The genuine article, not the kind that will be practiced by the incoming Administration: From the public debate on the need for fiscal stimulus, you would think the only open question is what form it should take. In fact, among economists, there is a good deal of uncertainty and doubt over whether fiscal policy holds much promise. John Cochrane, a professor at the University of | Read More »
Trade Diplomacy: Foundering
So reports Daniel Ikenson. I disagree with the contention that Congress’s activities “whiff Rumsfeldian” because Donald Rumsfeld was a heck of a lot more adroit than the House Ways and Means Committee will ever be under current leadership in dealing with the international community on the issue of trade policy. In any event, as Ikenson references, this is the kind of arrogant foreign policy-making that | Read More »
There They Go Again
No matter how bad the economic conditions, no matter how much additional money is needed in circulation, no matter the need for stimulus that actually works, some people are just bound and determined to raise taxes: House Democrats’ version of the $825 billion recession rescue package would end billions of dollars in tax breaks the Bush administration quietly gave to banks last fall. Already almost | Read More »
Make the U.S.A. home to tax-haven seeking corporations!
By enacting the FairTax (H.R. 25), instead of allowing ignorant Democrat Senate leaders work to punsish tax-haven seeking corporations, let’s invite the world’s corporations to set up shop here and bring their billion$ with them. Not to mention jobs, jobs, jobs. Report: Over 8 in 10 Corporations Have Tax-havens Sens. Carl Levin, D-Mich., and Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., who requested the report, have pushed for tougher | Read More »
Obama Cooks the Books
Incoming OMB Director Peter Orszag took some flak at his confirmation hearing today, most notably from Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL). But while the continuing criticism of Obama’s economic plan will make the headlines, Orszag might also need to answer some more questions about the damage he seems to expect Obama to do to the economy.
Barack Obama v. His Economic Advisers
It bears remembering that prior to hitching their stars to the Obama wagon, the economic advisers the President-elect chose took direct issue with many of the items in the expected stimulus package the incoming Administration is going to try to pass through Congress: For example, giving more federal aid to states, one of Obama’s proposals, falls in the “medium” range of cost-effectiveness and carries much | Read More »
An example of how Bush doesn’t “get” fiscal discipline
In the joint interview tonight with Bush41 and Bush43, Bush43 apparently tells Fox news that “the GOP should remain anti-tax and pro-military.” If you read between the lines, you will see the biggest problem with the current administration. When he says that we should remain “anti-tax” it tells me that the President just doesn’t understand the fiscal philosophy of conservatism. Anti-tax is not it. We’re | Read More »
Can We Start Worrying About The Incoming Administration’s Trade Policies?
Yes We Can! Consider Mr Obama’s support for the multilateral trading system. It must be admitted that the Doha round is on hold and Mr Obama could not move it forward even if he so desired. A principal problem is that its completion turns critically on the US making further reductions in its distorting agricultural subsidies. But the issue has become even more difficult with | Read More »
Shibboleths About Regulation
Steve Chapman demolishes them. His context is the Bernie Madoff scandal, but really, his words apply in a much more macro sense: . . . Advocates of stricter regulation often talk as though the choice for protecting investors is between imperfect market mechanisms and foolproof government regulations. In fact, governments, like every other institution, are staffed by fallible individuals who can be fooled as easily | Read More »
Obamulus Economics and Its Fallacies
Recently, President-elect Obama has openly reversed the course of Ronald Reagan’s “government is the problem” and even Bill Clinton’s “the era of big government is over.” He has given us insight into his short-fuse plan for government intervention into the economy based upon huge deficit spending. All the while, trying to garner support from voters in a campaign style message relying on the prediction of | Read More »
That’s how fast Ronald Reagan was spinning in his grave yesterday as The One delivered his speech on the economy. When President Reagan entered office in 1981, he was faced with an economic problem brought on by four years of Carter ineptitude. Did he call for massive government intervention? No. Let me refresh your memory, in case you need it: In this present crisis, government | Read More »
Liberalism vs. Capitalism
Capitalism has kind of gotten a bad rap, and here in America of all places. Never mind that our unprecedented economic growth can only be attributed to capitalism, the free market, the curiously successful idea that a man should be allowed to keep the fruits of his labor rather than handing ALL or even some of it over to the government. When stated in this | Read More »
Time for the GOP to Get Out of the Way
With yesterday’s announcement from the Congressional Budget Office that the fiscal year 2009 federal budget deficit is projected to be $1.2 trillion dollars, Republicans in the House and Senate should realize that the time has come for them to pull their support for any economic stimulus package proposed by the incoming Obama Administration. The CBO’s budget numbers don’t include the as yet unseen stimulus bill, | Read More »
Spending money that we don’t have for projects that we don’t have to have
Republicans push back against turning a stimulus package into a bloated boondoggle. Republican Senators spent the day at a retreat at the Library of Congress with three distinguished economists–Martin Feldstein, Larry Lindsey, and Peter Wallison–talking about how to get the economy going. At the conclusion of the retreat Senators McConnell and Alexander spoke about what an economic stimulus ought to contain: Senator Alexander: We — | Read More »
Inheriting the worst economy since FDR?
Since Barack Obama became president-elect, many in the mainstream media have claimed he will inherit the greatest economic crisis since FDR. Interestingly, many in the media made similar claims before Ronald Reagan was sworn in as president. For example, according to the January 19, 1981 issue of Newsweek, “When Ronald Reagan steps into the White House next week, he will inherit the most dangerous | Read More »