Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Uniter in Chief

President Obama can certainly lay claim to uniting the country. No, I’m not claiming that everybody hates him, nor that everyone has joined hands to be pissed off about his tax compromise. Even if those things were true, getting people pissed off is not a uniting kind of thing. A gang of people with torches and pitchforks is not going anywhere constructive.

No, what I’m referring to is that now everyone is united in believing that tax cuts will “create jobs and grow the economy.” Half of the country believes that because they are Republicans and have always believed that, even in the face of a decade of empirical evidence to the contrary. The other half believes that because they are Democrats and will believe whatever the hell Obama tells them to believe.

It wasn’t enough that he made almost 40% of the legislation that was actually named “The Stimulus Bill” consist of tax cuts, which Democrats have always claimed were not simulative. Now he comes along with what is “Stimulus 2” in everything but name, and the damned thing is nothing but tax cuts. He’s crowing about how it is going to pull us out of the recession that we aren’t in, and having his Treasury Secretary warn us that if the bill doesn’t pass the failure will throw us into a recession that passage of the bill is going to pull us out of.

After two years of railing about Republican fiscal irresponsibility and repeatedly telling us how they “drove the car into the ditch,” he not only extends the Bush tax cuts for two full years but adds more tax cuts on top of them, and cuts Social Security tax to boot.

Something less than 10% of the package is extended unemployment benefits, claimed to be simulative because recipients will spend the money. My first rebuttal is that going from a stimulus bill that is 40% tax cuts to one that is 90% tax cuts can hardly be seen as an improvement. I also have problems with just how much an economy is stimulated by people living on what amounts to minimum wage.

But to the degree that it is simulative, it stimulates an economy which consists of consumption without production, and that is an economy which eats itself and collapses. We keep trying to reinflate bubbles and stimulate consumption, forgetting that “GDP” stands for “Gross Domestic Product,” not “Gross Domestic Amount of Money Spent.”

1 comment:

bruce said...

To be sure, the hypocrisy of the political process will part of the 2012 campaign. Plus all the "normal" BS that come with it. Gack.

Unemployment extensions is simply life support, not a "stimulus" by any means. Unless this is the new reality, where anything other than zerio is a stimulation.

Quit reading the thesaurus and do something else.

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