From AEI, another helpful corrective for the common claim that American incomes have stagnated, this…
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Image of the Day: Yes, Incomes Have Risen

From AEI, another helpful corrective for the common claim that American incomes have stagnated, this one incorporating the fact that the average size of households has declined over recent decades:

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="1309"] Median Incomes[/caption]

 …[more]

September 20, 2019 • 09:16 am

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Under “Existential Threat” Trump, American Optimism Continues to Surge Print
By Timothy H. Lee
Thursday, May 09 2019
[T]he lowest levels of optimism during the Trump tenure exceed the norm during the Obama years.

Since at least June 16, 2015, when Donald Trump announced his White House candidacy, we’ve been warned that he poses a threat to our very existence. 

Yet here we are four years later, somehow surviving. 

Our inexplicable endurance, however, hasn’t interrupted the hyperbole and histrionics.  Listen to celebrated plagiarist and gaffe geyser Joe Biden mere days ago, announcing his own White House candidacy by asserting that Trump poses a threat “unlike any I’ve ever seen in my lifetime”: 

If we give Donald Trump eight years and the White House, he will forever and fundamentally alter the character of this nation, who we are, and I cannot stand by and watch that happen. The core values of this nation, our standing in the world, our very democracy, everything that has made America America is at stake. 

Biden was born in 1942, so we’re to believe that Trump constitutes a greater threat than the Axis menace in World War II?  Greater than the Soviet Union throughout five decades of Cold War?  Than the Cuban Missile Crisis?  Even greater than global cooling global warming climate change, that other fashionable “existential threat?” 

Not to be outdone, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D – California) sounded the same alarm during the same week.  “It’s an existential threat,” she said, “this administration, to our democracy, in terms of the Constitution.” 

Amusing stuff, coming from two people whose party increasingly supports such threats to the Constitution as eliminating the Electoral College and repealing the Second Amendment. 

Regardless, there’s an even more salient flaw in these incessant admonitions of the existential threat that Trump poses. 

Namely, American public optimism continues to surge in ways unseen throughout the Obama-Biden years despite the hysterics and pleadings of people like Biden, Pelosi and Rachel Maddow.  However unpopular Donald Trump might be as a person, the fact is that public optimism immediately improved after his election, and remains elevated.

Last week, for the first time since 2006, Rasmussen Reports announced that a majority of Americans believe that “America’s best days are in the future”: 

Americans are feeling better about the future than they have in over 12 years of regular surveying.  The latest Rasmussen Reports survey finds that 54% of likely U.S. voters now say America’s best days are in the future.  This is the first time a majority of voters has expressed this sentiment in surveying since November 2006.  The previous high was 47% in December 2016, just after Donald Trump’s election.  But in most surveys over the last 12-plus years, the number of voters who felt America’s best days still lie ahead ran in the mid- to upper-30s.  Only 28% now think the country’s best days are in the past, a new low. 

Sorry, Joe.  That’s got to hurt. 

In even worse news for Biden and the 19 dwarfs competing with him for the Democratic nomination in 2020, that survey isn’t an outlier. 

Specifically, each week Rasmussen Reports asks respondents whether they believe the U.S. is on the right track or wrong track.  When Barack Obama and Joe Biden entered the White House in January 2009, amid promises of “Hope” and “Change,” just 27% of Americans believed the nation was on the right track. 

By the first week of May 2009, that right track reading barely managed to reach the 40% plateau, but it quickly returned to depressed levels.  By December 2009, the right track number was back down to 29%.  The Obama-Biden malaise had settled in. 

For the remainder of their term, the right track percentage occasionally nudged into the 30% range, but generally remained in the 20s or even the teens, with just one momentary return to the 40% mark following the 2012 election.  Then it was back to normal for the remainder of the Obama-Biden term.  For the entirety of the Obama-Biden tenure, you can count on one hand the number of times the nation’s right track reading hit 40%. 

“Hope and Change,” we hardly knew ye. 

Despite the unrelenting sky-is-falling drumbeat from traditional media and entertainment voices, the Trump Administration has provided a dramatic contrast. 

For the week following Trump’s inauguration, Rasmussen’s right track reading surged upward to 47%, and has remained in the 30s and 40s almost without exception since. 

Whereas you can count the number of 40% right track readings throughout the Obama-Biden years on a single hand, and readings in the 20s constituted the norm, you can also count the number of 20s right track readings since Trump’s inauguration on one hand.  On just two fingers, in fact – a 29% reading for August 20 – 24, 2017, and 29% for the week of September 24-28 of that year. 

In other words, the lowest levels of optimism during the Trump tenure exceed the norm during the Obama years. 

Gallup’s right direction/wrong direction survey reveals the same contrast.  Throughout the Obama-Biden years, Gallup’s reading hovered in the 20s and teens, with only rare and momentary appearances in the 30s.  Since Trump’s inauguration, however, dips into the 20s have proven the exception rather than the norm. 

From what is arguably the healthiest economy in the nation’s history to a more muscular foreign policy, the Trump Administration has obviously revived Americans’ long-dormant optimism.  

As for Biden, his apparent campaign theme will be encouraging Americans to return to what constituted “normalcy” throughout the Obama-Biden years.  One wonders, however, how well pessimism and malaise will sell in 2020. 

Question of the Week   
On September 17 of which one of the following years was the U.S. Constitution sent to Congress for ratification by the states?
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Quote of the Day   
 
"So, let me get this absolutely straight ...Justin Trudeau, the Prime Minister of Canada and arguably the most woke, virtue-signalling and PC-crazed leader in the history of Mankind -- or 'Peoplekind' as he insisted we rename it last year - turns out to have a rather cracked halo?Wow. I'm so shocked ...not.I've not met a high-horse rider yet who doesn't eventually tumble off into a pit of shameless…[more]
 
 
—Piers Morgan, Daily Mail
— Piers Morgan, Daily Mail
 
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