Mystery of the Melting Snow. Written and illustrated by Governor Jay Inslee. Talk about a whodunnit – how could that snow possibly be melting? Spoiler alert: it's because of evil, white, patriarchal capitalism. And Donald Trump.

Then there's the candidate who thinks you're a moron that can't pronounce his last name: Steve Bullock...


Get it? Bull. Lock. Oh, so that's how you say the name that sounds exactly how it's spelled.

There's another candidate who also thinks you need help pronouncing his last name…


And he is definitely right about that. So, thank you, Pete "Boot Edge Edge." That helps.

Just outside the bargain bin section, but just barely, are candidates like Julian Castro and his "El Presidente" t-shirt…


When your last name's Castro, do you really want to go with a weird drawing of yourself as if you're a classic Latin American dictator on a postage stamp?

If you prefer a little "dark psychic forces" battling in your candidates, you'll love Marianne Williamson's "Turn Love Into a Political Force" rally sign…


"Turn Love Into a Political Force" would be an even better title for a Marianne Williamson album of 80s cover songs. And if you think I'm joking, then you haven't heard Bernie Sanders' classic 1987 folk album, We Shall Overcome. That's not a joke. Well, it is a joke, but it's also a very real thing.

Now, just a quick pause to consider the peculiar baby-wear that way too many candidates are selling…

…including Elizabeth Warren's trans-pride flag onesie. Let me get this straight – we can't force any gender on a child, because that's just cruel. But we can force a political advertisement on a baby? How do we know that baby is actually a Biden or Warren fan? The child may not even be a Democrat or a Socialist at all. That baby might self-identify as a Libertarian, or Republican, or even worse – a moderate Democrat.

Now to the premium items from the premium candidates. Elizabeth Warren – the candidate with the most honesty in her advertising…




Warren's merchandise reflects the woman herself – cold and humorless (watch her "This isn't funny" clip from the last debate here at the 4:27 mark). I'm sure she's really fun once you get to know her. Then again, maybe not.

Speaking of serious women, Kamala Harris wants to be president very badly for you, the people, as you can tell from her "For the People" poster…


At $29.99 though, she's sure not charging "people's" prices. Of course, she might be having to pay royalties to a certain someone for riffing on their poster. Just saying.

For the race's number one socialist, there's a whole lot of capitalism going on in Bernie Sanders' campaign. He sells so many delightful items that it's hard to choose. But we did anyway. The most random item is this hundred-dollar, black, "Art of a Political Revolution – Artists for Bernie Sanders Coaches Jacket"…


Coaches across the land will be clamoring for this one. You know, since coaches are such a strong Bernie-socialist demographic.

If that's a little over your budget you might consider a "Feel the Bern" fanny pack, to help store all those government freebies you'll get from Bernie…


This is the only context in which you'll ever want to hear "feel the burn" and "fanny" in the same sentence.

And finally, from front-runner Joe Biden, we have this fine "Women's Fitted Biden Polo." Which is just about the best polo description ever…


It promises the kind of snug approach that Biden loves to provide women. Even when they don't ask.

This was one of the first homesteads in the area in the 1880's and was just begging to be brought back to its original glory — with a touch of modern. When we first purchased the property, it was full of old stuff without any running water, central heat or AC, so needless to say, we had a huge project ahead of us. It took some vision and a whole lot of trust, but the mess we started with seven years ago is now a place we hope the original owners would be proud of.

To restore something like this is really does take a village. It doesn't take much money to make it cozy inside, if like me you are willing to take time and gather things here and there from thrift shops and little antique shops in the middle of nowhere.

But finding the right craftsman is a different story.

Matt Jensen and his assistant Rob did this entire job from sketches I made. Because he built this in his off hours it took just over a year, but so worth the wait. It wasn't easy as it was 18"out of square. He had to build around that as the entire thing we felt would collapse. Matt just reinforced the structure and we love its imperfections.

Here are a few pictures of the process and the transformation from where we started to where we are now:

​How it was

It doesn't look like much yet, but just you wait and see!

By request a photo tour of the restored cabin. I start doing the interior design in earnest tomorrow after the show, but all of the construction guys are now done. So I mopped the floors, washed the sheets, some friends helped by washing the windows. And now the unofficial / official tour.

The Property

The views are absolutely stunning and completely peaceful.