Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Economics Sweepstakes Quiz

"Guess which presidents since WWII did best on these eight generally accepted measures of good management of the nation's economy," That's the lede on a San Francisco Chronicle story by Arthur L. Blaustein, dated Oct. 19, 2008 and the results are fascinating.

The article asks us to choose which president excelled on a given economic measure. Match the president with the measure below.

The presidents are six Republicans: Eisenhower, Nixon, Ford, Reagan, G.H.W. Bush and G.W. Bush; and five Democrats: Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Carter and Clinton.

The questions are:

1. The highest growth in the gross domestic product?

2. The highest growth in jobs?

3. The biggest increase in personal disposable income after taxes?

4. The highest growth in industrial production?

5. The highest growth in hourly wages?

6. The lowest Misery Index (inflation plus unemployment)?

7. The lowest inflation?

8. The largest reduction in the deficit?


"The answers are: 1 Harry Truman; 2 Bill Clinton; 3 Lyndon Johnson; 4 John F. Kennedy; 5 Johnson; 6 Truman; 7 Truman; 8 Clinton.

In the Economic Sweepstakes, Democratic
presidents trounce Republicans eight times out of eight!"

During the 20th century, the Dow Jones Industrial average rose 7.3% per year on average under Republican presidents; 10.3% under Democrats. Investors gained a whopping 41% more under Democrats.

Democratic presidents have increased the national debt by an average of 3.7% per year. Republican presidents by 10.1%. During the same time period, the unemployment rate was on average 4.8% under Dems; and 6.3% under Reps.

Real middle class wage growth is double when a Democrat is president according to research by Professor Larry Bartels of Princeton University.

The Clinton-Gore administrations presided over the longest peacetime economic expansion in our history and left us the biggest budget surplus in history.

The Bush-Cheney administration has brought us the weakest job creation cycle since the Great Depression, record deficits, record household debt, a record bankruptcy rate, a substantial increase in poverty and the largest deficit in history.

The Bush administration, supported by a Republican Congress enacted a sweeping tax cut in 2001. The wealthiest 1% of Americans realized 43% of the gain.

In less than 18 months, the federal government's 10-year projected $1.6 trillion budget surplus just vanished.
This reversal is the direct result of Bush's tax cuts!

Let's keep this taped to our bathroom mirrors so we won't forget it when we enter the 2012 election season.

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