Less than a hundred days to go until the General Election that decides whether to continue to Obama Administration and its assault on free enterprise and U.S. sovereignty or go another uncharted course with Donald Trump, but rather than write another Donald v Hill piece, here are a few hot takes on other items in the news.
The economy continues to flounder with a paltry 1.2 percent GDP growth reported for Quarter Two after a miserable .8 percent annualized growth for Quarter One. This means that for the first half of 2016, the economy has only grown by one half of one percent after being adjusted for inflation. In order to meet the Federal Reserve’s paltry estimate of 2.4 percent growth, the second half of the year will need to accelerate to a 3.8 percent annualized growth rate for each quarter. Want to bet on whether that occurs, given the fact that the economy has not grown by even 3 percent annually for the past eleven years?
While the New York Times and others are excitedly reporting that the July jobs report showed the economy was roaring, a cursory look behind the numbers reveals a slightly different story as the decline in labor participation for those who are aged 16-64 has resulted in a net loss of 7.3 million workers in this age group since 2000. This drop in labor participation cannot be explained away by retiring Baby Boomers, but instead cuts to the heart of our nation’s economic woes as those who have dropped out are the very people who should be in their prime earning years. If those people were included in the report the unemployment rate would have been 9.3 percent rather than today’s reported 4.9 percent. Somehow that reality gets lost in the excitement over the virtually irrelevant topline unemployment numbers reported by the government.
On another front, as if torn from the pages of a 1980s newspaper, the U.S. government exchanged $400 million in mixed currencies to the Iranians for the release of hostages. The ransom payment which the Obama Administration claims wasn’t, is eerily reminiscent of Democrat charges against Ronald Reagan almost 30 years ago.
What could possibly go wrong with Obama’s scheme to fly pallets of cash (Euros and Swiss Francs because transferring U.S. dollars would have been illegal.) After all, Iran is not in the business of promoting terror, attempting to get a nuclear weapon or build alliances with cash-strapped U.S. enemies like Venezuela to provide a launch point for their missile systems to easily reach the United States. The $400 million payola is likely to end as well as other Obama foreign policy initiatives in Libya and the Russian reset which have resulted in a rise of both Islamofascism and Russia’s nationalistic reemergence threatening both their neighboring countries and what remains of world peace.
And if that 1980s replay wasn’t enough, former Nicaraguan Sandinista leader Daniel Ortega hit the news this week as well, as the now President of Nicaragua acting in the true democrat fashion that is so beloved by the left, banned the opposition party from Congress and is not allowing the major opposition party to oppose him in his upcoming election. I bet he wins big.
But fear not, with the Iranian payments, Daniel Ortega and Russia’s re-emergence as a threat in the flashback news, it would be impossible not to note the 60th birthday of Maureen McCormick who will forever be known as Marcia Brady from the 1970s series The Brady Bunch. The eternally young teen heart throb’s crashing into her seventh decade of life, for better or worse, signals the coming of the end for the baby boomer generation’s dominating influence on American culture.
And one puzzling political note, isn’t it odd that Donald Trump is being pilloried by various Democrats demanding that he drop out of the race for President for being unfit, when it is Trump who is attracting massive, overflow crowds in places like Jacksonville, Florida and Portland, Maine, while the anointed Hillary Clinton is speaking to dozens in Johnstown County, Pennsylvania and had to cancel her appearance in Cleveland, Ohio. It seems the only passion for Hillary Clinton’s candidacy is in the media which openly applauds her, and the hearts of some jilted GOP consultants, who remain resentful that Trump is not providing them with a paycheck.
And that is the weird, weird world and the news you may have missed last week while the nation argued over the wrath of a man named Khan.