America's sky is falling. A
Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll conducted last month found that
78 percent of Americans think that the country isheading in the wrong direction.
Of course, almost 4 in 5 Americans think the country is heading to heck in a handbasket. The news media are stuck in one gear
when itcomes to reporting economic news - Armageddon.
As Hillary Rodham Clinton supporters so aptly noted, many journalists are besotted with Barack Obama. Thatmakes them open to any bad news that can be tacked onto Republican George W. Bush. But
it's more than liberal bias. Journalists are convinced that theAmerican economy is collapsing and going down the tube, because our industry is collapsing and going down the tube.
So if you saythe economy is "slowing," as Republican presidential candidate John McCain has said, you're insensitive. If you are in touch, you are supposed to ignore the 0.6-percent GDP growth inthe fourth-quarter of 2007 and 1 percent growth in the first-quarter of 2008, because that belies the belief that the U.S. economy is in recession. Remember the "misery index" - thecombined rate of unemployment and inflation that peaked at 22 percent under President Jimmy Carter? Forget it. Not enough misery. In 2004, Democratic presidential candidate JohnKerry had to throw in extra statistics to inflate the Bush misery index, because the combined unemployment and I nflation rate was about 8 percent. Lately, news stories report onAmerican fears about inflation, without reporting the rate of inflation. It's about 4.2 percent. With the unemployment rate at 5.5 percent, the "misery index" is just under 10 percent. Yes,gasoline prices are up. Granted, higher
prices at the pump are forcing some Americans to cut back and have had a ripple effect throughout theeconomy.
After years of arguing that greener energy policies don't hurt the economy, but instead create jobs, Democrats and talking heads should be cooing about the new economichorizons unfolding
. The housing bubble burst.
A lot of
including this writer
- have seen the value of their homes drop,
and those who have tosell quickly won't get the price they expected two years ago. Is there anyone who did not think that eventually housing prices would deflate? Is there a new law of economics that says:What goes up cannot come down? The boost in the foreclosure rate to close to 2.5 percent shows the raw side of a market correction made worse by shabby lending practices that luredsome people to buy homes they could not afford. Some families will experience the heartbreak of losing those homes, but also some families, who had been priced out of the market, nowcan reach for that dream. Thanks to improved federal regulations, they stand a better chance of holding onto it. Yes, there is bad news
. The stock market is down and thehousing market probably won't begin to bounce back this
year. The federal deficit is expected to hit $400 billion this year. Worse yet, Washington has promisedSocial Security and Medicare benefits without paying for them. As a result, according to former Comptroller General David Walker, every American owns a $175,000 share of UncleSam's unfunded liabilities.
Health care costs have soared - and that has made it more expensive for businesses to operate and governmentsto provide services.
It doesn't matter that people with cancer and other serious illnesses stand a better chance of beating the disease, and enjoy a higher quality of life. Americansexpect health care costs to rise more slowly, even if they are getting considerably more effective care. And it doesn't help when some adults have to work two part-time jobs to make endsmeet, but don't qualify for health care insurance at either. Do I worry about where this country is headed? Who doesn't? But what concerns me is that
Americans keepexpecting more goodies from their government - with someone else always paying for it.
The other thing that worries me: We have no idea howgood we have it.
2. Alternative Energy Aid Now – Hydro PowerNHA 6/25
/08 National Hydropower Association
Washington, DC (June 25, 2008) - The National Hydropower Association is pleased to report that the House AppropriationsCommittee has allocated $40 million to the Department of Energy's R&D waterpower program. The measure represents a 400 percent increase over the previous allocation and represents a $37 million increase over the administration's budget request. "TheAppropriations Committee showed tremendous leadership today by significantly increasing funding for the DOE waterpower R&D program," stated Linda Church Ciocci, NHA's executive director. "This funding revitalizes the federal program and pavesthe way for bringing new, clean hydropower technologies online in the next 20 years."
3. Federal Spending on other issuesA. IraqSchenwar 6/21
/08 Scoop Independent News