America's Latest Golden Age

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And all across the land, the people had jobs, and worked hard at them, and fed their children, whose faces were all alight and still ruddy from their day at play. And the politicians saw this, and watched the deficit shrinking, and they smiled too, and proffered friendship to each other.

Not exactly your typical day in the U.S.A. But there it is: The unemployment rate was just 4.6 percent in November, the lowest in 24 years. The stock market, which lives in fear of good news on jobs, clenched its teeth and went up anyway. President Clinton says he's meeting with Republican leaders to discuss a tax cut - because if the economy holds up, the 1999 budget may just run a surplus.

Even prickly Dick Gephardt, who really crossed the party line when he trashed both Clinton's policies and his coffee klatch fundraising tactics, has called a truce. The House Minority leader and President agreed during a phone call Thursday night to concentrate on the '98 elections. "It was a very satisfactory talk," Clinton revealed Friday. Gosh. The Golden Age is really here.