A four year recovery?
Throughout this election cycle, the Republican Party has continuously claimed, that the Obama administration has not brought about a significant enough of a recovery to our economy, during his first term in office. While there is no question that we all would like to see our economy in better shape than it currently is, we must put into perspective, the situation that this administration has inherited, before we can reasonably judge, where our economy should be at the present time.
Certainly we have all heard the short story; that former President Bush left us with the expense of two of the longest wars in history and a crumbling US economy. But what is rarely ever mentioned, is the fact that the full extent of our economic problems was not known, outside of a few experts in the field, until after President Obama won the general election.
Between the general election, and President Obama’s inauguration, the top economists in the White House, announced how dyer the situation truly was; they predicted that if strong and effective measures were not taken as soon as possible, our nation would be facing a depression comparable to the Great depression of 1929.
Without access to this information during his election campaign, it should be understandable, that the then candidate Obama, promised economic and employment figures, better than that, which could have been achieved, given the true state of the situation.
Seriously! … A four year recovery, given what we were facing during the initial crash, is completely unrealistic! Assuming the predictions of those top White House economists we’re even close to being true, then all we have to do is compare the current numbers, with those of the Great Depression, to truly understand, just how effective the Obama administration has been, at getting this economic disaster under control.
During the crash of 1929, the stock market lost 40% of it’s value in the first three months, and the following depression lead to an unemployment rate, in excess of 25 percent. The entire decade of the 1930’s was an economic disaster. The unemployment levels never fully recovered, until the hardware demands of World War II, created a doubling of US industrial output. It also took an entire 25 years before the stock market would fully recover to a pre 1929 level.
Now I ask you to compare those figures from the Great Depression, to what we have experienced over the past four years: From the time that President Obama won the general election, until his inauguration, unemployment rates rose from 6.8% to over 7.8% . One year later it had risen to a peek of 10.0%, and over the following three years, it lowered to the current level of 7.8%; the same as when he took office. These are the seasonally adjusted numbers, used in most reports. The non-adjusted numbers, ( 6.5%, 8.5%, 10.6% and 7.6% respectively) show an even more exaggerated spike, and a return to a pre-inauguration level. Records from the Dow Jones Industrial Average show a similar history, with levels above 13,000 points near the end of 2008, then falling below 7000 points in 2009, and a return to over 13,000 points in the past few months.
Given the economic prediction that was made just before President Obama took office, and the history stated in this article, I fully believe that President Obama successfully reversed and averted, the continuation of an economic disaster, which otherwise would have been far worse than what we have just experienced over the past 4 years.
(Matthew Perlman 11/01/2012)