Posted by: bkropf | April 20, 2008

Informal Poll: Response Requested


Tyler and I had a talk this morning about the US economy. I have found we have very different perspectives on the American public. Our differing opinions can only be settled in one way: A Poll.

Question: Taking the last eight years as a whole, has the US Economy been:

A) Extremely Good

B) Good

C) Bad

D) Extremely Bad

Please respond with A, B, C, or D and you can even feel free to say why you feel as such. Thanks for your time.



  1. A. The fact that we may be going into a recession now sort of implies that things have been good.

  2. It’s not fair. You didn’t give us your opinion, but here’s mine. Myself and 90% of the american voting public would say C. People tend to think only of the most recent past and not long term. Do to the recent stock market crash, the housing slump with the 400 billion dollar bank baleouts that you and your kids will pay for, the economic recession were in, the horid slumping doller and the rising costs of goods and services, you have to say C or C-. Barney, by the time you get back from your Mexico trip you better figure out how to clone yourself. Your going to need two CPA incomes to pay for your $8 gallon fuel, your $6 loaf of bread, your $7 esspresso and $900 for a doctor just to tell you that you have Gout.
    With all those negative facts said, only time will show how good Bush really was.
    Barney, if you believe A or B, the Gouts gone to your head. I guess there arn’t enough good old conservative Mennoites left out there to think A or B.

  3. I’m going to go with B. Good. I think you needed another option somewhere in between B. and C.

  4. Chuck, what you said maybe be true, but is not what we are talking about. We are talking about taking the entire last 8 years on the whole and trying to decide if we had good or bad. Not what is happening today. Luckily Dan’s advice is free and I will drop my CPA for the blueberry farming life. Maybe I’ll have to start a business with Tyler, we came up with a good financial model today.

  5. I said. “People tend to think only of the most recent past and not long term”. There immediate response will be C because they will only be thinking about the last year and what they are feeling now. Your Gout has definately crept closer to your head.

  6. I know, but I want YOUR response, not most poeople’s. You can’t speak for them, only yourself. What do YOU think? Other than that, yes think the GOUT has been trying to reclaim my body, but I am fighting it one carrot at a time. I already miss meat!

  7. B. With my extensive financial training and knowledge, I did what I always do to check the condition of the economy: looked at the Dow Jones Industrial Average. 8 years ago it looks to have been around 11,000. This last Friday it closed at 12,849. . . . yep, my inidicators say the last 8 years have been good. =^) I know, I should become an economist.

  8. The whole debate was not whether or not the economy has been better… and both sides on that issue have plenty of bullets. If you think it’s been rosy, you can point to some things, if you think it’s poor you can find other things.

    How do you define a strong economy? GDP growth? Stock Market? Wage gaps? Inflation? Job growth? Spending power? Salaries? Poverty?

    The debate was whether or not the 90% of the 300 million Americans will all agree that the economy is in “good” shape. I find it unbelievable that you could get 90% of people to agree on anything.

    This poll is also skewed and leading in my opinion, by not having a middle category between good and poor.

    If you had a poll that asked: Is Bush the Worst president in the history of the U.S. Or even perhaps: Is Bush the Anti Christ, you are going to get numbers much higher than 10% agreeing with those statements, simply because they loath Bush…. it doesn’t even matter what you are asking, simply because it’s Bush, some people just hate him that much.

    Don’t get me wrong, on a whole, I think the economy has done well over the 8 years for all the horrible things that have happened that were out of Bush’s control, but I don’t think that 90% of the general American public will feel the same way. At least 11% will be unable to look past the history of their last 3.50 cent fill up at the gas station.

    I grabbed an Economist magazine (best ever!) in Romania and we’ve had all sorts of awesome new things to talk about lately.

    We are nerds 😉

  9. What I find fascinating is that we agree on 95% of economic issues, and resort to polling symantics to find something to debate about.

    We need new topics to debate about. Maybe Heather will give us new ideas when she comes… or avoid us altogether out of fear haha.

  10. If the question is about what most Americans think, then the answer is that things are getting bad and headed for worse.

    Here’s a different issue for your debates: figure out what could be a reasonable form of discipline/punishment within the public school system that is both socially acceptable, but also powerful enough to have an affect on students’ behavior. Because what they’ve got now isn’t working. If they’re assigned detentions or saturday school, they won’t go, so then they’re suspended, which means they get to sleep in and play video games all day. Grades are not allowed to be determined by behavior, so even if these bad students did care about grades or graduating, they can’t have that taken away from them due to their behavior.

  11. On a comletely unrelated note, teaching is going great. =^)

  12. Now I guess with Tyler’s comment we know the poll is no longer impartial. So I will just quickly say that I believe the American public is smarter than he gives them credit for. For the most part you don’t have a bunch of idiots living in caves. People watch/listen/read the news in different degrees and pretty much from 2002 through 2007 all news agencies have been trumpeting how amazing the economy was doing (Also, some people do research this stuff to and don’t just listen to the news). Almost every financial indicator will agree so it isn’t so much of an opinion as a fact (though I am sure some people can find some sectors or isolated instances of poor performance). So even if you are someone who sits and plays video games all day and surfing the net, if you sign onto Yahoo you can’t avoid the fact for most of the past 8 years you would have seen really positive economic news.

    With that said, 90% probably is high if I was polling the entire nation because some people might just not know or fill out the survey wrong, but either way, I think the vast majority, if they really thought about the last 8 years on the whole, would agree the economy has done well.

    I am interested to see what other people have to say.

    Nathan, I am glad teaching is doing great. As far as discipline in the schools, I think you should just get a huge paddle and start spanking people any time they get an answer wrong! Just Kidding…but seriously think about it! I will have to think about it but I know you and I have already discussed this topic at length and I don’t really see any good answers but I’ll write my official response later.

  13. I am also eager to find a consequence that yields good results in schools. You’re exactly right….suspension lets kids have free time. It seems that not letting kids go out for sports kind of works….in school suspension…..they get bored and hate that.

  14. I weigh in on the side of a good economy. However I think the tide has turned and their will be a price to pay for the Fed’s easy money policies of the recent past.

  15. I’m gonna have to go with B. Maybe even a little higher if it wasn’t for the last year and a half. Hmm, what happened a year and a half ago? The Democrats gained control of congress. Coincidence?
    Also remember you can make 90% of all statistics say whatever you want,
    50% of the time.

  16. Furthermore, 67.3% of statistics are made up on the spot.

    And I’m right part of time, ALL the time! 😉

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