But there's a reason we economists always remind people that the stock market isn't the economy and the economy isn't the market. In the short run, the stock market's success tells you little about the soundness of policy decisions made by people in Washington. The reality is that one day, all that debt, cronyism, and lack of accountability will explode in our faces. It might take some time, but when the time draws near, don't assume that interest rates will alert us to the impending disaster or that the Fed can save us without inflicting massive pain.
When we look back and wonder how we got there, we will see that there is a lot of blame to go around. By recklessly monetizing the public debt and suppressing interest rates, the Federal Reserve allowed deficit spending to become the norm. The party of small government, meanwhile, simply gave up the small part. Congressional Republicans remained mostly silent while the Trump administration ran up the public debt by nearly $9 trillion in just four years, slowed down the economy with protective tariffs, and imposed disgusting and costly immigration restrictions. Some Republicans offered their own central planning proposals in the name of fighting China; others endorsed plans for a federal paid leave law and a universal basic income for kids.