Forgive me, but I can’t let this one fade into the ether just yet. A previous comment from Akefa stating that “the economy has only gone down since Clinton left office” , and citing “the esteemed economist Krugman’s book The Great Unraveling ” as a reference was certainly well-timed if nothing else. Had I ridden the train this morning rather than driven, I would have already read Brian Wesbury’s piece on nothing other than……the Economy. Wesbury is chief economist at GKST, and has been a voice in the wilderness for the past couple of years, pointing out the undercurrent of strength in the domestic U.S. Economy. As the numbers have steadily improved, he has picked up quite a bit of company. These few lines jumped off the page for me as I consumed a late dinner this evening:
“After growing at a 14.5% annualized rate in the first-half of 2000, business fixed investment stopped in its tracks and grew just 1% in the second half. The Clinton White House knew this was happening. A member of President Clinton’s Council of Economic Advisors (CEA), Kathryn Shaw, said in August 2001, “economic growth had started to fade in the fall of 2000.” Mr. Clinton’s CEA chairman, Joseph Stiglitz, wrote in 2002 that “the economy was slipping into recession even before Bush took office.” Al Gore said that “the economic downturn really began in March of 2000.”
Obviously, the esteemed economist Paul Krugman holds views that are in direct conflict with the very people who presided over the start of the recession, illustrating that Mr. Clinton & Co. were the beneficiaries of some very fortunate timing, and that my friend Akefa is decidedly not.