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Affluent Investor | April 30, 2017

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Why Does the Economy Feel So Bad?

A large majority of Americans are convinced that the economy is performing quite poorly. But usually after a recession the economy recovers quite quickly, and the deeper the recession, the stronger the recovery. This time is different, because this time we’re different. Our politics have changed in favor of a more European approach, and therefore the results are more European as well: economic growth is stagnant and unemployment is chronically high.

But why do we keep pursuing the failed Euro-model when the evidence is so against it? What is the appeal of the European-style welfare state to the American elite?

Affluent Investor Contributing Editor, Jerry Bowyer was interviewed on this and other important questions on the Glen Meakem’s syndicated radio program. Listen here.

Jerry Bowyer is a Forbes contributor, contributing editor of, and Senior Fellow in Business Economics at The Center for Cultural Leadership.

Jerry has compiled an impressive record as a leading thinker in finance and economics. He worked as an auditor and a tax consultant with Arthur Anderson, as Vice President of the Beechwood Company which is the family office associated with Federated Investors, and has consulted in various privatization efforts for Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. He founded the influential economic think tank, the Allegheny Institute, and has lectured extensively at universities, businesses and civic groups.

Jerry has been a member of three investment committees, among which is Benchmark Financial, Pittsburgh’s largest financial services firm. Jerry had been a regular commentator on Fox Business News and Fox News. He was formerly a CNBC Contributor, has guest-hosted “The Kudlow Report”, and has written for, National Review Online, and The Wall Street Journal, as well as many other publications. He is the author of The Bush Boom and more recently The Free Market Capitalist’s Survival Guide, published by HarperCollins. Jerry is the President of Bowyer Research.

Jerry consulted extensively with the Bush White House on matters pertaining to the recent economic crisis. He has been quoted in the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes Magazine, The International Herald Tribune and various local newspapers. He has been a contributing editor of National Review Online, The New York Sun and Townhall Magazine. Jerry has hosted daily radio and TV programs and was one of the founding members of WQED’s On-Q Friday Roundtable. He has guest-hosted the Bill Bennett radio program as well as radio programs in Chicago, Dallas and Los Angeles.

Jerry is the former host of WorldView, a nationally syndicated Sunday-morning political talk show created on the model of Meet The Press. On WorldView, Jerry interviewed distinguished guests including the Vice President, Treasury Secretary, HUD Secretary, former Secretary of Sate Condoleezza Rice, former Presidential Advisor Carl Rove, former Attorney General Edwin Meese and publisher Steve Forbes.

Jerry has taught social ethics at Ottawa Theological Hall, public policy at Saint Vincent’s College, and guest lectured at Carnegie Mellon’s graduate Heinz School of Public Policy. In 1997 Jerry gave the commencement address at his alma mater, Robert Morris University. He was the youngest speaker in the history of the school, and the school received more requests for transcripts of Jerry’s speech than at any other time in its 120-year history.

Jerry lives in Pennsylvania with his wife, Susan, and the youngest five of their seven children.

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  • Nearly all the ideas and commentary circling the internet and broadcast media can be answered with one simple understanding regarding the economy and markets. It is all held together with the glue of cyber dollars form the massive QE/stimulus that has generated 17-20 trillion in debt and rising. It is all just a giant illusion and the wizards have focused on the markets to try and convince the masses that all is well. Nothing is well at all, and only gets worse.The underlying fundamentals do not lie. Only the politicos and special interest lie. And of course they use completely bogus reportings and false data to keep the ship afloat. IMO none of it is rocket science to figure out, just common sense. The only valid question is how long can the illusions be maintained? That should cause great alarm for many in the markets too heavy. Because there will be an opposite reaction or force, just as there always is. We live in many illusions !

  • Phil Heinricke

    The economy is in a slump because of debt. That sums it up. Western consumers have been the engine of much of the world economy for decades now. When housing tanked, so did the net worth of the middle class. It still hasn’t recovered enough for Westerners to increase spending, and even if housing did recover, it is possible that consumers won’t resume Tammy Fay-ish spending, and then even if they did resume Tammy Fay-ish.
    The Tammy Fay economic model would not last indefinitely any way because it creates an imbalance. The West can only accumulate so much debt. Continuing this dynamic would result in the imbalance increasing until there is another crash. Another dynamic will eventually have to develop. But what? That’s the question.

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