George Will and Michael Barone this weekend both theorized that the federal government’s spending, inconstancy and incompetence have produced what could be a 1930s’ style “capital strike,” where business will not invest because of uncertainty. Good historical comparison. Who gets credit?
Jake Tapper and George Will from ABC’s “This Week” roundtable discussion, Sunday.
TAPPER: Let’s turn to the economy as long as Liz has brought it up. The May jobs number report came out showing 431,000 jobs were created. Only 41,000 of them were in the private sector. The unemployment rate is 9.7 percent, and 46 percent of the unemployed have been jobless for 27 weeks or more. George, this is not good news.
WILL: It’s terrible news. In May, the private sector essentially stopped producing jobs. It was one-fifth the job creation of April. The 41,000 created in the private sector is less than half as many jobs that have to be created in order to keep up with the natural growth of the labor force.
Now the question is why is this happening? One answer might be that we’re seeing now the prospect of a jobless recovery because of what happened with the late New Deal when business threw up its hands and said there’s too much uncertainty.
WILL: The Bush tax cuts are going to expire. Interest rates have to go up sooner or later. The House, just before going on recess, passed a so-called jobs bill with $80 billion more dollars of taxes in it. There may be climate change regulation. No one knows quite how Obama Care is going to effect the private sector. In pandemic uncertainty, capital goes on strike.
Michael Barone, Examiner, June 6, “Oil slick, joblessness may stymie Dems’ rebound“: