President Bush Should Read AngryBear

Brad DeLong accused President Bush of saying blatantly false things to the crowd at a Farm Progress Show in Iowa. The chief complaint was the oft heard claim “fastest growth in 20 years”. DeLong does not call the President a liar as he blames Bush’s staff.

Readers of the Angrybear know AB and Kash do an excellent job of providing reliable information on the economy. On August 20, I wrote:

But then Dr. Krugman notes that the growth over the past year has been less than the growth from mid-1999 to mid-2000. While real GDP in 2004QII was 4.77% higher than it was in 2003QII, real GDP in 2000QII was 4.85% higher than it was in 1999QII. So the line “fastest growth in 20 years” is not true, but I guess “fastest growth since Bush took office” will not play very well.

But I am a bit tardy in noting what Kash noted a week later: “The estimate of GDP growth has been revised down to 2.8% from an initial guess of 3.0%”. So now BEA is reporting real GDP in 2004QII that is only 4.70% higher than it was in 2003QII.

I hope Bush’s speechwriters take notice of this fact so he does not mistakenly claim that we have had the highest growth in 20 years again. But then I’m being optimistic in my hope that the President is less inclined to just flat out lie as the Vice President was last night.