Bulls & Bears

Obama vs. GOP candidates: Who's right about the economy?

The president says the U.S. economy is strong and anyone who disagrees is peddling fiction



President Obama Accuses His Economic Critics of 'Peddling Fiction'

Suzy Welch: When I heard the president say this in the State of the Union, it literally took me breath away. I thought it was an Orwellian moment. It was sort of like the president standing up and saying the sky is green. Everybody that thinks that the sky is blue is peddling fiction. It's really a polite way of saying lying. It was a moment that you think that everybody is crazy, but it's actually saying that. We could sit here for the entire show and talk about statistics to prove that the economy is in trouble.

John Layfield: The S&P has gone to 800 when president Obama was inaugurated to about 1,800 now. There's been a huge dip. Most of that is the Fed and easy money. Giving him credit good or bad is like giving Fred Flintstone credit for the cartoon. This was not a State of the Union but state of denial. This was the weakest job report in history. Most recoveries and the average over six years is a 27 percent growth in GDP. Obama's is at 14 percent, and Suzy is right and you can pick the stats to know that we're in depression or the booming times. If you cherry pick the stats, the truth is in the middle. We had a weak economy and the Fed is out of bullets.

Gary B. Smith: When it comes back to going to the economic success, you can count on him coming up with 70 months of the job growth since George Washington. Of course even that is flawed because he cherry picks it. Obama has been in office more than 70 months if you compare over the ten year of the past presidents, he is way behind Reagan and Clinton on the job growth. Even if you like the numbers, to your point Gerri that labor force participation rate is the lowest that it's been in 40 years.

Chuck Rocha: I bought me some stocks today. I am so up about the economy, so I went and bought GM stock. I know that's a good thing when they said Bin Laden was dead and GM is alive. I don't think that we're at where we need to be, but we're better off where we were. We have a long way to go. I agree with the job growth and no job income, but the oil prices have brought a lot of us down. We have a lot further to go. The election is going to be a big result in where it is.

Jonas Max Ferris: I would like to say that anybody that is speaking and says that the American is in decline is peddling fiction. It does not mean the strategy to the point is why the economy is on the upside. The bottom line is that this myth that we're in decline lead to a lot of bad decisions by Wall Street and then by choice and we're going to have inflation and then the U.S. dollar is going to collapse. The emerging market is going beat us. The money placed on this decline has destroyed more than a billion dollars. Now, with that said where I think that he has been delusional is where we go from here. I don't think that he set us up well. We have a dangerous bubble collapsing and there's no dangerous action. There's no game plan to stop it.

New Controversy Over Nuclear Deal In Wake of Iran Detaining 10 US Sailors

Gary B. Smith: Iran was a very hard line country. They had food shortages and the exports were dropping and high inflation. They elected a moderate specifically for the reason to give them room to maneuver and come to the table. Instead we're giving them money and letting them off and then they put the finger in our face by making the soldiers look like POWs. This is no small country. We're feeding the beast.

Chuck Rocha: When you see the video and the soldiers on their knees, I have talked about it before. It makes me get my red neck up. There's a reason why we do diplomacy. Whether you're for the sanctions or against it, I think that Iran, from talking to my friends in the military, is when we put the money there, you have to remember at the end of the day no matter if you love this or hate this, Iran is fighting ISIS. Whether you like it or not, they're the people on the ground. I find that and American people have to know that they're on the ground and if we give them this money, we have to know that they have to be accountable for it.

Suzy Welch: Well, there are people that look at the soldiers on the ground with the hands behind their heads and say it's a new era and then there are others that feel sick to the stomach. I have studied the academic research on this and show that sanctions work when a country is embedded in the world economy. That's Iran. How can we give money to a country that has our soldiers on their knees?

Jonas Max Ferris: You know what, the Navy went into their waters and they gave them back within a day. No one was out raged when the Turkish government shot down a Russian plane in their air space for 10 seconds. So let's not say that this is the worst country in the world. The North Koreans are worse, Pakistan is maybe worst. This country needs to be part of the world.

John Layfield: You take an American soldier and have a gun to his head. That's fine? That's not fine with me. Can you imagine them doing that with Reagan or Bush? They would not have done this. This is crazy that they would do this to a U.S. soldier. Once you raise the sanctions, they're going to start to produce the nuclear bomb. North Korea did it right away. We're letting them off the hook. That video was not acceptable and despicable to do to a U.S. soldier.

U.S. National Debt Nearing $19 Trillion, Putting Focus on Entitlement Spending

John Layfield: The debt basically doubled under Bush and it's going double under President Obama. All of the Democrats and all of the Republicans' budgets, none of them talk about dealing with the entitlement or balancing the budget. All that they want to do is get re-elected. That's why the approval rating is in the sewer. That's why I or anyone that has a brain disapproves.

Suzy Welch: I agree with John. Entitlements have to be dealt with it is a huge looming problem. But I disagree that they don’t want to deal with it, I think if you asked any of the republicans they would take it on. But you know why they don't? Because people are talking about ISIS and they are talking about jobs, they are talking about gun control, and the burning issues that keep coming up again. For Millennials the national debt has been the background music for their entire lives.

Jonas Max Ferris: It was embarrassing how they dodged the ideas. They have plenty of time and debates. They're no better than Obama. There are a handful of things that can be done. We can have higher taxes and reduced benefits and restricting the views. These things have to come up. This debt will not go away without getting specifics and having ideas. Just shifting around it and dodge the questions is not the solution.

Chuck Rocha: Here is what the American electorate think. They're like me and have had a job since they were 16 years old and they're paying into this, and it’s their money. And if any one takes that on, I am going run a campaign that shows them pushing grandma off the cliff. You make the decisions.

Gary B. Smith: Well when they write the history it won’t be asteroids that did us in or climate change and Iran and Obama and it will be entitlements. Two facts, Social security trust fund is going bankrupt in 2034 and Medicare trust fund runs out in 2030. That's all that you need to know. We're going to be paying it on the back and the taxes are going to skyrocket, and that's going to mark the end.

Stock Picks

Gary B. Smith: (XOM) Exxon up 40 percent in a year

John Layfield: (GM) General Motors up 20 percent in a year

Jonas Max Ferris: (EDV) up 20 percent in a year