March 11, 2009

'Wrong You Are, If You Think You’re Right'

Luigi Pirandello’s classic, “Right You Are, If You Think You Are,” is the leitmotif of a thoughtful and insightful post by Roger L. Simon at The famous play, he says, “came immediately to mind when I read the results of the new Rasmussen poll reporting 53% of Americans see our country headed for a Depression similar to the 1930s.” Now, he continues, “the question is whether this will be a self-fulfilling prophecy,” in fact President Barack Obama seems “to be encouraging this.”

It’s quite the same here in Italy, but curiously, while in the US the “jinx” is the ruling Administration, in Italy, as noted here a couple of days ago, the wet blanket is the center-left opposition. As a result of this game with reversed roles, while the left-leaning US President seems to be mostly engaged in imposing “cap-and-trade schemes,” the right-leaning Italian Prime minister seems to actually prefer more “traditional” and effective ways to stimulate the real economy.

“What strikes me now more than ever,” says Roger Simon,

is how deeply psychological all things economic are. Of course, we have all always known that, and of course there are substantive matters like a world’s worth of unpaid mortgages and weird paper that would turn Bernard Baruch into a pretzel, but still, investors have to have some measure of faith in the economy for business to continue in capitalist society. For the moment, that’s gone. It’s more like “Wrong You Are, If You Think You’re Right.”

Pirandello, I’m sure, would have appreciated the irony.

Look, Mr. President, priority No. 1 is to create jobs!

“Forget Rush Limbaugh,” writes Patrick O’Connor, in fact “for all the focus on the king of conservative talk, Democrats may have found a more important villain in House Minority Whip Eric Cantor.” And here is why (via Gateway Pundit):

House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) seized on the opportunity to criticize the president Tuesday for over-reaching in his first 50 days on the job.

Following the GOP's weekly conference meeting, the second-ranking House Republican told reporters that President Obama should be focusing on the "economic crisis," as opposed to holding four-hour meetings on healthcare, as the president did last week. The efforts may be laudable, Cantor said, but the White House should be devoting all resources to fixing the economy and not to "impose these cap-and-trade schemes."

"At the end of the day, we are in an economic emergency. Economists are saying that there's a 30 percent likelihood that we're going to be in a depression," Cantor said. "My goodness, we do have an emergency, and we oughta say, look, priority No. 1 is to create jobs."