12 May 2021

NOTE FROM NORM: Not A Surplus, It’s A Deficit

The headline in Politico blared: “California has a staggering $75.7B budget surplus.”

It should have read: “California taxpayers have a staggering $75.7B income deficit.”

California has collected so much of its resident’s money that the Democratic Governor of the State Gavin Newsom has decided to redistribute the wealth of the people he took the money from in the first place.

I am sure it has absolutely nothing to do with the fact he is under threat of being recalled by the people of his state.

Elections have consequences, and we already see it at the national level with Democrats in charge of the White House, the Senate, and the House of Representatives.  Despite the nation having climbed out of the worst of a global pandemic, Democratic politicians continue to insist on priming the pump.

That pump, fueled by our tax dollars, are being spent in ways that disincentivize people to work, which in turn is causing economic disruption to American businesses – small, medium, and large – which in turn is delaying a return to the kind of economic growth the county was experiencing before the global outbreak of COVID-19.

Because of the excessive spending proposed by President Biden and shoved through by his slim Democratic majorities in Congress, the former Treasury Secretary under Barack Obama, and a leading voice for economics within the Clinton Administration, Lawrence H. Summers, warned of higher inflation and higher prices for Americans.

In a New York Times article, Summers, who is nobody’s economic conservative, warned that Democrat’s insistence that pump keep being primed would be devastating.

“Mr. Summers, in particular has kept them up since the legislation passed, saying it was too much on the heels of large spending packages last year. He recently called the approach the “least responsible” fiscal policy in 40 years while predicting that it had a one-in-three chance of precipitating higher inflation and maybe stagflation, or a one-in-three chance of causing the Fed to raise rates and pushing the economy toward recession.”

What are we now seeing?  Higher prices.  Higher inflation.  An economy that can’t get full traction because people won’t work because the government pays them more not to work and a production pipeline that is drying up because raw materials and goods can’t get to factories to make products that people want to buy.

Inflation has risen to a 13-year high, consumer prices have leapt 4.2% and according to the website www.usinflationcalculator.com the average price of food has risen 3.5% this year alone.

According to the United States Department of Agriculture the average price for a gallon of milk is $3.58, for a loaf of bread $2.50 and the current average price for a gallon of gas is $3.00. Look for $4.00 a gallon gas by summer.


Between March 2020 and March 2021, the price of meat rose by 5.8 percent, poultry 4.4 percent, and fish and seafood 5.2 percent.

Surging lumber prices alone have pushed the price of an average new single-family home $35,872 higher, according to an analysis by the National Association of Home Builders.


As bad as it is there’s no end in sight for what appears to be increased costs on everything from a gallon of milk to a loaf of bread to a hamburger at your favorite fast-food joint.


Despite the overwhelming evidence, including a recent jobs report that was supposed to show a growth of 1 million new jobs register less than a quarter of that mount, the Biden Administration, egged on by the Bernie Sanders wing of his party which, to be honest, now controls most of the Democratic policy initiatives in Congress, insists we need to spend more money.

Minnesota, the state I live in, has its own budget surplus but is going to add to that surplus with billions more in federal government (taxpayers!) money, and legislators and the Governor are fighting over how to spend it.

Worse yet, if Democrats in Minnesota get their way, they will pass a budget with billions more in spending, creating long-term tails which will require massive tax increases in the future to sustain their obsession with spending whatever money comes their way.

The United States government had an appropriate role and obligation in the early and middle stages of the global pandemic to do what needed to be done to keep a roof over people’s head and food on their table.  Its duty was to protect the American people’s health, safety, and security and to do what had to be done to stabilize our national economy.

Once the crisis was past and let’s be clear the crisis has been subsiding for months now the federal government needed to begin keeping its nose out of the economy and let the market do what the market is supposed to do:  Grow, create jobs, and expand economic opportunity for all Americans.

But not this White House or Congress.  On the contrary they have become hooked to the politics of crisis and have overleveraged it to such an extent that they may indeed collapse the very economy that survived a global pandemic.

The people who will get hurt in America as inflation and prices on everything from gas to groceries to medicine to entertainment increases are not rich and wealthy that Democrats proclaim to abhor.

It will be the poor and the middle-class that Democrats proclaim to embrace.

We are a tipping point in America today with respect to our economy and the whims and desires of Democratic politicians from City Councilmember to State Legislator to Governor to Congress to the President.  They have adopted the philosophy that big government is no longer big enough to accomplish their goals and objectives.

Unfortunately, the bigger the government the smaller the paycheck of a greater number of hard-working Americans.

It’s not the rich that should be worried about the growth of government in America that makes it more profitable not to work than it does to work.

It’s the poor and the middle-class who will see fewer and fewer jobs as more and more businesses have to shut their doors as government grows larger, the tax bill more onerous and the opportunity for economic growth diminish exponentially.