The stuff that matters begins a little over four minutes in…
I don’t think anyone should disagree that Obama’s exclusively “public sector” economy is a disadvantage.
But exactly how much advantage does Romney’s experience give him? What is he actually going to do to help the economy?
Will he allow the real estate markets to truly reset?
Will he allow the market to set interest rates without government (Federal Reserve) controls?
Will he move us from fiat currency to a commodity currency?
Will he let banking and other sectors fail so that we can get new ones?
Of course not.
The only thing he can do as a politician is talk about tax rates and regulations. That’s not going to be enough. The only other option he has is to just hope Bernanke knows how to give us an economic recovery. But he doesn’t. That method has been one of diminishing returns, and from 2001-2007 we used up our last bit of magic. Game over.
And what about spending? Well as he goes on to say, Obama must be defeated because he is going to cut trillions in government spending and cause the loss of hundreds of thousands of government-funded jobs.
Is that how you expect Romney to criticize Obama? To accuse Obama of cutting spending too much?
But he does. Suddenly the success of business and capitalism gets transmuted into government spending and stimulus. But because the area in which he makes these claims (which I don’t believe, by the way; Obama is not that good), is named “national defense” it is somehow immune to rational economic analysis.
Romney isn’t hoping to recover free enterprise. He’s hoping to use even more debt as stimulus for a sector of the economy that he favors and that favors him. Or he’s actually planning to raise taxes, a la the first George Bush. My guess is he plans to do both.
And the opposition to Obama, the thrifty budget cutter, continues: Obama is cutting Medicare. Medicare is the wonderful working government handout as opposed to the evil Obamacare government handout. That’s because Obama doesn’t have Romney’s wisdom from the private sector. It makes that much sense.
Romney’s does much better to mention that Obama’s trillion-dollar deficits slow our economy. Yes, but how is Romney going to do anything about that?
“Unlike the President, I have a plan to create 12 million new jobs.”
So it all depends on the public sector after all?
What are his promises?
1. Energy Independence. Like every President since Carter? It can’t be done. I’m all for getting rid of regulatory barriers to development, but energy prices are almost certainly going to be get too low to get anyone excited about investing in that sector. Or is Romney planning on just making Exxon into his Solyndra? It wouldn’t be as much a waste, maybe, but it won’t be the free market, it will still be plenty wasteful, and it will thus hurt the economy.
2. More centralized government regulation/manipulation of mass education. Which sarcastic suggestion do I make? “That always works.” “Because that has never been tried before.” Choose the one you like best.
3. Protectionism. The promise starts at 2:20. If you heard him say anything else, you weren’t listening. If Romney wins, I will be hoping that he “governs from the center” rather than according to his leftist economic promises. I can only hope he’s lying to get elected but knows better.
4. Cut deficit and balanced budget. Well, actually “on track to a balanced budget.” If you believe Romney, you are at least looking for something that would help. But if you believe Romney you are fooling yourself.
Besides, look at his demand for us to increase the military budget and re-assert “global leadership” (i.e. war and crony “capitalism” in “defense” companies). We’re going to have a war (at least) with Iran. That will mean we will need to “put off” dealing with the deficit. This is too obvious to require argument.
5. is really 5 and 6. The first one is to lower taxes and simplify regulations on small business. I like this, but it is economically marginal at this point. It will never make up for the damage he is going to continue from the Bush-Obama administrations.
6. “Repeal and replace Obamacare.” He won’t repeal it or he will replace it with something else bad.
He makes some other promises, but they only work if he is trustworthy. Do we measure a man by his sudden changes of heart, or by his track record? All of the stuff that his Christian fans care about (marriage, abortion, religious freedom) are all going to be neglected because they were never his priorities. He is going to talk tough and start wars (Obama will probably start wars too, so it isn’t really a choice).
The bottom line for me is that, if the US wanted a President who might actually lower the deficit and repeal Obamacare, Romney would never have made it as a candidate.
The best one can hope is that Romney won’t attack marriage and babies and religious freedom the same way that Obama might. That means something. But that is how the GOP plays its role, right? It consolidates all the gains made by Democratic regimes and then it puts in place really bad Supreme Court Justices that betray the voters who elected a Republican president.
But what about our dire economy? We need someone who will at least try to give us a soft landing, not fly the nation into the ground by refusing to extend the landing gear.