I am an Ultra-Conservative, Alpha-Male, True Authentic Leader, Type "C" Personality, who is very active in my community; whether it is donating time, clothes or money for Project Concern or going to Common Council meetings and voicing my opinions. As a blogger, I intend to provide a different viewpoint "The way I see it!" on various world, national and local issues with a few helpful tips & tidbits sprinkled in.
Are you better off now than 4 years ago? Yes or No
Is the country better off now than 4 years ago? Yes or No
We have seen 4 years of Obama. Do you think 4 more years of Obama will be better?
In a time where the Economy and Jobs should have been the most important focus, Obama instead focused on Obamacare!
"When someone doesn't do the job, you gotta let em go" - Clint Eastwood
A Better Future: Wisconsin - Deficit
Gas prices have doubled, incomes have dropped, poverty is headed toward fifty-year highs, and unemployment has been above 8 percent for 42 straight months. Are you better off now than you were four years ago?
$16,000,000,000,000.00 ($16 Trillion)
We’re not better off, so Obama isn’t
We got all sorts of answers. No one could have done better. Of course we are. We will be soon. That’s a silly question.
The answers were obviously contradictory. Tellingly, the president would not say in his acceptance speech that we are better off. Do we really think he would have omitted it if he had been certain the voters would have bought the claim?
With the August jobs numbers and with each report before the November election, the better-off question will be renewed. The jobs gains are not accelerating; they are slowing from the beginning of the year, and if not for the mass exodus from the job market we’d have double-digit unemployment.
Grasping at straws, the Obama spinners rely on two fallacies to try to bolster the president’s better-off claim: George W. Bush caused the financial crash, and only Obama gets credit for stanching the bleeding. Let’s get real.
The financial crash can be laid at the feet of the Federal Reserve Board (fueling the bubble), on President Bill Clinton, who helped deregulate the banking industry, on both parties in Congress (which refused to reel in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and reexamine our national housing policy) and on rating companies and financial wizards who created a system of financial musical chairs that was destined to end badly (Read or re-read Michael Lewis’s Boomerang if you’ve forgotten.) But Bush? He tried to put Fannie and Freddie on a leash, only to be rebuffed by Congress. And no, the Bush tax cuts didn’t cause the housing meltdown. (You can oppose or favor those tax cuts, but they have zero to do with the meltdown triggered by the sudden realization that housing derivatives might not be worth much.)
Better Off? Let's Count the Ways We're Not
Economic Conditions: All weekend, Democratic party leaders kept fumbling their answer to a simple question: Are we better off than we were four years ago? There's a good reason for that: We're not.
It wasn't until Monday that the campaign was able to figure out how to answer the question, with Obama's deputy campaign manager, Stephanie Cutter, saying, "Absolutely."
Obama's argument is simple: The economy was headed for a second Great Depression when he took office — hemorrhaging GDP and jobs. His stimulus, the auto bailouts and so on, prevented that, and the economy has since been slowly digging out of the massive ditch into which President Bush drove it. Thus, Obama says, he deserves an "incomplete" grade.
It's quite a stretch that Obama stopped another depression. The recession ended just five months into his first term, before most of his policies had a chance to take effect. It's an even bigger stretch to say that people's lives have been improving during the 3-year-old Obama "recovery," which started in June 2009.
By most measures the country isn't making slow progress; it's falling further behind. Some examples:
• Median incomes: These have fallen 7.3% since Obama took office, which translates into an average of $4,000. Since the so-called recovery started, median incomes continued to fall, dropping $2,544, or 4.8%.
• Long-term unemployed: More than three years into Obama's recovery, 811,000 more still fall into this category than when the recession ended.
• Poverty: The poverty rate climbed to 15.1% in 2010, up from 14.3% in 2009, and economists think it may have hit 15.7% last year, highest since the 1960s.
Subscribe to the IBD Editorials Podcast • Food stamps: There are 11.8 million more people on food stamps since Obama's recovery started.
• Disability: More than 1 million workers have been added to Social Security's disability program in the last three years.
• Gas prices: A gallon of gas cost $1.89 when Obama was sworn in. By June 2009, the price was $2.70. Today, it's $3.84.
• Misery Index: When Obama took office, the combination of unemployment and inflation stood at 7.83. Today it's 9.71.
• Union membership: Even unions are worse off under Obama, with membership dropping half a million between 2009 and 2011.
• Debt: Everyone is far worse off if you just look at the national debt. It has climbed more than $5 trillion under Obama, crossing $16 trillion for the first time on Tuesday and driving the U.S. credit rating down.
Ironically, the only people better off under Obama are corporate chieftains, who've seen corporate profits climb more than 50% under Obama's "recovery," and investors, who've benefited from a near-doubling in the Dow industrials from its March 2009 lows.