A not “all” wrong, but questionable, source

Bush-Obama

Last week, I shared—via a Facebook re-post—a table created by Occupy Democrat, without verifying the content. The group’s chart uses eight statistical categories to favorably compare President Obama’s record to President Bush’s in his last year (see below).

A friend from high school with whom I share similar musical tastes—if not political leanings—immediately commented on the post: “Do some research. This has been posted over & over, and each line item has been proven wrong.”

Well, Jeff, based on a cross-check of independent resources (reported below), we determined five statements were true, one was somewhat true, and two were false. The fact that the chart is only about 70% accurate serves as a reminder not to accept such posted materials or criticisms thereof at face value.

Fact Check of Occupy Democrat Table

  • Unemployment Rate: TRUE. The unemployment rate in December 2008 was 7.3 in December 2008 (Occupy Democrat said 7.2) compared to 5.1 in August 2015.1
  • Cost of GasFALSE. Although it was $3.24 per gallon during the year as alleged by Occupy Democrat (OD), gas cost $1.66/gal. on Dec. 14, 20082 versus $2.27 on 9/27/15 per AAA.3
  • Medical Uninsured RateTRUE. It was 15.4% at the end of 2008 (OD said 15%) and 11.9 at the end of the first quarter 2015. OD reported 9.2%, which may reflect a more current rate from later this year.4
  • Oil Barrels ImportedSOMEWHAT TRUE. OD reported that Bush imported 11 mil. gallons at the end of his administration and Obama 4.5 million. Our research indicates that the US imported 3.8 mil. barrels during 2008 as compared to 2.68 mil. during 2014.5
  • Teen Pregnancy RateTRUE. OD reported that there were 40.2 teen births per 1,000 in December 2008 compared 26.5 per 1,000. The World Bank reports 38/1K for 2008 and 24 for 2014, the most recent year available.6
  • Iran CentrifugesFALSE. OD’s comparison of 19,000 centrifuges to 6,000 has no basis in reality. At the end of 2008, estimates show Iran to have 5,000 centrifuges as compared to 19,000 today.7
  • GDP GrowthTRUE. Actual numbers were -2.92% at the end of 2008 (OD said -0.3%) as compared to 3.91% as of March 2015 (OD said 3.7%).8
  • Dow JonesTRUE. Actual numbers were 8,776.39 at the end of 2008 (OD gave Bush 10,355) to 16,351.38 as of Sept. 26, 2015 (OD gave Obama’s economy 16,271).9
  1. http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS14000000.
  2. http://money.cnn.com/2008/12/14/news/economy/gas/?postversion=2008121413.
  3. http://www.fuelgaugereport.com/.
  4. http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SP.ADO.TFRT.
  5. http://www.gallup.com/poll/182348/uninsured-rate-dips-first-quarter.aspx
  6. http://www.eia.gov/dnav/pet/hist/LeafHandler.ashx?n=pet&s=mcrimus1&f=m.
  7. http://www.iranwatch.org/our-publications/weapon-program-background-report/history-irans-nuclear-program and http://www.bloombergview.com/quicktake /irans-uranium-enrichment
  8. http://www.multpl.com/us-gdp-growth-rate/table/by-quarter
  9. http://www.macrotrends.net/1358/dow-jones-industrial-average-last-10-years
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