Controlled comparisons

by Henry on September 19, 2003

Dan Drezner has a new “piece”:http://techcentralstation.com/091903D.html up in Tech Central Station. He suggests in passing that the EU, which used to be considered a trade liberalizer, is now an economic and political mess.

bq. Policy processes that generate illogical macroeconomic rules, incoherent foreign policies, insane agriculture subsidies, and interminable constitutional proposals have not showered Brussels with economic glory.

Fair enough. But what about US ‘policy processes’ under the Republicans?

* Illogical macroeconomic rules. “Check”:http://www.nytimes.com/2003/09/14/magazine/14TAXES.html?pagewanted=print&position=
* Incoherent foreign policies. “Check”:http://talkingpointsmemo.com/sept0301.html#0907031101pm.
* Insane agricultural subsidies. “Check”:http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/1978525.stm.
* Interminable constitutional proposals. “Check”:http://www.chron.com/cs/CDA/ssistory.mpl/politics/2106343.

In theory, the EU should find it much easier than the US to make a mess of things. It’s composed of fifteen argumentative sovereign states, each with its own turf to defend. But appearances deceive: US Republicans to be labouring under no comparative disadvantage at all. They’re screwing things up with quite extraordinary vigour and gusto. Kudos. I seem to remember that once upon a time, people thought that the Republicans too would be trade liberalizers. Word on the street is that they’re not only protectionists, they’re “incompetent protectionists”:http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A31768-2003Sep18.html. Anyway, I’d take eurosclerosis any day of the week, if the alternative were the shambling monstrosity that is Bush’s macro-economic policy.

{ 3 comments }

1

Williamr 09.19.03 at 7:51 pm

Interminable constitutional proposals? Seven years ago Republicans were insisting we needed to amend the Constitution to require balanced budgets.Now that they control the budget process,
massive deficits as far as the eye can see don’t seem to be a problem. Shameless hypocrisy!

2

Barry 09.20.03 at 6:47 pm

Maybe it was sabotage. Somebody intercepted a copy of Drezner’s paper. They then substituted ‘Brussels’ for DC, ‘EU’ for ‘GOP’, etc.

3

theCoach 09.21.03 at 3:22 pm

This country will not be right again until we pass an amendment outlawing the desecration of the American Flag, with an exception, of course, for Presidents signing little American flags while campaigning.

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