Economic Advisors to McCain & Obama
Don Pedro provides us lists of Obama’s economic advisors and other economists who support Obama – an impressive group. He also provides us a list of McCain’s economic advisors, which is much shorter and has a serious problem. The only name on that list that would impress me is that of Douglas Holtz-Eakin. And (alas) Don notes how Holtz-Eakin has been making some really silly arguments of late trying to defend McCain’s fiscal proposals.
But what about McCain’s other economic advisors? Well, there appears to be only one other economist on this list – that being Kevin “DOW 36000” Hassett. Maybe Phil Graham received a degree in economics but his career has been that of a politician. Carly Fiorina’s claim to fame was being the CEO of HP but that is not exactly the same as being a Ph.D. in economics with tenure at Harvard. And when one has to reach to the bottom of the barrel – as in calling Donald Luskin and Arthur Laffer one’s economic advisors – one really should not be running for President of this nation. Someone please tell me that Don Pedro’s list is incomplete and inaccurate.
Update: Election Stocks says I missed something from Andrew Ferguson of the Weekly Standard. I did and I should thank him for noting that the list used to include “Warren Rudman, Pete Peterson and the Concord group”. But Election Stocks should have read further as Andrew made this important point:
What makes it odd is that those people aren’t like each other at all, at least when it comes to their economic views. A couple of them, if you put them in the same room, would set off an intergalactic explosion like the collision of matter and antimatter. One adviser, Jack Kemp, is the man who talked Ronald Reagan into embracing supply side economics in the 1970s, which launched the Reagan boom of the 1980s. He’s the world’s bubbliest advocate of tax cuts, dismissing the traditional Republican fixation on balanced budgets as “root canal” economics. Another adviser, Peter Peterson, is root canal economics. He’s a dour Jeremiah who called the Reagan boom a “mad, drunken bash” and thinks steep tax increases on income, gasoline, tobacco, and alcohol, on top of a 5 percent consumption tax, are necessary to put the government’s finances in order. He and Rudman run the Concord Coalition, an advocacy group that regards the federal government’s budget deficit as the country’s foundational economic problem.
The problem with McCain is that he is listening not to the sensible people at the Concord Coalition but to the hacks like Jack Kemp and Arthur Laffer. A hat tip to Andrew Ferguson for pointing out that McCain is a serial flip-flopper!