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Move beyond the wrongheaded focus on budget cuts?

August 5, 2011
Political Roots in U.S. Economic Crisis

By nearly every recent measure — growth, consumer spending, manufacturing, house prices and stock prices — the American economy is struggling. The jobs report for July, released on Friday, was a bit better than expected, but still grim.

The question now is whether Washington will move beyond the wrongheaded focus on budget cuts — the last thing a faltering economy needs — to job creation.

Washington may be in denial, but the rest of the country knows what’s going on. A New York Times/CBS News Poll, released the same day as the July jobs report, showed that by a ratio of more than two to one, Americans say that creating jobs should be a higher priority than cutting spending.

The poll also showed that a record 82 percent of Americans now say they disapprove of Congress, a sentiment that is surely fed by the belief of an overwhelming majority who told the pollsters that the debt ceiling fight was more about gaining political advantage than doing what is best for the country.

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