The PostScript bunker is fortified with the latest innovations in hyperbole-repelling gas and vicious attack rhetoricians. We are experts in forensics. We do not suffer fools gladly. Thus, we scanned the comments section of E.J. Dionne’s column promoting economic growth with eyes narrowed behind goggles we stole from shop class one time.
We did not have to engage. But we admit we were a bit disappointed.
A perfectly functioning comments section produces sharply writ, entertaining and generally devastating persuasive writing, one piece in response to another, the highest form of human communication one can employ without the use of flesh. But it must build, adapt and grow (METAPHOR!), or it circles the bunker pavilion, retracing its own steps forever.
As covered by the media, that is exactly what’s happening with the cultural conversation about America’s economy just now. There is so much information, and so many motives for people to skew their info, and so few ways to prove what, say, the market WILL do in the future, that the conversation gets stuck. And yet we beat on, boats against the current, finding new ways to say what we think and apparently holding out hope that a reader will be persuaded. Humans are so great.
We need either more or less taxation and/or government spending. See:
The economy will grow on its own if not suppressed with artificial (and temporary) government spending.
Public and private investment both foster economic growth. If you take away one, it is going to limit growth and possibly cause another recession.
Capital flight out of the U.S. is a prime problem. Before, each recession was fueled by new capital (yes, from the rich!) and it solved itself. Now our capital goes international to the best profit area and that is not in the U.S. We must entice the capital back even if we have to levy high taxes on profits from overseas sources.
The US is the world leader in biotechnology, and internet based companies. The former could be an amazing source of growth but the imbeciles in congress don’t want to fund research like they need to do. The US spends just over $30 billion to fund research through NIH (National Institute of Health) grants. That is the same amount congress allots itself for pork so they can buttress their chances for re-election.
So there we have it. Increased government spending and taxation will save and doom us, both.
But this is not merely a bunker phenomenon. The same conversation is happening on TV, in other forums online, in actual physical printed matter, in breath. And because the conversation isn’t progressing, the conclusion we come to makes no sense. We’re taxing low and spending high.