Last week Biden’s Council of Economic Advisors launched a preemptive strike against bad economic news with a blog post on the theme: “What is a recession?” Despite decades of top economists concurring on a definition, Biden’s appointees treat the topic like an arcane metaphysical dispute that requires a “holistic look at the data.”
The New York Post's James Bovard reported instead of admitting the economy is shrinking, Team Biden touts a test indicating that a recession is not underway unless “the three-month moving average of the unemployment rate rises by at least half a percentage point (50 basis points) relative to its lowest point in the previous 12 months.”
“Moving average” is an apt phrase that evokes the circus shell game the Biden folks use to define away their failures, charged Mr. Bovard.
Biden’s advisers boast that the economy is on the path to “steadier and more stable growth,” reported Bovard. However, the leading economic indicators index has fallen four months in a row. The Purchasing Managers Index and services index are both signaling recession. The University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers last month reported the lowest recorded level of consumer confidence ever (going back to 1952). Monday’s Dallas Fed Manufacturing Outlook Level shows rapid and sharp contraction in Texas; one survey respondent lamented that “the economy is in shambles.”
In confirmation of Bovard’s reporting our friends at the Club for Growth alerted us that the Conference Board has released new data showing the Consumer Confidence Index (CCI) has fallen to 95.7, dropping lower than expert predictions and decreasing for the third straight month. This comes as Americans prepare for a Thursday GDP report which is expected to show that the US is in a recession because of Biden’s radical policies.
“As long as Biden and his so-called economic advisers continue to push for massive spending plans and tax increases, Americans will not have confidence in his radical socialist agenda,” said Club for Growth President David McIntosh. “While Biden likes to claim he understands the pain everyday Americans are experiencing, the administration has done nothing to implement the policies we need to restore the average American’s faith in our economy.”
To cover for their failures Biden’s economic advisers stress that judgments on recession depend on “government statistics that are reported at various lags.” Remember that Biden and his appointees denigrate reports with negative data as “old news” while, as James Bovard put it, whooping up any positive data as if it was handed down from Mount Sinai. The first-quarter economic data are ancient history no longer relevant in our glorious era of Biden Benevolence. The second-quarter data, if as bad as expected, will be labeled a fluke.
The economic news is so bad – and obviously so – that even CNN has stopped covering for Biden’s failures… at least on the economy.
Fox News reported a panel on CNN Monday slammed the Biden administration's attempt to change the definition of a recession as incoming GDP numbers may signal an economic downturn.
On "The Lead," CNN anchor Kasie Hunt began the discussion by telling the panel she's "struggling" with what the White House is putting out there.
"I get that why they want to do it from a political perspective, but like, you can't fake this!" Hunt exclaimed.
CNN editor at large Chris Cillizza mocked President Biden for saying "We're not going to be in a recession, in my view" during an exchange with Fox News' Peter Doocy, telling Hunt, "'In my view,' I should be drafted into the NBA."
"It doesn't really matter what you think," Cillizza said. "There is a technical definition, two straight quarters of negative economic growth. They clearly believe that is likely to come to pass later this week. They’re trying to pre-but it."
"We get why they're doing it politically, at the same time, we have these terms for reasons," Cillizza continued. "You don’t have to like it. Of course, they don't like it because, you know, Joe Biden’s handling of the economy was at 25% or 30% in our most recent poll. Yeah, it’s a problem for them - this adds to the problem, but you don’t get to change the nomenclature in the middle of a campaign because it doesn’t work for you."
"And again, voters are gonna feel what they feel in their lives no matter what they say," Hunt added.
Purchasing Managers index
Consumer Confidence Index (CCI)
Biden definition of recession