Dawn J. Bennett recently interviewed Dr. Herb London, president of the London Center for Policy Research and Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute, on her nationally syndicated radio show, Financial Myth Busting with Dawn J. Bennett. Dr. London is also an acclaimed social critic whose work has been featured in major newspapers and journals nationwide, including The Wall Street Journal, Fortune, Washington Times, New York Magazine, The New York Times, American Spectator, and National Review.
A recent article from Dr. London called “Why The Forgotten Citizen Elected Donald Trump” is the basis of his interview on Financial Myth Busting with Dawn J. Bennett. In his article, Dr. London explains that these forgotten citizens are experiencing declining employment opportunities, sensing the deterioration of traditional culture, and are understandably resentful and angry.
According to Bennett, there’s a lot of economic despair in the United States, and it is like there are two Americas. One is the happiness and prosperity portrayed by the media, and the second is the vast number of forgotten citizens. She says what’s fascinating to her is that despite the millions of people suffering, they are doing so it solitude and are not the ones marching in the streets.
Dr. London says they aren’t marching in the streets partially because of their despair.
“One of the things that you have to understand is that the level of labor participation in the United States circa 2017 is roughly the same as it was in 1936,” he says. “That means that there are more than 50 million Americans who are idle, who are not in the labor markets. They don’t count in unemployment statistics–they are no longer counted at all.”
He continues, “And they recognize the fact that they aren’t counted economically, and they don’t count socially. These are Americans who are left out of the equation. They are not variables in the American equation, and that is one of the reasons there’s resentment.”
Dr. London explains that they are angry because those who march and are in office don’t concern themselves with the people who are not in their labor market and who no longer count. Everyone is “lost in the swell of interests that are obviously far more important from the standpoint of the New York Times than these people who have forgotten Americans.”
Dr. London says he thinks Trump has the right idea. The proposition of his campaign was that these forgotten Americans need a voice. However, he is unsure whether he is the right person to be the embodiment of that voice, considering his billionaire status.
“We find ourselves in the position where many of the things that Trump was saying, including the infrastructure development that is necessary for America, with the creation of jobs that comes along with it, very, very sound thinking,” he says.
He continues, “There is no doubt that he is thinking about lowering the tax rates so that we get not only simple taxes but so that the rates are lower so that there’s greater incentives for involvement in the economy. And we’ll see economic growth at the three and a half to four percent level. We get up to four percent growth in the United States and many of the problems we have had in the past are largely mitigated. I think that he’s moving in the right direction. Can he sustain that? Hard to say.”