Letter - This economic recovery isn’t real


Here’s a summary of the Federal Reserve’s and Obama’s new economy without the media hype.

First, health care. Health care costs are 17 percent of GDP, the highest in the world, anything but affordable.

Second, education. Globally, the U.S. ranks 20th or less depending on the subject.

What’s the government’s solution? Throw $1 trillion via student loans into the coffers of higher education. Result, no improvement in global standings, but college costs up three times the rate of inflation, graduates burdened with debt, and a lot of college graduates who have degrees, but can’t find a decent paying job.

Third, the job market. A reduction in the unemployment rate because of an onslaught of part-time jobs and because the participation rate is at a 35-year low (ages 20-24, it’s at a 42-year low). The average hourly workweek is 34 hours compared to 39 hours in the 1970s. There are 138 million workers (nonfarm payroll), some only part-time, supporting 66 million on Social Security and Supplemental Security Income programs (the 66 million doesn’t include those on welfare programs).

Bottom line, the work force is shrinking at the same time those on government assistance programs is rising. Eventually, something has to give.

Forth, the housing market. Thirty percent of home purchases are cash because investors are heavily involved in the residential housing market due to easy Fed money. The homeownership rate is at an 18-year low (65 percent) even with ultra low interest rates.

Fifth, the stock market hitting new highs when over 50 percent of Americans feel we’re still in recession. With low interest rates manufactured by the Federal Reserve, large corporations are able to borrow and buy back stock increasing earnings per share ($1.7 trillion of buybacks in the past five years).

Sixth, the bond market. The Federal Reserve buys half of all newly issued long-term U.S. government debt.

Meaning, very few investors want to own long-term government debt. The national debt has literally doubled in just the last seven years ($8.7 trillion to $17.5 trillion).

Lastly, in 2010 (latest data) the top 1 percent got 93 percent of the income growth. Or to put it another way, the bottom 99 percent shared only 7 percent of the income growth (Obama, like the Pied Piper, is a master at bamboozling the public.).

Spin this letter left or right, but the inference will be the same: This so-called recovery stinks.

Richard Strozinsky

Walla Walla


Bigdog 1 year, 7 months ago

Thank you for taking the time to categorically spell out the truth - I am glad to see someone besides me can see without clouded vision. It is too bad that more don't realize the real facts before it is too late. These facts speak for themselves, yet the liberals continue to live an existence of denial.


downhillracer 1 year, 7 months ago

Sources, please. Perhaps without the ideological hyperbole this time.


NewInWW 1 year, 7 months ago

It's odd to end a letter bashing Obama with "Spin this letter left or right, but the inference will be the same: This so-called recovery stinks."

The recovery does stink, and there is a lot of blame to lay at the feet of both parties. However only one of the two parties had, as its stated objective in 2008, to make sure that Obama's was a failed presidency. When only one of the two parties in Washington is interested in ruling for the betterment of the country, it's hard to get much done.


Iopine 1 year, 7 months ago

That's what the letter stated. Spin it the way you like.


Iopine 1 year, 7 months ago

Sorry I didn't mean to leave the comment at that. If you recall from 2007-2009 the majority of the House and Senate was held by a single party. At that time then Senator Obama voted yah or present on all legislation that was passed. From 2009-2011 all three - House, Senate & Presidency) was held by a single party. Since that time the Senate & the Presidency has been held by a single party. Not understanding how that one party can upset the whole applecart with the Senate Majority leader stifling all legislation that tries to go forward?


NewInWW 1 year, 7 months ago

During the period that the Democrats held the House, Senate and presidency, Obama - perhaps naively not taking the Republicans at their word - tried very hard to engage Congressional Republicans on a series of measures, including health care and financial reform. He was essentially stonewalled until the end of that period, when Congressional Democrats said the heck with it and passed a tsunami of legislation with virtually no Republican votes.

The Republicans since that time, as you well know, have refused to engage in meaningful discussions and have shut the government down once and, through their idiocy and brinksmanship on the debt ceiling, managed to reduce the US government debt rating.

There's a lot of blame to go around, but until we get a meaningful handle on the lawful bribery of elected officials through "campaign donations" (aided and abetted by the Conservatives on the SCOTUS), it's unlikely to get any better.


Iopine 1 year, 7 months ago

Your first 2 paragraphs are purely myth. A prime example would be when the Democrats pushed through the Presidents signature legislation with the House Majority Speakers quote "We have to pass the bill so we can find out whats in it". Kinda like "sign a blank check and trust me"? Well we have been finding out for the last 4 years the downfalls of this legislation and it is not over yet.

In regards to your last paragraph the statement is rather mind-boggling (especially your reference to conservatives) due to the fact that it has been proven that Democrats outspend Republicans by a margin of 3 to 2 and most of the time 2 to 1. How about the campaigning President in Hollywood and taking in millions in one dinner at $32,000/a plate? I would prefer that politicians be limited to minimal amounts of money to travel in there district and not except outside money which often happens in these larger districts. If there is so much money to be donated put it to something useful such as upgrades to a High School?


PearlY 1 year, 7 months ago

As long as "other people's money" keeps flowing, we can count on at least a feeble economic recovery.

Take a look at the 29 jobs listings here on the U-B, for jobs within 10 miles of our zip code.

Eleven are for government agencies or entities that derive most or all of their money from direct government subsidies. Eleven more are for entities that depend heavily on indirect government subsidies like Medicaid, Medicare and aid to higher education. Only seven are from purely private employers.

How sustainable is an economy that requires government to subsidize more than 75% of the jobs out there?


NewInWW 1 year, 7 months ago

If you actually want to discuss this, it might be useful to have some facts.

According to the BLS as of today, "Employment in government was unchanged in March. A decline of 9,000 jobs in federal government was mostly offset by an increase of 8,000 jobs in local government, excluding education. Over the past year, employment in federal government has fallen by 85,000."

Your "analysis" of the national employment market is a bit like declaring that the unemployment rate is at 100% based on the loss of a job by single wage earner whose unemployment rate is, indeed, 100%. That's why small samples often, as you very well know, lead to inaccurate conclusions.


chicoli 1 year, 7 months ago

Richard, what's the solution? Put the Republicans in charge? OK, tell me about your ideas, but please be nice to our poor, disenfranchised, hungry, unhealthy and uneducated fellow Americans. Please do it without insulting them, after all you're supposed to be a compassionate conservative son of a gun! Are you from the Burg town? There you go, you're one of a kind, my friend!


dogman12 1 year, 7 months ago

One way to make personal decisions that might help the local community keep more of its wealth and health is to minimize your spending at global corporate outlets, and maximize your spending at locally owned businesses. It has been demonstrated that the multipliers in the local economy are much greater when you do that. Every global corporate outlet is like a big vacuum, sucking our money from local circulation. We are coming to a "market correction" in standard of living, made inevitable by the globalization of economies foisted upon us by the criminal elite. As that unfolds, local food, energy, and water will become precious, and the illusion that wealth consists of clouds of electrons in some distant corporate computer will melt away. Stay healthy, develop your skills and social connections, invest in durable tools.


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