Dick Cheney Takes Aim At The Slowing Economy

The economy isn't doing well. This we know. Figures yesterday showed ever more evidence of a housing slowdown. Stocks took a tumble as a result. Paul Krugman, noticing the same McMansion decline i discussed yesterday, took a swipe at housing gloom today. As if this isn't enough, today we had the most tellingly indicator of all. The Editorial page of the Wall St Journal ran had a big piece trying to put the housing decline squarley within the context of past monetary policy. Put another way, they judged the decline in house prices as sufficiently politically dangerous that they needed to try and find a way not to blame the President.

The Journal is now a key indicator of economic bad news. So wedded are they to Bush administration, that they feel compelled to defend even the worst performing parts of the economy. Amid mounting evidence of a slowdown, they returned last month to their concept of the "Dangerfield Economy", named after Rodney Dangerfield, and so coined because the economic expansion gets "no respect.' And recently their place on the fringes of mainstream economics has been confirmed by repeated denials of the Phillips Curve, the orthodox economic view that a short term trade off exists between growth and inflation.

Bottom line: if the WSJ says something isn't the President's fault, you can be almost certain it is. And if they say the economy deserve respect, its time to buy abroad. But - hey! - don't take our word for it. Ask Dick Cheny. Since its friday i thought it'd be ok to link to a fun report on Alternet claiming that our sharp-shooting Vice-President is busy moving his private wealth into foreign securities to avoid the coming downturn in the american economy. I'm not exactly sure what the piece means when it says "in markets that do not fluctuate based on the U.S. dollar". Any foreign denominate security must eventually be sold back to earn dollars, so their value depends on the exchange rate. Nevertheless, if the Vice-President thinks that the economy is in the tank, then perhaps the more aggressive reccesion forcasters might not be so far off?