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Salon.com News | Behind the jobs debacle:
"The failure of Bush and his economists does not lie in faking a prediction. It lies in failing to understand what the underlying problems are. It lies in failing to propose policies suitable to their cure. It lies in the wanton pursuit of a strategy of tax cuts for the long term aimed at the political, not economic, objective of exempting plutocrats and their fortunes from federal tax. In lies in the rush into military adventures -- from missile defense to Iraq -- that achieve little, waste vast resources and make a proper jobs-and-security policy even more difficult down the road. Most of all, it lies in failing to care, one way or another, what might happen."
(link via Emphasis Added)
This analysis bears repeating often in various places.
The big picture is clear. This administration is concerned primarily with political gain. In the back of their minds they think that it will all work out if they can solidify a base of voters to keep them in power. Even if they have to sell their long term tax policy by passing short term tax relief for the middle class they know that in the long run it will be those same middle class people that have to shoulder the burden of longer more destructive tax cuts coming down the road. Those big tax cuts for the wealthy will pay off in the form of increased money for political activities.
On the ground I think its easier to see the structural changes in the economy. Its too easy to assume that we will always just proceed on to a recovery after X amount of time. It will take new and innovative ways of keeping the economy as a whole in good footing. I'm not entirely sure that even if we had done all the right things we would be on better footing even now. I do know that what needed to be done was not what was done. I know this because the rationale for why we proceeded with the current policy never changed even as the reasons for it did. Unless you've forgotten, the original reason to the tax cuts was as a reward for a booming economy.
Even as Bush remains firmly committed to the tax cut, his rationale for enacting it has changed. During the campaign, when economic projections were rosier, Bush said a reduction in the basic income tax rates would be a way of giving citizens money that was rightfully theirs.
But as we've learned, its not ever the real reason that we get when an idea is pitched. They know that if they laid out their rationale for their actions they would get booted out of office next term. Only by pushing through a bunch of policies that rewards their friends to the point of building up a powerful financial behemoth and using that money in the next election cycle to push more propaganda will they hope to succeed.
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