George W. Bush to publish book on economic growth

The Weekly Joke Revue is coming later today, but this news is just too precious to wait: George W. Bush is planning a book “outlining strategies for economic growth.” NYT:

Two months from now, he plans to publish a book outlining strategies for economic growth.

Republicans talking about strategies for economic growth is like Mitt Romney talking about strategies for pet transportation, or Scott Brown talking about how to keep student loan rates low.

The GOP may offer a lot to voters who want employers to decide whether women can get reproductive health care, and whether interest rates on student loans should suddenly double to benefit banks, but after crashing the economy in 2008 and making tax cuts for billionaires their #1 subsequent legislative priority the party has no credibility at all on economic matters.


29 Comments . Leave a comment below.
  1. April fools?

    No, I suppose not.

    Start costly war of choice based on false ‘intelligence’

    Create a giant hole in the budget for years to come

    Attack science and accelerate the transformation of the GOP into a “know nothing party” where reality does not matter

    What more could one want for an economic strategy?

    Or to put it more bluntly: you already had 8 years to s&%$# the country, so just do something productive with your time like cutting brush or some other bit of manly performance art you can dream up.

    • Could not agree more about Iraq being a mistake, too bad John Kerry and Hillary Clinton supported it. I wished Dean was the nominee in 04, would have been a real choice on foreign policy.

      Anyway, have not the last few decades been fueled by bubbles. 80′s, we had the savings and loan crisis, 90′s was the dot-com bubble that boke, and W had the real estate bubble that crashed. Problem for Obama is the bubble he has is government spending. Me thinks we are out of bubbles.

      • Ah,... no.

        If there is a spending bubble, it’s not his:

        Federal spending is lower now than it was when President Obama took office. I’ll pause to let you absorb the news.

        Here’s another interesting fact. Taxes today are lower than they were on inauguration day 2009. …

        One last nugget. The deficit this year is going to be lower than what it was on the day President Obama took office. …

        I’d further note that the lion’s share of the ‘job hemmoraging’ are cuts to public sector jobs. In other words, with regard to jobs, this is the recovery the conservatives asked for.

        For a while temporary census-related jobs masked the underlying trend, but we’ve been steadily shedding government work. Maybe you think that’s a good thing. Certainly most of President Obama’s critics from the right claim to believe it’s a good thing.

        • I got my microscope out to notice the diff between the red and blue. I thought we were running a trillion dollar debt this year, but I could be wrong.

          Even the Ryan budget adds to the deficit. It is hopeless no matter who is in office. 64 trillion in obligations, very little mfg base, it is not if we will become the new Greece, is is if we will become like Lybia, when it all comes crashing down. Keep the second amendment evreryone (lol)

        • What are you, on crack?

          Mr. Lynne, Think Progress’s number are cherry picking data to reflect “progress” on the economy. But it’s all spin and BS. Let me put it in terms you might understand:

          Last year I made $82,500 but I spent $124,000. Very, very bad. This year, I’m making $79,000 and I’m spending $117,000. That’s still very, very bad.

          Except to progressives like you and Think Progress.

          This is not the recovery any sane let alone conservative person wants so don’t put word in my mouth, please.

          • If you really think aggregate...

            …spending shouldn’t be thought of in terms of aggregate production, I guess you have a point. Personally, were I a conservative, I’d probably not advise dropping a relative measure to GDP. We already know how horrible aggregate economic numbers look relative to GDP when comparing Democratic vs GOP administrations. Imagine how much more stark the comparison would be once you drop GDP.

            Conservatives railed and railed about wanting to cut public sector employment on the theory that ‘bloat’ in public sector employment was a drag on private sector employment. I wish your reality where they didn’t was true. Unfortunately Obama appears to have listened.

          • Yes!

            Austerity is the answer….let’s see if we can hit Spain’s 25% level of unemployment!

            sabutai   @   Fri 18 May 7:40 PM
            • No!

              Austerity is how the Greeks are addressing the cause of that high unemployment. Spending and borrowing are what caused the financial meltdown in Greece and the resulting high unemployment. Cheap Euros and government spending, from the BBC;
              “After it adopted the single currency, public spending soared. public sector wages, for example, rose 50% between 1999 and 2007 – far faster than in other Euro-zone countries”.

              • Analogy

                So if I back up my car and run over someone, that doesn’t mean that the solution is to drive forward again. (h/t PK)

                So yes, the Greeks got themselves in the current mess by horrendously bad governance. Austerity, however, “addresses the cause of high unemployment” by causing more high unemployment. The recent paper by DeLong & Summers even indicates that long term austerity in recessions like this one causes much more harm than good — both near term harm (unemployment = suffering) and long-term damage to the economy in the form of loss of productive capacity.

            • Wait a second here

              Spain was ruled by the socialist party from 2003 until the conservatives won last November!!!!!! Using your argument, Obama cannot use ” I inherited a bad economy”. Obama needs two terms to fix the economy, the conservatives in Spain need to do it in two months. Give me a break, will ya?

              • In fact

                By the measures that conservatives crow about, e.g., low national debt, Spain was doing exceedingly well before the meltdown. Its debt was lower than Germany’s, for example.

                • Hi

                  They have always had high unemployment. I just think they are beyond hope.

                  • European unemployment rates

                    tend to run higher than the U.S. rate. That might be because they measure different things or it might represent structural differences.

                    In any case, to make a Europe to Europe comparison, the unemployment rate in Spain was lower than in Germany 2004-2006 before the housing bubble burst.

          • From 2007 to the end of Bush's term

            Tax revenues fell from 19% of GDP to 15% of GDP
            Deficit spending increased from 20% of GDP to 24% of GDP

            If you think these numbers are better than the chart aboe then you need to pass the crack pipe.

          • Epistemic closure claims another conservative.


        • More progressive BS and spin

          Do progressives understand the difference between tax RATES and tax RECEIPTS? Apparently not. Think Progress touts a reduction in receipts as “lower” taxes implying lower rates and recessionary effects.

          I’d feel better if they were trying to spin me, but I actually think progressives believe lower tax receipts are better. Like a lower salary is better.

          • Looking at only rates...

            … would actually be more misleading than looking at the aggregate inputs vs. outputs. Corporations are taxed at a given rate, after all – and if you relied on that to get a feel for what they actually paid you’d be misled.

    • Bush sold his "ranch"

      When he stopped being President, Bush sold the place in Crawford. If he wants to do some manly brush-cutting now, he probably has to go to somebody else’s spread.

      Here’s a missed opportunity – if he’d been prosecuted for his war crimes, he might be cutting brush along some highway today.

      • funny

        except for the fact that he didn’t sell the ranch. reality based.

        • Urban legend

          Good catch.

          It turns out that the Bushes decided to make their permanent residence in Dallas, but decided to continue to visit Crawford weekends and holidays. After the Dallas purchase, there was a lot of talk on the left blogosphere that Bush would sell his ranch, that it was just for show, that it had been purchased in 1999 anyway as a prop, etc. I was under the impression, too, that the Bushes had sold the ranch, too.

          However, they still own it.

    • Historian is a nickname, not a job description, right?

      Who’s creating the giant hole there? Obama has added, what. $6, $7 trillion to the deficit in 3 years? Versus $1.5 billion for Bush over 8?

      Wait. Wait! Let’s raise taxes to close the budget gap!

  2. Its nice to know

    he can’t go to Germany

    • Moreover, ’tis a joy forever to remember that George XLIII

      holds a Master of Business Administration (’75) degree from the H*rv*rd Victory School, the former Allston (Massachusetts) Academy of Chirurgy and Barber Science. [*]

      Happy days.

      [*] Willard Mitt XLV will be the second fruit of formal instruction in the mysteries of Big Management to have scrambled to the top of the greasy pole. in addition to being rather less of an embarrassment to his sophists, Gov. Romney is a twofer, J. D. ’75 as well as M.B.A. ’75.

      Maybe a threefer: the man has tonsorial expertise as well, after all, though this appears to be self-taught and entirely unconnected with the Greatest University in the County.

  3. Alas

    Neither do Democrats.

    Which puts us in something of a pickle, no?

  4. Manufactured Reality continues to triumph

    As is usually the case the thread illustrates the continued devotion of the right to manufactured reality.

    If it’s the economy we’re talking about the Bush tax cuts must be defended forever even if they created a giant hole in the federal budget for years to come, and this was entirely self-inflicted:

    And if the subject were the environment we’d see nothing but claims that global warming is not occurring or claims that it is not the result of human action, though in that case the deniers would be more forthcoming than Senator Brown who bravely keeps his mouth shut and his staff muzzled.

  5. A couple other things about the Bush Administration and economic policy

    1. Tax cuts were a cure for all seasons and advocated for all reasons.

    2. The Bush Administration inherited a recession caused by the dot com bubble bursting. They kept claiming that their magic tax cuts would produce massively more jobs than they did. It became an ongoing game to compare Bush’s claims against data.

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