Friday, June 30

Tennis With the Net Down

James S. Robbins, on Da Corner:
Re: Krugman's Cat
It's worth pointing out that the average GDP growth for the first 21 quarters of the Clinton Administration was 3.5%, and for the same period in the current administration it is 2.8%. Measuring since 9/11 (to remove the attack from the equation) it is 3.3%. And this while fighting a war, and without a stock market bubble built on fantasy internet stocks.
Posted at 5:01 PM

It's also worth pointing out that the Bush administration number is 2.75, and rounded up or no, that's still less than 3.5. A lot less.

It's also worth noting that measuring since 9/11 does not "remove the attack from the equation". It removes the period before the attack from the equation. In fact the GDP bottomed out in the last quarter of 2001 and rose for a year thereafter.

Perhaps now is a good time to mention that fighting a war tends to be a fairly positive thing for the economy, assuming you survive to take part in it, seeing as how it involves building things here and sending them overseas to get blown up, after which you build more. That's a pretty simple-minded take on the matter, but simple-minded is justified under the circumstances.

And we might observe here that a stock market bubble, a dead cat bounce, or a screaming rout have the same effect on GDP: none whatsoever.

You might imagine that with a word/fabrication ratio of 15/1 there'd be some defensible reality behind it to justify it, but no. The economy's anemic at best, it's not getting any better while Bush remains in office, and the long-term effects of the deficit and incontinent tax-cutting are still to be felt. In comparison the Clinton economy grew (at 3.7% for his full eight years) while we brought down the then-record Reagan/Bush deficit. Sorry, Cornerites, but you'll just have to bask in that sterling war record if you want to gloat.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Not to mention Alan Greenspan's gift of cutting interest rates by about 85% in just two years to the point where they simply couldn't be cut further without applying negative numbers.

Not as good as bubbles and fantasy, but still known to have some effect on GDP growth.

(Also not to mention a Greenspan antagonistic to Clinton policies.)