By Bill Maher
President Obama took office, the banking industry has been regulated,
the auto industry has been saved, the stock market has more than doubled
and the unemployment rate has dropped from 10-something to 7-something,
its lowest rate in over four years. Or, as Fox News is reporting it, "a
dismal record of failed economic policies."
In the housing
market, sales are climbing and burst-bubble home prices are beginning to
inch back up. Last month, it was announced that existing home sales
jumped to their highest level in over two years and residential
construction is up 29% over 2011.
But all this is just numbers
unless American consumers start to sense solid economic ground under
their feet and get comfortable with the idea of spending again. The
economy is fickle and fragile and that’s why consumer perception is so
important. Which brings us to the latest news on an index called
consumer sentiment: The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan survey of how consumers feel about the economy came in at a surprising 83.1, its highest in five years.
Also the independent Economic Cycle Research Institute, which measures future economic expansion, says our economy’s annualized growth rate has accelerated to its fastest pace in over a year.
is back, baby! Well, yes, unless a full one-half of the American
government makes it its mission to convince the public that America is
not back and that our economy is free falling and will likely be
decimated beyond repair if a certain someone is re-elected. I won't say
whom, but I'll look at the guilty party and yell, "You lie" at his State
of the Union address.
What you'll hear from Romney/Ryan or, for
that matter, Boehner, Cantor or anyone on Fox News is, "as Scranton
goes, so goes America." Which may help them politically, but it's a lie
that does harm to America. When the economy's health hinges so much on
consumer confidence and sentiment, doesn't it border on treason for a
political party of presumably trusted leaders to claim everything is
going to shit despite an ever-amassing mountain of evidence to the