Thursday, September 9, 2010

Robert Reich on spreading the wealth around

Mr. Reich, the former Clinton cabinet officer, pundit, and Berkeley professor, in a recent editorial in the New York Times, stated that part of his economic plan would include "extending the earned income tax credit all the way up through the middle class, and paying for it with a tax on carbon." He also said that we hurt the economy by not raising taxes on the rich.

If you don't understand how misguided these ideas are, read Liberal Economics -- Insular, Misguided, and Obsolete and Robert Reich is wrong. The rich don't hurt US output and Robert Reich: Economic Illiterate.

Of course, I'm sure some of you will be able to find articles which state that Reich's theories are the best thing since sliced bread, as I did, but they'd be left-wing and rather misguided themselves, and we all know that modern liberalism (as opposed to classical liberalism) doesn't work.

Just for fun, let's re-visit with Henry Morgenthau, who was FDR's Treasury Secretary from 1934-1945, who wrote in 1939: "We have tried spending money. We are spending more than we have ever spent before and it does not work. I want to see this country prosperous. I want to see people get a job. I want to see people get enough to eat. We have never made good on our promises. ... I say after eight years of this administration we have just as much unemployment as when we started ... and an enormous debt to boot!"

Larry Elder compares this to the mess President Reagan inherited from Jimmy Carter:

President Reagan, in the early '80s, inherited an economy with 13.5 percent inflation, 21 percent prime interest rates, and an unemployment rate that reached 10.8 percent. He addressed this by doing the opposite of what Obama has done. Reagan sharply lowered taxes, dropping the top marginal rate from 70 percent to 28 percent. He slowed the rate of domestic spending. And he continued the deregulation policies of President Carter. Interest rates fell; inflation declined; and unemployment, after nearly two years, started dropping.
So why is our government sticking with the failed policies of FDR? Because they've been told over and over again that FDR's policies worked. This is what they were taught in college. They've not been exposed to other ideas, nor are they taught to think critically.

The way Mr. Elder sums it up: "Is it unfair to be skeptical of the opinions of left-wing economists — just because they're left-wing? Not if you agree that a) conservatives believe what they see and b) liberals see what they believe."

It worries me to think that Professor Reich is teaching our children this stuff.

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