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Robert Wright’s review of my book captures the essence of my journey in America.
“There is a right way and a wrong way, always choose the right way.” Abraham Sabrin (1914-2001)
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, (sic) promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America. Preamble to the Constitution
Even though President Nixon imposed wage-price controls on August 15, 1971 and severed the last link between the dollar and gold, Republicans have asserted they are the party of limited government and fiscal responsibility. Nothing could be further from the truth.
For more than 50 years I have watched the GOP claim the mantle of fiscal prudence, a myth that was dispelled by Murray Rothbard here and here. In fact, Rothbard demolished Nixon’s economic policies in a New York Times op-ed in September 1971.
The two Bush presidencies (1989-1993 and 2001-2009) and Trump’s spending spree and debt orgy (2017-2021) made Democrats look like fiscal conservatives. With Republicans like this in the White House, who needs wild eyed Democrats in the Oval Office?
The “bumps” in federal spending are clear: in the early 1990s and 2008 during the housing bubble burst. Under Trump spending took off during Covid. His lockdown policy was the cause of the unconscionable spending. Biden is not off the hook. His spending record is less irresponsible than Trump’s but still reckless.
Even in today’s Wall Street Journal GOP presidential candidate Mike Pence asserts “I am an unapologetic conservative who believes that strong national defense, limited government and traditional values must guide our nation as much today as they have guided our party for the past 50 years (emphasis added).
Pence is no student of political history. Republicans have been the big spenders since Nixon was elected in 1968. That is the historical record.
And just the other day, Florida Republican US Senator Rick Scott decried the lack of federal aid to his state’s citrus growers. In his op-ed Scott asserted, “Families in our state aren’t looking for a handout, they are hoping to recover.” And “One of the most important roles of the federal government is to provide relief and support recover in the wake of disaster.”
Senator Scott, who took an oath to defend the Constitution, obviously has not read or ignored the Preamble to the founding governing document cited above. The Preamble summarizes the mission of the newly constituted federal government and Article I, Sec. 8 outlines the specific authorized activities. Nowhere in the Constitution is “disaster aid” an authorized activity.
The best way to deal with natural disasters is for potential victims to pool their resources in the event a hurricane, flood, tornado, etc., that may impact their communities. Private insurance and mutual aid societies are the right way to help people and businesses in distress—the Abraham Sabrin principle.
When Nixon imposed economic controls more than 50 years ago, I concluded America has one party—the Washington Party, which pundits today call the Uniparty. I will stick with my characterization because the Washington Leviathan is the result of the insatiable appetite by both Democrats and Republicans to spend without regard to the day of reckoning that will arrive sooner than virtually all analysts believe will occur.
RECESSION WATCH: The uptick in the unemployment rate last month is probably the beginning of the recession I forecast would begin now. See my 2021 forecast linked below.
My latest piece on the economy was published in Fortune, https://fortune.com/2023/03/27/ -2023-layoffs-tech-finance-unemployment-outlook-fed-rates-murray-sabrin/ This is an update of my 2021 forecast, https://fortune.com/2021/12/09/next-recession-heres-everything-bubble-markets-2021-2022-covid-murray-sabrin/
Murray Sabrin, PhD, is emeritus professor of finance, Ramapo College of New Jersey. Dr. Sabrin is considered a “public intellectual” for writing about the economy in scholarly and popular publications. His new book, The Finance of Health Care: Wellness and Innovative Approaches to Employee Medical Insurance (Business Expert Press, Oct. 24, 2022), and his other BEP publication, Navigating the Boom/Bust Cycle: An Entrepreneur’s Survival Guide (October 2021), provides decision makers with tools needed to help manage their businesses during the business cycle. Sabrin’s autobiography, From Immigrant to Public Intellectual: An American Story, was published in November, 2022.