Browsing the archives for the Economy tag.



Nobody Cares About Life-Preservers!

Economic Policy, Economy, Election, Politics

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi recently commented that “You don’t get any credit in campaigns for what you prevented from happening”.

I brought up this same point in a post yesterday. People don’t feel as grateful for a person who straps the life preserver on…but they are eternally grateful to the person who pull them out of the water before they take that last gasp of life.

This is the way people are. Nobody is going to make people understand otherwise that the economy was saved. I’m afraid there will be Republican good fortunes brought on the backs of Democrats for years to come.

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Positive Economic Reports….I’m going to be rich!!!

Economic Policy, Economy, Politics

Adam

I’m not sure where the broad publics’ head is at with recent positive news coming out on the economy. Some commentators I have read lately (and Senators Schumer and Reid) are talking about the economy turning around. The fall has occurred and its all UP UP UP from here… Well maybe there has not been that much optimism from them, but its out there. Does this kind of optimism worry anyone else besides me? Luckily I am not the only one who is worried.

The economy has been taking a hit on a regular basis for quite a while. There is a good description of where all of this positive movement is coming from, but I would rather relate it to a very likely scenario out there now.

Try to imagine that you are an employee at RSPC (The Really Smart People Company) and, in order for the company to continue operations with the existing workforce, all employees are asked to take a pay cut…lets say a 25% pay cut. Okay, you have your pay cut, times are tough, so you just deal with it. When a couple of things begin to go better RSPC decides to give you a 5% raise. The RSPC is ecstatic over the news that they are making a profit in the first quarter of the year and they believe things are turning around. Now, as the employee, are you as excited about that 5% raise, or are you still upset and wary because of the total 20% hit you are still feeling?

Good news is still good, but lets take it with just a little perspective.

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Finally…A Movie on Current Events

Economic Policy, Economy

Adam

I can’t believe how long it has been since I posted. It has been distracting…difficult for most people to catch their breath and understand what is happening. I think its either that everyone is so excited for Keanu Reeves new movie The Day the Earth Stood Still or because it seems that the world is literally going to stand still in the near future.

It seems that you can’t go anywhere without hearing someone talking about layoffs (either their story or someone they know).

It used to be that listening to the news could induce depression, but now a visit to Starbucks provides a feeling a despair to go along with a jolt of caffeine.

Despite the abundance of despair in the world today, take heed that things could be worse…Keanue Reeves could come to our planet (or back to our planet) and announce the end. We’re not there yet….

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Can You Stimulate Me Economically?

Barack Obama, Economic Policy, Economic Stimulus, Economy, Infrastructure, Obama, Politics, President Obama, Public Policy
Adam    

I heard a crazy thing the other day; things are not going in the right direction for our economy. Actually, I think I heard that a couple of years ago. You remember those days don’t you? There was a housing bubble still, sub-prime mortgages were parts of conversations, and the positions on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan would decide the next U.S. President.

Today, we have a President-Elect whose stance on the wars most likely did not help him get elected.  The call for change of the way things have been going brought him to victory. Now, what change is going to take place is a couple of months away from being realized. One issue that is absolutely necessary is an economic stimulus package to go into effect as soon as possible.

The potential second economic stimulus package has been in the news for a couple of months now.  There are opinions flowing at both ends of the discussion. That being stated, I thought it was important for me to throw my thoughts out there.

First, checks being handed out to citizens should not happen again. That was like my cup of coffee at 1:00 pm after a late night…I’m still going to crash.

Second, Federal spending on infrastructure is necessary and has always been necessary. Its not spending for the sake of giving money back to the poor. Its an investment in the future.  I racked up a lot of student loans, which was an investment in my future prosperity. I didn’t go out and buy a bunch of stuff with credit, which I would say is not an investment.

These two scenarios are the way I see the two sides of the argument over the economic stimulus.

The current number most commonly being suggested is $150-$200 billion in economic stimulus. This should go heavily towards infrastructure investment. Liberals and conservatives are calling for this type of Federal spending. But why so little?

The United States’ GDP for 2009 is projected to be at $15 trillion. The package being talked about would only amount to roughly 1% of GDP. This past week China unveiled an economic stimulus package in the amount of $586 billion, 16% of their GDP. 

Some economists (liberal) are calling for more spending to make up the gap in output. Paul Krugman thinks the stimulus package should be 4% of GDP, or $600 billion. Similarly, Robert Reich states “government may have to spend $600 or $700 billion next year to reverse the downward cycle we’re in.

Now, to assuage any fears that the federal government is going to throw money at anyone who asks for it, there are actual needs for funds. The American Society of Civil Engineers puts the needed expenditures over the next 5 years to bring the nation’s infrastructure up to good condition at $1.6 trillion. This number is what is needed for “improvements”. What about the new investments that are needed for the world economic leader to continue to grow throughout the 21st Century?

We need infrastructure improvements, we need new infrastructure investment, we need economic stimulus, and we need jobs. All of these needs can be met with a strong economic stimulus package. The money needs to be spent at some point, so why not have the government spend that money when everyone else is hoarding their own money?

 

 

Robert

There is one basic flaw in your plan, Adam:  America is broke and it is time to start acting like it.  No one is talking about where this $200 billion dollars is going to come from.  “Oh, just skim it off the top of the GDP.”  It is important to realize that that money is going to have to come from somewhere and it will not be from the Defense budget (sorry, liberals!)  Who is going to fork it over?

The bottom line is that the last thing we need right now is for the government to meddle with the free market.  Their manipulating is what got us into this problem in the first place.  Though I may have slept through most of my economics courses, I know that basic supply and demand is the ultimate balancer of prices.  All that the government’s proposed stimulus package is going to do is continue to artificially inflate the economy.  Well, my friend Peter Schiff* and I have a better idea: bleed the pig.  It is time for us to let things get bad.  The economy is absolutely decimated and the only way that it is going to get better is if we let things occur naturally.  Save some money.  Tighten our belts.  Why is everyone looking at this like it is a bad thing?  It is a chance for America to get out the filth that has been poisoning the economy for so long.  We have got to go back to the fundamentals of our founding fathers: hard work, dedication, and savings.  This is how we are going to save the United States of America. 

The last thing we need right now is for the government to pump a bunch of cash into America’s infrastructure.  You do not buy new shoes right after you lose your job; You make do with the shoes you have until you are in a comfortable enough position to get a new pair or until your old pair is completely destroyed.  Same goes for the infrastructure.  Let the market dictate when the roads are improved, not the government.  There is no overnight fix and until the government is willing to stand aside and let nature run its course, Americans are going to continue to suffer. 

 

*Disclaimer: I am in no way an acquaintance of Peter Schiff.  He is the ultra successful CEO of Euro Pacific Capital, as well as a best-selling author and I am writing for a blog that even my mom won’t read.

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