Tuesday tidbits (in mid-September, 2022)

Being in an alliterative state of mind, here are a few Tuesday tidbits for tasting. In no particular order:

  • I read where Wisconsin Republican Senator Ron Johnson is having trouble with his reelection campaign, as well he should. Apparently, independents like myself have soured on the guy, and he is in a toss-up with Lt. Governor Mandela Barnes. To be frank, many Republicans did not want Johnson to run again (his age), but for a different reason than I have. He is such an overt supporter of the former president, many Republicans on committees he chaired have openly disagreed with his inane assertions.
  • I continue to read some folks are voting Republican for economic reasons, but they should look at historical data. Here is an easy example to find – under which White Houses have more jobs been created, Democrat or Republicans (note there have been 13 terms apiece)? The answer is under Democrats, and it is not even close. Even Democrats tend to miss this question. The economy and stock market have done better as well. Those who say the last former president did great with the economy, should note that he inherited an economy in its 91st consecutive month of economic growth, a more than doubled stock market and six consecutive years of 2+ million per annum job growth. Note Obama inherited a recession from George W. Bush.
  • I should note that presidents and legislators get too much credit and blame for the economy. They do provide some headwinds and tailwinds, but the economy is bigger than their jobs. The inflation we are seeing today has a lot to do with an inadequate supply chain. If you remember your economic graphs, when supply is low, prices go up. The pandemic hurt a great deal. To me, the tariffs imposed by the previous president and continued under the current one have upset our supply chains, where businesses had to find other sources of goods that they likely continued. I would add the Russian invasion of Ukraine has fueled fossil fuel price increases along with the continued disruption of a poorly planned and executed Brexit which has an echo effect.
  • I should also caution my British friends they are in for an even rockier road with new Prime Minister Liz Truss’ infatuation with trickle-down economics, which has been proven in five studies to have failed. The state of Kansas recently had a huge failure with this theory and almost went bankrupt before it was overturned. Per Mother Jones, “After years of budgetary ruin, Kansas’ experiment in trickle-down economics is finally coming to a close. Late Tuesday night, the state Legislature voted overwhelmingly to override a veto from Gov. Sam Brownback and increase a slew of taxes in the state.” Trickle-down economics is not the best of names, but it is better than what it was called in the late 1890s – the “Horse and sparrow theory,” meaning what you feed the horse (the wealthy) is excreted to feed the sparrows (everyone else).

16 thoughts on “Tuesday tidbits (in mid-September, 2022)

  1. Your point about Liz Truss is well made, but that isn’t the only one of her policies which is likely to damage the country. In the words of one of my late Mum’s favourite phrases: “if she had a brain she’d be dangerous.”

    • Clive, I don’t know enough about her yet to draw any conclusions. Of course, we have several men and women here that your mother’s assessment would be on point. Keith

      • Just Google ‘Liz Truss cheese’ and you’ll get an idea of how useless she is. I think a great many politicians would fit Mum’s description 😊

      • Clive, it is akin to our last president not knowing that many foreign companies employ American workers as they make things here rather than ship them. As for the things cited could the UK even support its own demand in cheese, pears and apples? Keith

      • That’s a good comparison: I think they might be a good intellectual match. It just depends which of them is using the communal brain cell at any given time. Short answer to your question: no. Longer answer, it would be easy to fact check that before putting it into a jingoistic speech which might satisfy the doddery old farts in the Tory party but just makes everyone else laugh at her stupidity. And that manic, self-satisfied smirk is something to behold!

  2. I think everywhere the governments are blamed for the bad economic situation. People need to see that in the past two years quite a few global problems have escalated. Maybe that is also why some leaders are getting nuts and keeping their people small just to prevent more problems for them. However, we all are sitting in the same boat, pandemic, climate change, war… it affects everyone!

    • Erika, true. Many of the reasons I cite for inflation are global concerns, so they are felt more universally. Blaming governments is easy to do, but is not always accurate or complete. One factor I did not mention is some companies take advantage of inflation and charge even more than is justified. Prices are upward elastic and downward inelastic, meaning companies increase prices faster than they drop them. Why? Because they can. Always remember the companies who took advantage of you and shop elsewhere. Keith

      • Oh, yes, that’s unfortunately a negative side effect. Such “black sheep” try to abuse the system systematically. But they are not those who have a longer business history. Those are the ones people feel comfortable and treated fairly.

      • Well said, Erika. If there was a hurricane that landed, people might even call some of this price gouging. People need to remember folks like this.

  3. No matter what evidence you can show people, most will blame a bad economy on the party in charge. A good economy? If it is your party in charge, they get the credit. If it’s the other party, then the good economy happens despite, not because of, their policies.

    Liz Truss may make some Britian’s yearn for Boris Johnson again :O

    • Janis, and to some it matters not what the real numbers are. If you don’t like them make them up. Not intending to pick only on Trump, but he said during the 2016 campaign the unemployment rate was an increasing number. He started at 30%, then said 40% and finished at 42%. When he took office it was miraculously back to where it was all along – 5%. Folks look what I did in one day! If it had been at 42%, we would have been in a severe depression. Keith

    • Nan, agreed. When Mitt Romney ran for president in 2012, it was reported that Senator Mitch McConnell had a report from the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service buried in the late summer, 2012. Why did he do that? – the report said Trickle-down economics does not work, an approach touted by Romney. Keith

    • True. But, they should not take too much credit when it is good either. Yet, the same could be said for most investment advisors, as many benefit from rising seas lifting all boats.

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