Obama to Greece: You know, you guys should really try growing your economy

posted at 3:21 pm on August 14, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

Well, this is rich. This is old news by now, but I missed it while I was off on vacation last week and it’s a pretty slow day out there — so why not take a moment to once again observe the hubris of a president who, unable to spur his own domestic economy into robust growth-mode with repeatedly failed Keynesian policies, feels free to advise the same to a country with more than a 27 percent unemployment rate? Via WaPo:

President Obama, in a meeting with Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras on Thursday, expressed support for Greece’s efforts to restructure its economy and stressed the need for the country to start focusing on jobs and growth. …

The two leaders stressed the need for Greece to go beyond the tough austerity program that it adopted as a condition for a $315 billion bailout from the International Monetary Fund and the European Union.

“In dealing with the challenges that Greece faces, we cannot simply look to austerity as a strategy,” Obama said. “It’s important that we have a plan for fiscal consolidation to manage the debt, but it’s also important that growth and jobs are a focus.”

Countries that are growing and where employment is high “have an easier time reducing their debt burdens than countries where people are feeling hopeless,” the president said.

Hey, that’s perfectly true — countries with more gainfully employed, productive, and private-sector workers reliably enjoy a higher level of revenue than flailing and depressed economies, and this is what Greece’s economic picture looks like right about now:

Greece’s economy contracted 4.6 percent in the second quarter compared with a year earlier. While that is slightly less than in the previous quarter, it still leaves the country in an economic hole that some have termed a depression. The official forecast is that growth will only return in 2014, and it will take years before the economy reaches pre-crisis levels.

Greece triggered Europe’s debt crisis in October, 2009 when it admitted it had underreported its budget deficit for years. It was the first of the continent’s economies to get an international bailout. The policy of spending cuts and tax increases demanded by creditors to cure public finances has reduced the deficit but savaged the economy and society.

The economy has shrunk by roughly 24 percent since 2008, business bankruptcies have skyrocketed and unemployment is at a record 27.6 percent — and 64.9 percent for people under 25. The statistics bear some resemblance to those during the Great Depression in the United States, when gross domestic product fell 27 percent in 1929-1933 and unemployment climbed to over 20 percent.

Except that, there’s the rub: European and liberal economists seems awfully quick to blame the ‘spending cuts and tax increases demanded by creditors’ as the economy’s vanquishers and insist that “austerity is dead!,” instead of blaming — you know — the years and years of wildly unsustainable public spending policies and extravagant promises that landed Greece and others in this situation in the first place. Yes, any significant amount of economic-structural reorganization is going to mean real material hardship in the short-term, but advising more government spending to ‘create jobs’ when it’s the government’s bad habit of insanely exorbitant spending that started it all? That sounds like a punchline to some sort of tragic joke.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

O/T Holy Crap! Drudge has “Vice President Resigns”.

Oh, wait, that’s the Egypt VP. Never mind.

The Rogue Tomato on August 14, 2013 at 3:28 PM

Obama to Greece: You know, you guys should really try growing your economy

HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA
HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA

RickB on August 14, 2013 at 3:30 PM

Right back at ya, buddy.

- Greece

Kafir on August 14, 2013 at 3:31 PM

Because Oblahblah said he is going to double our exports and stuff!!!

trs on August 14, 2013 at 3:31 PM

Old: Be wary of Greeks bearing gifts

New: Be wary of Kenyans bearing bad advice to Greeks

Bitter Clinger on August 14, 2013 at 3:32 PM

Words fail me. He really does fit the clinical definition of a narcissist.

Oh and please STOP WITH THE RANDOM AUTO PLAY stuff.

Johnnyreb on August 14, 2013 at 3:32 PM

“Obama to Greece: You know, you guys should really try growing your economy.”

Once again, OBOZO make a real RODEO CLOWN seem like an amateur.

TeaPartyNation on August 14, 2013 at 3:33 PM

Obama to Greek PM: “Mr. Samaras, you need to “pivot” to the economy and focus like a “laser” on jobs!”

Deano1952 on August 14, 2013 at 3:33 PM

Obama: I’m a Constitutional Law Perfessor, but that economy stuff is all Greek to me.

Steve Z on August 14, 2013 at 3:35 PM

If you’re looking for advice on how to grow your economy, the last person you want to hear from is the economic Grim Reaper.

antipc on August 14, 2013 at 3:35 PM

Obama should ship a few million illegal aliens to Greece.

After all, he and his fellow libs keep telling us what a tremendous boon it will be to our economy to legalize tens of millions of poor, unskilled, uneducated foreigners with limited ability to speak our language.

Just think what a few million of the same could do for Greece’s economy!

AZCoyote on August 14, 2013 at 3:36 PM

Maybe we can invite the unemployed Greek youth to immigrate to the US and help grow our economy like Obama said giving amnesty and importing more Latin Americans would do.

Charlemagne on August 14, 2013 at 3:38 PM

Master of the bleeding obvious.

NeighborhoodCatLady on August 14, 2013 at 3:40 PM

Hussein means “Adam Smith” in Arabic.

Akzed on August 14, 2013 at 3:42 PM

Greece would love to, but they can’t match efficiency with Germany, and thanks to a unified currency they can’t compete by devaluing. The only way they can win is to become better Germans than the Germans. It’s possible, but not likely.

DFCtomm on August 14, 2013 at 3:42 PM

To be fair, the US economy is doing so well that the First Prop Dog has its own military transportation unit.

mudskipper on August 14, 2013 at 3:43 PM

This is why he won’t meet with Putin.

If he tried any of that lecturing crapola with Vlad, he would be thrown down and anally raped before even the rodeo clown could save him.

Adjoran on August 14, 2013 at 3:50 PM

Ed, this looks alot like an obamaism of the day.
Please bring it back. Pretty Please. I loved em.

scookam on August 14, 2013 at 3:53 PM

“Grow your economy. But don’t get any crazy ideas like you built that. Somebody else… made that happen.”

Akzed on August 14, 2013 at 3:58 PM

So, wait, Obama doesn’t believe in higher taxes?

For the most part, that’s what ‘austerity’ means in Europe.

Resist We Much on August 14, 2013 at 4:01 PM

So is it true the Greek guy responded by saying, “hey, you guys should really try the free market to cut medical insurance costs!”?

I heard that.

MTF on August 14, 2013 at 4:11 PM

“Obama to Greece: You know, you guys should really try growing your economy”….Keddle to Pot:You’re black.

timberline on August 14, 2013 at 4:16 PM

Obama to Greece: You know, you guys should really try growing your economy

Hopefully followed by “And then tell me how to do it in the US.”

krome on August 14, 2013 at 4:21 PM

What a pathetic fool!

rjoco1 on August 14, 2013 at 4:23 PM

Greece would love to, but they can’t match efficiency with Germany, and thanks to a unified currency they can’t compete by devaluing. The only way they can win is to become better Germans than the Germans. It’s possible, but not likely.

DFCtomm on August 14, 2013 at 3:42 PM

The point is that you can’t cut government spending and achieve short-term economic growth. Germany didn’t enact deep spending cuts.

Secondly, the potential of the US economy is nowhere close to where some dream it should be:

http://www.businessinsider.com/us-potential-gdp-growth-lowest-since-ww2-2013-8

bayam on August 14, 2013 at 4:30 PM

What would Obama know about growng an economy?

Steven Den Beste on August 14, 2013 at 4:33 PM

If Greece could improve their profit to earnings ratio they could get going again.

jukin3 on August 14, 2013 at 4:43 PM

Obama to Greece: You know, you guys should really try growing your economy

Translation: “Let me be clear. You people are effin’ up your country all wrong….”

viking01 on August 14, 2013 at 4:44 PM

The point is that you can’t cut government spending and achieve short-term economic growth. Germany didn’t enact deep spending cuts.

Secondly, the potential of the US economy is nowhere close to where some dream it should be:

http://www.businessinsider.com/us-potential-gdp-growth-lowest-since-ww2-2013-8

bayam on August 14, 2013 at 4:30 PM

FYI- no one takes Business Insider seriously.

Chuck Schick on August 14, 2013 at 4:48 PM

Obama to Greece: You know, you guys should really try growing your economy.

Greece to Obama: βλακας!

freedomfirst on August 14, 2013 at 4:49 PM

So, wait, Obama doesn’t believe in higher taxes?

For the most part, that’s what ‘austerity’ means in Europe.

Resist We Much on August 14, 2013 at 4:01 PM

Yep, except for Estonia.

22044 on August 14, 2013 at 4:51 PM

What a malaka.

HumpBot Salvation on August 14, 2013 at 4:56 PM

Samaras looks like he showing Obama empty pockets in that caption pic. If only…

txhsmom on August 14, 2013 at 4:59 PM

http://www.businessinsider.com/us-potential-gdp-growth-lowest-since-ww2-2013-8

bayam on August 14, 2013 at 4:30 PM

FYI- no one takes Business Insider seriously.

Chuck Schick on August 14, 2013 at 4:48 PM

The article was also published in WSJ but it’s behind a paywall. It’s the same story reported in both WSJ and by other paid sources.

bayam on August 14, 2013 at 5:02 PM

Greece’s economy contracted 4.6 percent in the second quarter compared with a year earlier. While that is slightly less than in the previous quarter, it still leaves the country in an economic hole that some have termed a depression. The official forecast is that growth will only return in 2014, and it will take years before the economy reaches pre-crisis levels.

Two consecutive quarters of GDP contraction by about 10% total. That is the literal definition of a depression.

The economy has shrunk by roughly 24 percent since 2008, business bankruptcies have skyrocketed and unemployment is at a record 27.6 percent — and 64.9 percent for people under 25. The statistics bear some resemblance to those during the Great Depression in the United States, when gross domestic product fell 27 percent in 1929-1933 and unemployment climbed to over 20 percent.

How in the world is that not a depression? LOL!

Theophile on August 14, 2013 at 5:17 PM

The article was also published in WSJ but it’s behind a paywall. It’s the same story reported in both WSJ and by other paid sources.

bayam on August 14, 2013 at 5:02 PM

Let me know when you have something then.

Chuck Schick on August 14, 2013 at 5:44 PM

Mangas

Bubba Redneck on August 14, 2013 at 5:52 PM

“Just do what we’re doing……allow a tremendous number of immigrants into your country without so much as a passing glance, put them on welfare and all the other benefits they deserve, and voila`….Growth!”

BobMbx on August 14, 2013 at 6:09 PM

The official forecast is that growth will only return in 2014

Will it come on a magic carpet?

burt on August 14, 2013 at 6:10 PM

The article was also published in WSJ but it’s behind a paywall. It’s the same story reported in both WSJ and by other paid sources.

bayam on August 14, 2013 at 5:02 PM

Let me know when you have something then.

Chuck Schick on August 14, 2013 at 5:44 PM

Watch out, you’re opening the outhouse door for bayam to drop us a quote from Krugman…

Del Dolemonte on August 14, 2013 at 6:58 PM

LOL this is a joke! Obama hasn’t grown anything but the deficit!

jeffn21 on August 15, 2013 at 11:59 AM