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President Trump ran on a campaign of helping the average American worker. I’m 100% behind that. If there is anything not making America great again, it’s the deterioration of the middle class. The situation had become so acute and obvious by the time of the last presidential election that both parties raised the issue. That was a first in my lifetime.
It is in that context that I find this government shutdown so deplorable. The current administration has already shown what is, at the very least, questionable judgment when it comes to trade policy and tax cuts. Indeed, the former actually appears to be costing jobs while the latter clearly makes the income disparity that both parties openly denounced even worse.
So how does furloughing 800,000 government workers help?
I think you know the answer to that question already. First and foremost, there isn’t an immigration crisis. By all accounts, the number of illegals in the country has fallen. Second, even if there were—and there isn’t—what do we gain by holding a gun to the heads of government workers? Is there any question about who is bearing the real burden here? We don’t need a fancy econometric model to figure that one out. And it’s not just those who were furloughed who are suffering, but also the employees and owners of every grocery they frequented, every department store at which they shopped, and every restaurant where they dined. Merry Christmas.
It’s very, very simple, and no doubt the most damaging thing the administration has done so far to the American worker. It’s also worth noting that the strong growth we have experienced of late was attributable in part to government spending:
Click on the link above and slide the slider back to the end of the last recession and see how the government contribution to GDP was actually a net drag over most of the Obama years (it’s the purple bit–if it’s below the line, that’s bad!). Economists had already pointed to this as a problem and it was something the Trump administration had been doing right. Until now.
Long story short: holding the American worker hostage, particularly over a trumped up issue, is unconscionable. It’s not helping anyone. Let’s hope for all our sake it ends soon.
January 8, 2019 at 04:04PM
Forbes – Entrepreneurs