President Obama suggests that all economists agree that the best way to dig the economy out of its giant hole is to dig that hole faster and harder. Too much debt? Pile on more. Consumers not “buying enough”? Tax and borrow more to spend more to subsidize more buying.
I don’t get it. Were I Robinson Crusoe on a desert island I sure would want to consume. Berries and bananas, fish, maybe deer.
But I’d also want to produce. I’d make tools to help me to gather and hunt, and to prepare and store food. Desiring shelter, I’d realize that I can’t live in a hut unless I first build the hut.
On Crusoe’s island, there would be no politicians around to tax me to death before I could finish the hut. But here in our mixed economy, there sure is.
The Cato Institute, a D.C.-based think tank, has been spreading the word that not all economists believe that the best way to improve the economy is to nuke taxpayers and producers. At Cato.org I’ve heard economists insist that bailouts have NEVER worked to stimulate the economy. Further, Cato has taken out a full-page ad in major newspapers, like the Washington Post and the New York Times, disputing the notion that the solution to the recession is a massive government spending spree.
The Cato statement is signed by hundreds of economists. Many more signed it after the ad was published.
Will it help? I have the audacity to hope.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.