Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased in 43 states and the District of Columbia in 2011, according to new statistics released yesterday by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). New Jersey moved in the opposite direction.
New Jersey was among the few states which actually experienced a GDP contraction: -0.5% and that explains why government revenue is also down. New Jersey’s unemployment rate was 9.1 percent in April, a full percentage point above the national rate.
New Jersey is now the 47th state out of 50, measuring from best to worst, in economic performance. Only Wyoming, Mississippi, and Alabama are worse off. We are the brakes on the national economic recovery.
Governor Christie will go on pushing his fiscally unsustainable tax cut which will have no economic effect because a single such measure does not stimulate aggregate demand – the missing link in our economy.
But blaming the policies of Governor Christie alone for the economic decline is a gross simplification of the facts. Unfortunately, almost everyone, including the media, prefer simplifications. Candidate A vs Candidate B; or Raise Taxes vs Cut Taxes. That is why single issues become so disproportionally influential in elections: Abortion, Guns, Gay Marriage, etc .
The reality is that in New Jersey, regardless of what candidate we elect, the roots of the problems are in the political system. And attacking the system is not safe. I have already been harassed for what I am doing and this is just the beginning. We are not even in our election year yet.
A candidate fails New Jersey the moment he/she shuns to even attempt to revamp that system. I mean really doing change; not just propaganda and token tinkering.
What is the political system? The two dominant political bureaucracies, Home Rule, political patronage, political money, the tax code, the laws that skew the political contest in favor of the two parasitic parties, and more.
But it is much easier to focus on one face than on a myriad of political and economic reforms.
As I have said many times: It is not so much what Governor Christie has done. It is what he has not done. His sin is for the most part in omission.
If elected governor, my administration will be made up of technocrats. The mission will be to put New Jersey on a path of economic growth and social balance. Nothing will be untouchable.
In a presidential election year, a gubernatorial candidate for the year after is a lone wolf. However if we look at the two presidential candidates, Obama and Romney, there are differences in positions but when we come to the actual actions, they do not look as distinct. Obama appears as the lesser of two evils. Telling of our political drought is the fact that many people vote for one candidate just to keep the other one out of office.
New Jersey shall have a more diverse menu in November 2013.