With the election season now in full swing, I will be posting some occasional political commentaries in addition to my Friday postings that typically focus on non-political topics such as the economy, the markets, etc. These election/political commentaries will usually be posted on Wednesdays (but not necessarily every Wednesday).
Many agree that this will be the most important presidential election in decades, certainly since the election of Ronald Reagan in 1980. Hopefully our analyses of the political landscape and the Electoral College battles will be helpful as the election approaches.
Most of you know by now that I am not a fan of President Obama, and I will continue to criticize him if I disagree with his policies. But when it comes to analyzing the state-by-state races, I will be honest with you, even if Obama is winning. As always, I appreciate your comments and suggestions.
Today, we kick-off my “Wednesday Specials” with an article from Investors.com (Investors Business Daily). The article speaks for itself.
“The Lowlights of Obamanomics
The Obama Record: May’s weak jobs report further confirms the president’s policies are failing to help the economy. This is, indeed, the worst recovery since the Depression.
Negative superlatives associated with this presidency keep piling up. The toll so far:
• The share of Americans who’ve been out of work a long time — now at 42% of the unemployed — is the highest since the Great Depression (source: Labor Department).
• The proportion of the civilian working-age population actually working, at 58%, is the smallest since the Carter era (Labor Department).
• Growth in nonfarm payroll jobs since the recovery began in June 2009 is the slowest of any comparable recovery since World War II (Hoover Institution).
• The rate of new business startups — the engine of job growth — has plunged to an all-time low of 7.87% of all businesses (Census Bureau).
• 3 in 10 young adults can’t find jobs and live with their parents, highest since the 1950s (Pew Research).
• 54% of bachelor’s degree-holders under the age of 25 are jobless or underemployed, the highest share in decades (Northeastern University).
• Black teen unemployment, now at 37%, is near Depression-era highs (Labor Department).
• Almost 1 in 6 Americans are now poor — the highest ratio in 30 years — and the total number of poor, at 49.1 million, is the largest on record (Census).
• The share of Hispanics in poverty has topped that of blacks for the first time, 28.2% to 25.4% (Census).
• The number of Americans on food stamps — 45 million recipients, or 1 in 7 residents — also is the highest on record (Congressional Budget Office).
• Total government dependency — defined as the share of Americans receiving one or more federal benefit payments — is now at 47%, highest ever (Hoover).
• The share of Americans paying no income tax, at 49.5%, is the highest ever (Heritage Foundation, IRS).
• The national homeownership rate, now at 65.4%, is the lowest in 15 years (Census).
• The 30-point gap between black and white Americans who own their own homes is the widest in two decades and one of the widest on record (Census).
• Federal spending, now at 23.4% of GDP, is the highest since WWII (CBO).
• Excluding defense and interest payments, spending is the highest in American history, at 17.6% of the economy (First Trust Economics).
• The federal debt, at 69% of GDP, is the highest since just after WWII (CBO).
[If you include total federal debt, not just debt held by the public, the number is 100% of GDP.]
• The U.S. budget deficit, now at 9.5% of the economy, is the highest since WWII (CBO).
• U.S. Treasury debt has been downgraded for the first time in history, meaning the U.S. government no longer ranks among risk-free borrowers (S&P).
This is what Obamanomics has wrought. Fiscal promiscuity. Trickle-up poverty. Shared misery.”
To be fair, the bad news above is not entirely Obama’s fault. Most of these trends were developing before Obama took office. What is true is that he has made them all worse.