As Pete pointed out, a large majority of Americans think the economy is getting worse. They aren’t simply being intransigent in refusing to buy the administration’s assurances that the recovery is in full swing. It turns out they have a pretty good sense of where the economy is headed. This report explains:
The number of U.S. workers filing new claims for jobless benefits unexpectedly rose last week to the highest level in close to six months, the latest evidence the economy’s recovery is faltering. Thursday’s data came two days after the Federal Reserve spooked investors by downgrading its assessment of the economy. The increase in jobless claims added to worries in the stock market, which has failed to make any gains this year.
The number of new claims for state unemployment insurance rose by 2,000 to 484,000 in the week ended August 7, the second straight increase, the Labor Department said. Economists had expected claims to edge down to 469,000.
“This is not a good number,” said John Brady, an analyst at MF Global in Chicago. “Claims are going the wrong way. That has the market concerned.”
U.S. stocks closed down for a third straight day, pressured by the data and a disappointing revenue forecast from tech bellwether Cisco Systems Inc.
Obama’s happy talk about the recovery flies in the face of both Americans’ personal experience and widely available economic information. (“Data for the United States has been decidedly weak over the past couple of months, with private-sector job growth lagging expectations and the unemployment rate stuck at 9.5 percent. That has fed concerns the economy could be at risk of a renewed recession or face a debilitating bout of deflation as the bleak jobs market pressures incomes and prices.”) As the economy sags and public confidence does as well, the president’s insistence that things are looking up further erodes his credibility.
He keeps saying things that simply aren’t so. The public is no longer willing to extend him the benefit of the doubt and will take its wrath out on the president’s party in less than three months. Perhaps then the administration will acknowledge Obamanomics has failed and try a different approach to restoring growth and job creation.