When Donald Trump said last week that he will double the American growth rate, his skeptics scoffed. The left doesn't think 4 percent growth is possible, because they never came close to that target under Barack Obama.
But there's no law of nature or economics that says America is doomed to anemic growth rates. We believe that with the right policy fixes, fast growth is not just possible; it's probable.
In the 1980s, the Reagan agenda had quarterly growth rates of 6, 7 and even 8 percent. Over the course of his administration, the nation created about 2 million jobs per year. Now, that's a recovery! And Trump is right that if India and China can grow at 8 to 10 percent, surely we can aspire to half that growth rate.
Faster growth of the economy is imperative if America is to retain our world super-power status — especially given the new rivalry of fast-growing China. This requires the new Trump plan, which will take American competitiveness seriously.
Here's how Trump will ramp up growth.
First, Trump will enact the biggest pro-growth tax cut since Ronald Reagan's 1981 reform. Trump will simplify the tax code and significantly reduce marginal rates, encouraging investment and economic expansion. His proposed corporate tax rate of 15 percent would make it easier for American firms to repatriate earnings, bringing capital back to these shores.
The House tax bill is similar to Trump's. We can get this through Congress in the first 150 days.
The Tax Foundation says this will add about $150 billion in higher output.
Next, a pro-growth energy policy would develop all of America's abundant resources — oil, natural gas and coal. Trump's plan could make America the world's No. 1 energy producer within five years, producing millions of new jobs and trillions of dollars of extra output — along with new royalty payments to the government. And we will not waste hundreds of billions of dollars subsidizing solar panels. Sorry, Elon Musk.
Even former Bill Clinton campaign manager Jim Carville admitted on Tuesday night that Obamacare is Obama-Gone. It's the fastest-growing entitlement program of all, and it will be replaced with a consumer-choice health plan. This will cut costs for families and businesses by as much as 30 percent.
On the regulatory front, Trump wants to immediately repeal dozens of President Obama's anti-business executive orders. At the top of the stack headed for the dustbin is the Clean Power Plan law that has put tens of thousands of our coal miners out of work.
I am for free trade and don't always agree with Trump on this issue. But he understands that the U.S. needs trade, and he himself said: "I am not an isolationist."
Trump wants to negotiate from a position of strength with countries that steal Americans' intellectual property or compel companies to disclose trade secrets as a condition of entering their markets. Negotiating better trade deals and enforcing the current ones would increase jobs in export industries such as agriculture and technology.
Trump will also bring an America-first, pro-business approach to economic policy. Having someone in the White House who knows how to run a business and meet a payroll has to be a psychological lift for this battered and bruised economy.
The Democrats and their gang of pundits assure us that 4 percent growth cannot and will not happen under President-elect Trump. But let's not forget: These are the same geniuses who have assured us for the last year that there would never be a President Trump. Wrong again.
Stephen Moore is a distinguished visiting fellow at The Heritage Foundation, economics contributor to FreedomWorks and author of "Who's the Fairest of Them All?" To find out more about Stephen Moore and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.