August 7, 2011

Feeling Their Pain

A couple of paragraphs from today's op-ed column in the New York Times, written by Joe Nocera, who specializes in business topics:
"Standard and Poor’s just downgraded U.S. debt for the first time in modern history. Despite the better-than-expected job numbers on Friday, unemployment remains stubbornly, and unacceptably, high. So far this year, G.D.P. growth is under 1 percent. The stock market is skittish. Companies have cash, but they aren’t hiring because there is no demand for their products.
Choking off spending can only make matters worse. Mark Zandi, the well-known economist at Moody’s Analytics — who applauds the debt ceiling deal — acknowledged to me that if major spending cuts take place in 2013, as is currently envisioned, they will cost the country 1.5 percent of G.D.P. The debt ceiling deal, it seems to me, practically guarantees another recession."
I'll say it again. As you watch these events unfold, remember this simple proposition: for the 2012 election cycle, a poor economy hurts Democrats and helps Republicans. It's not so much that Republicans will purposely try and tank the economy so much as they will assess various policy and political strategies and not automaticlly rule out courses of action that include outcomes negative to the economic well-being of the average American, instead accepting them as necessary evils to be tolerated in pursuit of victory.

They want us to be in pain. They want us to be angry. And in that pain and in that anger, they want us to lash out at the Father of All Evils, Barack Obama. A simple plan if ever there was one. The only question is whether we the people will let them get away with it.

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