This article was written by Brandon Smith and originally published at Birch Gold Group
This past month a poll held by ABC and the Washington Post with a 37 year history asked Americans if they were better or worse off in the two years since Biden entered the White House. If you were to ask Biden this question, you would be regaled with a flurry of great news about a fantastic economic recovery, epic jobs numbers, falling inflation and a dropping deficit. When you ask actual average citizens, you get a much different reply.
According to the ABC/Post poll, Americans say they are worse off than they have ever been, with the most negative data in the history of the survey. Over 40% of respondents indicated their financial situation was worse under Biden. Only 16% of people said they were better off. Not only that, but 60% of Democrats polled said they did NOT want Joe Biden as their candidate in 2024, and 62% of all people polled said they would be disappointed or even angry if Biden remained in the White House for a second term. This is astounding.
How does one reconcile this reality with the claims made by Joe Biden on the economy? If this is the “greatest economic recovery ever” then why are so many Americans in financial misery?
The number of lies surrounding Biden’s economic platform are too many to count, but I will try to go through the key arguments that the White House is promoting these days and outline why these claims are manipulative or outright fraudulent. Let’s get started…
Record Jobs Creation?
Biden and his team are quick to suggest that data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates an incredible jobs recovery which he is happy to take credit for. “You don’t have a recession when you have 500,000 jobs and the lowest unemployment rate in more than 50 years,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen told ABC’s “Good Morning America” program on Monday. “What I see is a path in which inflation is declining significantly and the economy is remaining strong,” Yellen added.
This is coming from the same woman who denied for years that inflation was real and a threat to our financial system. The same woman that reluctantly admitted to inflation only after it hit 40 year highs. So, keep in mind that Yellen’s track record indicates she is either an idiot or a liar.
Also, these kinds of statements are made while deliberately ignoring the context and details of the situation. Over 25 million+ jobs were lost on Biden’s watch as he aggressively pushed for national covid lockdowns. These lockdowns were useless in stopping the spread of the virus, but they were very effective at killing the economy.
Many conservative red states defied Biden, Fauci and the CDC and reopened after a few months when it became clear that covid was not a threat to the vast majority of people. Blue states languished in lockdowns and irrational fear for much longer. Only recently have most US states backed away from the covid hysteria and so jobs are returning. 25 million+ were lost, and 12 million have been recovered. Hardly anything to brag about, but when you look at it as if the lockdowns never happened, it might be impressive.
Beyond the return of jobs lost during the lockdowns, there is also the issue of around $8 trillion+ in stimulus in less than two years of pandemic response. The lockdowns could not have happened without covid checks and PPP loans, and the covid stimulus helped directly trigger the inflation avalanche that had been building for years. Part of this process happened under Trump’s watch, to be sure. However, it was Biden and the leftists that tried to keep the mandates and lockdowns going even when the data showed they were useless.
With $8 trillion in fiat pumped directly into the system, retail and service industries exploded in 2021 as people rushed to buy goods. Prices exploded, too, because supply could not meet demand. The problem is that the jobs created during this event are a temporary condition of inflation, not a natural result of a recovering economy. In other words, Biden’s jobs market is an illusion built on fiat. I predict we will see considerable job losses this year as savings accumulated from covid stimulus run out and as consumer credit runs dry.
Then, there is the issue of potentially fake or exaggerated BLS jobs data. Only last year the Philly Fed had to revise and refute White House labor gains and cut over 1 million jobs from their stats in the process. This is a massive discrepancy. Though it’s impossible to prove at this stage, I suspect that there is a concerted agenda to lie about employment numbers, either to make Biden look good, or to facilitate an excuse for the continuance of interest rate hikes into economic weakness.
If the BLS numbers are accurate, then why is there a record number of Americans worse off under Biden? One, the jobs being created are low wage. Two, the numbers are fake. Three, inflation is so high that wages cannot keep up with the increase in prices.
If we calculate inflation according to the standards set during the last stagflation crisis in the 1970s and early 1980’s, then the real inflation rate is closer to 15%. Official CPI according to the new way of calculation is 6.4%. Did inflation fall recently? Yes, but not because of Biden.
The Federal Reserve has raised interest rates to nearly 5%. Keep in mind that this is after keeping rates at near zero for around 14 years, and they are expected to continue to climb to a possible 6% or more this year. Higher rates mean far less lending and far less spending by consumers and the government. They also mean that corporate stock buybacks which originally relied on cheap overnight loans from the Fed are going to slowly die out, causing stock markets to fall. The most obvious consequence of this trend will be mass job losses as companies cut costs.
Falling Budget Deficit?
Again, this has nothing to do with Biden. He is trying to spend more and add more to the budget through his “Inflation Reduction Act”. Despite his many promises, he is not trying to reduce the budget. He will be FORCED to do this, however, by tightening fiscal policy.
Why is the deficit falling? Because the Fed is raising interest rates and this makes it more expensive for the government to borrow and spend. Higher interest rates raise the federal government’s borrowing costs and future interest payments on the national debt. As rates rise government programs must curb spending – meaning they are forced to reduce the budget deficit instead of spending money they don’t have.
US retail sales just witnessed a steep decline through the end of 2022 and the holiday season, indicating that the effects of covid stimulus are well and truly over. Manufacturing tumbled as 2022 closed, defying Biden’s assertions that he is bringing back domestic production. US imports of goods have also tumbled and shipping is down across the board, yet another sign that the economy is stalling.
Intermittent spikes in retail sales have occurred, as we saw in January, but so has credit card debt, suggesting that consumers are now leaning on credit in order to cover increased costs triggered by inflation. Retail sales are not increasing, just the prices and credit expenditures. In fact, polls show 33% of Americans say it will take them at least 2 years to pay off their credit card debts, and 50% of Americans say they need their credit cards just to cover normal essential living expenses. 45% of people said they had to take on more debt during the pandemic.
The Tech sector is starting mass layoffs right now and may be a canary in the coal mine for what is about to happen to the rest of the jobs market this year. And, inflation remains high enough that 56% of Americans say they cannot keep up with the cost of living, while 77% are worried about their future financial prospects.
This information does not jive with Biden’s story at all. There is no recovery, we are in the midst of a stagflation crisis with elements of a growing recession. I believe 2023 will be the year that the recovery narrative collapses, but the government under Biden will seek to hide the implosion for as long as possible.