Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Politicians and the Economy

When it comes to the economy, the President is like the quarterback of a football team: He gets too much credit when things go well, too much blame when things go badly (you may notice the Buffalo Bills, who have an offensive line that is a complete joke, have decided to change starting QB's next week!). Every President in the 20th century who did not get re-elected had a recession to blame for it.....or, got blamed for a recession (or, in Hoover's case, depression).

Republicans are now putting the blame for our current stagnant economy on Obama, who entered office 15 months into the worst recession since WWII. Obama wants to blame Bush, of course. Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan proudly took credit for strong economic growth that occurred during their time in office, ignoring the incredible technological advances that had much more to do with it.

The fact is, there is no magic joy stick in the Oval Office that the Prez. uses to drive the economy. There is really very little he can do in the short term. In fact, he needs the help of Congress to do as little as Obama was able to do, which was the stimulus, which, by the way, did not fail. Had we listened to the GOP, things would be much worse, which is what they wanted so that they could blame Obama for an even worse economy.

Always remember, politicians care first and foremost about getting and keeping power, and helping the people who put them there once they get it. The Tea Party's anger at insiders is deserved. It is too bad they have taken the road of promoting ignorance over reason and good policy, and will make things even worse if they get their knuckleheads elected. The GOP is glad to use their ignorant rage to get back in power, where we can expect more of the same crap we got in the first 6 years of the 21st Century. That will fix everything!

I was motivated to write about this by THIS STORY from the Economix blog of the NY times, discussing how economic events that politicians have no control over effect elections. Remember, if you are unemployed, or you don't have as much money as you want, it is always the fault of someone else!!


Anonymous said...

There's nothing like a cash infusion from a lender to keep the economy going. Nothing down, no credit check, easy terms, low rates, affordable terms, no cash no problem, no risk, no hidden charges, no payments until 2012.

Food, clothing, and shelter is the infrastructure of my family. Can't survive without it. Every time I get myself in a financial pinch because my income drops and I still need to shop at places like Whole Foods (Whole Paycheck) and Neiman Marcus (Needless Markups) or pay rent to my Amli property managers, I go straight to a lender and ask them for some stimulus money too.

It's good policy and an economically sound way to run my family's finances. I mean, if it works for the government, it should work for me, right?

Anonymous said...


At least that's how those companies would prefer to have it. You know, infrastructure. They need me to continue my unsustainable debt spending so they can keep profiting. If I don't get stimulus, they go broke or out of business and THAT would be bad for their families.

So how can they keep their business doors of infrastructure open? Let's see, maybe if they can convince the consumer/citizen/taxpayer to go take out some stimulus money from a lender so the stimulus money can be spent it in OUR stores.

Or in the case of easily manipulated representative democracy, let's just have their personal senators go out and take out some gigantathon loans bigger than ever before (not to worry, it's just inflation, which is MUCH better than deflation, remember? Deflation is so, so very much a bad thing). Then we can just have the senator spend the money on us directly, you know, infrastructure! Then we don't even have to be bothered by that citizen/consumer/taxpayer!

What? They won't get voted back into office? Well, we can't have that, how will we continue to get paid for our infrastructure? We'll promise campaign contributions, big, fat, juicy can't-not-get-reelected campaign contributions. SSHHH!!! That's not exactly something that the public should know. Once they are in office, they get to buy all the votes they can with the treasury. OK, it's not the votes their buying, it's the vote swaying support. I mean, would you rather have all the votes, or control all the votes? So make sure that Congressional puppet pads that bill with enough money so we can profit and kickback a bunch of campaign money. Just remind them, the more they shell our way, the more we can kick back! What? No, we're not going to guarantee they get reelected son. Guarantees are expensive!

Oh, don't worry! Their senators will make sure they pay the loans back. Remember, the representative democracy will send people with guns after them if they don't pay. Don't believe me? Try skipping a few 1040s. What? Revenue bills are supposed to start in the House of Representatives? BAH!! Constitutional technicality, it's just a goddamn piece of paper!!

Sure, they'll be charged interest, origination fees, late penalties and it will cost them way more in the long run than if there were to tighten their belt and be fiscally, economically, and responsibly sustainable...but that's not our problem, that's the consumer/citizen/taxpayer's problem.

It's not like their kids need quality education or access to affordable good healthcare. Not everybody gets to have inheritances flush with cash. Most of us will inherit an estate that has consumer debts that need to be settled, with no assets remaining to benefit our family.

Somehow (I've yet to learn how) when the government does it like this, its economically sound and fiscally responsible thing to do.