Every month, the economy improves, little by little. We have the lowest unemployment in four years, the stock market is at an all-time high, and the deficit has been cut by a large amount.
Now certainly if any of those things had gotten worse, you’d be sure to hear how it’s Obama’s fault. Hell, you actually hear it now from people who apparently never read anything about the economy.
The real fact is that the President can only do so much to help the economy. That’s true of every President. Somehow people think the President has some sort of magic control box on his desk and can switch the dial from “economy bad” to “economy good” whenever he feels like it. “If I had the power to make gas prices go down,” Obama said last summer, “what possible reason would I have not to do that?”
But the President certainly does have some power — Bush’s decision to cut taxes for the very wealthy hurt us economically and now that they’re gone, the economy has started to improve, for instance. But he didn’t do it alone; he had congress’ help. Obama’s problem is that he is facing a party that has said, many times, that its main goal is to prevent Obama from accomplishing anything. That’s why congress has passed no jobs bills, no matter how much we need them.
Obama fought them when they declared that the way to solve our economic problems was through “austerity” — which means basically cutting everything, throwing many people out of work, and somehow all these now poor people without jobs or income would help the economy by — well, they never exactly explained that part. We know it doesn’t work, because in every European country that tried it, their economy fell head-first into terrible depression and massive unemployment.
So the fact that the economy is improving despite the Republicans seemingly doing everything they can to prevent that should mean that Obama gets some credit, right?