If John Kasich was as good at creating jobs as he is about talking about creating jobs, Ohio would be among the top job creation states in the nation. Instead, Ohio now ranks 29th in the nation in job creation, according to the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, and has now entered its 33 straight month of job growth below the national average.
Kasich’s Poor Grasp of Economics
There was the governor again this weekend, spouting off about what makes the economy work. He was campaigning on his favorite TV network, Fox News, where he earned big bucks hosting his own political talk show and substituting on occasion on The O’Reilly Factor.
He’s made the same argument throughout his long and lucrative political career, that if only government would reduction regulations and give more financial incentives to companies, the combination would “spark a more robust economic recovery,” as one report portrayed Mr. Kasich’s comments. On his Fox News segment, Gov. Kasich said, “We have so many regulations that are choking not only big, but small businesses. And I think, combined with corporate incentives, balancing (federal) budgets and deregulation, I think the American economy will begin to grow again. And growth is the most important element in America.”
The Reagan Relic Still Believes In Supply Side Economics
Still a believer in supply side economics, which was a popular theory during the Reagan years and promoted by one of the governor’s favorite Republican heroes, Jack Kemp, a Congressman from Buffalo who served with Congressman Kasich until Reagan brought him aboard to run the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Typical of Republicans, who set out to work against President Obama from day one in 2009 until the present and actively sabotaged his stimulus plan that helped stabilize states like Ohio that took big hits during the Great Recession of 2007, Gov. Kasich criticized the recovery under the president as “the most anemic” from “a serious recession since World War II.” Kasich showed he’s still an amateur economist unschooled in recession history, because he confused the Great Recession, the second worst economic meltdown since The Great Depression of the 1930s, with the many recessions that take a toll but don’t put the nation on the brink of depression.
Gov. Kasich, who isn’t creating jobs fast enough for Ohioans and still has about 60,000 more jobs to make up before Ohio fully recovers from the Great Recession, cried crocodile tears for those who lost jobs and still can’t find another that pays as well since most of the governor’s created jobs pay the minimum wage or a little more. “I mean, they are concerned about losing their jobs at the age of 51 and what’s going to happen, and, secondly, a lot of people have not seen their wages go up.”
Over the years, Gov. Kasich has bungled consolidating job training programs that could help those who have lost jobs, regardless of their age. He’s never been asked, and therefore has never answered whether, as a supporter of a federal balanced budget amendment, he would slash Workforce Investment Act funding that pays to prepare employees for private sector companies.
For those who have lost jobs, Gov. Kasich has reduced their time to receive unemployment compensation and maintained his opposition to raising the state of federal minimum wage. To show his compassion only goes so far, he’s made the task of putting food on the table for many Ohioans that much harder by selecting only certain counties where access to supplementary food assistance is less rigorous than others.
Before he became governor, in 2010, John Kasich worked for Lehman Brothers, one of the so-called ‘big boys” of Wall Street, for years. The crash of Lehman triggered the Great Recession Mr. Kasich has confused with the kind of short-lived recessions the nation has bounced back from in the past when Democrats and Republicans worked together. That previous cooperation is no where to be found today by the likes of Kasich and his brood of Republicans, who want to reign in government further than they already have at the state and federal level.
Kasich says it’s all about productivity. “And right now, big companies seem to be just buying back stock and not investing in plant and equipment. And if you don’t invest in plant and equipment, you can’t give the tools to the workers to increase productivity.” Mr. Kasich still struggles under the delusion that companies can expand if they want, but they don’t want to because taxes are too high or regulations are too tough.
John Kasich still doesn’t understand that demand is the driver, not excess corporate cash. Corporations have never been as profitable as they have been, and buying back stock is one choice to use their great profits. Another would be to boost the wages of their workers, without whom they wouldn’t be profitable. Workers with money in their pockets spend it, and spending creates demand, which in turn creates a reason to invest in plant and equipment. Mr. Kasich appears not to understand this basic axiom of economics.
Kasich, being the good and schooled Republican he is, has reduced regulations wherever and whenever possible. Arguing that federal regulators “need to bark … but bite when they see the big boys beginning to do things that are inappropriate,” is both rich, from a comedic view, and hypocritical since his talk is designed to deceive. Ohio is creating jobs too slowly under Gov. Kasich, so before he declares himself the chief and savior American need, he should show by doing in Ohio.
As history will show, but Gov. Kasich will never admit, he worked for one of the “big boys” and what they did to game the subprime mortgage industry, through dangerous and risky leveraging that eventually collapsed like a house of cards, was very inappropriate. Gov. Kasich says his time at Lehman taught him how business really works. What he learned at Lehman, that he duplicated in Ohio, is leveraging cash flow. He did it with JobsOhio, using state liquor profits to bond out over decades, and with the Ohio Turnpike, whose tollway revenue was like wise bonded out nearly as far as the eye can see. John Kasich got some fast cash, but the state is stuck with his debt repayments for decades into the future.