Dan Kennedy

The president, Tiny Tim Geithner and much of the complicit media like using phrases like “we have turned the corner,” talking about some sort of economic recovery underway. Joe Biden went so far as to dub this “The Summer of Recovery.”

It’s tripe. The almost entirely unreported fact is that personal income, excluding government transfer payments, has been declining and continues to decline, something never before seen in a recovery out the back end of a recession. The need to extend the unemployment welfare again, this time to the not-coincidental election month of November (when you can count on it being extended again) should tell all that needs known about the mythical recovery. But in case you missed this, the FHA, the VA, even the Dept. of Agriculture plus Fannie and Freddie are making and backing no-down payment, 3 percent-down payment and low-down payment mortgage loans at furious pace, by their own spokespersons’ admission to keep the housing market from falling off a cliff. Last week, the administration and media gleefully reported a jump in new home sales from May to June, ignoring the fact of a year to year 17 percent slump.

The Summer of Recovery is imaginary.

There can be no recovery in consumer spending without real, private sector job recovery and creation. Beyond getting the already unemployed back to work, only real jobs creation can relieve the anxiety of those who are employed but fear being next for the cost-cutting axe.

And there can be no significant jobs recovery and creation while the president is taking his own big, bloody axe to one entire industry after another, threatening small business owners with massive income tax hikes, uncertain health care mandates and costs, possible certainly higher energy-related costs from cap ‘n trade (freight, on goods shipped, for example), postage hikes, etc., etc., etc. And every time he demonizes the teeny-tiny, evil, rich minority that are under-taxed, and are not “working people,” he causes more uncertainty among the very people who have the capital to create real jobs.

There are some businesses hiring, but many more frozen, and more still hurrying at all possible speed to reduce workforces wholesale, by any means. For example, an automated self-checkout technology of the kind that has gradually been replacing clerks in supermarkets, Wal-Marts and other large chains has been built and perfected for convenience stores and will soon be sweeping the nation, eliminating at least one job per shift per store.

Dan Kennedy

Dan Kennedy is a serial entrepreneur and contributor to the Business & Media Institute.