Sunday, April 5, 2009

Exclusive: Important Steps to Take If Your Goal Is To Destroy the American Economy

from Family Security
J. Harinas

* Since investors and the market in general hate uncertainty, have a vast array of conflicting ad hoc policy decisions so as to create uncertainty everywhere.

* Transfer money from those who create sustainable jobs to those who create unsustainable jobs, i.e. the government.

* Promise to invest money in things that will enhance the country's infrastructure, such as roads and internet access, but then practice bait and switch on a breathtaking scale, so the effort is swamped with pork for pet democrat projects.

* A sufficiently generous larding of pork can help ensure the destruction of bi-partisanship, so squandering the initial good will is definitely a very good move. After all, it's hard to get things done when you've alienated people whose help you need.

* Undermine the ability of those who create jobs by increasing their taxes so there's less money available for investment.

* While you're at it, offer to spread the income around by raising taxes, in the process, making it clear to those who work hard, invest in their educations, take risks, save, and delay gratification that they will see their money go to those who do not do these things.

* Encourage class warfare. Divide the populace and destroy cooperation, thus encouraging backlash and creating paralyzing polarization. That's a genuinely brilliant move. Much to be encouraged and supported.

* Talk up protectionism, since the beggar thy neighbor approach has such a long and vigorous history of encouraging depression. Another brilliant, brilliant move.

* Scare people with talk of economic catastrophe. You can backpedal later, but the initial good work of helping people lose confidence should have a lasting impact. Hard to improve on that one.

* Tackle an array of divisive, expensive programs such as cap and trade and healthcare reform, so the best and brightest in your administration aren't focused on dealing with the existential threat, economic meltdown, which the Washington Post compares in seriousness to Pearl Harbor. (Anything you can do to divide and polarize the country is a stroke of genius.)

* Insult the Chinese by publicly accusing them of currency manipulation. It may be true that they are doing this, but this translates in Chinese (as I'm told by my Chinese boyfriend) as accusing them of lying, and in a country that puts great store on face, doing this publicly on a world stage instead of hashing it out privately, angers them enough so that they're looking for ways to retaliate, and given the number of economic cards they hold, this is not a good position for America to be in. But darn, angering your biggest creditor is simply beyond brilliant if you want to damage the economy.

* Print money on a scale that will insure inflation in the future. Print it on a scale that will make people not want to hold U.S. debt
without staggering interest on that debt, if they're willing to hold U.S. government debt at all.

* Burden future generations with unprecedented amounts of debt.

* Instead of allowing hopeless institutions to go bankrupt, pour vast amounts of money into them, prolonging the pain and running up the cost while only delaying the inevitable.

* Tax and spend and borrow like never before and sign a bill full of 9,000 earmarks while declaring publicly you will not stand for either reckless spending or earmarks. Let the people see the clips of the President saying one thing and doing quite another, and cause the people to lose all respect for the President. This undermines his moral authority. This isn't a big deal, but it helps even if only a little, so by all means do it.

I have a feeling I'm leaving out some important additional steps that could help destroy the American economy, but I think the above would give us a good running start for achieving this. I think congratulations are due all around, assuming that this is the goal.

Bravo! Contributing Editor J. Harinas is a New York libertarian.
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