With red lights flashing nearly everywhere, the economy’s prospects look grim. Soaring inflation, crashing home sales, plunging GDP, falling real incomes. No question, the economy is a mess. So why is the Biden administration saying things are going better?
It’s not just this week’s “unexpected” 8.3% inflation jump. Or the scary plunge in stock prices, destroying trillions of dollars in household wealth in just days. It’s that the ruling party, the Democratic Party, seems utterly oblivious to the damage it’s done.
This week, President Joe Biden touted the “progress” made by his administration against inflation, just a day after the report that prices had risen 8.3% overall, and food prices by 11.4%, the fastest since 1979.
“Today’s data show more progress in bringing global inflation down in the U.S. economy,” Biden bragged. “Overall, prices have been essentially flat in our country these last two months: that is welcome news for American families, with more work still to do.”
Prices have not been “essentially flat.” They’re rising sharply, as the data clearly and unequivocally show.
But even worse, new data from the Atlanta Federal Reserve’s GDPNow data set show the economy is clearly tanking. GDPNow tells you what the economy has done so far in the quarter. With just over two weeks to go, the GDPNow growth estimate — based on real numbers, not future estimates — is 0.5% annual growth for the third quarter, down from 1.3% just two weeks ago.
That means incoming data are much weaker than anticipated. We’re just one or two “unexpectedly weak” economic reports away from shrinking for a third-straight quarter.
Don’t worry. If it happens, the Biden administration and its shills in the media will again deny the economy’s in recession. Or blame Donald Trump.
They did it before. In July, the Democrat-media axis simply denied a recession existed, despite the well-established rule that two quarters of GDP decline equals a recession.
And it took its cue from the Biden administration itself.
We credit the Washington Post for at least reporting that while a two-quarter GDP drop is “something that is generally understood to mean a recession … the Biden administration is seeking to preempt it.”
Once apprised of the White House’s stance, left-leaning columnists took up the cause, writing impassioned denials that a two-quarter drop in GDP means a recession.
Biden even sent his Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen out to defend his record.
“Even if that (GDP) number is negative, we are not in a recession now,” Yellen told NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “And I would, you know, warn that we should be not characterizing that as a recession.”
“Warn”? Message received. But here’s another warning: The Biden administration is continuing down the road to ruin for the U.S. economy.
Economist and former top White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow pithily summed up Biden’s disaster in a recent column:
You generated $5 trillion in new deficits, according to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. You put an end to fossil-fuel permitting and leasing and you’ve implemented at least $200 billion of new regulations, roughly 40 times what President Trump imposed.
It’s a set of actions that has literally strangled business enterprise. Meanwhile, besides your tax and regulatory prosperity killers, your inflation scourge has given average working Americans a 3.4% wage cut over the past year.
Around the kitchen table, families are talking about a 16% hike in electricity prices, a 33% jump in natural gas services, and a 11.4% spike in groceries. Families are still looking for baby formula on store shelves.
And that’s just a partial indictment (a popular word these days among Democrats) of the Biden economic disaster.
Our once mighty position as the world’s most powerful and innovative economy is eroding before our very eyes. No surprise, then, that the Fraser Institute’s recent annual Survey of Economic Freedom around the world showed the U.S. plunging to its lowest reading since the stagflationary Carter era.
As the American Institute for Economic Research commented:
The United States appears to be entering the same economic malaise of bloated bureaucracy, excessive taxation, and spiraling inflation that typified the Carter years. Back then we had to wait in line, sometimes for hours, just to buy gas. Now we have rolling blackouts and energy crises in some states, impending electric vehicle mandates, perpetual budget-busting deficits that were unheard of even two decades ago, and – yes – a return of inflation that tops 8% for the year. Perhaps the most telling fact of all is that our elected officials and policymakers haven’t a clue how to reverse these trends. Indeed, they are still feeding them.
Damning stuff. Making things worse, recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that in 2021 Americans on average spent more on taxes ($16,729.73) than they did for food, clothing and health care combined ($15,495.28). We’re paying top-dollar for incompetence.
From steady, consistent growth of 2.5% a year, stock market gains of nearly 35%, and low inflation averaging around 2% during the Trump years, we have descended to this economic hell, created by an incompetent president and his team that brags about his terrible performance.
The very term “Bidenomics” is a travesty. Want your old economy back? Change who’s in charge, starting in this November’s midterm elections.
— Written by the I&I Editorial Board