What would the economy be like if McCain had been elected president?

On conservative message boards I see a lot of griping about “Obamanomics” and how unemployment and the deficit has skyrocketed during his administration.

But would McCain have been able to do much more to fix the economy? Other than not pushing through HCR, would he have been inclined to do much different from what Obama has done?

The deficit as a percent of GNP is at its third highest level (highest peacetime level) and is over twice as large as during the Depression. That being said, unemployment is still at 9% not taking into account underemployment or people who have given up. I don’t know about your neighborhood, but in mine you can’t sell your home. There is no housing market. In a historical perspective, I think “Obamanomic” will be known as the failure of Keynesian economics.

But what would have McCain done? “The Stimulus” was already passed. Money was given to banks for loans but they held on to the money because apparently no one involved with that program remembers the failure of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation (look at the section Decline in Bank Lending Concerns RFC and New Deal Officials) in which the banks did the same fucking thing as the did today. We’d still in Iraq and Afghanistan. Common folk would still be paying too much in taxes and corporations/people who can afford to take advantage of loopholes would be paying too little.

I’d say the only difference would be that our debt would be less but for Main Street USA, not much else would be different.

This is a world economic crisis. Nothing would be different. But, if McCain had won, the Dems would be calling for his head, just like the Repubs are, of Obama.

I answer your question with a question. If McDonald’s had, instead of Ronald McDonald as a spokesman, the Burger King King, how would a Big Mac taste?

Sure, but all of that stuff is a result of things that happened before Obama entered office. Are you suggesting that the Obama stimulus did nothing at all? Because that’s kind of silly. If you’re suggesting that it had an effect, but wasn’t worth the cost, that’s a more reasonable argument.

You should have used the quarter-pounder as an example so someone could have replied “Like a Royale with Cheese”

It’d still taste like a shit sandwich.

Whether or not the deficit, unemployment and lack of home sales is Obama’s fault or not. The facts of the matter is that.

  1. Obama has actively encouraged raising the deficit in the name of Keynesian economics and that the stimulus package passed before he was President is only a part of the increased deficit.

  2. Any recovery (and I would argue that in real terms there has been no recovery) is minor and there is no way to link it to Obama’s economic policies as opposed to normal economic fluctuations. Even if you could definitively link whatever recovery we have to Obama, it is far below what he predicted he would do. Therefore you can blame Obama for either implementing a failed economic plan or being unrealisticly optimistic. Either way, Obama was elected to fix the economy and he has failed to do so.

You can certainly write an apoligetic for the state of the economy under Obama, but my points were directed to the OP’s question.

  1. He mentions Obamanomics. Obamanomics is Keynesian and I pointed out that under his system there has been major deficits with little benefits. True or False?

  2. Specifically the OP asked if things would have been different under McCain. Both McCain and Obama (and Palin and Biden too) favored the ill-conceived bank bailout, and the Stimulus including bailing out the car manufacturers which as predicted will lose money.

As a hijack, IIRC Obama said the US would end up making money on the deal but I can’t find the quote. Am I mistaken?

And gave money to financial institutions to reward the people who caused the problem to begin with. McCain would still be in Iraq and Afghanistan like Obama is. Under McCain, the tax structure would still be the same.
Net effect if McCain were elected? zero

Except that the Obama stimulus clearly has had an effect, even if it hasn’t had the effect he predicted. Without it, we’d have a lower deficit, but we’d also have even higher unemployment. You can say those would cancel out, but they’re certainly not “zero net effect”.

tl;dr: Anything bad that’s happened is Obama’s fault, anything good that has happened is part of normal economic fluctuations. :rolleyes:

To be pedantic, what proof do you have that the deficit spending has reduced unemployment and that it was not a natural rebound once the economy hit bottom?

But forget that for a second. What is the real unemployment rate taking into account underemployment and people giving up? I’ve heard 15-20%. And even if I grant that it would be a few percent points higher without Obama’s deficit spending, look back at my postings - I never said the Obama didn’t reduce unemployment. I said that in real terms the economy has not recovered at all. Unemployment is one factor but do you take into account that house prices are estimated to fall another 8% next year? Do you take into account that I know at least 12 people that were laid off in the last two months and are still job-hunting? Do you take into account that because of budget cuts, my son’s school district is now going to start charging students to ride the bus to and from school and already charge the students a $5 bus fee for field trips? Are you claiming for the average American that their economic outlook and job security are better today than 2008?

Shockingly enough, no, I’m not taking your personal anecdotes I’ve never heard and don’t care about into account.

Were you in a coma in 2008 or something? People were predicting a second Great Depression. Small to midsize businesses unable to meet payroll because short term credit was unavailable. 25% unemployment. Cats and dogs sleeping together, etc.

Do I think things are better today than for most of 2008? Of course not. Do I think things are much better than they’d be with another 2 years of Bush (or 2 years of McCain, which amounts to the same thing)? Yes.

Real actual humans who have studied economics don’t dispute that government spending boosts the economy.

Your trouble is you are buying into the conservative fantasy worldview where cutting the deficit is the key to job growth. No actual economist thinks that’s true.

Recession starts. Demand is down. Employers cut jobs. Until demand is up, jobs stay cut. Demand can be increased by stimulus measures. Cutting taxes does nothing to raise demand.

Ummmm . . . when did I say that? All I asked was for any sort of evidence that links Obama’s stimus to an improved economy. Otherwise you may be commiting a Cum Hoc fallacy.

The housing crisis was really created by the House Banking Committee under Barney Frank when they rejected Bush’s call to reform Fannie Mae. The though Bush was racist when he thought the government should guaranty homeloans only to thos that could afford them. But Bush is not totally blameless. His attitude when the economy tanked was “Fuck it! Let the new guy handle it.” He needed to show some leadership along with the House Representatives that publically threatened to block the stimulus then voted for it. Oh and btw, the stimulus plan that both side of Congress agreed to sucked balls but they passed it anyway in the name of doing something. Thus I hold Obama (and McCain) responsible as 1% of the Senate passing a bill also passed by the House signed by a President who probably would have signed a bill subsidizing eel-fart importers by that time.

I don’t blame Obama for the economy taking a crap because he wasn’t even President at the time and to be honest, seeing all of the Democrats on this board and economists claiming that Keynesian economics is the panacea for a nation’s economic troubles I don’t really blame Obama for trying to spend our way out of it.

BUT, I do hold Obama responsible for not living up to the hype. I don’t think any economic policy would have gotten us out of this mess but Obama talks (IMO out of his ass) about all the new jobs created that even if they did occur are nowhere close to the numbers promised. I also hold Obama responsible for blowing sunshine up my ass in that for 2.5 years I’ve been hearing how the economy is turning around (after 2.5 years and he’s still flipping a bitch?) and we need to sustain the growth while I drive by another For Sale sign in my neighborhood (I think it is foreclosed but not sure) and have yet to see a sign taken down this year. Oh, and gossiping about the new people that lost their jobs last week.

Please get your facts straight. “The stimulus” was NOT passed before McCain would have taken office. TARP was passed before the election, and both McCain and Obama supported it.

The stimulus was signed into law on February 17, 2009. McCain opposed it. The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office has reported numerous times that the stimulus has measurably helped the economy. Without the stimulus, GDP growth would have been as much as 3 percent lower than it has been, unemployment may have been at 11% today (as opposed to 9.1%), and as many as 4 million jobs would not have been created.

So, my main point is that if you wish to argue that McCain’s economic policies would have been better than Obama’s, you may wish to get the basic facts right on what Obama has done to address the recession.

So maybe you should have actually read my post or are you intentionally ignoring that

My point was even if the deficit spending created more jobs, the economy AS A WHOLE has not improved under Obama. Housing prices, CPI, consumer spending/savings, value of investments, etc all play a role in the economy along with the employment rate.

Oh and are you saying all economists are Keynesian? Have you read any of Milton Friedman’s work after 1954? Is he not a real human being or did he not study economics? How about Friedrich von Hayek?

It’s not like Obama had the power to fully enact his plan of economic recovery. There was a lot of resistance from congress, mainly republicans, if you recall. There ended up being a compromise that nearly half of the stimulus spending would be in the form of tax cuts.

I think we could lay blame on Obama if he was able to fully implement his plan and it didn’t meet expectations, but otherwise it’s unfair to do so.

I don’t recall this; what did he predict he would do?

Sure. And employment is necessary to get the other stuff running.

I’m saying that Austrians are discredited and unscientific.

There was a prediction that unemployment would top at 8% if the stimulus were enacted.

What the lying Republicans on TV leave out when the cite this, is that the prediction was based on the numbers we had access to at the time. As it happens, the economy was actually much worse than we thought.

Also, the Republicans in the house and senate forced the stimulus to have a ton of less efficient tax cuts.