The answer is 'no'

Key question of 2012 campaign has Democrats squirming

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The question, surprisingly enough, has actually been asked this week by the liberal media, principally ABC’s George Stephanopoulos and CBS’s Bob Schieffer: Are Americans better off now than they were four years ago?

It’s a question that helped propel Ronald Reagan to the White House in 1980, after the answer was quickly obvious to most Americans about the Jimmy Carter debacle.

The answer also is plain today, and a majority in The Hill newspaper’s poll said so: No.

Yet, answers coming out of the Democratic camp were described as “halting” in an Associated Press story Tuesday. Halting? More like completely incoherent.

On Sunday, Democratic Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley answered that, “No,” Americans aren’t better off – while quickly attempting to blame George W. Bush, who retired nearly four years ago now. A day later, O’Malley made a U-turn, claiming, “We are clearly better off as a country, because we are now creating jobs rather than losing jobs ...”

Vice President Joe Biden claimed we’re better off at a Detroit campaign rally, though he added it was too hot at the rally to go into details.

Asked the question multiple times Sunday by Stephanopoulos on ABC’s This Week, President Obama’s senior White House adviser, David Plouffe, dodged it again and again.

“Dems continue to dodge 4-years-ago question,” read a headline on Politico.com.

Even ultra-liberal Slate online magazine, in an article headlined “Democrats Struggle With ‘Are Americans Better Off Question,’ ” noted, “(Obama) campaign strategist David Axelrod also declined to give a straight answer to the question ...”

There can be little question as to the answer, if you’re honest, that Americans as a whole are not better off than they were four years ago.

Now certainly the 2008 crash took a heavy toll, and Mr. Obama was dealt a difficult hand. Absolutely. But a report last week shows that real median household income has dropped 4.8 percent even since the supposed “recovery” began in June 2009.

That number alone indicates that things have gotten worse on Mr. Obama’s watch.

But that’s just a snapshot of whether things have gotten better or worse for Americans. Another, very germane, question is whether things have gotten better for America.

Clearly, that answer is “no” as well.

While things have continued to stay the same or get worse for Americans, the balance sheet has become decidedly worse off for the country as a whole. This administration – and a Democrat-led Senate that hasn’t even tried to pass a federal budget in three years – has saddled younger and future generations with some $5 trillion more in debt, a record amount by far for any administration.

Young people who are so starry-eyed over Mr. Obama’s smooth charms may not like it in a few years when they start paying on his debt.

If they can find a job, that is.

Consider just the future tax implications for today’s 20-somethings: By 2045, says the Heritage Foundation, Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security will eat up every single dollar of federal tax revenue.

We are, frankly, surprised that the Democrat-loving media stooped to ask the “Are you better off” question. Apparently, the Democrats are just as surprised, as they were wholly unprepared to answer it. Or maybe just not eager.

The Obama campaign has made repeated attempts to politically assassinate the Republican candidates, and the tone of Mr. Obama’s “Sarcasm Over America” tour may be cute and funny, but these, too, are an artful dodge of the painful truth: Neither Americans nor America are better off after four years of this.

We eagerly look forward to hearing why four more would be any different.

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ultrarnr
910
Points
ultrarnr 09/04/12 - 11:54 pm
5
16
We are better off
Unpublished

This year is different from 1980 in an important respect. When Mr. Reagan asked voters whether they were better off, he listed four yardsticks: inflation, employment, America’s standing in the world and their sense of security. This time, inflation is virtually nonexistent, and Mr. Obama has compiled a solid record in foreign policy and in national security.

faithson
5156
Points
faithson 09/05/12 - 12:06 am
5
16
demand

pray tell how a President McCain would have created the 'demand' our consumer based economy is dependent on. All in all it seems the man who is in power has done a pretty good job considering the republican ideologues he has had to deal with.

specsta
6505
Points
specsta 09/05/12 - 01:21 am
7
17
Much Better Off, Thank You...

Better off? This is a no-brainer - YES, YES, YES!

Family members have health insurance that did not have it before. Medications cost less. Expanded health care for children enacted. Osama bin Laden is as dead as a doornail. America's respect among other nations has returned. Human rights are being protected.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in 2009 was passed. Protected the auto industry from collapsing. Ended the War in Iraq. Reversed Bush's torture policies. Improved school nutrition.

And the list goes on.

The only folks who aren't better off are the ones who are so filled with hatred, they would rather see our President fail, than show respect and support him.

The people who are "squirming" are the right-wingers and Republicans who realize that the two flunkies they've nominated to run against Obama don't have a gnat's chance of winning.

Riverman1
83433
Points
Riverman1 09/05/12 - 06:35 am
13
5
Everyone is fed up

The economy is in terrible shape and it's obvious to all. But Obama refuses to take the right steps to get it moving. I believe even many liberals are ready to try some good ole American capitalism now. Everyone is fed up. Few will vote to continue along THIS path.

seenitB4
86577
Points
seenitB4 09/05/12 - 06:35 am
11
2
Better off...nnaaah

But I'm not crazy enough to blame all of this on the Dems.....both sides caused this financial mess.....we sent our jobs away for the last 20+ years....How is that working for us??
Giving more freebies to the needy only makes them MORE NEEDY...it will never be the answer....
We have to make things again---right here in this country----sometimes I think tv makes us lazy & not very productive.....keeps kids inside when they should be out running & playing...we need to adopt some of the ole ways again.....well yall know what I mean..:)

carcraft
25734
Points
carcraft 09/05/12 - 06:46 am
12
1
Average Unemployment under

Average Unemployment under Bush was 5.2% for 8 years. President Obama told us if we spent $800 Billion Dollars unemployment would not reach 8%. Average unemployment for Obama is 9%.We have not been below 8% since the $800 billion wasted dollars. Gas and food prices are higher. Under employed and poverty rates have increased. Poverty rates went up 15% under Obama into 2010. College graduates who can’t find jobs or are under employed and living at home with their parents is at a record high. Cities and States are going bankrupt and can’t fund their governments (take a look at California). One never knows what laws are enforceable from one moment to the next under the Holder Obama executive order king ship. States that enforce laws are being sued and people that have been identified as being here illegally are walking off and committing brutal crimes to include rape, murder and killing people while drunk driving. Contracts that would create jobs are vetoed (such a Keystone pipe line) while billions are wasted on “green“ energy garbage like Solyndra and Fisker motors. Companies that don’t toe Obama’s line are sued like Gibson Guitar and Boeing! No we are not better off and once the empty suit in the executive office leaves we will be better off. The American debt clock just skipped to over $16 trillion. If Obama keeps increasing the national debt by over 1 trillion a year we will soon envy Greece and Spain!

Rhetor
1007
Points
Rhetor 09/05/12 - 06:58 am
4
14
Compared with inauguration

Compared with inauguration day four years ago, we are unquestionably much better off. This does not change the fact that the economy is still a mess, but the claims in this editorial are based on the way too many people have forgotten how bad things were four years ago.

Riverman1
83433
Points
Riverman1 09/05/12 - 07:08 am
13
4
By the way, anyone checked

By the way, anyone checked food prices recently? That's something we forget about. I bought some ribeyes at Costco's the other day and had to leave my spare tire with them to pay the bill.

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 09/05/12 - 07:15 am
7
12
"Giving more freebies to the

"Giving more freebies to the needy only makes them MORE NEEDY" Just like eating makes you hungrier.

Riverman1
83433
Points
Riverman1 09/05/12 - 07:19 am
10
3
In other words, redistribute

In other words, redistribute the wealth.

carcraft
25734
Points
carcraft 09/05/12 - 07:27 am
11
2
Uemployment was less 4 years

Uemployment was less 4 years ago, gas prices were lower four years ago and we were $6 trillion less in debt four years ago, come again?

carcraft
25734
Points
carcraft 09/05/12 - 07:34 am
11
2
Of course there is some fun

Of course there is some fun in all this. Obama's solution is to raise taxes, and spend more on infrastructure and hiring more police, firefighters and teachers. Who knows, next Biden and Obama will visit a Catapiller plant and talk about shovel ready jobs and the summer of recovery. BWAHAHAHAHA What was Einstein's definition of insanity? Wasn't it Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a differant result?

seenitB4
86577
Points
seenitB4 09/05/12 - 07:34 am
10
1
ok techfan...how is it working??

You know the ole saying....give a man a fish or teach him to fish...that is what we need more of today...TEACH THEM TO FISH!

We are running out of free fish...just in case ya haven't noticed.

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 09/05/12 - 07:42 am
7
8
Teach a man to fish, and

Teach a man to fish, and he'll sit in a boat all day drinking beer.

Riverman1
83433
Points
Riverman1 09/05/12 - 07:50 am
11
1
Teach a man to brew his own

Teach a man to brew his own beer, while you're at it.

soapy_725
43676
Points
soapy_725 09/05/12 - 07:51 am
1
0
Even Stalin had to use
Unpublished

capitalism every "Five Year Plan" to keep Communism afloat. Actually allowing farmer to grow and market their crops without collectivism. Even though "collectivism" is the far superior social order. And with a healthy dose of foreign aid from the good old USA. Even thought collectivism is a proven success story. Cuba, N. Korea, USSR,

seenitB4
86577
Points
seenitB4 09/05/12 - 07:59 am
9
1
My kin did brew

We need a nation of brewers again...NOT breeders ...:)

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 09/05/12 - 07:59 am
4
7
Then he probably wouldn't

Then he probably wouldn't make it to the boat at all.

carcraft
25734
Points
carcraft 09/05/12 - 08:05 am
9
1
It is funny but true that if

It is funny but true that if unemployment were today what it was when Obama took office (7.4%) Obama would claim the economy was recovering and happy days are here again.. LOL

seenitB4
86577
Points
seenitB4 09/05/12 - 08:05 am
6
0
First lesson in making shine...:)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tSbteUHn2Vo

This was going on in the 40s & 50s right here in Richmond county...my kin made many a jar at Tobacco Rd & Morgan Rd sites.......this video is as true as it gets....

CobaltGeorge
157759
Points
CobaltGeorge 09/05/12 - 08:23 am
6
3
If anybody missed the DNC

If anybody missed the DNC last night, go back to specsta - 01:21.

Complete coverage except for speakers from the dead.

Angie H
4300
Points
Angie H 09/05/12 - 08:26 am
9
3
It seems that Techfan is all

It seems that Techfan is all for the Obama plan to keep people dependent on the government...so they will vote for him.

dichotomy
32672
Points
dichotomy 09/05/12 - 08:47 am
12
2
"Family members have health

"Family members have health insurance that did not have it before"

Who is paying for that?

"Medications cost less"

No they don't. Somebody else is paying the difference. Who is paying for that?

"Expanded health care for children enacted"

Who is paying for that?

"The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in 2009 was passed. Protected the auto industry from collapsing."

Who is paying for that?

I know who is paying for all of those. The answer is ME. And I, most definitely, am NOT better off.

"America's respect among other nations has returned"

From who?.....Hugo Chaves or Vladimir Putin. Nobody respects us since Obama took office. They all know he is a capitulator. Our frineds don't trust him and our enemies don't fear him. Even his "I'll have more flexibility after the election" buddy Vladimir is LHAO at him.

15% unelmployment. There is about 10% who are NOT better off.

$16 TRILLION in debt. No working taxPAYER is better off there.

49% of the people not paying federal income tax. Well, there is 51% of us who are NOT better off.

Health insurance rates up between 20% and 40%. None of the 85% of the people who had health insurance are better off.

I guess your point of view on who is better off depends on whether you are latched on to a teat or you are the one feeding the sow (female pig for you non-farm types).

Angie H
4300
Points
Angie H 09/05/12 - 08:48 am
9
1
If Obama isn't in favor of

If Obama isn't in favor of keeping people dependent, then why does his administration run commercials that encourage more people to get on food stamps? Very successful commercials, I might add.

seenitB4
86577
Points
seenitB4 09/05/12 - 08:56 am
7
0
About that free stuff

Truth is---We don't have ANY free stuff...

Someone pays for every pill you put in your mouth---every visit to the Dr---every college lesson--every cell phone---every grocery item--housing---bus to school--schools--unemployment---soc sec--roads--library--it takes your tax money---OUR tax money....so please get over this notion that anything is free......
We have to re-arrange the chairs on the deck....make that money last longer & actually pay for the important needs in our country.....I hope that happens in November.

shrimp for breakfast
5450
Points
shrimp for breakfast 09/05/12 - 09:15 am
9
1
They wouldn't want me to answer this question.

I am better off than I was 4 years ago.
The country is better off than it was 4 years ago.
The problem is that we were in such a perilous position when Obama took office that the only place to go was up.
We still have a long way to go. We didn't get into it overnight so it's going to take some time. It appears everyont wants results immediately when that's not going to happen.
Whether Romney is a better choice? I don't know.
The simple solution is that this country cannot spend more money than it takes in. When this happens we aquire debt. Some tough choices need to be made and there is no way to please everyone. We waste so much money on things that are not essential. In my house if I cannot afford something then I don't get it. Sure I could put it on a credit card which gives me the illusion of having money, but the bill WILL COME!
If I don't pay the bill then I am hit with INTREST which puts me even deeper in debt. We need a leader who understands these things and can stop the madness,

Tullie
2930
Points
Tullie 09/05/12 - 09:33 am
6
3
Specsta

America's respect among other nations has returned. Human rights are being protected.

Where do you get your information?

Bizkit
31230
Points
Bizkit 09/05/12 - 09:33 am
8
2
No way we are better off.

No way we are better off. Gas prices have doubled, the cost of health care is still soaring and Obamacare is precipitating an impending physician shortage, Obamacare’s plan is to force million of medicare into Medicaid, our credit rating has gone down, we have nearly lost all credibility as a super power because of leading behind with diplomacy. The Dems can only still blame Bush, then have the audacity to blame the economy of Bush economic policy which is patently untrue (historically and any other way-but just like the Dem lie that only the rich got the Bush tax cuts) when it was the housing market precipitated by Dem policies. The truth is entitlements are over 50% of budget, 20% defense, 18% and Republicans like Nixon and Bush raised it too. But now we see at least one person Ryan has the audacity to even address it while the Dems stick their head in sands and still believe they can spend their way out of debt. Insanity.

justthefacts
21696
Points
justthefacts 09/05/12 - 09:49 am
8
2
Perspective

Better off? A record 47M on food stamps now. The program costs have DOUBLED during Obama's term.

allhans
23603
Points
allhans 09/05/12 - 11:23 am
6
1
Those on Medicare and

Those on Medicare and Medicaid won't be better off beginning in 2013 when the doctors stop taking Medicare and Medicaid due to Obama taking 718 billion dollars from the program To fund Obamacare.

Those folks who are living good without working are elated..

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