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The editors of Newsweek thought so.
“Lay Off the Layoffs,” the magazine advised corporate America in its Feb. 15, 2010 cover story. “Our overreliance on downsizing is killing workers, the economy — and even the bottom line.”
Let’s revisit the moment — for what it says about the soon-to-be-defunct magazine… and the ill-informed thinking that passes for wisdom in Hollywood, academia, and, not least of all, the Obama administration.
Thirteen months into the Obama presidency, it was painfully clear that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, signed on Feb. 17, 2009, wasn’t doing what it was supposed to do — which was to keep unemployment below 8 percent. Instead, the nation’s unemployment rate had soared to 10 percent — or 15.8 percent, if you added “discouraged workers” who had given up looking for jobs and others doing part-time work because they couldn’t find full-time employment.
What do you do when the facts don’t fit your narrative?
You change the facts to fit the narrative. You lie if you have to. You stall and obfuscate and wait for people to lose interest as the story grows old and muddled.
That is the Obama way of covering up mistakes and responding to criticism. We have seen it repeatedly.
It is what the Obama administration did following the murder of the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three co-workers on the eleventh anniversary of the date known as 9/11.
With the Nov. 6 election just eight weeks away, the administration decided to stick with the already-established (and self-flattering) narrative for the Middle East and world affairs. This was: “Osama is no more,” Al Qaeda is crippled, and “the tide of war is receding.”
Despite immediate and compelling evidence to the contrary, President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and UN Ambassador Susan Rice refused to admit that the deaths in Benghazi had been the result of a premeditated terrorist attack involving an Al Qaeda affiliate. For two full weeks, they insisted that it was a “spontaneous” demonstration that got out of hand. In short, they threw sand in the face of the American people — in the apparent hope that this would help Obama win a second term.
With that bogus line of thought came the oft repeated and shameful apology, which I will paraphrase as follows:
We hope that our friends in the Islamic world will forgive us for the fact that there was someone amongst us — some wretched and hateful creature out of the 300 million-plus people living in sometimes unseemly freedom inside the United States of America — who put together a 14-minute video that found its way to YouTube… where it offended the tender sensibilities of many devout Muslims — including (and this-is-okay) those who rioted on Sept. 11, 2012, and (this-is-not-so-okay) some others of an extremist bent who murdered our ambassador and three co-workers in Libya.
With the emerging jobs fiasco following the failed stimulus package, the administration acted in a similar way — painting happy faces over damning evidence as long as it possibly could. First of all, it stuck with the narrative that the “Stimulus” was working — and working miracles. This time, it invented a new and entirely meaningless metric — jobs created or saved. This number grew and grew — even as total employment recorded by the Bureau of Labor Statistics was stuck or falling. Eventually, even the administration’s own economists grew tired of this obviously phony metric which took credit for “saving” jobs from disappearing at a theoretically assumed faster rate. So Obama’s advisers dropped the metric — to keep from being laughed at for their stupidity.
But back to Newsweek, which, as Jeffrey Lord noted in a recent column (“Twinkicide: Death by Liberalism”), was sold for a single a dollar.
Not knowing that I would be paying five times the final sale price for the entire magazine, I spotted the issue with “Lay Off the Layoffs” cover as I was checking out a grocery store check-out line in early 2010, and I plunked down $5 to buy a copy.
For me it was money well spent. I just wanted to see how — with its lefty bias — Newsweek would play around the idea that rich and powerful executives had strangled economy — just for the hell of it.
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?
H/T to National Review Online