By the numbers, and especially on the basis of total change overall (from net negatives to net positives), the Obama years slay the Trump years, so far. But it is true that Trump has continued the recovery, albeit slowly – like during Obama – such that, over time, with the benefit of one positive on top of another, the positives in the U.S. economy really added up.
However, the negatives under the Trump administration has, too. The “Trump Slump” in trade, tourism and other key industries, which has now hobbled the global economy as it faces a dire health, humanitarian and economic threat from the Black Swan COVID-19 coronavirus, will be Trump’s to own, and own alone. Except that that buck never stops with Trump. Always someone else’s fault. Always.
Yesterday morning, Barack Obama published a tweet marking an important anniversary. Alongside an image of a bill bearing his signature, the former president wrote, “Eleven years ago today, near the bottom of the worst recession in generations, I signed the Recovery Act, paving the way for more than a decade of economic growth and the longest streak of job creation in American history.” The Democrat’s message had the benefit of being true. Roughly a month into his presidency, with the economy falling off a cliff and the nation hemorrhaging jobs, Obama signed into law an economic stimulus package, which Republicans said would never work. Almost immediately, the employment landscape improved; the Great Recession gave way to a recovery; and the economy hasn’t stopped growing or adding jobs since. That’s not opinion or spin; it’s just what happened. Obama’s successor, however, still desperate for credit for a recovery he did not create, was unimpressed with the tweet. Last night, Donald Trump published one of his own . “Did you hear the latest con job? President Obama is now trying to take credit for the Economic Boom taking place under the Trump Administration. He had the WEAKEST recovery since the Great Depression, despite Zero Fed Rate & MASSIVE quantitative easing. NOW, best jobs numbers ever.” I can appreciate why Trump is sensitive about this. He’s based his entire presidency — and re-election campaign — on the idea that he’s singlehandedly responsible for creating an economic nirvana unlike any ever witnessed by […]