Mitch McConnell studies history and reaches the conclusion that we should hope for a German campaign of world conquest:
“But one of the good things about reading history is you learn a good deal. And, we know for sure that the big spending programs of the New Deal did not work. In 1940, unemployment was still 15%. And, it’s widely agreed among economists, that what got us out of the doldrums that we were in during the Depression was the beginning of World War II.”
To be precise, the historical record shows that throughout FDR’s first term, the country was on a path to recovery—albeit from a very low point. Then there was a recession-within-a-depression associated with efforts to return to McConnell-style policies of fiscal restraint. By 1940, things were much better than they had been in 1932. But still, as he says, not very good. Thus far we don’t have a very solid case against stimulus spending. And now things get worse. The conclusion McConnell wants is that “big spending programs” couldn’t help fight the Depression. But World War II was, among other things, a huge spending program. At the moment, however, we’re fortunate not to be in a position where there’s a powerful wehrmacht that needs fighting. So we can try to direct our recovery-oriented spending at useful civilian projects that will improve the country’s infrastructure or health or education rather than on tanks and bombs.