Now, Obama has said the same thing here with Stephanopoulos yesterday, without using the word "poor." But let's look at some recent economic data. Last Friday, new economic data was released on unemployment. It jumped, as you know, all the way up to 7.2%. At the same time, retailers reported the worst Christmas sales figures in four decades. Also on Friday at yet another press conference, the president-elect told reporters he would do what it takes to kick-start the economy. He said that ideology will not matter. He said that pride of authorship won't matter. Another way of saying, as Reagan did, "I don't care who gets the credit, as long as we do the right thing." However, I don't believe this, ladies and gentlemen, for one simple reason. At the end of the day what Obama wants is for the government to get credit for whatever, if anything, works because that's what he said, government's the only entity that can do this. And at the end of the day, this pride of authorship thing I think is BS. Of course he wants the government to get the credit, meaning that he will. He says the old Washington ways will be abandoned. Political posturing, he said, a thing of the past. All you have to do, he said, is show him good ideas, show him they work, and he will adopt them.
|Well, now, to me, taking people at their word, that was an invitation. Show him good ideas, show him they work, and he'll adopt them. So, ladies and gentlemen, for the sake of argument, let's take the president-select at his word. In addition to the retail figures over Christmas being lousy, we also had new retail figures showing that high-end retailers got clobbered this season. Saks Fifth Avenue, a 20% drop in same-store sales. It's so bad at Saks Fifth Avenue they're thinking of relocating either to Lexington Avenue or maybe all the way over to York Avenue, Saks York Avenue is what they might have to do. Williams-Sonoma, a 24% drop in sales because the rich, the high end, are not going in there and buying things. According to press reports, the affluent have been spooked by the financial meltdown. And then there's this, and this is because my memory is unparalleled, I recall this. Right before Christmas, the AP ran a story bemoaning the plight of the wealthy who were out bargain hunting. We told you about this at the time. They were out bargain hunting, they were looking for discounts, and the AP said this has crippled the economy. |
Now, remember, Obama said, show me what works, and we'll do it. Well, the AP, Obama's own news service, AP-Obama, when the rich stop spending, all hell breaks loose. When the rich start looking for bargains, Saks Fifth Avenue has to move over to Lexington Avenue. When Macy's is shutting down all over the place, when Bergdorf Goodman has to put things on sale, you're in big trouble. Tiffany, all the jewelry places, if those things have to start discounting and people who normally spend their money there start looking for discounts, we're in trouble. The AP said this, bemoaning the plight of retailers. Beyond even that, ladies and gentlemen, AP ran a story last week bemoaning the fact, retailers are bemoaning the fact that nobody might be willing to pay full price for items again. Let's say that you went in someplace and an item you wanted cost $200 but because of the downturn they're offering it now for $35 or $50, just to move it out, retailers are worried that once the economy comes back and that item goes back to $200 bucks, that the average customer say, "Why should I pay $200 bucks when you sold it to me for $35?" So they're worried, folks, retailers are worried nobody is buying anything except the rich, and the rich are looking for discounts. And this is hurting high-end retailers.
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