The right to say “I told you so”

Both parties have the right to say "I told you so" a few years from now when it comes to the stimulus plan. The economists and pundits tell us that there are questionable parts of the stimulus bill while the Republicans tell us it’s a pork bloated waste of tax payer money. They say it’s better to give the money to the private sector and trust them to do what’s right for the unwashed masses.

Time will tell of course. I know virtually nothing about economics. I do know about human nature and won’t hold it against either party if they gloat over being right. George H. W. Bush first called Ronald Reagan’s supply-side economics "voodoo economics". He later embraced what came to be called Reaganomics.

I had to look it up. For those who like me don’t understand such things here’s what Wikipedia says:

Supply-side economics is a school of macroeconomic thought that argues that economic growth can be most effectively created using incentives for people to produce (supply) goods and services, such as adjusting income tax and capital gains tax rates, and by allowing greater flexibility by reducing regulation. The term supply-side economics was coined by journalist Jude Wanniski in 1975… 

Today, supply-side economics is often conflated with the politically rhetorical term "trickle-down economics." …

The typical policy recommendation of supply-side economics is to achieve the proper level of marginal tax rates, which, by virtue of the high rate of taxes in general, equates with cutting of taxes.

Maximum benefits are achieved by optimizing the marginal tax rates of those with high incomes and capital investments who are deemed most likely to increase supply and thus spur growth.

Keynesian macroeconomics, by contrast, contends that tax cuts should be used to increase demand, not supply, and thus should be targeted at cash-strapped, lower-income earners, who are more likely to spend additional income.

Many early proponents argued that the size of the economic growth would be significant enough that the increased government revenue from a faster growing economy would be sufficient to compensate completely for the short-term costs of a tax cut, and that tax cuts could, in fact, cause overall revenue to increase. Reference

From what I can tell Republican’s are still supply siders despite the past eight years of their president’s failed economic policy.

Time waits for no man unless he’s moving at the speed of light. Lacking a star ship’s hyperdrive, we’ll have to wait two or three years to see what time has to tell us.

Comments

  1. Hal Brown

     Terrific thread, especially considering I wrote only ten or so paragraphs that said basically that I didn’t know anything about economics and only time will tell whether Obama and the Democrats are right, or the Republicans are.

     I continued to be impressed by the regulars who comment on the columns on Capitol Hill Blue.

    I have opinions on many issues but only claim to have expertise in psychology, so reading comments like these is an education for me.

     

     

  2. griff

    How about this for an “I told you so”. Scottish historian Sir Alex Fraser Tyler in “The Decline and Fall of the Athenian Republic”, 1799.

    “The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations has been two hundred years. These nations have progressed through this sequence: from bondage to spiritual faith; from spiritual faith to great courage; from great courage to liberty; from liberty to abundance; from abundance to selfishness; from selfishness to complacency; from complacency to apathy; from apathy to dependence; from dependence back again to bondage.”

    I’d say America is right on schedule.

  3. almandine

    He is also credited with having said:

    “A democracy is always temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover that they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship.”

  4. AustinRanter

    As I continue to state in nearly every posting, in one form or another: The electorates will surrender all to those who they vote into power who make them the promises of “a car in every garage and a chicken in every pot.”

    There’s nothing like the pleasures of taking the path of least resistance.

    Our financial and economic crisis are small in comparison to the broken – twisted relationships between our electorate, political and government systems.

  5. almandine

    Well Ranter…

    I suggest that the economic crisis is much larger and more intractable. While I agree it is unlikely to happen, it would only take a single trip to the ballot box to right that twisted political relationship of which you speak. The Depression will, in contrast, take much longer and exert much more collective pain before it works its way through the system. There is simply no ballot box equivalent for this one.

  6. AustinRanter

    Almadine,

    What we are witnessing in our financial and economic failures are a direct result of not mere incompetent, irresponsible actions, but greed and powerism, actions that were 100% preventable.

    The hardest part of walking a mile is the first step. Until our politicians and government bureaucrats get the clear, indisputable message that makes them understand that their first allegience is to the Constitution, and to the will of We the People…and not the Corporations, or special interest then they will continue to be self-will-run riot government, without the slightest fear of consequences.

    The only way that we can begin to deliver that message is at the ballot. I’ve repeatedly sent letters that have been so abrasively blunt, and in the aftermath of doing such, I cringe and feel a wit bit embarrassed at my expressed anger. I’m tired of getting form letter replies that clearly shows that they simply don’t give a rats ass. My voice as an individual apparently doesn’t matter, but a collective voice at the ballot does.

    A transformation in our political and government systems will be a process, not an event. Like correcting our economic and financial debacle will take years…so will reconstructing our government.

    If we don’t take a stand now…when will we?

  7. griff

    Odds are that we won’t make a stand. As you said, these things were one hundred percent preventable. Unfortunately the masses are hard-wired to the TV and have been brought up on the fabled left vs right, lesser-of-two-evils control system.

    We had a chance for some real inroads with this election in the campaign of Ron Paul. The media simply refused to cover his campaign of real change, thus opting for the Establishment frontman in Obama.

    People will only get off their asses when their couches get repossessed, and not a minute before.

    In the meantime, check out Campaign for Liberty, if you haven’t already. Join the cause, donate if and what you can, become a precinct leader, and help spread the message.

    In another post I mentioned a number of states considering legislation declaring sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment of the Constitution. The number of states is now twenty-five.

    If you happen to live in one of those states, call your representatives and voice your support for this legislation. If you don’t, call your representatives and tell them you would like to see similar resolutions in your state. Call friends and family in your state or others.

  8. AustinRanter

    Griff, I might add that I’ve discovered that I get a tiny bit better response from sending emails and/or letters to my House Representative…because they have short terms…and they fear the voters a bit more.

    My Senators…well, one is one of the worst in the nation…Cornyn. The other is resigning to run for Governor. Kay Bailey Hutchinson. Hope she wins over the Bush Jr. we now have as Governor. He’d like to run for State Dictator if he could. Talk about a mess. Anyway…Senators don’t really give a flip as a rule…they really think voters will just forget what they’re pissed about before election time rolls around.

    Anyway…keep them civil-nasty cards and letters flying in.

    And, take it from me…don’t call you’re Congressional members F***** Liars in your letters or email. I had to change that to, “dishonest, deceitful, and mendacious opportunist”… :)

  9. griff

    Ha. Yeah we haven’t fared much better up here in upstate NY, although we have shed ourselves of one Hillary Clinton. Rick Perry’s a piece of work, yes? Love what he’s done with the Superhighway. Oops, silly me. There is no Superhighway.