By Terry Corbell
How Bad Policy and Journalists Hinder Economic Prosperity
March 1, 2017 –
The nation’s economy will strongly improve if we capitalize on lessons in common-sense economic-growth policies from two late presidents.
What two presidents? President John F. Kennedy and President Ronald Reagan.
In the early 1960s, President Kennedy cut marginal tax rates on both business and individual taxpayers.
It led to a stronger economy and higher morale for the average American worker.
Twenty years later, President Reagan achieved even better results with an annual average 4-percent economic growth. He originated the theme of “Let’s make America great again.”
President Reagan was widely ridiculed by many in Hollywood and the media, but his successes muted much of the rancor. (Having interviewed both Mr. and Mrs. Reagan on the campaign trail at different times for radio and television stations, I found them to be eloquent and personable.)
Now, to turbo-charge the economy using the theme of “Make America Great Again,” President Donald Trump promises to implement similar measures and more to grow family wage jobs and improve America’s security.
Mr. Trump wants to eliminate economic restraints with the following policies:
- Reform the tax code for individuals and corporations
- Implement a corporate repatriation of profit
- Revive the mining and manufacturing sectors
- Slash unnecessary and burdensome business regulations
- Repeal and replace the failed promises of ObamaCare
- Rebuild the U.S. infrastructure from roads to the Internet
- Eliminate the national debt and reduce spending
- Make America energy independent
- Improve national defense and secure the borders
But many people disagree about the restraints.
It’s one thing for them to oppose bad economic policies but it’s quite another when they oppose proven policies.
Ironically, economic history can and should be a great teacher.
Ostensibly, though, for opponents of President Trump, economic history isn’t a great teacher. They prefer the no-growth restraints under President Barack Obama.
In 2008, President Obama and his administration officials forecast wonderful economic results.
You might recall the Obama Administration forecast 3 percent growth in the gross domestic product in 2010, about 4 percent in 2011, more than 4 percent in 2012 and almost a 4 percent increase for 2013.
The Obama policies didn’t have any growth incentives. So Americans only got an $850-billion spending stimulus, unproductive solar-energy expenditures on companies that went bankrupt, growth in low-wage jobs, and ObamaCare with the expansion of Medicaid administered by state governments that became a huge economic drain.
ObamaCare had many failed promises and included a 3.8 percent investment tax increase, a tax on “Cadillac” insurance plans, and a tax increase on medical equipment that exacerbated health care.
In addition, it was reported in 2012 that ObamaCare had already cost the economy $27.6 billion and eliminated 30,000 jobs.
While the U.S. economy has been slowly mending, the situation remains bleak for governments at all levels.
Why? The governments – from cities to federal are dangerously in debt.
There have been other alarm bells. Liberals and media pundits ignored a critical progress report by the International Monetary Fund back on Aug 2, 2012.
That’s when Roberto Cardarelli, the head of the IMF’s North America Division said the U.S. economic recovery was tepid:
Indeed, after President Obama left office – the last GDP report of his tenure – showed weak economic growth of only 1.9 percent.
But that really wasn’t news. For each of the eight years, the Obama Administration averaged less than 2 percent economic growth.
Furthermore, there’s been deterioration in critical economic categories – living standards, labor-force participation, and wages. The average work week is only 34.4 hours.
Yet, there were no media complaints about the mediocre Obama economy. And except for authoritative economists, there was no criticism.
Now, the Trump Administration forecasts nearly a 100 percent GDP increase to 4 percent.
Investors are thrilled. His policies have led to an explosion in the stock market. Investors have pumped $3 trillion more into the market.
But political opponents and naïve media pundits continue with their sarcastic ridicule. Not only against his policies, but they incessantly ridicule the businessman-president personally.
For examples, try Googling the key phrase, Trump economic policies. You’ll see millions upon millions of search results.
On the same day as President Trump’s first address to a joint session of Congress – clearly a preemptive strike against his speech and his economic policies – the chief Washington correspondent for CNBC, John Harwood reported “Why President Trump’s agenda is in trouble”:
However, Mr. Harwood’s ethics show him to be disingenuous and unqualified to report on the Trump Administration. Why? Consider his scandalous bias that emerged in the 2016 presidential campaign.
WikiLeaks released emails between Mr. Harwood and Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta. They revealed that the CNBC journalist gave the Clinton campaign tips about her opponents. He even bragged that as a debate moderator he provoked Mr. Trump.
Earlier in May 2015, Mr. Harwood emailed Mr. Podesta warning him to be aware of Dr. Ben Carson’s candidacy who “could give you real trouble…” To explain his points about Dr. Carson, Mr. Harwood’s emails contained three videos of interviews Mr. Harwood conducted with Dr. Carson.
Other WikiLeaks’ releases revealed Mr. Harwood praised Mrs. Clinton to her campaign staff.
Mr. Harwood’s behavior and that of his employer, NBC, in tolerating his bias are shocking.
(As a former broadcast journalist who once reported on two presidential figures, such biased reporting would have crippled my career. My employers would not have tolerated any collaboration or praising of the newsmakers whom I covered.)
Of course, there have been other disingenuous reports about the Trump Administration initiatives. Little wonder why the president criticizes the media.
Under-reported support for Trump policies
Meantime, there has been very little coverage of the support for the new economic plans, including a prediction by respected JPMorgan Chase & Co. CEO Jamie Dimon:
Addressing investors in New York on Tuesday, Dimon predicted banks will lend more to small businesses, and that employers will raise wages and lure millions of people back into the job market, if the government eases rules and cuts corporate taxes. The nation’s biggest lenders are strong and poised to expand operations into more countries, he said.
“The future is very bright,” said Dimon, who is both CEO and chairman of the nation’s biggest bank. “If you have tax reform, regulatory reform, infrastructure reform, I believe you could see the United States growing much faster.” He said he joined a panel of business leaders advising the president because “the U.S. needs better policy.”
Agreed, the U.S. does need better policy. GDP at a meager 2-percent or lower growth rate is unacceptable.
Sophisticated solutions are needed. Just ask the increasingly confident investors and savvy CEOs like Mr. Dimon.
The news media must regain its former stature by adhering to honest, traditional journalistic principles. Otherwise, journalists such as Mr. Harwood and their media employers will continue to be irrelevant.
Mr. Trump has repeatedly shown he knows how to circumvent the media to connect with voters, and he is too determined to win.
The Trump reforms – removing the restraints of ObamaCare, business regulations, high individual and corporate taxes while reducing the massive deficits and budgets – must also be adopted by Congress.
Future generations of Americans deserve no less.
From the Coach’s Corner, here are related articles:
Economy: The High Public Price Tag of Manufacturing Jobs — Donald Trump’s election has prompted a surge in optimism for the economy and stock market, according to authoritative polls. But countless manufacturing workers and their families are on public assistance says a UC Berkeley study. The answers aren’t more entitlements or higher minimum wage. Here are the real solutions.
Academic Study: Rich Pay More than Their Share in Taxes — The 2016 study by the National Center for Policy Analysis reveals the current tax code is highly progressive. It’s entitled, “U.S. Inequality, Fiscal Progressivity, and Work Disincentives: An Intragenerational Accounting.”
Are We Doing Enough to Cherish Memory of 9/11 Victims? — If we really want to cherish the memory of the 9/11 victims, we’re falling far short of the goal. Why? We’re not doing our best to prevent more victims of terrorism for two reasons.
“My reading of history convinces me that most bad government has grown out of too much government.”
-John Sharp Williams
Author Terry Corbell has written innumerable online business-enhancement articles, and is a business-performance consultant and profit professional. Click here to see his management services. For a complimentary chat about your business situation or to schedule him as a speaker, consultant or author, please contact Terry.