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Mole's Progressive Democrat

The Progressive Democrat Newsletter grew out of the frustration of the 2004 election. Originally intended for New York City progressives, its readership is now national. For anyone who wants to be alerted by email whenever this newsletter is updated (usually weekly), please send your email address and let me know what state you live in (so I can keep track of my readership).

Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States

I am a research biologist in NYC. Married with two kids living in Brooklyn.

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  • Saturday, April 12, 2008

    Progressive Democrat Issue 162

    Last week I discussed the economic mess we are in. Someone commented that I am making things up and that job growth has been fine under Bush. She claimed I gave no evidence that job growth has been nearly flat during the Bush administration. Well, let me quote Paul Krugman, with an illustration:

    1. The official recession may have been short, but the employment recession of 2001-2003 was anything but

    2. The administration’s habit of counting job gains since August 2003 is revealed for the cheap trick it is

    3. Even during the good years, job growth under Bush was slower than the average under Clinton

    Add: I may have been unclear: this is the total number of jobs added, in thousands, since January 1993 and January 2001 respectively. So the Clinton years ended with a net gain of about 23 million jobs, whereas the Bush years so far have seen a net gain of about 5 million. That’s not to say that either president deserves credit/blame for everything that happened on his watch; it’s just about the real facts of the case.

    This compares Bush only with Clinton, whose job creation record was unusually good. So here is a comparison of Presidents since Roosevelt from Daily Kos:


    Annual Job Growth ranked by President

    8.8% Dem Roosevelt (1939-war)
    3.5% Dem Johnson
    3.3% Dem Carter
    2.6% Dem Clinton
    2.6% Dem Roosevelt (wartime)
    2.4% Dem Truman
    2.3% Rep Reagan
    2.1% Rep Nixon
    2.1% Dem Kennedy
    0.8% Rep Ford
    0.5% Rep Bush II
    0.5% Rep Eisenhower
    0.4% Rep Bush I

    She also criticized me for saying America is in a recession while Bush and his "experts" say we are not. Well, let me just say that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) agrees with me.

    Let me also review some stuff I have written about before to further emphasize my point that Republicans, Bush and McCain included, are really, really bad for the economy. Let's start with the national debt. Which party is more fiscally responsible?

    On state levels also, you have a better shot of getting a balanced budget under moderate Democrats than under Republicans.

    But what about the accusation, made by Al Gore regarding Bush's then proposed tax cuts for the very wealthy? Was Al Gore right that Bush's economic policies will only help the very rich? Jerome a Paris over at Daily Kos presents a graph that proves Al Gore pretty much right. During the period of maximal Republican dominance, when trickle down economics were once again applied to the US economy, growth helped only the richest Americans.

    Here's the graph:

    Median wages (the wage that half of Americans earn more than, and half earn less than...in other words the MIDDLE wage, not the average wage) stagnated despite economic growth. Most Americans earned the same wage that they did before the period of growth.

    AL Gore predicted that only the top 10% would benefit from Bush's policies. Here is a quote from the NY Times that is in the same Daily Kos diary:

    While total reported income in the United States increased almost 9 percent in 2005, the most recent year for which such data is available, average incomes for those in the bottom 90 percent dipped slightly compared with the year before, dropping $172, or 0.6 percent.

    The gains went largely to the top 1 percent, whose incomes rose to an average of more than $1.1 million each, an increase of more than $139,000, or about 14 percent.

    The new data also shows that the top 300,000 Americans collectively enjoyed almost as much income as the bottom 150 million Americans. Per person, the top group received 440 times as much as the average person in the bottom half earned, nearly doubling the gap from 1980.

    Okay, so Al Gore was wrong. It didn't benefit primarily the top 10%...it benefitted primarily the top 1%.

    So let's review: Republicans give us MORE debt, fewer jobs and their policies help only the very richest Americans. Democrats give us less debt, more jobs and tehir policies help a broader range of Americans. So let's not hear the old myth about Republicans being better for the economy. The hard, cold facts show that they are miserable for the economy.

    Here is this week's newsletter:





    CALIFORNIA FOCUS: Progressive Candidates, Alternative Energy, Peace Rallies, Groups and Events

    NORTH CAROLINA FOCUS: Marshall Adame, Peace Vigils, Groups and Events

    NEW YORK STATE FOCUS: Impeachment, Peace Vigils, Groups and Events

    FLORIDA FOCUS: Peace Vigils, Groups and Events

    VIRGINIA FOCUS: Tom Perriello, Impeachment, Groups and Events

    NEW JERSEY FOCUS: Blue Jersey Radio, Impeachment, Peace Vigils, Groups and Events

    MICHIGAN FOCUS: Groups and Events

    ALASKA FOCUS: Diane Benson, Groups and Events

    WISCONSIN FOCUS: Groups and Events

    PENNSYLVANIA FOCUS: Progressive Candidates, Groups and Events

    ILLINOIS FOCUS: Peace Vigils, Alternative Energy, Groups and Events

    ARIZONA FOCUS: Progressive Candidates, Groups and Events

    TEXAS FOCUS: Alternative Energy, Groups and Events

    GEORGIA FOCUS: Veterans for Peace, Groups and Events

    IOWA FOCUS: Sustainable Agriculture, Alternative Energy, Groups and Events

    OREGON FOCUS: Neighborhood Leaders, Groups and Events


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