Tag Archive for 'economic responsibility'

Whose policies are responsible for the slow economy?

The end of this month is the second anniversary of the technical end of the Great Recession.  Alas, what I have called the not-so-great recovery has been so not-great that for many, the technical end date is nothing more than a data-point with little correspondence to what’s happening in real life.

Some of the unemployment stats are at or near records, with millions of Americans cyclically or structurally out of work, many chronically so. One-fourth of homeowners with mortgages are upside-down, a term for when you owe more than the underlying asset. And now, almost three years after the financial meltdown of 2008, the economy is softening to the point that some talking heads are talking another recession - the dreaded “double dip.”

Clearly, many of our problems have been brought on by digital greed and not a little marketplace malfeasance. As that legendary possum philosopher, Pogo, once said, “We have seen the enemy, and he is us.” But it’s just as clear that the political class has to answer for their bumblings, bad policies and political non-leadership.

We wanted to know how our audience felt about how much of our pain can be attributed to that person upon whose desk the Harry Truman buck stops.  So last week, in our poll question on the website and in the Newsletter, we asked, “Whose policies do you think are more responsible for the current painfully slow economy?”

Those who thought our economic woes were “… more of a residual of President Bush’s policies,” represented 15% of our respondents.  A little less than 40% said, “After 2.5 years, this is President Obama’s economy.”  But the big number - almost half - said, “I blame the policies of both administrations.”

One of the ways politicians get re-elected is to make us feel that they have the answers to our problems and, given the chance, will fix them. But that sword has two edges and the other side cuts deeper with accountability for perceived, if not real, mistakes.

In Shakespeare’s play, Julius Caesar, Mark Anthony’s eulogy of Caesar includes this passage: “The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones.”

And so it is to this day.

Click here to take this week’s poll on government regulations.




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