We are far better off today than four years ago.
Four years ago the economy was hemorrhaging 800,000 lost jobs of month, major banks and financial institutions were facing bankruptcy, the stock market was crashing, we were in two unpaid wars and an unbudgeted medical prescription program, all the while providing billions in corporate welfare and tax breaks for the rich. Four years ago the economy was on the brink of a depression. Hundreds of thousands of workers were being laid off and millions of American families were losing their homes due to mortgage lender fraud. Four years ago the average American family lost 40% of its next worth. Unemployment was the highest in fifty years. Stocks prices had fallen eliminating retirement funds. Four years ago the housing bubble burst sending home prices back twenty years and erasing the taxes needed to manage cities and states. Four years ago there was no end in sight for two wars and Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda leaders were outsmarting the world’s leading military power. Four years ago women had no recourse for unequal pay, abusive spouses, or the right to make decisions about their own bodies. Four years ago, 50 million Americans were uninsured. Healthcare costs were skyrocketing. Families paid out of pocket for medical care for their children still in school or not yet married. Despite Republican obstructionism, sabotage, record use of the filibuster to keep legislation from coming to a vote; despite three new jobs programs defeated by Republicans; despite Republican defeats of small business assistance programs; and despite Republican state governors refusing to use federal money for work-ready infrastructure construction, the economy is digging its way out of the Bush Great Recession. Despite the Republican singular goal of ensuring Obama as a one-term Obama president and despite Republicans repeatedly voting against legislation every piece of legislation including those they had previously proposed, we’ve had thirty months of steady job growth, private insurance health care covers 30 million more Americans, our auto industry is again number one in the world, and emergency room usage will soon be covered by private insurance. Home prices across the nation are up, unemployment is down, and taxes are lower than they were four years ago. Corporations have four trillion dollars ready to invest. So vast was the Bush Great Recession, however, it is almost impossible to get our heads around reality. Despite a four-year Republican campaign dedication to American economic failure, we are far better off today than we were four years ago.
Richard Dorsey, Hacienda Heights, CA.