Quote of the Day   Leave a comment

Fareed Zakaria “But, first, here’s my take. The attacks and counterattacks in this presidential campaign are, I supposed, inevitable. But let’s be honest, they’re largely untrue or irrelevant.

Whatever the paperwork shows, Mitt Romney was not running Bain Capital after February 1999. Even if he had been, outsourcing jobs to lower a company’s costs and, thus, ensure its survival is not sleazy; it’s how you run a business efficiently. Is President Obama suggesting that we put up tariff barriers to prevent outsourcing in the future?

On the other side, Romney’s recent claim accusing the president of shoveling government grants to his political supporters is so twisted that it earned him “The Washington Post Fact Checker’s highest score for distortion, “Four Pinocchios.” And his recent refrain that Obama’s views are “foreign.” It is frankly disgraceful

Below all this mudslinging lies a real divide. Obama has been making the case that the U.S. economy needs investment in infrastructure, education, training, basic sciences and technologies of the future. Those investments, in the president’s telling, have been the key drivers of American growth and have allowed people to build businesses, create jobs and invent the future.

Romney argues that America needs tax and regulatory relief. The country is overburdened by government mandates, taxes, rules that make it difficult for businesses to function, grow and prosper. He wants to cut taxes for all, reduce regulations, streamline government. All this, in his telling, will unleash America’s entrepreneurial energy.

Both views have merit. It would make for a great campaign if the country had a sustained discussion around these ideas. Then, the election would produce a mandate to move in one of these directions.

Now, I think Obama has the stronger case. We do need a tax and regulatory structure that creates strong incentives for businesses to flourish. The thing is we already have one.

The World Economic Forum’s 2011-12 Global Competitiveness Report ranks the United States No. 5 in the world and number one among large economies. Whether compared with our own past of, say, 30 years ago or with other countries, the United States has become more business- friendly not less over the last 30 years.

America is worse off than it was 30 years ago in infrastructure, education and research. The country spends much less as a percent of GDP on infrastructure, research, development, education, and training than it did in the 1960s, 70s and 80s. We spend half as much on R&D as we did in 1960.

The result is that we’re falling behind fast. In 2001, the World Economic Forum ranked U.S. infrastructure second in the world. In the latest report, we’re 24th. In the 1970s, America led the world in the number of college graduates. As of 2009, we were 14th among the countries tracked by the OECD.

In other words, the great shift in the U.S. economy over the past 30 years has not been an increase in taxes and regulation, but rather a decline in investment in human and physical capital. President Obama has real facts on his side, which makes it somewhat depressing that his campaign has focused on half-truths.”

 

http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/1207/22/fzgps.01.html

 

Posted July 23, 2012 by tmusicfan in Politics, Quote of the Day

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