Of course you think that, Joe — you’ve GOT a job

Y’all know I like Joe Biden, but he does tend to say things without a lot of forethought. Such as this:

(AP)  Trumpeting economic progress to a skeptical nation, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden says the massive government program intended to stimulate and reshape the economy is reaching and exceeding goals.

Nearly 200 days into the effort, Biden says it is more effective “than we had hoped.”

Biden’s upbeat report card, to be delivered Thursday in a speech at the Brookings Institution, comes as economists say the United States is slowly breaking free of the most crippling recession in decades. Yet public angst is also deepening about the cost of government intervention, and millions of people remain out of work.

Of course, that may have had lots of forethought. He might be the designated guy in the administration to go a bit further than POTUS himself can go, and see if it gets saluted. It’s certainly a role to which Joe is suited, and a typical one for the Veep.

But it goes too far for me. I get turned off by either those who are too quick to say the stimulus has failed, or those who overstate its positive effect. Truth is, we don’t know yet. And may never know. Aren’t we still debating whether the New Deal pulled us out of the Great Depression?

Of course, my own situation may cause me to be a bit jaded on the subject. But I think I’m looking at it realistically.

Speaking of reality, here’s a cold dose of it: I ran into Sen. Hugh Leatherman at breakfast this morning. He was in town for a Budget and Control Board meeting, which I think he tends to dread these days because it always means another fruitless argument with the governor. (Here’s something interesting to watch: How much longer will Rich Eckstrom continue to back the gov, with re-election coming up next year?)

Anyway, I said something about my worry that prospective employers are hesitant to hire me, or anyone, until the economy warms back up, and the Senate Finance Chair said he doubted that would happen in S.C. until another year has passed. Or maybe two. He may be right, but I know I can’t wait that long. Nor can a lot of other people.

On that subject, Sen. Leatherman said he was recently talking to an economic development prospect, and the head of the company asked him, Isn’t South Carolina the state where a business prospect wanted to talk to the governor, but the governor ditched the meeting to go see his mistress in Argentina? Is that what doing business in South Carolina is like?

The senator said no, that’s not what South Carolina is like. But he hears that sort of thing a lot, unfortunately.

7 thoughts on “Of course you think that, Joe — you’ve GOT a job

  1. doug_ross

    So it’s all Mark Sanford’s fault.

    Does anyone in power in this state EVER take responsibility for anything? There hasn’t been a dollar spent by the government during Sanford’s tenure in this state that hasn’t had Mr. Leatherman’s or Mr. Harrell’s approval. Not a single dollar.

    The South Carolina economy is the Leatherman/Harrell economy. If you disagree, please tell us which parts of the budget are Mark Sanford programs.

  2. Brad Warthen

    Well, Mark Sanford would certainly tell you it’s Hugh Leatherman’s fault. Or Bobby Harrell’s fault. Or the media’s fault. Or pretty much anybody’s other than his own. So your thesis holds up that far.

    And THAT is my fault, and your fault, and the fault of anyone who helped the guy get elected to start with. I have no similar responsibility for Leatherman or Harrell, because I was never in a position to vote for or against them, and the only legislative races we endorsed in were contested races in the Midlands (and that was pretty overwhelming with our staffing levels in recent years; watch for the paper to do even less in the way of endorsements in the future).

  3. Lee Muller

    Less than 25% of the $1.7 billion in Pelosi Democrat Stimulus Pork has been allocated, and only 14% spent.

    If the economy is already recovering so strongly, it seems we should halt the other spending and not borrow that money, which will only be wasted.

    South Carolina still has chronic problems in economic growth, due to waste, corruption, and high taxes, which can be laid at the doorstep of Hugh Leatherman, John Land, and Bobby Harrell.

  4. RalphHightower

    I wish that South Carolina’s economy would turn around in step with the nation, but I predict that South Carolina’s economy will not turn around until January 12, 2011.

  5. Lee Muller

    South Carolina will always lag because it has a severe emigration of brain power. Our best talent has no reason to stay here.

  6. Randy E

    “Our best talent has no reason to stay here.” – Lee

    Lee’s continued presence as evidence.

    Brad, Krugman supports you on this point. He’s characterizing this as a jobless recovery. I’m torn on the issue because I’m a big fan of both Krugman and Obama yet the former has been a leading left wing critic of the latter.

  7. Lee Muller

    Randy, you claim to be a school teacher who is interested in improving education, but you are unable to engage any serious criticism of the government system. Instead, you habitually resort to silly comments and insults, then run away.

    Randy, why did you leave South Carolina? Because you could?

    I am not a recent high school graduate. I do have reasons to stay here, which a young person would not have. Like any talented, highly-paid person, I could do better in other states.

    This state is unfriendly to entreprenuers. Its colleges court out-of-state students while ignoring the brightest citizens, because the administration wants the demographics which are scored in US News and World rankings.

    Paul Krugman doesn’t have any credentials on domestic economics. He is merely on chanting the Democrat line about a “jobless recovery”. They are talking about a “recovery without housing”, and a “recovery without manufacturing”. They have already overshot every one of the recession indicators they said they were unacceptable. They have wrecked the economy.

    This socialist medicine scheme will be the worst economic poison yet.
    * 8% payroll tax on workers
    * roll back of the Bush tax cuts for the middle class
    * surtax on small business owner incomes
    * steep increases in taxes on investments and savings.

    And it still will not cover a fraction of the wild spending plans. The projected deficits of Obama’s propopals are now $13 TRILLION, more than all the accumulated debt of the previous 215 years.


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