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July 31, 2020

Time to Grow the Economy, Not to Lock It Down Again

Terrible GDP numbers reveal the widespread damage done by the pandemic shutdowns.

The economic shutdown foisted on the country by our elected political leaders wrought record devastation. We already knew that, of course, but Thursday’s report on the second quarter’s worst-ever 9.5% decline in GDP (most media outlets are reporting the far more alarming 32.9% annualized rate simply for the shock value) puts an exclamation point on it. Thank goodness for the strength of the economy under President Donald Trump when this pandemic started, or we’d be in far worse shape.

Though the economy fell off a cliff in late March, it had begun to recover in May and June … until Democrats used a spike in cases in July to push for renewed lockdowns, causing the recovery to falter.

“Hard to believe,” say The Wall Street Journal’s editors, “but some on the left are stumping for a second nationwide lockdown to control the virus. Shut the U.S. down again until October when the scourge will be gone for good. Do they want another 33% decline in GDP and 40 million more unemployed?”

It’s not hard to believe at all and, yes, Democrats do want another 33% decline and 40 million more unemployed. All the better to improve that government-growth number after they achieve the real objective: defeating Donald Trump. His calling card is a strong economy, so they’ll keep pummeling it all the way through Election Day.

They have to keep at it because some economists predict reopening will yield third-quarter GDP growth of 25% — if you want to play the “annualized” game. We’re guessing the media won’t be reporting it that way, though.

Even in spite of the lockdown, the U.S. has endured more than 150,000 coronavirus deaths to date. Yet we must offer some perspective for this scary number: Roughly four in 10 were in nursing homes. And, reports The Washington Times, “The 3.4% case fatality rate in the U.S. is based on known cases. But with so many asymptomatic carriers going untested, the real number is probably closer to 0.6%, according to experts who have offered their best estimates.”

Deaths are deaths, and we lament them all. We just want to maintain perspective when the mainstream media is fomenting constant PANIC.

Beyond the pandemic (not to mention the race riots), this election is about whether we recover economically from this devastation and return to the prosperity we enjoyed just six short long months ago, or whether a newly elected president and Senate — putting Washington under unified Democrat control — and governors across the nation will saddle our hobbled and locked-down economy with massive debt, higher taxes, and more regulation.

Speaking of the election, one final note: Trump’s insane tweet this week was meant to distract from the horrible economic numbers. “Delay the Election until people can properly, securely and safely vote???” he asked. Only Congress can do that, of course, and Trump had no intention of really pushing it. But when Democrats — who by the way still don’t accept the 2016 results — are already trying to sow fear among voters that Trump “might not leave” if he loses, why would he give them more fodder? Nevertheless, he diverted the entire narrative, which was his real goal.

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