Closing Arguments – Part One

For the next three days I intend to give you my closing arguments on why not to vote for Donald Trump or any of his Republican sycophants. Today and tomorrow’s articles will be based on statistics. Tuesday’s will be a personal plea. If you are already among the “convinced” and/or have already voted perhaps these articles will help you persuade other voters. In any event, please come along and let’s explore.

The Economy

It is an old wives’ tale that the Republicans are better for the economy. Let’s look at “recent history”. The Coolidge and Hoover administrations brought us the Great Depression. The George W. Bush administration brought us the Great Recession. Trump keeps proclaiming that until the pandemic he brought us the greatest economy in American history. Like much of what Trump says that is simply not true. Is that sufficient myth busting?

Here are some real numbers to consider.

Thursday the last report of weekly new unemployment claims came out at a bit over 750,000. While that is the best number in months remember that before the Trump Depression the average weekly new unemployment claim number was about 250,000 or one-third of Trump’s great number. On net we are still about 10 or 11 million jobs short of where we were in February.

The best economic news for Trump was the release of the third quarter GDP growth of 7.4%. On the surface that is very good. Again, let’s put that in perspective. That same measure in the second quarter was down 9%. Demand in the American economy is 70% consumer demand and Disposable Personal Income dropped by 4.4% in the third quarter. Where is the future upside in that?   Winter is coming and with it increased fuel costs for most households. I am finding it difficult to predict an economic uptick in the near-term future.

Oh, and one last thing on the economy. When evaluating the second and third quarters remember that most Americans received their stimulus checks well into the second quarter. Do you think that may have spurred spending and temporarily kept a few wolves away from the doors?

What about the market and my 401K?

The above is a question we heard from a lot of voters who are considering voting for Trump. Let’s put a few things in perspective.

The stock market is not the economy. Basically it is a rich boys’ legal gambling casino. (Here is a scary thought: other than Trump can you think of anyone who went broke in the casino business on multiple occasions? For that matter have you ever met a bookie who was broke?) The top 10% of Americans own 84% of the shares held by Americans. While your 401K may be important to you; you are an extremely small player at the casino known as the stock market.

Theoretically the value of the companies is the underlying value of the stocks. If Trump stays in control the crash is inevitable. Under Trump America has already bailed out the economy to the tune of at least $4.5 trillion. In what illusion is that sustainable? Despite that “economic stimulus” the economy is in huge trouble. Most Americans are very anxiously awaiting a second round of stimulus checks.


Despite nearly ten months to work on the problem America is at the beginning of a third wave and the base is larger than ever. The Trump administration has failed to protect its citizens or even make much progress in that direction.

I have been monitoring what I feel is one of, if not the, best leading indicator: the 14 day rolling average of new cases. As of October 28th it stood at +42%. That date we crossed the 90,000 new daily cases mark for the first time.

By the time you read this we will have experienced more than 230,000 deaths due to the disease. As serious as COVID-19 is, fortunately not everyone dies but last week we passed the 9 million mark in infections. We are far from knowing the total extent of long term and possibly permanent damage the disease causes to the bodies of those who survive it.

Trump has proven himself to be incompetent but where is the outcry from elected Republicans? This just proves my adage that voting for a Republican may be hazardous to your health. Trump contends that we are turning the corner. If that is true it must be a corner on the highway to Hell.

That’s enough for today. In fact it should be enough to scare anyone who is not willfully ignorant let alone convince them not vote for Trump or his boys. (Trump definitely has a problem with women but that is a subject to be explored another day.)

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