“Policy matters. If Barack Obama matched Ronald Reagan’s post-recession recovery rate, 15.7 million more Americans would have jobs.”
Policy matters. If Barack Obama matched Ronald Reagan’s post-recession recovery rate, 15.7 million more Americans would have jobs.
Some apologists suggest that the current recovery is so weak because the recession was so deep. But the totality of our experience in the postwar period is exactly the opposite—the bigger the bust, the bigger the boom that follows.
If we had matched the 1982 recovery rate, today annual per-capita income would be $4,154 higher than before the recession—that’s an extra $16,600 for a family of four—and some 15.7 million more Americans would have jobs.
A compelling case can be made that Reagan’s tax cuts, Social Security reforms, regulatory reforms, and limits on the growth and power of the federal government not only helped the economy shake off the malaise of the 1970s but generated an economic growth premium that bore dividends for Americans until 2007.
Under President Obama’s policies, federal spending has exploded like never before… Government control of the health-care system and the financial system has been greatly expanded. The administration also supported last year’s failed “card check” legislation, an attempt at the most dramatic expansion of the power of organized labor since the Great Depression; launched diatribes against wealth accumulation; undertook a massive expansion in the regulatory power of the federal government; and proposed the largest tax increases in American history. Those tax increases were aimed almost exclusively at America’s entrepreneurs, risk takers and small businesses.
Apparently, Mr. Obama failed to notice that President Bill Clinton saw his strongest period of economic growth only after his health-care takeover and stimulus bills were defeated, welfare rolls were pared, the capital gains tax was cut, and the budget was balanced. The recovery is being stifled by the unprecedented policy changes undertaken by this administration.
Big government costs more than higher taxes. It is paid for with diminished freedom and less opportunity. You can’t have unlimited opportunity and unlimited government.
On October 8, 2011, the Wall St. Journal wrote:
103,000 vs. 1.1 million: a tale of September jobs, 28 years apart.
Yesterday’s September jobs report was a welcome surprise, a signal that another recession may be averted. With 103,000 new jobs in the month, the jobs picture looks less bleak than it did a month ago.
As it happens, the biggest one-month jobs gain in American history was at exactly this juncture of the Reagan Presidency, after another deep recession. In September 1983, coming out of the 1981-82 downturn, American employers added 1.1 million workers to their payrolls, the acceleration point for a seven-year expansion that created some 17 million new jobs.
The difference between then and now isn’t the magnitude of the recessions but the policies the U.S. pursued to restore growth. In the Reagan expansion, spending and tax rates were cut, regulations were eased, and government was in retreat. Today, we’ve had a spending and regulatory boom, the threat of higher tax rates, and a general antibusiness political climate. Policies have consequences.
On August 3, 2012, Business Insider published the following chart: (click on the chart to see a larger version)
Business Insider calls the chart
“the Scariest Jobs Chart EVER”
and says of it:
With the unemployment rate ticking higher, and the pace of job creation still at a pathetically low rate (by historical standards), we’re compelled to revisit this chart.
… it shows the trajectory of job losses in all of the various post-WWII recessions. This current recession (and recovery) is the bright red line.
As you can see, the downtrend was far worse than anything else we’d seen since WWII, and the rise is far more meager than anything else we had seen.
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