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Thursday, January 20, 2011

The See-Saw State of the Union

There is no more accurate image to convey the state of the American nation and the current recession than a see saw.  But rather than picture two individuals, one on each end, sitting and alternating up and down in turns, the currently economy is exactly like this photo..  one side dramatically Up.. the other side dramatically Down.

Example:  from MarketWatch: "Since Obama took office on Jan. 20, 2009, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is up about 48%, the S&P 500 Index is up 60% and the tech-focused Nasdaq Composite Index is up 90%...  Bank of America Corp. stock has doubled since Jan. 20, 2009, as has Goldman Sachs Group Inc. Wells Fargo & Co. is up even more, 138%, and J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. is up 150%. Citigroup lags these, (at) 83% gains..."

That's the Up part of the see-saw...  Now the Down part...

Official unemployment at 9.4%; unofficially near 18%; One of 6 black Americans, one of seven Hispanics and one of four teenagers- unemployed

Home prices (the piggy banks for most Americans) have fallen for 53 straight months; situation Worse than Great Depression era

Home starts (new homes being built) are down from 2 million in 2005 to half a million today, annualized.  A "normal, healthy" year would see 1 million starts.

2.9 million homes foreclosed upon in 2010.  If you take the 'average family' statistic of 2.5 per home, that would mean 7.25 Million Americans forced onto the street.

More than 7 million Americans have been unemployed more than 99 weeks (99ers) meaning they are not entitled to any more unemployment benefits..

And on and on and on...

If you're sitting in the 'Up' seat on the see-saw then life is good and government is doing exactly what its supposed to..

And if you're not in the 'Up' seat, its going to be a while before you are

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