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Friday, February 08, 2013

Keeping it simple, stupid

Why does it make sense to suggest that the U.S. economy’s biggest customer -- making more combined purchases of mostly American goods and services than the 20 largest corporations combined -- more purchases of mostly American goods and services, that is, from Exxon-Mobil, Wal-Mart, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, General Motors, General Electric, Berkshire-Hathaway, Fannie Mae, Ford, Hewlett-Packard, AT&T, Valero Energy, Bank of America, McKesson, Verizon, J.P. Morgan-Chase, Apple, CVS, IBM and Citigroup COMBINED -- should reduce its purchases -- that is, “cut spending” -- in order to improve an economy that already is suffering from high unemployment? Would Paul Ryan and the Republicans, not to speak of Democrats who want to pretend they are kind of like Republicans and media types like the Washington Post who tend to be mesmerized by whatever billionaires say, suggest the economy would improve if all those Top 20 companies "cut spending" all at once?

Or could it possibly be the better view that the best thing we could do now to make the economy stronger, put people back to work and reduce the long-term deficit because they are paying taxes again and not collecting unemployment compensation is for that gigantic customer to increase its purchases of goods and services on things that will make the country better, stronger and more efficient?

Duh, I don’t know. Now that you put it that way. . . . (I never did quite know what Obama and experts like Paul Krugman mean by "stimulus," and I know some people say stimulus is bad.)



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