Capital Commerce’s James Pethokoukis talked to Mitt Romney last week, not on the political horse race, but on the economy:
1) Romney on the the state of the economy:
This is a downward spiral where you have two elements encouraging the other down a steep slope. On one side you have the collapse of the stock market and housing market which means Americans have less net worth and as a result they feel poorer and as a result they buy fewer things and as they buy fewer things, business see greater losses and that in turn depresses the stock market even further and this a self-actuating downward spiral. … It was my belief that we should have put in place a stimulus plan earlier than the one that was put in place. And I don’t think the president’s plan is as focused and targeted as it needed to be. But nonetheless I think it has some portions that will help. But this certainly is not over yet and hopes of a quick rebound are quickly fading.
Romney is concerned about excessive spending,
2) Romney on the White House economic forecasts:
I think it’s really hard to project when the bottom will be hit and how steep the upturn will be. I am confident that the economy will recover. It always has. The entrepreneurial spirit of the American people is able to pull us out of downward trends. I do believe that the invisible hand of the free market is far more effective than the heavy hand of government. … Sorry, the only economic system which has been proven to work in the history of mankind is the free market and capitalism and any efforts to move us toward socialism will not be successful in our society. … But I think it is unrealistic, however, to plan for spending based upon an upside case for the economy. I think it would be a massive error to choose as our objective a budget deficit four years from now of five hundred to six hundred billion dollars in the good times that the president is predicting, a budget deficit of that scale is unacceptable.
Go read the rest of the interview.
James has another great post, Market to Obama: I’m Just Not That Into You
In short, save the stock market, save the world. Indeed, while Americans should reduce their debt and save more, a good chunk of that savings needs to go into wealth-building assets. And by that I mean stocks and bonds. Obama needs to rekindle America’s love affair with investing. Indeed, this could be a once-in-a-generation opportunity to let people start investing some of their payroll taxes into the stock market. Buy low, sell high. Indeed, even many of left-of-center analysts contend that unless Rising Asia becomes Disappearing Asia, excess global labor supply will continue to push down hard on wages. Families have to earn income from assets as well as a job. Free-marketeers prefer Social Security privatization, while liberal might be more comfortable with government financed “baby bonds” for kiddies.
The markets are tanking because investors are voting on the Obama administration’s proposals.
James has much more – go read it all.