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  • Kerry's "Misery Index"...

    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2004/04/12/...ain611381.shtml

    Kerry: U.S. ‘Misery Index’ Rising

    April 11, 2004

    (AP) John Kerry broadened his economic assault on President Bush by releasing a “misery index” that suggests a combination of soaring college and health care costs and stagnant incomes have battered working families during Bush's three years in office.

    Much of the Democrats' criticism of Bush is focused on job losses during his tenure, but Kerry's study argues that far broader and more ominous economic trends are at work.

    “Less noted, but perhaps even more important, is the fact that middle-class families are increasingly being squeezed by the rising cost of health care, college tuition and gasoline at the same time that wages and incomes are stagnating and personal bankruptcies are at record levels,” the study said.

    The Associated Press obtained a copy of the study Sunday. Kerry's presidential campaign planned a formal release Monday at coordinated events in more than a dozen electorally competitive states. The document discusses the economic status of all 50 states.

    Between 2000 and 2003, the study says, inflation-adjusted figures show wages dropped 0.2 percent while tuition and public colleges and universities increased by 13 percent, the largest on record. At the same time, health insurance premiums grew by 11 percent and gasoline prices were up by 15 percent, according to the study.

    Kerry's campaign argues that those increased burdens far outstripped any financial gain from a series of Bush-sponsored tax cuts, which his administration contends put more money in the pockets of working families.

    “This is an index about how the real economy is affecting real working families,” said Gene B. Sperling, a top economic adviser to former President Clinton. Sperling is Kerry's chief economic adviser.

    Bush campaign spokesman Steve Schmidt dismissed the index as a political stunt.

    “John Kerry has made a calculation that if he talks down the economy, it will benefit him politically,” he said.

    Schmidt also said the economy is growing “at its fastest rate in 20 years” and pointed to the recent Labor Department report that some 308,000 new jobs were created last month. Nearly 2 million jobs have been lost during Bush's tenure.

    Campaign officials said they prepared the study with economic data from the Census Bureau; the College Board; the federal agency that runs the Medicaid and Medicare health programs; and other government agencies, independent sources and advocacy groups.

    The report examined median family incomes, college tuition, health insurance costs, gasoline prices, personal bankruptcies, homeownership rates and private sector job growth. It says six of the seven statistics worsened during Bush's term; only home ownership rates improved.

    With gasoline prices at near-record levels, each of the White House rivals seeks to blame the other. Bush's campaign has laid out a series of Kerry actions as senator from Massachusetts that could have led to increase gas prices. Kerry's study says drivers paid an additional $24 billion for gasoline this year, averaging out to $300 per family.

    The campaign calculated the “Middle Class Misery Index” of Bush's and previous administrations and found a 13-point dip between 2000 and 2003, the biggest drop since President Carter's term. The report found a deterioration of five points during President Reagan's two terms, and a decline of 12 points during Bush's father's presidency.

    The index stood at 113 in 2000, but had dipped to 99 by 2003. A higher score means families are better off.

    Sperling said officials chose a range of economic statistics that would give an accurate picture of the economy and its effect on working families. He rejected suggestions that figures were chosen to make the economy look worse than it is.

    Kerry marked the Easter Sunday holiday by going to church, where he accepted Holy Communion. Some Roman Catholic leaders have criticized Kerry's support for abortion rights and stem cell research, both of which are at odds with church teachings, and have suggested he be denied church sacraments as a result.
    “I’ve always stated, ‘I’m a Missouri Tiger,’” Anderson said March 13 after Arkansas fired John Pelphrey, adding, “I’m excited about what’s taking place here.”

    Asked then if he would talk to his players about the situation, he said, “They know me, and that’s where the trust comes in.

  • #2
    It's funny how he had to change how the index has been historically calculated to get the numbers to say what he wanted them to.
    Asked what he would do differently in Iraq, Kerry said, "Right now, what I would do differently is, I mean, look, I'm not the president, and I didn't create this mess so I don't want to acknowledge a mistake that I haven't made."

    Comment


    • #3
      The faint odor of desperation....

      Comment


      • #4
        Between 2000 and 2003, the study says, inflation-adjusted figures show wages dropped 0.2 percent while tuition and public colleges and universities increased by 13 percent, the largest on record. At the same time, health insurance premiums grew by 11 percent and gasoline prices were up by 15 percent, according to the study.
        Well....Bush had just better knock that crap off right now. That's ALL I've got to say.

        Yep. That's all.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by BurnKU@Apr 13 2004, 07:00 AM
          It's funny how he had to change how the index has been historically calculated to get the numbers to say what he wanted them to.
          How has it been historically calculated?
          “I’ve always stated, ‘I’m a Missouri Tiger,’” Anderson said March 13 after Arkansas fired John Pelphrey, adding, “I’m excited about what’s taking place here.”

          Asked then if he would talk to his players about the situation, he said, “They know me, and that’s where the trust comes in.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Reggie Cleveland@Apr 13 2004, 07:16 AM
            The faint odor of desperation....
            If anyone should be desperate, it ought to be Bush.

            What has he done while in office?

            The economy? BUZZ!

            Foriegn policy? BUZZ!

            Jobs? BUZZ!

            Deficit? BUZZ!

            The war on terror? Well, he did have our troops go over to Afghanistan and take out some Taliban camps and we stopped a few of them from continuing to live. That was the good part.

            The bad part is the invasion of Iraq, and the question of whether or not they took the Al Qaeda threat seriously enough before 911 happened.

            What else good has he done?
            “I’ve always stated, ‘I’m a Missouri Tiger,’” Anderson said March 13 after Arkansas fired John Pelphrey, adding, “I’m excited about what’s taking place here.”

            Asked then if he would talk to his players about the situation, he said, “They know me, and that’s where the trust comes in.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Razzy+Apr 13 2004, 07:25 AM-->
              QUOTE (Razzy @ Apr 13 2004, 07:25 AM)

            • #8
              Originally posted by Reggie Cleveland@Apr 13 2004, 07:19 AM
              Between 2000 and 2003, the study says, inflation-adjusted figures show wages dropped 0.2 percent while tuition and public colleges and universities increased by 13 percent, the largest on record. At the same time, health insurance premiums grew by 11 percent and gasoline prices were up by 15 percent, according to the study.
              Well....Bush had just better knock that crap off right now. That's ALL I've got to say.

              Yep. That's all.
              Seriously man!

              I'm glad I'm not the only one pissed off about $200 billion handouts to private industry (health and pharmaceutical leeches), among other things :angry:
              Damn these electric sex pants!

              26+31+34+42+44+46+64+67+82+06 = 10

              Bring back the death penalty for corporations!

              Comment


              • #9
                Originally posted by BurnKU+Apr 13 2004, 07:31 AM-->
                QUOTE (BurnKU @ Apr 13 2004, 07:31 AM)
                Originally posted by [email protected] 13 2004, 07:25 AM

              • #10
                Originally posted by Razzy+Apr 13 2004, 08:35 AM-->
                QUOTE (Razzy @ Apr 13 2004, 08:35 AM)
                Originally posted by [email protected] 13 2004, 07:31 AM
                Originally posted by [email protected] 13 2004, 07:25 AM

              • #11
                Originally posted by Razzy@Apr 13 2004, 07:35 AM
                I still think the numbers point out how the middle class is being squeezed by the rising costs of education, health insurance, and gas to go along with flat earnings.

                Do you disagree with the numbers themselves and the picture that it paints?

                The current unemployment rate isnt a true indicator of the many people that have given up looking for jobs or settled for part-time work since they couldnt land a full-time job. To me, using the current unemployment rate percentage wouldn't paint a true picture of the jobs situation.
                I think the middle class is always being squeezed.

                Yes and no about the picture it paints. Do I think the economy is as good as it can be? No. Is it as bad as some people make it out to be? No. A lot of presidents would have loved to have unemployment in the 5% range. Another thing Kerry didn't include was the growth rate of the economy, which has been good, and that has to come before jobs will. Every economist agrees that jobs are probably the most lagging indicator.

                I agree, the economy isn't great, but what should Bush do about it? I think the economy is cyclical, he's tried to stimulate growth with the tax cuts. There isn't much else a president can do. He didn't help the economy with the steel tariffs. I think it actually could have been a lot worse here given the dot com bubble bursting followed by 9/11.
                Asked what he would do differently in Iraq, Kerry said, "Right now, what I would do differently is, I mean, look, I'm not the president, and I didn't create this mess so I don't want to acknowledge a mistake that I haven't made."

                Comment


                • #12
                  What else good has he done?
                  If he's such a fuckwad, why isn't your tin man opening up a huge lead on him?

                  If Kerry can't make hay right now, he ain't gonna. And you guys all know it.

                  Comment


                  • #13
                    Kerry points to two factors--high gasoline prices and rising health care insurance costs--as the cause for the "middle class squeaze." Ironically, Kerry has a history of voting in favor of higher gasoline taxes and voting against tort reform. By his own logic, Kerry's policies would increase his so-called middle class squeaze.

                    Comment


                    • #14
                      Originally posted by Reggie Cleveland@Apr 13 2004, 07:59 AM
                      What else good has he done?
                      If he's such a fuckwad, why isn't your tin man opening up a huge lead on him?

                      If Kerry can't make hay right now, he ain't gonna. And you guys all know it.
                      Reggie,

                      I ask again, good what has Bush accomplished as president? Leave Kerry out of it for now.
                      “I’ve always stated, ‘I’m a Missouri Tiger,’” Anderson said March 13 after Arkansas fired John Pelphrey, adding, “I’m excited about what’s taking place here.”

                      Asked then if he would talk to his players about the situation, he said, “They know me, and that’s where the trust comes in.

                      Comment


                      • #15
                        Kicked a lot of towelhead ass.

                        Comment

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