How quickly Obama's campaign of hope has turned to utter despair:
In a sign of increasing pessimism about the direction of the U.S. economy, roughly four in ten Americans now believes it is in permanent decline, according to a new CBS News/New York Times poll.
The percentage that sees the economy as in permanent decline has increased from 28 percent in October 2010 to 39 percent in the new poll. And the percentage that expects the economy to eventually recover to its past heights has fallen from 68 percent last October to 57 percent today.
That's not the only finding signaling that Americans have a negative outlook about their economic future. Only 20 percent now say the economy is getting better, the lowest number since last August. Thirty-one percent say it is getting worse. Roughly half stay it is staying the same.