Friday, March 8, 2019

Well here we go - Today's economic report from the circling drain

With today's abysmal jobs number coming in at 20,000 new jobs, a tenth of what was projected, we find ourselves caught in the whirlpool of The Orange Moron's incompetence meeting the confluence of economic down trends. The straw that the administration is trying to cling to is a significant jump in hourly wages but there is absolutely nothing to maintain a trend of 'rising wages' in a labor union free economy. Wages are so low that offering slightly higher pay to attract people to change jobs is not going to calm the raging river of economic collapse. The average hourly wage today is roughly equal to the minimum wage paid in 1968 and those weren't great wages back then.

The next biggest problem that this country has is its trade deficit and Trump has managed to drive that to an all time record high. Nobody is going to invest in making things in the US because they know Trump's tariffs are not permanent and will only last until he gets what he wants. With China, Trump wants their cash in Trump's pocket, he's already gotten $500 million funneled into Trump development in Malaysia but it's not clear if China is willing to make him into a real billionaire or if they'll simply wait him out. It's not that they can't bribe him, they don't have that pesky 'rule of law' problem that our other major trading partners must deal with. But destroying the US is their ultimate goal and they may just let Trump do it for them.

At a joint White House photo op with the Chinese Vice President announcing progress in trade talks, Trump embarrassed himself by saying that the memorandums of understanding (MOU) that they were showcasing were not to his liking "because a MOU didn't mean anything". The US trade negotiator couldn't help himself and interrupted to correct Trump by pointing out that the MOU was very detailed, legally binding like any contract and that they are what trade deals are based on. Trump doesn't actually know anything about the Art of the Deal, his book on the subject was ghost written. Not accepting any correction from an underling he gave the hapless trade expert a tongue lashing repeating his earlier nonsense. The stoic Chinese responded by laughing out loud in Trump's face. He doubtless took it as a compliment.  

We are living in those interesting times the Chinese curse refers to.