On Economy, Reagan Gets No Credit, Obama Gets No Blame

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Ronald Reagan did nothing. Barack Obama saved the nation from total collapse.

How else to explain the absence of jobless pitchfork-wielding Americans storming the White House? How else to explain the contrast between the explosive Reagan Recovery and the dud on our hands right now? Fortunately, the left is up to the task.

“The secret of the long climb after 1982 was the economic plunge that preceded it. By the end of 1982 the U.S. economy was deeply depressed, with the worst unemployment rate since the Great Depression. So there was plenty of room to grow before the economy returned to anything like full employment,” said left-wing economist, Nobel laureate and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman in 2004. Oh.

An economy that is “deeply depressed,” Krugman insists, or at least he did seven years ago, naturally comes back strong. To what principal factor did Krugman point to in calling the 1982 economy “deeply depressed”? Unemployment. It peaked in the early ’80s at 10.8 percent, even higher than during “The Great Recession” (aka the economy “inherited” by President Barack Obama). In 2010, the unemployment rate hit 10.2 percent, which means the early ’80s still holds the record for the “worst unemployment rate since the Great Depression.”

What most people care about are jobs. By that standard, Reagan faced an even tougher economy. Throw in a higher rate of inflation — 1980’s 13.5 percent average vs. 2011’s 2.6 percent — and much higher prime interest rates — 20 percent vs. 3.25 percent — and the early ’80s looked even grimmer than The Great Recession.

Krugman gives no credit to the Reagan policies of lower taxes, deregulation and a slowdown in the rate of government spending. He believes Reagan’s policies harmed the economy. Krugman approvingly quotes Bill Clinton, who, as a presidential candidate, said: “The Reagan-Bush years have exalted private gain over public obligation, special interests over the common good, wealth and fame over work and family. The 1980s ushered in a Gilded Age of greed and selfishness, of irresponsibility and excess, and of neglect.”

Enter President Barack “Hope and Change” Obama, with a Democratic majority in the House and a supermajority filibuster-proof Senate. Out went policies like reductions in income taxes, corporate taxes, capital gains and dividends. In came transfers of money from one pocket to another to “spread the wealth.”

Under ObamaCare, the Democrats placed the entire health care system under the command and control of the federal government. Through a nearly $1 trillion “stimulus” package, Democrats spent money on “shovel-ready” projects with a promise to “save or create” 3.5 million jobs.

To rein in “greed” and to fight “climate change,” the Obama administration imposed billions of dollars’ worth of new regulations on businesses. Through “quantitative easing,” the Federal Reserve effectively printed money to keep interest rates low, a widely disputed policy designed to encourage banks to lend and businesses to borrow.

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  • http://www.hired-mind.com/ HiredMind

    The passage about how Obama came into office with a supermajority, etc. reminded me of these lines line from John Galt's famous speech:

    "You have destroyed all that which you held to be evil and achieved all that which you held to be good. Why, then, do you shrink in horror from the sight of the world around you? That world is not the product of your sins; it is the product and the image of your virtues. It is your moral ideal brought into reality in its full and final perfection."

  • scum

    1) The entire health care system under the control of the federal govt? What special mushrooms HAVE you been eating?
    2) Obama bailed the out the corporate elite, who were literally BEGGING for cash, and they're all Republicans.
    So much for your conspiracy garbage.

  • Mario

    Corporate elite as Republicans? Last I read and heard Goldman Sachs managers went into the Obama administration. I will never see the mantra of Republicans=big business ever go away, when most of the corporate elite especially from Silicon Valley are big Obama adminstartion donors.

    • StephenD

      His "Chief of Staff" is from JP Morgan & Chase. Who do you think writes the regulations that will hurt the "little guy?" Toms Tool & Dye can't live up to and employ the smoke stack scrubbers needed in order to be in compliance with the EPA regs…but GE can. Look who his biggest contributors were/are and who got the bailout $$. That is not to let the Repubs off the hook. I've always said, they all piss in the same pot and expect us to swallow it. I say, it's time to clean house…and Senate!