Here are the top 10 economic indicators that Obama doesn‚??t want you to pay attention to:
1. Unemployment rate
Despite his promise that the nearly $1 trillion 2009 economic stimulus would get America working again, the unemployment rate has been above 8 percent for 43 straight months. The current 8.1 percent jobless rate woefully understates the reality of problem. When taking into account people working part-time who want a full-time job and those who have given up looking for work, the rate is over 15 percent. Add in recent college graduates working at McDonald‚??s at the rate tops 18 percent.
2. Job creation
At the Democratic convention, Obama was quick to praise himself for having presided over the creation of 4.5 million jobs ‚??over the last three and a half years.‚?Ě The only problem is that he doesn‚??t include the jobs lost in the recession earlier in his term. A true reading of job creation under Obama shows a net gain of only several hundred thousand and he has the worst record on growing employment of any president since World War II.
3. Economic growth
Remember the ‚??recovery summer‚?Ě that Joe Biden promised in 2010? Or how Obama‚??s stimulus package was going to get the economy moving with all those ‚??shovel-ready‚?Ě jobs? The latest GDP report showed anemic 1.7 percent growth in the second quarter as any short-term benefit from Obama‚??s fiscal shot-in-the-arm has faded and now the nation is facing the possibility of a double-dip recession.
4. Food stamps
The one area of growth that Obama has presided over is the explosive increase in food stamp participation. When he took office in January 2009, fewer than 31 million Americans received food stamps. After an aggressive effort by the Obama administration to expand the program, now one-out-of-seven Americans, over 46 million, are receiving federal food assistance, an increase of 44 percent during his administration.
5. Household income
Considering that consumer spending constitutes the bulk of the nation‚??s gross domestic product, the loss in household income bodes ill for future economic growth. In addition to being squeezed by higher prices, families have seen their average income drop from $54,916 to $50,969 during Obama‚??s presidency. Add in the housing crisis which damaged the net worth of many families, and there is little hope for a consumer-driven recovery.
6. Gas prices
In 2009, when Barack Obama was inaugurated president, the price of gasoline was $1.81 per gallon. Since then it has more than doubled, nearing $4 per gallon, and that was before the recent Middle East turmoil threatened to drive prices up. While such events are beyond the control of any president, Obama‚??s reluctance to fully develop domestic oil resources and the delay of the Keystone pipeline contribute to the supply-and-demand problem.
7. Work-force participation
The August unemployment report contained a somber statistic: some 581,000 Americans have dropped out of the work-force and stopped looking for a job. The same report showed only 91,000 jobs were created in the month. With the number of Americans in the workforce‚??either having a job or looking for one‚??falling to 63.5 percent, the lowest in over 30 years, that kind of job creation doesn‚??t come close to keep up with the nation‚??s population growth.
8. Manufacturing jobs
At the Democratic convention in Charlotte, Obama made the ridiculous pledge that he would create one million manufacturing jobs in a second term and double the nation‚??s exports. Of course, he didn‚??t say how he was going to do that or, if it was so easy, why he didn‚??t create some in his first term. On the contrary, the September jobs report from the Labor Department showed the nation losing 15,000 manufacturing jobs last month, continuing a streak of monthly losses.
Don‚??t look now, but inflation is gearing up to come roaring back. The consumer price index rose 0.6 percent in August and with severe drought in many parts of the United States, food prices are likely to take a price hike. And with the Federal Reserve starting to pump many billions of dollars into the money supply through its QE3 plan, the value of the dollar will surely erode.
One area of growth during the Obama Era is in the number of Americans who have fallen into poverty. Since Obama took office, the number of people officially living in poverty‚??defined as an annual income of $23,021 for a family of four‚??topped 15 percent and increased from 39.8 million to 46.6 million. Those numbers will likely grow in a second term since his policies are more aimed at giving handouts than creating a positive climate for job creation.