[* Editor's note: This post includes content from Mark Thoma's blog that was edited for length from the post Jeb Bush's Claims and Reality — with excerpts and paraphrased comments from readers — along with my own content and links. The following was not meant to compliment Obama, but only make a comparison been "the better of the two evils" — the only choice we've had for generations — and why Senator Bernie Sanders says we need a "political revolution".]
Obama's overall job growth is all but tied with Ronald Reagan's — and Obama beats both Bushes (G.W. by a considerable margin). But Obama loses to Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter.
But the most relevant comparison here is to G.W. Bush, because Jeb Bush (a.k.a. Jeb!) promises to follow his father's policies for the most part. And by that comparison, Obama would win soundly for job growth.
And excluding temporary census workers, it's not because Obama added more federal government workers. Washington Post: "The stimulus bill included payments to states to help save “government” jobs, such as those of teachers, firefighters and the like [but] the number of government workers overall has dramatically declined under Obama."
It should also be noted that the number of federal jobs has also not grown with the economy (a.k.a. stocks and profits) — and neither have private sector wages, especially when compared to union and government wages (who get COLAs, supposedly based on inflation).
So if you want slower growth, poor job creation, tax cuts for the wealthy, less government services, persistently low wages and cuts in social programs ... and if you want health care to be more costly and less accessible and higher drug prices ... and if you want safety and environmental policies rolled back ... if you want all of this and more, then Jeb Bush is the man for you.
Why won't our politicians ever admit that lowering taxes on the rich only makes the rich even richer? (They only hoard their excess gains.) And do we really want another Bush to start wars for big oil — or another Clinton to sell out American workers to get more corporate-sponsored trade deals that mostly offshore jobs to low-wage countries?
And we don't want another "moderate" Republican" who's been masquerading as a "liberal" Democrat — like Obama, who's been accuse of being a Kenyan Muslim Socialist. We'd be much better off with a real Socialist — such as an Independent democratic socialist/Progressive Democrat — someone who is currently a U.S. Senator from Vermont.
With crypto-fascists dominating the Republican Party, and center right conservatives dominating the Democratic Party ("moderates" like Hillary Clinton or Joe Biden), a progressive must now claim to be a socialist. The Overton Window now appears to be hung akilter.
Someone needs to tell Jeb Bush that it was his father that first called the GOP's plan for "trickle-down" economics "voodoo economics". And anyone that understands, knows that the magnitude of any so-called "growth" resulting from tax cuts to the rich doesn't even come close to making up for the loss of tax revenues. I'm sure Jeb! knows this, because his father (GW) does. So, that must make Jeb! a liar.
How is it possible that we can be so far past the "voodoo trickle-down" policies of Reagan and GW (with so much data that provides direct evidence to the contrary), but still these politicians think they can continue to make this kind of claim? It is just plain maddening how relentless they are in attempting to keep the general public "dumbed down".
How is it possible that trickle-down keeps failing, and yet, the GOPsters keep trotting it out as the road to salvation (rather than the road to perdition)? Maybe it's also because we have a dysfunctional press that refuses to confront politicians with reality — media commentators who are afraid of insulting or embarrassing them — fearing they won't return to be on their news shows. (Chuck Todd Defends not Challenging Republican Lies on Meet the Press).
Trickle down has worked perfectly well as a policy to put more money in the pockets of the rich. But it failed regular working people, and was only a spectacular "success" because it kept filling the pockets of the rich — which was primarily the GOP's goal. But a politician cannot come out and publicly say: "I want to give more money to my rich friends and fuck you minions". They have to hide their real platform in order to get elected. So why would a working-class American ever vote against their own best interests and for a Republican?
The GOP not only wants to cuts taxes (which would mostly benefit the rich), but they also want to increase military spending. How do they propose we do that? Simple: just cut other government programs that the middle-class, working-class and the poor mostly benefit from (including working-class Republican voters) — and that's why Social Security and Medicare has always been a huge target for the GOP establishment.
The GOP has constantly tried to convince us that government is bad (when capitalism requires government), that taxes are bad (when government requires fair taxation), and that trickle-down is good (when really it's just a plan to make the rich richer and make everyone else much poorer.)
But all told, is Jeb! really any worse than all the other people in the GOP primaries?