American Elephants


“Sorry For The Good News!” by The Elephant's Child

The Wall Street Journal, yesterday. headed the column on the Opinion page “Sorry for the Good News.”

Friday was a bad day in certain media and political precincts as the labor market turned in another gangbuster performance in January. The recession may not be imminent after all, and more people are working and making more money. Apologies to Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren and the writers at Bloomberg for the good news.

To be fair to the gloomsters, some economic signals have been negative. Consumer and business confidence has been lower following the stock market’s plunge in the autumn, especially December. The government shutdown suggested a political class that can’t shoot straight. Home prices and auto production are down, and growth in Europe and China is notably slowing.

Yet there was little bad news in the Labor Department’s sunny results for the first month of the year, despite the government shutdown. The economy produced 304,000 net new jobs in the month, 296,000 in the private economy where wealth is created.

Job growth was healthy across most industries, with a notable bump in construction (52,000) and durable-goods manufacturing (20,000). Manufacturing jobs have climbed 261,000 over the last year, 80% of them in durable goods. This is what happens when the political class takes its boot off the neck of private business, as the GOP Congress and Trump Administration did for two years.

The Journal apologized for publishing good news, when the fashion is to bash Trump ever more grievously for his faults and everything else about him. No one is supposed to praise Trump. Unthinkable! But President Trump has been blithely improving the economy, raising salaries, cutting regulations, and putting the unemployed to work. January produced 304,000 net new jobs – 296.000 in the private economy where wealth is created. I thought January was the month when all those folks hired for the Christmas rush lost their jobs and went back on unemployment. Over the past 12 months job growth has averaged 234,000 and 241,000 in the last three months. And some Democrat candidates are promising the raise taxes back to where they should be, and raise them even higher on the filthy rich. Please try to remember that Democrats just don’t understand free-market economics at all, and are always trying to fix it. That’s how we get recessions.

The Institute for Supply Management has a monthly survey of purchasing managers at some 300 manufacturing firms nationwide, had weakened in December and was expected to continue weakening. The unexpected turnaround is another signal that the economy has strengthened. Critics of tariffs expected upward pressure on the price of materials for manufacturers, but instead January saw the first monthly drop in material prices in three years.

Construction spending soared by 0.8 percent in November, but new home sales were higher than expected, residential construction rose 3.5 percent in November, and Highway construction spending is up 5.8 percent for the year.

For the first time in more than 20 years, the number of people who are out of the Labor force – those who are without jobs and not looking for a job – shrank by 647,000 over the Past 12 months. This is happening at a time when baby boomers are retiring en masse. Under Obama, the number of dropouts in the labor force exploded by 14.4 million.

I don’t know if all the “NeverTrumpers” can handle so much good news. Theoretically, they expected any good news to come from someone else, certainly not from a New York Real Estate Developer with orange hair and a tan from a bottle. Do you suppose that the “Deplorables”,”the toothless illiterates” from flyover country, “the racist bigots”, “the uneducated” –  actually knew what they were doing?

Advertisements


The Entertainer by The Elephant's Child
January 24, 2019, 11:34 pm
Filed under: Art, Entertainment, Heartwarming, Music | Tags: , ,

July 2018, Nashville. A Chet Atkins Convention: Richard Smith plays Scott Joplin, with Tommy Emmanuel in attendance.



The Media Misses Badly. And A Lesson in Successful Advertising by The Elephant's Child

This has been a day of extraordinarily bad behavior by the Left, provoked, as Joy Behar admitted, by Catholic kids wearing MAGA hats because the women on The View hate Trump and want him gone. A wee bit of Honesty.

It’s hard to remember that only a couple of days ago, the controversy was all about Gillette Razors and their attack on men and “toxic masculinity.” Turned out that the art director was a radical feminist well known for her hatred of men. The puzzle was why on earth a famous razor company  would approve such a commercial, but it seems that many businesses in our current climate have never learned the lessons of time and experience and do not have the sense to recognize that a wise business dealing with the American people does not choose to do politics instead of business, nor chooses to alienate half the country and all of their customers.

A competitor recognized the opportunity presented. And good for Barbasol.

And even a watch company saw a chance to speak out at Gillette idiocy!

Companies invest a lot of money in their advertising, hoping to please potential customers. Consider this a lesson in how it is done.



CNN’s Jim Acosta Decides To Be Helpful ! by The Elephant's Child

acosta-border-wall-twitter-420x315

Jim Acosta, CNN’s White House Correspondent, was in McAllen, Texas today with the President’s party, there to meet with Border Patrol people and get a look at the border. Usually preferring to lecture the President rather than report the news, Acosta today made an effort (unwittingly) to be helpful. There’s a video linked at Breitbart

Acosta:
I found some steel slats down on the border. But I don’t see anything resembling a national emergency situation.. at least not in the McAllen TX area of the border where Trump will be today.

Terminology makes all the difference. A Wall is bad, Must be demonized, “Immoral”, evil, not who we Americans are, no $5 billion, not one cent, etc, etc, etc. Steel slats, on the other hand, you can see right through, and they are not forbidding at all. All is peaceful in McAllen. Why would they need a wall? Why do we enjoy it so much when Leftys make fools of themselves? I think it’s called shadenfreude:

pleasure derived by someone from another person’s misfortune. synonyms:
delight · pleasure · happiness · joy · joyfulness · gladness · elation · euphoria · exhilaration · cheerfulness · amusement · mirth · mirthfulness · merriment · joviality · jollity ·
Hee hee.

ADDENDUM: Jim Acosta undoubtedly has the safest job at CNN right now. If they fired him for making the president look good, they would be admitting that they are, as an organization, attempting to destroy the president on a daily basis, and they can’t admit that.



A Little Good News by The Elephant's Child

Let’s begin with some good news for a cloudy January day. The U.S. economy added 312,000 jobs in December, Economists had predicted nonfarm payrolls would rise by 176,000. November results, initially reported at ( a lower than expected) 155,000 jobs gain was revised upward to 176,000.  Average hourly earnings rose by 0.4 percent. The total new manufacturing jobs came to 284,000 for 2018. That’s two-hundred eighty four thousand jobs.

Construction, retail, restaurant all posted job gains. Democrats have been trying to talk the economy down, but it didn’t work.



A Fond Farewell by The Elephant's Child

The coverage of the memorials and funeral for a former President of the United States has been a time of looking back, trying to understand the history, celebrate the long life of what almost everyone agrees was a very good man. There are, of course, many Democrats who can’t manage to be polite or decent, because George H.W. Bush was a Republican.

President Bush was what is called a “patrician”– someone from the American aristocracy. An American aristocracy is an odd notion, for the sense of the word implies”noble birth”, but we don’t do that here. He was, however, the son of a senator, the father of another president, but also the father of another governor, so there is an aristocracy of public service.

President Donald Trump has been excoriated as “unqualified” to be president, because he has neither held public office nor served in the military. President George H.W. Bush not only served in the military, but flew a torpedo bomber in the very nasty Pacific War,  got shot down, survived in a tiny rubber raft, got picked up and went right back to flying and bombing.

Qualifications to be president are quite straightforward: you have to be a natural born citizen, have attained the age of 35, and been resident in the United States for fourteen years. We have had some four star generals: Washington, Grant, and Eisenhower, and others who had noted military service: Monroe, Andrew Jackson, Teddy Roosevelt, and a few others, but not all of the presidents were military men. Abraham Lincoln served for just three days. Joe Biden just announced that he is the most qualified person to be president. So there you are. Michael Avenatti announced that he isn’t running after all. But the line of Democrats who are just dying to run grows apace.

So in spite of being a country where anyone with the correct minimal qualifications is entitled to run, we seem to want our president to be someone special. We nitpick their every utterance, criticize their demeanor, their decisions, their behavior. George Washington set the standard. The people were willing to proclaim him King, but he would have none of it, and when his term was done, he just went on home.

There always seems to be a sort of itch to put them on a pedestal. Perhaps that is why the Democrats are so eager to have the first black, the first woman, the first (pseudo) Native American, and there’s Kamala Harris as not only being black – but also female. One can just be grateful for the 35 year-old qualification or Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez would be running.

The country has hung out their flags, stood in long cold lines to have the chance to walk by the catafalque in the Capitol Building to mourn the passing of a good and kind man. I can appreciate all the other stuff, but I do marvel at the man who celebrated his 90th birthday by going skydiving.

Rest in Peace.



A Day of Thanksgiving, Then And Now. by The Elephant's Child

First published in 2008

On March 22, 1621, an official Native American delegation walked through what is now southern New England to negotiate with a group of foreigners who had taken over a recently deserted Indian settlement.  At the head of the party was an uneasy triumvirate: Massasoit, the sachem (political-military leader) of the Wampanoag confederation, a loose coalition of several dozen villages that controlled most of southeastern Massachusetts; Samoset, sachem of an allied group to the north; and Tisquantum, a distrusted captive, whom Massasoit had reluctantly brought along as an interpreter.

Massasoit was an adroit politician, but the dilemma he faced would have tested Machiavelli.  About five years before, most of his subjects had fallen before a terrible calamity.  Whole villages had been depopulated—indeed, the foreigners ahead now occupied one of the empty sites.  It was all he could do to hold together the remnants of his people.  Adding to his problems, the disaster had not touched the Wampanoag’s longtime enemies, the Narragansett alliance to the west.  Soon, Massasoit feared, they would take advantage of the Wampanoag’s weakness and overrun them.

Desperate threats require desperate countermeasures.  In a gamble, Massasoit intended to abandon, even reverse, a long-standing policy.  Europeans had been visiting New England for at least a century.  Shorter than the natives, oddly dressed, and often unbearably dirty, the pallid foreigners had peculiar blue eyes that peeped out of the masks of bristly, animal-like hair that encased their faces.  They were irritatingly garrulous, prone to fits of chicanery, and often surprisingly incompetent at what seemed to Indians like basic tasks.  But they also made useful and beautiful goods—copper kettles, glittering colored glass, and steel knives and hatchets—unlike anything else in New England.  Moreover, they would exchange these valuable items for cheap furs of the sort used by Indians as blankets.  It was like happening upon a dingy kiosk that would swap fancy electronic goods for customers’ used socks—almost anyone would be willing to overlook the shopkeeper’s peculiarities.

This is how author Charles C. Mann describes the first contact between the Pilgrims and the Native Americans, in his fascinating book 1491, which alters our view of the Americas before the arrival of the Europeans in 1492.  He goes on to say: “British fishing vessels may have reached Newfoundland as early as the 1480s and areas to the south soon after.  In 1501, just nine years after Columbus’s first voyage, the Portugese adventurer Gaspar Corte-Real abducted fifty-odd Indians from Maine.  Examining the captives, Corte-Real found to his astonishment that two were wearing items from Venice: a broken sword and two silver rings.”

As for the Indians, evidence suggests that they tended to view Europeans with disdain as soon as they got to know them.  The Huron in Ontario, a chagrined missionary reported, thought the French possessed “little intelligence in comparison to themselves.”  Europeans, Indians told other Indians, were physically weak, sexually untrustworthy, atrociously ugly, and just plain smelly. (the British and French, many of whom had not taken a bath in their entire lives, were amazed by the Indian interest in personal cleanliness.)…The Micmac in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia scoffed at the notion of European superiority.  If Christian civilization was so wonderful, why were its inhabitants all trying to settle somewhere else?

The Wall Street Journal has two editorials that it has been publishing on this day ever since 1961 : “The Desolate Wilderness”, and “And the Fair Land.” This year they have another piece by Ira Stoll on the first national Thanksgiving holiday, “A Day of Thanksgiving”, on Thursday, Dec. 18, 1777.  You will want to read all three.

We wish you and yours a most Happy Thanksgiving.  We all have much to be thankful for.




%d bloggers like this: