Even if you leave out the first quarter of 2009—when the recession that started in December 2007 was still ongoing--President Barack Obama has presided over the lowest average first-quarter GDP growth of any president who has served since 1947, which is the earliest year for which the Bureau of Economic Analysis has calculated quarterly GDP growth.The analysis is tough on Obama's leadership in tough economic times. When the 2009 first quarter is omitted, GDP is a measly 0.4%. If we go hard, and include the very first quarter of the Obama years, the picture is worse, with a negative average, -0.43%:
In the seven first quarters during Obama’s presidency, it has declined by an average of -0.43 percent. And if you leave out the first quarter of 2009 and look only at the first quarters of the six years since the recession ended, it has averaged only 0.4 percent.Read it and remember: Obama has lowest average first quarter (Jan-Mar) Gross Domestic Product of any President SINCE RECORDS HAVE BEEN KEPT.
Ask yourself, how can hope and change look so hopeless and unchanging?
Is it because merely "hoping" and merely talking about "change" has nothing to do with having the skill sets necessary to bring about change and to create conditions in which we each can do those things with our lives, our skills, our possessions, to convert hopes into realities? Is it that Obama was a flash in the pan, that there was potential and now we are witnessing the eight year demise of it?
No, Obama was never a "flash in the pan."
That epithet belongs to the cases in which a fleck of gold flashes in sunlight as a miner is engaged in a search for gold. After the era of gold rushes, "flash in the pan" came to represent folks that briefly offered potential but subsequently couldn't deliver substance. Redskins fans may remember Heath Shuler. Heath was one of our many "flashes in the pan."
But Obama brings not even a single glimmer of gold to the enormous undertaking of the Presidency. He never did. Obama answers the question, "what would have happened if ________________ were elected to the Presidency?" Simply fill that blank in with the name of any number of rabble rousers (that's an oldster's way of saying, "community organizer").
For example, in the early 20th Century, Eugene Debs was the heart and soul of the IWW (International Workers of the World) and of the Socialist Party. Debs ran for president the way I play the lottery, more often than is wise and with no chance of winning. In his best run ever, Debs gained a total of 5 percent of the popular vote and no electoral college votes. His last run, in 1920, was from a jail cell.
Like Obama, Debs really was a "community organizer." He organized labor communities, he advocated labor rights, he -- unlike Obama -- left an accessible record of writings preceding his efforts to gain the presidency. His written and spoken oratory is often compared to evangelists for his zeal. Unlike Obama, those who knew him also clarified that his fiery speaking belied a kindliness and compassion in his personal relations.
But what would America have looked like had Debs been elected President? I think history and the judgment of 55 million Americans is telling us just exactly what a country led by a community organizer resembles.
It resembles a Gross Domestic Product that cannot be called lackluster, only because it is worse than that.
It resembles nearly 100 million men and women permanently despairing of finding work, leaving the work force, and by doing so, allowing the community organizer in chief to tout an unemployment number artificially lowered by the exclusion of those who just aren't looking any more.
It resembles nearly 50 million Americans drawing SNAP benefits, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits, because their two and three part time jobs in the Obamacare wrecked employment field won't bring home the bacon. No literally, even bacon, which is still often selling at four or five dollars a package, even though the packages are now 12 ounces instead of a pound!
It resembles nothing like the Utopian benevolent society claimed to be the hope and the change we need. It resembles Baltimores. It resembles Fergusons. It resembles no place you want to be, and no place you'd want to raise your family, or risk your labor and investment.