Phil Gramm’s Nation of Whiners
Posted by Ryan on July 11, 2008
Wednesday, Phil Gramm, former Senator from Texas and Presidential candidate back in 1996, said the following in an interview with the Washington Times:
“You’ve heard of mental depression; this is a mental recession,” he said, noting that growth has held up at about 1 percent despite all the publicity over losing jobs to India, China, illegal immigration, housing and credit problems and record oil prices. “We may have a recession; we haven’t had one yet.”
“We have sort of become a nation of whiners,” he said. “You just hear this constant whining, complaining about a loss of competitiveness, America in decline” despite a major export boom that is the primary reason that growth continues in the economy, he said.
Gramm also happens to be John McCain’s top economic adviser. Calling the electorate “whiners” is not a good formula for victory, so McCain threw Gramm under the bus yesterday for the comments, which the MSM was gleeful in saturation reporting of this — plus, it got Jesse Jackson’s castration threat of Obama off the front page real fast!
On the merits, Gramm or anyone in politics needs to know that it’s much easier to understand how $4.50 at the pump hurts the average commuter rather than the technical definition of recession as two consecutive quarters of negative growth or economic contraction. Technically, we’re not in recession — so Gramm is right.
But, the electorate has the right to complain, don’t they? Right. So, Gramm clarified his statements later saying that he meant it is the MSM and our leaders who are being doom-and-gloomy, which is giving the public a false economic picture when looking at the facts. Again, Gramm is right about the fundamentals of his argument, but the MSM is not any Republican’s friend, and statements like this are giving the Dems another reason to use the age-old argument that Republicans are just a bunch of country-club blue-bloods out of touch with the average American.