To say that President Joe Biden has had a tumultuous first year in office would be an understatement. Rising gas prices, runaway inflation, a messy withdrawal from Afghanistan, a struggling Covid response, and much more have culminated in a measly approval rating of 39 percent in January, according to a recent Harvard study. This is down six points from November.
In reaction to his critics, the Biden administration has routinely boasted about the current economic recovery. Perhaps the most prominent part of White House propaganda, the Biden administration regularly releases infographics to social media comparing economic figures to those of past administrations, and credits the President with creating “the fastest economic growth since 1984.”
“The GDP numbers for my first year show that we are finally building an American economy for the 21st Century, with the fastest economic growth in nearly four decades, along with the greatest year of job growth in American history,” says Biden. “This is no accident. My economic strategy is creating good jobs for Americans, rebuilding our manufacturing, and strengthening our supply chains here at home to help make our companies more competitive.”
There is one problem: It quite literally was an accident. Though one would hardly characterize the coronavirus pandemic as lucky, its subsequent recovery has turned out to be a fantastic gift to the novice administration. Throughout Biden’s year-long victory lap, the President has failed to acknowledge the simple reality that millions of Americans were sidelined by their own government at the early onset of the coronavirus pandemic, and are trickling back into the workforce. According to a Pew study in September, 15 percent of Americans have reported losing a job or being laid off as a result of the pandemic. Despite the White House’s repeated claim that this was “the greatest year of job creation in American history,” current growth is not the result of ‘created jobs,’ but simply workers being allowed to return to their normal routines. And all available evidence shows that he just slowed them down.
In reality, President Biden has repeatedly failed to meet the job projections of the economic community, often by staggering margins. In April, for example, President Biden delivered 266,000 jobs, just over a fourth of the Dow Jones estimate of 1 million. Most recently, December produced again less than half of the Dow forecast, at 210,000 to 422,000. Dow is not at all an outlier in its forecasts, as a survey of economists by Bloomberg found an even higher average projection of 450,000 that month. And despite the government’s claim that December was proof of the “strong, steady job growth every month of the Biden-Harris Administration,” it yielded the lowest gains of any other month that year, with the natural effects of the post-pandemic recovery clearly waning.
The Biden administration treats the current economic boom as happening with all other things being equal; undeniable proof that his policies are simply more effective than those of previous administrations. And yet, as of December, we were still 2.9 million jobs short of where we stood in February 2020. This sort of dishonest framing is entirely deliberate, scarcely even acknowledging the harsh realities facing the American economy. It is a good cover for President Biden as he limps out of 2021 with the lowest economic approval rating of any new President since at least 1977, as found by a CNN poll in November.
Running damage control, President Biden recently claimed that the reason so many workers have left their jobs or are unemployed is because “Americans are moving up to better jobs, with better pay, with better benefits,” which he says is reflected in the latest jobs reports. Now, this might be true if you track real wages from November to December, which grew by a whopping… 0.1 percent. And yet, across 2021, real wages have actually decreased by 2.4 percent, according to a report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. What nominal wage growths we have seen have been utterly eclipsed by runaway inflation and rising prices, with the Bureau of Economic Analysis reporting a 5.8 percent increase in the PCE price index between December 2020 and 2021. This marks the greatest price hike since 1981.
As President Biden’s image continues to deteriorate, with worsening prospects for both midterms and his own re-election, he attempts to defend himself by tactfully manipulating economic statistics and churning out enough misleading infographics to build a paper mache raft that literally keeps him afloat. But, as job growth continues to wane, prices and inflation soar. The supply chain remains in disarray and his illusion of economic genius continues to grow more transparent as the struggles of everyday Americans become more obvious.
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.