Trump has racked up thousands of lies in his short tenure in the White House — but his most recent statement about the economy essentially managed to squeeze 64 lies into a single tweet.
Trump falsely claimed that U.S. GDP growth (which was 4.2 percent last quarter) is higher than the country’s unemployment rate (currently 3.9 percent) for the first time in more than 100 years.
Like much of what Trump says, this is flatly untrue. But even for Trump, it’s a whopper of epic proportions.
The Washington Post points out that since World War II, “GDP has topped the unemployment rate 64 times.”
Trump’s statement would be a lie even if GDP had topped unemployment just once in the past century.
But it hasn’t happened just once, or twice, or even 20 times. It has happened 64 times in the last 70 years.
In one tweet, Trump lied about every single one of those 64 years.
For what it’s worth, GDP was higher than unemployment as recently as 12 years ago, under the George W. Bush administration. It also happened several times under President Clinton.
President Obama inherited the Great Recession from Bush, and spent eight years rebuilding the economy from the brink of disaster, so it’s no surprise that the phenomenon did not happen during his two terms.
By inheriting a growing economy from President Obama, Trump started his tenure on third base and thinks he hit a triple.
But as the Post’s Philip Bump explained, it doesn’t even make sense in the first place for Trump to specifically brag about the unemployment rate being lower than the GDP.
“One is a rate of change; one is a metric, which is a bit like saying the Chicago Bears are doing better than the Green Bay Packers because their score increased 100 percent from the second to third quarters while the Packers have only 75 percent of the points,” Bump wrote.
Trump isn’t just inventing ahistorical alternative facts — he’s comparing apples to checkers.
And Trump is “desperately cherry-picking the data” in other ways, Bump explained. Trump used GDP growth from the spring of 2018 (April through June), but unemployment data from the late summer, August 2018.
Meanwhile, Trump and Republicans are doing their best to sabotage this supposedly great economy.
The GOP exploded the deficit to enact a tax scam that showers billions of dollars onto the wealthy elite while leaving the middle class behind. More than 80 percent of the scam’s benefits go to the richest 1 percent, but half of Americans will eventually see their taxes increase.
While the unemployment number is good, wages for middle-class families are falling. And while the stock market is doing well, more than 90 percent of stocks are owned by the richest 20 percent of households.
As Trump tells epic lies to brag about the state of the economy, millions of Americans are still struggling just to make ends meet.
Published with permission of The American Independent.