Rick Miller '71 Op-Ed: "Comparing Obama to Bush"

From The Gazette (Iowa):

President Barack Obama partisans think his predecessor, George Bush, and Obama are so different. I wish they would subject Obama to the same standards to which they subjected Bush. If they did, they couldn’t possibly support him.

Surprisingly, economic policy is one area where they are more alike than different. Both of them directed hundreds of billions of dollars to favored constituencies at the expense of the rest of us.

Bush directed money to faith-based organizations, as one example. Other examples are more subtle. He increased federal education spending by leaps and bounds, to the benefit of public sector unions. This was probably an attempt by the Republicans to convert this powerful interest group to their side even though Democrats have the public sector unions locked up for the foreseeable future.

Another Bush-Republican attempt to buy off an interest group was expansion of Medicare to include drug coverage, Medicare Part D. That made sense politically because the elderly are the most powerful interest group in every democracy. It doesn’t make sense as economic policy when most of those receiving a subsidy don’t need it and we can’t afford another entitlement program piled on top of the ones we already have.

Meanwhile, Obama and the Democrats have appropriated hundreds of billions of “stimulus” dollars to, among others, state and local governments. Thus, public-sector jobs (a Democratic Party constituency) have grown in number during much of the current recession while private-sector jobs plummeted. Any connection there?

Read the rest of the article here.