osewalrus (osewalrus) wrote,

Obama GDP Politics Fail

Marketwatch has an interesting round up of statements from folks in light of the impressive downward revision of the GDP. The last two quotes are nice on the political side because the illustrate how the Obama Administration has boxes itself in rhetorically.

If you look at what the actual financial analysts and economists say, they note that government spending has declined and is not offset by an increase in private sector spending. Hence, contraction. They also note other drains on the economy (higher energy prices) and observe that this much slower rate of GDP growth seems to more accurately reflect reality in light of weak job growth than the previous GDP estimate.

The correct political response from Obama would be to say "when we had my stimulus, we were recovering. When the Rs imposed austerity, growth stopped. Clearly we need my policies not their policies."

But Obama can't say that, because he has embraced austerity and deficit cutting. He can defend how his stimulus spending averted disaster, but he can't say how this shows he was right, Rs are wrong, and America has a clear economic choice in the next election. All he can do is say how he thinks everyone ought to pay their fair share on deficit reduction -- which is not about creating jobs in the short term (other than by invoking the Confidence Fairy for investment).

So all Obama can say is "Gosh, this is so terrible. We must try harder to create jobs." Meanwhile Republicans, whose policies on austerity are essentially being followed (the Republican complaint on budget cuts is "not deep enough yet"), get to say the President's policy is a failure.

Moral: embracing your opponents talking points does not make you reasonable, it screws you over.

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