Wednesday, June 25, 2014

A Pen, a Phone and GDP Contracts by 2.9%

:: By: Larry Walker, Jr. ::

Back on January 14, 2014, POTUS 44 announced, “We’re not just going to be waiting for legislation in order to make sure that we’re providing Americans the kind of help they need. I’ve got a pen and I’ve got a phone.” Well, great!

Then on June 25, 2014, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), in its third and final release, announced that real gross domestic product (GDP) decreased at an annual rate of 2.9 percent in the first quarter (that is, from the fourth quarter of 2013 to the first quarter of 2014). In the fourth quarter of 2013, real GDP increased 2.6 percent.

Well, so much for going it alone. Please stop with the help already, it’s not working. Did anyone seriously believe this guy was some kind of economic prodigy, capable of single-handedly leading the U.S. economy to the Promised Land? Oh, please! My first impression was “What a moron.” Isn’t this the same guy who hired a 35-year-old fiction writer as his Deputy National Security Advisor? And, isn’t this the same guy that (ad infinitum)… believe me, it's not worth it.

After the first release estimate, Zerohedge.com reported, and I’m paraphrasing, “...if it wasn't for the (government-mandated) spending surge resulting from Obamacare, which resulted in the biggest jump in Healthcare Services spending in U.S. history, GDP growth would be negative.” Well, it so happens that, according to the BEA's third and final estimate, GDP growth actually was negative.

It seems that if all the cash sucked out of discretionary consumer spending during the first quarter, by way of artificially high (government-subsidized) health insurance premiums, and neatly tucked away into insurance company reserve funds (savings accounts), had instead been unleashed into the economy, GDP surely would have been positive.

Where I come from, a contraction in GDP of 2.9% should indicate that someone or something’s about to get the ax. Let’s just pray it’s this ridiculous pen and phone strategy. And, while we’re at it, how about losing that idiot fiction writer. Whose bright idea was that anyway?

Revised and updated on June 25, 2014.

1 comment:
  1. Real gross domestic product -- the output of goods and services produced by labor and property
    located in the United States -- decreased at an annual rate of 1.0 percent in the first quarter according to
    the "second" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the fourth quarter, real GDP
    increased 2.6 percent.

    The GDP estimate released today is based on more complete source data than were available for
    the "advance" estimate issued last month. In the advance estimate, real GDP was estimated to have
    increased 0.1 percent. With this second estimate for the first quarter, the decline in private inventory
    investment was larger than previously estimated (see "Revisions" on page 3).

    http://www.bea.gov/newsreleases/national/gdp/gdpnewsrelease.htm

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