The Obama years could mean a “lost decade” for the United States

E. Thomas McClanahan writes in the Kansas City Star how the Obama years may be looked at as America’s “lost decade” years from now:

After five years of lousy economic performance, you would think people would be sick of it by now. Guess not. How else to explain why we’re having a big fight over inequality instead of arguing over how to jump-start growth?

There’s no denying inequality has increased. Median wages haven’t kept up while families in the upper tax brackets have prospered. But even so, getting the economy back on its typical growth path of 3.4 percent a year should be the overriding imperative.

That would do wonders for the immediate problem of too few jobs and too many jobless — not to mention the problem of lagging incomes and insufficient federal revenue.


New-Home Sales Drop 0.3%, Cast Shadow on Recovery: CNBC

New-Home Sales Drop 0.3%, Cast Shadow on Recovery – US Business News – CNBC.

Washington Post: how do we solve our mortgage crisis?

Over the Thanksgiving holiday, the Washington Post published a story discussing how Obama is planning on dealing with the ongoing mortgage dilemma.  Of course, the first suggestion to Obama from is cadre of advisors was to (wait for it…wait for it…) forgive the debt:

Nearly all said Obama should introduce a much bigger plan to forgive part of the mortgage debt owed by millions of homeowners who are underwater on their properties.

The ongoing mortgage crisis is nothing new. This has been a perpetual drag on economy since the first day that President Obama took office. It is interesting to note that contained within the story is the acknowledgment that the “recovery” that we have been experiencing has sputtered.

The meeting highlighted what today is the biggest disagreement between some of the world’s top economists and the Obama administration. The economists say the president could have significantly accelerated the slow economic recovery if he had better addressed the overhang of mortgage debt left when housing prices collapsed. Obama’s advisers say that they did all they could on the housing front and that other factors better explain why the recovery has been sluggish.

The question is relevant because although Obama won reelection this month, the vast majority of voters still say the economy is weak and not getting better. Policymakers in Washington are now focused on another type of debt — the public debt all taxpayers owe — but the slow economic recovery, which depresses tax revenue, makes that problem harder to solve.

The odds that President Obama successfully gets a bill through the house waving hundreds of millions of mortgage debt is slim to none. Right now, Congress and the White House are focusing squarely on the fiscal cliff. This is especially true as  Speaker of the House John Boehner is focusing almost exclusively on navigating the tax rate issues.

(November 15, 2012 – Source: Roger Wollenberg/Getty Images North America)

Washington Times: Stop believing in Obama

A recent story in the Washington Times dissects the Obama experience over the last four years. In particular, the writers focus on the catastrophic leadership, or lack there of, that Pres. Obama has displayed while in office. Rather than reach across the aisle, and find practical compromise with his opponents on the hill, he battled them. As a result of his leadership vacuum, the economy is limping along, at antianemic pace. We are suffering from the worst “recovery” on record, and there is no indication that things will get better in the next four years.

Mr. Obama’s economic record has been about as bad as it could possibly be. In his first budget proposal, he promised the economy would be growing at a brisk 6.3 percent by 2012. Instead, it’s limping along at just over 1 percent. He promised that the federal deficit would be carved down to $581 billion. Instead, it has ballooned beyond $1 trillion. In 2009, he promised that if his budget-busting stimulus plan were passed, unemployment would be around 5.5 percent by now. Instead, the official rate is nearly 8 percent. Poverty has increased; the number of long-term unemployed has increased; there are millions more discouraged workers; food stamp use has surged; gas prices are up and family incomes are down. A second term would be no different.

Forbes: US Ranked last in top-10 countries for business…great, just great

In Top Ten Countries For Business, U.S. Ranks Last – Forbes.

Just when you thought our economic recover couldn’t look more feeble, Forbes reports that Grant Thornton ranks America dead last in the list of top 10 countries to do business.