The jobs report for May, released last Friday, was not only unimpressive but could be construed as worrisome. The economy added an anemic 75,000 jobs instead of an expected gain of 180,000, and previous reports for March and April were reduced by 75,000 jobs. “It’s time to start worrying about the economy,” The Washington Post tells us. But is it?
The Post does paint a disconcerting picture of fewer job openings, slower wage growth, and lackluster progress for people “in the prime of their working years,” all while there’s a European debt crisis and the Chinese economy is slowing down. Over all of it, we’re told, looms “Trump’s trade war.”
This doesn’t quite sink to the level of fake news, but the Post is most definitely regurgitating the Democratic National Committee’s talking points. Democrats’ best hope for retaking the White House in 2020 is a recession, and they’re pushing for one in every way they can.
A few points about trade. It is true that tariffs hurt some sectors of the economy while arguably aiding others. It is also true that many Republicans — and even more so the conservative commentariat — are (accurately) warning about the cost of President Donald Trump’s tariffs. Trump called himself “the Tariff Man,” and he generally advocates tariffs as sound trade policy. “Tariffs are a beautiful thing when you are the piggy bank,” he insisted today. GOP orthodoxy for decades has been just the opposite, and many Republicans are distancing themselves from Trump’s tariffs both as genuine disagreement and as political cover when they hear from constituents hurt by those tariffs. It’s interesting that Trump isn’t blowing that political cover with Twitter tirades, but there’s no question he’s upsetting the status quo apple cart.
Oh, and by the way, Trump didn’t start this trade war — China did decades ago. Whether his chosen tool will rectify the problem remains to be seen, but he’s at least confronting Beijing’s Red leaders, which is something no one else in Washington was willing to do.
Finally, the economy is all about confidence. Tax cuts and deregulation vastly improved confidence for businesses and consumers, while tariff fights — particularly as portrayed by the media — depress that confidence. It’s almost impossible for the short-attention-span, 24/7-news-cycle crowd to maintain a strategic perspective about the long-running economic issues at play here, but the American economy is quite resilient. The problems didn’t manifest overnight and they won’t be fixed that quickly either. ~The Patriot Post