“It’s The Economy, Stup — . . . oh.”
The proggies are trying hard to hide the fact that Obama’s economy was pathetic and that Trumps’ economy is already setting records that win elections.
Always nice to see Ron, isn’t it? That clip is from 1980, when Ronald Reagan ran on a promise to cure President Carter’s “economic malaise.” I put that clip up to make the point that our economy is always at the heart of our elections and at no time more so than when the economy is struggling.
When Bill Clinton ran in 1991 during a mild economic downturn, his tag line was “It’s the economy, stupid.” When Obama ran on a promise in 2008 to cure the economy than in deep crisis, he had no memorable lines, but his opponent did: “The issue of economics is not something I’ve understood as well as I should.” (Face palm.) And in 2016, when Donald Trump ran on a promise that he could restore a struggling American economy to strength, he used the phrase “Make America Great Again.”
Proggies may pretend that the only reason Trump won in 2016 was because 63 million people suddenly channeled their inner racist (IT WAS A WHITELASH, according to professional race hustler Van Jones), but the clear-eyed among them understand that Trump ran — and was in large measure elected on — the economy. Now that Trump is unleashing the U.S. economy, they are worried indeed. As I wrote months ago: “Trump, if he resuscitates the American economy, if he gives economic life back to the working class, he will be unbeatable in 2018 and 2020.”
Our economy has suffered the slings and arrows of the last two Democrat presidents. In 1992, Bill Clinton won the Presidential election after focusing like a laser on the then moribund American economy. And while the economy was good during Clinton’s tenure, it was Clinton’s social engineering of the economy that eviscerated lending standards and, with it, bond rating standards. That finally flowered into the subprime collapse of 2007, our worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.
In 2008, Obama campaigned in large part on stemming that crisis. In fact, Obama gave us a “recovery” in name only. Instead of letting the U.S. economy rebound, he spent trillions of borrowed and manufactured dollars with nothing to show for it except a doubling of the national debt.
Rather than trying to maximize job and economic growth, Obama pushed Obamacare on America, along with a host of green regulations costing the economy billions. To the extent Obama achieved job growth under his presidency, he did it two ways: One, he drove massive number of people out of the workforce, which ironically made the unemployment numbers appear much better. Two, he did create numerous jobs — but they weren’t of the high-paying variety lost in 2007. He created a slew of part-time jobs as employers split up low wage jobs to give individual employees less hours because of Obamacare.
Yes, Obama drove up the stock market, but he did that through Quantitative Easing. The rich got richer under Obama — technically keeping us out of a depression — while the middle class took it in the shorts. How bad had it gotten? This from RCP in 2016:
On Friday, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported that 2015 U.S. real GDP (RGDP) growth was 2.38%. No matter what revisions are subsequently made, 2015 will have been the tenth year in a row that RGDP growth came in at under 3.0%. The longest previous such run in U.S. economic history was only four years, and the last time that this happened was during the Great Depression (1930 – 1933).
Even worse, and this should be the defining issue of the 2016 elections, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) is now forecasting that America will never see 3.0% economic growth again. . . .
Experts, eh? The economy today is on track to post its third straight quarter of over 3% growth. These jokers are as good at forecasting as economist Paul Krugman, who told us on election night, after a dip in the stock market, “If the question is when markets will recover, a first-pass answer is never.”
On Nov. 8, the day before the 2016 election (and the Nov. 9 dip), the Dow Jones Ind. Avg. was at 18,259. Two days ago, the stock market posted at yet another record high under Trump, 24,507. Unemployment now stands at 4.1% under Trump, the best in 17 years and projected to go much lower.
And Trump has done this largely on his own. Just having him at the helm of the economy has brought back confidence.
But he has not been passive. Trump’s single greatest accomplishment in terms of the economy has been to roll back much of the worst of the regulatory overreach of the Obama administration. Running a close second, and perhaps of much greater importance in the long run, was pulling this nation out of the Paris Accords (for all the reasons listed here). Now if Congress comes through with its tax reform bill, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the economy achieve sustained 4% growth, just as Trump promised to much derision on the campaign trail.
All of this has the progressives in a bind. Their Trump madness, dialed up well over 11, is likely as not creating new Trump voters, not changing the minds of existing Trump voters. And by November 2018, the economy will be so obviously improved over the Obama years even Paul “Enron” Krugman will have to admit it. So what is the prog left to do?
Well, the other day, Obama claimed credit for the now booming economy. And I am sure by next year we will have proggie economists waterboarding the numbers until they scream in agony to show that in fact, all of the then current economic benefits flow from Obama’s horrendously incompetent economic stewardship through 2016. Even to someone out in the sticks who doesn’t understand economics, that will end up being laughable.
Robert Samuelson, writing at the Washington Post, tried a decidedly different tack — and I give him an “A” for inventiveness. Yes, he agrees, the economy is booming. Yes, he agrees, unemployment is down. And yes, he agrees, the stock market is up. But a capitalist economy works on boom and bust cycles. Trump may have us on the boom cycle now, but that just means a bust will be inevitable, so do we really want an improving economy? I was tempted not to link to such idiocy, but then I thought you might want a laugh, so feel free to follow the link.
The AP, for its part, has done a Samuelson variation. Okay, the economy may be booming under Trump, but that is just causing a spike in homelessness in California. Yeah, not kidding. The link goes to Tom Blumer’s exceptional Bizzy Blog.
I’m sure there will be other variations but we will have to wait to 2018 to find out. My bet is that the progs will do everything possible to ignore the economy. Finally, a stock tip — buy Conagra. They own the Orville Redenbacher Popcorn brand. I expect it to do particularly well next year.
Photo Credit: Based on a photo by Gage Skidmore.