The State of the Nation: Reality Check with CBS Evening News

The State of the Nation: Reality Check with CBS Evening News
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Scott Pelly, a remarkable journalist and a veteran of the 60 minutes weekly information program aired on CBS, became since Monday, the anchor of the “CBS Evening News. Three TV reports summarize the extent of the economic crisis that is still affecting the US. The current figures are glimmering; 9.1% unemployment, 8.7% of homeowners facing foreclosure vs 1.1% in a regular market, 33% of Americans thinking that the situation will get worse, provide a clear explanation on why and how there is an increasing shift in the public opinion. The stacks are high for the next 2012 presidential election and the reelection of President Obama wont be straight forward as previously thought.

Crudely summarized by one the persons interviewed by CBS on home foreclosures, the root cause of the problem may be very simple: “Banks have been bailed out but we didn’t benefit from any of this bailout money”. In other words, most of the Banks covered their positions and reimbursed TARP money but they didn’t ease their pressure on distressed home owners or facilitate loans for individuals and small businesses.

If no major technological of financial revolution is in sight, how possibly can we restart the US economy without encouraging consumption which represents about 60% of the GDP? There is definitely something wrong in the current situation and the impatience is definitely growing among tax payers.

Economy’s impact on Obama’s reelection chances

The weak economy has voters worried, which is reflected in President Obama’s approval ratings. As Jan Crawford reports, if he wants to be reelected, the president is running out of time and out of options.

Long-term unemployed numbers continue to grow

More than six million Americans are long-term unemployed – out of work for 27 weeks or more – and the average length of unemployment continues to grow. Elaine Quijano reports on the exhausting struggle to find a job.

Loan modifications floundering

The Home Affordable Modification Program, or HAMP, put in place by the Obama Administration, was designed to provide modified home loans to prevent foreclosure. But, as Bill Whitaker reports, the program isn’t working.

Update 06/09/2011: Homeless students find hope in their principal
According to a new government report today, more than 900,000 schoolchildren in this country have no real home. That’s up 18 percent since the start of the recession.
CBS News national correspondent Byron Pitts reports there’s one school in Las Vegas, where nearly every child is homeless.


Update: 06/13/2011: For unemployed over 50, jobs especially scarce

Unemployment has hit baby-boomers especially hard. For those over 55, the jobless rate has doubled since the recession began, to 6.8 percent. In real terms, that’s more than 2 million people, many of whom once had good-paying, white-collar jobs.
PS: What is happening to the over 50 is also happening to the younger unemployed.

Update: 06/20/2011: Mayors say lost jobs won’t be back until 2020

The U.S. Conference of Mayors said Monday that there are 48 metropolitan areas that won’t see the jobs lost in this recession return until 2020.


The Decline: The Geography of a Recession by LaToya Egwuekwe

According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are more than 28 million people currently unemployed — that’s including those involuntarily working part-time and those who want a job, but have given up on trying to find one. In the face of the worst economic upheaval since the Great Depression, millions of Americans are hurting. “The Decline: The Geography of a Recession,” as created by labor writer LaToya Egwuekwe, serves as a vivid representation of just how much. Watch the deteriorating transformation of the U.S. economy from January 2007 — approximately one year before the start of the recession — to the most recent unemployment data available today.



Photo Credit: . . . “antsy” . . .? By elycefeliz / FlickR