Thursday, November 13, 2008

I’m a market-oriented guy

You know, I waited the entire election for just the right moment to use Lord Randolph Churchill’s jibe against William Gladstone, “an old man in a hurry,” against McCain, but I waited too long, alas.

Today Bush spoke to the Manhattan Institute about the global economy.

WHAT IMAGINARY PEOPLE SAY TO GEORGE: “People say, are you confident about our future? And the answer is, absolutely.”

BUSH CHANGES HIS ORIENTATION: “I’m a market-oriented guy, but not when I’m faced with the prospect of a global meltdown.”

WHAT HISTORY HAS SHOWN: “History has shown that the greater threat to economic prosperity is not too little government involvement in the market, it is too much government involvement in the market.”

HE HEARS VOICES: “In the wake of the financial crisis, voices from the left and right are equating the free enterprise system with greed and exploitation and failure.” I thought that was the point.

CAPITALISM DOESN’T KILL ECONOMIES; PEOPLE KILL ECONOMIES: “It’s true this crisis included failures -- by lenders and borrowers and by financial firms and by governments and independent regulators. But the crisis was not a failure of the free market system.”

“At its most basic level, capitalism offers people the freedom to choose where they work and what they do, the opportunity to buy or sell products they want, and the dignity that comes with profiting from their talent and hard work.” What does George know about talent or hard work, or dignity for that matter?

WHAT THE WORLD WILL SEE: “The world will see the resilience of America once again. We will work with our partners to correct the problems in the global financial system. We will rebuild our economic strength. And we will continue to lead the world toward prosperity and peace.” Maybe you need to stop and ask directions.

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