This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Friday, November 9. 2018:
Jewish comedian Woody Allen liked to quote the Yiddish proverb, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.” Jewish Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg should have listened to Woody. In July she gave a not so oblique hint that she would stay on the Supreme Court as long as she could in order to keep President Trump from replacing her with a conservative: ““I’m now 85. My senior colleague Justice John Paul Stevens … he stepped down when he was 90. So I think I have about five more years.”
God may have other plans. On Wednesday evening, Ginsburg was working in her office when she fell and broke three ribs. At this writing, she remains in the hospital for treatment and recovery. In the past, she has had a series of health problems: she fell and broke two ribs in 2012. She has had two previous bouts with cancer and had a stent implanted to open a blocked artery in 2014.
Ginsburg’s death or retirement during Trump’s presidency would allow him to appoint still another conservative to the bench, perhaps long before 2020.
That’s likely to be the legacy from Tuesday’s midterm elections. Trump’s remarkable efforts to expand the Republican majority in the Senate is going to make it easier and more certain that his picks not only for the Supreme Court in the event of Ginsburg’s demise or retirement but for the dozens of other inferior court appointments currently languishing at the Senate’s Judiciary Committee will be confirmed.
Wall Street rejoiced on Wednesday when investors realized that the outcome of Tuesday’s election would result in gridlock. As analysts from Bank of America Merrill Lynch noted before the election, “Gridlock (nothing done, nothing undone) might not be a bad outcome, and has historically been a good environment for stocks.”
Historically, the year following a gridlocked Congress has been good for stocks, averaging gains of 12 percent. Wednesday’s gain of two percent across all the major averages, and Thursday’s continuing rally, though modest, is a harbinger for a repeat into the next year.
Thanks to gridlock, the president’s second round of tax cuts is DOA. Infrastructure spending is fraught with danger for the Democrats. They’d like to spend the money but they don’t want to help Trump’s reelection chances in 2020. They’d rather try to impeach him for various reasons – his firing of James Comey for political reasons, another look at the 87 communications the Trump campaign had in 2016 with Russians, a peek at his tax returns to find how he might have enriched himself or his family by doing business with foreign interests – but that won’t go anywhere as the president won’t sign anything unless those investigations are ended before they begin.
What the House Democrats are left with is “drug pricing” and “ethics reform,” according to the likely new Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, speaking at a Democrat celebration event on Tuesday night. Taking on Big Pharma and imposing ethics reform in the House looks to Gary North as just “an enormous amount of noise … sound and fury, signifying nothing.” North added: “Ethics reform? Coming from Congress? We know [that] will be successful!”
Unless the House Democrats play nice (give up their plans to investigate and impeach Trump in exchange for Trump’s signature on the $1.5 trillion infrastructure bill) Trump will use his Twitter blowtorch to light them up for the next two years. His targets would likely include not only Nancy Pelosi but Jerrold Nadler, Adam Schiff, and Maxine Waters as well.
What else will the House Democrats do with their minuscule majority? Impeachment would go nowhere in the Senate, and would only infuriate Trump supporters who turned the Blue Wave into a pale blue ripple on Tuesday. They’d certainly like to get to the bottom of why Trump fired James Comey and why his campaign had 87 communications with the Russians. They’d like to know if he or his family benefitted in any way by doing business with “foreign interests,” but that’s only going to happen if they successfully subpoena his income tax records. And that effort will result in lawsuits that will take years to settle, long after the issue has become moot.
There were other reasons Wall Street was happy. Without additional stimulus through more tax cuts or increased government spending, the economy is likely to come off its recent highs, improving the chances that the Fed will back off its attempts to slow it through further interest rate hikes. As Michael Azone, chief investment strategist for State Street Global Advisors, told MarketWatch: “Perhaps gridlock makes further rate hikes from the Fed less likely … under gridlock that’s likely to end sooner rather than later.”
And the rumors that Trump and the communists running China are slowly coming to more favorable trade terms helped the rally as well.
Coincidences like Tuesday’s win for Trump in the Senate followed almost immediately by Ginsburg’s fall beggar explaining other than this: God has His plans to restore the American Republic and He’s likely not going to let her plans to outlast President Trump’s first term get in the way.
The Wall Street Journal: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Is Hospitalized After Fall
The Washington Post: The suspicious political timing of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s retirement comments
The Wall Street Journal: Dow Surges Nearly 550 Points
BusinessInsider.com: ‘Welcome to gridlock’: Stock traders cheer, dollar investors jeer US midterm results
The Financial Times: Congressional gridlock? Financial markets are fine with it
LewRockwell.com: What Will the Dems Do With Their New House?