Monday, December 6, 2010
Permanent Employment Crisis
Ben Bernanke appeared on Sixty Minutes last night and just as when his predecessor Alan Greenspan spoke, the world listened. Bernanke was less than sanguine that America's employment situation would improve any time soon. Clearly, the Federal Reserve Chairman remains much more concerned with what happens to his friends on Wall Street than with the day to day struggle on Main Street. And this is the problem for all the jiggering with monetary policy by the Fed and the bailouts and stimulus squandering by the Congress and the executive branch. Every day citizens have nothing to show, have gained nothing by in large after trillions (an enormous and heretofore almost inconceivable sum) have been spent. Jobless Americans in the millions have become a constant. And as long as the public accepts mendacity and mediocrity from the political class and the so-called elites, near ten percent unemployment (with joblessness counting those who are underemployed and those who have given up looking actually much higher) is bound to continue. We need more than the sunny optimism that Ronald Reagan was noted for, but the last great President was no Pollyanna but a steady-handed leader who had a concrete plan to restart the Carter-stalled US economic engine. Any prescription for growing the US out of recession should now involve a lower not higher capital gains tax and lower marginal tax rates or some incarnation of the "fair" or flat tax at a rate not exceeding the low twenty percents at the highest. So long as a committed redistributionist remains at the White House, these growth measures will never happen.