Friday, 17 April 2009

FROM THE NEARBY PEN: Why not Obama-nomics?

The following is a guest post written by Daniel of The Nearby Pen and The Guru 5:
Have you used the term Obama-nomics to refer to the policies being put forward by President Obama? Do you think this helps or hurts the cause you're fighting for? Assuming that you are an advocate of liberty and individual rights, here are three reasons why you should never use that term:
1. It's excessively vague. Does it mean "bottom-up economics" (as opposed to "top-down") or does it mean increased government spending while taxing "the rich" even more? It may mean something unique to each person, which makes arguing against Obama-Nomics a mistake. Instead, state with clarity the moral premise of the economic policies, what they require in practice, and the name for the economic system that they approach.
2. It's not a new economic policy--and there is nothing really to distinguish it from a ton of failed programs in the past including those of the previous administration. There is no need to create a new term, and it is actually confusing to do so. Obama's policies approach the economic system known as socialism. This system has been tried countless times before (in many nations) and with equally disastrous results. Why advocates of socialism desperately want a new label should be as obvious as why you, an advocate of capitalism, should not give one to them.
3. It's guaranteed to waste your time. Leaving aside the vagueness of the term, and how using it without reference to all of history makes predictions about the practical effects of such policies (almost) irrelevant, recognizing each new label used, and arguing against them individually, commits one at the start to a political discussion focused on ever-changing concretes and labels. One could spend their whole life taking part in such fruitless arguments. And many have. But it is not recommended.

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