Thank you! This is what I've been saying for months and I've been getting a lot of flack about it from people who just don't want to see or admit it that we already are in a recession. The Bush administration also does NOT want to admit to it. Big surprise!!!
Well, wake-up people... The recession is here!
Finally an AP economist has written an article on the recession.
Here is one of my articles written a few months ago and below it is the article written today by an AP writer:
Too Many American Leaders & media in denial of our economic plight
Where the heck are we going?
Where are these facts stated by government officials and many news media that the economic is healthy and not in recession? We hear about all the jobs being created. Exactly what jobs are being filled by U.S. citizens?
Unemployment in the U.S. is the highest in many years and the outlook remains gloomy.
Another question: How many homeowners are there in the U.S.?
Very few officials and news media are being truthful when reviewing the status of homeownership in the U.S. Some say that most (up to 94 percent) are "able" to pay their mortgages. So, a measly 6-percent of maybe 100 million Americans who own homes can NOT pay their mortgages? What's that total number... maybe only 6 MILLION? Guess it's not any of our officials or members of their families who are in that bracket?
By the way, those figures lie.
Also, just because more people are not in foreclosure or are "able" to pay their mortgages does NOT mean they can afford to do so.
Even if homeowners are paying their mortgages, for many it's merely using the "free and easy" credit still available to them, but it is a "walking time bomb" until they no longer can pay their mortgages. Some also use "reversible" mortgages, while some homeowners sell their homes prematurely and at less of a market value to sell more quickly.
In fact, many Americans even are using plastic to pay off their taxes to "Uncle Sam" because credit cards are a way of life for all of us.
By the way, even reliable statistics don't always tell the whole truth.
Foreclosures from last year have increased 25 to 30 percent, so I don't know where some of these unsubstantiated facts are coming from.
According to an article titled, "U.S. economy leaving record numbers in severe poverty" by Tony Pugh of McClatchy Newspapers, Sunday, February 25, 2007:
"The portion of poor Americans who are living in severe poverty has reached a 32-year high, millions of working Americans are falling closer to the poverty line, and the gulf between the nation's "haves" and "have-nots" continues to widen."
How can our president and congress provide citizens with more tax breaks and paybacks when we are TRILLIONS in debt?
One thing is very clear, the US economy cannot sustain itself and continue to deny American citizens the basic needs of daily living. Our nation has swiftly moved from a Representative Democratic Republic to a seemingly Fascist Monarchy in which only the chosen few get the wealth and perks.
In short, we are hurting our own people socially, politically and economically by denying them successful lives.
We must all stand up and demand accountability, starting with a big change in America's management and that our government provides all Americans with:
- Jobs at all skill levels for any American who wants to work
- Affordable public schools and higher education that provide quality programs for all children
- Make higher education more affordable for all American children
- Affordable and quality health care
- Enforce our immigration laws
- Fairer distribution of taxation
- Holdback on "rogue" cutthroat profiteering
- Decrease/stop outsourcing of American jobs
- Find fair alternative sources of tax revenue
Provide quality affordable health insurance
- Provide affordable Rx medication and insurance premiums
- Provide our veterans with the goods and services they need
- Develop more controls on the financial credit/cards industry and high runaway interest rates
- Provide more tax dollars for domestic needs and decrease the budget for overseas ventures.
Most of all, whatever happened to that great American virtue of getting "an honest day's pay for an honest day's work" ?
While it's true that the America we once knew has changed over the past several generations, there are values that still should be employed by all of us to make this nation great again. We can't do that if our leaders continue to be irresponsible. They can't be permitted to continue ravaging profits all over the globe, like unruly children grabbing for all the merchandise in a candy store.
I look at this once great nation with tearing eyes and sadly shake my head, remembering what it once was and how we all once worked together to keep it great.
In closing, too many Americans, officials and news media may be "closing their eyes" to the reality of most U.S. citizens, much as Bush & Co. has for the past 7 years, or, maybe they are the minority of those who have wealth --- but "the Truth is out there" should you really want to see it.
Currently, fewer Americans can afford to pay their daily living expenses and that's NOT going to change any time soon UNTIL the voters demand it.
Here's the AP article on the economy:
Many Believe US Is Already in Recession
By JEANNINE AVERSA
AP Economics Writer
WASHINGTON — Empty homes and for-sale signs clutter neighborhoods. You've lost your job or know someone who has. Your paycheck and nest egg are taking a hit. Could the country be in recession?
Sixty-one percent of the public believes the economy is now suffering through its first recession since 2001, according to an Associated Press-Ipsos poll.
The fallout from a depressed housing market and a credit crunch nearly caused the economy to stall in the final three months of last year. Some experts, like the majority of people questioned in the poll, say the economy actually may be shrinking now. The worry is that consumers and businesses will hunker down further and pull back spending, sending the economy into a tailspin.
"Absolutely, we're in a recession," said Hilda Sanchez, 44, of Waterford, Calif.
Squeezed by high energy and food bills, "we can't afford the things that we normally buy," she said. "We are cutting corners in our spending. For our groceries, we are buying a lot of generic and we are eating out less."
For many, the meltdown in the housing and mortgage markets has proved especially disturbing. Record numbers of people were forced from their homes, unable to afford the monthly loan payments. People watched their single biggest asset fall in value, a reason to tighten the belt.
"Obviously the housing market is creating deep concern. And one of the real problems could be that if people, as a result of their value of their homes going down, kind of pull in their horns," President Bush said in a television interview aired Sunday.
Credit has become harder to get, thwarting would-be home buyers, adding to the glut of unsold homes and aggravating the housing industry's woes.
"For-sale signs are everywhere. In my area, 35 to 40 homes are standing there and aren't even complete. There aren't any buyers," said Jim Sims, 60, of Greer, S.C.
Nanette Dahlin, 52, of St. Louis Park, Minn., called the situation "very scary." She said friends in Madison, Minn., put their home up for sale recently and reduced the asking price more than $100,000 in just a week. "They are in bad shape," Dahlin said.
For all of 2007, the economy grew by just 2.2 percent. That was the weakest performance since 2002, when the country was struggling to recover from the last recession. The housing collapse was the biggest culprit in 2007. Builders lowered spending on housing projects by 16.9 percent on an annualized basis, the most in 25 years.
The job market is faltering — a point driven home by a report showing that employers cut jobs in January for the first time in more than four years.
"The way things are, people are afraid of losing their jobs," Sanchez said.
Employment concerns are contributing to darker feelings about the economy and people's own financial well-being. Consumer confidence, as measured by the RBC Cash Index, dropped to a mark of 48.5 in early February. It was the worst reading since the index began in 2002.
A cooling job market along with high energy and food prices are taking a toll on paychecks. Workers' average weekly earnings, adjusted for inflation, fell 0.9 percent last year. In 2006, earnings grew by a solid 2.1 percent.
Wall Street is unsettled and as a result, people's nest eggs are not what they once were.
In fact, that was the top economic worry in the AP-Ipsos poll. Fifty-nine percent said they were worried "a lot" or "some" about seeing the value of stocks and retirement investments drop.
"I really dread opening my (financial) statements," Sims said.
By one rough rule of thumb, a recession occurs when there are two consecutive quarters — six straight months — when the economy shrinks. That did not happen in the last recession, though. The economy contracted in the first quarter of 2001, turned positive in the second quarter, shrank in the third quarter and turned up again in the final quarter of that year.
The National Bureau of Economic Research, the recognized arbiters for dating recessions, uses a more complicated formula. It takes into account such things as employment and income growth. By that measure, the last recession was in 2001, starting in March and ending in November.
Bush, citing some experts, said the U.S. was not in a recession, although he acknowledged "that the signs are troubling enough" to justify the $168 billion economic rescue plan that passed Congress this past week. The measure he intends to sign on Wednesday includes tax rebates for people and tax breaks for businesses.
To bolster the economy, the Federal Reserve embarked on a rate-cutting campaign in September, with two big reductions last month. In just eight days in January, the Fed slashed rates by 1.25 percentage points. The hope it that the lower rates will induce people to buy more and revive the economy.
So if the poll figure of 61 percent is right — that the country is now in recession — then those relief efforts will help ease the effect of a downturn.
"People are both depressed and anxious about the state of affairs. The anxiety is going to persist because we are in an uncertain season economically and politically," said Terry Connelly, dean of Golden Gate University's Ageno School of Business.