Dispatch from Iraq: "All this time I thought we were winning," said a sergeant first class sarcastically. "Seems folks back home have already run up the white flag."
More on the FOX hunt here
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The New York Times Continues To Ignore America's Economic Progress
The New York Times Says "Fixed Costs, Like Housing, Health Care And Gasoline" Are "Rapidly Outpacing" Paychecks And Benefits. (Editorial, "Barely Staying Afloat," The New York Times, 5/10/06)
But Average Hourly Earnings Have Risen 3.8 Percent Over The Past 12 Months, Their Largest Increase In Nearly Five Years. Hourly compensation rose at a 5.7 percent rate in the first quarter. Personal income rose 0.5 percent in March.
Real After-Tax Income Has Risen By 13.8 Percent Since January 2001. Real after-tax income has risen by $2,398 (8.2 percent) per person since January 2001.
Securities Prices Show The Market Believes That Inflation Is Expected To Remain In Check.
More Than 5.2 Million Jobs Have Been Created Since August 2003, And 138,000 Jobs Were Created In April. The unemployment rate is 4.7 percent.
Yesterday, The Dow Jones Industrial Closed Within 83 Points Of An All-Time Record High. The Dow is up 8.6 percent this year and closed yesterday at a six-year high.
GDP Grew At A Strong 4.8 Percent Annual Rate In The First Quarter. This follows our economic growth of 3.5 percent in 2005 – the fastest rate of any major industrialized nation.
At $52 Trillion, Household Total Net Worth (Assets Minus Liabilities) Is At An All-Time High And Has Increased 8 Percent Over The Past Year And 33 Percent Over The Past Three Years. The growth is due to both real estate and other financial investments (i.e. it's not just a result of rising housing prices). Household financial net worth (which excludes housing and other tangible assets) is also at an all-time high.
The Conference Board Index Of Consumer Confidence Increased In April To Its Highest Level In Almost Four Years.
Productivity Increased At A Strong Annual Rate Of 3.2 % in the First Quarter.
Real Consumer Spending (Which Adjusts For The Price Of Gasoline) Grew At A 5.5% Annual Rate In The First Quarter And 3.4 Percent Over The Past Four Quarters.
The President's Tax Relief Has Helped Spur America's Economic Momentum
The President Worked With Congress To Reduce Income Taxes For Every American Who Pays Income Taxes. The Administration and Congress doubled the child tax credit, reduced the marriage penalty, cut taxes on capital gains and dividends, created incentives for small businesses to purchase new equipment and hire new workers, and put the death tax on the path to extinction. Altogether, this tax relief left $880 billion in the hands of American workers and businesses.
The Wall Street Journal: President Bush's Tax Relief Is Responsible For Economic Growth. "Critics continue to complain that President Bush's tax policies have only benefited the super-wealthy, but that would come as news to the five million Americans who were jobless before the 2003 tax cuts, and thus had no income, but now have a weekly paycheck." (Editorial, "Help [Very Much] Wanted," The Wall Street Journal, 4/10/06)
Yesterday, Congressional Leaders Agreed To A Tax Relief Extension Package That Will Help Millions Of Middle Class Families. "Republican congressional leaders agreed Tuesday on a $70 billion measure to extend tax breaks for investors and prevent 15 million middle-income families from being hit by the alternative minimum tax, which was intended to affect only the wealthy." (Jim Drinkard, "$70B Measure Would Extend Tax Breaks," USA Today, 5/10/06)
UPDATE: From Taranto today in WSJ;
[...] The breezy transition from a terrorist atrocity in Iraq to the president's approval rating is awfully crass, but it's also revealing. For many in the media and the Democratic Party, the Iraq war is merely a proxy for domestic politics. That is, "antiwar" passions are largely the result of anti-Republican, or anti-Bush, passions. Anger over Iraq today is barely distinguishable from anger over impeachment seven years ago or over Florida five years ago.