President Obama has a provoking penchant for using seemingly simple, yet reassuringly intelligent-sounding, business and economic terms in a wildly misleading manner (regular readers know I’m convinced that somewhere a fairy dies every time the word “investment” escapes his lips). In this latest instance of beguiling economic messaging at a campaign rally in Florida on Friday, President Obama touted the need for more “bottom-up” economics:
He told his audience Republicans, including presumptive presidential nominee Mitt Romney, “believe that we should go back to the top-down economics of the last decade.”
“They figure that if we simply eliminate regulations and cut taxes by trillions of dollars, then the market will solve all of our problems,” Obama said.
“They argue that if we help corporations and wealthy investors maximize their profits by whatever means necessary — whether through layoffs or outsourcing or union-busting — that it will automatically translate into jobs and prosperity that benefit all of us. …
“We don’t need more top-down economics,” he said. “What we need is some middle class-out economics, some bottom-up economics.”
Hey, President Obama — you know what else helps corporations and wealthy investors? Gigantic bailouts and engendering an over-involved big-government environment conducive to rent-seeking and crony capitalism.
While most people might think of the term “top-down” as referring to the gratuitous offices of federal intrusion, President Obama is using the term for thinly-veiled class-warmongering; as in, enough with allowing the wealthy financial class to ostensibly control all the wealth and call the shots.
But peeling back regulation and lowering taxes is the way to create bottom-up economic growth. How and why is an American entrepreneur going to start a small business if he knows that, even if he manages to get through all the red tape and make a profit, the government will tax the bejeezus out of him? President Obama’s policies discourage growth, and the free market can solve our problems.
President Obama also went on to warn his supporters that Republicans will “spend more money than we have ever seen in the history of the Republic” in endeavoring to thwart his reelection bid. Guess he only has a problem with record-smashing amounts of campaign cash when it isn’t his campaign that benefits.