British historian and author Paul Johnson accepts the argument that the American economy is improving. As Johnson explains to Forbes readers, he rejects the notion that President Obama had anything to do with the upturn.

This is a natural recovery, not one produced by government intervention. A large capitalist economy operating in a free country has an inherent propensity to work its way out of a recession, provided the people in charge of the country don’t do anything particularly foolish to prevent it.

President Obama can take no credit whatsoever for this. Nothing he’s done has promoted growth, and his actions may even have held it back somewhat. Fortunately his presidency has been so weak, his hesitations so various and prolonged and his changes of mind so frequent that the White House’s actual impact on the workings of the economy has been trifling. Had Mr. Obama been a stronger and more determined man, it’s likely that given his views his interventions would have been destructive, and the U.S. economy would now be in dire distress. The inactivity–or impotence–of the White House is thus, for once, welcome.