Representative Andy Harris was quoted in the August 14 edition of The Star Democrat as saying that “Bottom line, this president understands how the economy works.”

Really? There is a lot of evidence to refute that claim.

In his private business career, Trump has filed for bankruptcy six times, even managing to lose money in the lucrative casino business. In one 10-year period, his businesses lost more than $1 billion. His list of failed businesses includes such colossal flops as Trump Steaks, Trump University, Trump Airlines, Trump Magazine, Trump Water, and Trump Vodka.

As president, Trump may be the most economically illiterate president since Herbert Hoover. Just a couple of examples of his ignorance should suffice. He continues to believe that “trade wars are good, and easy to win.” He thinks that foreign importers pay the tariffs when in fact tariffs are taxes on U.S. consumers. He believes the supply side myth that massive tax cuts for the wealthy will pay for themselves even though his tax cuts are now starting to add more than $1 trillion to the U.S. national debt.

A report card issued by 50 eminent economists of all political persuasions gave Trump an F grade on trade and a D- for fiscal policy. Even his claimed successes need some perspective. For example, the growth in the S&P 500 during his first 645 trading sessions was 29%. But during the same period, the S&P 500 went up by 46% under the Obama administration. Job growth during Trump’s first 29 months fell short of the job growth of the last 29 months of the Obama presidency by nearly 1 million jobs.

In reality, whatever success the U.S. economy is having is not because of Trump’s economic policies but in spite of those misguided policies. He inherited an improving economy and is now in the process of driving it into a recession.

RICK SCHIMING

Easton

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