President Obama is once again blaming everybody else for the sorry state of the economy. High gas prices were the fault of speculators. Now it’s the fault of Iran. The bankruptcy of Solyndra and the loss of the $500 million dollars he loaned the company is the fault of the Chinese. The deficit, Afghanistan, the debt, unemployment, the racial divide . . . you name it, and he’ll blame it . . . on someone else.
“Blameshift: a process in business and government wherein the blame for something bad is shifted from person to person.” No one would argue that President Obama inherited a fiscal mess. But there comes a time when you to stop blaming George Bush for everything. While I am not a fan of many of former President Bush’s policies (e.g., the war in Iraq, No Child Left Behind, unfunded drug prescription plan, etc.), he never blamed other people or previous administrations for what he had inherited.
Ronald Reagan inherited an economy that was worse than what President Obama inherited.
Carter’s legacy is now inextricably linked to the “Misery Index.” No president in the history of the country had a Misery Index as high as Jimmy Carter’s. Carter had an average Index of 16.27 percent during his term (1977–80). When he finally left Washington in 1980 is was at an all-time high of 21.98 percent. . . . 16 percent inflation, 22 percent interest rates, and 70 percent marginal tax rates. . .
Reagan inherited a negative GDP growth rate of -0.3% in 1980. By 1988 it was at 4.1%. Unemployment was at 5.5% in 1988 that included a net job increase of about 21 million. The inflation rate of 13.5% in 1980 fell to 4.1% at the end of his second term in 1988. This turnaround was achieved when Reagan significantly reduced the maximum tax rate – a tax the rich scheme – by lowering the top marginal tax rate from 70% to 50%. That was the first step. In 1986 he further reduced the rate to 28%. The federal deficit fell from 6% of GDP in 1983 to 3.2% of GDP in 1987. The Federal deficit in Reagan’s final budget fell to 2.9% of GDP.
Obama and his defenders are blaming everybody for our failing economy. As has been mentioned, George Bush is at fault. In addition, it’s military spending1, the Tokyo earthquake, the Tea Party, political “gridlock,” the rich who refuse to spend their money, the rich for not paying enough in taxes, etc. Obama, the Democrats, and the media have blamed everybody but the economic policies of those directing and guiding this present administration.
I used to believe that President Obama and the people with whom he has surrounded himself were ignorant of economics. I’m not so sure anymore. These Leftists know what works, but they don’t want personal economic empowerment policies to succeed. They disdain the private sector of economic disparity. They believe in equality of outcome, not equality of opportunity. If some people are making more money and are more prosperous than some other people, then the affluent need to be punished for their inequality of success.
In the final analysis, the blame resides with those who serve as the economic engine for America. The blameshifters want to kill the goose that lays the golden eggs. That way we’ll all be hungry and therefore equal.
- For fiscal year 2010, Department of Defense spending amounts to 4.7% of GDP. This is near an historic low for the United States since it peaked in 1944 at 37.8% of GDP. [↩]
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