A Wild and Unwieldy Beast

We must keep in mind, of course, that economic recoveries occur in fits and starts, and that factors of timing and non-economic events play a role in the month-to-month numbers, but we also shouldn’t gainsay the possibility that disappointing results may in part reflect a lack of confidence that has been a byproduct of the declaration that only government can save our ailing economy:

The recession is easing? Not so fast. An unexpected drop in sales of just about everything from cars to clothes sent a sobering message Tuesday: The economy is still vulnerable.
That cautionary guidance was seconded by President Barack Obama and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, though they had encouraging words as well. Bernanke spoke of “tentative signs” that at least the economy is declining more slowly, and Obama repeated his recent analysis that he sees “glimmers of hope.”
With Americans still losing jobs by the thousands, a major fear is that people will cut back even further on their spending, and that could plunge the economy into a sharper tailspin.

It’s not just that people are worried for their own jobs. It could also be that they aren’t sold on the idea of trillion-dollar deficits and stultifying bureaucratic control.

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