I don’t mean to pick on President Obama, but he just seems to be singing the wrong note time after time. Actually, that was a bit of a deception by me: I actually do mean to pick on our president. After his State of the Union speech where he promised everything to everyone, he went on the road saying we needed to spend more to aid the economy (I’m going to guess he said something like “Invest in America”) and cut spending:
A White House official said Mr. Obama’s conception of competitiveness goes beyond stripping away onerous rules and envisions stepping in where the market fails. The official said areas such as renewable energy and scientific research are underfunded by the private sector, because returns are uncertain. These areas are vital to the nation’s long-term growth, the official said, and the state must step in when businesses don’t. The administration is considering matching grants and other partnerships that entice private-sector participation and keep federal investment to a minimum. …
The new spending could include initiatives aimed at building the renewable-energy sector—which received billions of dollars in stimulus funding—and rebuilding roads to improve transportation, people familiar with the matter said. Money to restructure the No Child Left Behind law’s testing mandates and institute more competitive grants also could be included.
While proposing new spending, Mr. Obama also will lay out significant budget cuts elsewhere, people familiar with the plans say, though they will likely fall short of what Republican lawmakers have requested.
The Republicans never miss an opportunity to make a political point:
Republicans are casting the White House’s pivot toward competitiveness as an excuse for bigger government and more spending. They say a surge in federal spending and a $1.3 trillion budget deficit are impeding job creation, and dramatic spending cuts are needed immediately.
In the House, Republicans are pushing to cut $100 billion from the annual budget as soon as this year. A coalition of House Republicans proposed Thursday cutting $2.5 trillion in spending over a decade, pushing nondefense discretionary spending down to 2006 levels for 10 years.
“Today’s the day we finally stop kicking the can down the road,” Rep. Jeff Flake (R., Ariz.) said as the proposal was introduced Thursday.
The White House countered that Mr. Obama’s federal wage freeze will save $5 billion this year and that if we don’t spend, the economy will fail. And Mr. Obama appointed one of The Daily Capitalist’s favorite crony capitalists, Jeffrey Immelt, CEO of GE, to head a new President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness. He’ll wade in and get rid of all those confusing regulations, I am sure.
Mr. Obama hasn’t got a clue what really drives the economy.
I don’t put much faith in either party to do the right thing. The Republicans say the right things, but when they had their turn at the wheel, they spent like crazy.
We all know what has to be done: everything must be cut across the board. That means all discretionary programs and non-discretionary programs. I’m talking about defense, education, social security, medicare, you know, all the sacred cows. They won’t do it.
While we will see some token cuts, what is more likely is higher taxes on corporations (excuse me, I meant corporate “tax simplification”) and a national sales tax of some kind. He’ll wait until after the 2012 elections.
Trust me on this one folks.