Saturday, September 29, 2012

What Price Hope & Change?

While listening to the news earlier this week I was surprised by a statistic tossed out by the host of a popular talk radio program regarding the economy under Barack Obama.  Even though I'm not a fan of the current President, I found the claims hard to believe.  So I did a little "fact checking" of my own.  Some of what I found was startling, to say the least.

Consider the following economic statistics (all government numbers):

When Barack Obama entered the White House, the average price of a gallon of gasoline nationwide was $1.85.  Today, it is $3.59.  This amounts to an average increase of more than $950 per year for gas alone! [Note: This is for each car. The average American household spent a staggering $4,155 on gasoline during 2011.]

Back in 2007, about 10 percent of all unemployed Americans had been out of work for 52 weeks or longer.  Today, that number is above 30 percent!  The official U.S. unemployment rate has been above 8 percent for more than 40 months in a row.

When Barack Obama first took office there were 2.7 million long-term unemployed Americans.  Today there are twice as many.

Today there are more than 88 million working age Americans that are not employed and that are not even looking for employment.  That is an all-time record high.  Overall, there are more than 100 million working age Americans that do not currently have jobs.

In 2010, 2.6 million more Americans fell into poverty.  That was the largest increase since the U.S. government began keeping statistics on this back in 1959.

When Barack Obama first entered the White House there were only 32 million Americans on food stamps.  Now, that number is over 46.4 million.

At this point, 48 percent of all Americans are either considered to be "low income" or are living in poverty, while the poverty rate for children living in the United States is a whopping 22 percent

Real median household income (adjusted for inflation) since Barack Obama entered the White House has  declined by $4300.  Per year!

At this point, the U.S. national debt is rising by more than 2 million dollars every single minute. The U.S. national debt has risen by more than 5 trillion dollars since the day that Barack Obama first took office.  In a little more than 3 years Obama has added more to the national debt than the first 41 presidents combined!

If the federal government had used generally accepted accounting principles the real U.S. budget deficit (not total debt) in 2011 would have been $5,000,000,000,000!  (5 Trillion dollars) as opposed to the still-massive $1,000,000,000,000+ (1+ Trillion dollars) reported.

In January 2009, the month President Obama entered the Oval Office and shortly before he signed his stimulus spending bill, median household income was $54,983. By June 2012, it had tumbled to $50,964, adjusted for inflation. (See the chart.) That's $4,019 in lost real income, a little less than a month's income every year!

Unfair, you say, because Mr. Obama inherited a recession? Well, even if you start the analysis when the recession ended in June 2009, the numbers are dismal. Three years after the economy hit its trough, median household income is down $2,544, or nearly 5%.  In other words, the Obama "recovery" has been worse than the Bush recession.

So, if you just combine two of the above factors, the increase in gas prices and the decline in household income, you come up over $5000 in annual income short of where you were four years ago.  I didn't bother to figure out the total dollar costs of the rise in price of other staples such as food, utilities, and health care  (I was depressed enough already), but it's undeniable that we're hurtin', and the remedy offered by the Obama administration isn't working to cure the economy.

Doctors in the Middle Ages once believed that the application of leeches would cure the patient.  Didn't work for them then, won't work any better Obama now.


Something else for you to chew on:  The United State's standing in the World Economic Forum's competitiveness rankings.

In the 2008-2009 report the U.S. ranked #1 in global competitiveness.  The latest report, just released, shows that the U.S. has slipped, dropping from 5th to 7th, behind Switzerland, Singapore, Finland, Sweden, the Netherlands and Germany, followed by the UK (8th), Hong Kong (9th), and Japan (10th).
--WashingtonPost  and WeForum

When it comes to economic freedom, it's even worse.  In the latest report on world economic freedom, both the Cato Institute and the Heritage Foundation rank HONG KONG at #1.  Heritage has the U.S. ranked 10th, while Cato has us at 18th in the world.  A communist country has a freer economy than the U.S.! Following Hong Kong were Singapore, New Zealand and Switzerland. Oh, and where were we prior to the Obama Presidency?  #1.
--DailyCapitalist  PRNewswire

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