The ironically named "Business Week" has a deeply flawed but otherwise interesting piece this week:
As we wrote in September, even Reagan’s economist did not find any evidence that the Reagan recovery had come from the Reagan administration’s personal income tax cuts. Over the last four years, apostate Republican thinkers such as Bruce Bartlett and David Frum began to agree. Then most of America did. Even a group of CEOs of major corporations came around to the idea that raising tax rates on the rich would not hamper growth.
But no sitting Republican politician joined them, certainly none with big plans. Until this week. Bobby Jindal is both: governor of Louisiana and a strong prospect for 2016. On Monday he told Politico, “We cannot be, we must not be, the party that simply protects the rich so they get to keep their toys.” He also said the party shouldn’t tolerate “bizarre, offensive comments” or “dumbed-down conservatism.”
First, an aside: trickle-down economics does work, regardless of what Business Week thinks or claims. We've seen it just in the last decade: thanks to the Bush Tax Cuts (and despite Obama's efforts to undo them), corporate profits are at an all-time high. Tax cuts for the rich work. What economists understand and which the Business Week author does not is that trickle-down takes time. It's a two-step process:
The Bush tax cuts were only enacted ten years ago. Trickle-down takes time, and the economy will begin to see the rewards soon -- that is, of course, unless Obama is successful in raising taxes on the wealthy. If that's the case, he will have undone ten years of economic progress.
But back to the curious case of Mr. Jindal.
In the week before the election, he was out there, campaigning for Mitt Romney. But almost immediately after Obama won re-election, Mr. Jindal changed his tune, spewing anti-GOP rhetoric to CNN, Politico, and whoever else would take the time to write about what he said (only Fox News has taken the appropriate journalistic restraint and opted not to give him more attention than he deserves).
Mr. Jindal's rantings were political opportunism at its worst; a knee-jerk reaction to misguided assertions that the GOP must make special efforts to reach out to women, the youth, Latinos, Blacks, and Asians.
Let the Democrats divide our nation by gender, age, or ethnicity -- they're good at it. What Mr. Jindal appears to have forgotten is that the GOP -- the party of Lincoln -- is the party for everybody. Making concessions for special interest groups would mean to destroy the heart and soul of the Republican party.
Is Mr. Jindal making a play for the 2016 candidacy? Many sources say yes. But he's premature; this temporary silliness about a deadly change of course for the GOP will pass. And three years from now, if he decides to throw his hat into the ring for the Republican primaries, the treasonous things he's said over these last few weeks will come back to haunt him.
Our advice for Mr. Jindal? Yes, run for president in 2016 -- but as a Democrat. You've laid the groundwork perfectly.