RT ‘Private sector fine’ – Obama

“‘The private sector is doing fine’ — Obama.”

The most significant characteristic of the six-word quote is not that it was spoken by President Barack Obama and not that it was directed at Congress. It is that the quote fit into a Twitter post.
The ever-shrinking attention span of Congress is now limited to 140-character insights. Its members are so busy retweeting Obama into oblivion that they are failing to see the human tragedy resulting from political games.
The private sector is not doing fine; only parts of it are. Large corporations have more cash than at any time in history, but they aren’t using it to hire people. Investment opportunities for their money are lacking because, in a classic economic spiral, unemployment and uncertainty are high. Consumer demand — one part of the private sector — is not doing well at all.
Which is what Obama was talking about. Any House members who listened beyond the six-word sound bite would have heard that Obama was proposing a way to restore consumer demand through public investment.
That’s what former Republican presidents Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush did when confronted with recessions far milder than the one inherited by Obama, and in each case the short-term increase in spending did the trick.
It’s a solution recommended by economists. It’s a solution that Obama repeatedly has tried to implement. Since 2009, Congress has blocked his efforts.
In the discussion that was turned into a tweet, Obama was begging Congress to follow the same economic advice that his Republican predecessors followed with Congressional support. He was asking it to inject money into the economy — ideally by helping state and local governments rehire laid-off employees — to restore the consumer demand that drives the economy.
Obama gave a succinct summary of how to restore the U.S. economy, and how to protect it from a European crisis exacerbated by the same austerity strategies championed by the U.S. House.
Members of Congress needed to listen, but after 140 characters they lost interest.

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2 Comments

Filed under Election 2012, Obama, stimulus, unemployment

2 responses to “RT ‘Private sector fine’ – Obama

  1. Alan Phillips

    Mr. Fleischauer…..I cannot believe you write some of the things you do with a straight face. You say, “Since 2009, Congress has blocked his efforts”. That is an outright falsehood. From the beginning of Obama’s term until January 2011 (when the GOP took back the house), the democrats controlled congress and the white house. They gave Obama everything he wanted…….850 BILLION dollar plus stimulus, his massive healthcare plan, and massive budgetary increases….all which have done nothing but add more red ink to our national debt!

    Keysnsian economics are a proven failure. You can sit there and say economists recommended this, however, I can point you to just as many who have said just the opposite. What did we get for Obama’s massive stimulus? Unemployment is still through the roof, GDP is anemic, and there is no end in sight.

    Look, I am self-employed, and have been for two decades. I come from a father who has been self-employed for over five decades. This isn’t our first rodeo. The prescription to what ails our economy, is less gov’t intervention (stimulus/regulations/taxes), and more economic freedom. It works everytime it is tried. History proves me out. For whatever reason, you and Mr.Obama fail to grasp this.

  2. Alan Phillips: “The prescription to what ails our economy, is less gov’t intervention (stimulus/regulations/taxes), and more economic freedom. It works everytime it is tried.” Please list 5 or more valid instances in a modern (post-1900) Western economy where this has worked. Be sure that significant deregulation occurred in each case cited. Finally, please name and match one-to-one the economists who favor your prescription to the 85% of the economists who favor the Keysnian approach to recovery.

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