Sticking to the GOP’s economic script

Every time we see fresh evidence of the economy’s weakness or fragility, Republicans are quick to blame the White House. After all, if Obama is president, and the economy stinks, it must be his fault.

But in order for this to make sense, the administration would have to be getting its way when it comes to economic policy. Then Republicans would have a credible case to make: if only we’d try things the GOP’s way, we’d finally see great results.

As Greg Sargent explained in a gem of a post, Republicans have nothing to complain about, since we’re already sticking to their script.

No hiring surge is going to happen until Obama and Dems actually agree to do it their way in policy terms.

No hiring surge will happen until that job killing stimulus spending winds down; until Dems allow Republicans to extend the Bush tax cuts on the rich; until Dems agree to deep cuts to Federal programs; until municipal governments are forced to cut back and fend for themselves; until Dems embrace the notion that government must tighten its belt to restore business confidence; and until Dems begin seriously basing their policy response to unemployment on the conservative idea that if we only reduce the deficit, a thousand economic flowers will bloom. Only then we’ll see the surge in employment we’re all waiting for.

Oh, wait…

Very nicely done. I know Greg and I have both been banging this drum for a long while, but the point is largely missing from the larger discourse. Whether Republicans want to admit it or not, the economy is advancing exactly as they want it to. The private sector is being left to its own devices; the public sector is shedding jobs quickly and scrapping investments; and debt reduction is at the top of Washington’s to-do list.

This is the playbook the GOP put together. When it’s followed and it fails, Republicans should be prepared to accept responsibility for the consequences, instead of pretending they’re not getting their way.