Wednesday, June 11, 2008

A do nothing Congress is often good news

Conservatives are calling this Congress something that has been used before, which is a "do nothing Congress." And it is true.

But, sometimes, in my humble opinion, doing nothing is better than doing something stupid. It always seems to me that every time there is a crisis, like a market crash or something, the Fed always thinks it has to come up with some kind of governmental solution.

Why? Why not just let the market work things out? Why not just get government out of the way and let people solve there own problems? For the most part, this strategy worked for Bill Clinton.

I never thought about why the economy was doing so well in the 1990s, that is until one day my dad tossed one of his political hints at me. He was never one to really discuss politics with his kids, or even let us know his political view, but he did drop a line once in a while, which in retrospect gives me a pretty idea of where he stands politically.

He said: "I don't think Clinton is that bad of a president. He has done nothing to screw up the economy, and therefore the economy under him is doing well. Sometimes doing nothing is good."

Like right now is a good example. High oil prices is one example. The housing market is also doing poorly, so you have all these people in Washington thinking they have the solution, and that if we just add this bill, or tweak this we can solve these problems.

It seems to me that every time the government adds this bill or tweaks this, they make matters worse. That's one of the reasons I think the great depression lasted so long. Sure, some of the changes of the New Deal were excellent, but I do thing some went overboard.

I say this because there were several depressions in this country prior to the great depression, and even though it was tempting for presidents and Congress to change a bunch of things, and add regulations, they had the common sense to leave well enough alone. And all those depressions were short lived. The market fixed itself.

And that's one of the reasons Ronald Reagan was so popular, because he got rid of a ton of governmental regulations that were in the way of the market, and holding people back. Look at all the creativity escalated with the Reagan boom, such as Microsoft and Rush Limbaugh to name a few.

Clinton was great at knowing when to act and when to not. He increased taxes once, but he cut the Capital Gains. Subtle changes, but he didn't do anything drastic.

Bush, IMO, was one to think he had to do something, so when there was all that corruption on Wall Street (Enron for example), he passed legislation the increased regulations, and may have even hurt businesses in the process. But he did this, as so many of our elected politicians do, just to show the people that he is aware of the situation and is doing something about it.

It didn't matter that his doing something may have made things worse.

Sure, it might have been something pointless. It may have been something stupid, but he did do something. Yadayadayada I say. I can think of several other areas I think the government ought to have just done nothing. I'm sure you guys can think of your own examples of a government program or regulation that should never have come to be.

Or better yet, those that never came to be.

I think a lot of the things our politicians do is simply for political gain. I think the dems attempt to tax the profits of gas companies would have been merely for political gain. And while there intent here was to lower the price of gas, it probably would have done the opposite.

I think the idea of National Health care is a great idea, but I think it would actually make health care in this country worse overall. Sure it will give all the poor people better health care, but all the people who have health care now, it will only get worse.

However, I could be wrong, and that's why we keep reading, and that's why we blog I think. We blog because we want to share ideas, and to grow as individuals. But none of us bloggers do things to screw up the country either. We only share ideas. At least that's the intend of this blog.

What's that they say about baseball? "Sometimes the best trades are those that are not made." I think the same can be true of Washington, that sometimes the best law is the one not made.

And even though times might be tough at times, and the gov tempted to do something about it, it's far better to do nothing than to do something stupid

For that reason, we can't complain about a "do nothing Congress." Actually, they deserve more credit than they will ever get.

And that is the thought of the day.

1 comment:

Nikki said...

Hey this topic. I disagree just a bit on the Clinton assessment. Sometimes the market is good because it is perceived to be good. The psychology of it is a huge factor and the unseen hand guiding the economy has really only become the President in the last few decades. Under the Clintn administration companies reporting high profit earnings were in fact inflating the numbers. Enron and many other companies were inflating numbers and affecting the stock market pushing it to fake profits and fraudulent upturn. Many made a ton of money in the 90's because shady accounting practices drove an inaccurate inflated economy...that's why the economy was downturning at the end of his administration. Bush has had to deal with the mess. The cycle of clean up is about 4 years from what I understand. 9/11 didn't help. great post and I can say that I have had a hard time finding something to post on and this is a great one! :)N