Tagged Economy

Donald Trump Is Not as Bad as We Thought He Would Be. He’s Worse. Far Worse.

Since Donald Trump’s inauguration as president, the following has occurred in the United States of America: Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington had to file a complaint “to notify the new president that he was officially in violation of his lease for the Trump International Hotel down the street from the White House. The lease that one of Trump’s company’s, Trump Old Post Office LLC, signed with the government states that no ‘elected official’ of the U.S. government can share in the lease or derive benefit from it.” Trump heard a sermon from Robert Jeffress, a Trumpkin pastor who tried to invoke God to…

The Worst Possible Inaugural Address, By the Worst Possible President

Donald Trump is now the president of the United States, and on his very first day, with his very first speech, he has managed to redraw the picture of America to which we are used. Before Trump, we were accustomed to an America that engaged the world with confidence and strength. An America willing to trade with the world, understanding that trade is not a zero-sum game. An America that not only honored its alliances, but ensured that its allies would never have any reason to doubt American resolve. An America with problems–because no nation is without problems–but one that…

Hillary Clinton’s Campaign Insults the Very Nation She Wishes to Lead

The putative next president of the United States has been trying recently to seem more approachable, more warm, more friendly, more of a kind-of-person-you-and-I-would-want-to-have-a-beer-with kind of politician. Presumably, achieving all of this would cause the rest of us to want to give her the keys to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. But when one looks beyond the charm offensive, one continues to find little charm, and much that is offensive.

What Happens when the Minimum Wage Is Raised?

Well, among other things, you get employers looking for ways to replace human workers with automated ones. To be sure, the process of worker automation is inevitable regardless of whether there has been an increase in the minimum wage. But if you are a human being interested in keeping a job, minimum wage increases–especially sharp and sudden increases to $15 per hour–don’t help human beings keep their jobs. The only thing they do is cause managers and bosses to look for ways to cheaply replace human labor.

The Democratic Party’s Failure on Trade Policy

As anyone who follows the news is aware, Barack Obama’s biggest legislative goal for his second term is to pass the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. He may well get fast-track authority in order to push for passage of the agreement, and the agreement may yet pass. I hope that he does get fast-track authority, and that the agreement passes. But as anyone who follows the news is also aware, the initial attempt to pass fast-track authority failed in the House of Representatives, because Democrats decided to desert and defy a president from their own party:

For the Love of All that Is Holy, Stop Claiming that China Will Supplant America as a Superpower. It Won’t. No, Seriously, It Won’t.

Our punditry class and our media in general are filled to the gills with incredibly lazy people who are far more content to recycle stories and analysis than they are to put forth anything resembling original thought and commentary. That’s in part why certain strains of thought that utterly lack any serious intellectual content and are no better than your run-of-the-mill urban myth still get accepted as written-into-stone facts by the public at large. The punditry class and the media in general fail to lift a collective finger in order to demolish myths and half-truths; it’s less taxing for the brain…

Quote of the Day

At 9:30 a.m. on a sunny weekday, the phones at Candelia, a purveyor of sleek office furniture in Lille, France, rang steadily with orders from customers across the country and from Switzerland and Germany. A photocopier clacked rhythmically while more than a dozen workers processed sales, dealt with suppliers and arranged for desks and chairs to be shipped. Sabine de Buyzer, working in the accounting department, leaned into her computer and scanned a row of numbers. Candelia was doing well. Its revenue that week was outpacing expenses, even counting taxes and salaries. “We have to be profitable,” Ms. de Buyzer…

Paul Krugman Is Fundamentally Dishonest (A Continuing Series)

Any just and intellectually defensible analysis of the New York Times’s decision to hire Paul Krugman as a columnist has to conclude that in making the hire, the Times severely harmed its own credibility. Krugman simply cannot be trusted to present facts and make honest arguments. Behold the latest example of Krugman’s thoroughgoing mendacity. Comes now the part of any Krugman-related post in which I remind people of what Daniel Okrent, the onetime New York Times ombudsman wrote upon giving up his onetime post: Paul Krugman “has the disturbing habit of shaping, slicing and selectively citing numbers in a fashion…