Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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George Will on Why Americans Aren’t Happy About Their Prosperity

People are better off than they were four years ago. And all the economic indicators should inspire confidence and gratitude. But Will explains that security-conscious Americans are suffering from "economic hypocondria." So they’re may be to embrace completely unncessary and probably counterproductive Democratic economic remedies. Our economy, contrary to Pelosi, has no need at all of being "jump started."
The Republican challenge: How do you tell self-described egalitarian meritocrats that your tolerance for risk is unreasonably low?
The Republicans’ (reasonable) whine: Why don’t people see that, despite the lack of fiscal restraint and an expensive war, Bush’s adminstration has been, on balance, good for American prosperity?

Discussions - 6 Comments

"And all the economic indicators should inspire confidence and gratitude."

ALL of the economic indicators should inspire confidence? Really, all of them?

And to whom do Americans owe their gratitude? If America is the meritocracy that the Right’s ideological assessment paints it as, then Americans need not be grateful to anyone other than themselves for their economic prosperity, except their god, of course. Surely you don’t mean that Bush is owed some gratitude?

(FYI - your link to the George Will article has been dead for several hours now, at least)

The surging markets aren’t really reason for Conservatives to be happy. The markets are reflecting the conclusion that the Bush administration isn’t really going to do anything serious about Tehran’s quest for means of widespread slaughter.

I would prefer the market at 5,000, yet our armoured columns moving in strength upon Tehran. Then a market cresting over 12,000, yet Tehran clearly dictating the pace of Mideast affairs.

"Why don’t people see that, despite the lack of fiscal restraint and an expensive war, Bush’s adminstration has been, on balance, good for American prosperity?"

How can unprecedented federal deficits be good for prosperity? Do you only think in the short term?

Craig, are there any economic indicators you have in mind that don’t inspire confidence? I’m honestly curious. I’m no economist, so I just go by the basics which all seem good: unemployment is around 5%, oil prices are down, the Dow is above 12,000, etc. To me economy = good. I’ve heard the housing market is down, and the government’s spending can’t be good for interest rates, but to my untrained eye this resembles the 90s, only this economy is resting on stable ground unlike the dot com economic boom.

Sorry about the defective link and/or my screw up. I was just sending its main idea up the flagpole to see if anyone saluted. As usual, leading experts disagree.

People who shorted the market expecting a seasonal slump lost a lot of money... A positive stock movement isn’t always a good thing... I suppose that what constitutes a good thing in terms of the economy depends upon expectations...Expectations for good or ill when they are fullfilled make those who planned on them happy... Isn’t that what elections are also about? Expectations? I suppose that is why I am more fed up with Republicans than with Democrats... my expectations are more easily met with one than the other. If Krugman is right then we live in the age of dimminished expectations...As we approach another election cycle lets ask what our expectations can reasonably be...Dow 20,000? No more Iran/North Korea worries? No more abortion? No more X? More of Y? Give me a break... We might as well say that we are going to bring about world peace, end hunger, solve global warming...and put an end to the suffering of humans and animals....If you ask me our expectations are too high.. and unrealistic... We live in an age of unrealistic expectations...and the optimist and pesimist alike are two sides of the same coin...Maybe it is just me... but I would like to see a politician say: I am going to quit blowing smoke up your ass...and tell it to you straight...This is what I stand for...but in the end that is tertiary... given the realities this is what I can expect to accomplish in two years: probably not much...but I will focus on issue X...make the deals that need to be made and not embarass myself, my party or the american people.

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