Free Markets, Free People

Obama: Doubling down on economic ignorance

Ever have one of those days?  My DSL has been down for 2 days, and I’m currently sitting in a public library trying to get some work done and sending out this post. 

And I was actually going to concentrate on work until I saw this article about something Obama said about the Buffett Rule:

President Barack Obama argued Sunday that his calls for wealthier Americans to pay a greater share of taxes aren’t about sharing the wealth, but about getting the American economy on a path for solid growth.

“That is not an argument about redistribution. That is an argument about growth,” Obama said in response to a reporter’s question at a news conference in Colombia. “In the history of the United States, we grow best when our growth is broad based.”

Broad based growth is not driven by heavily taxing one income class, Mr. Obama.  Nor is broad based growth driven by government spending (i.e. “redistribution” or “sharing the wealth”).

Broad based growth is driven by private enterprises having confidence in the economy and finding incentives to invest in both business and hiring.ISSdriv_101206.png

The “Buffet Rule” doesn’t do anything to provide those incentives or inspire that confidence.  In fact, it seems to be mostly a tax of desperation.  The numbers just don’t support the supposition that it will drive anything but more government spending, and, frankly, not much of that.

This is class warfare plain and simple.  It is also an attempt to offer up the rich as a panacea to the revenue problem blamed as the reason we’ve seen government borrow multi-trillions of dollars. 

There is no revenue problem.  There is a spending problem.  And taxing billionaires won’t solve that problem.  In fact it will likely exacerbate it. 

More importantly, the words Obama has spoken speak to two things: a) a deep seated ignorance of economics and b) a deep seated belief that government is the answer to all ills.

Both are dangerous and promise even more economic woes in our future. 

We can’t afford that.


Twitter: @McQandO

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51 Responses to Obama: Doubling down on economic ignorance

  • It is not economic ignorance. It is animus.

  • When a government doesn’t have enough revenue to fund huge projects—like the interstate highway project of the 50’s—then the population and the nation in general suffers from world status regression.

    • @tadcf That would be like your penis envy…???

    • @tadcf More “WOW” talking points. Revenue to fund huge projects….like GM, or Solyndra. How much revenue IS half a billion there sport (what Solyndra received in loans). A billion here, a billion there, soon you’re talking about serious money right? Better we should fund trips to Colombia for a vacation recon, right?
      Analysts Note – They’re running low on good stuff over at Washing Machine Charlie’s field. Latest run was made with devices packed with vinegar and sodium bicarbonate.

      • @looker The moonbattery is working on organic biomass methane bombs, thinking it was cutting-edge. The weaponeers were disappointed to learn they’ve been bombarding us with bullshit for years.

        • @Ragspierre “world status regression”
          Maybe he’s trying to be the Henny Youngman of the left, comical one liners. “Take my President….please”.

        • @looker Crack, ba-boom, ching…

    • @tadcf “When a government doesn’t have enough revenue to fund huge projects” 98% of the time it’s because the government has a spending problem not a revenue problem.

    • @tadcf Thanks for the laugh. Is this Ott Scerb in disguise? I found that phrase ‘world status regression’ particularly laughable.

      • @timactual Well it CAN’T be Erb, he thought any decline of the US was a good thing. At least punchy here understands decline isn’t a desirable achievement.

    • @tadcf “the population and the nation in general suffers from world status regression.” Will another downgrade of the U.S. credit rating cause further world status regression?

    • There is plenty of money dummy, the problem is that your buddies in the Democrat party have all spent it on transfer payments and payoffs to unions.@tadcf

    • @tadcf Explain why Obama cancelled XL pipeline then. Privately funded huge project….cancelled.

      Also, why did he cancel Yucca Mountain when he could have easily included that to be paid for by the Stimulus.

      BTW, we did find a couple million dollars to spend on “Breathe Easy Jakarta”

      Jakarta, you know, capital of one of the 57 states.

  • From my reading, the Buffet Rule will bring in around $4 billion a year at best. Pocket change.

    Hell they could save that much just cutting back on the parties at the GSA and SS!

  • First he was saying the Buffet Rule was to pay down the debt and deficit. That was proven wrong. Then he said it was fairness. That was shot down and didn’t poll well. Now he’s saying it’s to help the economy. Mr. President I think the economy would recover better and faster if you quit trying to help.

  • On another blog someone described the Buffett rule as ‘a shiny object’. What a great metaphor.

  • Obama lives the real Buffet Rule… “Do as I SAY, NOT as I DO”

    • @Ragspierre Yeah, wan’t that jus special? Prolly shouldn’t mention the girls though, Baracka’s family is strictly off limits. Let’s mock Ann Romney instead.

      • @looker I have profound sympathy for those girls. Having at least one really pathological narcissist parent is very hard.

  • You are making an argument that shows economic ignorance, tries to draw conclusions from very meager data, and ignores the fact that the last thirty years was a failed experiment in free market economics and deregulation. What happened was that as tax rates on the wealthiest lowered, the money did NOT get invested in creating a sustainable economy, but went to bubble chasing (an effort for easy money) and foreign goods. The reason why middle class growth is important is that it shows where there is demand for sustainable investment, and helps feed investment. When the relative gap between the middle class and wealthy grow, the propensity for bubbles to arise also grows. Lower taxes led to bubbles. Deregulation led to bubbles and Wall Street making obscene amounts of profit while not benefiting the economy. Countries that followed our path include Iceland and Ireland, two countries the deregulating free marketeers tried to posit as successes. Look now. To pretend that the three decade experiment in deregulation, tax cuts and blind faith in markets (economic theory is a vast over simplification of reality, free marketeers believe the simplified version and don’t take into account the social, political and economic complexities) is to be out of touch with reality.

    • @scotterb Right… “Free markets” existed over the last thirty years. Bubbles come from a “disparity” in income. Lower taxes create bubbles, and there is no MONETARY cause >>> effect. Markets were so “deregulated” they went crazy. The middle class had no part to play in the housing bubble, it was all rich people and Wall Street, and…of course…government’s IMMENSE distortions of both markets and industry standards had no effect. Naturally, you cannot provide any mechanism to support your bullshit…just your usual conclusory blah, blah, Collectivist blah. Seriously, Erp…what a moron.

      • @Ragspierre His daily talking points finally coincided with something McQ posted so it was time to charge in.

      • @Ragspierre But, but, he has studied economics!! He has a copy of “Economics for
        Dummies”. In mint condition. Unlike the rest of us illiterate redneck bumpkins. Gosh, I wish I could read, so I could study economics too.

        • Oh, wait, I did study economics. My minor, and a continuing interest. Gee, I guess I can read after all. That must be why I have all those Econ. books on my bookshelf. Must have had a senior moment.

    • @scotterb McQ, where is that “what a total load of crap” button???

    • @scotterb So, tell us then, you STILL think the Buffet rule is going to fix, what, exactly? That it’s going to provide more revenue to be spent? It’s going to balance what, exactly? Aside form take money from rich people that will be pissed away in government spending like loans to Solyndra and failing green power companies and maybe to prop up the government deficit spending for another month, WHAT is it going to fix Scott?

      • @looker It will be a boon to foreign entrepreneurs, as American capital seeks new, less hostile homes.

        • @Ragspierre You mean as has been demonstrated in every location where the mobile wealthy have been put upon to pay their ‘fair share’?

        • @looker Yeah. JUST like that.

    • @scotterb Not to mention your data….that first graph, show us what Scott? The first one….what does it mean?
      See if you can explain why the LEFT half of the graph has no data like that AVG $64,500 income number, but the RIGHT half does. Why is that Scott?
      Let me ask a simple question that most adults have to ask themselves once they grow up and get into the real world where they are paid for their work – do you REALLY believe that there is no cap on your salary for the profession you choose? Do you REALLY believe that you can just keep making more and more money every year, getting a 10% raise EVERY year, till you retire after say, 34 years. Do you REALLY believe that’s how it works in the real world Scott?

    • @scotterb Hint Scott, this post was primarily about the Buffet Rule, and the insistence that the rich “pay their fair share” AND how somehow applying the Buffet rule to the rich, in the mind of that no-nothing idiot in the White House will somehow allow ALL of us to grow. See if you can explain to me how continuing to tax YOU at your present rate, continuing to spend like drunken sailors who’ve looted the bursers office, and taking another $million from the pockets of every millionaire in the U.S. is going to allow YOU…YOU and the rest of us who aren’t ‘the rich’ … to GROW.
      I’m waiting.

      • @looker Will the Buffet Rule apply to Buffet? Nope. Obama? LOL! It WILL hit a lot of people with Sub-S corps, though. The very people who make the bulk of new jobs. But, in reality, it will NEVER see the light of day. Even the Deemocrats know it is radioactive, steaming crap.

      • @looker “I’m waiting.”——————Patience is a virtue, and if you are going to wait for a coherent response from Erp, you are very virtuous indeed.

    • @scotterb And that extra red bar over there when we weren’t ALL growing together….how come that bar isn’t over on the left when we WERE all growing together. Is there a chance it would look a lot like it looks on the right for the 1% Scott?

      • Ah, 1979….the Carter years…when we were all ‘growing’ together. And 1972-73 when the government was issuing wage and price freezes and Phase 1 and we joked how Phase 3 would be the sale of Rhode Island and other small states. Ah yes, good times, good times.

    • @scotterb That first graph shows that income grew for ALL in the last thirty years, meaning even the poor are better off now than before. It also shows that success was rewarded. You just showed that the income part of the system worked perfectly.

      With income up among all brackets, why is the government in so much debt? Evil tax cuts must have shrunk the tax collections -except that tax income hit its peak after the Bush tax cuts went into effect. If not income, the only thing left to blame is spending.

      • @CT Phil America, where the poor wear $200.00 sneakers, carry cell phones, have computers, own cars, and flat panel televisions. Yes, the poor….indeed.

    • That old failed experiment crap again. You know damn well that there has been nothing whatsoever like deregulation of anything in the last twenty years. The only real deregulation we have ever had is deregulation or the trucking industry and the Airlines, both of which were great benefits to the public.

      It is amazing how invincibly ignorant you are. Ireland, Iceland, Greece, The United States, none of us are in financial trouble because of free markets or tax cuts you dolt. We are in financial trouble because of overwhleming DEBT!!! Government and public debt. And also you are simply wrong, stupidly wrong in asserting that lower capital gains rates do not and have not lead to greater investment, they do and have. But investment is only one part of the picture. When monetary policy and governments promote easy money, that is when you end up with a bubble.@scotterb

    • @scotterb You know, someone with training in research or analysis might notice that the two parts of the graph have different sources. Someone with knowledge of statistics or econometrics might wonder about the methodologies and data sets used, among other things. Someone with knowledge of economics and history might wonder where you get such outlandish ideas. Perhaps you could find someone on your faculty with such qualifications to vet your material before you publish it; sort of a ‘peer review’. It might save you some further embarrassment.

    • @scotterb “Fairness” is overrated. In fact, in many cultures, there is no equivalent. That aside, the “Buffet Rule” was scored to raise approximately $4 billion from some 400 upper income earners. Whether it is fair or not is really immaterial. $4 billion doesn’t even amount to a “down payment” on an annual deficit of roughly $1,300 billion. It is merely a “distraction” from the real problems. Frankly, I’ve come to believe that this President’s lack of any useful grip on the simple theories of macro-economics as they apply to the federal deficit and debt explain why he has failed to release his college transcripts.

    • @scotterb “…the last thirty years was a failed experiment in free market economics and deregulation…”

      No, it wasn’t. That’s the lie you and your ilk continuously try to hoist upon your audience to try to convince them that freedom of commerce is a failure and that only government control can “save” us from this failure.

  • Don’t we already have something called the “Alternative Minimum Tax” which is supposed to do the same thing as the Buffett rule?

  • Not a snowball’s chance. Senate knocked down the Buffett Fool, and it would NEVER pass in the House.

    • @Ragspierre That’s a feature not a bug…Obama needs this to be a live issue and since his voter bloc doesn’t understand the Senate is Democratically controlled, he can rail about Congress all he wants.

  • It is amazing that the likes of Erb hate freedom so much that they attack it even though it is the only path to prosperity.

    • @Don S Yeah, it really, really is hard to understand. But you have to live in Realityville…so there it is…

  • How about a 90% tax on the royalties from speeches and books of former and present federal government employees, elected and unelected, about their time and experiences while government employees? Hey, there comes a point when they have just taken enough.

  • Speaking of MORE economic ignorance…
    Obama. Today. Or any other time he speaks…