Economist Stephen Moore detailed a dismal look at where the global economy stands during a panel discussion Wednesday.
Moore has written on economics for roughly three decades including as the chief economist at The Heritage Foundation. He warned during the panel discussion that ongoing slow economic growth is causing serious problems domestically and globally. Moore argued that things can turnaround through increased economic freedom.
“This has been the slowest recovery we’ve had from a recession since the Great Depression,” Moore stated. “In my opinion the business sector right now is in what I call a soft recession. These are dangerous times and the economy is way under performing.”
Heritage hosted the panel discussion to correspond with its new report on global economics. The report also advocates that policymakers start moving toward increased economic freedom.
Moore notes the economy grew by only one percent over the past six months. Additionally, businesses have been hesitant to grow and invest with current conditions. He asserts that taking a more free-market approach resulted in great prosperity from 1980 to 2005. But he believes those ideas are losing favor with many people.
“We saw half of American voters in the Democratic Party vote for a socialist,” Moore also noted. “That tells you a lot about the fact some of the ideas we’re talking about have lost favor. And its a distressing thing to see because as these ideas lose favor people will become poorer.”
President Barack Obama was elected into office during of a severe economic downturn now known as the Great Recession. Some economists have predicted the United States will continue its slow recovery for the next 25 years. Moore counters that its not too late for countries to bounce back through policy reform.
“In my opinion it wouldn’t be too hard to get the United States and these other countries to start growing again at a very rapid pace,” Moore noted. “We could grow at four percent for five years. Four percent for five years. That’s like adding another Texas onto the U.S. economy.”
The recession was sparked by the subprime mortgage crisis and the financial crisis of 2007. The president blamed the slow recovery on Republicans March 4 while praising the few successes on his agenda. Moore is confident that if the United States starts changing its policies, the rest of the world will follow.
“I do think if the United States starts getting these things right, they will spread like a virus around the world,” Moore said. “You’ll have another 25 year period of unbelievable prosperity.”
The president has often touted his economic recovery as a success because unemployment is around pre-recession levels. His analysis, however, overlooks that the labor force participation rate has been in a sharp decline since 2008.