Friday, July 8, 2011

Republican economics at work

 In an article from the National Journal, Ronald Brownstein writes:

During Bill Clinton's two terms as president, the median family income increased by 14 percent, the number of Americans in poverty declined by nearly 17 percent, and the number of children in poverty fell by almost one-fourth.

Since he left office in 2001, the median income has declined by 5 percent, or more than $2,500. The number of Americans in poverty has increased by 38 percent, or about 12 million. The number of children in poverty has spiked by one-third, or nearly 4 million. Few decades in American history have produced such economic losses.

The Clinton-era gains derived, above all, from a dynamic labor market that produced nearly 23 million new jobs from February 1993 to February 2001. Conversely, the stagnation of America's lost decade since then is rooted in a breakdown of job growth: Incredibly, nearly 1.5 million fewer Americans are working today than in the first full month after Clinton left office. The Great Recession that followed the financial meltdown of 2008 vastly compounded the problem but didn't create it. Even while the economy grew from 2001 through 2007, it produced, on average, only about half as many jobs annually as it did during the 1990s.

(To read the whole article, click HERE.)

Read that last sentence again: during the Bush "recovery," the economy produced "only about half as many jobs annually as it did during the 1990s." I've pointed this out before, but here it is again. And this is just a recovery, not even the debacle that started in 2008 (before Obama took office). Republican policies have been tried and found wanting. If we now listen to their discredited theories once again, we'll be asking for another kick in the face. 

How many times can you get fooled by the same nonsense? 

ANSWER: Apparently lots of times. Political and economic memory seems to last about a year at best. After that many people will believe anything if you say it enough times. Ordinarily one might say that we get what we deserve, but a lot of folks who aren't rich and who are informed voters are going to get shafted unfairly.


  1. Thankfully Clinton, who had good economic success, is a proponent of cutting the corporate tax rate. Hopefully Obama will listen to him.

  2. To repeat what I said when Anonymous first made this comment: I don't particularly care about the corporate tax, but it seems to me that now that corporations are the same as actual people -- per Citizens United -- what exactly is the problem with taxing them?

    Let's make rich people shoulder their fair share of the tax burden in any case.

  3. No one is saying that we shouldn't tax corporations. Clinton and others are saying that the cost of doing business here in the US should be competitive to other countries. I guess if you don't care about corporate tax rates then you also don't care about corporations creating jobs.