The following commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet's guest contributor program, which is separate from the company's news coverage.NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The Commerce Department reported the economy grew at a 2.2% annual rate the first quarter of 2012, slower than the 3.0% pace registered the previous period. The consensus forecast was 2.5%, while my forecast was exactly on mark at 2.2%. GDP growth was powered by much stronger consumer spending -- especially on autos and recreational vehicles -- substantial additions to business inventories and stronger residential construction. Also, business investments in machinery and software contributed a bit too. Reductions in government spending, nonresidential construction and a slightly widening trade deficit subtracted from growth. Apple's Doomed? More Than One Person Thinks So >> The deficits on oil and with China account for nearly the entire $621 billion trade deficit -- nearly 4% of GDP. Cutting these in half, through changes in energy and trade policy, would increase GDP, including multiplier effects, by some $500 billion and create 5 million jobs.