Obama’s Plunging Polls Correspond To America’s Plunging Economy

President Obama’s biggest calender item yesterday was his scheduled “having a beer” with his good friend Henry Louis Gates and the man that both Gates (directly) and Obama (indirectly) called a racist, Sgt. James Crowley.  By sitting down for a beer, Obama was attempting to turn the giant turd he laid at his fourth prime time news conference in six months (which is how many George Bush gave in 8 entire YEARS btw) into a gold-plated turd.

I hope the three men clink their glasses to Obama’s plummeting poll numbers and America’s plummeting economy while they pondered why ‘Skip’ Gates is such a bigot and why Barry Obama acted so stupidly by claiming the Cambridge police “acted stupidly.”

Rasmussen has Obama at a -12 approval rating measuring the difference between those who strongly approve and those who strongly disapprove of his presidency; and he is now at only 48% approval – a far cry from his halcyon days of being in the high 60s.  Only 34% of likely voters think the country is headed in the right direction.  And 49% believe America’s best days have come and gone, versus only 38% who think the country will improve.

The hope that once swelled the hearts of Obama voters is fading fast – especially in the swing states he needs to win to have any chance at either future re-election or even current relevance.  “Hope and change” now means, “I hope I still have some change left in my pocket at the end of the month.”

As U.S. recession bites, Ohio hopes fade for Obama
Thu Jul 30, 2009 11:12am EDT
By Nick Carey

TOLEDO, Ohio (Reuters) – Hope and jobs are in short supply in Ohio eight months after President Barack Obama won the recession-battered state in the 2008 election with promises of a better future.

“People were looking for a savior to get us out of this mess and that’s why they voted for Obama,” said Jeff Fravor, 55, a retired train conductor on his way to breakfast on the outskirts of Toledo.

“I’ve nothing against Obama personally, but he’s new to the job and ‘hope’ won’t fix this mess.”

Candidate Obama delivered his message over and over again in Ohio, a politically diverse battleground state that often decides presidential elections. Obama went back to the state last week with an approval rating below 50 percent.

A Quinnipiac University opinion poll released on July 7 showed the Democratic president’s popularity in America’s seventh most populous state had fallen to 49 percent from 62 per cent in May. Even worse for Obama, 48 percent said they disapproved of his handling of the U.S. economy, with 46 percent approving.

The reason for the poll drop? Rising unemployment.

The downturn has pummeled Ohio’s manufacturing base.

“As jobs have gone away, that has created a true focus here on job creation,” said Andrew Doehrel, head of the Ohio Chamber of Commerce. “People look at what’s been done on a federal level in terms of bailouts and stimulus and they see that this has not equated to anything more than lost jobs in Ohio.”

Ohio has not been the state hardest hit by the U.S. recession that began in December 2007, but it is not far off.

Unemployment in the state of 11.5 million people reached 11.1 percent in June, compared with the national rate of 9.5 percent, making it the seventh highest rate in the country. Michigan was first with a rate of 15.2 percent.

TWICE THE UNEMPLOYMENT

Ohio’s unemployment has nearly doubled from 5.7 percent in January 2008. That is not a good start for Obama in a state with 20 electoral votes that could be vital for his re-election effort in 2012.

“It’s not a surprise Obama’s numbers have fallen here and they’ll continue to go down as long as jobs keep being lost here,” said Jim Rokakis, treasurer for Cuyahoga County, which includes Cleveland where unemployment hit 10.1 percent in June. “Americans always want a quick fix to problems, but they are going to relearn patience this time round.”

Toledo in northwest Ohio has been especially hard hit by the recession, in particular because of the auto industry-related plants that dot the area.

“Obama set expectations too high here and six months later, things haven’t got better, so some people are losing hope,” said John Johnson, branch manager of the Southeastern Container Inc plant in nearby Bowling Green, which makes plastic bottles for Coca-Cola Co..

Johnson said he had to turn away qualified workers from auto-related plastic companies seeking work. “When people are out of work for a long time, they become very impatient.”

Unemployment hit 14.2 percent in June in Toledo, a city of about 315,000 people. Many of the roads in and out of the city are in a poor state of repair and many downtown stores have closed down. Manufacturing brought the city wealth, so plant closures have taken a heavy toll.

‘DEPRESSION’

“We’re not just in a recession here, it’s a depression,” said Toledo Mayor Carty Finkbeiner. “This downturn has left Ohioans wondering if we’ve lost our place in the sun.”

According to a midyear survey from real estate service company CB Richard Ellis Reichle Klein, Toledo’s retail vacancy rate hit a record level of 14.6 percent.

“Everybody is having a hard time just existing right now,” said Bob Shelley, 72, who runs Shelley Rubber Stamp & Sign Inc for his father in downtown Toledo. “All businesses have been hit, so everybody’s giving everybody a break right now.”

Shelley said he felt Obama had an overcrowded agenda.

“He’s trying to satisfy everyone at once and he’s trying to rush everything through Congress,” he said. “But if you rush like that, you’re bound to make mistakes.”

Angie Carter, 32, a market research analyst in downtown Toledo, said she voted for Obama and he just needed time.

“This is a recession and we live in a manufacturing state,” she said on a cigarette break. “It’s going to take time to turn it around.”

When touting his $787 billion stimulus package earlier this year, Obama cautioned that a recovery would take time.

The president also has time to recover in Ohio if jobs come back. Aware of its importance, he was there last week to tout his healthcare plans. The last candidate who won Ohio but lost the election was Republican Richard Nixon in 1960.

Rokakis said Obama’s speech in Cleveland on July 23 was no accident.

“Obama is a smart man and he knows how important Ohio is,”

The article portrays Obama as having said that recovery would take time under his stimulus.  It fails to mention that the Obama administration – in pushing the failed stimulus package through Congress – predicted that unemployment would rise no higher than 8% if his stimulus passed.

As bad as things are now, there is no realistic reason to believe they will get better.  Meredith Whitney, the Wall Street analyst who gained much credibility in predicting the mortgage meltdown, is predicting unemployment will rise to 13% or higher.

The date for a housing market recovery stretches to 2015.

Obama’s deficits are soaring to stunning levels.  Back in March the Congressional Budget Office estimated that Obama’s “huge annual budget deficits that would force the nation to borrow nearly $9.3 trillion over the next decade — $2.3 trillion more than the president predicted when he unveiled his budget request just one month ago.” And that mindbogglingly ginormous figure doesn’t include the trillion plus hole we would dig passing Obama’s health care plan.

As the Wall Street Journal’s Michael Boskin puts it:

Mr. Obama’s $3.6 trillion budget blueprint, by his own admission, redefines the role of government in our economy and society. The budget more than doubles the national debt held by the public, adding more to the debt than all previous presidents — from George Washington to George W. Bush — combined.”

Obama has blamed President Bush for the deficits, but not only has he racked up far more debt than did Bush, but as a Senator Obama actually voted for the very Bush-budget that Obama is now blaming on Bush – including the $700 billion TARP bailout.

It is also worth knowing that the federal government has exposed itself to $23.7 trillion in risks with its bailouts since TARP (which is turning out to be a thinly disguised anagram for “TRAP”).

Those massive deficits guarantee future economic pain, but recent developments are beginning to show that our future pain may already be here right now:

Weak Treasury Auctions Raise Worries About US Debt Burden
By: Reuters     Wednesday, 29 Jul 2009

The U.S. Treasury sold $39 billion in five-year debt Wednesday in an auction that drew poor demand, raising worries over the cost of financing the government’s burgeoning budget deficit.

It was the second lackluster showing in as many days,  convincing analysts that the stellar results of debt auctions just a few weeks ago were a fluke and that Thursday’s $28 billion seven-year offering could suffer a similar fate.

Under the weight of the ballooning deficit, the government has raised auction volumes and analysts now wonder whether the strain on the market is showing.

“Obviously everyone is inferring that tomorrow’s won’t be good either,” said James Combias, head of government bond trading at Mizuho Securities USA in New York. “Maybe you will see more interest tomorrow but I think the increase in the auctions and the size of them may be starting to have an effect. These are very large auctions.”

We are witnessing a terrifying unfolding scenario in which “Interest due on the debt could easily be $1 trillion toward the end of the next decade.”

Like the Texas Hold’em player who pushes every last dime into the center of a poker table, the federal government is now “all in” with its commitment to push the national debt to 50% of GDP. The Congressional Budget Office believes that the Treasury will have to borrow nearly $2 trillion this year. None of that is new news, but what is beginning to emerge is a picture of a government which has narrowed its options for improving the economy down to one. Either GDP turns sharply up next year or the deficit will become an unmanageable burden. The Treasury will have to default on interest payments if sharply raising taxes in 2010 and 2011 does not bring IRS receipts to historic highs. That would not appear to be likely with unemployment moving toward 10% and American corporate earnings badly crippled.

You may not know it, but your government under Obama has gambled this country’s future – and gambled poorly.  Obama believed his $787 billion stimulus – which was actually scored by the CBO to be $3.27 trillion – would stimulate big, but it has been a total dud.  And as we continue to pile on debt on top of debt on top of debt, and combine that with continuing high unemployment and low economic output, the result is insolvency and doom.  And it is already beginning to rush toward us like an enraged Kodiak bear.

Some are pointing at the seemingly recovering Dow Index to argue that the worst is behind us and that we are on the road to recovery.  As reported by Reuters:

No Economic Recovery in Sight, Only Inflation
Mon May 11, 2009 9:01am EDT

FORT LEE, N.J., May 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The National Inflation Association yesterday released the following statement to its http://inflation.us members:

“Wall Street would like you to believe that the Dow Jones’ recent 33% rally from March’s low is due to improving economic fundamentals, but it is our belief this rally is due to nothing but inflation.

“Jobs data released on Friday shows that U.S. employers cut 539,000 jobs in April, the fewest since October. However, these numbers were artificially strong due to the U.S. government increasing their payrolls by 72,000, which included the hiring of about 60,000 temporary workers in preparation for the 2010 census.

“Government jobs are non-productive jobs that normally get paid for by taxpayers. However, because the U.S. already has a huge budget deficit with tax revenues likely to decline substantially, these jobs will be paid for through inflation. An increase in government jobs is not a sign that the economy is improving, but only a sign that we are digging our economy into a deeper hole that will ultimately lead to the U.S. dollar collapsing.

“Even Warren Buffett, who is a huge supporter of Obama and has defended his economic policies, said last week that with political leaders showing little inclination to raise taxes, the only way to pay for excess spending will be by inflating the currency and shrinking the value of the dollar.

The worst of the recession is not behind us. Nominally, anything can happen to the Dow Jones. If the Federal Reserve prints enough money, the Dow Jones could go back to 14,000, but it won’t mean anything if it costs $2,000 to fill your refrigerator with groceries.

Obama’s spending has put us into a genuine crisis: we are now in a situation where any recovery will be immediately followed by sharp increases in inflation, unless government either sharply raise taxes across the board (which will undermine the economy) or unless they sharply raise interest rates (which will also undermine the economy).  Both options are politically unacceptable.

You’d better be thinking about getting a wheelbarrow, because you’re eventually going to need to one to bring enough cash to the grocery store to buy your daily bread.

That was my long-winded way of saying that Obama’s polls are likely to drop to the point where angry villagers armed with pitchforks and torches start storming Castle Obamastein as the economy drops right along with his popularity by the end of his one-term presidency.

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7 Responses to “Obama’s Plunging Polls Correspond To America’s Plunging Economy”

  1. Norris Hall Says:

    Economists are starting to say that the economy has “turned the corner”. That the recession is coming to an end. That the worst is over. We are not turning the corner. We are headed in the wrong direction

    This is the worst thing that could happen! If we can’t show that Obama has failed, it means that everything he has done..from massive government spending, to bank bailouts, to “Cash for Clunkers” is working. This will be used against fiscal conservatives for years to come as proof that government intervention CAN sometimes work.
    We cannot allow this to happen.
    It’s important that all who believe in free markets keep up the talk that the “economy is getting worse.”
    Keep praying that the unemployment rate keeps getting worse. Keep hoping that GM falls flat on it’s face and goes completely out of business. Keep your fingers crossed that the stock market starts to head south again,. We must keep focusing on the failures, rather than the successes.
    If people start spending money…that might jumpstart the economy and put America back on the road to recovery.
    We cannot allow that to happen!!!

    We must Keep talking gloom and doom!!
    Our conservative theology demands it

  2. Michael Eden Says:

    You’re pretty good at being smarmy.

    Tell you what: I hope you wholeheartedly supported President Bush’s leadership over the country. Because you’d REALLY be a galaxy-sucking hypocrite if you bitched about Bush but demand that conservatives such as myself start goose-stepping to Obama.

    But, of course, you’re a liberal. So you demonized Bush all along, blamed him for everything, and undermined him at every turn. And now you self-righteously lecture conservatives that they should support Obama for the good of the country.

    We’ve got all kinds of problems awaiting us. And, yeah, I AM going to blame Obama for them.

    Peter Schiff, Pres Euro Pacific Capital: “The recession might be coming to an end; the problem is the depression is just getting started.”

    Newsweek trumpets the recession is over. But it’s just a temporary ‘good time’ like the high you get if you do too much crack cocaine; with the stimulus being an artificial stimulant that gets us deeper and deeper into debt. Remember the problem was we took on too much debt; well, now we have even more debt than when the recession began.

    Our GDP could collapse overnight, but our tens of trillions of dollars in debt imposed by Obama will still be there. And everything we’re doing to fight the recession is making it worse.

    Consider the cash for clunkers bill. Can you think of anything more stupid than taking fully paid-for-cars that work and paying people to destroy them so they can borrow more money to buy cars they can’t afford? That’s like FDR destroying the 3 million baby pigs in order to drive up food prices – even as millions of Americans were in food lines.

  3. Jim Says:

    In this thread, Michael exposes the problems of taking too much crack.

    Keep at it Michael!

  4. smrstrauss Says:

    When Obama took office, the Dow Jones average was at 8,279. It is now at over 9,400.

  5. Michael Eden Says:

    That’s interesting, smstrauss.

    Obama himself said that the stock market wasn’t that big of a deal earlier. what was it he said?

    “You know, it bobs up and down day to day,” Mr. Obama said. “And if you spend all your time worrying about that, then you’re probably going to get the long-term strategy wrong.”

    I guess it suddenly matters now because it’s up?

    It’s interesting that a Democrat would point to the Dow, where greedy rich white Wall Streeters make their money on the backs of the poor. During the Bush years, for the most part, the Dow was high – and the constant Democrat argument was to decry such an indicator as representing economic health. That’s kind of funny.

    Let me quote a couple of things I pointed out in an article I wrote in December of last year. First I cited an article pointing out some of the history of the Great Depression:

    The Great Depression was not triggered by a sudden, total collapse in the stock market. The stock market turned upward in early 1930, returning to early 1929 levels by April, though still almost 30 percent below the peak of September 1929.[7] Together, government and business actually spent more in the first half of 1930 than in the corresponding period of the previous year. But consumers, many of whom had suffered severe losses in the stock market the previous year, cut back their expenditures by ten percent, and a severe drought ravaged the agricultural heartland of the USA beginning in the summer of 1930.

    In early 1930, credit was ample and available at low rates, but people were reluctant to add new debt by borrowing. By May 1930, auto sales had declined to below the levels of 1928. Prices in general began to decline, but wages held steady in 1930, then began to drop in 1931. Conditions were worst in farming areas, where commodity prices plunged, and in mining and logging areas, where unemployment was high and there were few other jobs. The decline in the American economy was the factor that pulled down most other countries at first, then internal weaknesses or strengths in each country made conditions worse or better. Frantic attempts to shore up the economies of individual nations through protectionist policies, such as the 1930 U.S. Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act and retaliatory tariffs in other countries, exacerbated the collapse in global trade. By late in 1930, a steady decline set in which reached bottom by March 1933.

    And then I immediately said this:

    Keep in mind that OUR stock market began to tank only a little over two months ago. And if the exact same thing were to happen now that it did to the United States in the 1930s, we actually would expect our market to pick up significantly in the coming months – and our economy to even appear to be rebounding – shortly before a downward slope into collapse that would occur one to three years later. It wasn’t until March 1933 – 3 years and 4 months after the Black Tuesday stock market crash – that the bottom really fell out of our economy.

    In other words, I PREDICTED the stock market would make some substantial recovery, and that there would be an appearance that things were going hunky dory (or at least a manufactured appearance generated by the media).

    So the only thing that you’ve demonstrated with your market quote is that we’re right on the script I predicted eight months ago.

  6. Norris Hall Says:

    We can’t let a little good news grab headlines and detract from efforts to expose Obama’s socialistic programs.
    Economist are starting to say things like “the economy is stablilizing” “stocks are rising” “we are no longer in danger of the 2nd great depression”.
    This may be good news to some but to me it is distracting from the essential message that needs to hammered home…..”nothing Obama has done will work”
    We still need keep our fingers that Obama fails.
    If the economy does turn around and next year starts looking up, the liberals are going beat their chests and proclaim “government big spending helped save America”
    That can’t be allowed to happen
    The unemployment numbers may be our best hope. If we come out of recession this year we can still point to the high unemployment numbers as proof that socialism is a failure.
    So far it’s looking good. Economist are predicting double digit unemployment.
    That should play to our advantage during the 2010 elections.
    Personally I am praying that there is a lot more bad news is ahead. Whenever newcasters report bad economic news a silent cheer gets caught in my throat. Whenever there is good news of any kind I get moody and dispondent. And that’s not me sounding like some kind of Anti-American. That’s me and everyone who voted against the socialist in the White HOuse.
    Rush Limbaugh said it best
    “We’re talking about my country, the United States of America, my nieces, my nephews, your kids, your grandkids. Why in the world do we want to saddle them with more liberalism and socialism? Why would I want to do that? So I can answer it, four words, “I hope he fails.”

  7. Michael Eden Says:

    This is my response to anyone who wants to say, “See? Obama has led us into the Promised Land of milk and honey.”

    In a previous comment, someone said the stock market has come back up – rah rah for Obama. After pointing out that Obama poo-pooed the Dow when it was crapping and said it wasn’t a real indicator (and therefore if it wasn’t an indicator when it was down it can’t be one when it’s up), I further responded:

    Let me quote a couple of things I pointed out in an article I wrote in December of last year. First I cited an article pointing out some of the history of the Great Depression:

    The Great Depression was not triggered by a sudden, total collapse in the stock market. The stock market turned upward in early 1930, returning to early 1929 levels by April, though still almost 30 percent below the peak of September 1929.[7] Together, government and business actually spent more in the first half of 1930 than in the corresponding period of the previous year. But consumers, many of whom had suffered severe losses in the stock market the previous year, cut back their expenditures by ten percent, and a severe drought ravaged the agricultural heartland of the USA beginning in the summer of 1930.

    In early 1930, credit was ample and available at low rates, but people were reluctant to add new debt by borrowing. By May 1930, auto sales had declined to below the levels of 1928. Prices in general began to decline, but wages held steady in 1930, then began to drop in 1931. Conditions were worst in farming areas, where commodity prices plunged, and in mining and logging areas, where unemployment was high and there were few other jobs. The decline in the American economy was the factor that pulled down most other countries at first, then internal weaknesses or strengths in each country made conditions worse or better. Frantic attempts to shore up the economies of individual nations through protectionist policies, such as the 1930 U.S. Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act and retaliatory tariffs in other countries, exacerbated the collapse in global trade. By late in 1930, a steady decline set in which reached bottom by March 1933.

    And then I immediately said this:

    Keep in mind that OUR stock market began to tank only a little over two months ago. And if the exact same thing were to happen now that it did to the United States in the 1930s, we actually would expect our market to pick up significantly in the coming months – and our economy to even appear to be rebounding – shortly before a downward slope into collapse that would occur one to three years later. It wasn’t until March 1933 – 3 years and 4 months after the Black Tuesday stock market crash – that the bottom really fell out of our economy.

    In other words, I PREDICTED the stock market would make some substantial recovery, and that there would be an appearance that things were going hunky dory (or at least a manufactured appearance generated by the media).

    By 2011, half of all homes in America will be “underwater,” meaning the mortgages will be higher than the home is actually worth. And the rest of the ARMs will be “coming home to roost” in 2010 and 2011. There is no possible way that this won’t have a devastating effect on the economy.

    There are so many reasons to be skeptical of any kind of meaningful recovery. But, even if there IS a real recovery, there is good reason to believe it will be swallowed up by skyrocketing inflation.

    Our deficit was announced today to be nearly $1.3 trillion – THREE TIMES what Bush’s worst deficit in 2008 was. The spending and debt is going to eat us alive.

    Health care is critical. If it passes with a “public option,” this country is doomed. The trillions of dollars (because the CBO is ALWAYS way under in its forecasts) it will cost will be the anvil that broke the camel’s back.

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