Best of the Week
Most Popular
1.The Trump Reset, US Empire's Coming Economic, Cyber and Military War With China (2/2) - Nadeem_Walayat
2.Now Is the Time to Buy Gold - 5th Jan 17 - John Grandits
3.CIA Planning Rogue President Donald Trump Assassination? Elites "Manchurian Candidate" Plan B - Nadeem_Walayat
4.The Trump Reset - Regime Change, Russia the Over Hyped Fake News SuperPower (Part1) - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Most Popular Financial Markets Analysis of 2016 - Stock Market Crash Postponed Again - Nadeem_Walayat
6.No UK House Prices Brexit Crash 2016 Despite London Weakness, Forecast 2017 - Nadeem_Walayat
7.President Trump Understands the NSA, CIA... LIE, America's Intelligence Agencies Crime Syndicate! -Nadeem_Walayat
8.President Donald Trump's 2017 New Year Message, BBC Fake News, Was 2016 a Dream? - Nadeem_Walayat
9.Major Stocks Bear Market Still Looms - Zeal_LLC
10.Biased 2017 Forecasts - Debt, Housing and Stock Market (1/2) - James_Quinn
Last 7 days
US Stock Market Update as the Trump Inauguration Approaches - 17th Jan 17
The American Crisis - Common Sense 2017 - 17th Jan 17
Obama Leaves, Hope Arrives, Will Stupid Stay? - 17th Jan 17
Damage Inflicted by Precious Metals Manipulation Is in the “Multi Billions” - Keith Neumeyer - 17th Jan 17
Gold Price Forecast 2017 Update - Video - 17th Jan 17
The Story of the U.S. Regime Change Plan in the Philippines - 16th Jan 17
Gold Price 2017 Trending Towards $1375 as Forecast - 16th Jan 17
'Deep State' CIA Director States We are Not NAZI's, Warns Trump Does Not Understand Russian Threat - 15th Jan 17
UK House Prices Forecast 2017 - Crash or Bull Market? - Video - 15th Jan 17
SPX Stocks Bull Market Update - 14th Jan 17
President Trump vs the Deep State that Hides in Plain Sight - 14th Jan 17
The Impact of Sir Alex Ferguson's Retirement on Man United's Share Price - 14th Jan 17
What Can Stock Market Tell You About Politics? - 13th Jan 17
Big Gold Buying Coming 2017 - 13th Jan 17
A Bullish Case for Gold 2017 - 13th Jan 17
Will Stocks Bull Market Continue to Charge or is it Time to Sell the News - 13th Jan 17
Gold and Silver Off To Shining Start to 2017 - 13th Jan 17
Gold’s Fundamental Outlook for 2017 - 13th Jan 17
Is trading stocks and shares just as luck-based as roulette? - 13th Jan 17
Trump CIA Like Nazi Germany - Fake MI6 Intelligence leaked to Fake News Mainstream Media - 13th Jan 17
USD in Decline. SPX and TNX May Follow - 12th Jan 17
CIA War On Trump - Leaks Fake MI6 Intelligence to Fake News Broadcast Media - 12th Jan 17
Registered Address.co.uk London Business Registered Office Address Mail Forwarding Review - 11th Jan 17
13 Contrarian Economic Predictions For 2017 - 11th Jan 17
10 Potential Black Swans and Opportunities for the US Economy in 2017 - 11th Jan 17
How to Get a Bird of Paradise Plant to Flower - UK Growing Video - 11th Jan 17
The No.1 Energy Stock To Buy Right Now - 10th Jan 17

Free Instant Analysis

Free Instant Technical Analysis


Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

What Can Stock Market Tell You About Politics?

Why Mitt Romney Lost the U.S. Presidential Election

Politics / US Presidential Election 2012 Nov 08, 2012 - 03:00 AM GMT

By: Ian_Fletcher

Politics

If Romney had won, I'd be saying it was because Americans have a long, long history of booting incumbents who preside over high unemployment and economic weakness.

This much is true. In fact, I think Romney counted on it all too much. In the end, his case against Obama came down to “Your economy sucks.”


I guess he figured it worked for Reagan.

But no, actually, it didn't. Reagan's case against Jimmy Carter in 1980 wasn’t merely a negative one, but backed up by a well developed and then-new alternative philosophy of economics.

You can disagree with that philosophy, in whole or in part, and question how new under the sun it was, but there's no question that there was a “there” there. Tax cuts, deregulation, laissez faire, supply side economics, and the Laffer curve amounted to something substantial.

Reagan had a positive vision, and that makes all the difference. What matters in politics isn't what you're against, it's what you're for.

What did Romney have? A thin “five point plan” with less substance than Ronald Reagan's offhand remarks. The same old Republican orthodoxy, and thus only of interest to orthodox Republicans. Tax cuts that weren't irresponsible because tax increases would make up for them--so they weren't really tax cuts, just changes.

None of this was inevitable. The political space exists for a new rightist vision of the economy. It's called economic nationalism.

This position says that America's economy has been getting sick from uncontrolled globalization for years now, and that the answer is to reassert our original economic tradition, which goes back to Hamilton, of running our economy explicitly in the national interest, not in mere deference to the supposed benevolence of free markets.

Its first big policy would be repudiating free trade. (This I support.)

Its second big policy would be cutting mass immigration. (I take no position here, but it’s a natural part of the package.)

If Romney had been serious about these policies, he could have offered the American people a real alternative to Obama. Both these policies are popular with the voting public, and even more so with the rightist and centrist voters Romney needed to win.

Romney did make some noises about cracking down on China’s abusive trade relationship with the United States. He did take positions on immigration (especially illegal) that were more opposed than Obama. I even thought for a while that he was really going to ride these issues.

But he didn’t. He took the positions best for him, but never really used them. His campaign, in the end, was all “Your economy sucks.”

I don't know why he did this. Perhaps he didn't understand his need to offer a serious alternative and a positive agenda. Technocrats like Romney and Michael Dukakis can be shallow in that way. Perhaps he thought he could win without them. Perhaps his shadowy backers waved him off.

In any case, Al Gore is no longer America's only presidential “nearly man.” And I remain convinced Republicans must turn to economic nationalism if they are to have any future at all.

Ian Fletcher is the author of the new book Free Trade Doesn’t Work: What Should Replace It and Why (USBIC, $24.95)  He is an Adjunct Fellow at the San Francisco office of the U.S. Business and Industry Council, a Washington think tank founded in 1933.  He was previously an economist in private practice, mostly serving hedge funds and private equity firms. He may be contacted at ian.fletcher@usbic.net.

© 2012 Copyright  Ian Fletcher - All Rights Reserved

Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.


© 2005-2016 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

Catching a Falling Financial Knife