November 7th, 2014
05:32 PM ET

What I'm reading: A growth pact for America

By Fareed Zakaria

“The list of potential policy actions that could benefit the United States – trade liberalization, comprehensive regulatory reform, and immigration and education reform, among others – is long,” writes Glenn Hubbard for Project Syndicate. “But only two policies are particularly promising for such a ‘Pact for America’: federal infrastructure spending and corporate-tax reform. Enactment of these reforms would generate a win for each side – and for both.”

“But such a bipartisan consensus requires removing both the left and the right’s ideological blinders, at least temporarily. On the left, a preoccupation with Keynesian stimulus reflects a misunderstanding of both the availability of measures (shovel-ready projects) and their desirability (whether they will meaningfully change the expectations of households and businesses). Indeed, to counteract the mindset forged in the recent financial crisis, spending measures will need to be longer-lasting if they are to raise expectations of future growth and thus stimulate current investment and hiring.

“The right, for its part, must rethink its obsession with temporary tax cuts for households or businesses.”


“For airlines, Asia's skies aren't terribly friendly. According to data compiled by Bloomberg, six of the 10 initial public offerings by airlines in Asia during the past five years are trading below their sale prices. Legendary investor Warren Buffett, who swore a decade ago never to invest again in the airline business following his losing $358 million bet on US Airways, is surely feeling vindicated,” writes Dhiraj Nayyar for Bloomberg View.

“India should stand out amid this grim landscape. Passenger traffic has grown rapidly over the last decade. At its peak between 2003 and 2009, traffic grew somewhere between 20 and 40 percent per year. Growth hardly slackened even after the economy stalled in 2013: Traffic that year was up 5 percent over 2012. Packed airplanes, however, have not led to profitable airlines.”


“Trade negotiations test democracies to their limits. In the final phases, weary negotiators attempt to find common ground. Small interest groups that fear being disadvantaged become more shrill and intransigent; larger business and industry stakeholders that would gain by the deal fall largely silent; and the public, which would gain most of all, is confused. Media coverage is saturated with ever more strident rhetoric over ever narrower issues, overshadowing the fundamental interests at stake,” writes Dennis Blair in the New York Times.

“This is the stage we have reached in the American-Japanese negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Public debate has become dominated by, on one hand, the profits of pork farmers in Japan and the United States and, on the other, political maneuvering to assign blame in anticipation of a failure to close a deal. Lost in the discussion are the advantages to both countries’ overall national interest and an overwhelming majority of their respective citizens.”


soundoff (65 Responses)
  1. Dr. Silverstein

    You have a growth pact in your colon.

    November 7, 2014 at 7:09 pm |
  2. Bob O'tool

    Gimme a No.2 Growth Pact with curly fries and Pepsi please. To go.

    November 7, 2014 at 7:16 pm |
  3. Rocky

    Eva since I stahted goin to da gym I got a growth pact between my toes.

    November 7, 2014 at 9:35 pm |
  4. Mr. Impotent

    Extenz from Walgreens is my growth pact.

    November 7, 2014 at 9:39 pm |
    • banasy©

      Smiling Bob? Is that you?

      November 7, 2014 at 11:04 pm |
      • Hailey

        No, it is your boyfriend from India. Bend over.

        November 8, 2014 at 3:54 am |
      • banasy©


        November 8, 2014 at 11:25 am |
  5. Ahkmed the Terror Guy

    Can hardly scare anyone with al Qaeda anymore. Am for to be thinking of retirement.

    November 7, 2014 at 9:46 pm |
    • Ahkmed the Terror Guy

      Like, bigs deals. All you got is Al Qaeda disguised as illegal Mexicans with cans of anthrax instead of refried beans sneaking across the border? We got ISIS and Hindu rapists, yo. Is hard to compete these days.

      November 7, 2014 at 9:51 pm |
      • Mr. Impotent

        The Empire State Building is really cool.

        November 7, 2014 at 9:54 pm |
    • Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©

      No! Stay!

      November 7, 2014 at 10:57 pm |
      • Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©

        That was about @ Ahkmed's threatened retirement. I expected my post to appear below his.

        November 7, 2014 at 11:00 pm |
      • Philip

        So you prefer to be below Gupta in bed.

        November 8, 2014 at 11:08 am |
  6. chri§§y

    Lol yea so we heard. Beavus and butthead liked the empire state building too. Lmao

    November 7, 2014 at 10:19 pm |
    • banasy©

      Heh heh. Heh heh heh. You said "ass".

      November 7, 2014 at 11:02 pm |
    • Hailey

      Did you cannibalize in India tonight?
      Being that is a ritual there.

      November 8, 2014 at 3:55 am |
      • banasy©

        I have never been to India. Sorry.

        November 8, 2014 at 11:27 am |
      • Philip

        You should take your wife to India to get raiped

        November 8, 2014 at 1:08 pm |
      • banasy©

        That's not a very nice thing to wish on Hailey's wife, Faux Philip.

        November 8, 2014 at 1:21 pm |
  7. Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©

    I hope that Glenn Hubbard realizes that reform of education is impossible without students' knowing that it is possible to Fail courses, and that they are not guaranteed a diploma for simply attending classes.
    As for the good stuff, money, 'the Right" does not simplistically expect to mend the economy by lowering taxes on the rich, without other actions.

    November 7, 2014 at 11:09 pm |
    • banasy©

      Oh, and cut funding for education.
      Because it's the "Right" thing to do.

      November 7, 2014 at 11:59 pm |
      • Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©

        Funding is not the problem with our educational system. If we spent three times as much, the results would be the same unless the pupils' sense of their responsibility to learn could be restored to what it was sixty years ago.

        November 8, 2014 at 5:07 am |
      • Philip

        Exactly. Why throw good money after bad? Even with degrees they are still stupid. The average grad student.

        November 8, 2014 at 11:00 am |
      • banasy©

        It absolutely plays a part in it.

        November 8, 2014 at 11:36 am |
    • Hailey

      Yeah you people have a budget for raiping in India. Tiffin boy.

      November 8, 2014 at 3:56 am |
  8. Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©

    If y'all want to read books that will restore a USA growth pact, we've had them for decades: THE FOUNTAINHEAD, and ATLAS SHRUGGED, both by Ayn Rand.
    They are solid gold.

    November 7, 2014 at 11:17 pm |
    • banasy©

      Those who live like Ayn Rand will probably die like Ayn Rand.

      November 8, 2014 at 12:00 am |
      • Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©

        Evverybody dies...almost everybody.
        I am the only exception.

        November 8, 2014 at 5:10 am |
      • banasy©

        Shhhhh! You'll end up a lab specimen.

        November 8, 2014 at 11:39 am |
    • Hailey

      Really? They teach yiu about human sacrifices to hindoo deities, eh mate? Errrr raipist!

      November 8, 2014 at 3:57 am |
      • Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©

        That is a possibility. Not as offerings to imagined deities, but to alleviate overpopulation.
        New York, New York, is an unbearable town. The Bronx is up...
        Remember Green! Make everything Green!

        November 8, 2014 at 5:22 am |
      • Philip

        Oh c'mon. You'd love human meat masala in India Restaurant

        November 8, 2014 at 11:05 am |
      • banasy©

        You seem to have experienced it, faux Philip.
        Care to write your Yelp review?

        November 8, 2014 at 11:40 am |
  9. Dr. Silverstein

    The growth pact has spread to your lymph nodes and breasts. I'm afraid I'm going to have to knock-down 20K and operate on you for about 45 minutes or less., Sorry 'bout that.

    November 7, 2014 at 11:21 pm |
    • Dr. Silverstein

      You could have saved yourself $80 bucks and did the Angelina Jolie thingy. But noooo. You had to wait and pay me 20K.

      November 7, 2014 at 11:25 pm |
      • banasy©

        I hope like hell you never suspect yourself of getting testicular cancer.
        How proactive would you get?

        November 8, 2014 at 12:02 am |
      • Hailey

        You like s ukking balls in India? Om Om Om

        November 8, 2014 at 3:58 am |
      • Dr. Silverstein

        Testiculars aren't my forte. I specialize in all things Asstro and Gastro.
        "Here Asstro" – Elroy Jetson

        November 8, 2014 at 11:09 am |
      • banasy©

        I have a feeling breasts aren't your forte, either.

        November 8, 2014 at 11:44 am |
  10. Hailey

    Just another day in the life of jobless ex call center hinddoous from India for whom there is no other way to pass time. Just read the comments... No substance .... No class ....just pure boredom, despair, jealousy, hatred, divisiveness,

    November 8, 2014 at 3:53 am |
  11. Dr. Silverstein

    Well, Miss Jackson. It's just what I suspected. You have a growth pact of nostril flesh just like Michael did. Afraid I'm going to have to operate.

    November 8, 2014 at 10:13 am |
  12. Paid Basher

    Sometimes when Indians take off their shoes it stinks.

    November 8, 2014 at 10:14 am |
  13. Philip

    Really? Really? Indians stunk like the sewer treatment plant in Bronx. I don't mean Cherokees.... but hindus.

    November 8, 2014 at 11:07 am |
    • Paid Basher

      Man You're better at bashing Indians than I am. Mind if I use that one? My boss is kind of on my ass to bash harder. You may have noticed others really going at it hard on Indians. Harsh bosses.

      November 8, 2014 at 11:57 am |
      • Philip

        Them hindus typically work slurpees at 7-11 or sayx motels

        November 8, 2014 at 1:09 pm |
  14. Paid Basher

    Indians have domestic violence problems.

    November 8, 2014 at 11:59 am |
  15. chri§§y

    So do many american citizens @ Paid Basher! Only difference is most women are so embarressed by it they dont report it. That and the fact that a great many law officials are guilty of domestic violence so they dont do anything about it when it is the perp a free pass to do it again and again and again!

    November 8, 2014 at 1:01 pm |
    • Philip

      Most of them are Indian hindoos on H1B. Hey do you work the Asian escort service?

      November 8, 2014 at 1:12 pm |
      • banasy©

        Is that the only way you can get it, Faux Philip?

        November 8, 2014 at 1:24 pm |
    • Philip

      Sheesh. That's what my reply would have been, Chrissy. Most families keep familial child raype a secret. Even forcing young girls to travel into Mexico for abortions before legal in order to cover for the child molester. Creepy. But everywhere. Is the root of our nationwide depression epidemic and love affair with anti-depressants such as Xanax and Prozac.

      November 8, 2014 at 5:56 pm |
  16. rupert

    Islam sux

    November 8, 2014 at 5:17 pm |
  17. rupert

    Blue Saffron sux

    November 8, 2014 at 5:18 pm |
  18. rupert

    Philip sux

    November 8, 2014 at 5:23 pm |
  19. rupert

    Chrissy sux

    November 8, 2014 at 5:23 pm |
  20. rupert

    Banasy sux

    November 8, 2014 at 5:24 pm |
  21. rupert

    Joey Isotta-Fraschini sux

    November 8, 2014 at 5:25 pm |
  22. rupert

    Anyone reading this comment sux

    November 8, 2014 at 5:26 pm |
  23. rupert

    I am the only one that does not suk

    November 8, 2014 at 5:27 pm |
  24. Philip

    wut up, pert.

    November 8, 2014 at 5:57 pm |
  25. Philip

    Rupert is what Grizzly Adams would have named his son if the little terd was born with curly red hair and Grizz's wife were an Indian Hindu. And the gender confused child chose to go the Chaz Bono way.

    November 8, 2014 at 5:59 pm |
  26. Dr. Silverstein

    Yeahpt. Ya got a growth pact around an artery. Stints. 8K. Cha ching.

    November 8, 2014 at 6:26 pm |
  27. chri§§y

    @ Philip my post was in response to domestic violence not to pedophilia! And not all victims of pedophiles take drugs!!! Some of us learn you have to forgive to heal but you must NEVER forget!

    November 8, 2014 at 10:01 pm |
  28. chri§§y

    But trust me @ Philip it took me a great many years after that S O B died before i could forgive him. And that may not have happened had i not had a child of my own. And i knew my continual hating of that b@st@rd was not a healthy way to be a mom!

    November 8, 2014 at 10:06 pm |

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