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Letter to the Editor: Look past the surface on economic indicators

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Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Judith Mesko makes some points in her recent letter to the Telegram, however, she also makes the classic mistake of missing the forest due to her concentration on a few trees. What I mean by that is that she has cherry-picked some statistics to quote which appear to make the case that Obama actually experienced economic success during his administration when I would argue that many other measurements absolutely belie that position.

For instance, during his tenure food stamp participation soared, as did student loans; money printing increased at a significant rate; health insurance premiums ballooned; home ownership declined in a substantial way; labor force participation plunged; worker’s share of the economy decreased significantly; median family income plummeted and real worker wages were basically stagnant. I don’t know how Ms. Mesko feels about these markers but they represent to me a poor economy struggling to stay afloat while increasing the utilization of entitlements in a major way. All of this created a huge uptick in the national debt which is still being felt today and, and demonstrates quite clearly how a healthy economy is not supposed to function.

All of these have improved under Trump except medical insurance premiums, as political opposition prevented him from doing anything to ameliorate that situation. An average of 1.1 million jobs per year were created during Obama’s eight years, with five government jobs created for every 1 manufacturing job. An average of 2.5 million jobs per year have been created during Trump’s two and a half years with two manufacturing jobs created for every one government job. Wouldn’t taxpayers fare better with less government job dependency?

In addition to these factors, Obama ordered thousands of repressive regulations and fees which restrained and throttled businesses (especially small businesses) in a way never seen before in this country. These harbingers of a socialistic economic system have been negated to some extent by the president as he has rescinded a very large portion of these, and that is reflected in an ever-improving GDP.

One thing is certain, however, and that is if a Democrat is elected in 2020, you can count on globalization and open borders policies negating any gains we may have made to date, and soon everybody will be working for the government in one form or another. Oh boy.

Paul Duffy

Rocky Mount