Friday, August 1, 2008

The Terminator,Paterson, and the Shock Doctrine

Gov. Schwarzenegger is threatening to cut thousands of state jobs and move thousands to the minimum wage. While it is a bargaining chip with the GOP legislature to move them to pass a budget, this draconian approach is another example of Noami Klein’s Shock Doctrine. The doctrine says that Milton Friedman radicals will use political or natural crises to impose radical economic policies.
Gov. Paterson is using the same shock doctrine. He is ignoring the better approach to taxes and spending during a recession. It is better to stimulate consumer spending by using the state to promote economic activity. Cutting programs, employees and expenses is the wrong way to go. He is ignoring the good advice of Nobel prize economist Joesph Stiglitz. See his letter to Paterson (linked below).
The conservative forces, like the Empire Center, are using the current economic crisis to reduce government services. The Center’s policy director E.J.McMahon suggests state spending will increase 11% next year. That is an increase that most analysts disagree with.
These same shock doctrine troops want a property tax cap. This is a bad idea, and could have serious consequences. A circuit breaker is a better way.———————-If the polls continue to show a tight race, Obama should go with Hillary for vp.

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