American voters are being urged to look past personality and soberly evaluate the economic policies put forward by the 2020 Democrat presidential candidates ahead of next years high-stakes election.
Stanford Professor Michael Boskin argued in an op-ed earlier this year that as the election gets closer, people should look beyond slogans and catchphrases to avoid buyers remorse. The one-time adviser to Ronald Reagan said its high time voters put everyone seeking to occupy the White House through a “rigorous analysis” on their “sharply divergent economic policies.”
“The stakes are high and the outcome will reverberate across the world in a number of spheres, not least the economy,” Boskin wrote in an op-ed for the British newspaper The Guardian.
President Donald Trump, meanwhile, said of next years election that “at stake in this fight is the survival of American democracy itself.” He has cast the election as a battle between freedom and tradition on the one hand, and tyranny and socialism on the other.
“Here, in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country. … Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country,” he said during the State of the Union address. Later, during an address at the United Nations, Trump called socialism a “destroyer of societies.”
“One of the most serious challenges our countries face is the specter of socialism,” Trump said. “Its the wrecker of nations and the destroyer of societies.”
The president believes his fight is against a risky socialist experiment that would throw his roaring Trumponomics-fueled economy into a tailspin. More fundamentally, he views 2020 as not just a fight for economic survival, but for the soul of the nation.
His chief political rival, former Vice President Joe Biden, has also resorted to tough rhetoric. Biden has claimed that reelecting Trump “will fundamentally change the character of this country for generations.”
“We are in the battle for the soul of this nation,” Biden said, announcing his bid in April. “If we give Donald Trump eight years in the White House he will forever and fundamentally alter the character of this nation. Who we are. And I cannot stand by and watch that happen.”
Green New Deal as Economic Stimulus
Economically, a successful Democratic challenge to Trump would most likely see a figure in the Oval Office who backs some form of the expensive and expansive Green New Deal (GND). It is both the Democrats signature vision for a zero-emissions future and their concept for fueling economic growth and providing jobs.
Most of the 2020 Democrat candidates have expressed support for the GND, and some, like Biden and his “Clean Energy Revolution,” have built their economic platforms on its foundation.
Socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) co-sponsored the GND when it was introduced as a resolution in Congress by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.). Sanders has since unveiled his own $16 trillion version of the GND, claiming that not only would it “create 20 million jobs needed to solve the climate crisis” but that it would somehow even pay for itself.
“The benefits are enormous,” Sanders claims on his campaign website. “By taking bold and decisive action, we will save $2.9 trillion over 10 years, $21 trillion over 30 years, and $70.4 trillion over 80 years.”
“But it has another implication, one of special importance to socialists,” wrote Megan Day of the far-left Jacobin Magazine, which bills itself as “a leading voice of the American left, offering socialist perspectives on politics, economics, and culture.” Day said the GNDs jobs guarantee component “is one of the most important and exciting offerings of the Green New Deal,” adding that if successfully implemented, it would be “a chance to massively increase the power of working people. They can use that power to wrest more control from the capitalist class.”
Boskin additionally cautioned that some Democrats are flirting with “even more radical plans” that are inspired by the GND but go far beyond.
“A Democratic president could also be expected to tighten financial regulation, and potentially even introduce radical changes to corporate law,” he wrote. An example is Sen. Elizabeth Warrens (D-Mass.) plan to “democratize the workplace” by letting employees appoint corporate board members.
“It also means transforming large American companies by letting their workers elect at least 40 percent of the companys board members to give them a powerful voice in decisions about wages and outsourcing,” Warren said on her campaign website.
Warren, who said shes “proud to be an original supporter of the Green New Deal,” initially proposed her version as a “historic $2 trillion investment in researching, developing, and manufacturing clean energy technology here in America.” She later made it an even $3 trillion.
“Today, Im announcing Ill commit an additional $1 trillion over 10 years—fully paid for by reversing Trumps tax cuts for the wealthiest individuals and giant corporations—to match Governor Inslees commitment, and to subsidize the economic transition to clean and renewable electricity, zero emission vehicles, and green products for commercial and residential buildings.”
Warrens signature Ultra-Millionaire Tax would take in 2 cents on every dollar of assets above $50 million and 3 percent on fortunes worth $1 billion and more.
A simulation on her campaign website showed that a hypothetical “heir with a net worth of $20 billion” would pay a “2 percent tax on the $950 million between $50 million and $1 billion, and a 3 percent tax on the remaining $19 billion, for a total annual liability of $589 million.”
Forbes argued it will face a Supreme Court challenge over its alleged status as an unconstitutional “direct tax.”
“Im dying to know whether her headlining tax proposal—the unconventional wealth tax that she claims would generate $2.75 trillion dollars over 10 years from the richest 75,000 families in America—would violate the U.S. Constitution,” wrote Tony Nitti, Senior Contributor for Forbes and a licensed CPA, adding, “the entire tax may violate Article 1, Section 9, Clause 4.”
Competing Visions of Economic Policy
Spurning “traditional” fossil fuels and spurring growth in “progressive” carbon-free sources of energy, the GND has been conceived as a multi-aim scheme that includes job guarantees, affordable housing, and universal health care. On the other side of the equation, the massive spending it would entail is seen as the engine of a massive economic stimulus push, but with the government, rather than the free market, behind the wheel.
British economist Ann Pettifor, author of “The Case for the Green New Deal” and adviser to Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, admitted that the bold aims of the GND are impossible under free-market conditions. In her book, she argues people should “get real” and recognize that bankers will never “finance a massive climate stabilization project on terms that are acceptable and sustainable.” Instead, she prescribes increasing state control of the economy and restricting peoples ability to move their capital freely.
According to Pettifors own conclusions, in order to work as its supposed to, the GND—and by logical extension the plans it has inspired—requires ringfencing capital so it doesnt flee whatever “socialistRead More – Source