Wednesday, May 11, 2022

A Disastrous Decline

On January 20, 2021 I wrote a blog post "It's All Downhill From Here" chronicling many key metrics on where the United States stood as Donald Trump left office and Joe Biden moved into the White House.

I predicted that it was likely to be "all downhill from here".

I wrote that Biden was going to face a lot of challenges including his diminished mental capacities, mollifying the extreme factions in the Democrat party, and allegations of wrongdoing by his son Hunter in addition to the fact that many questioned the legitimacy of his election in the first place.

However, I predicted that Biden's  biggest problem would be that he would inevitably be compared to Donald Trump's record, particularly on issues relating to the economy.

I wrote that it would be an impossible task.

This is what I wrote on that day not 16 months ago.

I wish Joe Biden all the luck in the world to better these (Trump's) measures.

More power to him if he can.

However, most likely it is all downhill from here simply due to the fact that it is hard to imagine anyone bettering these marks. How much better can it get on some of these? We have to be near the top of the hill right now. Trump would almost certainly not have been able to come close to matching them himself if he had remained in office. 

We may see the stock market go higher due to the Fed continuing to print money. Perhaps there is a post-Covid economic explosion to push things ahead for awhile. However, the bubble would seem to have to burst at some point. Can they keep it going for another four years? That seems doubtful right now.

Covid will end at some point but will Biden have anything to do with it? We are already past the 8 month period when most viruses die a natural death. Lockdowns have actually probably extended the life cycle of this virus. The vaccines are also in play now but what did Biden have to do with them?

All of this suggests to me that Biden will struggle in office on a downhill trajectory for a combination of the factors outlined above.

Let's look at a few of those measures as I cited them in that blog post and compare them to where we are now.

It is hard to comprehend how disastrous the decline has been.

                                                                           January 19, 2021              May 10, 2022

Gallon of gasoline (AAA nat'l avg. regular)          $2,39                                  $4.38

Natural gas per cf                                                      $2.48                                   $7.25

10-year Treasury Yield                                            1.094%                                3.0323%

30-year mortgage rate                                                2.87%                                 5.57%

CPI Inflation Rate (last 12 months)                           1.2%                                   8.5%

If you add a few other measures that I did not include in the January, 2021 blog post the decline we are experiencing is even more depressing.

Diesel fuel prices averaged $2.70 nationally for the week ended January 18, 2021. Diesel is now at $5.62.

Diesel Fuel Prices per Gallon

You want to know what is a driver of inflation? Diesel fuel. Those costs are incorporated into almost anything we produce or consume.

No food gets grown nor do any products get delivered without diesel fuel.

The war Biden declared on oil and gas when he took office has inhibited production.

Crude oil production in the United States is 11% lower (1.5 million barrels per day) than what was being produced at the peak during the Trump administration.

Natural gas production in the United States surged 29% during the four years Trump was President. Under Biden, natural gas production has increased less than 2%.

As bad as natural gas prices are in the United States, it is nothing compared to what Europe is experiencing where prices are at least four times as high right now.

Inflation price increases are taking a terrible toll on the American consumer.

Consumer credit balances soared in March as revolving credit (credit cards) increased by $31.4 billion to $52.4 billion. This was double what economists had projected for the month.

This would seem to indicate that the American consumer is under severe distress.

What do people do if they don't have the money? Pull out the plastic and hope.

What is Biden proposing to do about any of this?

He gave a speech yesterday as he tried to blame Putin, the Republicans, Covid and anything else he could think of to deflect responsibility from his own actions (or inactions).

Even CNN saw through his weak effort to deflect blame.


When Biden was asked why he was trying to blame the Republicans when Democrats controlled all three branches of government he said this.

"We control all three branches of government -- well, we don't really," Biden said.

The other thing in which there is no control of is what is going on is Biden's mind.

If you can figure out what Biden is saying here you are better than me.


A disastrous decline to describe what we are experiencing might actually be too kind.

No comments:

Post a Comment