American Elephants

Where Did All The Money Go? by The Elephant's Child

8 Comments so far
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OK, so 79% of the $2.1 billion in stimulus grants went to overseas companies. What I’d like to know is what the Republican position on this is:

(1) Better not to have provide the stimulus grants at all?

(2) OK to have stimulus grants, but should have been on goods or services less likely to be outbid by foreign suppliers?

(3) OK to have stimulus grants, but there should have been conditions on the grants limiting their award to U.S. companies?

If the latter, I would point out that such local-content obligations are prohibited in the rules of the World Trade Organization, of which the United States is a founding member.

Comment by Subsidy Eye

This is just my opinion, but I’m a 4th generation Republican. No “stimulus”, and certainly no stimulus grants to companies like Fiskars, building $100,000 cars. (Obama’s not too consistent on his “hate the rich” theme). Republicans are much more likely than Democrats to understand that global warming is a natural process that has been going on for centuries, and there’s not much than we can do about it. Read the post about Keynes. Nice theory, doesn’t work. So they are unlikely to do stimulus, and more unlikely to invest in unworkable alternative fuels, alternative power, and electric cars.

Republicans (not all, of course) are apt to read economics, read studies from Right-leaning think tanks. What has always worked (when tried) in recessions is lowering marginal tax rates, reducing regulation, and cutting back on spending. It’s what Coolidge did, (though it wasn’t called supply-side) what Kennedy did— he understood that raising taxes was a bad idea. Supply-side economics, as such, came in as a theory in the Reagan administration (see Seven Fat Years by Robert Bartley, the previous editor of the Opinion page of the Wall Street Journal). Reagan and Volker beat down the high inflation that was left by the Carter administration, cut tax rates dramatically, and the economy took off for the next 20 years. It only ended with the arrival of Nancy Pelosi’s Democrat House.

Calling it “trickle-down” economics was always a Democrat slander.The rich, currently pay by far the largest percent of all income taxes and at the highest rate. Most of the fast-growing small businesses pay their taxes as individuals. Though Dems deny this, again, studies show it to be true. The other “rich” do not put their money in their mattresses or the safe behind the portrait of the family tycoon. They invest it in growing businesses, and in businesses like Bain Capital. The rich want their money to grow too, and when taxed less, and threatened with uncertainty less, they invest in economic growth. When heavily taxed, or threatened with new taxes, new uncertainty, new regulation — they have lots of choices and the best accountants and lawyers. They invest in municipal bonds, they invest in other parts of the world and they invest in growing companies where they don’t get dividends or capital gains. They have more choices than the rest of us. Supply-side economics works because it frees people to turn loose their native enthusiasm, ideas, ambition and determination in the expectation that it is worthwhile to take the risk.

Comment by The Elephant's Child

Thanks, but much more info than needed. Just to confirm, the answer is (1)?

And thanks for being honest about “not all”. Midwest — i.e., farm state — Republicans are just as prone to support alternative fuels as their Democratic brethren. But I think we are agreed on that.

Comment by Subsidy Eye

The answer is 1. Yes, I know that the Farm Bill and corn ethanol are your hot buttons. Republicans are politicians too. And they are more political that scholars, and plenty of them have never studied the climate problem at all but just follow conventional wisdom. It’s just that Democrats are far worse.:>)

Comment by The Elephant's Child

Hot button is an understatement: incensed. Seen the latest crop prices?

Heading for an all-time high. Livestock farmers and poor people in food-importing countries are going to suffer.

So, will USDA Secretary Vilsack relax the “renewable fuel standard”? Not on your bippy!

That would make a nice test of the Republican Party’s mettle: call for a suspension (at least) of the biofuel mandates!

Comment by Subsidy Eye

I have. They really need rain! And they don’t need to be putting corn in our gas tanks. Secretary Vilsack is about as convincing on farming as he is on wildfire. Wrong person in wrong office.

Comment by The Elephant's Child

Correction: wrong person in ANY office!

Comment by Subsidy Eye

Sorry, I can’t help myself: by this time of the year, the corn should be as high as, yes, an elephant’s eye!.

Instead it’s only about as high as an ass’s eye.

Comment by Subsidy Eye

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