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Ryan to Iowa: "Are You Better Off?"

Posted by on Sep. 6, 2012 at 12:00 AM
  • 16 Replies

Iowa continues to be a frequent campaign stop for both parties as Paul Ryan visited Adel yesterday as part of his two day visit, which comes just days before another visit by President Obama and Vice President Biden and their wives.

Ryan spent much of his time Adel on the economy and continued with an emerging theme for the Republicans of pulling out the famous Reagan question of "Are you better off now than you were four years ago?"

In Adel the crowd of roughly 750 supporters responded with a resounding "No!" (obviously the desired response) but it does make me think about the inherent risk of asking that questions, because there are people out there, people like me, for whom the answer is a resounding "You bet I am".

My family hasn't been without struggles in the last four years. We owned a home in Arizona that lost over 55% of its value from 2006 to 2008 when the housing market that got wildly overheated during the Bush years finally had its inevitable crash. But aside from the house, we are better. My salary is higher than it has ever been, allowing my husband to stay home with our kids. My son will attend a free, state funded, preschool program starting this week that will be a great fit for him. We've had the privilege of seeing several loving, long-term gay couples that we care about have the opportunity to get married. I know of people whose lives and finances are much better off thanks to the Affordable Care Act.

In some ways I think the election reveals the worst in us as a country (as anyone who is on Facebook can attest. We all seem to have some friend or relative claiming on or other of the candidates is an evil America hater) but I'm glad Ryan is asking the "Are you better off?" question to remind so many of us that the answer is "YES".

Do you feel like your family is better off that you were four years ago?

by on Sep. 6, 2012 at 12:00 AM
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by on Sep. 6, 2012 at 11:05 AM

A little better, but with gas and food prices on the rise and cost of living, we are still pay check to pay check and hate it!

But at least we are working again!

by Member on Sep. 6, 2012 at 11:25 AM

The struggles that our family have had over the last four years have more to do with the short-sightedness of the greedy men running the company my husband works for than the general state of the US economy, or any choices the government has made.

Overall...we are holding steady.  My husband is starting a new job and it will made a HUGE difference in our lives, but again, that is because the decision makers in his old company aren't thinking about anyone except themselves.

I will say that our insurance rates are outrageous and even though we have it, we still have to pay an enormous amount out of pocket, but that has been going on for the last 8-10 years, not the last 4.  That has nothing to do with the current state of affairs either.

Things are improving for us...slowly.

by on Sep. 6, 2012 at 11:37 AM

My family is about the same, but I think as a whole, YES!

by Member on Sep. 6, 2012 at 12:07 PM

I do feel like my family is better off than we were 4 years ago.  Would love to be in a crowd where that question is asked so I could yell out "YES!!" (And then probably get quickly wrestled out the door, LOL)   I certainly feel a lot of uncertainty these days, but I can say with certainty that we are not worse off than we were before.

by on Sep. 6, 2012 at 1:06 PM
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I don't feel like my life has really changed in the last four years. Which is fine by me. I don't want to be worse off. I'll take the same or better. We're not worse off, we're doing good, I can't really expect more than that. AND AND it's not the presidents job to improve my life, that's MY job.

by on Sep. 6, 2012 at 2:50 PM
Well family incomes, in general, are the lowest they have been in years. I think people are making do with less and more people are getting government aid then ever before. So I think it is fair to say, in general, most people are worse off, at least speaking from facts, not anecdotally.
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by Member on Sep. 6, 2012 at 3:25 PM
No, our lives (mine and my DF's) are not better off than they were 4 yrs ago. But, they're not much worse, either. Our only complaint is that we can't find jobs... But I don't know if a president could actually fix that
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by on Sep. 6, 2012 at 7:57 PM
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Well, I think we are about the same, but we added a child, and we are older.  So our expenses have gone up, and as we age we all apart more medical bills.  However, we are no longer going to have to worry about pre-existing conditions as far as health insurance goes, and I'm very thankful for that.   I was petrified of being tested for RA because if I tested positive, then I would never get health insurance again...but now, I'm not worried about it. 

I feel very secure with Obama as the leader of our country.  His administration has seen the end of the war in Iraq and found and killed Bin Laden.  

I'm hoping that with another four years, we can see a lot more progress in renewable energy, and job creation.  I think if the last jobs bill had been passed through congress (instead of not even being brought for a vote 32 times) we would be even better off than we are now, but change takes a looooooong time :)

by Member on Sep. 7, 2012 at 12:17 AM

Yes, yes I do. Although really, the reasons I'm better off isn't so much to do with who the P.O.T.U.S is.

If cannabis were legal, we wouldn't be going through these issues.

by on Sep. 10, 2012 at 9:17 AM
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Better off from September 8, 2008. No.
From January 20, 2009. Yes

We have better jobs., I have my own business, retirement account is getting fatter again, stocks rebounded.

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