Why is there no political price to be paid for policies that might hamper an economic recovery?

(written by lawrence krubner, however indented passages are often quotes). You can contact lawrence at: lawrence@krubner.com, or follow me on Twitter.

Seems to me the Republicans are not the problem. They are simply pursuing their rational self-interest, given the circumstances. The deeper issue is why do such circumstances exist? How is it that leaving unemployment at 10% will help the Republican party? Why is it the Republicans will pay no political price for leaving 15 million unemployed?

[J]ust before the mid-term elections, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell candidly told the National Journal, “The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.” If that means doing nothing to help 15 million Americans searching for work who can’t find it, too bad. If that means blocking ratification of a nuclear arms control treaty with Russia that’s wholeheartedly backed by all the top U.S. military leaders as needed for national security, so be it. If that means stone-walling efforts to stimulate the economy with business tax cuts, or blocking extension of expiring jobless benefits, that’s the way the cookie crumbles. If that means changing the law to direct the Federal Reserve to stop paying attention to unemployment and focus solely on inflation in its monetary policy decisions, we’ll ignore the fact that core inflation is the lowest in half a century.

There is an old story where two Marxists are walking down the street, and they come upon an unemployed factory worker who is begging for spare change from passerby’s. One of the Marxists immediately reaches in his pocket to fetch some change to give to his fallen comrade. The other Marxist stops him and says “Don’t delay the Revolution!” The idea is that Marxists benefit by allowing the factory workers to suffer, because only when the suffering of the factory workers reaches the worst extreme will the workers revolt. What is odd about the current situation in the USA is that it is now the Republicans who are pursuing this strategy.

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