Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
Posted at 10:49 AM ET, 02/28/2011

Report: House GOP budget cuts would destroy 700,000 jobs

By Greg Sargent

Lori Montgomery scoops:

A Republican plan to sharply cut federal spending this year would destroy 700,000 jobs through 2012, according to an independent economic analysis set for release Monday.

The report, by Moody's Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi, offers fresh ammunition to Democrats seeking block the Republican plan, which would terminate dozens of programs and slash federal appropriations by $61 billion over the next seven months.

Zandi, an architect of the 2009 stimulus package who has advised both political parties, predicts that the GOP package would reduce economic growth by 0.5 percentage points this year, and by 0.2 percentage points in 2012, resulting in 700,000 fewer jobs by the end of next year.

Zandi also had bad news for liberal Democrats who are resisting sharp spending cuts: Bringing deficits down to sustainable levels will require more than a growing economy.

Now, Zandi will of course be dismissed in some quarters because he has aggressively defended the stimulus. But this is the second outside analysis to reach this conclusion. Last week Goldman Sachs, in a confidential report to clients, concluded that House GOP budget cuts would be a drag on the economy and cut economic growth by rougly two percent of GDP.

Reacting to the Goldman Sachs report, Senator Chuck Schumer remarked that it "puts a dagger through the heart" of the GOP's "cut and grow fantasy." Expect more along these lines today.

Even if you disagree with these analyses, you'd think the fact that there are now two of them reaching similar conclusions would be newsworthy enough to break through the din of Beltway deficit-reduction fetishizing. The argument about budet cuts is too often framed solely as an argument between so-called deficit "hawks" and "doves," as a dispute between those who say steep cuts are necessary and those who say they're cruel and extreme. The fact that outside analysts think that budget cuts could actively hamper the recovery deserves to be part of the discussion.

UPDATE, 11:13 a.m.: Here's a copy of the full report. The key conclusion that "too much cutting too soon" would be "taking an unnecessary chance with the recovery":

While long-term government spending restraint is vital, and laying out a credible path toward that restraint very desirable, too much cutting too soon would be counterproductive. The economy is much improved and should continue to gain traction, but the coast is not clear; it won't be until businesses begin hiring aggressively enough to meaningfully lower the still-high unemployment rate. The economy is adding between 100,000 and 150,000 per month -- but it must add closer to 200,000 jobs per month before we can say the economy is truly expanding again. Imposing additional government spending cuts before this has happened, as House Republicans want, would be taking an unnecessary chance with the recovery.

UPDATE, 1:50 p.m.: The House GOP leadership emails a response: This post by a Stanford economist rebutting the claims in the Goldman and Zandi studies. And John Boehner's spokesman Michael Steel emails:

"The fact that a relentless cheerleader for the failed 'stimulus' -- which the Democrats who run Washington claimed would keep unemployment below eight percent -- refuses to understand that ending the spending binge will help the private sector create jobs is sad, but not surprising."

By Greg Sargent  | February 28, 2011; 10:49 AM ET
Categories:  House GOPers, budget, deficit, economy  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: The Morning Plum
Next: Will Haley Barbour's race strategy work?

Comments

And we're reminded once again why it's so difficult to take the right seriously on fiscal issues. We're on track to have a $1.5 trillion deficit this year, which conservatives believe threatens the very fabric of civilization. But told that some tax increases might be in the mix, these same conservatives are already balking.

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2011_02/028197.php

Posted by: pragmaticagain | February 28, 2011 10:55 AM | Report abuse

I guess that answers the question: Where are the jobs, Mr. Speaker?

Out the door, apparently.

Posted by: TheBBQChickenMadness | February 28, 2011 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Imagine if the stimulus didn't pass and states were helped to see through the worst part of the downturn what kind of shape we would be in right now. Hundreds of thousands more would have been laid off.

Republicans have zero interest politically to keep employment numbers down when Democrats are running the show in the WH. Their only concern is regaining power so they can re-write laws to let their buddies game the system and contribute to their campaigns.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 28, 2011 11:08 AM | Report abuse

In order to save the economy...

...we have to kill 1 million jobs.

Nice campaign slogan.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 28, 2011 11:09 AM | Report abuse

And This White House has not even bothered to send someone like Biden to Madison Wi,

which is why I am now calling for the following.


The time may have come for the labor movement to form a National political party.

It's core principles should be to fight for well paying jobs, an end to production outsourcing, and all the free trade(which are not fair trade) agreements. Why should the American middle class have to surrender their hard won living standards, in order to compete with the poorest paid working forces that American outsourcers can find around the globe?

We have tried the free trade and outsourcing racket for far too long, and it has almost destroyed the USA. We are never able to close the balance of trade gap, so why the hell should we continue down that failed path?

Labor. Form a national political party. Focus on workers' rights, and restoring the USA as an Industrial Giant, once more.

Let us get back to making the stuff we purchase, and purchasing the stuff that we make.

Take a look at what just happened in Ireland. They held a national election, with just a three week campaign. An over 70% voter turnout, has almost wiped out the Party that was in power, when the economy collapsed, and Labor has risen to 37% of the seats won. It now has almost double the seats, that the outgoing ruling party has ended up with.

They are now in a position to be hugely influential, because the winning party can not form a government without them.

Start fielding a slate of House Candidates in 2012, and by 2016 you should be able to win enough seats, to be able to decide which party will rule the House.

Let us have a working class party, that fights for to restore the golden age of American Labor, when the middle class was thriving, and we made almost all our own products.

Labor; time for you top stop being Blanche Dubois. You can not continue to depend on the kindness of corporate funded politicians.

The time has come to form a working class political party, which will only be beholden to the American Workers.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 28, 2011 11:10 AM | Report abuse

On another American Labor note:

Labor; as a back up plan; just in case Governor Kochdaffi of Wisconsin ends up taking away the Unions' collective bargaining rights.

Start organizing a National Boycott of all things Wisconsin, to kick in, as soon as the law is passed.

Boycott all Wisconsin products, and promote a national tourism boycott of the state, until the law is rescinded.

Get the plan ready, and let the people of Wisconsin know that you have it ready to roll out, so that they can put more heat on Governor Kochdaffi to back down now.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 28, 2011 11:13 AM | Report abuse

By the calculations of The Obamateur's economic team, Obamanomics was supposed to prevent unemployment from going above 8% in the first place.

By 2012, The Obamateur will have had more than three years to improve the economic environment, and 8.5% won’t be seen by anybody as success in that effort. Not only will Obamateur have a difficult time justifying another four years of malaise in that set of circumstances, but Democrats in the Senate will be defending 13 more seats in the upper chamber than Republicans on the basis of that failure at the same time.

It won’t be a wind at the backs of Democrats in 2012; it will be a boot in their backsides.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 28, 2011 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Scariest. Jobs. Chart. Evah.
http://www.businessinsider.com/chart-of-the-day-percent-job-losses-in-post-wwii-recessions-2011-2#ixzz1D0XiSm00

Pelosi-Obama-Reid (POR) Economy

Grade: F- (Massive Fail)

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 28, 2011 11:25 AM | Report abuse

"It's core principles should be to fight for well paying jobs, an end to production outsourcing, and all the free trade(which are not fair trade) agreements. Why should the American middle class have to surrender their hard won living standards, in order to compete with the poorest paid working forces that American outsourcers can find around the globe?"

I am a liberal who believes that free trade is the right policy for the planet so long as workers rights are protected and strengthened. Any policy which favors one (rich) nation's wealth over that of another (poor) one is unjust. The suggestion that outsourcing is somehow inherently wrong is rooted in tribalism/nationalism and is itself inherently wrong. As the most productive nation on the planet, we should be doing everything we can to create opportunities for the poor. Not just the poor of our nation, but the poor of all nations.

The solution is to institute fair trade along with policies that protect workers' rights and insure an ever broader distribution of wealth both within and across national borders.

Posted by: mmyotis | February 28, 2011 11:36 AM | Report abuse

@mmyotis

I do not disagree with the tone of your post simply the reality that exists. There is no such thing as "fair" trade at the moment.
As long as the U.S. insists on employers bearing the brunt of our health care insurance they operate at a distinct disadvantage. As long as we have OSHA to protect our workers and other countries have nothing we are at a distinct disadvantage. As long as other nations...China..manipulate their currency to gain yet another advantage there is no "fair" trade. I agree with you in principle but not in reality.

Back on topic...it's hard to not think the R's are simply on a naked partisan bid for power. Wreck the economy some more and then claim the W.H.

What is left out of this discussion is the very REAL possibility that regardless of what the R's or Dems do about the economy we are still headed for a huge iceberg that is called rising oil prices.

Is there anybody out there that can comfort me on the oil prices. Perhaps somebody will finally murder Qaddaffi and we can get on with it and hope for at least a little more stability. IMO it won't take a very long season of high oil prices to destroy our fragile recovery.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 28, 2011 11:50 AM | Report abuse

[mmyotis bleated: "I am a liberal who believes that free trade is the right policy for the planet..."]

FLASHBACK 2007: Remember when smashing a Georgetown woman in the face with a brick was the highest form of anti-globalization patriotism?
http://michellemalkin.com/2007/10/20/anarchy-in-georgetown/

*fair trade*

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 28, 2011 11:52 AM | Report abuse

All, new Adam Serwer post on Haley Barbour's race strategy:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2011/02/will_barbours_strategy_work.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | February 28, 2011 11:53 AM | Report abuse

The problem we have, is the Democratic Party no longer elects people who have had dirt under their own fingernails. It nominates limousine liberals, who do not know how to engage in real pub sessions with workers.

I am amazed how detached Obama has been from the situation in Wisconsin, when it was his chance to use the bully pulpit to show the working class that they had a fighter for them, in the White House.

Not even the token effort of sending Joe Biden, with his "working class roots" to go fire up the protesters.

President Obama has really gotten trapped inside The Bubble, and appears to not have learned from being too slow to take on the anti Health Care town hall protests, and was also slow off the mark on the Gulf Oil spill.

The working class, with dirt under their nails, have never been convinced that President Obama relates to them, so what does he do, when he has a chance to show them, that he is with them, in Wisconsin? Nothing.

I also wonder why he does not go back and listen to his own State Of The Union call for young people to become teachers.

What parents in their right minds would now urge their college kids to focus on becoming teachers, while they see the teaching class being accused of destroying the economy and of being greedy hogs. Who would't be eager to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars on education in order to enter a profession that is being scapegoated as Public Enemy Number One.

President Obama;

A Bully Pulpit should not be draped with cobwebs.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 28, 2011 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Also remember that most influential republicans could retire today and never work again. The key word is influential. So what they are most concerned about is protecting their current wealth from inflation. Next concern is power and influence.
Self interested people will be self interested and damn the rest to eat cake.

Posted by: EducatingTheFools | February 28, 2011 12:04 PM | Report abuse

@Kaddafi-

Parroting Malkin's idea of what protesters consider "patriotism"? Oy.

I guess it all depends, eh? What's good for the goose is good for the...

If this was 1774 Boston, I bet you would be praising whatever violence was visited on Loyalists or Lobsterbacks, right?

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | February 28, 2011 12:32 PM | Report abuse

The reliably knee-jerk Keynesian Zandi. Fails the laugh test again.

The economy remains mired in slow growth and high unemployment, contradicting all the projections of the Obama wild spenders. We haven't spent ourselves into prosperity, so, the Zandis of the world tell us, we have to keep spending more and more.

Just one more hit. One more trip. And then we'll quit, for sure. We need just one more hit of Obamanomics. Just a few more years of unrestrained "pump priming," then we can start slowing down.

No one believes you people any more. You are talking to an empty room.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 28, 2011 12:36 PM | Report abuse

I wonder how many of the pontificatoriat writing here bothered to read the actual report from Zandi.

Any attempt to peer into the future amounts to speculation. Kay serra serra as the song goes, the future is not ours to see. Yet people are forced to speculate all the time. Long term decisions that must be made today are based on this speculation. so it is important that the speculation be supported with facts and established hypotheses.

I just don't see this in Zandi report. Mr Zandi simply states his prediction as fact, without any support at all. And he hedges with the best of them. Here's a perfect example:
"While the government spending cuts proposed by House Republicans for this fiscal year mean only modest fiscal restraint, this restraint is meaningful. If fully adopted, the cuts would shave almost 0.5% from real GDP growth in 2011 and another 0.2% in 2012. There would be almost 400,000 fewer U.S. jobs by the end of 2011 than without the cuts and some 700,000 fewer jobs by the end of 2012. The fallout will extend into next year because it takes time for budget cuts to filter through the economy. In all likelihood, the proposed House cuts would not undermine the current recovery; still, it is not necessary to take the chance."

There is no support for his real gpd growth assertions. None at all. so the extrapolation into "job losses" is similarly unsupported.

And note the last sentence. Mr Sargent, being the hyperpartisan he is, would never sully his blog with such a statement. Why it contradicts his breathlessly advanced story line!! And that story line is simple: republicans desire to cut federal spending spells doom for the country!!

There is one aspect of the Zandi report with which I strongly agree. A spike in the price of gasoline will swallow the "recovery" like a great white swallowing a surfer.

That was clear the last time gas prices spike to $4.00 plus.

Oh yeah, and I also recall that Nancy Pelosi adjourned the house rather than confront that issue on the day the prices finally peaked. Having passed cap and tax, they walked away from their duties. We can surmise from that that the Congressional Democrat WANT gas prices to be high, even if that means the end of our prosperity.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 28, 2011 12:49 PM | Report abuse

By the calculations of The Obamateur's economic team, Obamanomics was supposed to prevent unemployment from going above 8% in the first place.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 28, 2011 11:22 AM | Report abuse

---

As opposed to the last team, which had the Midas touch of converting 4% to 10%.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 28, 2011 12:52 PM | Report abuse

"Just one more hit. One more trip."

Not for nothing, but that is how the far right portrays any spending on the social safety net.

We are all drug addict alcoholic deadbeats who spend because we are ADDICTED to spending. Spending just for spending's sake. One of my right wing email lists keeps blasting us with the meme that the American government is akin to an alcoholic who maxes out his credit card and then takes another loan for "BEER MONEY". For real.

Since QB hates all government spending, I think he should not receive any of the benefits of said spending. No more driving on highways. No more mail. No more social security or medicare. No more national defense. No more of anything that comes from a single cent of federal money. And that means, he cannot buy ANY health insurance policies in which the government subsidizes a single penny. No more buying of any products that have benefited by a single penny of government funding. That means no more oil, no more gasoline, no more electricity, no more financial services, no more food made with corn, soy, wheat, etc. No more sugar.

That leaves you with pretty much nothing for you and your family other than your bankrupt ideology to cling to.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 28, 2011 12:56 PM | Report abuse

"There is one aspect of the Zandi report with which I strongly agree. A spike in the price of gasoline will swallow the "recovery" like a great white swallowing a surfer."

AWWWW! Baby wanna bottle?

YOU and your idiot Republican friends (ahem Koch Suckers) are the reason.

You pathetically cling to out-dated technology while rejecting calls for energy efficiency and green technology. And when gas becomes pricey, what happens, WHAAAAA!

Too funny.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 28, 2011 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Ethan, you seem to be in rare form today. Further proof that I save valuable time by ignoring most of what you write.

How is puberty going? Take care of that acne son, you don't want to grow up with a face like ceiling tile now do you?

Oh and please take good care of your mom. She should reap some reward for her permitting you the use of her basement.

Love ya sonny boy. Write when you get work.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 28, 2011 1:08 PM | Report abuse

"No more sugar."

Lead pipe lock argument.

Inescapable.

Checkmate!

{{{3rd-grade chess club chanmp!}}}

Posted by: tao9 | February 28, 2011 1:09 PM | Report abuse

here is the essence of the liberal argument for spending our grandchildren's income:
=================
As opposed to the last team, which had the Midas touch of converting 4% to 10%.

BB

===================

simple translation: Bush did it too.

so adult, such a penetrating insight, such a steaming crock of parrot guano.

The republicans in congress in the last years of the Bush admin over spent. That's why they took such a beating in 06. We conservatives, unlike the liberals, won't stay on the plantation with the national party. Instead of re electing spendthrifts we turned our back on them.

that amounted to a national excersize in cutting our noses off to spite our faces. Sure we gave the majority to the Democrats. The Democrats in their turn gave us a double decker crap sandwhich with a glass of sauerkraut juice on the side.

So we're in the process of throwing out the Democrats next. We've got the attention of the Republicans and we'll get them a majority in '12. but we won't take our eye of them because we really don't have an alternative. Either we keep the Republicans feet to the fire or we watch as spendthrift Demcrats destroy the economy through crony socialism.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 28, 2011 1:16 PM | Report abuse

quarterback1:

"No one believes you people any more. You are talking to an empty room."

It would be easy to believe the Republicans if they actually had a plan that would increase the number of jobs at all. ARRA did not work as well as Obama advertised, true, but it did work better than nothing says umpteen independent reviews of the evidence. It did prevent a much worse outcome.

Meanwhile on the right we keep hearing the incomprehensible nonsense idea that cutting government spending would spur growth. Don't give me any of that "crowding out" dreck either, interest rates are still quite low, there is no crowding out. There is giant surplus production and no demand. So the Republicans' solution is to further cut demand.

The Democrats have been throwing moderate amounts of water on a bonfire to put it out, and since that hasn't worked, the right concludes we need to fight the fire with gasoline.

Posted by: Scientician | February 28, 2011 1:23 PM | Report abuse

[FairlingtonBlade: "As opposed to the last team, which had the Midas touch of converting 4% to 10%."]

Don't be so hard on Pelosi. She was only one of the Leftist Congressional conspirators that destroyed Bush-era prosperity-- those halcion days of below 4.6% unemployment!

VIDEO EVIDENCE: Animated Map of Unemployment Since 2007
http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504464_162-20014136-504464.html

The Pelosi-Obama-Reid (POR) economy kicked in during the latter part of 2007, when its architects decided that starving the economy of energy by refusing to allow more offshore drilling in the face of $4 gas prices was a winning political position. Pelosi claimed that because we couldn't totally "drill our way out of this," we shouldn't increase drilling at all. Reid put an exclamation point on Pelosi's stubbornness by insisting that fossil fuels are "making us sick."

What Pelosi, Obama, and Reid should do now is expand tax cuts, ditch all of the alleged "investments" in so-called "green" (read: globaloney) technology, open up oil and gas exploration, watch the royalty money pour in and employ Americans again.

I know: that's way too much to "hope" that Americans be permitted to use our own resources to lower unemployment and enrich our country.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 28, 2011 1:31 PM | Report abuse

skip,

LIGHT BULBS!

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 28, 2011 1:37 PM | Report abuse

New Civility Update: Last week, State Rep. Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh) was busted in a prostitution sting.
http://www.thenorthwestern.com/article/20110221/OSH0101/110221076/-1/OSHbusiness/Hintz-cited-connection-Appleton-prostitution-sting?odyssey=nav%7Chead

Now, after the WI Assembly voted to engross the Budget Repair Bill, Thugocrat Hintz turned to a female colleague, Rep. Michelle Litjens (R-Appleton) and said: “You are F***king dead!”
http://www.620wtmj.com/shows/charliesykes/117064153.html?blog=y

*so progressive*

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 28, 2011 1:49 PM | Report abuse

We don't need studies. Take a look across the Atlantic to what happens when government cuts back early. The miracle of conservative government, in all its shrinking glory.

Posted by: oldabandonedbeachhouse | February 28, 2011 2:00 PM | Report abuse

KaddafiDelendaEst:

"Don't be so hard on Pelosi. She was only one of the Leftist Congressional conspirators that destroyed Bush-era prosperity-- those halcion days of below 4.6% unemployment!"

Has anyone ever suggested to you that correlation does not equal causation?

Honestly who is paying you to post this dreck? Even you can't believe such nakedly partisan gibberish. What bills did the Democratic congress pass over Bush's veto that caused the financial crisis?

Posted by: Scientician | February 28, 2011 2:13 PM | Report abuse

KDE doesn't understand such subtleties. Then again, KDE probably thinks the 2001 recession was all Bush's fault. After all, the Bush-Hastert-Frist agenda took less than a year to wreck the economy.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 28, 2011 2:17 PM | Report abuse

Sounds about right, 700K is the number of jobs we were losing per month under the last GOP policies so why not pick up where they left off???

Posted by: soapm | February 28, 2011 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Yes, it is true that correlation doesn't equal causation. But there is a significant body of economic opinion out there that sees the causation. this is from the very report that lead to Mr Sargent's blog post, upon which we are commenting:
"This is particularly true given the added threat presented by rising oil prices.Unrest in the Middle East has pushed up the price of crude oil by about $10 perbarrel; West Texas Intermediate is selling for almost $100 per barrel, and agallon of regular unleaded gasoline has risen to about $3.25 nationwide. Ifsustained, these prices will shave about 0.2% from real GDP growth in 2011, adisappointing but manageable outcome. If oil prices approach $125 barrel, andgasoline reaches $4 per gallon, growth will slow sharply and unemployment willbegin rising again. Should fuel prices return to their all-time high near $150 perbarrel for oil and $4.50 per gallon for gasoline, the economy would sink back intorecession. Such a price spike seems unlikely, but handicapping events in theMiddle East with any precision is practically impossible."

I don't agree with much of what I read in the Zandi's report. But the left does. So is Mr Zandi, the current darling of the left, right or wrong to link gas prices to prosperity?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 28, 2011 2:37 PM | Report abuse

[Scientician snarked: "What bills did the Democratic congress pass over Bush's veto that caused the financial crisis?"]

You're delusional if you think the Carter-era Congressional ban on offshore drilling wasn't loudly supported by Democrats.

You're insane if you believe $4/gallon gasoline didn't push the economy into recession.

And you're psychotic if you imagine the American people don't understand that the Great Recession falls firmly at the feet of the Pelosi-Obama-Reid triumverate.

Scariest. Jobs. Chart. Evah.
http://www.businessinsider.com/chart-of-the-day-percent-job-losses-in-post-wwii-recessions-2011-2#ixzz1D0XiSm00

Pelosi-Obama-Reid (POR) Economy

Grade: F- (Massive Fail)

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 28, 2011 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Just a couple of other points:

it is not the job of the government, at any level, to create jobs. It their job to insure that prosperity is possible. It is just that simple

therefore demands for a "plan" from the Republicans is simply a statement of abyssal ignorance. The Republican plan is simple: shrink government and get it out of the way of the folks who actually DO create jobs.

the issue with government spending revolves around a few implacable issues:
first, the level of debt we're facing means that an ever increasing portion of the taxes the gummint confiscates will go to paying the credit card. By the way lefties, that also means less money for your hairbrained schemes too.

next, the cost of government is proxy measure for its size and scope. Forcing the government to spend less also forces it to do less.

It is pretty straightforward.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 28, 2011 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Just a couple of other points:

it is not the job of the government, at any level, to create jobs. It their job to insure that prosperity is possible. It is just that simple

therefore demands for a "plan" from the Republicans is simply a statement of abyssal ignorance. The Republican plan is simple: shrink government and get it out of the way of the folks who actually DO create jobs.

the issue with government spending revolves around a few implacable issues:
first, the level of debt we're facing means that an ever increasing portion of the taxes the gummint confiscates will go to paying the credit card. By the way lefties, that also means less money for your hairbrained schemes too.

next, the cost of government is proxy measure for its size and scope. Forcing the government to spend less also forces it to do less.

It is pretty straightforward.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 28, 2011 2:52 PM | Report abuse

it is not the job of the government, at any level, to create jobs. It their job to insure that prosperity is possible. It is just that simple

therefore demands for a "plan" from the Republicans is simply a statement of abyssal ignorance. The Republican plan is simple: shrink government and get it out of the way of the folks who actually DO create jobs."

-----------------------------------------

Let's just assume I agree with your statement of the purpose of government. The question is whether now is the time to take the steps to trim the government as we currently are in a weak recovery and face the prospect of historically high gas prices.

If you are wrong and Zandi is right about what the cuts will do, are Republicans going to admit they were wrong if unemployment increases? Not a chance, we'll hear Republican after Republican blame Obama.

As for agreeing with Zandi on gas prices, I don't see why democrats can't do exactly what you are doing and agree with parts of the report while disagreeing with other parts.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 28, 2011 3:15 PM | Report abuse

@skipsailing28 How convenient that the "truth" just happens to coincide with your political beliefs. That tends to happens with Republicans a lot.

Surplus? Cut taxes, shrink the government
Deficit? Cut taxes, shrink the government
Economy in decent shape? Cut taxes, shrink the government

Posted by: world_dictator | February 28, 2011 3:15 PM | Report abuse

[FairlingtonBlade sputterd: "2001... Bush-Hastert-Frist agenda took less than a year to wreck the economy."]

Frist wasn't Senate President in 107th Congress, due to Jim Jeffords defection. The Senate President was Robert "Sheetz" Byrd (D-WV).

"wreck"? The mild 2001 recession was a brief hang-over precipitated by market fears of a Gore victory. That economic blip was a mild market correction after the Gingrich-era prosperity of the 1990s.

Try harder to keep up.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 28, 2011 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Edit: "The fact that an advisor to our party's last presidential candidate (which echoes a recent Goldman Sachs report) refuses to understand that the same Republican policies which got us into this mess are the policies which will get us out of it is sad, but not surprising."

Posted by: nitpicker | February 28, 2011 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Ashot, if you read my original comment I noted that the future is not ours to see. We must gather evidence and insight and then make decisions. We elect and pay "leaders" to do this on our behalf and we're learning that they are no better at it than anybody else.

Obama's education did nothing to help him predict the unrest in the ME, for example.

so the question is you're asking is one that cannot be answered. Is Zandi right or wrong? Only time will tell us.

If the Republicans reject Zandi's "advice" and the economy tanks again, will they admit to a mistake? I doubt it, and for two good reasons:

(1) they are politicians too. I don't trust Boehner or McConnell a whole lot more than I trust Weiner or Schumer.
(2) A double dip will likely be the result of a variety of bad things happening at the worst possible time and in the worst possible sequence. Murphy was an optimist after all. All manner of people will be crowing "see I told you so" and some of them will be, at least in part, right.

I tend to discount Zandi's report because I see no support for some of his more dire predictions.

I do believe that rising gas prices had a significant, and under reported, role to play in our current dilemma. Rising gas prices will be a huge political problem for the Democrats and the liberals. Americans will rightly wonder why we've stopped drilling here when the ME is so hard to predict, and is therefore unreliable.

I get the left's dream of "green energy" but if gas hits $4.00 soon all the windmills in the world won't help the Democrats at the polls.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 28, 2011 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Yes, world dictator you got it right. The size of the government is an issue for us on the right.

Good for you. Understanding your enemy is important in a war. That's why I hang out here. It is a great place to hear the "arguments" of the left and discover their priorities.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 28, 2011 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Skip-

I don't think I disagree with anything you are saying although I'm not sure how successful the blame democrats for high gas prices will be. I feel like McCain tried to do that without much, if any, success during the 2008 campaign, but I might be misremembering that. I think success on that is even less likely when people will see the cause as unrest in the ME rather than something Obama did or didn't do.

As for Zandi being right or wrong, I agree with both of your points. Economic recovery is so complex that it would be hard to point to one item as the cause of success or failure, not that it will stop people from trying.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 28, 2011 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Why does America continually fall for the GOP lies? Of course they want the unemployment rate to rise and for the econ to remain stagnant b/c they have a 2012 election to win!

Posted by: jillcohen | February 28, 2011 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Yes, I doubt the "blame the democrats" strategy will work all the well, but the evidence is there and the campaign consults have a way with words.

I really don't want a double dip. My wife owns her own business and she's really struggling. An improvement in the local economy would do wonders for her and by extension me!

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 28, 2011 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Look, I know that the Washington Post isn’t as slanted as say, the New York Times. Still, it’s hard for anyone with an objective mind to avoid the conclusion that your liberal viewpoint is more important than objective reporting and editing.

Latest case in point: the article today [28 Feb. 2011] by staff writer Lori Montgomery, GOP spending plan would cost 700,000 jobs, new report says. Here’s the topic sentence: A Republican plan to sharply cut federal spending this year would destroy 700,000 jobs through 2012, according to an independent economic analysis set for release Monday.

Now if you actually read the report (which apparently Ms. Montgomery did not need to do, noted financial expert that she is) you will find that the author claims that allowing that money to be spent by taxpayers instead of government will somehow result in the economy failing to create 700,000 jobs through 2012.

Putting aside the accuracy of that highly suspect and politically motivated prediction, since when does “failure to create” = “destroy”? My computer dictionary says the first three primary definitions of “destroy” are:
1. demolish: to demolish something or reduce something to fragments
2. ruin: to ruin something or make something useless
3. abolish: to abolish, rescind, or end something

Notice how all three definitions presuppose something that actually exists? Guess accuracy doesn’t advance the Washington Post /liberal agenda enough. More florid, emotional, and inaccurate language is needed. After all, you need to create a word picture of formerly employed people holding pink slips being pushed out, preferably into the snow, by meanie conservative Republicans.

[Note: I can’t find a single Washington Post article where President Obama’s policies are said to have “destroyed” jobs, despite the fact that there are a lot of people who actually have lost existing jobs after he took office and his "stimulus" policies took effect.]

Moreover, once Ms. Montgomery engages in the initial deceptive and inaccurate use of the word “destroy,” that opens the door to highlight the term further by moving it up into the title. Your blogger Greg Sargent now gets to do a post entitled Report: House GOP budget cuts would destroy 700,000 jobs.

Here’s a suggestion. How about working to ensure that the Washington Post “destroy” the use of inaccurate, inflammatory language simply to support its liberal political views?

Posted by: Sigma60 | February 28, 2011 5:11 PM | Report abuse

It's surely not that surprising that cutting spending in a relatively weak economy will be contractionary in the short-term.

John B Taylor points out that a credible deficit reduction plan can change expectations of future tax increases (true) and decrease uncertainty (possibly - but a fiscal contraction can increase uncertainty too). And since when did extending the Bush tax cuts become a credible deficit reduction plan?

The current experience in the UK is informative. Rapid Government spending cuts have shattered consumer confidence in an already weak economy and is having knock-on effects on the private sector - who are both suffering as suppliers of the public sector an unwilling to hire & invest in such an uncertain economy.

I've written more about this comparison here:
http://www.thecyrusbrief.com/2011/02/spending-cuts-employment-and-trans.html

TCB

Posted by: TheCyrusBrief | February 28, 2011 5:54 PM | Report abuse

And yet the same Moody's study, authored by Mark Zandi, one of the architects of President Obama’s 2009 “stimulus,” says the Democrats will have to cut $400 billion a year if the economy is ever to stabilize.

So, it seems, the Republicans aren’t doing nearly enough. They should be cutting $400 billion in spending and let the private sector reorganize in a reality-based economy.

Posted by: warnerme | February 28, 2011 6:02 PM | Report abuse

This is just a bunch of LIBERAL whining. There is no way this is true. A mere 61 billion dollars in cuts out of 3.6 trillion dollars in spending will kill the economy. We will lose 1.5 to 2.0 percent of GDP and lose 700,000 jobs. Then if we extrapolate this to the Presidents 400 billion dollar spending freeze over 5 years, We can expect to lose roughly 3.8 million jobs and our GDP will be reduced by 10 percent. So Mr Zandi would have us believe that if we just go another 2 or trillion in debt on Government spending it will be UTOPIA and eveyone will have a job and there will be no more debt.

If you believe this I have some ocean front property in AZ for sale just leave me a message.

Posted by: bjeagle784 | February 28, 2011 6:30 PM | Report abuse

KDE is confused again. Jim Jeffords didn't switch parties at the start of the 2001 session. Then again, perhaps KDE could invest in a splel chekcer.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 28, 2011 7:14 PM | Report abuse

Cheney to Treasury: "Deficits don't matter"
Former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill was told "deficits don't matter" when he warned of a looming fiscal crisis.

O'Neill, fired in a shakeup of Bush's economic team in December 2002, raised objections to a new round of tax cuts and said the president balked at his more aggressive plan to combat corporate crime after a string of accounting scandals because of opposition from "the corporate crowd," a key constituency.

O'Neill said he tried to warn Vice President Dick Cheney that growing budget deficits-expected to top $500 billion this fiscal year alone-posed a threat to the economy. Cheney cut him off. "You know, Paul, Reagan proved deficits don't matter," he said, according to excerpts. Cheney continued: "We won the midterms (congressional elections). This is our due." A month later, Cheney told the Treasury secretary he was fired.

The vice president's office had no immediate comment, but John Snow, who replaced O'Neill, insisted that deficits "do matter" to the administration.
Source: [X-ref O'Neill] Adam Entous, Reuters, on AOL News Jan 11, 2004

Posted by: uniteusnow | February 28, 2011 7:42 PM | Report abuse

Hmm. Kinda like how the Porkulous Bill was;
Pork for me, but not for thee...

Posted by: illogicbuster | March 1, 2011 2:35 PM | Report abuse

"Frist wasn't Senate President in 107th Congress, due to Jim Jeffords defection. The Senate President was Robert "Sheetz" Byrd (D-WV)."
Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 28, 2011 3:18 PM
******
I don't know if this was intended as comedy or not, but in the interest of accuracy, Tom Daschle (D-SD) was the democratic leader in the senate from the 104th to the 107th congress, not Robert Byrd.

Posted by: joelsommers | March 3, 2011 2:43 AM | Report abuse

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.




characters remaining

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2011 The Washington Post Company