You know, there;s one thing about dealing with the devil. He’s generous with his money, and he offers great terms, but sooner or later, he collects souls for interest. And right now, I think that Trump is hearing a knocking at the Oval Office door that has just a strong whiff of brimstone to it.
The market giveth, and the market taketh away. The best description of the market I’ve ever heard was from Queen, when they sang in Bohemian Rhapsody, easy come, easy go. Little high, little low. And one of the first pieces of advice that a normal president, you know, one with an actual IQ, receives is, when it comes to the market, leave it alone! Glorify a strong stock market, but don’t assume credit for it, because sooner or later, the stock market is going to get a sudden fear of heights, and when that happens, you’re not going to want your logo on the tail of the plane.
When it comes to the stock market, I think you had better get ready to hear a lot more numbers from the presidential candidates as the race heats up, especially the Democratic candidates, of all stripes, running for all offices. The last I looked, about 10 minutes ago, the Dow Hones is off another 500 points today. I just took a quick peekie-see at the stock market history. You know what the Dow Jones closed at on January 19th,2017, the day before Donald Trump’s hand befouled the Lincoln bible? It closed at 25,615. I just turned the tv back on to check, and as I type this, the market is at 25,636. That’s not a typo. After 3+ years of incredible economic leadership from El Pendejo Presidente, the stock market is up a staggering 21 points..
Simply put, for the last three years, Trump has basically spun his wheels. Normally, that would not be a bad thing, but it is today because of Trump’s PT Barnumesque exaggeration of the stock market, and his role in it. After all, let’s not forget that it was only a little less than a month ago that the market was seriously flirting with the 30,000 mark. This is what Trump has never understood, the simple fact that globalization can make the entire global economy dependent on a particularly virulent form of the flu.
There are normally two ways that people watch the market. For most of us, the most popular way is The Big Board. We watch the average number for today as opposed to yesterday. If the market is up by 400, we rush out to buy a motor home, and if the Dow drops 400, we sell our collectible lego action figures in the front yard. Analysts will tell you that this is ridiculous, as the market is in constant flux. After all, nobody’s body temperature is a consistent 98.6.
Many analysts and pundits, such as Ali Velshi on MSNBC counsel that what to watch for isn’t the number itself, but the percentage of activity in either direction. Velshi himself doesn’t take any particular alarm until the 3% threshold is crossed. So a month ago, Velshi wouldn’t have worried about anything much less than a 900 point drop. And that threshold has now been repeatedly breached.
As it stands right now, His Lowness is boned. Sideways. Because when people look at the stock market, and their personal accounts, they go into it with a particular perception. And as things stand right now, no matter which matrix you use to look at the market, the perception is terrible for you personally.
First, the Big Board theory. A month ago, you opened your 401K statement and saw that your account had $100,000 in it. Kewl-io, right? But when you open your statement tomorrow, that account is going to have $95,000 and change in it. What the fuck?!? Here’s where perception kills. When you looked at $100,000 in your account, you didn’t see it for what it really was, increased value of the stock in your portfolio, you saw it as $100,000. But when you see that missing $4,500, what your mind automatically thinks of is how long it took you to earn it to put it in there! When you’re to the good, it’s money in your pocket, but when you come up short, that’s money out of your pocket. That’s not true, a good part of that $100,000 was profit from higher stock value, but that’s not how we see it.
The same holds true for the 3% matrix. A month ago, using the 3% threshold, it took a drop of 900 points to cross that magic marker, and make you nervous. But let’s just say that the Dow closes at 25,000 today. In order to hit the 3% marker. the Dow would only have to lose 750 points tomorrow instead of the previous 900. As the market value decreases, so does the amount that it has to drop on a given day to reach the 3% mark. This can give the impression of a market in free fall if there’s a string of bad days.
The funny thing is that nobody should be surprised at this. They have a saying on the Street, Trees don’t grow to the sky. We are in the record breaking 10th year of economic recovery following the 2008 debacle. Many analysts have been saying that a broad swath of stocks in the market are highly overvalued, and that a correction was on the way. What the coronavirus did, with it’s implications not only on the global markets, but on productivity, manufacturing, and product availability, was to accelerate vastly a correction that many analysts saw coming all along.
The problem always comes back to Trump. Trump took sole, economic genius credit for a basically sound, steadily growing economy he inherited from Obama. Trump took sole credit for giving everybody in the country a pot to piss in, and now that the correction is here, he’s going to end up being the pot that everybody pisses on. See, here’s the thing. Three years ago the stock market opened at 25,600. It took more than 3 years to add 4.500 points to the market in largely favorable conditions. Even if the coronavirus were to end tomorrow, there is no way that the stock market is going to recover 4.500 points in the next 8 months.
Perception is everything. And you don’t need to be an economic Nobel laureate to make the Democrats point going forward. The Democrats will simply say that If you had $500,000 in your retirement account one month ago, congratulations! You now have $450,000! This is the economic miracle that President has wrought in just three short years! And what is the forceful, effective response from the GOP and Trump supposed to be? Maybe something like, That’s bullshit! You haven’t lost a goddamn thing! The stock market was at 25,600 three years ago, and it’s at 25,600 today! You haven’t lost a penny, so what are those whiny Democrats complaining about? And just remember that big, beautiful tax cut I gave you a couple of years ago! And while statistically Trump may be correct, after spending the last three years bellowing from the rooftops how much richer everybody is due to his brilliance, somehow or other the realization that they’ve just been treading water is gonna come off as kind of sour grapes. This is going to get interesting.
To know the future, look to the past.before the insanity of the 2020 election, relive the insanity of the 2016 GOP primary campaign, and the general election, to see how we got to where we are. Copies of President Evil, and the sequel, President Evil II, A Clodwork Orange are available as e-books on Amazon, at the links above. Catch up before the upcoming release of the third book in the trilogy, President Evil III: All The Presidents Fen