For the longest time, Canton has ragged on how Reagan raised taxes. You know, not a real conservative???<quoted text>
Reagan's tax cuts for the wealthy was supposed to "trickle down" to the masses. For many years prior, gains in productivity translated into rising family incomes for the workers. Ever since the Reagan tax cuts, those increases in productivity have only benefited the wealthy few.
So are tax increases or decreases responsible?
To answer that, I cite my favorite conservative economist, Dr Walter Williams:
Politicians, businessmen and labor-union spokesmen have whined about the decline in U.S. manufacturing. Before looking into what they say is the sad decline in U.S. manufacturing, lets examine what has happened in agriculture. In 1790, farmers were 90 percent of the U.S. labor force. By 1900, only about 41 percent of our labor force was employed in agriculture. By 2008, less than 3 percent of Americans are employed in agriculture. What would you have Congress do in the face of this precipitous loss of agricultural jobs? One thing Congress could do is outlaw all of the technological advances and machinery that have made our farmers the worlds most productive. Our farmers are so productive that if needed, they could feed the entire world.
Lets look at manufacturing. According to Dr. Mark Perrys Department of Labor employment data, in his article Manufacturings Death Greatly Exaggerated, U.S. manufacturing employment peaked at 19.5 million jobs in 1979. Since 1979, the manufacturing workforce has shrunk by 40 percent, and theres every indication that manufacturing employment will continue to shrink. Before you buy into the call for Congress to do something about manufacturing job loss, there are some other facts to be considered.
According to the Federal Reserve, the dollar value of U.S. manufacturing output in November was $2.72 trillion (in 2000 dollars). Todays manufacturing worker is so productive that the value of his average output is $234,220. Output per worker is three times as high as it was in 1980 and twice as high as it was in 1990. For the year 2008, the Federal Reserve estimates that the value of U.S. manufacturing output was about $3.7 trillion (in 2008 dollars). If the U.S. manufacturing sector were a separate economy, with its own GDP, it would be tied with Germany as the worlds fourth-richest economy. The GDPs are: U.S.($14.2 trillion), Japan ($4.9 trillion), China ($4.3 trillion), U.S. manufacturing ($3.7 trillion), Germany ($3.7 trillion), France ($2.9 trillion) and the United Kingdom ($2.7 trillion).
So tax cuts are responsible? Seems to me that (according to Dr. Williams statistics) automation is our greatest enemy--not tax cuts.