Despite running on a populist message that pledged strong and novel support for the middle class, the Trump administration and Republicans on the Hill have done little to nothing to turn those promises into meaningful actions. Recently, Larry Kudlow and others have made it expressly clear that the administration and GOP have zero interest in assisting the middle class during this great time of need. Rather, they are doubling down and going “all in” on their support for big business and the wealthy elite. Their message is clear: Screw the middle class!
As most of you know, we are not a politically oriented site. We are not left-right ideological believers; rather, we are top-down rational and logical thinkers. Our focus is always on the world around us and what we can do to best be prepared for potential outcomes.
However, that mission does require us to maintain situational awareness at a macro level (including the political landscape) in order to identify and analyze high-level threats, determine appropriate threat levels, and disseminate actionable guidance on how our readers and viewers can best prepare for potential outcomes.
We believe there is a perfect storm brewing in our country—fueled by converging “weather” systems. At the root of all the “visible” symptoms that divide us as a people lies an invisible disease that unites us all through its contagion: economic inequality.
As a nation, we are trying to navigate the stormy waters—attempting to chart a course between the radical Left’s vision of a socialist utopia (realized through anarchy and chaos) and the Right’s thirst and drive for an authoritarian technocracy.
Both extremes benefit the elites… both extremes are bad for the commoners.
In this article, we are simply trying to highlight the risk posed by the position currently being taken by the Trump administration and the GOP: an abandonment of the middle class in favor of backing the elites.
There are a lot of policy points that we agree with the Trump administration and the GOP on. However, this is one where we clearly (and I can’t emphasize that enough) disagree.
We feel this strategy will (1) increase wealth inequality, (2) increase growing social unrest, (3) lead to negative economic outcomes, and, ultimately, (4) accelerate the collapse of our economy and society as a whole.
Again, we don’t approach things ideologically. (If that’s what your seeking, this probably isn’t the place for you)
Instead, we strive to view things through the prism of facts, logic, and reason. We try (though we are by no means perfect) to serve as an unbiased umpire for the prepping community–calling balls and strikes as we see them… regardless of which side of the political divide is throwing them.
So, without further ado, let’s dive in and analyze the GOP’s messaging—overt signals that clearly communicate their intention to abandon the middle class in favor of backing the elite class (i.e., themselves). It is an unfolding tale of betrayal and treason—an immoral quest to quench an insatiable thirst for wealth, power and control.
Kudlow Delivers the Message: Trump & GOP Say No to Federal Unemployment Assistance
According to Larry Kudlow—Trump’s senior economic advisor and mouthpiece, both the administration and most of the Congressional Republicans are determined to end—not extend (at any level)—the enhanced unemployment benefits at the end of July when they expire.
This despite the fact that 40+ million Americans are currently unemployed as a result of the pandemic—many of whom are depending on that assistance to survive.
The unemployment rate in April and May (despite the rosy picture offered up by the Right) was higher than at any time in American history since the Great Depression. The just released initial jobless claims report showed almost zero improvement, with yet another 1.5 million Americans filing new claims for unemployment assistance for the week ending June 16th.
To learn more about the bogus May jobs report (the primary piece of evidence they are using to support their claim that the commoners don’t need any more assistance), we encourage you to read our article Bogus Jobs Report: False Hope, Garbage Numbers & Junk Science, where we break down this absurd report in detail.
Kudlow callously states that these payments serve as a disincentive to go back to work. What a joke and an insult for millions of middle-class Americans—many who have faithfully supported the President through thick and thin… believing his populist “defender of the middle class” bullshit.
30-40 million Americans (a great many in the middle class) would love to go back to work… but they can’t! Their jobs are not available—and may not be for a long time (if ever).
The majority of these folks were “temporarily” furloughed—meaning, they are waiting to return to their jobs. I mean that is the claim, after all, being advanced by the Right, correct? The economy is bouncing back, everyone is going back to work, and the future is so bright we all need to wear shades?
What exactly does the administration and GOP expect these folks to do in the short term? Abandon the jobs they’ve committed years to building—when they may (are expected to?) come back quickly in the near future?
And, if they do abandon them… where exactly do you think 40 million Americans are going to run out and get a job at? Nobody’s hiring middle class workers? What current or leading economic indicators or data are these ruling class idiots looking at???
So, let us get this straight. These middle-class Americans are supposed to abandon jobs where they were performing professional duties and earning $60-100k/year and, instead, graciously accept the opportunity to work the drive-thru at Wendy’s?
Really? That’s your plan? You’re amazing MAGA plan for the middle class?
Give me a break.
Kudlow spells it out for all to hear:
Wow! That’s some well-defined plan there GOP.
Let me get this straight. You’re trying to figure out some kind of reform measures, but you’re really not sure. Those measures won’t help the 30+ million unemployed Americans (many in the middle class) who aren’t going to get their job back any time soon… and might provide some minimal (token) amount of help to those who are fortunate enough to able to return to work—but not much.
What a plan—small, disdainful, and meaningless! (As opposed to the BIG, reverent, and highly substantial measures for big business and the wealthy elites)
Heaven forbid we ever consider actually providing some measure of real benefit to the commoners! Alas, they don’t deserve it—they aren’t entitled to the same consideration and benefits that the elites have earned by way of their ill-gotten status (hence the massive economic inequality in America).
The Right has abandoned any pretense of caring about the middle class. Though, I would argue they never had the backs of the middle class in the first place—it was all a political farce to maintain their wealth and power (no different from the despised Left).
They care about one thing and one thing only: their power and the markets (their wealth).
The ruling elites—regardless of which side of the isle they sit on—don’t care about the middle class. They just use them… and they’ve made that crystal clear during this pandemic crisis to those who have ears and are listening.
When is the middle class going to wake up and realize what’s really going on around them?
GOP Ditches the Middle Class… Says “Peace Out” and Goes on Vacation???
To make matters worse, the Trump administration and GOP congressional negotiators had the coldhearted audacity to ditch participation in formal talks regarding the next stimulus package until late July, delaying the critical process until Congress returns from their much-deserved vacation.
How nice of you. You bailed your crony wealthy and big-business friends out, so now it’s time to go and enjoy your vacation… while the rest of America is suffering. After all, who really cares about the middle class or the commoners? (Apparently not Trump or the GOP!)
GOP Is Peddling Garbage Data to Back Their Treasonous Actions
The Trump administration and GOP lawmakers are claiming that they are armed with “encouraging” data on unemployment. In other words, don’t question the elites you foolish, ignorant, and unenlightened commoners… just trust us!
However, their data is entirely predicated on bogus, artificially manipulated numbers (again, we encourage you to read our article Bogus Jobs Report: False Hope, Garbage Numbers & Junk Science?). They set a target they wanted (that supported their desired outcome) and then simply adjusted the models to produce it.
For example, they claim—based on the May Jobs Report—that things are just peachy, and we are witnessing a V-shaped recovery in the job market:
However, as we noted, this claim is entirely fabricated—based on an absurd change to the birth-death rate of small businesses (an easily manipulated variable in the BLS model).
Furthermore, they are boisterously claiming that a lot of the money from the previous stimulus packages hasn’t been spent yet. Specifically, they argue that only $94 billion of the measly $200 billion (out of the trillions being directed to big business, the wealthy, and government) that was earmarked for unemployment assistance has actually been spent as of June 8th.
First, that may be the case; however, there is still roughly six weeks of time remaining on that funding—and it will more than likely all be spent (and they know that).
Second, if it isn’t spent, then why not extend the $600 unemployment payments? I mean, that money was already earmarked and approved? If you approved X dollars, why set a time limit on it? If there is still a need (and there clearly is), then why not let it be paid out? And if it isn’t, where will that money get redirected to???
And, again, those funds—the only federal assistance actually going towards helping the real working middle class—only represented an infinitesimal drop in the stimulus bucket. They deserve much more in the form of assistance.
And if they don’t get it, things could get really bad, really quickly. In May, 30% of Americans failed to make their house payment. That is one of the craziest statistics I’ve seen in my lifetime (and I’ve seen some mind-blowing things in the realm of economics). That’s one in three Americans… and that’s WITH the unemployment and stimulus assistance!
Imagine what’s going to happen when that gets cut-off on July 31st???
We are going to see evictions like we have never witnessed before. Homeless rates are going to skyrocket. The housing market is going to collapse. The market is going to collapse. The massive downward pressure on consumer demand will cause the economy to implode and unemployment to soar to levels never imagined.
One in four homeowners is at risk of defaulting on their mortgage over the next 3-6 months???
No need for federal assistance and stimulus? Are you kidding me? What on earth could these folks be looking at and thinking???
Is this really what Trump and the GOP want? I don’t think so. But they are playing a political game of chicken—one that is more akin to Russian Roulette with the middle class.
The problem with these games is that the stakes are real… and sometimes you lose.
Middle Class Now the Lower Class—Just Taking Handouts
Then you have the framing of this much needed and, arguably, deserved assistance for those unemployed due to the pandemic and government mandated shutdowns as “handouts”???
Why is it that every time middle class Americans need a little assistance from the government (the very government they work so hard to fund through their tax dollars) it is called a handout?
Funny, no one in the Trump administration or GOP is calling the stimulus and Fed liquidity (aka cash) that is flowing into pockets of big business and the wealthy elites a handout?
Of course not! They deserve that money—they are entitled to the middle class’s money! You silly commoners, tricks are for kids… you don’t deserve anything. Now hush up, go back to work (never mind if you can’t), and vote for us in November.
I guess these politicians (the ruling elite) forgot that they actually work for us—not the other way around. It’s not their money to redistribute as they desire—it’s our money. It belongs to we the people.
We call something a “handout” when it is received at no cost. However, the middle class has worked hard and contributed massively to our nation’s tax revenue. Furthermore, it will be on the hook to pay back the stimulus. Thus, any assistance they receive is not a handout—it is a benefit they earned and paid for!
By the way, remember that not a single senator or congress person waived their salary (that we the people pay to them) during this crisis—nor could they even suspend their precious PTO vacations to take care of the people’s business in this time of struggle for many Americans. Hypocrisy? You be the judge.
Mnuchin Calls for Caution When it Comes to Helping the Middle Class
Add to this the fact that Treasury Secretary Mnuchin is now warning that we must be very cautious about providing stimulus assistance to the commoners.
Funny, you weren’t even remotely careful with the trillions of dollars you’ve stolen from the middle class and redistributed to big business and the wealthy to bail them out? And that process continues in full force… even gaining additional speed with the Fed now buying individual corporate bonds.
Why is there no need for caution when it comes to bailing out the elites? But, oh, we must utilize unyielding caution when it comes to assisting the American people—the commoners!
Again, these same folks sure aren’t worried about being careful when it comes to spending our money to “help” big business and your crony wealthy friends… so why all the need for “caution” when it comes to helping the middle class??? (Ask this question and you’ll hear nothing but crickets chirping!)
Interestingly, Fed Chair Jerome Powell has made it clear he rejects this belief and has strongly encouraged the executive and legislative branches to take the immense needs of the American people seriously. He rebuked Mnuchin’s take, stating:
Now, we have been highly critical (and rightfully so) of Powell and the Fed (see our article Fed Bails Out Rich & Fleeces Middle Class: A Bond Liquidity Crisis???) for its role in the redistribution of wealth from the middle class to the wealthy elites—via artificially low interest rates and egregious quantitative easing measures.
However, in this case, it is clear that even Powell (the Robin Hood of the Rich) clearly understands that this benefit to the wealthy elites must be equally extended to the commoners… or we will face a backlash of civil unrest over the unsustainable and exponentially expanding economic (wealth) inequality in America—and potentially destabilizing economic outcomes that could put “collapse” into real play.
He has been unabashedly vocal and unwaveringly consistent in his calls for Congress to recognize and act on the immense need of Americans for real assistance (physical stimulus) in this time of unprecedented need.
I don’t think he’s exaggerating. I think he truly understands just how deeply in trouble we are—and I think it scares him. The Fed—for right or for wrong—has thrown everything it can at the problem. However, its available tools are designed exclusively for the financial markets—not the needs of the American people. He can prop up the markets for a time, but he cannot (1) hold them up indefinitely nor (2) prop up the economy (viz., employment and consumer demand). The economy demands legislative (physical stimulus) measures—and massive ones at that.
His is a valid call that has—apparently—fallen on entirely deaf ears in the ranks of the politicians… at least those on the Right.
He is warning that the divergence between the markets and the real economy will correct. That means either the economy will recover (and match the markets), or the markets will crash (and match the economy). The ultimate outcome depends on congressional legislation… and the clock is winding down.
Yes, it’s a proverbial Scylla and Charybdis dilemma. Normally, we would be entirely opposed to debt-financed stimulus. However, in this case, it is absolutely necessary, and we would rather see it flow to the people than the elites who have far less (if not zero) need for it.
We believe strongly that a bottom-up rather than top-down approach is what is needed.
We are facing a deflationary threat. We don’t have a supply issue—we have a demand problem. Stimulus for the people will offset some of the personal finance problems they are facing (averting conflating crises—such as a housing or credit crash) and will stimulate consumer demand.
In marketing terms, we need a “push” strategy rather than a “pull” promotion. The former is the only path to steady economic recovery and the restoration of jobs. The latter will only exacerbate the deflationary pressures and expand the already absurd wealth gap.
It is akin to a graveyard spiral in a plane. If you continue to do what your gut tells you to do, you just make things worse—tightening the spiral and increasing your decent. Instead, you have to trust your instruments and do the opposite—it is the only way to avoid crashing into the ground.
The Right can follow its innate urge to stimulate supply (succumbing to spatial disorientation), but it will only continue to make the deflationary problem worse. Or, it can trust the actual data (and listen to the Fed) and do the opposite of what comes naturally for them—stimulating demand. The hope being that we have enough time and space between us and the ground to avoid a devastating crash.
Help for the Middle Class is Coming… In the Form of Tax Assistance???
This is the GOP’s favorite tool for obfuscation—tax relief. It has single-handedly helped to cover-up and conceal massive amounts of wealth being fleeced from the middle class and redistributed to the wealthy.
Tax relief may have provided some very limited benefit during a booming economy, but it is absolutely not going to help millions of unemployed or underemployed middle-class Americans.
Tax relief doesn’t help when you have lost your job or had your income reduced due to reduced hours or pay reductions.
Furthermore, the GOP’s “bold” tax cuts for middle class America didn’t turn out to be that substantial once the smoke cleared, and the dust settled. I don’t know many middle-class American families that actually saw much of a reduction in their taxes.
It’s always a hollow promise—an illusionary carrot dangled in front of the commoners by the elites to keep them running on the economic treadmill.
The real beneficiaries of the “bold” tax and regulatory relief measures are big business. Did they share any of the reward they reaped with the working class?
Of course not silly—it went to the C-suites and the wealthy that own 92% of the household equity in the stock market. It was all an integral part of the greatest redistribution of wealth in the history of mankind.
No, their focus is on covering the collective asses of the elites and keeping the economic machine grinding—a machine powered by the commoners and designed to pump money into the pockets of the elite.
Now, we’re not saying big business and the wealthy aren’t important. But the massive ranks of unemployed and underemployed Americans who have been devastated by this crisis are equally important—and deserve the same treatment as big business and the rich.
When the federal government decided to enter the fray and provide assistance to one class of Americans, it accepted the obligation to equally assist ALL Americans.
These folks would love to have a job to go back to—but millions upon millions don’t yet.
It’s not about incentivizing them not to work! That is a false and malicious claim. Again, they want to go back to work (as demonstrated by their impassioned protests across our great nation to re-open businesses and the economy). Unfortunately, that is going to take a lot of time (no V-shaped recovery in jobs is forthcoming). During this period, they deserve assistance—not a handout—from the government they’ve supported with their hard work and tax dollars for years and decades.
The elite just doesn’t get it. They don’t understand the raw anger and resentment that is boiling-up in our country over socio-economic inequality (viz., wealth inequality). They live in an elite bubble—an altered reality… one that is entirely detached and decoupled from the real world of the commoners.
As we’ve repeatedly stated, the elite are always the last to recognize and accept an impending systemic collapse of society—and, by the time they finely do, it is almost always too late to avoid it.
They cling to their self-confirming models, trends, and forecasts—the ones that convince them everything is going to be fine for them and their life in the elite bubble. All the while, they are totally oblivious to the fact that they themselves manipulate those models, trends, and forecasts to tell them what they want to hear. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy and, sadly, a graveyard spiral.
If Trump and the Republicans don’t quickly figure out that cutting off aid to millions of middle-class Americans is political, economic, and societal suicide, we are going to forever lose the country we know and love.
The storm clouds are gathering. What we’ve experienced so far has merely been the leading edge of a monster storm system—a gust front so to speak. We are not on the downhill slide of this crisis… the powerful tsunami wave of calamity has not even crested, let alone crashed over us yet!
The time for getting prepared is now—and it has almost run out. Don’t miss this opportunity to ensure that you and your family are as prepared as possible for whatever this perfect storm brings our way.
Hope for the best, prepare for the worst, and—in all things—pray!