Thursday, October 13, 2011

Are You Kidding Me?

That's really the reaction I had after first seeing this.

A large group of Senate Republicans unveiled a jobs bill Thursday, saying they were tired of hearing President Obama assert they had not put forward a plan to spur hiring and jump-start the economy.

The bill is something of a greatest hits of Republican economic proposals. It calls for tax reform that lowers tax rates, repeal of the new healthcare law, a balance budget amendment to the Constitution and expansion of offshore oil drilling.

Seriously? Seriously? Where do I even begin? Perhaps with a quick debunk from Greg Sargent?

The Associated Press recently did a bracing fact check and concluded that Labor Department data show that under Obama, just two-tenths of 1 percent of layoffs have been due to government regulation. McClatchy recently canvassed small businesses across the country and found little evidence that it’s a factor.

And Bruce Bartlett, a top policy adviser in the administrations of Reagan and the elder Bush, recently concluded that worry about regulatory uncertainty “is a canard invented by Republicans” and “not a serious effort to deal with high unemployment.” Bartlett argued that the focus on regulation is rooted in the GOP’s lack of any real ideas to create jobs.

So for all the G-O-TEA talk of "SOE-SHUL-IZM!!!!" destroying any and every job in sight, the facts say otherwise. Actually, government regulation is needed to prevent a market economy from falling apart on its own... As it nearly did in 2008 after the first wave of financial industry turmoil.

And are Republicans serious about using the old Balanced Budget Amendment (BBA) trick again? Seriously? Not even Paul Ryan's teabagger fantasy of a budget would be legal under it! No fewer than five Nobel Prize winning economists have begged Congress not to pass it and risk sending America into an even worse recession! The BBA game is really getting old and tiresome. We all know it won't pass, and we all know it would harm, not help, the fragile economy in need of more investment if passed.

And really, another cry for "Drill, Baby, Drill!!!"? What on earth are they thinking?! Desert Beacon explained quite well on Tuesday that future prospects for more and better job creation lie with small and mid-sized renewable energy firms, not with big, fat cat fossil fuel corporations that have misused current subsidies from us the taxpayers for far too long.

“…start-ups across a variety of areas — solar power, biofuels and energy conservation among them — are getting increased financing from venture capitalists and lenders at a time when other small companies are cutting back and being turned away by investors. And many are hiring more staff, boosting marketing efforts and expanding geographically.

Alternative energy “has been the brightest sector in venture capital over the last year,” says Brian Fan, research director at Cleantech Group, an industry trade organization in San Francisco. “Everyone is thinking it’s going to be a big priority of the incoming administration.”

While the overall volume of venture-capital deals sank last year, investments in clean-technology companies totaled $8.4 billion, up nearly 40% from 2007, according to Cleantech Group. In the third quarter alone, venture capitalists poured $2.6 billion into clean technology, a quarterly record. In the fourth quarter, they invested $1.7 billion.]

So what exactly is this "new" "jobs bill" from Senate Republicans held captive by the "tea party" fringe? Well, it just sounds to me like the same old s--t we're used to hearing from them. It's just presented in a "new" shiny package in hopes of distracting us from the increasingly popular American Jobs Act that Senate Republicans voted to kill this week.

Two-to-one. That's the margin by which Americans are united behind the president's ideas to create jobs - and specifically, to the progressive economic policies. While in last night's debate, Republican candidates did their best to groan and moan and whine that increasing taxes on the rich is a bad idea and we should instead abandon our social compacts, they are demonstrably fighting for the votes of the 30 percent. President Obama and his team has only turned up the heat on the Republican members of Congress, forcing them to choose between a political gamble to intentionally undermine the economy in the hopes that it would hurt the president in 2012 and actually doing something about jobs now.

So why again is anyone taking as "serious" any of the same old lame excuses for "ideas" coming out of the G-O-TEA? When will they agree to any sort of jobs bill that will... You know, create jobs?

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