Saturday, January 29, 2011

Republcans Suddenly Think The Economy is Peachy and They're Taking Credit

The best proof that the jobs market is improving? Republicans want to take credit for it

The news that Republicans are taking credit for the recent upturn in the economy is annoying, but hardly surprising. When you win an election, you get to say whatever you want, and there's no denying the truth of the following two statements: The Republicans won the midterm elections, and the economy has been improving for the last several months.

The Republican argument, as explained by Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl, is that the election results combined with the tax cut deal injected a new sense of "certainty" into the economy, which immediately translated into job creation. How you evaluate that thesis depends in part on whether you think companies make their hiring plans according to their future expectation of what taxes will be like or on the much more pressing question of whether they need more workers to satisfy current demand. But a closer look at the numbers also undermines the GOP thesis. In 2010, new jobless claims benefits peaked in August, and then started a more or less steady decline, long before the election or any tax deal. A score of other economic indicators started flashing the green light around the same time. It all came too late to help Democrats in the midterm elections, but the change was there to see nonetheless.

However, objective truth means little in politics. The speed with which President Obama inherited responsibility for a disaster not remotely of his own making tells us all we need to know about who gets blame, or credit, for what's happening in the economy. As the economy continues to improve, Republicans will claim more and more credit, and many people will believe them. A full recovery might even help bolster the truly big lie, pushed by people like Newt Gingrich and Grover Norquist, that the entire financial crisis should be blamed on the fact that Democrats took control of the House and Senate in 2006.

If you're willing to believe that, then you deserve the dysfunctional government you are going to get. But there is one silver lining: The White House tends to get a larger share of the blame, or credit, for whatever happens in the economy than Congress. So while the Republican clamor of self-congratulation will grow louder and louder with each tick downward of the unemployment rate, most of that will get tuned out, while Obama's reelection chances slowly improve. And for every Democrat annoyed at Republicans' taking credit for economic growth, there will be plenty of Republicans who are driven mad by the fact that the White House, deserved or not, will benefit more.

Ever done some work, come up with a good idea or created something and someone else not only took credit for it, but deny they had anything do do with a multitude of previous disasters. That would be America's conservative Republican writ on a super size scale. These are the petulant five year olds who got old and never grew up. GOP Sen. Dick Lugar Chides Tea Party Movement For Offering Only ‘Cliché’ And No ‘Specifics’

As quoted by US News, Lugar said the conservative activists are “unhappy about life in America,” but traffic only in “cliché” and “are not able to articulate all the specifics”:

    “I think there are a great number of Americans, not just in Indiana, who are genuinely angry about how things have turned out for them. Sometimes they are unemployed or they have family members who have been unemployed or they are in situations in which they feel a heavy governmental restriction of their activities. In essence, they are unhappy about life in America and they want to express themselves.”

    Lugar says most just want to be heard, but really can’t focus on what’s bugging them. “We want this or that stopped or there is spending, big government—these are all, we would say, sort of large cliché titles, but they are not able to articulate all the specifics,” he says.

Republicans created the financial crisis and the largest defcit in U.S. history and now they are made as hell that Democrats have not figured out how to fix the Republican's disastrous legacy overnight. Why do Republicans hate America.