The past few weeks have been, quite literally, among the most disastrous in American history. Within that span, Americans were beset by the wrath of three powerful hurricanes: Harvey, Irma, and Maria, all three of which were devastating. As if unconcerned by natural disasters, we also continue, hell-bent, to create them ourselves. In DC, the government has ascended to a new plateau of gridlock in which neither party can present a coherent plan, much less negotiate with the other side of the aisle, much much less actually get anything passed. Finally, there was the October 1 mass shooting in Las Vegas to turn our consternation to horror.
An argument could be made that the wheels are coming off the world, but any such argument would be unsound. From time to time, the US Bureau of Economic Analysis releases or revises its reports on US Gross Domestic Product. This is a measure of total economic activity, and as such, might be considered one of the main ways in which the world communicates to us the condition of its wheels. On September 30, the BEA revised its estimate of US Second quarter GDP growth up to 3.1%. Translation: ain’t nothing wrong with these wheels—in fact, they’re turning at a rate Americans haven’t seen in nearly a generation.
If this rate can be maintained, it will mean the return of real prosperity, but can it?