Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A V-shaped recovery in trade

Here are two ways of looking at U.S. imports and exports, and to my eye both show that trade has experienced a V-shaped recovery. We still have not recovered fully, of course, but as of last March, exports were only 10% below their 2008 high. At the rate they're growing (exports up at a 20% annualized pace over the past six months), we'll reach new high ground by October. The trade sector of the economy will not have grown for roughly two years; that is the price we will pay for the housing and financial debacle that ensued. Progress will have been sidelined, living standards will not have risen as much as they otherwise could have. But life will go on and the economy will keep growing. And with any luck, we'll elect some people in November who will make it their business to shrink our bloated government, which was ultimately the cause of the slump.

On that latter point, I can't help but give a plug to Scott Walker, a young, rising star in the Republican firmament. His "Brown Bag" pitch is sure to catch on.


Benjamin said...

Excellent post.

Cut government spending?
Let's see, of federal income taxes, 70 percent is eaten up by the Dept of Defense, Homeland Security-Civilian Defense, the VA, the USDA, Commerce, Interior and debt.

Rural states are heavily subsidized by urban states, yet every rural state, no matter how meager their population, has two Senators. There is an all-powerful rural bloc in the Senate.

I suspect we will see a Palin-Bachman 2012 ticket for the R-Party. Alaska thrives on federal red ink and Bachman personally has received $250k in farm subsidies.

I suspect we will not see serious cuts in federal outlays any time soon.

Public Library said...

The banks are eating out just fine off the backs of Americans. Who are you fooling with that brown bag lunch?

It is almost improbable that 3 to 4 Wall St banks could record perfect trading records for Q1. But there you have it, one massive wealth transfer to the banks via the Fed.

You complain about transfer payments but nary a word about the biggest fraud transfer in American history.

Bill said...

Another broken record post, Benji?

Benjamin said...


I have a consistent point of view, based on the true shape of the federal budget.

I would be delighted if anyone in the R-Party proposed a 15 percent across the board decrease in federal outlays, or that each state receive back from DC roughly the same as they kick in.

I see no reason why some states subsidize other states, not for years, not for decades, but for generations at a stretch. We have created a weakling, inbred, knock-kneed, socialized rural economy.

The sad reality is today that without constant federal infusions of cash, much of rural America would just blow away. No phones, highways, power systems, water systems, airports, railstops, postal service etc.

This has made rural Senators ardent advocates of more federal spending (especially in their states) and full-fledged log-rollers (yes, you get national health insurance if we get more U.S. Army contracts in our district).

The Tea Party (if there is such a thing other than people with placards and evidently no work to do), from what I gather, is not even cognizant of this reality.

So, we can hope for tax cuts. That's the easy part. Who does not want a tax cut? Sure, cut my taxes.

Spending cuts? Not as much.

Let's pass the deficits on to our children.

Family Man said...

I got good call for all(dissatisfied) and above 70k USD per annum. Starting Jan 2011 Russia should lower foreigner employees PIT tax from 30% to 13% (equal to locals). Not bad.

Paul said...

You have to shake your head in amazement watching Benji repeatedly throw stones at the GOP while his boyfriend Barack and Pelosi(spending up nearly a trillion dollars since she took over as Speaker) are furiously bankrupting America.

Benji, where are Democrat Scott Walkers, Chris Christies, Paul Ryans, and even John McCains?

Benjamin said...


Actually, the Dems had a guy named Bill Clinton. Ran federal surpluses. Proposed budgets with surpluses, something no R-Party prezzy has done in more than 50 years.

I plan to vote for Ron Paul in 2012, btw.

What do you think of an R-Party Palin-Bachman ticket in 2012? Would they have the gravitas to balance the federal budget? Frankly, I thinnk the R-Party trenchermen would make a short meal of those two. What's your opinion?

Scott Grannis said...

Family Man: Re: Russian income taxes on foreigners. Don't forget the U.S. citizens working overseas must pay U.S. income tax PLUS any foreign taxes. Russia would not really be increasing the incentives for workers to be there, it would be reducing the disincentives.

Paul said...


If you want to go back a decade, Clinton was no Obama, that's for sure. And Clinton was no Gingrich. The '95 budget shutdown happened because of the "extremist" Republican
budget cuts.

"Proposed budgets with surpluses, something no R-Party prezzy has done in more than 50 years."

And I'll put any R Party prezzy up against your boyfriend.

I'd do a Palin-Bachmann ticket over your boyfriend and his idiot sidekick. Palin was a budget cutter in Alaska, and Bachmann received an
88% score for '09 from the National Taxpayers Union. McCain, by the way, scored a 93%.

"I plan to vote for Ron Paul in 2012"

Congratulations on throwing your vote away on a nut. You're effectively voting for Obama yet again.