Donald Trump and Elijah Cummings Are Both Betraying Voters

‘Racist!’ said Nancy Pelosi, pointing the finger at America’s chief executive.

‘Right back at you,’ said he.

Blah, blah, blah…

Empty epithets

When you accuse someone of being ‘pusillanimous,’ it has real meaning. As does ‘ignorant.’ Or ‘vain.’ Even ‘wicked’ still has some meaning. But ‘racist’ is now a hollow word.

But the whole discussion is so full of empty epithets and silly name-calling, lie piled onto lie…claptrap on claptrap…it’s like a presidential debate!

Donald J Trump:

So sad that Elijah Cummings has been able to do so little for the people of Baltimore. Statistically, Baltimore ranks last in almost every major category. Cummings has done nothing but milk Baltimore dry, but the public is getting wise to the bad job that he is doing!

Left on their own, the people of Baltimore would go about their business as best they could. But they have Elijah Cummings in Congress and Donald Trump in the White House.

Egged on by the former…and following the budget approved by the latter…the government gives out free money to people who don’t work, funds apparatchiks and activists who don’t have any skin in the game, and supports scammy nonprofits who claim to be doing God’s work.

Together with their federal predecessors over the last 50 years, they’ve done more harm to West Baltimore than all the angry racists, KKK clowns, and numbskull rednecks put together.

Ah…Dear Reader…what a delicious irony. The person who says to the poor, ‘I don’t like you…I’m not going to help you,’ does them more good than the do-gooders. He leaves them alone. The poor get along…do what they can…live as they want…or at least they get what they deserve.

The do-gooders, on the other hand, hand out free money…always with strings attached. ‘If you want it,’ they say, ‘you can have it…as long as you don’t get married, don’t have a job…and don’t stand up straight and try to be independent.

‘Above all, don’t start thinking for yourself. Stay with us…stay poor…and vote for us; we’ll take care of you.’

Pretend battles

But you don’t get elected by having a heart that doesn’t bleed. Feigning tears and feeling the voters’ pain are job prerequisites.

Like Elijah Cummings, you tell the voters that you are one of them…and that you’re not grandstanding for the cameras; you’re ‘fighting’ for the people.

It’s all part of the burlesque of modern public life. Almost no one is on that level. Almost nothing can be taken at face value. Almost everything is a damned lie.

Mr Trump is right; the risk for Cummings is that the public might catch on. But that is the same risk Mr Trump faces. Mr Cummings got elected by pretending to do battle for the voters of West Baltimore. Mr Trump got elected by pretending to fight for the forgotten voters of the heartland.

You can see how Mr Cummings’ hustles work; just take a drive around West Baltimore.

You can visit Mr Trump’s hustles by taking US 95 south to Northern Virginia — home of the military-industrial complex that Eisenhower warned against.

The connivance between them was on display last week. Both liberal do-gooders and conservative do-gooders faced a common enemy — a debt ceiling. Its purpose was to protect the public by preventing politicians from bankrupting the nation.

But Trump betrayed the fiscal conservatives still hiding in the caves of the Republican Party. He joined Nancy Pelosi to brush aside the debt ceiling and add $1.7 trillion to the US debt.

Assuming the deal passes in the Senate, this will bring the total debt added by laws signed by Donald J Trump to $4.1 trillion.

Road to West Baltimore

Also last week, the last-quarter GDP numbers came out, showing that Trump’s claims of 3% growth and the hope of growing our way out of debt were both false.

Revised numbers for 2018 showed the US economy growing well below the 3% mark. Federal debt alone is growing twice as fast.

Nor has the Trump tax cut provided any lasting benefit to the economy. The numbers reveal an economy very similar to the Obama economy…but worse.

Last week’s annualised 2nd-quarter growth rate was barely over 2%. It would have been substantially under 2% had federal spending not increased under the Trump Team.

In other words, the economy is barely growing…and what little growth there is has been achieved in the worst possible way — by putting the whole country on the road to West Baltimore.

Spending jumped in the least productive segment of the economy, government, while the Federal Reserve funded foolish and wasteful projects — buybacks, WeWork, Beyond Meat, Tesla, and much of the shale oil industry — with cheap borrowing rates.

Never before in the history of the US economy has so little growth come at such a high cost.

But don’t expect either Cummings or Trump to back off. They’re on the same team; both want even cheaper rates from the Fed…and more federal spending. Here’s The Donald as channeled by USA Today:

President Trump apparently won’t be satisfied with the Federal Reserve’s anticipated quarter percentage point interest-rate cut this week, saying the Fed “will do very little by comparison” to Europe and China.

In a tweet Monday morning, Trump said, “The EU and China will further lower interest rates and pump money into their systems, making it much easier for their manufacturers to sell product. In the meantime, and with very low inflation, our Fed does nothing — and probably will do very little by comparison. Too bad!”

More money to the poor. More money to the fixers and do-gooders. More money to the rich, too.

The formula for destroying West Baltimore was fairly simple: Undermine the family by giving money to unmarried mothers, undermine fathers by taking away the responsibility to support their children, undermine work by giving money to people who don’t work, undermine authentic community self-help organisations with money for fake government services, and undermine private industry with regulations, minimum wages, taxes, and rules that small, low-cost, marginal businesses can’t afford.

It ruined West Baltimore. Will it ruin the whole US, too? We’ll find out.


Bill Bonner

Since founding Agora Inc. in 1979, Bill Bonner has found success and garnered camaraderie in numerous communities and industries. A man of many talents, his entrepreneurial savvy, unique writings, philanthropic undertakings, and preservationist activities have all been recognized and awarded by some of America’s most respected authorities. Along with Addison Wiggin, his friend and colleague, Bill has written two New York Times best-selling books, Financial Reckoning Day and Empire of Debt. Both works have been critically acclaimed internationally. With political journalist Lila Rajiva, he wrote his third New York Times best-selling book, Mobs, Messiahs and Markets, which offers concrete advice on how to avoid the public spectacle of modern finance.

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