Peter Schiff - Obama’s Pretzel Logic
As this fall’s presidential election takes shape as a contest between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, the rhetoric out of both camps is becoming sharper and more ideological. Looking to exploit Governor Romney’s increasingly close association with Wisconsin representative Paul Ryan (who has been mentioned as a potential vice presidential nominee), the President dedicated a lengthy address earlier this week to specifically heap scorn on Ryan’s budget plan (Ryan is the chairman of the House Budget Committee). The attack lines used by the President not only reveal a preview of the fall campaign but also offer a glimpse of Obama’s skewed views of the social and economic history of the United States.
The President laid bare his beliefs that America’s source of economic strength has been her historical embrace of collective action, wealth redistribution, and government policies that have protected workers from the ravages of the wealthy. To reiterate, he was talking about the United States, not Soviet Russia. He asserted that prosperity “grows outward from the middle class” and that it “never trickles down from the success of the wealthy.” Accordingly, he concludes that our recent struggles stem from the Republican-led abandonment of these successful policies.
In reaching these conclusions Obama relies on classic “wet sidewalks cause rain” reasoning, and assumes that an effect can be the father of the cause. But as we debate how to move the American economy out of the rut in which it is trapped, it’s important to know where to put the cart and where the horse.