Only God can perform miracles. Barack Obama never claimed to be God. In 2008 when he took office, America, and the world, were facing one of the worst economic disasters in history. Under the Bush administration unemployment virtually doubled, rising from 4.3% in January of 2001, to over 7.2%. It was still rising. The recession facing the country when Obama took office resulted in3.6 million people losing jobs in 2008. To suggest the President Obama was totally responsible for the state of the U.S. economy during the last four years is simply untrue. Given the “global economy spiraling into recession” when he took office, it was inevitable that the American economy would necessarily be effected by what was happening around the world. With countries like China manufacturing goods with no regard to environmental pollution, employee safety, or even the exploitation of child labor, it is no wonder that the United States has difficulty competing.
In early March of 2009, a The Wall Street Journal survey of 49 economists gave Obama an average grade of 59 out of 100, with 42% of the respondents surveyed giving the administration’s economic policies a grade below 60 percent. In comparison, only 30% of those same economists considered the response of governments around the world to the global recession to have been adequate. In April, a Gallup poll showed trust in Obama’s economic policy with 71% saying they had “a fair amount” or “a great deal” of confidence in Obama’s handling of the economy.
The financial crisis that occurred over the last four years, was experiencedacross the world. Countries experiencing the most severe economic crisis included Belgium, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Latvia, Russia, Spain, and Ukraine. . In his acceptance speech after the election of 2008, Barack Obama said:
‘…Tonight, more Americans are out of work and more are working harder for less. More of you have lost your homes and even more are watching your home values plummet. More of you have cars you can’t afford to drive, credit cards, bills you can’t afford to pay, and tuition that’s beyond your reach.”
He ended his speech that chilly night in Chicago by explaining:
“… not with so much work to be done; not with so many children to educate, and so many veterans to care for; not with an economy to fix, and cities to rebuild, and farms to save; not with so many families to protect and so many lives to mend.
That message from 2008 is still true in 2012. We cannot turn back. We do not walk alone. America has survived the worst global economic crisis since the Great Depression. We can’t afford to turn back, and we are still not walking alone.
Unemployment numbers for April have been reported at 8.1% down from 8.2% in March. Economists describe this as a “sluggish recovery.” But it is a RECOVERY. Critics have complained that the numbers are misleading, as they reflect an increase in jobs, but report a decline in the number of people looking for jobs. However it is undisputed that there has been a dramatic improvement in the rate of unemployment in the United States since the fall of 2009 when unemployment peaked at 10.0%.
Contrast the decline in the unemployment rate in the United States to the commensurate increase in unemployment globally. Just three days ago it was reported that the unemployment rate in the eurozone rose to 10.9 % which represents the highest level of unemployment since the euro was launched in 1999. The seasonally adjusted rate was up from 10.8 percent in February and 9.9 percent a year ago. While unemployment in the United States is falling, unemployment in Europe is increasing at an alarming rate. Spain had the highest rate in the eurozone, 24.1 percent — and an alarming 51.1 percent for people under 25.
The economy of the United States is heavily dependent on the global market. U.S. exports were worth 181.2 Billion USD in February of 2012. United States is the most significant nation in the world when it comes to international trade. For decades, it has led the world in imports while simultaneously remaining as one of the top three exporters of the world. Main exports are: machinery and equipment, industrial supplies, non-auto consumer goods, motor vehicles and parts, aircraft and parts, food, feed and beverages. Main export partners are: Canada, European Union, Mexico, China and Japan. On a global scale, America is still a leader in economic markets. To consider the performance of the U.S. economy, and unemployment in particular, in isolation would be a mistake of global significance. We cannot afford to turn back to the George Bush ways of doubling unemployment. Barack Obama is responsible for leading our nation out of war in Iraq and Afghanistan. He is responsible for locating a killing Osama bin Laden, the world’s most sought after terrorist. He has established himself as a world economic leader as well. Surely America recognizes that we are not alone. We face threats of economic disaster along with the rest of the world. Likewise we face threats of terrorism with the rest of the world. Through the leadership of Barack Obama we have established ourselves as a leader in fighting terrorism, and economic crisis. When we elected Barack Obama in 2008 we elected a world leader. When Barack Obama is re-elected in 2012 we will assure the world of four more years of leadership from America.