President Trump came in for much jeering when he told reporters he had “inherited a mess” from President Barack Obama. On the economy, though, Obama did indeed leave behind a hidden mess: a seemingly healthy jobs market dependent on cheap debt.
When this debt bubble bursts, just as the last one did, the manufacturing jobs Trump wants to save will be in even greater peril.
The country’s last bubble was in housing. Between 2000 and 2007, Americans nearly doubled their mortgage debt, from $5.9 trillion to $10.6 trillion.
This didn’t bother anyone in a position of power. The housing boom created millions of jobs, from construction to home-furnishing, and people felt rich.
What bothered the pols was when the illusion broke.