American Elephants


The Summing-Up: At Some Point Reality Appears by The Elephant's Child

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People generally liked Barack Obama. He was handsome, stylish, clearly a good family man and cared deeply about his daughters. I’m not sure if he liked his dogs, but he put up with them for his daughters’ sake.

When it came to the economy, it gradually became clear that he didn’t know what he was doing, nor did his advisors. It’s not clear to what extent he listened to advisors. He remarked more than once that he knew more about speeches than his speechwriters, and more about most any subject than the experts he picked. There is a suspicion that he really meant that.

So what we ended the Obama presidency with was a fairly high approval rating because people liked him, and a very terrible approval rating on the right direction/wrong direction part. He will return from his post-inauguration vacation soon, and we can expect him to have forgotten completely George W. Bush’s polite silence to give the new guy a chance to do his best.

Progressives can’t help themselves. They want to control, to regulate, and to fix ordinary human nature, unfortunately they want to do it with other people’s money. To fix things and make themselves feel good about what they are doing, they want to do lots of welfare, but they can’t manage to take away enough of the money of the well-off to make the not well-off equal, which was their goal.  It never works, but the lure of socialism seems eternal.

Venezuela, out of toilet paper and most anything usually found on store shelves, can’t afford to deliver the oil which they have in abundance to anyone who might pay them for it. They are dead broke. Another lesson in why socialism never, never works, but the enthusiasts won’t learn it this time either.

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Don’t Let Anyone Tell You This Is The “New Normal.” by The Elephant's Child

I want to quote AEI’s James Pethokoukis here:

Nations probably never choose decline, at least not consciously. More likely they become victims of a creeping normalcy. Things once objectionable can become passively acceptable if they happen slowly, incrementally: the boiling-frog syndrome. Decline just sort of happens, year by year, decade by decade, one “meh” economic report at a time.

The important phrase is “creeping normalcy,” accepting as normal and natural a situation that is anything but. Obama has had four years, going on five, of over 7% unemployment. That is neither normal nor acceptable. When the Labor Department reported a decline in GDP and a rise in the unemployment rate to 7.9%, we should be angry about it. It doesn’t need to be this way. We have a history of successful recovery from downturns, and we know how to do it.

The economy added 157,000 net new jobs. Obama apparently sees this as progress, but at that rate of job creation, all else being equal, the economy would not return to 4.4% —the George W. Bush administration’s low point — for another eight years.

A president actually concerned about growth would have followed some of the recommendations of his Jobs and Competitiveness Council. He would have approved a pipeline. He would have expanded domestic oil and gas drilling, and fixed the corporate tax code. He would have put a brake on new regulation. Of all the things that may be wrong with our economy, a lack of enough regulation is not one of them.

This is not the new normal. This is the result of deliberate choices by a president who values payback for his supporters more highly than creating jobs. When something goes on too long without real signs of progress, it’s easy to slide into thinking that this is just the way it is, and it will always be like this, Do not accept sluggish growth and high unemployment as normal. This is not normal, it is defeatism. Fight back.




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