I almost fell over when I saw this editorial by economist Dr. Peter Morici. The following paragraphs say it all:
Jobs creation remains weak, because temporary tax cuts, stimulus spending, large federal deficits, expensive and ineffective business regulations, and increased health care mandates and costs do not address structural problems holding back dynamic growth and jobs creation-the huge trade deficit and dysfunctional energy policies.
… Simply, dollars sent abroad to purchase oil and consumer goods from China, that do not return to purchase U.S. exports, are lost purchasing power. Consequently, the U.S. economy is expanding at less than 1 percent a year instead of the 5 percent pace that is possible after emerging from a deep recession and with such high unemployment.
Without prompt efforts to produce more domestic oil, redress the trade imbalance with China, relax burdensome business regulations, and curb health care mandates and costs, the U.S. economy cannot grow and create enough jobs.
Perhaps this is why the head of the WTO has been wringing his hands over a possible return of “protectionism.” (See my previous post.) Is it possible that Morici is expressing in public something that American economists have been, in private, been grousing about for some time now? Is it possible that change is in the wind? I doubt it, but you can’t blame me for grasping at reasons for optimism when there are so few to be seen.