We are now entering the part of the presidential race in which things are going to start to get interesting. Nearly every day or at least once a week there's going to be major polling released about how the candidates are doing nationally and in the swing states. With each poll, there'll be plenty of spinning.
If the results of any one poll are not favoring one candidate, there will be a complementary question that will overshadow the point that the pollster would like to cover up. One of the questions of late is likability. How well do you like the candidate? Do you want to have a beer with this candidate? Here in Wisconsin, beer seems to be a pretty important subject. But I like to think that presidential politics when it comes to voting should be taken a lot more seriously than what kind of beer you would have with either the president or the governor.
In the upcoming election are we going to reelect a president who has had the highest unemployment rate in over 70 years during his presidency? Are we going to reelect a president whose policies are leading to another recession? America is not psychologically gotten past the last recession. We can barely muster 1 1/2% growth in GDP while breaking that we have had 12 straight quarters of positive economic growth. The administration is touting twenty four months of continued positive job growth while over 40 months have been with over 8% unemployment. More American citizens have been on food stamps than ever before. The poverty rate is higher now than when President Johnson began the war on poverty in the mid-60s. It looks like three Obama ended that war too. We lost.
Americans are increasingly skeptical about the future of entitlements such as Social Security. The baby boomer generation is paid into the Social Security fund all our lives. And if you want to be fair about equality of outcome, we want to be able to take over fair share. Even though it means that we will be taking out a lot more than we have paid in. Even after paying in for 50 years. And it will be 50 years if you begin work at 14 or 16 and you have to work until the new retirement age of 67.
More and more Americans will be dependent on these government entitlements because we are no longer able to self-fund our retirements. Even those who have saved some money have seen 40% of the value erode in the past few years because of declines in the values of the stocks that they have invested in. The new national attitude against greed is aimed at keeping people from making any money in the stock market. And it's not just limited to those on Wall Street. Anyone with a 401(k) is going to share in the decline of the value of the stocks of companies that made America great. We are now all going to have to depend on the government.
Even small investors who used to get 5% on savings accounts for money that they would save all their lives are now getting nothing. 10 or 15 years ago, people who invested and save money could count on a return that would eventually help build their savings. This was called the rule of 72. Now there is no rule of 72 because it would take hundreds of years for the rule of 72 to work. So much for self-reliance. No wonder liberals are telling us that there is no such thing as personal achievement. We’re all traveling down the same road poorhouse.
So what are we supposed to do this fall? Are we supposed to continue on the same road economically because we like the president and think we could have a beer with the president? Americans have lost 40% of their net worth yet this is okay because we think the president understands our problems. Well he should understand them, because his policies are continuing to keep them our problems. When everybody is broke, I don't expect anyone from the administration to come around and cheer us up. There just won't be enough beer to go around.