Wednesday, December 21, 2011

This Economy Stinks! Do I Smell Depression?

If you have a job and are making the money you need to make to keep your head above water and save some for the future, you are very blessed and are surely in the minority. The Obama administration and the enabling news media are jerking our chains with reports of an improving economy. In my opinion, we did not stave off a depression with the federal government's efforts to spark an economic recovery, we insured that we would most likely slide from a recession into the gaping mouth of another depression.

This is a case of history repeating itself. Economies naturally go through strong and weak cycles about every 50 years or so. The stock market crash of 1929 need not have turned into a depression. Like we did in recent years with the banking crisis, a progressive republican administration (Hoover) tried to boost the economy by throwing tax money at the obvious problems. His natural failure to make a dent in the economic slowdown resulted in the election of an even more progressive Democratic administration. Roosevelt's answer, as it is with all liberals and progressives, was to throw even more tax dollars at what they thought was the problem. The result was 9 more years of a depression. Europe and the rest of the world had come out of their economic woes much earlier than the U.S. did. It took WWII to put the American people to work.

Some might say that that was a form of government spending. True, but it was deficit spending that destroyed the economies of Japan, Germany, and Italy. Only the very,very, wise prepare way in advance for war, and because of this they would rarely be in a situation where they needed to wage war. But as to our economic recovery, our mainland was literally untouched by the ravages of war. When the war ended, the United Sates was in the position to supply the world with what it needed, and when our soldiers and sailors returned, there was lots of work in producing materials and fuel for reconstructing the world. What wealth there was left from the rest of the world flowed to us.

By the way, this is not a call for us to start a war to get us back on a healthy economic setting. The Free Market is the natural equalizer. If you understand that economies will naturally ebb and wain and that, as the tides of the oceans do, economies will right themselves if allowed to do so, you understand that a steadying hand is never necessary. It happens every time. Government efforts to manipulate economies fail every time. Socialism and communism DO NOT WORK!
The answer to our current economic woes is to get Obama and as many liberal and progressive Democrats of Congress out of office and replaced by Conservatives as soon as possible.

Again, the administration and the liberal media want us to believe that the economy is slowly getting better and that Obama's actions saved us from a depression. I resist that assessment strongly. We have to stop spending money as if all we have to do is print more, and we have to dramatically cut government spending and taxes. Lower taxes will boost production, which will in turn, create job growth and actually increase revenue--it happens every time it's tried. Eventually, with spending cuts and more revenue, our deficit will go away, but because of the overspending we have subjected ourselves to during the last few years, it may take a long time, but not as long as it would take if we stay on the same path for 5 more years.

Regulations are killing us, just as they did in the 30s. Government should never pick winners and losers. The Free Market does that for us, and much better, with out the stench of government corruption. If the businesses of America have their hands free to work and the free market is left alone, allowing some businesses to fail but for others to evolve and strive, we will recover faster and reach a higher economic plateau than before. Of course there will necessarily be short lived recessions in the future, but allowed to right itself by competition of the free market and without government intervention growth will return much faster.

To support my argument that we are being sold a bill of goods by the Obama administration and hamstrung by a complicit news media, I offer the following: An article from The Blaze Internet news service. This what you likely don not know about the actual economy and why what you are hearing from other sources seems to be not what you and your friends are experiencing.

50 Things You Probably Don't Know...
1. A staggering 48 percent of all Americans are either considered to be “low income” or are living in poverty.
2. Approximately 57 percent of all children in the United States are living in homes that are either considered to be “low income” or impoverished.
3. If the number of Americans that “wanted jobs” was the same today as it was back in 2007, the “official” unemployment rate put out by the U.S. government would be up to 11 percent.
4. The average amount of time that a worker stays unemployed in the United States is now over 40 weeks.
5. One recent survey found that 77 percent of all U.S. small businesses do not plan to hire any more workers.
6. There are fewer payroll jobs in the United States today than there were back in 2000 even though we have added 30 million extra people to the population since then.
7. Since December 2007, median household income in the United States has declined by a total of 6.8 percent once you account for inflation.
8. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 16.6 million Americans were self-employed back in December 2006. Today, that number has shrunk to 14.5 million.
9. A Gallup poll from earlier this year found that approximately one out of every five Americans that do have a job consider themselves to be underemployed.
10. According to author Paul Osterman, about 20 percent of all U.S. adults are currently working jobs that pay poverty-level wages.
11. Back in 1980, less than 30 percent of all jobs in the United States were low income jobs. Today, more than 40 percent of all jobs in the United States are low income jobs.
12. Back in 1969, 95 percent of all men between the ages of 25 and 54 had a job. In July, only 81.2 percent of men in that age group had a job.
13. One recent survey found that one out of every three Americans would not be able to make a mortgage or rent payment next month if they suddenly lost their current job.
14. The Federal Reserve recently announced that the total net worth of U.S. households declined by 4.1 percent in the 3rd quarter of 2011 alone.
15. According to a recent study conducted by the BlackRock Investment Institute, the ratio of household debt to personal income in the United States is now 154 percent.
16. As the economy has slowed down, so has the number of marriages. According to a Pew Research Center analysis, only 51 percent of all Americans that are at least 18 years old are currently married. Back in 1960, 72 percent of all U.S. adults were married.
17. The U.S. Postal Service has lost more than 5 billion dollars over the past year.
18. In Stockton, California home prices have declined 64 percent from where they were at when the housing market peaked.
19. Nevada has had the highest foreclosure rate in the nation for 59 months in a row.
20. If you can believe it, the median price of a home in Detroit is now just $6000.
21. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 18 percent of all homes in the state of Florida are sitting vacant. That figure is 63 percent larger than it was just ten years ago.
22. New home construction in the United States is on pace to set a brand new all-time record low in 2011.
23. 19 percent of all American men between the ages of 25 and 34 are now living with their parents.
24. Electricity bills in the United States have risen faster than the overall rate of inflation for five years in a row.
25. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, health care costs accounted for just 9.5 percent of all personal consumption back in 1980. Today they account for approximately 16.3 percent.
26. One study found that approximately 41 percent of all working age Americans either have medical bill problems or are currently paying off medical debt.
27. If you can believe it, one out of every seven Americans has at least 10 credit cards.
28. The United States spends about 4 dollars on goods and services from China for every one dollar that China spends on goods and services from the United States.
29. It is being projected that the U.S. trade deficit for 2011 will be 558.2 billion dollars.
30. The retirement crisis in the United States just continues to get worse. According to the Employee Benefit Research Institute, 46 percent of all American workers have less than $10,000 saved for retirement, and 29 percent of all American workers have less than $1,000 saved for retirement.
31. Today, one out of every six elderly Americans lives below the federal poverty line.
32. According to a study that was just released, CEO pay at America’s biggest companies rose by 36.5 percent in just one recent 12 month period.
33. Today, the “too big to fail” banks are larger than ever. The total assets of the six largest U.S. banks increased by 39 percent between September 30, 2006 and September 30, 2011.
34. The six heirs of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton have a net worth that is roughly equal to the bottom 30 percent of all Americans combined.
35. According to an analysis of Census Bureau data done by the Pew Research Center, the median net worth for households led by someone 65 years of age or older is 47 times greater than the median net worth for households led by someone under the age of 35.
36. If you can believe it, 37 percent of all U.S. households that are led by someone under the age of 35 have a net worth of zero or less than zero.
37. A higher percentage of Americans is living in extreme poverty (6.7 percent) than has ever been measured before.
38. Child homelessness in the United States is now 33 percent higher than it was back in 2007.
39. Since 2007, the number of children living in poverty in the state of California has increased by 30 percent.
40. Sadly, child poverty is absolutely exploding all over America. According to the National Center for Children in Poverty, 36.4 percent of all children that live in Philadelphia are living in poverty, 40.1 percent of all children that live in Atlanta are living in poverty, 52.6 percent of all children that live in Cleveland are living in poverty and 53.6 percent of all children that live in Detroit are living in poverty.
41. Today, one out of every seven Americans is on food stamps and one out of every four American children is on food stamps.
42. In 1980, government transfer payments accounted for just 11.7 percent of all income. Today, government transfer payments account for more than 18 percent of all income.
43. A staggering 48.5 percent of all Americans live in a household that receives some form of government benefits. Back in 1983, that number was below 30 percent.
44. Right now, spending by the federal government accounts for about 24 percent of GDP. Back in 2001, it accounted for just 18 percent.
45. For fiscal year 2011, the U.S. federal government had a budget deficit of nearly 1.3 trillion dollars. That was the third year in a row that our budget deficit has topped one trillion dollars.
46. If Bill Gates gave every single penny of his fortune to the U.S. government, it would only cover the U.S. budget deficit for about 15 days.
47. Amazingly, the U.S. government has now accumulated a total debt of 15 trillion dollars. When Barack Obama first took office the national debt was just 10.6 trillion dollars.
48. If the federal government began right at this moment to repay the U.S. national debt at a rate of one dollar per second, it would take over 440,000 years to pay off the national debt.
49. The U.S. national debt has been increasing by an average of more than 4 billion dollars per day since the beginning of the Obama administration.
50. During the Obama administration, the U.S. government has accumulated more debt than it did from the time that George Washington took office to the time that Bill Clinton took office.

Clearly, we are in big trouble. Obama has we should not go back to the failed policies of the past. I agree. Socialism has been tried all over the world and failed miserably. It is failing here again. If we could have reversed course after FDR's first term, as we should do now, history would likely have been kinder to us as a nation. The future will be kinder to us now, if we can be disciplined enough to right our course and move RIGHT.