President Obama launches this week’s address to the nation with a fallacy that I assume, if repeated enough, will begin to be generally accepted, if it isn’t already. Here’s what he said.
After a decade of hardship for middle class families, and a recession that wiped away millions of jobs, we are in the middle of a tough fight to rebuild this economy and put folks back to work.
Really? A decade of hardship for middle class families? From 2001-2008, the annual unemployment rate was in the range of 4-5 percent, never topping 6 percent, despite the recession that President Bush inherited from President Clinton.
THAT’S BASICALLY FULL EMPLOYMENT.
Once the recession ended in 2001, the economy grew steadily until 2008.
No question the Bush years ended with a bang, from which Obama has been unable to lift us. There is, however, legitimate debate, rarely voiced in polite society – which accepts that Bush is the culprit – about who and what caused the recession and how widely blame is shared. Likewise, one can also debate how well the middle class did relative to other segments of the society during the Bush years.
BUT THERE IS NO CONCEIVABLE WAY TO ARGUE THAT THE MIDDLE CLASS ENDURED A DECADE OF HARDSHIP, unless having a job and a home is the new hardship.
Please get it right, Mr. President.