But what’s Obama’s position on Homo sapiens marriage?

(Hat tip to Reason’s Radley Balko.)

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5 Responses to But what’s Obama’s position on Homo sapiens marriage?

  1. James K says:

    Fun fact: whenever I read the word Kenyan, I tend to read it as Keynesian 🙂

    Personally, I don’t think he’s Keynesian, it would certainly be very unusual if he was. Keynesians may believe in running deficits in recessions, but they also believe in running surpluses in boom times. The only politician I’ve ever heard of that did that was New Zealand’s last Minister of Finance, Michael Cullen.

  2. Michael Enquist says:

    JK,

    Supposedly, there was a sign just like that at the John Stewart rally over the weekend. Ed Brayton’s “Dispatches” has a post about some of the signs.

  3. Michael Heath says:

    It doesn’t appear that Obama has formally studied economics, at least not arduously enough to start taking postions on economics. Instead it appears he’s surrounded himself with economists who mostly support Democrats where he’s done his best to understand their descriptions at a very elementary level and seek to optimize what they prescribe. Those policy prescriptions have ended-up well short of economists prescriptions given: Republican obstructionism, Congressional Democrats justifiably in fear of losing their next election – which was largely validated, Democratic inability to communicate in a way that resonates, and voters’ economic illiteracy.

    JamesK stated, “Personally, I don’t think he’s Keynesian, it would certainly be very unusual if he was. Keynesians may believe in running deficits in recessions, but they also believe in running surpluses in boom times.”

    The Democrats established a surplus in the late-1990s here in the states, in spite of the fact their liberals instead wanted to invest in job retraining because they were scared our job climate would worsen as free trade and the global economy grew. During the 2000s when the GOP was in power and was deficit spending, we require congressional and presidential passage of legislation to create new debt ceilings. Those same Democrats repeatedly tried to insert amendments to GOP bills to raise the debt ceiling with a “pay-go” policy, which would have required nearly all new spending be financed with tax revenues rather than borrowing (either by cutting spending or increasing taxes). The Democrats have also made two attempts since they took power in Jan-09 to implement pay-go and reform the budgetary process so we can eradicate the deficit and run surpluses in order to pay down the debt – at least relative to GDP, the GOP filibustered all those attempts so now we’re left with a Presidential Commission on budgetary reform. The Democrats even went so far as to propose a congressional committee where Republicans would have enjoyed equal representation rather than serve based on their minority position in this Congressional session. The presidential types of commissions’ results are nearly always ignored, we’ll find out if that will be true of this soon since I believe their results are due in December of this year.

    It’s frustrating that our culture doesn’t promote benchmarking beyond our own shores outside the business community. I think most Americans would be astonished at how aggressive China was at attacking this recession and the resounding results of their aggressiveness. Their stimulus spending was 10X our’s relative to GDP, they also both cut taxes but also raised some taxes they thought wouldn’t harm aggregate demand. If we did look off-shore for lessons learned we’d all be Keynesians in some aspects of the theory and it’d be a household word, both in good times (active fiscal policy, running surpluses, optimizing/increasing tax rates) and bad (active fiscal policy, deficit spending and cutting taxes).

    Another interesting experiment is the U.K.’s contra-Keynesian approach of fiscal consolidation, where they hope their belt-tightening will result in sufficiently increased investor confidence to make capital investments adequate enough to restore growth. I know our conservatives are watching that carefully and praying it works since it would provide one historical precedent their talking points aren’t mere rhetoric as they are now rather than based on economic principles plus such success would help reinforce their fierce desire to maintain a rigid ideology.

  4. D.A. Ridgely says:

    Oddly enough, I feel like maybe I missed the point.

  5. James K says:

    Michael Heath:

    The Democrats established a surplus in the late-1990s here in the states, in spite of the fact their liberals instead wanted to invest in job retraining because they were scared our job climate would worsen as free trade and the global economy grew.

    Neither party had full control over your government at that time, so I don’t think it’s reasonable to attribute that to either party. Plus, the tech bubble made it a period of unreasonably high revenue.

    The Democrats have also made two attempts since they took power in Jan-09 to implement pay-go and reform the budgetary process so we can eradicate the deficit and run surpluses in order to pay down the debt – at least relative to GDP, the GOP filibustered all those attempts so now we’re left with a Presidential Commission on budgetary reform.

    Running smaller deficits isn’t the same as balancing the budget. A deficit of more than about 4% of GDP just isn’t sustainable over the long run. The Democrats are certainly more fiscally responsible than the Republicans (tax and spend is more responsible than borrow and spend certainly) but reality doesn’t grade on a curve. The deficit has to come down a lot over the next 20-30 years, and the longer your government waits, the more painful the process will be.

    Their stimulus spending was 10X our’s relative to GDP, they also both cut taxes but also raised some taxes they thought wouldn’t harm aggregate demand.

    China doesn’t have a massive national debt and is going through a period of very high growth. Furthermore that growth is being driven by the fact their capital stock is at sub-saturation levels so they can sink huge amounts of capital into their country and get good investments out of it. This is not a strategy the US can copy.

    I’m not totally anti-Keynesian. I think that Keynesian theory is probable enough that it’s a respectable option in the face of a recession, I just don’t think it’s probable enough to make it the only respectable option. And the more debt your government holds, the more attractive austerity becomes because if you end up in too much debt the effects will be severely unpleasant, as in “massive cuts to public sector employment, entitlements and welfare in the middle of a recession” unpleasant.

    I know our conservatives are watching that carefully and praying it works since it would provide one historical precedent their talking points aren’t mere rhetoric as they are now rather than based on economic principles plus such success would help reinforce their fierce desire to maintain a rigid ideology.

    Austerity has some historical precedents, there was Thatcher in the 1980s and the post WWII demobilisation in the US. Neither of these had the disastrous effect the Keynesians were predicting. Of course, that doesn’t change the fact that the Republican talking points are mere rhetoric rather than being based on economic principles.

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