And he’s just much smarter than any of us, so listen:
JH: Now, we’ve heard people say that this is a uniquely bad economic situation — that it could be as bad as the Depression, etc. However, looking at GDP and job loss numbers, it doesn’t look as bad as, say, the recession in the early 80s. So how bad is this really and if you were advising the president, what would you tell him to do?
Thomas Sowell: Resign.
JH: (Laughs) That would be helpful.
Thomas Sowell: Yes, because he is determined to interfere in the market. How did we get out of the recession in the early 80s? Reagan did nothing. The economy adjusted and we’ve had 20 years of growth, low inflation, and low unemployment. Many people argue that the New Deal got us out of the Depression by spending. Well, the New Deal spent for years without getting us out of the Depression and then the war came along. The defenders come along and say, “You see with the war, spending increased and that did it.” What the war did was put an end to the New Deal. When the New Deal ended, the economy revived…
…JH: Now, I’d like you to elaborate on something you wrote in National Review back in 2007:
When I see the worsening degeneracy in our politicians, our media, our educators, and our intelligentsia, I can’t help wondering if the day may yet come when the only thing that can save this country is a military coup.
Thomas Sowell: That’s true, unfortunately. I just noticed this morning that … I am getting more and more emails from people who are simply despairing. They are saying that we may have reached the point of no return. We have had dumbed down education for enough generations that people don’t even realize that it’s dumbed down education. We have propaganda against all the institutions of this society, literally from the elementary school to the universities. You can’t raise a whole generation of people who don’t know how to think but are taught to resent anything that they don’t understand, and expect that you are going to survive in the long run.
JH: One last question: if John Boehner, Mitch McConnell, Michael Steele — the guys who are leading the Republican Party today — came to you and said, “Thomas, we respect you. Tell us what you think we should be doing.” What would you tell them?
Thomas Sowell: One good thing they are doing right now is not going along with this stimulus. Too often, the Republicans have acted as if they have to be players and join in with the Democrats so we can all go over the cliff together. The other thing is that they have got to learn is to talk. The inarticulateness of the Republicans can be fatal politically.
Obama is a man entirely out of his depth and you don’t need the immense intellect of Thomas Sowell to see it – but it is important to understand that Obama’s plans are based on the false premise that the New Deal helped. It didn’t – it just made the Depression deeper and longer. You can’t spend money you don’t have an come out ahead of the game – the more you spend money you don’t have, the worse it gets. This can be easily understood by anyone sitting around in a swank house which has lost half its alleged value while surrounded by tip-top consumer goods and $35,000 in credit card debt at 29.99% – that guy, if he’s any sense at all, wishes he had no house and no goods and no debt.
Unfortunately, Obama and his boys and girls are not people who have actually had to live in the real world – ensconced in the overlapping worlds of advocacy, education and government, they’ve never had to produce a product for the market, nor measure up to a strict set of standards for success. And when we take the clueless (like Obama) and couple him with the corrupt (like Pelosi and Reid), then we get a toxic political mix which can result in utter catastrophe. The liberals are driving us off a cliff which will lead, at best, to an economic depression, at worse will land us in civil war.
The key, now, is for those who understand just how bad these liberals are is to stand fast – all of those, right, left and center, who know that Obama is a false promise and a tin-plated messiah must hold the line as much as possible, and work for a new political alignment in 2010 and 2012 to first slow, then reverse, the damage Obama and his Democrats are inflicting on the nation. There once was a liberal who did say something smart – we have nothing to fear but fear, itself.