WASHINGTON, September 18, 2013 — The United States Census Bureau (USCB) released its latest report Tuesday on income, poverty and health insurance coverage in this country through 2012. As President Obama said Monday, “…on this five-year anniversary [of the Lehman Bros. collapse] we should take note of how far we’ve come from where we were five years ago.” So, where does the Obama economy stand today compared to late 2008?
According to the USCB report, “income over the past five years shows an 8.3 percent decline since 2007.” This is where Obama’s policies are hitting Americans in the pocket book. It is difficult for companies to increase wages when there are so many unknowns in operating their businesses, from ObamaCare costs to tax rates. Often, the president mentions that the richest among us have seen their incomes rise.
However, we should consider the source of the income of the wealthiest Americans: the markets.
The treasury has flooded those markets with cash through quantitative easing, providing more money to be exchanged among the wealthy through these transactions. The Dow Jones Industrial Average had more than doubled by the end of 2011 compared with its recent low in the spring of 2009. When the president comments on the gap having grown between the wealthy and the poor, consider that it is his own policies that have caused this.
Contrary to the success of the very wealthy, 31.6 percent of the population was in poverty for at least two months during the three year period of 2009 to 2011. This means that nearly one-third of Americans have experienced poverty in this time period. The president who claims to be working for the poorest and most needy among us has certainly failed these citizens. The government handouts and programs praised, supported and encouraged by a top-down federal government are not trickling down to the least fortunate among us.
Keynesian economics, when applied by the government, is “trickle down economics” — but, from the government. President Obama is proving that this philosophy doesn’t work.
For all of Obama’s emphasis on women in the 2012 elections and his signing the Lilly Ledbetter Act in January 2009, women still only made 77 percent of what men earned in 2012, according to the USCB. One can argue the foundation of how those numbers are calculated given the additional health expense of a woman in her childbearing years, and other related expenses. However, the fact still remains that the numbers as calculated have not improved since the president signed the LLA or fought, and supposedly won, the “war on women” in 2012.
As the first African American president, many in the black community assumed that President Obama would be a champion for minorities. However, in reviewing the graph of real median household income in the report, we learn that Asians are the only minority group with any noticeable increase in income in 2011, and that blacks have a median household income that is less than half that of Asian families.
In a recent poll, 41% said that the economy is the most important issue, followed by healthcare at 16% and Syria at 15%. Despite the lack of positive economic news, the New York Times titled their story on the USCB’s report, “Household Incomes Remain Flat Despite Improving Economy,” citing an increase of two million jobs. According toPew Research, the black unemployment rate is twice that of white people. This is after President Obama has been in office nearly five years, with plenty of time to attempt to change this trend. The overall unemployment rate is 7.3 percent, far above the 5 percent rate Obama promised during his 2008 campaign, and when factoring in those who have given up looking for work the rate nearly doubles.
To put this in perspective, the unemployment rate in October 2008 — the month after Lehman Bros. collapsed — was 6.5 percent. Long gone are the days of the George W. Bush administration when the unemployment rate began with a four or a five. In fact, Obama has even overseen a 10 percent unemployment rate in October 2009. The unemployment rate is declining, ever so slowly, but there are fewer jobs available in total, there are more people who have given up, and employers are setting hours at 29 per week to escape the stranglehold of ObamaCare provisions.
The Obama economy has become everything candidate Barack Obama said he wanted to reverse: a widening gap between the rich and poor; higher poverty rates; declining household incomes; women not earning as much as men; fewer jobs available in total; jobs that are not full time; and, most minority groups receiving the brunt of the flailing economy. That is what the numbers really show about the Obama economy.
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