I agree with you, but it feels like it’s two different but related things. The economy is doing well in that businesses are doing well. Corporations are raking in profits. Productivity is up. Unemployment is at its floor.
Like any GOP economy in my lifetime, it’s only the upper crust that sees the benefits, though. And in the long term I don’t think that’s sustainable at all for the country. I don’t think that takes away from the fact that the economy is strong right now, though.
That’s a really excellent point. In the past we’ve been able to judge the economic security of most Americans by the high level numbers that gauge the overall health of the economy. But as the chasm between the rich elites and the rest of Americans grows ever wider, it may be entirely possible for the bottom 50% of Americans to really be feeling economic pain while the gauge still shows green overall. In general a healthy economy almost guarantees an elected president a second term because people don’t like to rock the boat when things are going well. But if there’s a lot of pain that isn’t showing up in the high level numbers then we could see strong voter turnout and a definite “vote the bums out” mentality in 2018.
I think the point is that you wouldn’t see the effect of a poor economy on polling numbers until it was already bad, not when something bad was on the horizon. The majority of voters simply aren’t savvy enough to anticipate what lies ahead. So, for purposes of the poll, if the numbers are that unfavorable BEFORE the shit hits the fan (even though you know the shit is inbound) it suggests that those numbers will look even worse after.
This is an excellent point. And I think the inverse (I’m probably not using that word correctly, but you can see where I’m going) is true. That somebody, say a Democrat, can work like crazy to get an economy that was on-the-brink going, and then somebody else, say a current president, can come in and take credit for that work.
The reason I say the economy is strong, is because we are basically at full employment, and consumer confidence is quite high. Those things are key elements of economic strength. Right now, folks are generally doing better than they were say, 5 years ago. We are at the end of a very long decade of fairly steady, albeit slowish, economic growth.
But it’s that duration that makes me think it’s going to crack. Ten years is a long time without a recession of some sort. We are due.
But right now? Unemployment is extremely low, and that alone is one of the most important aspects of the economy. Having a job is a really key element to someone’s life. And generally, folks think they will have a job in the future and are buying stuff.
But to the original point, this is why it’s so nuts that people think the country is headed in the wrong direction.
I do not recall folks having that kind of opinion about the country while experiencing such a strong economy.
When people say ‘the economy,’ they usually mean the DJIA, Unemployment or GDP. That works well for investors.
I don’t think that’s how average people think about ‘the economy.’ For a working class person, what matters is take home pay, big costs (e.g, healthcare, housing, tuition), and how much savings they have. I’m sure there’s a measure for this, but I don’t know what it is. Maybe Consumer Confidence?
Yeah, the reign of GWB is a good example. Sure, the stock market recovered after 9/11, but it never really did for the majority of Americans. Most Americans were treading water and best, then got torpedoed again in the housing crash.
I know the few years have seen small movement in wages, but the average American has a lot of ground to make up and is still behind the curve. And this is before the next crash/recession/whatever hits and dunks us all again.
But as the wealthy get exponentially more wealthy, it’ll raise up the net value of the average American, even if the median American drops into the basement. Clearly that’s the measuring stick that Trump & friends use for American success.
Interestingly, Australia hasn’t had an official recession since 1991. Some theory that the central bank there does a better job managing the money supply. It may be that the majority of recessions are due to mistakes by the central bank.
I’m afraid that ultimately this kind of back-and-forth reads as you hedging your bets. My point is that the coming recession isn’t because it’s the magical time and now we are somehow “due” for a recession, but that the current administration’s policies are causing it. Because, well, they have little to lose and the Democrats will clean it up anyway. As has been the pattern. For decades. This is unarguable.
No. They aren’t. And you prove this point by saying…
I don’t doubt you are talking in good faith. The problem here is that the economy relies a lot upon the trust that the people buying things have in the people who are running the economy. And most of the people in this country know that the guy running things is inherently untrustworthy. He’s a liar. A cheat. A tax-fraud. We all know this. These things are not up for debate. He contradicts himself within his own sentences. So consumers have a problem with that, even if this is in a seeping sort-of subconscious way.