Obama’s Economic Triumph

Discussion in 'Politics' started by AK Forty Seven, Jun 4, 2013.

  1. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/06/04/obama-s-economic-triumph.html

    Obama’s Economic Triumph

    It’s increasingly clear that the president has steered the country back from the brink—and, in the process, exposed (yet again) the central lie of conservative economics.

    This Friday morning will bring the new jobs numbers. If recent months and indicators are any sign, the news will be at least pretty good, and maybe really good—
    remember, the last several months have all been revised upward by significant amounts after the initial estimates. Yes, there is still a ways to go. But everything is moving in the right direction. The president and his people jumped the gun pretty badly in 2010 with their talk of “Recovery Summer.” But 2013 might finally be Recovery Summer. And by next summer, most experts say, the unemployment rate really will be back down to the normal range. In other words, the Republicans are about out of chances to do what they’ve been trying to do since Barack Obama took office—i.e., wreck the economy. Now more than ever, Obama has to ignore these people and get through the next three-plus years just trying to make sure they can’t screw up the economy any worse than they already have.

    et’s first review some recent economic news. Consumer confidence is at a five-year high. Personal debt is back to normal levels, which is a big deal. Housing investment is up, real-estate prices are rebounding everywhere, the stock market is breaking records. The political-economic news has been no less comforting to the right. Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart’s arguments against higher deficit-spending have been debunked. And as winter melted into spring, with oddly little commentary, Obama soared past George W. Bush in the net job-creation sweepstakes: Obama has now created a net positive of more than 1.6 million jobs in four-and-a-half years, which is better than Bush’s mark of 1.08 million in all eight of his years.

    Many economists believe that things would be going even better right now without the austerity imposed on us by the Republicans who run the House of Representatives. It is true—and this is one point on which liberals, me included, haven’t been entirely consistent—that “austerity” also includes the higher taxes on the rich achieved through the fiscal-cliff deal, and the end of the 2 percent payroll tax holiday. So Obama does bear some responsibility for those particular forms of austerity, although the budget cuts the GOP insisted on have had considerably more negative impact on the economy than the tax increases.

    But here’s another point about those tax increases that arguably outweighs the austerity point, or is certainly far more important in historical terms: when you raise taxes, duh, you increase revenues. And so the deficit is going to tumble this year to its lowest level since 2008 ($845 billion or even lower, the way things are going), and next year to a level barely more than 2 percent of GDP, which is a level at which it’s not even worth worrying about. The deficit is going down because revenues are going up, and revenues are going up, the Congressional Budget Office says, “because of the growing economy, from policy changes that are scheduled to take effect during that period, and from policy changes that have already taken effect but whose full impact on revenues will not be felt until after this year (such as the recent increase in tax rates on income above certain thresholds).”

    This is huge. Republicans, as we know, have spent years saying that raising taxes doesn’t increase revenues. It’s an argument that sits at the very core of supply-side theory. It’s been an absolute article of faith. They tried to say this when they passed the Bush tax cuts, and they’ve tried to say it since. But they were just lying. The Bush tax cuts cost the treasury $1.3 trillion by the low estimates and $1.8 trillion by the higher ones. They continued to make these claims long after the facts were in, but facts never stopped them, of course.

    So let’s review. The only thing the Republicans have done to the economy since 2001 is make it worse. The tax cuts did not generate the great surge of activity that was predicted. Against Republican predictions and conservative economic belief, they drained the treasury. Later, GOP-led deregulation nearly destroyed the global economy. Then, when the new guy tried to rescue the economy, they opposed everything he tried. Today, with indicators clearly on the right track and clearly suggesting that more stimulus would help the recovery, they of course oppose that, too.

    Obama isn’t going to get anything out of these people. He’s just going to have to Heisman them—stiff-arm them, keep them out of the way, prevent them from doing more damage. No grand bargain. That’s obviously over. No entitlement talks or concessions. And on the debt ceiling, Obama should push them right to the wall. The Republicans want more budget cuts and/or entitlement “reform” in exchange for raising the debt limit later this summer or early in the fall. But in an improving economy, and with the public aware that we’ve already endured deep budget cuts, Obama should be sitting in the catbird’s seat.

    There’s a lot that I’m sure Obama would like to do that he’s never going to have a chance to do. A carbon tax or cap-and-trade regime is probably not going to happen. Ditto comprehensive, progressive tax reform. But he is going to be the president who led the country back from the edge of economic disaster and who managed to get a tax increase that helped disprove (yet again) the key trickle-down falsehood.

    And, if the economy keeps growing at the pace of the past year, he stands to leave office having created several millions net jobs. That pace is 169,000 jobs per month. Multiply that by the 42 remaining months, and you come up with 7.1 million, on top of the 1.6 million net jobs already created. Those sure aren’t Clinton numbers. But they sure aren’t Republican numbers either. And the American people will know this.
  2. Arnie


    Who's paying attention to the economy when we have no less than four scandals that involve the administration?

    This has to be killing the progressives. People don't care about an improving economy, only when its taking a header. Now, we have all these scandals, many that will resonate with voters, left or right, and this will dominate the news in the coming months. By 2014 the economy won't even be an issue. But people will have gotten a real taste of Obamacare. And then we have this gift.........

    Democrats' 2014 strategy: Own Obamacare


  3. Actually nobody but conservatives gives a shit about the scandals which is why Obama has a 47 % approval rating and Congress has a 15 % approval rating

  4. http://www.outsidethebeltway.com/most-americans-arent-paying-attention-to-latest-round-of-scandals/

    Most Americans Aren’t Paying Attention To Latest Round Of Scandals

    Thursday, May 23, 2013 · 27 Comments

    Not surprisingly, the Pew Research Center’s latest survey finds that the vast majority of Americans aren’t paying attention to the latest round of scandals gripping Washington:

    So far, public interest in a trio of controversies connected to the Obama administration has been limited. Roughly a quarter (26%) of Americans say they are very closely following reports that the IRS targeted conservative groups. About the same number (25%) are tracking the Benghazi investigation very closely, and even fewer (16%) are very closely following news about the Justice Department subpoenaing phone records of AP journalist.

    The new survey by the Pew Research Center, conducted May 16-19 among 1,002 adults, finds that 37% of Republicans are paying very close attention to the IRS story, compared with 21% of Democrats and 25% of independents. And the Benghazi investigation continues to draw much greater interest from Republicans (34% very closely) than Democrats (18%).

    A historical review of previous controversies involving White House or cabinet officials finds that these levels of public interest – and the partisan divide in attentiveness – are not necessarily new. Previous scandals – such as the Lewis “Scooter” Libby case during George W. Bush’s administration or the “Pardon-gate” scandal at the end of Bill Clinton’s second term – received similar levels of public attention, and were generally more interesting to those in the opposition party.

    Bad news for Republicans, obviously, because as long as most of the public isn’t paying attention to this story it’s unlikely that they’re going to score many political points off of this, and that is the ultimate end of all of this obviously. In the end, all this is likely to do is stir up the GOP base, although, as these numbers indicate, even most Republican’s don’t seem to be closely following the latest scandals:
  5. Ricter


    So it's not, "it's the economy, stupid", anymore? Wishful thinking on your part. You've also forgotten how "bad" the economy supposedly was in late 2012. It mattered so much then, even though it was improving, slowly, just as now. ; )

    Maybe "it's the gas prices, stupid..."

    <img src=",,&Unit=US%20$/G">
  6. stoic


    Once again information from the Ministry of Propaganda is regurgitated.

    Very few people noticed recently, as government-backed propaganda has been legalized. The only problem with propaganda is “they” can say whatever they want. Freedom from the truth, in support of the state, is here.