Do We Have A President Or A King?

Editorial written by James Baughn on Wednesday, March 21, 2001

from the thank-goodness-for-term-limits dept.

Imagine a country in which the leader can alter the state of the economy with a wave of his hand. "Let there be prosperity" he decrees, and the economy booms within days. "It's time for a recession", he then decrees, and the economy tanks within days.

Would that leader be called a President... or a King?

The US has enjoyed a period of relative economic prosperity, but now the stock market is falling and things are looking iffy. Democrats, who gave credit to Bill Clinton for the economic prosperity, are now blaming Bush for the looming recession.

Republicans are now claiming that Clinton merely inherited the good times from his predecessors and then dumped his problems on George W. Bush.

But does the President have that much control over the economy? No! For Bill Clinton to single-handedly bring about an economic boom would be to say that Bill Clinton is a king. For George Bush to single-handedly destroy the economy during the two months he's been in office would be to say that George Bush is a king.

Do we want the President to have that much control over the economy?

Of course not! By why does the American public insist on acting like the President is a king with unlimited control over the economy? We should give credit where credit is due -- to every single person who has contributed to the economy. We should give blame where blame is due -- to every single person who contributed to the recession. Period.