Liberal Democrat

Liberal Democrat
Father of American Liberalism

Saturday, December 17, 2011

PBS: The American Experience- President Jimmy Carter: Curbing Inflation

Source: PBS- 
Source: PBS: The American Experience- President Jimmy Carter: Curbing Inflation

President Jimmy Carter wasn't really at fault for the problems and issues that confronted him as President. He inherited a lot of those issues from the Nixon and Ford Administration's. Where President Carter was at fault is how he responded to probably the worst economy America had since the Great Depression and perhaps since. With high unemployment, interest and inflation rates to go with low economic growth and the 1979-1980 recession.

All of these thing happening under President Carter's watch and he didn't seem to have much of an idea in how to respond to them. President Carter is one of the most intelligent President's we've ever had, even Conservative Republicans would acknowledge that. But he's one of the weakest leaders we've ever had. I believe even Democrats would acknowledge that I'm one of them. Which is one reason why Senator Ted Kennedy ran for President against him in 1980. Taking on the leader of his own party.

President Carter had a great ability analyze and understand what the problems that the country were facing. But did have a much of an idea in how to address them except for energy policy and fiscal policy as well, to a certain extent calling for eliminating waste in the Federal Government and to reform the Federal Government and balancing the Federal budget.

But the problem was President Carter put a lot of those goals ahead of growing the economy. One of the reasons why it was so weak from 1978-81 under his watch when you have a weak economy especially a recession, you have to concentrate on economic growth to produce job growth. In order to put people back to work and when those things happen. Then you can concentrate on balancing the Federal budget with extra revenue you've obtained from the economic growth and more people working and paying taxes, as well cutting back in government spending in areas you don't need to spend as much, as well as reforming government.

The Carter Administration did the opposite they cut back in spending, when they should've focused on creating more economic growth. Like with tax cuts, infrastructure investment, aid to states so they don't have to lay off workers, expanding foreign trade so American business's can sell more of their products, job training for unemployed workers, deregulating certain industries so they could hire more people by expanding their business's. They did do that with airline industries which did help the economy but later on in the 1980s.

To be a strong leader you have to know what the issues are and then what to do about them and then be able to communicate your policy's to the country to get them passed through Congress. Its a lot more work than just being able to figure out what the issues are. But also have an idea what to do about them and then communicate your message as well. President Carter was an excellent analyst, but poor visionary as far as what to do about the problems that he saw.