What the numbers are telling us is that there has been no real recovery — and that there’s not going to be one under Obama.
The most important fact to take from the September unemployment report released last week is that almost three years after the recession began the economy was still losing jobs! Almost 100,000 (95,000) additional jobs were lost last month from the economy overall. That makes 400,000 jobs lost since May. Moreover, in a regular annual benchmark revision to calibrate unemployment rates for updated data, the BLS reported a further 366,000 jobs lost for March. The total number of Americans unemployed stands at almost 15 million (14.8).
In addition, the number employed part time for economic reasons rose to 9.5 million in September. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports, “These individuals were working part time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full time job.”
The depression continues for African Americans with 16.1% unemployment, near that level for a year now. Hispanics suffer 12.4% unemployment, and Obamanomics is punishing teenagers the most with 26% unemployment.
The BLS reports the U6 unemployment rate, which includes the unemployed, those marginally attached to the labor force (discouraged), and those working part time for economic reasons, at 17.1%. That is the highest point over the past year, and probably since the Great Depression.
While the National Bureau of Economic Research declared the recession technically over last summer, for this poor performance to continue 33 months after the recession began indicates fundamental economic decline for America. What the numbers are telling us is that there has been no real recovery.
Sean Hannity’s Caller
Last week, a young caller to Sean Hannity’s radio program identifying herself as a liberal expressed the sentiment that still holds President Obama’s job approval in the mid-40s. She said, “President Obama has just had two years to turn the economy around. Didn’t the Republicans have 8 years to screw it up? Shouldn’t we be giving the President more time?”
President Obama himself is out there on the stump milking this sentiment for all it is worth, still blaming George Bush and the Republicans for the economy. Without this sentiment holding up what support he still has, he would have already been run out of town. Here are the metrics by which the President’s economic performance should be judged.
I have been reporting regularly in this column for a year and a half that the average recession since World War II has been 10 months, with the longest previously being 16 months. The recession began in December, 2007, 34 months ago by now. The sentiment expressed by Hannity’s caller, reflecting the views of Obama’s remaining base of political support, shows why these basic facts are so important.
Based on the long standing history and rhythms of the American economy, we should have had a booming recovery by now. Even more so, since the deeper the recession the stronger the recovery. Real economic growth in the first 4 quarters of Reagan’s recovery from the deep 1981-82 recession was a whopping 7.7%. Even the recovery under President Ford from the deep 1973-74 recession sported real economic growth of 6.2%.
But under President Obama we are already in another downward spiral, with real growth falling from 5% in the fourth quarter of 2009, to 3.7% in the first quarter of this year, to 1.7% in the second quarter.
Moreover, as the brilliant economist John Lott explained for FoxNews.com yesterday, the base unemployment rate has been stuck at least at 9.5% for 14 months now, over three full percentage points higher than the average unemployment rate during the recession. Since Obama became President, the U.S. unemployment rate has increased faster than 25 of 30 other major industrialized countries, as reported by the Economist.
As Lott summarizes, “For the last couple of years, President Obama keeps claiming that the recession was the worst economy since the Great Depression. But this is not correct. This is the worst ‘recovery’ since the Great Depression.” The extended stagnation, high unemployment, and the troubling potential for a double dip recession is starting to look more like the Depression itself now.
Stimulus Stupidity and Public Policy Malpractice
But the indictment of Obamanomics goes beyond the actual performance so far. Even worse is that the economic policies have been so illogical, so transparently doomed to failure, and so threatening to America’s future.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?