What Mattered This Week?

Jonathan Bernstein's take on what's important.

Speaking of dogs, not barking: Gallup's economic confidence index took huge hits in summer 2011 in the run up to the debt limit close call, and then again this past fall during the shutdown and debt limit fight. Now, granted, I'm not sure whether or not that index really does track anything that has real effects, but it certainly might, and it's certainly good news that Barack Obama and Congress managed to avoid any hit this time around.

On the doesn't matter front...there are thousands of state legislators across the 50 states; in fact, my recollection may be slightly cloudy, but aren't one of every three citizens of New Hampshire in the legislature there? Which means that "a state legislator introduced a bill" or said something stupid should be ranked only slightly above "look what the commenters as such-and-such site said" as evidence that an entire political party is All Wrong About Things. And even something which passes one house of a state legislature is usually no big deal. I'm thinking of the bigot bill in the Kansas state legislature (and liberals who reacted to it), but there are plenty of examples, and actually it's my sense that liberals, not conservatives, are the ones most likely to overreact at this category of things.

That's what I have. What about you? What do you think mattered this week?

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg View's editorial board or Bloomberg LP, its owners and investors.

    (Jonathan Bernstein is a Bloomberg View columnist.)

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