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Is Obama Telling Us the Truth About the Economy? Not If You Believe His Budget...

By Noel SheppardAssociate Editor, Newsbusters.org

Despite the incessant gloom and doom coming from the White House -- just like what we heard from the president-elect before he even moved there -- the economic assumptions presented in the administration's just-released 2010 budget proposal indicate conditions in America are actually far betterthan advertised.

Sadly, one wouldn't know this from the President's depressing message at the beginning of what he and his team hysterically titled "A New Era of Responsibility":

We start 2009 in the midst of a crisis unlike any we have seen in our lifetimes. Our economy is in a deep recession that threatens to be deeper and longer than any since the Great Depression. More than three and a half million jobs were lost over the past 13 months, more jobs than at any time since World War II. In addition, another 8.8 million Americans who want and need full-time work have had to settle for part-time jobs. Manufacturing employment has hit a 60-year low. Our capital markets are virtually frozen, making it difficult for businesses to grow and for families to borrow money to afford a home, car, or college education for their kids. Many families cannot pay their bills or their mortgage payments. Trillions of dollars of wealth have been wiped out, leaving many workers with little or nothing as they approach retirement. And millions of Americans are unsure about the future-if their job will be there tomorrow, if their children will be able to go to college, and if their grandchildren will be able to realize the full promise of America.

Sounds pretty horrible, doesn't it?

Well, cheer up because on page 138 of this 142 page document -- talk about burying the lede!!! -- you find the administration has based all of its revenue projections -- code for taxes, of course! -- on the Gross Domestic Product shrinking by only 1.2 percent this year, and growingby a whopping 3.2 percent next year.

Yes, 3.2 percent!

Call me cynical, but this suggests only two logical conclusions: either the economy is in far better shape than the administration is claiming, or they're painting such a rose-colored picture of the future so that they can overstate tax receipts and hide what the real deficit will be in years to come.

At the same time they project unemployment, which is currently 7.6 percent, will average 8.1 percent this year and 7.9 percent in 2010.

Sound like we're in a depression to you?

Consider that from 1929 to 1933 the GDP declined by almost half and unemployment jumped from 3.3 percent to 24.9 percent.

Nowthat'sa depression.

And, despite a tripling in government spending from 1929 to 1940, the unemployment rate was still almost 15 percent, and the GDP was still lower than before the Great Depression began.

Yet, in this budget proposal, Team Obama is claiming that a 32 percent increase in spending this year will make 2010 the strongest economic year in history when measured exclusively by the size of the GDP, and the best since 2004 when measured by year-over-year growth.

Call me cynical, but this suggests only two logical conclusions: either the economy is in far better shape than the administration is claiming, or they're painting such a rose-colored picture of the future so that they can overstate tax receipts and hide what the real deficit will be in years to come.

Whichever the answer, it certainly doesn't represent a new era of responsibility.

Noel Sheppard is associate editor of the Media Research Center's NewsBusters.org. He welcomes feedback at nsheppard@newsbusters.org.

Noel Sheppard is associate editor of the Media Research Center’s NewsBusters.org. He welcomes feedback at NewsBustersNoel@gmail.com.