Thursday, December 4, 2008

Will 12/4/07

Markets, Not Economists Will Help the Economy

My take on George Will's latest. His column was published in the Washington Post.

Summary: Government intervention in the economy has not had the results that liberals claim and such results as can be verified have often not been positive.


Because the economy's job-creation is not quite as predictable as a solar eclipse, Obama, by promising 2.5 million jobs by 2011, is a bit more audacious than was Mark Twain's Connecticut Yankee, who astonished King Arthur's court by commanding an eclipse that he knew was due. Still, because scores of millions of today's jobs will exist two years from now, who will be able to dispute a presidential claim that administration policies "saved" some portion of them?

My Views: If the nation's economists were so smart, then why did the September crash take everyone by surprise? Neither Obama, Bush, or McCain warned the nation in advance. The test of knowledge is prediction. A mathametician can predice that if you add 2 of something to 3 of something, you will end up with 5 somethings. A chemist can predict that if you combine the stuff in this beaker with the stuff in that beaker, you will have a blue liquid. You do, and that's what you get. This shows you that those guys know something. When do economists ever predict anything - especially something as major as what hit the country a few months ago?

Will's most telling point is the historical one that Reagan inherited an economy in 1981 that was worse than the one that Obama inherits today. With a philosophy that in opposite to that of Obama's today, the economy grew 6.3 million jobs in his first term. This is in line with the 1.5 million jobs per year the economy has grown since Eisenhower's first term began in 1953.

The private free enterprise system, not government control has historically grown the economy.

George Will almost didn't make it as a syndicated columnist. His style was considered too erudite for a general audience.

Whatever one thinks of his views, read his work for use of language and for how he marshals facts and uses logic.

Here's his Wiki bio.

His latest book is at the right.