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September 06, 2011

Leaked Details of Obama's Great Big Jobs To-Do List Indicates It's A Small-Bore Rewrite of Job To-Don'ts

My guess is that these leaked details are deliberately inaccurate, and this list of things already tried (and failed) is intended to lower expectations. I imagine he's not releasing at least a couple of bigger ideas -- themselves actually small, but if he tricks people into thinking he's got absolutely nothing, those ideas look bigger due to low expectations.

If this is actually his plan, this speech will wind up costing him.

According to people familiar with the White House deliberations, two of the biggest measures in the president's proposals for 2012 are expected to be a one-year extension of a payroll tax cut for workers and an extension of expiring jobless benefits. Together those two would total about $170 billion.

.,.

The White House is also considering a tax credit for businesses that hire the unemployed. That could cost about $30 billion. Obama has also called for public works projects, such as school construction. Advocates of that plan have called for spending of $50 billion, but the White House proposal is expected to be smaller.

Obama also is expected to continue for one year a tax break for businesses that allows them to deduct the full value of new equipment. The president and Congress negotiated that provision into law for 2011 last December.

All of these points, except the small-beer incentive to hire the unemployed, are policies already in effect, which he seeks to continue.

It seems obvious that you can't change the current circumstances by only continuing the current policies. I don't even mean this in any kind of ideological way; in a meta way, there is no plausible way one can argue that doing essentially the same things is likely to produce new and different results. That seems elementary.

So what's his real plan? Either he's holding back a lot, or maybe he's just daring the Republicans to refuse some part of this plan in order to claim that this or that $50 billion cancelled expenditure is the reason we're now in a second recession.

Thanks to Slublog.

There will be no formal response by the GOP to Obama's address.

“Republicans are, and have been, entirely focused on job creation," Boehner spokesman Michael Steel said. "Every Member of Congress, and – more importantly - the American people, will provide a reaction to the president’s address. We trust in the good judgment of the American people, and the president’s proposals will rise or fall on their own merits."

I don't get the math on that. Always respond, even if you're not attacking; always take advantage of free media to at least say "We've got our own plan for jobs creation."

Who knows; maybe this was the agreement made behind-the-scenes for Obama to back off his insistence on speaking during the Republican debate.


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posted by Ace at 08:18 PM

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