I say in my ‘about’ page that I don’t just parrot other people’s writings, but this is exactly something that I’ve been thinking lately:
Because a recovery is likely within five years, whichever party wins the White House in 2012 is likely to get the credit, and so too will its policy agenda. You can see how this will work. If Romney wins the presidency and the economy begins to rebound, Republicans will argue, and America’s experience will seem to show, that they were right all along: The stimulus was useless and the regulatory uncertainty the Obama administration created with its health-care plan and its talk of cap-and-trade and all the rest kept businesses from investing.
I believe that the economy will recover. I believe that we would have recovered eventually no matter what fiscal policies we pursued, but the President’s policies have kept us from crashing much harder than we already have. It would be a shame if credit for the recovery goes to people who tell us that the thing to do during an economic crisis is slash taxes for the wealthy and cut services for the poor.