American Morning

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August 4th, 2009
04:00 PM ET

We Listen – Your comments 8/4/2009

Editor's Note: Most of Monday’s American Morning audience was unconcerned about increased middle class taxes to pay for universal health care.

  • Michael: I spend between $7,000 and $8,000 per year for family health insurance. I would rather give that money to the Federal Government via higher taxes than a private company whose only interest is making money for their stock holders. My guess is that my tax increase will be a lot less than what I pay for my private insurance...... it's a no brainer!!
  • Linda R.: Let's stop scaring the public with the "tax bogeyman". If you took a truly honest poll, most Americans would not mind paying a few cents more in taxes if it meant access to health care, and a better life in general. Also, let's not forget, that it was the Republican party, not president Obama, that got us into this mess in the first place. Unfortunately, we have a "corporate mentality" which translates into the power of terrifying the public into voting against their own interests in order to serve the powerful. The MSM is guilty of aiding these crooks by advancing their agenda. If we had a single-payer health care plan, all that lovely money doled out to greedy politicians by the private health care providers would dry up. At the minimum, a public option would help enormously, but the rich and powerful could care less about ordinary Americans. If McCain had managed to eke out a victory last November, (heaven forbid), we would already have bread lines, runs on the banks, and people selling apples in the street. Oh yes, and Iran would already be a pile of rubble (think "shock and awe II"). Give our new president a chance to turn this mess around. He's not "Merlin the Magician". We are in a much better place than we were under Bush/Cheney, and you know it.

How do you feel about paying higher taxes for universal health care? Would you, as the first viewer noted, prefer to pay the government over a for-profit institution?


Filed under: We Listen
August 4th, 2009
01:27 PM ET
August 4th, 2009
11:56 AM ET
August 4th, 2009
11:54 AM ET
August 4th, 2009
10:16 AM ET

What happens to your clunker?

One estimate shows some 120-thousand cars were traded in under the Cash for Clunkers program.

A lot of you have written in asking if those trade-ins are not supposed to go back out on the road where do they go?

You are about to get your answer.

Filed under: Transportation
August 4th, 2009
09:15 AM ET

Stocks kick off the month with a rally

Let's step back and assess your stock market investments...

Anything tied to the major stock market averages are clawing BACK from the Crash of '08. Stocks have now finished the best five months since 1938.

Let's look at the S&P 500 – it represents the stocks of 500 different companies and is the benchmark – it is up 11 percent this year.

S&P 500 chart

Back to levels not seen since last can see on this chart, a collapse all the way to 12 year lows in March...and then a sharp rebound...the S&P 500 as of yesterday's close, is up 48 percent from that March low.

So what does that mean for you? It means if you are still invested in the market, the stock portion of your portfolio is recovering. Why? Because the stock market is anticipating the economy will turn around.

The economy is still very weak but auto sales, housing, manufacturing, construction and earnings show signs of stabilizing. As one economist put it...the freefall of the skydive is over, the chute has been pulled and the economy is STILL falling, but now floating down.

Skeptics see caution ahead: The jobless rate is expected to rise to 10 percent, perhaps higher. Foreclosures continue. American consumers are spending less and paying down their debt – good for their personal finances, but it's behavior that could slow a recovery.

And there are serious concerns about how weak the recovery could be when it comes. Will it be a jobless recovery, with slow jobs growth and weak wage growth?

No doubt this spring/summer rally has been powerful, but you haven't made all your money back. The S&P 500 price is still down 19% versus a year ago. It's got a long way to go.

Filed under: Minding Your Business
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