The inability of the Republican Party to come up with any new ideas regarding economic policy, despite past failures and current changing circumstances (like the deepest sustained recession since the Great Depression), is truly remarkable. This has been nicely analyzed by Mike Konczal at Next New Deal. As he shows, “Romney's five-point plan to address the specific aspects of our current jobs crisis recycles, nearly word for word, plans from far different economic times.” The five points are exactly what was proposed by Bush in 2004 and 2006, and by McCain in 2008. Konczal numbers the five points by Romney below:
 First, by 2020, North America will be energy independent by taking full advantage of our oil and coal and gas and nuclear and renewables.
 Second, we will give our fellow citizens the skills they need for the jobs of today and the careers of tomorrow. When it comes to the school your child will attend, every parent should have a choice, and every child should have a chance.
 Third, we will make trade work for America by forging new trade agreements. And when nations cheat in trade, there will be unmistakable consequences.
 Fourth, to assure every entrepreneur and every job creator that their investments in America will not vanish as have those in Greece, we will cut the deficit and put America on track to a balanced budget.
 And fifth, we will champion SMALL businesses, America’s engine of job growth. That means reducing taxes on business, not raising them. It means simplifying and modernizing the regulations that hurt small business the most. And it means that we must rein in the skyrocketing cost of healthcare by repealing and replacing Obamacare.
See how these are essentially identical to earlier years here.
None of this suggests that the Democrats have their economic policies where they should be given the severe crisis of US capitalism. More on that in a subsequent post.