- Cullman, Alabama


May 30, 2013

Bringing back the economy

CULLMAN — The economic picture across the United States is beginning to smooth out for many Americans.

Employment appears to be on the upswing, housing prices are going up, and stocks have been reaching record highs.

In fact, a survey by the Conference Board says consumer confidence has topped 76 percent, which is quite a leap over recent years and months. The same survey says consumers are also confident about the next six months, which is expected to increase spending in the economy and growth in hiring.

Let’s hope that speculation comes true. The American marketplace since the onset of the Great Recession has been unnerving. Massive borrowing at the federal level and years of layoffs have left many Americans gloomy over the future.

Economists also note that much of the confidence gain is among more affluent Americans, even though hiring is on the increase at all levels. The economy has added 208,000 jobs a month since November, which is well above the average of 138,000 a month for the previous six months.

The nation’s weakness remains the massive amount of jobs that have been shipped out as part of the global economy. Manufacturing jobs at various pay levels have been outsourced to the point of making some communities into ghost towns.

Some states, such as Alabama, have found success in bringing jobs back through investors from other countries. The search for wider markets for state-produced agricultural products is also enjoying some success.

One of the keys to unlocking the economic future in the United States continues to be a reduction in nagging government burdens, while providing states and local communities more flexibility in recruiting investments. Alongside this need is greater control in public education at the state and local levels. Improving the success rate at schools will create a more able work force to contend with the ever-competitive job market.


Text Only
  • EDITORIAL: Gaining a lifetime of success

    The arguments for a deeper investment in the arts for public school children are overwhelmingly favorable. The money is simply not following the logic.

    April 6, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: Gun bill backfires

    State Sen. Scott Beason, a Gardendale Republican, who will soon vacate his seat, is feeling a sense of disappointment that his bill to allow Alabamians to carry loaded handguns in their cars without a concealed weapon permit was shot down this week.

    April 5, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: Above and beyond

    The announcement of the annual Distinguished Citizen and Unsung Heroes recipients by The Cullman Times has revealed another lineup of caring people who go the extra mile in building a better local community.

    April 3, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: A chance to lead growth

    In an era that concluded about a generation ago, residents of any average town or city in America had pretty much one destination for shopping.

    April 2, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: Out of date, out of time

    The Alabama State Constitution, one of the nation’s oldest at 113 years old, continues to linger despite a wide range of efforts to completely rewrite the document.

    April 2, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: A private matter on display

    Following the arguments generated by legalized abortion leave many people in this generation walking away from the issue with a sense of confusion.

    April 1, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: Drug policy sensible, needed

    Cullman City School officials’ decision to slow plans for implementing a student drug testing program was reached after a series of public input meetings.

    April 1, 2014

  • Rage against the weather

    A lot of things can be predicted in life. Economic downturn. A sour reaction to a bill in Congress or the president’s State of the Union address.

    February 3, 2014

  • A legacy protected by truth

    The holiday commemorating the life and times of Martin Luther King Jr. passed with various celebrations and speeches across the nation.

    January 21, 2014

  • Ignoring the state’s needs

    Two points about the Alabama budget process are coming to light, and both are disturbing.
    With the Legislature in session, reports are already showing that lawmakers will have more money to spend on education and less for all the other vital state services that fall under the strained General Fund.

    January 20, 2014

AP Video