James Pethokoukis

Politics and policy from inside Washington

Obama vs. Reagan, 20 months in

March 4, 2011

Great context from the Heritage Foundation:

Since the Obama recovery began 20 months ago, the national unemployment rate has fallen only half a point, from 9.4 percent in July 2009 to 8.9 percent today. Contrast those anemic results with the robust job growth that occurred during the Reagan recovery in the ’80s. By the 20-month mark of the Reagan recovery, unemployment had dropped from 10.8 percent to 7.5 percent – a 3.3-point drop.

So why was the Reagan recovery so strong and why is the Obama recovery so weak? Just look at the best job markets in 2010 according to Gallup: “More than half of the 10 best job markets in 2010 were in energy- and commodity-producing states.” And what has President Obama done to help this job growth spread? Nothing. In fact, his cancellation of drilling permits across the West and his offshore drilling slowdown have undoubtedly slowed job creation in this sector. So what have been the hot job markets in the Obama Recovery? Gallup explains: “Reflecting the growth of the federal government, the District of Columbia was not only the second-best job market but also the second-most improved job market in 2010.” The Department of Labor Statistics confirms Gallup’s analysis: Since President Barack Obama was sworn into office, the private sector workforce has shrunk by 2.6 percent while shedding 2.9 million jobs, but the federal workforce (excluding Census and Postal workers) has grown by 7 percent while adding more than 144,000 jobs.

Comments

It should be clear by now that Mr. Obama’s presidency has been an unmitigated disaster. Mr. Reagan had far worse issues to deal with in 1981, as a glance at any history book will reveal, yet he had the intelligence and will to tackle these problems head on and ultimately prevail. Mr. Obama, by contrast, who has been described as everyone’s favourite MC, speaks well but has no defining philosophy other than more and bigger government. His recent pathetic defense of public sector union privilege really displays his true beliefs, despite his much-touted move to the centre. Another twenty months and he will be gone, finally.

Posted by Elektrobahn | Report as abusive
 

Ridiculous comparisons like this are precisely why The Heritage Foundation should be ignored. They are a purely partisan political organization that was created during the Reagan years to promote an economic agenda that is now almost unanimously considered a failed experiment that had a disastrous cost to America.

20th century president Reagan took office after 30 years of unprecedented economic growth and widespread prosperity. 21st century president Obama took office after 30 years of economic policies that have effectively gutted the nation and redistributed its wealth to such a small percentage of its citizens that an economic collapse is now underway.

And they are STILL trying to convince anyone who will listen that even LESS financial reregulation, even LOWER taxes, even LOWER wages, and MORE money flowing upwards into the accounts of the mega-rich (who finance The Heritage Foundation) is what will make America great.

And these selfish, unpatriotic crybabies wonder why everyone hates them.

Posted by GetpIaning | Report as abusive
 

‘And these selfish, unpatriotic crybabies wonder why everyone hates them.’

Now where have I heard that before?

Two posters elsewhere managed to completely demolish your argument on corporate taxes so I guess, in due course, your arguments here will be rebutted as well.

Posted by Elektrobahn | Report as abusive
 

You’re certainly welcome to try, crybaby

Posted by GetpIaning | Report as abusive
 

Those other two posters completely demolished their own credibilities by using false information to make their points. Go read the response by Getolanning and you will get it. If Canada’s corporate tax rates were really less than half of those in the US, would there be any companies at all here in the US? Of course not. US companies are sitting on large cash reserves, are making record profits, and are paying themselves record bonuses. The majority of US companies use complicated accounting to pay no tax at all. They still think that’s too much, so they want to reduce American wages to what they pay in Mexico. No wonder everyone hates them indeed.

Posted by Infiltrator | Report as abusive
 

Infiltrator: Canada’s current Federal corporate tax rate is 16.5%, and is slated to fall to 15% in a year’s time. That isn’t ‘false’ information. Provincial corporate taxes add another 10-15% for a final tax rate of 26.5% to around 32%. The feds are pushing the provinces to lower their corporate rate to a uniform 10%, which would ultimately see Canada’s tax rate at 25% tops. America’s is currently around 40% and yes, I know about deductions &c which lower this rate. The same deductions are available here too so that’s a red herring.

Perhaps Corporate America won’t come stampeding into Canada but, at the margin, a lot of investment has likely come here due to the more welcoming tax environment.

Posted by Elektrobahn | Report as abusive
 

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