I remember the Presidency of James Earl “Dhimmi” Carter. Those memories are not fond.
While the most visceral of those memories remain the Iranian kidnapping of our Embassy personnel (an act of war) and the disaster that was Desert One (Carter’s rescue operation run from the White House Situation Room), I also remember the Misery Index.
For those who don’t remember it, the Misery Index was the sum of inflation (as measured by the CPI as calculated then) and unemployment (again, as measured then) rates. The record was 21.98 in June of 1980.
Notice the past tense?
Using the same metrics as were used in 1980 the current Misery Index is in excess of 25.
Shadow Stat Misery Index Highest on Record
John Williams, over at Shadow Stats,
compiles economic data for inflation and unemployment the way it used
to be calculated pre-1990. Based on that data, the CPI inflation rate is
over 10%, and the unemployment rate is over 15% (see charts). The
Misery Index is the sum of the current inflation rate and the
unemployment rate. If it were to be calculated using the older
methods, the Index would now be over 25, a record high. It surpasses the
old index high of 21.98, which occurred in June 1980, when Jimmy Carter
was president. Most believe the height of the Index along with the
Iranian hostage crisis is what caused Carter to lose his re-election
Using current calculation methods, April unemployment came in at 9.0% and the annualized April CPI number came in at 4.8%, for a Misery Index reading of 13.8.
The last time the Index came in with a higher reading with this index reading was in March 1983, with a reading of 13.90.
Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.