In its annual Labor Day outlook, global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc. says that positive trends in a number of employment indicators, including the pace of layoffs, the unemployment rate and job creation, are shrouded by the fact that the economy began its recovery in a much deeper hole - the deepest since the Great Depression.
"By most accounts, we are barely a year into the recovery. At this point in the previous two recoveries - following the 1991 and 2001 recessions - the job market was actually getting worse," said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer. "Many people are so caught up looking at the weekly and monthly numbers, that they fail to look at the bigger trends, which indicate just how much the job market has improved over the last 12 months."
By every measure - employment, the stock market, GDP, etc. - the economy has improved faster since the end of the current recession than in this time period after the last two recessions.
Times are tough, but times aren't over. Why aren't we cautiously using this recovery time to build new economic policy that will possibly stop the next recession?
Barack Obama is the most-successful first term President in our lifetimes. A fanatical extreme right wing in our country and a complicit corporate media combine to put out an opposing message. No problem, we need opposing ideas, but unreasonable ideas are presented as reasonable, and enough people believe them to have them cycle around in our culture as legitimate. As much as Rahm Emmanuel wants the White House to avoid distractions from its legislation-led strategy, the distractions keep coming and coming.
He's an empty suit, he's inexperienced, his presidency is illegitimate, black, he's racist, he's not a citizen, he's a Muslim, he's taxing us to death, he's a socialist...Death Tax, Death Panel, Job Killer, Government Takeover, Deficits, Obamacare, Ground Zero Mosque...the list goes on and on.
When we see legitimate,thoughtful opposition or opposing views, they get lost in the vile sauce, too. I oppose many of President Obama's policies, but I don't try to demonize him or de-legitimateize him or his presidency. It's time you, and the media from FOX to NPR, stop trying.