Global Macro Monitor produces informed opinion about markets and the global economy. This was originally published on December 31, 2010


No politics or partisanship here, “just the facts ma’am”.  The stock market as measured by the S&P500 is up just about 50 percent since President Obama’s inauguration to today’s close.   Only Eisenhowser comes close, but not even in the same zip code.   A 50 percent stock move does a lot “spreading the wealth around” and Joe the Plumber’s pension is in much better shape today than it was in November 2008!

Sure, sure, there are a  ton of reasons to explain the differences, but this is politics folks!    A CapEX spending led economic acceleration and pick-up in hiring in 2011, which usually follows such a strong equity performance,  will make the President look unbeatable same time next year, in our opinion.  Stay tuned.


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Category: Investing, Politics, Think Tank

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

15 Responses to “If this is Socialism, call me Comrade”

  1. troubled times says:

    Its enough to make Kudlow cry and than lie. You just watch

  2. BusSchDean says:

    This and highlighting the generally positive impact of TARP (yes, started under Bush but fully managed under Obama) should certainly help. This of course assumes that the Democrats won’t botch their communications — hmmm….ok, maybe we should be just a bit concerned.

    Two quick comments re: earlier posts. 1) appreciate your clear articulation that having resources — even benefiting from disfunctional markets — is separate from observing and criticizing the disfunctionality (I’m am not a hedgefund guy but know for sure having some resources beats the heck out of not having resources); and, 2) appreciate you calling commenters who insist on misrepresenting a fact of history (e.g., Eisenhower’s speech).

  3. TheInterest says:

    You may be right that Obama wins when measured in buy and hold. But I though buy and hold was for suckers? Show me a chart that shows the aggregate point swings and maybe that will show who was the real trader’s President.

  4. Ruschem says:

    Here is the comment I made on Global Monitor’s website:

    Wow. This post almost made me want to go back in time and restore the Soviet Union where I spent first 38 years of my life. Call yourself comrades or anything you want but don’t give me more socialism. Using stock market return as yardstick to prove that policies work and that one president is better than other is plain wrong. Can you say that Bush 41 was a better president than Clinton because stock market grew more? Was Comrade Brezhnev a good communist ruler because the quality of life did improve under his rule. And you know what, I bet the fastest economic growth the Soviet Union and Russia for that matter have ever experienced was under Comrade Stalin. Was he good? He started at a very low point and used all the wrong ideas and methods. But if we only judged by economic growth we should have said that he was the best. If we used the healthcare as measure, Comrade Castro would have been the winner. Not considering the starting point and ways the success was achieved is just wrong. For a fuller picture you should have the unemployment chart included as well.

    As far as Joe the Plumber is concerned, does he even have a 401K? Even if he had one, he might have spent it because he does not have a job. But if he has the savings account he got zero and will be getting zero for a long time. He was robbed for you to enjoy the stock market gains. Here is where we need to start talking socialism. Exact same thing was happening in the Soviet Union. The actual prosperity, including big Swiss bank accounts, was only among the party elite, their families and close friends.

  5. chartist says:

    Kudlow and his supply side economics are full of crapola….Second, middle America has been decimated losing jobs likely gone for good…..Third, O’bama is going to lose on healthcare as costs are rising way too fast….He promised healthcare for all and didn’t deliver.

  6. ZackAttack says:

    The only reflation that matters is real wages.

    The only question now is how many people – directly, and via knock-on effects – that QE winds up killing.

  7. diogeron says:


    If the U.S. fails to join the rest of the first world in having universal health care, it won’t be because Obama didn’t try. Personally, my wish is for the Supremes to declare the mandatory purchase of insurance from private companies unconstitutional, thereby resurrecting the “public option” which should have been passed in the first place. Of course, with the GOP controlling the House and the 60 vote rule in the Senate, it won’t happen in the next two years.

    Insofar as the S&P goes, the chart is telling but it’s not the key to Obama’s re-election. To paraphrase Carville, “It’s unemployment, stupid.” If unemployment is still near 10%, the Rs would have to nominate some brainless twit like Palin for Obama to win. If unemployment significantly better, Obama is re-elected. Incumbents almost always win a second term barring (a) a lousy economy (b) a tough primary fight which splits the party so badly that the partisans don’t regroup in time for the general election and/or (c) a serious third party challenge, aka Ross Perot.

  8. common-sense says:

    Happy New Year, BR! David Clayton Thomas sang it best:

    “What goes up must come down
    spinning wheel got to go round
    Talking about your troubles it’s a crying sin
    Ride a painted pony
    Let the spinning wheel spin

    You got no money, and you, you got no home
    Spinning wheel all alone
    Talking about your troubles and you, you never learn
    Ride a painted pony
    let the spinning wheel turn

    Did you find a directing sign
    on the straight and narrow highway?
    Would you mind a reflecting sign
    Just let it shine within your mind
    And show you the colors that are real…”

    I’m trying to decide whether the spinning wheel –in the context of this discussion — represents a roulette wheel, or the cylinder on a .357 magnum. Playing red or black is the same as loading every other chamber. It’s a gamble…a gamble like stacking the S&P deck — pushing it up in similar fashion to the housing market (bubble) — in the hope that it’s nothing more than a confidence problem that can be overwhelmed by sheer numbers (sheer cliff?). And just like the housing market, it can’t go down, right…? Problem is, it won’t work forever and when the ride stops, there will be a lot of carnage. Who’s gonna bail them out, or is it just an accepted norm now that a bailout is status quo. So it’s “risk ON” and balls to the wall.

    Socialism doesn’t scare me right now, corporate fascism does.

    “Someone is waiting just for you
    spinning wheel is spinning true
    Drop all your troubles, by the river side
    Catch a painted pony
    On the spinning wheel ride”

  9. oulous says:


    I think the market being up at great cost to the middle class and future tax payers is not worth it. I may have increased my assets and engorged my accounts but I don’t care for this version of the game. If big banks can have an impossible 100% win rate in a quarter then they are cheating in a way that destroys any hope of a level playing field.

    The cost is enormous for the performance you and I are generating. I prefer when the market better reflects the reality of economic health.

    I don’t think the big picture of how we have run our economy from Reagen to now deserves accolades. We are destroying the great fabric of innovation.

  10. HistorySquared says:

    The best performing stock market over the last several decades is Zimbabwe. Ya, for zimbabwe politics! The stock market is only a proxy for the real economy when it’s not distorted.

    Why aren’t we celebrating the explosion in health care, commodities, education, and everywhere else Central Planning has distorted the economy. Ya for socialism indeed. :/

  11. Dow says:

    What’s the difference between the ‘stock market’ and Versailles? None as far as I can tell. As long as the nobles are doing well, the starving peasants don’t exist.

    This story doesn’t end so well…

  12. Jojo says:

    Great comment Ruschem! 15 million people remain unemployed, a large and growing percentage for more than 18 months, but with shoppers flocking to replace old junk with new junk and the stock market pushing two year highs, the masters of the universe are happy as pigs in mud.

    Check out this regular weekly collection of economic/political funnies here:

  13. ZackAttack says:

    Good thing our benevolent leaders spent $3 trillion on our behalf. If they hadn’t, assets might’ve fallen by, hell, a couple of $trillion.

  14. mark says:

    Here’s a fact you might want to consider:

    “suppose that from here on out we average 4.5 percent growth, which is way above any forecast I’ve seen. Even at that rate, unemployment would be close to 8 percent at the end of 2012″

    Check out the chart that accompanies the above quote:

    Your implied call for average GDP growth over the next two years seems a little on the high side to say the least.

  15. victor says:

    Very good indeed Ruschem!!! Cannot find anything wrong in your comment whatsoever. Right on!!! The only thing I might add, is that SOCIALISM in the US is well and alive, but it is American style, not even Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Castro, Chavez etc thought of it this way: privatize the profits and socialize the losses, now that’s the real thing! You don’t even need a Gulag for it to work!!