The word on the street is that Donald Trump is claiming to have built a booming economy. He says that before the pandemic, we had the best economy in the history of the world. There is no rhetorical version of the eye roll, but if there was it would be right here. This is just another part of the lies spread by politicians. The simple yet inconvenient fact of the matter is that the economy is garbage, and it has been for decades. Sure they flaunt low unemployment and rising stock markets, but when has that ever effected you. Economies are complicated, and their holistic health can’t be judged by two numbers. It takes a little nuance. In the interest of full disclosure, I am not an economist, but I have a passable education and no big government agenda, so I’ll lay out some easy to understand reasons why the Trump economy should be shoved back up from where it came from.
1) We Have No Idea What the Unemployment Rate is.
Let’s start with a riddle. What’s the current unemployment rate? Is it 5%, 8%, 9%? It’s 10.5%, right? That’s the answer you get from Bureau of Labor Statistics. According to the government and the news, the unemployment rate is 10.5%. That’s bad but manageable. The only problem is that number is a deliberate mislead. The unemployment rate doesn’t account for two major pockets of unemployed people: the hopeless (people who have given up on working) and the forgotten (people who don’t have the skills to be able to compete). There are currently millions of people with no job, who aren’t accounted for in the unemployment rate. The homeless, the disabled, that dude that has been sleeping on your neighbors couch for two years are all left out of the equation, and we have no way of finding out the actual number.
2) Businesses Need Corporate Welfare
We bailed out the airline industry, we bailed out the car industry, we bailed out the banks. We got so good at bailing out industry, that the adult film world asked for a bailout. American industry can’t stay above water when times get tough. If a business can’t stay open because of a market decline, then they are a bad business. They’re meant to fail. It doesn’t matter how many industrial jobs are brought back the States. If they can’t hold up in a recession, they do us very little good.
3) The American People Needed a Stimulus
Normally, you should keep a bout 3-6 months worth of cash in savings to pay your bills during an emergency. When Covid hit, personal finance took a dump. People couldn’t pay their rent, buy groceries, and keep the lights on. The government had to bolster unemployment benefits, defer student loans, and send out cash checks. The average American can not afford to save. When the large majority of workers can’t save money, you don’t have an individual problem you have a societal problem. Tax rates and the debt system keep Americans from being fiscally responsible.
4) Our Economy is Based on Credit and Debt
Free markets are based on a plus sum game and accrual of wealth. Our economy is all based on credit. People who succeed take out debt, spend the debt on assets. Then, they manage to stay above water long enough to pay off the debt. This will give most a middle class life. It will make a few people moderately wealthy, and will put a lot of people in the poor house. It’s very difficult to be rich by modern standards. The government encourages loans and taxes you just enough to keep you in your place, but not fully break you. The middle class never become investors, and the poor never become middle class.
5) Trump Loves to Spend Other People’s Money
If you think Obama spent a lot of money, wait til you hear about this new guy. Obama added about $9 trillion dollars to National debt over the course of 8 years. If Trump passes his new $1.8 trillion stimulus package, he would have raised the debt $8.9 trillion in half the time. If he’s elected to another term, he will at least double the spending. This all means that fiscal conservatives are full of crap.