Feeling the pinch of a losing campaign, finally learning that the public realizes the Vietnam war is OVER and grasping for that last attempt at taking the political position heï¿½s gamed for since he was a child, John Kerry has decided to just recycle the old Clinton campaign. In fact, heï¿½s out hiring up old Clinton advisors to help. So brace yourself for the good olï¿½ James Carville lines of 1992.
But thereï¿½s just a few problems with the Kerry campaign insincerely trotting out this garbage. To believe that the economy is in horrible shape and that itï¿½s because of George W. Bush is to ignore the obvious facts.
The top 3 items youï¿½ll be hearing the Kerry campaign focus on are: Jobs, Healthcare and the Economy as a whole.
Letï¿½s look at JOBS.
The National Bureau of Economic Research’s business cycle dating committee, which determines the widely accepted start and end dates to U.S. recessions (and serves as the official timekeeper for the nation’s recessions) is considering moving the starting date for the most recent economic decline back to November or December of 2000. source
From the recession that was inherited from the Clinton administration, we saw jobs losses of 610,000 from January, 2001 through August, 2001. source
Then September 11th happened. In just the remainder of that year, the last 4 months, we saw additional losses of another 1,172,000 jobs.
Of course, also happening during this time was the exposing and prosecution of massive corporate scandals and fraud that had been perpetrated on Americans for yearsï¿½. Yes, even during those glory days called ï¿½the greatest economic expansionï¿½. Corporate crooks were finally getting their due. No longer would government turn a blind eye to the white collar criminals. Of course, when your company is built on fraud, youï¿½re likely to lose your job when law enforcement comes calling. Itï¿½s a fact of life, not a failed economic policy of the President.
So, given that George W. Bush inherited a recession that either began in Clintonï¿½s final months or carried over into first few months of his, combined with the worst terror attacks in our nationï¿½s history and the overdue prosecution of massive corporate accounting fraud, there was a total net job loss in 2001 of 1,782,000 jobs.
If you want to blame Bush for what his policies have done for jobs, letï¿½s look at the job numbers SINCE his policies went into effect. In just one year, there have been 1,686,000 jobs created. And remember, this is in the aftermath of significant events that impacted our economy greatly.
In fact, at this point in Clintonï¿½s run for his second term, unemployment was at 5.6%. Today, that figure stands at 5.4%. Okay, John, letï¿½s talk jobs.
How about HEALTHCAREï¿½.
From John Edwardsï¿½ book, ï¿½Four Trialsï¿½, he said, ï¿½In the E.G. Sawyer case and the Jennifer Campbell case, the defendants were not malevolent but were caring and competent doctors who worked in good hospitals…” And yet he sued them and won millions. Who do you think ends up paying the price for that?
Dr. VanDerVeer, a Charlotte neurosurgeon, recalled one night on duty when two patients arrived in an emergency room in Myrtle Beach, S.C., where the area’s last neurosurgeons quit earlier that year. “No one in Myrtle Beach would accept responsibility for these patients,” he said. And because it was raining, the helicopters were grounded, so the patients were loaded into ambulances and driven the four hours to Charlotte. Upon arrival, one patient had died, and the other learned that she merely had a minor concussion ï¿½ and a $6,000 bill for the ambulance ride. “That’s just one little slice of life here,” Dr. VanDerVeer said. “It’s a direct result of the medical-malpractice situation that John Edwards fomented.”
Dr. Schmitt had spent 20 years delivering babies in Raleigh. Though he had no claims against him, his insurance tripled in one year. With no assurances that his rates would ever drop, or just stop rising, he left town.
“We are currently being sued out of existence,” Dr. VanDerVeer said. “People have to choose whether they want these lawyers to make gazillions of dollars in pain and suffering awards or whether they want health care.”
It is not clear just how much Mr. Edwards made as a lawyer, but estimates based on a review of his lawsuit settlements and Senate records place his fortune at about $38 million. Now Iï¿½m not begrudging a man for being successful, but itï¿½s pretty disingenuous to then blame your political opponent for creating an environment that you and your colleagues have had a big hand in creating.
As a result of the many lawsuits, insurance rates for doctors have skyrocketed ï¿½ putting some out of business and driving others away, especially from rural areas. And doctors who have lost cases to Mr. Edwards have been bankrupted. Patients, meanwhile, are left with rising health care costs and fewer ï¿½ if any ï¿½ doctors in their area. It is increasingly a nationwide problem, physicians say.
But the Democrats still want to claim itï¿½s somehow all George W. Bushï¿½s fault. Nice.
So I guess that leaves the ECONOMY AS A WHOLEï¿½.
The economy is growing at a rate of 4.8%, as fast as anytime in the last 20 years. Productivity is growing at the fastest rate in 50 years. Aside from the job creation I pointed out above, and the unemployment rate dipping, thereï¿½s those pesky facts about home ownership (at all time highs), household wealth (at all time highs), consumer confidence (is up), inflation (near historical lows), mortgage rates (near historical lows) and more.
Keep going, John, I also think itï¿½s the economy, stupid!