Friday, October 31, 2008

Obama's economic mythology

Great column by Steve Chapman that counters some of the doom-mongering you hear from the campaign trail:
Everywhere you look, you see Americans shopping and buying. Vast expanses of land that used to harbor corn or cattle now provide a home for shopping centers that go on forever. In 1988, Wal-Mart had 1,200 stores. Today, it has 3,800. Americans bought 24 percent more new cars and trucks in 2007 than in 1990.

All sorts of products that didn't exist a generation ago are now commonplace even in humble neighborhoods -- personal computers, cell phones, high-definition TVs, Polartec jackets, digital cameras, Starbucks coffee and more. If their incomes are steadily falling, how do Americans cart home so much stuff?
Read the whole thing. But really, isn't this in some respect fairly obvious? Would anyone actually want to go back to the lifestyle we had in 1978? 1988? 1998?

You know, it's kind of odd to me that the candidate of hope has a message that largely consists of "Your life sucks. I will fix it."

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