Monday, November 19, 2007

It's a bad time to be a Republican

Democrat candidates across the country have a smorgasbord of issues to pick from on the campaign trail. Iraq and health care are two of the biggest, but "it's the economy stupid" is quickly closing the gap. Here's the bad economic news for Republicans:
The Rasmussen Consumer Index measures the nation’s economic confidence on a daily basis and has now been below the 100.0 baseline level for two full weeks. That baseline was established in October 2001 meaning that economic confidence today is lower than it was in the aftermath of the 9-11 terrorist attacks. [emphasis mine]

Just 13% of Americans now say the economy is getting better while 68% say it is getting worse. Forty-two percent (42%) say the country is in a recession already and another 13% say a recession is coming within six months.
The Gallop Organization got a similar sentiment:
Just 13% of Americans say economic conditions are positive, lowest reading since the Gallup Organization started polling on the question in 1991 — a time when overall consumer confidence was at one of its lowest points in the past 40 years. [emphasis mine]
Even the Republicans' base is feeling the pain according to Bloomberg:
Affluent consumers, pinched by shrinking stock portfolios, falling property values and smaller bonuses, are behaving like their less-well-off peers: They're reining in spending.

That portends a steeper slowdown than originally forecast for the U.S. economy, or even a recession, because the richest fifth of American households accounts for almost 40 percent of consumer spending, the main engine of economic growth.
Yep, it's definitely a bad time to be a Republican. This is the state of our economy today as described by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:
But there should be no misunderstanding, whatever the vagaries of presidential politics, that the economy has taken a hammering during Mr. Bush's seven years in power. On the plus side, to the degree that the unemployment rate is a valid measure, it stands at a not-bad 4.6 percent. On the other hand, job creation, although it has had a few good months, has in general been abysmal, not even meeting the 150,000-per-month minimum needed to absorb new entries into the job market.

Mr. Bush's two major tax cuts benefited his base, the rich. The national debt has soared on his watch, resulting in the United States having to spend $200 billion a year on debt service. China holds $1 trillion in U.S. public and private debt, another uncomfortable thought. Mortgage foreclosures are expected to reach 2 million, cutting into both Americans' sense of well-being and their willingness to spend money as consumers -- a development that could be catastrophic for retailers.

Gasoline at more than $3 a gallon, while oil company profits soar, is simply enraging, and no American can be unaware that both Mr. Bush and his vice president, Dick Cheney, came to government from the oil industry. The price didn't go from $20 a barrel in 2002 to nearly $100 today simply because of growing Chinese and Indian demand. The riling of the Middle East that Mr. Bush's Iraq war created has played an important role in that phenomenon.

On a more basic level, the United States -- in no small part because of spending its money on wars and profits to oil companies and defense contractors -- continues to neglect its human and physical infrastructure. America is not educating nearly enough scientists and engineers. Its bridges, roads and technology development continue to get short shrift.
And don't forget about our devalued dollar. OPEC is threatening to dump the dollar and rapsters are rapping about the Euro being the newest "bling".

There's no doubt the president is responsible for the state of our economy, but that doesn't absolve the Republicans who went along with him each step of the way. They are equally responsible. They need to be held accountable too. The voting booth is the perfect place to accomplish that.


I.M. Small said...


Con-men fall prey to other conners
Then wind up taking stupid honors
Bestowed by other boneheads, see,
And this is called civility.

It is the way of CEOs:
The scalawag in charge but knows
Running the firm into the ground
Will "severance package" yet be found--

Millions and millions, to presume
His some especial talent, plume
Billows in his wake, however,
Collapse, disaster guided clever.

The army both and Washington
By CEOs are likewise run,
With no attachment to success
Beyond the short-term--can you guess
They all have holdings overseas,
But you and I, we don´t have these.

Praguetwin said...

Nice poem, small.

Jay-Z flashing Euros! Nice one!

Remember when we were talking about Yen weakness?

Turns out that wasn't really the issue, or at least the main one.

Kathy said...

IMS, thanks for the poem. I enjoyed it.

PT, I do remember us having that conversation. Things sure did get worse quickly since then, didn't they?

Midwestern Progressive said...

If this story is true, it is a bad time to be even a moderate Republican. Moderates are being driven out of the GOP.

At the end of the day, based on what the GOP stands for these days, I'm just glad I'm not in their camp.

Kathy said...

Midwestern, you're glad you're not in their camp? If the GOP is now losing moderates, its probably because they feel the same way. No one likes the extremists on either side of the aisle.