You Can and Should Argue With Results

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Stephen Moore, a senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation has, in all seriousness, suggested that Donald Trump deserves a Nobel Prize in economics. The article is even more laughable than the idea. Moore starts out well enough, citing economic good news:

Image via Wikipedia.
Voters sure were. It turns out Americans outside the beltway weren't so enthralled with the New World Order or the anemic Obama economic program that is being dismantled.

And what is the result of all this "chaos" and "mayhem" in the White House that the media is in such a frenzy about? Well, as we learned last week, we now have the lowest number of American workers on unemployment insurance since Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, the biggest manufacturing boom in 14 years, the lowest black unemployment rate ever recorded, and an economy that is growing at 4.4 percent this quarter, on top of 4.2 percent growth last quarter.
I'm on board with dismantling onerous regulations and "climate change"-inspired looting. But that's just one part of what the President has done. I say "what the President has done" rather than "the President's program" for a reason: His actions are not guided by any kind of uniform principle, such as the idea that the government exists solely to protect individual rights. Ironically, Moore -- ignorantly or cynically -- drops a big hint later on as to exactly why his idea is farcical:
Yes, there is a bit of chaos and disorder at the White House. Yes, some of the characters that Trump has hired had no business being anywhere near 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. By contrast, Obama had an orderly and statesmanlike White House, and he hired a cadre of highly respected and well-intended people. Yet all of this still produced the worst recovery from a recession since the Great Depression.
Great. With Trump having not implemented his full agenda so far, the economy isn't quite so anemic any more. But if we're going to bring up the Great Depression, we might do to remember the role of tariffs in bringing it on. Trump does not know or care that trade barriers are simply another form of the government improperly regulating the economy. The "boom" we are seeing doesn't make Trump a genius: It's an indication that he should do more of the same, but that means dropping the contradictory part of his agenda.

It is understandable that many Americans, seeing the economy less sick under Trump than under Obama might mistake the man for a doctor. They're dangerously half-right: Trump has stopped Obama's method of bloodletting. But he won't let the patient recover and he's readying his own set of leeches already. In the meantime, someone who should know better is pretending what he's about to do is a great idea based on improvement during a temporary reprieve. What Trump has done so far has helped for a reason. Sadly, it's a reason he clearly doesn't understand. Rather than using past results to mask future mistakes, Moore should look at why we have good results, and how that reason indicates we need Trump to change his mind about trade -- or some of us need to change our own minds about Trump.

-- CAV

No comments: