If the prognosticators are correct, the U.S. House will swing to the Republicans tomorrow amid an anger that things haven’t improved in the country the way many voters expected. What we don’t have, however, is a yardstick for measuring success/failure.
Here’s an example comparing several categories from this time in 2008 to today. Feel free to suggest additional categories.
|Minnesota unemployment rate||5.6%||7.0%|
|Number of unemployed people (nationwide)||9,199,000||14,140,000|
|Number of Minnesota people with jobs||2,784,286||2,749,000|
|Per capita national debt||$34,278||$44,196|
|30-year mortgage rate||6.17%||4.65%|
|Minnesota rate of foreclosure||1 in every 1,065 homes||1 in every 690 homes|
|Price of gasoline (Minnesota)||$2.31||$2.84|
|Soldiers killed in action in previous month (Iraq & Afghanistan)||30||52|
|Top Minnesota search terms on Google (News category)||Obama||CNN|
|Big three cars sold (September)||493,000||433,483|
What numbers should be in place for 2012 to help us judge whether things are better (or worse) than we’d hoped?