The election by the Electoral College of Donald Trump signals a global change in the symbiotic relationship between the policies of government versus those of business. Since the advent of the Industrial Revolution and up to the stock market crash of 1929, business had more or less free reign. With the election of Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1932 came the New Deal and the writings of economist John Maynard Keynes. The Depression brought about the need for government to intervene in order to provide economic solutions to the problems afflicting the nation, such as unemployment at more than 30 percent.
World War II then occurred, which gave even greater impetus to the economy.
Notwithstanding Dwight Eisenhower’s admonishment in 1961, to “beware of the military-industrial complex,” the economy continued to flourish throughout the 1950s.
With our second crash in 2007, government had to once again intervene with a bailout program to save private industry. While arch conservatives complain of overregulation by government, they ignore the fact that government has been helpful to them.
The regulations about which they complain can be excessive but at the same time they represent a necessary balance between government policies both social and financial; and, the unbridled power of private enterprise. Today, instead of maintaining that balance we are going to a bottom line mentality, where all policies are determined on the basis of costs and profits. We are abandoning the principle that all economic policies have a social component within them.
The Trump change is that all social problems can be solved by having strong economic policies. The new philosophy is bolder than the Trickle Down Economics of Ronald Reagan. When Mr. Trump says to minorities: “What do you have to lose?” the answer is quite a lot. In fact, already much has been lost. What has been lost is the pride that so many felt when a bright, able and caring African American was elected President. The repeal of his legislation and Executive Orders essentially means that his legacy is being wiped out, as if it never existed. This is more than an insult. It is another racist attack against President Obama and all that he accomplished or tried to accomplish. To his credit he never retaliated by calling these racists out for what they truly are. He has been presidential and a gentleman, showing far more class than these upstarts. He was never given a fair shot by the white supremacists or the arch-conservatives within or outside of government. The new regime will favor an economy based upon fossil fuels. Global warming for them is a non-issue. They cater to a southern, mid-western ideology which if he had not been successful, Trump would have channeled into another Civil War. Instead of slavery, this Civil War would be fought to Make America Great Again by returning to the laissez-fare economics of Adam Smith and the early stages of the Industrial Revolution.