Sunday, September 5, 2010

Pound-foolish complaint

Enough with the false frugality.
This Labor Day weekend ends a summer that was long, hot,* and dismal. Economic news? Bad to worse. So too analyses of what’s to come.
Having predicted downturn long before many in the mainstream media, this ’Grrl is hardly a Pollyanna on fiscal policy. Nonetheless, I can’t wait for a theme running through much commentary to run its course.
The theme cropped up again a few days ago, in Maureen Dowd’s kvetch about a White House makeover. Key quote among many swipes:

The recession redo, paid for by the nonprofit White House Historical Association, was the latest tone-deaf move by a White House that was supposed to excel at connection and communication. Message: I care, but not enough to stop the fancy vacations and posh renovations.
As we've posted in another context, concern about poor Presidential communication is well founded.
Concern about spending, not so much.
As any student of ECON 101 well knows, underdemand means oversupply. Not a good thing. If no one buys, sellers lose out. Stores close and employees are out of work.
Recovery requires that persons who can – CEOs, persons who saved well during the last bubble, and yes, the 1st Family – should spend. New carpets and remade couches. R&R at the Vineyard, and the Gulf coast. Spain, even.
Stirring of the economic pot is what's in order – not a populist tune that may sound good but is, in the end, unsound.

* So it’s reported, from reaches of the United States outside the zone of cold coastal fog that cloaked the San Francisco Bay Area lo! these many months.

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