During the election, how many times did we hear President Obama brag that the economy was getting better (after only four years, no less)?
How much spin did the media put into economic reports to hide the numbers that show Obama’s ongoing economic disaster?
Well, the day after Christmas, the proof is in the figgy pudding. According to the Wall Street Journal, initial retail numbers for the key selling season are not good — “disappointing,” as the media like to put it.
MasterCard Inc. research reports that holiday sales from Oct. 28 to Christmas Eve grew 0.7 percent. While that’s still growth, it’s anemic at best. MasterCard Vice President of Research Michael McNamara called it a “lost season.”
On a more micro scale, in my own neck of the woods, several large businesses combined pre-Christmas sales with going out of business sales. I’m not sure how that translates elsewhere, but to see more companies closing doors in an affluent area near the heart of a major city can’t be taken as a good omen.
More telling of a mood shift in the country are the letters to Santa the post office collects each year. The Postal Service makes an annual effort to answer children’s letters and try to make as many Christmas wishes come true as humanly possible.
As ABC reported, the volunteers who handle the annual Christmas chore began noticing a change in the tone of some of the letters this year, as children weren’t just asking for toys.
One 9-year-old asked for a queen-size bed because she and her siblings were sleeping on the floor of a basement. Other children asked for shoes or a book bag for school. Some just ask for homes of their own.
Government claims to the contrary aside, the number of needy this year seems to have grown. Churches, temples, restaurants and shelters offering a free Christmas meal were packed in cities across the country.
The Consumer Sentiment Index from the University of Michigan reported a nearly 10-percent drop in December to 72.9, from the November reading of 82.7.
With no agreement between the president and Congress on the “fiscal cliff,” any enthusiasm for Obama’s re-election may be giving way to a more realistic understanding that taxes and consumer prices will be heading up very soon and hope for more jobs is nowhere in sight.