It never ceases to amaze me that people who worked for G.W. Bush have any political credibility whatsoever or are considered to be “Very Serious People” on economics. Republican Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels is occasionally mentioned as a presidential contender, but the tax cuts he did much to get through did little or no good for the economy and on the larger economic questions, the ideas that Daniels pushed are what Paul Krugman refers to as “austerity economics,” and they’ve proven to be utterly disastrous in practice. Amazingly enough, Daniels is even considered to be an acceptable emergency fill-in substitute presidential candidate for Mitt Romney by “ ‘the adults’ in the [Republican] party.”
Thomas Friedman, the poor man’s “deep thinker,” is pushing for David Walker, who headed up the Government Accountability Office from 1998 to 2008 before leaving to take the helm as President of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, to be taken seriously as a presidential candidate. Again, this is an economist who has little or nothing to recommend him. Walker was conducting “a ‘fiscal wake-up tour’ around the country in the years 2004-2008 to try to call attention to the problem of the budget deficit.” Problem of course, was that the housing bubble popped during this tour and promptly caused far more misery and havoc than anything that Walker was busy earnestly warning the country about. I didn’t find any evidence that Mitch Daniels had any opinions about the housing bubble during this critical time. To be fair, Daniels was busy being Governor of Indiana during that time, but it’s most curious how no reporter is known to have ever asked Daniels why he missed the housing bubble.
What’s truly amazing is that these are people who completely failed the country during a time when sensible economists were very sorely needed. Why are they being considered “Very Serious People” today?!?!!?

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