Category Archives: Economy

FDR Is The Worst President Of All Time

Who is the best president of all time? Most polls I have seen put FDR in the prestigious top spot, but does he really deserve such a distinction. It seems that merely being president during trying times regardless of how the president’s policies affect the country is what matters the most. The legend is that FDR came riding in on his white horse after Hoover ruined the economy, and FDR made the people feel safe and secure under wing. He cared, he felt their pain, and he did everything within his power to make their lives better—his intentions were noble and gracious. Well, let’s consider a few facts. Unemployment during his terms stayed between 15 and 20% except for a brief drop to around 14% in early1937 which was the result of massive government spending in order to buy the 1936 elections. The unemployment rate just before the war was around 18%. Does this sound like a successful presidency? Are intentions all that matter, or do results ever come into play? If you intend to give a man a free hair cut and end up cutting off his ear would the haircut be judged a success? The only way to judge the success of any policy or individual is by judging the overall results, and the overall results of the Roosevelt presidency were disastrous.

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Hoover has received the blame for the Great Depression by most while FDR has skated. How is it that FDR could take Hoover’s policies, put them on steroids, and not receive any of the blame for the depression? I would say that Hoover created the depression, but that FDR created the Great Depression. FDR’s policy of attacking business, meddling in the private sector with his business cartels, his meddling in the agriculture sector via the AAA, and his tax raising propensities created an atmosphere of fear, distrust, and uncertainty. How can business operate in such an environment? Does any of this sound familiar? The simple answer is that it can’t. This is a lesson that President Obama will certainly learn, for he has fashioned his presidency after that of FDR, even lifting some of FDR’s phrases such as he did with Deval Patrick’s “just words” passage.

Hoover and FDR deserve equal credit for creating the Great Depression. They both meddled in the economy, by setting wage and price levels, production levels, spending oodles of money on public works programs, and involving the federal government in unconstitutional activities other than those previously mentioned—they both did it. If we were to make a movie about the presidencies of Hoover and Roosevelt it would be named “Dumb and Dumber”—Hoover being Dumb, and FDR being Dumber. Hoover did exercise a little restraint, but FDR was as free as a bird when it came to exercising power over the private sector. FDR was the closest this country has ever come to being a centrally planned economy, after all, that was the fad of the time with Mussolini and Stalin being admired adoringly by some in FDR’s administration and his brains trust.

It is said by many that the war ended the Great Depression because of massive government spending, and they will point out the low unemployment rates of the time. Removing many millions of men from the work force by conscripting them into military service will reduce the unemployment rate, but merely having a low unemployment rate is not necessarily a sign of prosperity. You will have a difficult time convincing a soldier who is standing in a fox hole reeking of urine and feces and with the body of his dead buddy lying next to him that he is somehow standing in prosperity. Building ships to be sank, planes to be blown out of the sky, and bombs to be blown into a million pieces is not a good use of resources, and does not create prosperity. FDR, I think put it perfectly when he said that Dr. New Deal was replaced with Dr. Win the War. Very simply, the war distracted him from his destructive domestic policies, and his timely death meant that the United States would no longer be victimized by him.

Americans Are Cry Babies

Sometimes I just have to puke when I hear individuals whine and moan about how the President doesn’t feel their pain. We hear this complaint about Obama all the time, and heard it about Bush when he flew over the ravages of Katrina and merely looked out the window of Air Force 1, how dare he. What exactly do these people want? Are these people so weak and pitiful that they must have the sympathies of the President of the United States in order to achieve some level of comfort in their apparently pathetic lives? What makes them think the President actually gives a fat rat’s behind about them? What makes them think that the president can implement policy that will target them directly, and shower them with prosperity. It is so pathetic that many of the people of the greatest nation on God’s green earth are so hopelessly weak and in need of attention—I think this pretty much says it all.

The people of today like to think of themselves as being so much more intellectually advanced than our ancestors. The terrible truth is that they are not. The people of today are not one iota more advanced than those who lived thousands of years ago. Case in point: What was the first thing that Americans nationwide went out and did immediately after the attacks on 9/11—bought gasoline? With a little bit of thought instead of a knee jerk Neanderthal reaction, those who rushed out to buy gas would have realized that two planes flying into buildings would have absolutely no effect on the amount of gasoline in the tanks at the local gas stations, and that it would have no effect on the production and refinement of petroleum products. But, oh no, there were no such thought processes, just plain ole panic. This goes hand in hand with the, “when will the government take care of me?” psychosis.

The last thing I want is a politician feeling my pain and worse yet trying to do anything about it. This is the problem with politics today and many Americans. These weak individuals want their pain felt and for politicians to do something about it, boo hoo cry me a river. Unfortunately those Americans waiting for the politicians to come riding in on a white horse will be sorely disappointed. Politicians, no matter how much they bellow, cannot fix what ails us individually, only the individual can do that. They will simply say they are helping a large group such as the middle class, after extending the middle class of course to include everybody except the top 2% of wage earners, and then sit back and wait for the votes to come pouring in at election time.

Americans must toughen up. All of this whining and bellyaching about oh poor pitiful me will not make anybody’s life better, and I guarantee you that the President of the United States can’t do anything about your personal circumstances. Individuals must take control of their lives and do the things that will benefit them. In the end, the person who cares about you the most is yourself. You wouldn’t leave your personal prosperity to the control of some unknown individual across town, so why would you leave it to someone in Washington D.C.

Obama Is Obtuse When It Comes To The Economy

Obama and those like him will never get it when it comes to the economy. They view the economy as something to be toyed with in order to engineer some kind of social order to their liking. I recall Obama in one of his numerous speeches where he said, “So we can manage the economy.” Here lies the problem. Obama in his delusion actually believes that the economy can be managed, and he just the guy to do it. He’s certainly not the first to live this delusion. Herbert Hoover in his delusion turned a recession into a depression with his desire to manage the economy, and then FDR in his delusion turned Hoover’s depression into the Great Depression with his attempt to manage the economy. This managing the economy delusion has been tried over and over the world over, and it never works, never. Think about this for a moment. The President, 535 members of Congress, and a hand full of bureaucrats actually believe they can manage the billions of economic decisions that 300 million Americans randomly make on a daily basis. Does that seem possible?

I know that many see the economy as something so complex that it can be understood only by those who have numerous letters after their names and years of education and training so that when they speak about economics it sounds like a recipe rolling off the lips of Julia Child or Emeril Lagasse. It really isn’t that difficult however, if you stick to the basics and keep in mind exactly what the economy is and why it exists. Let’s start with basic number one. It helpful to remember that economies have existed for thousands of years when life was much simpler so don’t get caught up in only thinking about it in today’s terms. The economy is very simply the result of each and every person existing, meaning being alive and kicking; and the resulting consumption that takes place in order to stay alive and kicking and enjoy some of the niceties of life. Basic number two: There is only so much stuff, meaning there will never be enough stuff to satisfy all of our wants, and so the market in which we must pay for the stuff we want is a rationing process that will insure our needs can be met. For instance, if a grocery store priced all of its products free, the shelves would always be bare and new stocks would disappear as soon as they were put on the shelf. This would create shortages, and many would have to go without, so price rationing insures that individuals get only what they need, which leaves some for others.

Much about economics is merely theory, such as the belief that government spending can stimulate the economy and that each dollar spent by the government has a multiplier effect on the economy. The multiplier theory posits the notion that for instance $1.00 of government spending creates say, $1.50 in economic growth, because that $1.00 is then spent by the person receiving it, and it is then spent by the next person in line, and so on. Sort of like the ripples created by throwing a rock in a pond. This really is just theory for there is no way in heaven or on earth to know if there really is a multiplier effect, because the multiplier is merely a contrivance and a self serving tool used by the big government types to justify their big spending desires.

Another silly notion by those who believe they can manage the economy is the pump priming theory. Just prime the pump with a few dollars, crank away on the handle, let the multiplier effect take hold, and voila! jobs galore. Those who support this silliness believe that flooding the economy with money stolen from the citizens and money plucked from the money tree will boost consumer spending which in turn will create jobs. This is where the “manage the economy” notion falls flat on its face. The human beings mentioned in paragraph one cannot make individual citizens want and need more than they want and need. This theory really has less to do with creating jobs than it does with making those who advocate for it, feel better about themselves; the pat me on the back syndrome.

Another thing that must be discussed is the GDP, and how it is manipulated. The GDP is calculated with the following formula: GDP = private consumption + gross investment + government spending + (exports – imports). Private consumption, gross investment and export/imports are all activities that are the result of Americans making spontaneous personal and business decisions independent of one another. The government spending input of the GDP makes the entire GDP figure bogus, because this input is easily manipulated by a hand-full of individuals in Washington D.C. by merely increasing government spending. If they don’t like the GDP, they only need to spend money like it grows on trees and then they can brag about how their economic policies have cause the economy to grow, when in fact it isn’t growing, because the economy will only grow as a result of consumers spending their money on things they want.

When politicians talk about the economy, all they talk about are jobs, jobs, jobs. The problem with this focus is that an economy can exist without jobs, because it has in the past. The economy is not the result of jobs, but jobs are the result of the economy, so if politicians want the economy to grow they must become consumer oriented, which means a free market, instead of employee oriented. It is said by the big government types that the recent economic meltdown was caused by the free market. Well, the market hasn’t been free since the Federal Reserve was put in place in 1914 and in particular the heavy handed intrusions by Herbert Hoover into the economy. A market completely free from eugenics is the only market that will reach its most efficient state, a market economy that is allowed to meet the needs of the consumer first and foremost.

The economy is too complex to be managed by a handful of human beings in Washington. These are individuals who are little different from you neighbor. So, would you trust you neighbor to manage the economy. All of the problems that exist in the economy today, such as high health care costs, the housing meltdown, the Great Depression, gasoline shortages, high education costs, and on and on and on, can be traced to federal government policies. As C.S. Lewis put it, “those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.” God help us!