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Mr. McCain’s growth prescriptions are all about lowing taxes and boosting investment capital for new business formation and expansion. Mr. Obama, on the other hand, doesn’t think or talk in terms of venture capital or capital investment, the bodybuilders of a thriving economy.

Mr. McCain’s economic arsenal calls for making the tax cuts permanent, doubling the personal exemption for dependents, cutting the 35 percent corporate tax rate to 25 percent, and repealing the alternative minimum tax that is squeezing the middle-class with higher tax rates.

Mr. Obama’s jobs agenda contains no broadscale tax incentives to boost businesses and hiring. Instead, it is loaded with more federal spending for basic research and for “clean technologies” and “renewable energy” that he says will “create high-paying jobs.” Don’t hold your breath. Indeed, he would raise the capital-gains tax on investors and push the top tax rate to nearly 40 percent, punishing the sector that is the wellspring of capital formation, economic opportunity and growth.

Mr. McCain says you can’t have a healthy capitalist economy without capital. Mr. Obama says, “Give me the capital and I’ll do the investing.”

Donald Lambro, chief political correspondent of The Washington Times, is a nationally syndicated columnist.