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  1. #1 Better Off? Let's Count the Ways We're Not 
    Senior Member Gina's Avatar
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    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.

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    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.

    Given this record, we can only hope Obama doesn't have the chance to get a "complete" on his plans.
    Amen to that.
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  2. #2  
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    I've been able to answer the "are you better off than four years ago" question in the affirmative ever since Reagan started asking it. It doesn't have much at all to do with who ends up being president.
    "Today, [the American voter] chooses his rulers as he buys bootleg whiskey, never knowing precisely what he is getting, only certain that it is not what it pretends to be." - H.L. Mencken
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  3. #3  
    Senior Member wasp69's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by linda22003 View Post
    I've been able to answer the "are you better off than four years ago" question in the affirmative ever since Reagan started asking it. It doesn't have much at all to do with who ends up being president.
    Really? What, exactly, is it that you do to make money?
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  4. #4  
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    Quote Originally Posted by wasp69 View Post
    Really? What, exactly, is it that you do to make money?
    I don't know, but she'd better share.
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  5. #5  
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    It helps that my husband and I haven't had any job losses during the last few years; when we have lost jobs, unemployment hasn't lasted long and has always (knock on wood!) resulted in an improvement. Our investments have also grown greatly over the years - we buy and hold. :)
    "Today, [the American voter] chooses his rulers as he buys bootleg whiskey, never knowing precisely what he is getting, only certain that it is not what it pretends to be." - H.L. Mencken
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  6. #6  
    Senior Member wasp69's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by linda22003 View Post
    It helps that my husband and I haven't had any job losses during the last few years; when we have lost jobs, unemployment hasn't lasted long and has always (knock on wood!) resulted in an improvement. Our investments have also grown greatly over the years - we buy and hold. :)
    Lucky you. Many in our country have not been so fortunate and, during this particular presidential cycle, they have not been helped by an admin that has been so openly hostile to business and so callously indifferent to anyone that did not have the $ to help him get elected/reelected.

    Being a marxist in charge of a free market economy will do some pretty nasty things to the confidence factor of the various markets.

    But, we're all happy you're doing well.
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  7. #7  
    Senior Member Molon Labe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by linda22003 View Post
    I've been able to answer the "are you better off than four years ago" question in the affirmative ever since Reagan started asking it. It doesn't have much at all to do with who ends up being president.
    This^
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  8. #8  
    Power CUer noonwitch's Avatar
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    I'm not worse off than I was 4 years ago.
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  9. #9  
    CU Royalty JB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonwitch View Post
    I'm not worse off than I was 4 years ago.
    You need to pay more in taxes then.
    Be Not Afraid.
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  10. #10  
    LTC Member Odysseus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonwitch View Post
    I'm not worse off than I was 4 years ago.
    You're a government employee. So am I. We're not hurting, but the people who pay our salaries are.
    --Odysseus
    Sic Hacer Pace, Para Bellum.

    Before you can do things for people, you must be the kind of man who can get things done. But to get things done, you must love the doing, not the people!
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