Something the Trump administration aims to make better.
The thing has always been, for me, that what America lacks is productivity—stagnated in large part by more and more good paying, family supporting wage jobs being lost to cheaper foreign labor, bad trade deals, and higher and higher taxation and regulations imposed upon corporations. We shifted to more of a service economy, and more and more Americans have fallen into the rut of lower paying service jobs, particularly in the sectors of retail and fast food.
With lower wages across the board, not only are less taxes collected from the workers. But more and more of these workers make so little that they burden the middle class and the rich since more and more entitlements get doled out to a larger swath of the population.
This has long been a recipe for disaster, and in many ways this slow and ugly cancer led us to suffer through a Great Recession, and due to bad policy by the Obama administration, and almost non-existent path to recovery.
It can be a tough spot to be in at times depending on who you talk to. When you say to someone, "I am not a protectionist, I am for free trade, but I want to see more things made in America," you get more than a few furled brows. It seems to be a way of speaking out of both sides of the mouth. But what I have always felt is that what we actually need in order to have free trade is fair trade. In other words, it is of no benefit to America to have major imbalances in the goods we make and the goods we get from abroad. What's more, even those cheaper foreign goods are becoming less and less affordable since the wages for the average American worker have really not made any progress over the last few decades. In fact, in many cases, wages have actually fallen.
And of course there are the taxes which slow down every aspect of the economy. From extra taxes added to fuel, to the umpteen million special "fees" imposed upon us on our utility bills and cable bills, and added onto other things—these are essentially hidden taxes. Call it a fee if you want, but any money that you pay that goes to the government is a tax no matter what other moniker you may attach to it.
I think we will be getting a break from this very, very soon. A Trump tax plan should be introduced by August of this year.
Already we have seen major improvements in at least the jobs side of the coin. Many more companies have either decided to stay here, or are coming here to provide jobs. The most recent is a German candy maker, Haribo, who is famous for its gummy bear candies. Apple has said it will make more iPhones here. Ford has announced more jobs here. GM will keep more workers here. And both Ford and GM have plans to expand production here meaning more jobs. And the list goes on from Carrier to a long and growing list of both American and foreign companies either looking to expand operations within our borders, or bring new operations here.
If there is one thing that can put this economy into super high gear it is to increase median wages and lower the taxes. Americans are super consumers, and the more money they have in their pockets to consume goods and services, the more money will be flowing into the real economy, the more taxes that will be collected, and everybody wins. I think we all are well aware of the fact that when there is more money to spend, and more confidence in where the money is coming from to spend, we will inevitably spend more.
It won't happen overnight of course. There is still a lot of work to be done. But one thing I am uber confident in is the ability of the Trump administration to do the right things to work out and undue decades of economic policy that have all but siphoned off trillions, if not hundreds of trillions of dollars of wealth America could have enjoyed had we stuck to the idea that wealth in America stems largely from making things in America. We were a country built on productivity, innovation, invention, and then somewhere along the line it was decided that we could survive without all of that. The proof is in the pudding that we cannot. The proof is in the here and now that we thought wrong.
We've seen massive gains in the stock market since Trump took office. Now we will get to see the same thing happen to the entire economy. We're in for a ride the likes of which we have not seen since the Reagan years, and while the economy did do well under Clinton, we all know where that growth came from—the Internet boom. And unfortunately much of that money was simply smoke and mirrors, and when that bubble burst, we still didn't get it that we need those bricks and mortar manufacturing jobs to create a real and strong foundation for the American economy.
We're getting it now. Finally. And luckily our current president gets it too.