Bush: Jobs report shows "vibrant" economy

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President George W. Bush said on Friday the latest employment report showed a "vibrant and strong" economy.

Read the story here: http://www.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUSN0539521620071005?feedType=RS...

No votes yet

...in most places ... but not Ohio and Michigan...

Toledo

Here's another take on the labor market

What I find interesting about these stats is that types of jobs created is not discussed.

And the total of job losses versus creation is rarely discussed. What I mean to say is that if 10 million were lost and 8.1.million were created, this is a gain?

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

According to the stats, it looks like Bush has had a better economy than Clinton. Hard to imagine doing it with huricanes, corporate scandals, terrorism, war, energy costs, housing bubble, sub-prime mess, global warming wack-o's, daily barage of pissed off media folks, etc...

For those who haven't experience a vibrant economy, start investing in the marketplace or move out of Ohio.

Based on what?

Would New Orleans be considered to have a strong economy, locally at least?

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

Only GZ with his concern for the debt has even bothered to answer the question I asked.

Everyone else just tries to deflect the issue by giving individual - note INDIVIDUAL - examples. Even McCaskey's addition of 'consumer confidence' is based upon individual opinion.

Interestingly, current economic figures are better than they were during Clinton's term (and I'm not giving the presidents credit or blame for the economy...just comparing time frames) and everyone was saying how great the economy was then. If the figures from the 90s were so good, how can today's figures, which are better, be bad????

Is there no one (GZ excluded) who can give me their explanation of what these numbers would have to be in order to qualify for the economy being 'good'????

Clinton's term ended and all the facts and figures are in and Bush's term has not ended and all the facts and figures are not in.

How to compare a completed result with a non-completed result, except to speculate?

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

Given the state of global economics - imho - I would say we would be in a good position when job and wage growth outpaces the increase in the cost of living if the GDP shows growth at the same time.

If you're here to tell me it's my fault - you're right. I meant to do it. It was alot of fun. That's why I have this happy smile on my face.

And as I wrote Bush's time, time frame time in office, is not over.

Wasn't there a surplus in the government at the time of Clinton?

And what will there be at the end of Bush's term with the deficit spending a the tab for the war on terror and invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan.

We will, or at least I would venture a guess until some time has passed for the he said, she said and history is written with regards to Bush's pluses and minuses.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

I do not make this about Bush.

"I do not look at what the President, insert President of choice says or states or claims, when I look at my situation."

I could care less who is in office at the top as the President still has to deal with the people's representatives.

Ms. Thurber you are the one who said Clinton's years and I said that I can not compare Bush to Clinton years as the book on Bush's years has not been written.

How do I define a vibrant economy.

One with lower poverty levels, one with good paying jobs, one with less homeless people on the streets, one with neighbors who do not find themselves coming to neighbors asking for help, less spending on wars and use the monies to help invigorate the economy here by fixing the ills here first before the monies are spent to untangle something we may have created before, less focus on the quick buck by businesses like the mortgage lenders that have caused the latest mess, being able to put food on the table, being able to find a job locally and on and on it goes.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

"One with lower poverty levels, one with good paying jobs, one with less homeless people on the streets, one with neighbors who do not find themselves coming to neighbors asking for help, less spending on wars and use the monies to help invigorate the economy here by fixing the ills here first before the monies are spent to untangle something we may have created before, less focus on the quick buck by businesses like the mortgage lenders that have caused the latest mess, being able to put food on the table, being able to find a job locally and on and on it goes."

Can you give me a number for "lower poverty levels"? At what level does the poverty level need to be? (because zero seems to be impossible as even Jesus said, the poor you have with you always - and the definition of 'poverty' has changed over time.)

Good paying jobs - how many? does the 'good pay' need to correspond to skill? Do we not count new workers just entering the job market via entry-level jobs? Is consecutive job growth better than one month up and the next month down?

Homeless - not sure about this one...I'd love to have less homeless people, but some of them need to be ready to change their lives before they can get out of that situation.

Neighbors going to neighbors - is this happening all over the country or only in certain areas? Personally, I don't ever want to be in a place where a neighbor can't go to a neighbor for help...but that's not what you meant, I'm sure. If the entire country is going well, but one city has a bad economy where 'neighbors are going to neighbors for help', does that mean the national economy is bad?

Wars and corporations - defense spending today, as a percentage of GDP, is less than it was when Clinton took office (reference to president is for the time-frame only...), so what level of defense spending is appropriate? And this statement seems to indicate that government spending on defense has a negative impact on the national economy and others would argue that government spending on defense is ONLY to help a particular segment of the economy... Further, this implies that government spending is a judge of the economy - and government only spends what it first takes from us, leaving us with less to spend in the markets...

Being able to put food on the table...being able to find a job locally...
How much food - steaks or pasta? The local job market in the Ohio and Michigan area are not anywhere near as good as in other states. Does this mean that the national economy is suffering?

You've given a bunch of 'things' that are subjective, with no way to measure them.

So again, I ask, what do the numbers have to be for the economy to be classified as 'good'?

Ms. Thurber I cannot give you numbers and do not interpret this as will not, I said cannot.

Why?

I do not live by numbers.

I live in the world I see around me. And it seems that some are living life by numbers.

When I visit cities and other places I look around and not at the pretty travel brochures and such I seek out the places where people really live.

"but some of them need to be ready to change their lives before they can get out of that situation."

Yes, quite true and some are destined to stay there as that is what they choose and some are in need because of different reasons.

"defense spending today, as a percentage of GDP, is less than it was when Clinton took office..."

You are taking into consideration the appropriations made out side of the budget for the war in Iraq?

"How much food - steaks or pasta? " Two of my favorites, too bad I can afford the pasta and not the steaks. Three square meals along the lines of the recent 21$ challenge.

"If the entire country is going well, but one city has a bad economy where 'neighbors are going to neighbors for help', does that mean the national economy is bad?"

There are other cities and I am not going to spend the time or effort to list them, with the exception of Holyoke and Chicopee Mass. as I have friends there and also with friends on some reserves I will list Rose Bud and Pine Ridge.

"Good paying jobs - how many? does the 'good pay' need to correspond to skill? Do we not count new workers just entering the job market via entry-level jobs? Is consecutive job growth better than one month up and the next month down?"

Enough to keep people employed. Good pay has always been paid to a skill, hasn't it.

As the job market is based on cycles there will always be ups and downs and with the economy more globally based we are seeing the downside for now as the latest crunch comes to call. The problem seems to me that we either have too many people are too few jobs. And what of the people that stop being counted as they cannot get unemployment anymore and are still out of work.

"Can you give me a number for "lower poverty levels"? At what level does the poverty level need to be?"

Nope on the number. The level rose as the spread between classes has grown wider and will continue to spread until the correction comes.

Didn't the prophet Jesus also mention something about caring for ones neighbor and so forth.

Why then does it seem that so many that use his words are the same that profit and seek material wealth while at the same time they do little to help those in need?

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

STAMFORD, Conn. - This isn't how Simon and Jennifer Morris envisioned married life

for the administration concerning the latest economic numbers.

OK, let's give the administration a pat on the back for the latest ecomomic numbers.

There are many economists forecasting an upcoming recession triggered by the weak housing market. If it happens, this can't really be laid at the feet of the administration, other than the fact that whenever a economic downturn occurs, whoever is in office largely pays the price, fair or not.

The larger question for Maggie and other Republicans would be: if the latest numbers released actually portray an nation that is doing so well economically, why isn't this reflected in how well and how confidant Americans feel about themselves and their country and it's future outlook?

In Jan. of 2000 the consumer confidence index was its highest level in 33 years. Americans were both working and confidant then.

This is where it is now:
http://www.conference-board.org/economics/ConsumerConfidence.cfm

So, again, why aren't these rosy numbers released last week translating into optimism as the nation projects forward what they feel their short-term future will be?

What I think you mean to say, without coming right out and really saying it, is the media--the largely liberal media--under-report 'positive' news such as the latest economic report and instead push to the front the war, the credit and housing crunch, the national debt, corporate scandals, Larry Craig hanging out in men's rooms; or any and all news that makes places the administration (and by extension, Republicans and conservatives) in a largely negative light?

And, that's why opinion polls that reflect national pessimism about the direction of the country reflect such pessimism?

It's OK; feel free to vent, you're among friends (smiles)...

It was a nice thread for awhile.

Table 1. Mass layoff events and initial claimants for unemployment insurance, September 2003 to
August 2007, seasonally adjusted

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/mmls.t01.htm

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

This is an example of why things may not be what they seem with the Sept. economic report...

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21309318/

...my husband works in process controls - all over the country. For the past 3 years, he's had a hard time getting tradesmen scheduled because they're so much in demand. His normal time for having materials and people on site used to be 3 weeks and now, because of the demand, it's up to around 12 weeks.

September 2007 is the 49th consecutive month of job growth, setting a new record for the longest uninterrupted expansion of the U.S. labor market. Since August 2003, our economy has created more than 8.1 million jobs, and the unemployment rate remains low at 4.7 percent.

Real wages have grown 2.2 percent over the 12 months that ended in August. This is higher than the average growth rate during the 1990s.

The DJIA is above 14,000...interest rates are still low.

Real GDP grew at a 3.8 percent annual rate in the second quarter of 2007. The economy has now experienced nearly six years of uninterrupted growth, averaging 2.7 percent a year since the turnaround in 2001.

And these figures are from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

I realize that most people think the overall economy is reflective of what they, personally, experience...but if these numbers are reflective of a bad economy - what's does it take for the economy to qualify under your definition of "vibrant and strong"?

...'progressive' think tank's analysis of the job figures and I checked the people in this group...

first, I counted at least 5 former Clinton staffers, along with former staffers for Ted Kennedy, Dick Gephardt, 2004 Edwards campaign, Democrat Congressional Campaign Committee, etc... So I'm sure there's no bias whatsoever in their opinions. (BLS doesn't put any spin on their numbers...)

but that aside, nothing that they say in their analysis comes as a surprise. There were gains in jobs in professional & technical (37,100), healthcare (33,400), and restaurants (25,400) and losses in manufacturing (-18,000), construction and related industries (-14,000). Still an overall increase in job creation...

They attribute many of the job losses to the downturn in the home building areas (construction and related retail/finance/loan firms) which everyone was expecting

Further, they point out that expectation of job gains was lower than the actual numbers turned out to be.

So, we've got sustained job growth, record levels of unemployment and steady increases in the GDP.

How is this not a good economy (except for the anomalies of Ohio and Michigan)?

as they can't keep things artificially inflated forever. And it started a looonnnggg time before Bush ever took office. The Klinton years were artificial, too, primarily due to a boom in credit, as GZ constantly says (and he's correct).

----------------------

BRING THE TROOPS HOME-NOW!

_________________
"They keep talking about drafting a constitution for Iraq.Why don't we give them ours? It was written by a lot of really smart guys, and we're not using it any more".

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'I used to have compassion, but they taxed it and legislated it out of existence.'

...the presidents, just the time frames... the time frame isn't relevant to the question.

No deflection on my part.

I do not look at what the President, insert President of choice says or states or claims, when I look at my situation.

Unemployed. Cannot find work in chosen field.

Could change professions or try my hand at something new or different.

Too many people in this area, locally once again, looking for work makes the chances of getting the job I would like less as there are so many looking at the same job. Costco for instance had over 11,000 people apply for the jobs they offered.

So what the nationwide out look mean coming from one who has made millions and has to not worry about looking for income as his salary is paid by us as well as his benefits, to me it means nothing.

What can he do for me? No clue as he is but one person and there others who have agendas.

And how can any of them control what happens when every thing is so cyclical.

And in the mean time while he rings in the glad tidings about a vibrant economy some of those around me in the neighborhood still seek help from each other, while we enjoy the vibrant economy in Toledo.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

According to the stats, it looks like Bush has had a better economy than Clinton

Over the whole of the Clinton administration, the economy added 22.7 million jobs

I already answered your question. It would seem the easiest answer would for everyone to ask ourselves, "are we better off financially now? (do we have more money in our pockets?)"

...I'm not looking for a pat on the back for anyone or any administration or anyone in Congress either.

I just get frustrated by people who say 'things are bad' without being able to explain to others WHY they think things are bad. Sometimes, it helps to understand what others use as a measure in order to understand their perceptions.

And I'm also frustrated that no one here can even begin to give some objective criteria for determining a bad vs. good economy.

I agree that the president (regardless of who) gets (and takes) credit or blame for the state of the economy - and for many other things as well. lol

But consumer confidence is a subjective measurement of the economy and, I believe, influenced by the news, a personal situation, a perception of how well others are doing, etc... Look at this column...how many 'wow - great numbers' perspectives are here? These numbers, whether or not you agree about the state of the economy, are not 'bad' by any means. They may not be what you'd like them to be, but 36 consecutive months of job creation is something to be glad about - not all doom and gloom. And it's comments like these which contribute to the subjective nature of a person's perception.

As I said above in response to Chris....how can we ever have a shared 'perception' of a good vs. bad economy if we cannot agree on what factors indicate the line between the two descriptions? Which is why I keep asking so many here - what should the numbers be in order to make that determination?

Sadly, no one seems to be able to answer...or even make a suggestion so we can start the discussion...

...I was trying to avoid the politics and trying to keep this on the economics...

Isn't there a way for us (the generic 'us') to agree on a criteria without letting politics or political spin influence? And that, more than anything, was my concern. We all know that bad news leads and it really doesn't matter what it's about. However, if there were some objective criteria by which we judge certain things (like the economy), there would be just the data and the 'spin' would be so much easier to recognize...and I'm referring to 'spin' on both sides of the political aisle.

As for the latest economic numbers, it wasn't the news coverage of the event which led to my questions, but the comments on this board which said the numbers are bad.

And it isn't just the liberal media - a lot of people in the Toledo area think that the poor economic condition of our city is the economic condition that exists everywhere else in the country - and that's just not the case. Similarly, the large economic booms in some cities are not reflective of the nation as a whole...but the question, from a national perspective, is: are there more 'boom' areas than there are 'depressed' areas, resulting in an overall good national economy?

I referenced this earlier, but I couldn't find the exact poll. But there was a poll that asked people how they were doing. The majority said 'good.' However, when the same people were asked how they thought their neighbors were doing, the majority said, 'not so good.' I think that concern for how others are doing is a reflection of the emphasis on the bad news that always seems to dominate the media regardless of who is president or which party is in charge...

so...that leaves us where? with no way to measure the condition of our economy (or other things for that matter) without subjective emotion and opinion? I don't know...

(aside...the issue over the mortgages is very interesting to me. 50 million homes have mortgages and about 250,000 are in trouble due to the sub-prime and other issues. But all we hear about is how this is a crisis... One-half of one percent is in trouble - did anyone know it was that small a portion? That means that 99.5% of mortgages are still okay. Now, this is not to minimize the individual impact of any of the 250,000 families facing the problem...but how much of the 'crisis' was a result of hoopla and resulting fear/concern the hoopla generated??? I certainly don't know - but it makes me wonder....)

I realize that most people think the overall economy is reflective of what they, personally, experience...but if these numbers are reflective of a bad economy - what's does it take for the economy to qualify under your definition of "vibrant and strong"?

That's a good question, and alot of times it's pretty simple to gauge. Look in your wallet. With median incomes down, most Americans have to wait to be "trickled down" upon to experience any of the gains.

Btw Maggie--the CAP report was based on BLS numbers.

DEBT. Short- and long-term liabilities in America are quite simply too large to ever say the current state of the economy is "good". It's poor at best.

That 2% or so you claim in increased wages was swallowed up by the increased price of food, alone.

What we've really been seeing across the nation in the past couple of years has been pent-up business demand, which was suppressed by corporate cost cutting. Eventually, trying to make your numbers each quarter by aggressive cuts just undermines your ability to function as a business. Eventually, you have to relent on your cuts and start buying and hiring, OR you just go out of business.

Still, this pent-up demand will only result in a burst of buying or hiring, and then the downward march of American business will continue on its course. American businesses really don't need us workers that much anymore. That's the harsh truth of the matter and once we start to acknowledge that (by accepting our much poorer condition), then things can get better for the long term. Home prices have to drop significantly more, for instance.

"Consumer borrowing jumps at fastest pace in 3 months"
http://www.toledoblade.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071005/BUSINESS0...

"Consumers have boosted their borrowing at the fastest pace in three months, turning increasingly to their credit cards to replace home equity loans as a source of ready cash."

Americans have been trying to live on the "third income" (home-equity loans) and that created a vast falsehood in the state of the economy. Too much was pushed off into the future. As a for-instance, the recent housing bubble effectively brought 15 years of home appreciation backward into the present. That means that 15 years of stagnation was pushed off into the future, and eventually that future MUST arrive.

...you make this about Bush.

Outside of the poor economies in Ohio and Michigan, what does it take for the national economy to be classified as good?

I clearly recognize that individual perspective and situations give one a unique opinion.

Are you saying the only criteria of a good national economy is your own situation?

How do you define a good national economy?

...just one of the stats...GDP growth, interest rates, DJIA, ...

Question: for the 22.7 million - how many consecutive months of job growth? I think one of the distinctions (albeit, a minor one) is that it isn't the number of jobs, but the fact that it's consecutive job growth...

But the question remains unanswered, Chris - what does it take for this economy to be considered good? What are your criteria - what is your line between a 'good' and a 'bad' economy?

an individual experience.

If the majority of Americans say their personal experience is good, while yours is bad - does that mean the economy is bad?

Or conversely, if the majority of Americans say their personal experience is bad while your is good - does that mean the economy is good?

This is just an easy way to indicate that everything is relative...which, in some ways, I'd agree.

But if the numbers look good for the nation as a whole - and you're not experiencing the same thing, that would seem like it's a problem on your part, not a reflection of the national economy.

So, what do the numbers have to be for the national economy to get a description of 'good'?

I answered your question on what I thought made for bad economic conditions but you cannot accept it and want numbers only.

There is no discussion when one cannot accept others ideas, is there?

Numbers mean nothing to people in real life, we live in real life not in the numbers on the screen.

Even countries that we claim are evil and so on can use numbers to show how good they are to their own people.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

I am not a number cruncher but what I have read is that while there has been 36 months of job creation there has been also job losses in that time which which were high paying jobs with good bene's, I know as I was downsized for economic reasons.

I also have read that some of the jobs are in lower skilled, lower wage jobs with little room for advance and little if any bene's.

So here we are with great numbers and lesser jobs in the terms of quality and a higher and higher level needed to get out of the poverty level and we dicker about what numbers mean.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

I'm having some trouble understanding what you want Chris and, I suppose, others to say here.

Your interpertation of the numbers released last week is these are damn fine numbers and should be trumpeted at such.

Okay, I don't have a problem with that.

What others, like Neighborhood for example, are saying is these numbers may or may not reflect what's accurately going on in terms of quality jobs added as opposed to, say, part-time work at Wal-Mart.

Like Neighborhood, I'm not a numbers cruncher or one who is educated or trained to anaylize what the numbers mean, but what what the hey, if there's a steady rise in real employment over a significant measure of time, fine, let's shout it give credit where it's due...the Democrats in Congress, LOL.

As the rate here in Ohio does not show the increase but we know it is coming.

U.S. Foreclosure Rate Continues Upward Trend with 14.4 Percent Increase in Q3

http://rismedia.com/wp/2006-11-07/us-foreclosure-rate-continues-upward-t...

To me the need to discuss or set numbers to discussion is futile at best.

Right the effects of the boom across the country with regards to housing is busting.

Does it effect us locally? Sure with rates, banks closing, NetBank is gone and there are others on the verge.

We all feel the ill effects of something in the country.

Just the goodness or badness of the economy by using the numbers the pres glad hands about is not reflective to the person and that is the problem.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

Fortunately the World is not Toledo-Centric, otherwise the Toledo Brain Drain would have significant repercussions on the U.S. economy.

...I realize their report was 'based' on the BLS numbers, but I've been around long enough to recognize the strategic use of words to impart an 'appearance' of things.

And I agree that the economy in Ohio and Michigan is certainly not reflective of the rest of the country, but that doesn't mean that this NATIONAL economy is not good.

Real wages have grown 2.2 percent over the 12 months that ended in August. This is higher than the average growth rate during the 1990s.

Further, a census bureau report states:

"This report presents data on income, poverty, and health insurance coverage in the United States based on information collected in the 2006 and earlier Annual Social and Economic Supplements (ASEC) to the Current
Population Survey (CPS) conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau.(1)

Real median household income increased between 2004 and 2005.(2)

Both the number of people in poverty and the poverty rate were not
statistically different between 2004 and 2005. The number of people with
health insurance coverage increased, while the percentage of people with
health insurance coverage decreased between 2004 and 2005. Both the number and the percentage of people without health insurance coverage
increased between 2004 and 2005. These results were not uniform across
demographic groups. For example, the poverty rate for non-Hispanic
Whites decreased, while the overall rate was statistically unchanged."(3)

For the 2006 American Community Survey, the census shows that US median income went from $47,693 in 2005 up to $48,451 in 2006. That's 1.6% increase so it seems reasonable that the BLS report of incomes being up 2.2% from 8-06 to 8-07 is a correct figure.

Again, outside of Ohio and Michigan, the nation's economy is strong. So other than our local economy, what does it take for you to define the nation's economy as 'vibrant' or 'strong'?

No Maggie, I'd say if most people agreed they are doing better financially and I wasn't---then I must be doing something wrong. However, if most people say they are worse off financially...then I think the economy is probably not doing so well.

I know you're trying to push hard to get an answer based on national economic figures, so that you can show how well we're doing. But why isn't the correct answer to just have everyone look in their pockets? How do Americans in general feel about the economy currently?

...accepting of your definition...but how does anyone quantify your description in terms of measuring the success in reaching the goal?

Let's take just one example:

You want less poverty as a criteria. That's fine and I have no disagreement with that particular criteria.

So, if a reduction in poverty is going to be an indicator of the economy, does a single person leaving poverty qualify for 'less'? Do you want a percentage reduction, a numerical reduction, what?

At what point does the current measurement of poverty indicate a turn between a 'bad' economy and a 'good' one, when using this particular component?

My intention, here, was to understand what makes a good economy and what makes a bad one. If the goal of the nation is to have a good economy, how can we ever achieve that goal is everyone has a different determination of what that means, especially if everyone's determination is subjective and not something that can be worked 'toward'?

Which is why I ask the questions and continue to challenge the subjective measurements...

not neighborhood, and I swore i replied under her last post....does this site continually do that, or is it my imagination? Put replies any place but where you meant for them to go?

...another approach. If you say that these economic numbers are not reflective of what is actually going on (and I'm not interested in debating the veracity of BLS or other such numbers) in terms of the quality of jobs, then we're getting somewhere.

What I understand you to say is that instead of measuring just 'jobs', we should measure the 'quality' of jobs and the distinction between full-time and part-time job creation.

That's fair and that's a criteria which can be measured and evaluated.

So, according to the latest stats (let's just presume the figures are correct for this...), the largest number of jobs added last month were in the professional/technical fields. Second largest number was in 'health care.' Perhaps you're suggesting, McCaskey, that the goal is to create certain 'types' of jobs rather than just jobs in general?

If so, that can be a good, measurable criteria for determining if the economy is good or bad or somewhere in between - or even 'moving in the right direction'...

btw - I'm not saying that these numbers are terrific - but everyone else was saying they were bad - and all I wanted to know was this: if these numbers are bad, what numbers would be good. Your input here has helped me and I thank you, McCaskey...

(also - and you know I say this with all due respect and affection - it was the Bush tax cuts that made these numbers so good - LOL!!)

I think I know but it is entertaining to see someone get to the point.

It is not about the president(s) it is not about a time frame.

Then what is it about?

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

Numbers make the world go round. Good numbers bring choices. Bad numbers bring sacrafice. According to your definition, we wouldn't keep score in any sporting event, we just feel who is the best team. Give me a BREAK! Maggie is just asking what people think should be be on the scoreboard.

...your point...but "feelings" are subjective and are based upon your own individual situation. And I've seen some interesting polls (which I cannot rely upon as a basis for any determination, other than just a snapshot at a particular time) which say that people are doing okay, but they're worried about their neighbor.

Polls about how people perceive the economy can be influenced by the news, their own situation and multiple other factors.

The best way, imho, to determine if the economy is good or bad would be to determine what criteria - objective criteria - indicates a good economy and then, if you're meeting or exceeding such, you've got a good economy - and if not, then you've got a bad economy...

The only good way to determine such a description is to first agree on the criteria...which is why I asked what the numbers had to be to 'qualify' as good...

What tax cuts?

I didn't get a tax cut.

If the tax cuts helped so much why then are large employers laying?

Where is the job creation as in new jobs created ones that did not exist before.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

There are raw numbers, which give at least part of the story, perhaps even most of the story, then there's an interpertation of the numbers and what they mean in terms of comparison to numbers of two years ago, or five years ago or ten years ago, or whatever.

I know what you're saying, these are actual black/white numbers that are not part of some poll sample or a measure of feelings or emotions.

And all I'm pointing out is these numbers have not projected, to this point, into optimism on what's around the corner economically or world-event wise. People are wary. They're cautious. They're unsure. Many are downright pessimistic. Yes, they're spending, but its largely on credit, as has been pointed out here on this site and elsewhere by others.

again - nc - it's about having agreed-upon objective criteria so that when the numbers (whatever they are) come out, anyone looking at them will come to the same conclusion about whether we're moving in the right direction or not.

...it was an inside joke between McCaskey and me...

"And all I'm pointing out is these numbers have not projected, to this point, into optimism on what's around the corner economically or world-event wise. People are wary. They're cautious. They're unsure. Many are downright pessimistic. Yes, they're spending, but its largely on credit, as has been pointed out here on this site and elsewhere by others."

And I don't disagree...

I guess 'if it bleeds, it leads' applies to news of the economy as well...even if everyone agreed that the stated economic numbers were 'good' would the media report them as such? or would we get stories of individuals who are having a hard time, thinking that such individuals are more representative of what's going on than the numbers might indicate? I don't know...just wondering...everyone puts their own spin on things...

I'm not talking about "feelings". I'm talking about cold hard data. How is your financial situation (rhetorically speaking)? If most Americans are worse off, then our ecomony may not be in a good situation or there must be a problem with our economic policies. Or both.

If we are going to wait around, trying to agree upon criteria to be used...well, I don't see that happening first of all. Secondly, it may be impractical to do so since there are so many factors involved. Isn't it more accurate to ask everyone how they're doing financially. After all, isn't that what all the economic figures are supposed to boil down to? I think it's funny when most Americans feel they are worse off, only to have politicians tell us "the ecomony is in good shape". Really? For whom?

I didn't disagree with the numbers per se, it is just that the numbers can be used to suit one's needs and position.

We all have positions don't we?

"...anyone looking at them will come to the same conclusion about whether we're moving in the right direction or not."

Right, sure, people will read the numbers and based on what they see or what their position is will either agree or disagree.

If you were not hung up on the mechanics you would see that there was discussion taking place.

Yes, there is boom and bust and currently we are in the bust cycle.

There is an on-line article about the boom and bust in the Phoenix area.

Housing went boom and people went and bought and then when the piper came for the payment the bust occurred. Reflective of the whole country, no.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

This is going the same direction as "dinner with the inlaws". Logic somehow gets replaced by subjective emotions / opinions.

How do you and Maggie equate measuring someone's economic position as "feelings", or "emotions"? It's simple math--do you have more zeroes behind the numbers in your bank account, or less?

Pretty simple isn't it.

Of course a persons economic well being will be emotional.

It is emotional for those that are struggling and it happy time for those that are lighting cigars with 100$ bills.

What I also find interesting are the commentaries and reports that state that once was considered well to-do, those earning 100K$ are now considered almost middle class as the costs of everything has gone up and it takes more income to stay even or above water.

And we have all these jobs that are being created but when one peaks under the numbers they will see that the types of jobs being created are in some cases lower end and not the traditional jobs of past.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

...Chris, if you are 'better off' or 'worse off' will always be subjective without something by which to gauge the better or worse.

If you're someone who lives on credit, you might not have zeroes behind the numbers in your bank account, but you could be very comfortable in your possessions. Or you could be like Guest Zero who strives to live within his means and find 'bargains' everywhere he looks. Or like me...I'm currently unemployed, but I planned for this time period so I think I'm "better off" than I was when I was doing politics on a 24-hour basis. My determination has nothing to do with my income.

How one determines their own status of 'better or worse' will vary from individual to individual. That's why it's subjective.

:)

This is what I meant, when I said we could argue all day about the "correct" criteria to use. The main point is, if we have Washington politicians telling us we have a "vibrant" economy, yet the majority of Americans feel the economy is not working for them---then there's a disconnect somewhere

...that the 'washington politicians' told us anything...the numbers are the numbers ... and I don't know that the 'majority' of americans think the economy's not working for them... polling, despite it's scientific method, is still just a snapshot of what some people think at a given time...and their 'feelings' about the economy are influenced by so many things - all subjective.

I don't disagree about the disconnect - which is why I asked the question. Is it even possible to bring reason and logic into the discussion or are we left with "no matter what the numbers are, they're irrelevant because of how people feel" ??? Would people feel differently about the national economy versus their own situation if there were any type of agreement about what we should measure and what those measurements should be to qualify for a 'good' economy?

I don't know - what do you think?

I think it's two separate subjects. I know economists generally use a couple of factors in measuring a country's economic success (growth, inflation, unemployment, etc). So you've got national numbers, but I think there's also the internal questions that persist. And this is where I think national policy comes into play. What do these numbers mean for Americans? Who benefits? My personal opinion is that the US economy will steadily grow as it always has. But there will always be the questions internally as to who benefits the most (or who should benefit the most) from this growth. And this is where we (all of us) will argue until the end of time.

Well sure they did and will continue.

Look at the great job this party of the other party is doing by showing one side of the coin.

Always the same figures presented.

There are other sources of information but that would leave room for doubt and dissent and the parties cannot have to succeed in the keeping their pay checks and bene's all the while telling us it ain't that bad.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

good point...

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