Americans harbor a negative stereotype of a used car salesmen as someone who will try to sell you a car by emphasizing the positives and hiding those ugly flaws that often turn your shiny new purchase into a lemon. That's what the President did on Thursday, when he began to hype his record on the economy.
While he can talk about all kinds of economic positives since taking office, there is really only one thing that my countrymen use to measure the economy: their paychecks.
And, this is where the Obama-economy falls far short.
In 2009, when the President took office, the median household income was $51,190. In the latest report, the Census Bureau shows the median household income in 2013 was $51,900 or up just 1.3%. That's an average increase of only $177 a year. At the same time, the prices of many of the things we buy have gone through the roof. Beef, for example, has gone up 56% since 2010. In fact, most food prices, this year alone, are rising faster than both incomes and inflation. Additionally, despite a wealth of low-cost natural gas, electricity rates are soaring because of the high cost of adding wind and solar.
This simple fact is why Obama, in poll after poll, gets horrible marks on his handling of the economy. In a recent Pew poll, respondents only gave the President a 39% approval. Worse than that was the recent Gallup poll where he only scored a 35% approval on the economy.
Obama appears to be on a fool's errand. He runs around the country, making speech after speech, telling Americans how great the economy is. People aren't going to buy it because they clearly aren't feeling it.
Obama Touts Economic Gains Under His Watch: http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory/obama-speak-economy-northwestern-25909807
Household Incomes 2009 and 2010: http://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/acsbr10-02.pdf
Five Years Of Recovery Haven’t Boosted The Median Household Income: http://fivethirtyeight.com/datalab/five-years-of-recovery-havent-boosted-the-median-household-income/
Beef prices hit record high: http://money.cnn.com/2014/04/14/news/economy/beef-prices/
As Food Prices Rise, Fed Keeps a Watchful Eye: http://online.wsj.com/articles/as-food-prices-rise-fed-keeps-a-wary-eye-1404672384
Electricity Price Index Soars to New Record at Start of 2014: http://cnsnews.com/news/article/terence-p-jeffrey/electricity-price-index-soars-new-record-start-2014-us-electricity
Summary of Polls: President Obama and the Obama Administration: http://www.pollingreport.com/obama_ad.htm