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Long IslandColumnistsDan Janison

Talk of 'Trump slump' spreads as his boasting turns into blame

Traders at the New York Stock Exchange on

Traders at the New York Stock Exchange on Monday saw a massive sell-off. Some call it the "Trump slump" becausee it wipes out gains the president claimed credit for. Credit: Getty Images/Spencer Platt

Sooner or later in government, as elsewhere, a kind of balance sheet appears.

President Donald Trump credited himself as the creator of a strong economy, hailing the stock market as proof.

After Monday's implosion on Wall Street, he looks quite silly for having done so.

No head of state really controls the economy. But with his reelection campaign underway, and #TrumpSlump now viral, the time for deniability is long gone.

"The markets have been way overpriced for a number of years and were going to, at some point, crack," Martin Melkonian, a Hofstra University economics professor, told Newsday's Ken Schachter on Friday.

Melkonian said companies were buoyed by cuts in the corporate tax rate and by Federal Reserve policies that are "pumping new money into the system."

In October, the International Monetary Fund issued a report warning that U.S. companies were courting financial risk by making record payouts in the form of shareholder dividends and share buybacks, Schachter reported.

Scream for credit, and you invite blame.

President Woodrow Wilson's 1916 slogan "He Kept Us Out of War" vanished instantly when, once reelected, he got us into war.

Trump's messaging on coronavirus has been schizoid, an effort to downplay bad health news while claiming it's somehow the last guy's fault or that of the opposing party.

Trump isn't to blame for an illness, but a churlish response is not likely to reflect well on his leadership once the crisis ends.

As markets tanked, the president was tweeting: "The Obama/Biden Administration is the most corrupt Administration in the history of our Country!"

No, this was not a Trump tweet from 2016 or before, when his bile could go unaccounted for. He posted it Monday at 7:40 a.m. — in the wake of his impeachment and possibly on the cusp of a recession.

Trump touts his personal ties to the Saudi kingdom. He also makes a show of dismissing those who see Russia’s Vladimir Putin as sticking it to the United States more than ever.

Over the weekend, Russia and Saudi Arabia got into a high-stakes battle over oil production. Did Trump's presumed goodwill chits on both sides do the country any good?

No sign of it so far. The United States appears passive and sidelined.

For public consumption, Trump cheers low gasoline prices.

But as for the negative impact on U.S. energy businesses, which face debt problems from the price drop, we'll presumably just have to see what happens.

Fair or not, the term “Trump slump” is growing in use on his beloved social media.

Less than two weeks ago, presidential son Eric Trump tweeted: "In my opinion, it’s a great time to buy stocks or into your 401(k). I would be all in … let’s see if I’m right …"

Real crises don’t get spun and excused away no matter who lives in the White House. Another fierce rally chant and name-calling Democrats won’t clean up the misdirections.

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