Monday, October 27, 2008

No matter who you vote for next Tuesday, it'll be the wrong choice

A fantastically interesting read on the economy can be found in the Wall Street Journal today by clicking here. The article is written by Arthur Laffer, the napkin guy. I hate to keep mentioning the economy in this space, but it's an issue that effects all of us and will continue effecting all of us for a long time. So I'll recap the article's finer points by creating a fake Q and A between myself and Mr. Laffer.

Me: Arthur, love your work. You're a true patriot. First question, what are your thoughts on the government bailout?

Arthur: Well it's always a nice gesture to alleviate hardships. Buying defaulted mortgages and injecting capital into banks seems like a very nice thing to do. But you have to remember that the government doesn't create; it just redistributes. Whenever the government bails someone out of trouble, they always put someone else into trouble. Also, for every $100 billion in bailout money, the government spends at least $130 billion in taxes, where the $30 billion extra is the cost of getting government involved.

Me: No shit.

Arthur: No, none at all.

Me: I suppose you have some statistics that would back that up.

Arthur: Of course I do. You can read them all in the article. I'd cite them right now but I doubt you'd want to type all that.

Me: Good point. And thank you for your concern. Bottom line though is that you don't feel that a government bailout is the answer.

Arthur: No, I don't. But not only that, the bailout isn't the only thing they're proposing. Right now, they are preparing for a new $300 billion stimulus package in the next Congress. Each of these actions separately increases the tax burden on the economy and does nothing to encourage economic growth. Giving more money to people when they fail and taking more money away from people when they work doesn't increase work. And the stock market knows it. These plans are horribly short-sighted.

Me: Yeah I think we're seeing that right now. So the big-money question Mr. Laffer is this: if the economy is my #1 concern going into next week's election, for whom should I vote that would best serve my interests?

Arthur: You mean the country's interests? Or your interests?

Me: Ah, well played. The country's interests.

Arthur: Well Reagan's dead, and Clinton can't run. So between Obama and McCain, I'd choose option 3.

Me: What's option 3?

Arthur: Exactly.


  1. Jerms Says:

    i am now scared shitless. prior to reading that i was only half scared shitless. thanks a lot brian.