In case you’re wondering, a zombie idea is a proposition that has been thoroughly refuted by analysis and evidence, and should be dead — but won’t stay dead because it serves a political purpose, appeals to prejudices, or both. The classic zombie idea in U.S. political discourse is the notion that tax cuts for the wealthy pay for themselves, but there are many more. And, as I said, when it comes to economics it appears that Mr. Rubio’s mind is zombie-infested.
Start with the big question: How did we get into the mess we’re in?
The financial crisis of 2008 and its painful aftermath, which we’re still dealing with, were a huge slap in the face for free-market fundamentalists. Circa 2005, the usual suspects — conservative publications, analysts at right-wing think tanks like the American Enterprise Institute and the Cato Institute, and so on — insisted that deregulated financial markets were doing just fine, and dismissed warnings about a housing bubble as liberal whining. Then the nonexistent bubble burst, and the financial system proved dangerously fragile; only huge government bailouts prevented a total collapse.
Instead of learning from this experience, however, many on the right have chosen to rewrite history. Back then, they thought things were great, and their only complaint was that the government was getting in the way of even more mortgage lending; now they claim that government policies, somehow dictated by liberals even though the G.O.P. controlled both Congress and the White House, were promoting excessive borrowing and causing all the problems.
This is the first I've heard of a zombie idea.
Reading of more insightful of those critiques, instead of Krugman's tirades (he too, is ideology driven) should convince most people that it's not an open and shut case.
Yes, Krugman has a flat tire and patches it up and it goes flat again. I haven't read him for some time. Is he still claiming banks must be bailed out?
If you want to talk about "zombie" idea, what about supply-side economics? The current basis for that got started back with Ronald Reagan, over 30 years ago. It didn't work for Ronny, it didn't work for Dubya, it continues NOT TO WORK ... and yet the GOP clings to it like a zombie eating its brains!
George H. W. Bush called it, "voodoo economics," and I can't help but notice that not many republicans remember that, nor do they much want to acknowledge the utter failure of supply-side in the current day and age. What supply-side does is make the rich wealthier and trickle-down? WHAT Trickle-Down???
I'm beginning to think it's going to take a bit of voodoo to kill THIS particular zombie!
I distinctly remember H.W. referring to it as "voodoo economics" during the primary race against Reagan. And Loren, both you and H.W. are correct - it didn't work then, doesn't work now, and I doubt that it ever will. It is, to me anyway, proof that Einstein's definition of insanity was spot on.
You have this one figured out.
It is clear, Democratic and Republican control of both Congress and the White House results in a growing gap between rich and poor and losing wage-earners' safety nets. Does that mean that both parties exist under the control of a common influence? Oh No! That can't be true!
Excuse me! If a father is under the influence of some substance and a mother is under the influence of some substance, and they neglect their responsibilities, the kids suffer. A strong and competent father and mother work together as a team to help the kid flourish even if they have differences about how to raise children.
We need teamwork in Congress and a president who works for a flourishing nation. With both branches plus the Supreme Court coming under the influence of small government that protects profits while ignoring workers presents a perfect storm for collapse of justice.
Add in the corruption and dangerous principles from religion, this nation fails to perform its job to govern for all the people's benefit.
And while we're talking about that missing brick in the wall, what about the whole "voucher" business? I haven't liked it from the get-go, but so long as some schools, particularly inner-city schools, are doing poorly while private schools (ESPECIALLY parochial schools) are doing just spiffy, what's going to happen is that people will want to go to the spiffy schools and drain the money from the public schools, which are already flying about 1/2 a mile an hour above stall speed as it is.
The long and the short is that:
Loren, I agree with you 100%. Good public education prepares individuals to be good citizens. If we raise up a batch of dummies, we have a poorer nation.