December 11, 2011 live blogging the debate
Started a few minutes late, listening to Ron Paul assert usual orthodoxy. Invokes Japan as example of failed policy- but doesn’t Japan have 5% unemployment? And didn’t Americans end the Depression in WW 2 by doing pretty much the opposite of what he supports?
9:09 Perry brags about Texas jobs record. I’m not sure I’d be as proud of 8% unemployment as Perry is, especially given that he is running a petro-state.
9:10 Bachmann calls NFIB “a small business agency.” Lobby, yes, agency, no (its not part of the government).
9:11 Santorum says manufacturing is good. Repeats drill, baby, drill. Wasn’t there an oil spill in this country a couple of years ago? How pro-business was that?
It doesn’t seem like Sawyer is asking really tough questions, just asking people to repeat their positions.
9:14 Bachmann opposes payroll tax cuts, calls it Obama plan of “temporary tax gimmicks” not “permanent solutions.” Mentions Obama several times, making it clear she’s against whatever Obama is for. Raises good argument- financing Social Security through general treasury does create a long-term precedent.
9:16 Romney responds- its a “band aid” but it’ll “help people.” Pivots to Obama weaknesses. Says America has become less attractive place to invest than others. Less attractive than Europe? I’m not too sure given all the bad news from Europe. Less attractive than low-wage countries? I don’t think there’s any way you can compete with them on wages.
9:18 Santorum shows intellectual agility, noting how Democrats champion Social Security trust fund but are now starving it with payroll tax cut. Unfortunately, this argument would be more convincing if the Bush Adminstration (supported, I suspect, by Santorum) hadn’t also favored starving the trust fund through privatization.