Saturday, January 12, 2008

Romney and the Economy

Ok, I've had it with Mitt Romney. Here's the scoop. Romney and McCain have been campaigning the past 2 days in Michigan for the upcoming primary. As Michigan has a large amount of auto-workers, jobs/outsourcing is obviously a key issue in the state.

Romney said the new auto standards that congress recently passed (would require auto manufacturers to increase fuel economy to a mean of 35 mpg by the year 2020 would "help the foreign manufacturers and hurt us." Romney also criticized McCain for asserting that state jobs lost overseas are "not coming back," calling it defeatist.

McCain, instead, said he would be "ashamed and embarrassed" if he were to claim that old jobs were coming back. Instead, McCain proposes improved retraining programs for those who lost their jobs.

I cannot believe the economic protectionist garbage that is coming out of Romney's mouth. He is pandering again!! That statement also shows that he is not committed to alleviating our dependence on foreign fuel and would rather make a few thousand voters in Michigan happy rather than worry about combating global warming and protecting the enviroment. Messing with free markets and momentum are not good things. You see, the best thing that could happen to the US and the world if for oil prices to skyrocket. That is the only thing that will real "fuel" an impetus to becoming a greener country and utilize more clean and renewable sources of energy. Competition for profits is the only thing that will inspire the movement of alternative energy. If gas prices are very high, then consumers want to buy more fuel-efficient vehicles, which motivates car manufacturers to create more efficient vehicles. If we artificially tamper with these free market forces, then will never break out from the shackles from our dependence on foreign fuel from terrorist-sponsoring countries.
Finally, as John McCain said last week in the debate, "We send $400 billion a year overseas to oil-producing countries. Some of that money will end up in the hands of terrorist organizations....we have to eliminate this dependency on foreign oil because it is a national security issue".
Please do not vote for the flip-flopping, pandering, slimy Mitt Romney. If you are going to vote Republican, vote for someone with some integrity like John McCain.


haywood said...

The other benefit of "green" energy will be the economic impact it will have on the US. The manufacturing jobs that will remain and prosper in the US will be high tech. I think as America embraces alternate energy there will be significant positive impact on our economy.

I do have to give Romney credit for one thing. The other day on the Republican debates he was the only one I heard with a real answer on health care. You may not like it but at least he had an answer. I'm paraphrasing..."If you could afford health insurance and chose not to buy it, then you had to pay for your procedure." Seems reasonable to me....

Will said...

Steve - these are great topics. You're right on the money with the MI jobs issue, but was that a typo? McCain doesn't support improved retraining programs for those who lost their jobs?

As a side note, remember how Japan gained its huge competitive advantage in auto-making? A cheap labor force but also TREMENDOUS governmental influence and favoritism to automakers - tax breaks, performance incentives, etc etc.

Now when it comes to the free market and oil prices, you have pointed out a great example of the failure of the free market (which I recognize was not your intention and you may not agree). The price of any scarce resource obviously incorporates the production cost (in this case extracting and refining oil) which is directly passed on to the consumer. But other costs such as pollution and injury to nat'l security and not incorported into price in the free market; these are called 'externalities'. The only way to incorporate externalities into price is to tamper with the free market via legislation: in certain situations where the public good (e.g. an intact ozone layer and a terrorism-free homeland) is at stake, government must make corrections to the free market to influence consumer behavior.

On another side note, how elastic do you think the market is for gas? Can we assume a 1:1 ratio of increased price to decreased consumption (i.e. perfect elasticity)?? hells no my friend. Have you been on a highway lately? people love their SUVs/cars and despite rising fuel costs consumption seems to be as robust as ever. (I don't really know if that's true but it seems like it.)