Romer Says Stimulus to Help U.S. ‘Battle’ Recession
By Timothy R. Homan
March 15 (Bloomberg) -- White House chief economist Christina Romer said the Obama administration is staging a “wonderful battle” against the U.S. recession and predicted the stimulus plan will help revive growth.
“It is an economic war,” Romer, chairwoman of the White House’s Council of Economic Advisers, said today on NBC’s “Meet the Press” program. “We haven’t won yet. We have staged a wonderful battle.”
U.S. gross domestic product is forecast to contract this quarter after shrinking at a 6.2 percent annual pace from October to December, the most since 1982. The jobless rate climbed to 8.1 percent last month as U.S. employers cut 651,000 workers from payrolls.
The economy’s “fundamentals are sound,” though ‘we know that temporarily we’re in a bad situation,” Romer said. She said she stands by an administration forecast that the $787 billion spending and tax cut plan will save or create 3.5 million to 4 million jobs.
Romer said the administration tomorrow will announce plans to help small businesses get access to credit.
“We know we’re doing a lot of help for banks, we’re doing a lot of help for homeowners. Small business people need it, too,” she said. “That’s all going to be announced tomorrow,” Romer said, adding that the money allocated will be “a significant amount.”
Romer also discussed the need to jumpstart consumer spending, which comprises about 70 percent of the U.S. economy, saying Americans “have not done a lot of spending” in the last 14 months.
Purchases contracted at a 4.3 percent annual pace in the fourth quarter, the most since 1980, after shrinking at a 3.8 percent pace in the previous three months, according to figures from the Commerce Department.
“We know consumers have lost a lot of wealth,” Romer said.
U.S. household wealth fell by a record $5.1 trillion from October to December, almost twice the decrease in the previous quarter, as home values and stock prices plunged, Federal Reserve figures showed last week.
The Bush administration is not to blame for the economic decline, former Vice President Dick Cheney said in a separate interview.
“I don’t think you can blame the Bush administration for the creation of the economic circumstances,” Cheney said in an interview on CNN today. “It’s a global problem.”
“The notion that you can throw it off on the prior administration is interesting rhetoric but I don’t think anybody cares about that,” Cheney said. “What people care about is what is going to work.”
WOW! WE’RE AT WAR!
And I thought our military was only designed to fight two wars at once! We must be fighting what, ten all once?! With so much war everywhere is there any wonder why everyone's rushing out to get guns & ammo?
“It’s an economic war,” according to the White House’s chairwoman of Economic Advisors… “fundamentals are sound.”
And thank God that the FUNDAMENTALS ARE SOUND!
And *DICK* Cheney isn’t responsible EITHER.
Now that we’ve declared war on a fundamentally sound economy, I THINK I’LL KEEP MY MONEY IN MY MATTRESS, THANK YOU VERY MUCH!
Well, here’s a little history/vocabulary lesson for all the boys and girls under the age of about 30… the term “war” used to mean that the official body of one government was officially engaged in armed conflict with the official body of another.
I’m sorry, but one cannot wage “war” against TERRORISTS, DICK Cheney. They would have to have an official government and their own country for that. But, hey, thanks for the use of that term because it really makes it seem as if THEY do.
And as twisted as the term “war on terror” is, it’s even more twisted to wage a “war” on drugs, or a “war” on poverty. But dammit, to declare WAR on our fundamentally sound economy is just taking the use of the term a bridge too far!
Oh, but not to worry, there’s always another announcement about how we’re going to save small businesses TOMORROW. Or in Geithner's case, he'll make the announcement today but tell you the details in bits and pieces to see if any of the central banker bullshit sticks.
Well, I may not be a head of state or even have my own government, but I’m declaring WAR on the use of the term “war!”
And if none of this makes any sense to you whatsoever... yes, you get it.
Clowns in a Central Banker Circus...