Posted By RichC on October 26, 2018
For those who watch the stock market, today was another one of those October trading days that can give one the willies. It was a reminder of the dreaded Octobers of the past and added to the steepest indices October decline since the 2007-2008 crisis. Still, the economy is sound, company earnings are good (tech stocks might be overvalued?), unemployment low and consumer confidence still in good shape. From my perspective, the U.S. is in far better shape financially than in the past … or than other country. Sure … our deficit and debt remains ridiculously high and there is tension between political parties due to the upcoming mid-term election … and over immigration (the Wall on our southern border), healthcare, taxes, tariffs and trade with China … but these are not new or unknown. Earnings for most U.S. corporations are good, Americans are employed if they want a job and tensions with North Korea and Iran have moderated. Economically … we are in pretty good shape for the time being.
BUT … the divisive sentiment within our citizenry has festered into a political fight between those who oppose President Trump and those who support and voted for his agenda. The strongest opposition to Trump desires a more progressive or even socialist America. Those who support the president, the ones furthest to the right, are boldly nationalistic to the protectionist extreme. Unfortunately these opposing views seem to play themselves out in more than in just political debate or at the ballot box. Protests and verbal spats from these loudest extremes have lead to violence — from Antifa on the extreme left, to Cesar Sayoc on the extreme right (arrested today for sending mail bombs to leading Democrats). Some on the left are blaming the president’s tone and words for stoking aggression in our country, while others on the right see those with the loudest mouthpieces (celebrities, liberal politicians and the mainstream media) continuing to fire up anger and create deep fissures between Americans.
Wouldn’t it be nice to return peaceful protests and to civility in debate again? I personally think that those in academia, Hollywood and the mainstream media have shown their true color and are not arbiters of the truth and neither teach or report the news of the day fairly … and have no problem criticizing President Trump for his inflammatory tweets and tone at rallies. All could do more to tone down the rhetoric, but just because each speaks in opinionated tone, they are not responsible for those who actually do carry out violence.