The Edmond Sun


August 14, 2013

Obama touts recovery that doesn’t exist

WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Obama is well-practiced at taking credit for economic recovery and job creation. Whether actual progress or improvements exist or not, he claims time and time again that the country is in better shape because of his political initiatives. However, due to the administration’s flawed policies, closer analysis of the facts reveals that our economy and job market are lackluster at best. In fact, our country is currently suffering from the weakest economic recovery since World War II.

This slowed recovery is due in large part to the president’s unworkable, counterproductive policies. Rather than address the actual problem of our nation’s out-of-control spending, he continues to propose tax increases and the expansion of free-spending government programs like Obamacare.

When in doubt, Obama falls back on phony claims of job creation and attempts to ensure the American people that he wants to create an environment that fosters job growth. He claims success through a declining unemployment rate — one that may seem promising but is actually flawed in its measurement. In July, the civilian unemployment rate was reported as 7.4 percent. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate is the percentage of workers and job seekers without work. However, this measurement is deceiving because it doesn’t account for those who are underemployed, working part-time or have given up looking for work altogether. Instead, the Labor Force Participation Rate provides a better diagnosis of our economic state, as it measures the labor force as a percent of the population. Currently at 63.4 percent, the LFPR has hovered around its lowest level reported since May 1979 (63.3 percent) much of this year.

Not only are more people unemployed, they are staying unemployed longer. Since Obama entered the White House, the average time an individual remains unemployed has shot up from 19.8 weeks to 36.6 weeks. If individuals are still jobless at 27 weeks, they are considered to be long-term unemployed; this number has unfortunately grown from 2.7 million in January 2009 to 4.2 million last month.

Additionally, there’s the expense of the president’s health care law and the harmful effects that it continues to have on hardworking taxpayers and our economic recovery. When the president promoted his plan for affordable care, he promised a system that would be favorable for job creators, boost the job market and create at least four million new jobs. Instead, Obamacare has led to greater costs for employers and taxpayers. Until the recent White House announcement to delay the employer mandate for a year, businesses would have been required to accept the financial burden of providing expensive health plans to their employees. While businesses have been awarded an extra year to comply, this doesn’t eliminate uncertainty surrounding the law for businesses who want to expand and hire. It’s likely that, until the law is fully implemented or repealed, businesses will be forced to resort to hiring freezes and layoffs.

Despite the delay of the employer mandate, individuals still are required to purchase expensive insurance from a flawed, unworkable government system. This requirement comes in addition to the first set of tax increases that kicked in this year just to begin funding the system. Former National Democratic Committee Chairman and physician Howard Dean recently expressed his doubts in the Independent Payment Advisory Board and its ability to set coverage rates accurately. He noted in the Wall Street Journal, “Rate setting — the essential mechanism of the IPAB — has a 40-year track record of failure.” Without question, it is unwise and irresponsible for the administration to force taxpayers to fund a system whose core component doesn’t work and adds even more to our debt.

Despite the sad reality that our economy is broken and our national debt is well more than $17 trillion, President Obama continues to try and make a case to the American people that we’re on the road to recovery. History, and the facts, suggest otherwise.

U.S. REP. TOM COLE, R-Moore, represents Oklahoma’s 4th Congressional District.


Text Only
  • 'Too big to fail' equals 'too eager to borrow'

    Four years ago this month, President Barack Obama signed the Dodd-Frank Act into law, promising that the 848-page financial law would “put a stop to taxpayer bailouts once and for all,” he said. But recently, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren told a Detroit crowd that “the biggest banks are even bigger than they were when they got too big to fail in 2008.”
    Who’s right?

    July 30, 2014

  • Sheltons travel for better life for family

    Some time around 1865 a mixed-race African American couple, William and Mary Shelton, made their way from Mississippi to east Texas. Nothing is known for certain of their origins in he Magnolia state, or the circumstances under which they began their new lives in Texas.

    July 29, 2014

  • Film critic Turan produces book

    Kenneth Turan, who is the film critic for National Public Radio’s “Morning Edition,” has written a book “Not to be Missed, Fifty-Four Favorites from a Life Time of Film.” His list of movies span the gamut from the beginnings of filmmaking through the present day.
    There are some surprising omissions on his list. While he includes two films, “A Touch of Evil” and Chimes at Midnight” made by Orson Welles, and one, “The Third Man,” that Welles starred in but did not direct. He did not however, include “Citizen Kane,” that was the first movie Welles made, that is  often cited by both film critics and historians as a favorite film.

    July 28, 2014

  • Logan County’s disputed zone

    Watchers of “Star Trek” may recall the episode from the original series entitled, “Day of the Dove.” In this episode, Captain Kirk and his crew are forced by a series of circumstances into a confrontation with the Klingons. The conflict eventually resolves after Kirk realizes that the circumstances have been intentionally designed by an alien force which feeds off negative emotions, especially fear and anger. Kirk and his crew communicate this fact to the Klingons and the conflict subsides. No longer feeding upon confrontation, the alien force is weakened and successfully driven away.

    July 28, 2014

  • Russell leads in Sun poll

    Polling results of an unscientific poll at show that Steve Russell, GOP candidate for the 5th District congressional seat, is in the lead with 57 percent of the vote ahead of the Aug. 26 runoff election. Thirty readers participated in the online poll.

    July 28, 2014

  • Healthier and Wealthier? Not in Oklahoma

    Increased copays, decreased coverage, diminished health care access, reduced provider budgets and increased frustration are all the outcomes of the Legislature’s 2014 health care funding decisions. Unlike some years in the past when a languishing state economy forced legislators into making cuts, the undesirable outcomes this year could easily have been avoided.

    July 26, 2014

  • Medicaid reform a necessity

    Historically, education spending by the state of Oklahoma has been the largest budget item. This is no longer the case. In recent years, the state of Oklahoma spends more on Medicaid (operated by the Oklahoma Health Care Authority) than common education and higher education combined, according to the state’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report.

    July 25, 2014

  • Remembering lessons from 1974

    This week marks the 40th anniversary of an important milestone in America’s constitutional history. On July 24, 1974, the Supreme Court voted 8-0 to order the Nixon White House to turn over audiotapes that would prove the president and his close aides were guilty of criminal violations. This ruling established with crystal clarity that the executive branch could not hide behind the shield of executive privilege to protect itself from the consequences of illegal behavior. It was a triumph for the continued vitality of our constitutional form of government.

    July 25, 2014

  • RedBlueAmerica: Is parenting being criminalized in America?

    Debra Harrell was arrested recently after the McDonald’s employee let her daughter spend the day playing in a nearby park while she worked her shift. The South Carolina woman says her daughter had a cell phone in case of danger, and critics say that children once were given the independence to spend a few unsupervised hours in a park.
    Is it a crime to parent “free-range” kids? Does Harrell deserve her problems? Joel Mathis and Ben Boychuk, the RedBlueAmerica columnists, debate the issue.

    July 24, 2014

  • Technology that will stimulate journalism’s future is now here

    To say technology has changed the newspaper media industry is understating the obvious. While much discussion focuses on how we read the news, technology is changing the way we report the news. The image of a reporter showing up to a scene with a pen and a pad is iconic but lost to the vestiges of time.
    I am asked frequently about the future of newspapers and, in particular, what does a successful future look like. For journalists, to be successful is to command multiple technologies and share news with readers in new and exciting ways.

    July 23, 2014


The runoff race for the 5th District congressional seat is set for Aug. 26. If the voting were today, which candidate would you support?

Al McAffrey
Tom Guild
     View Results