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September 7, 2009

Happy Lack of Labor Day, Brought to You by Barack Obama


One month ago, I wrote a column titled “Rejoice! Barack Obama Only Lost 247,000 Jobs Last Month.” I was wrong. It later turned out that he lost 276,000 jobs.


But who’s counting?


Well, actually, all of America is counting, with the apparent exception of the president himself.


When the economy lost more than a quarter-million jobs in July only, Obama thought that was pretty awesome news: “Today we’re pointed in the right direction . . . these two thirds of the Recovery Act have helped people weather the worst phase of this recession, while saving jobs and stabilizing our economy . . . that’s how we’ve pulled the economy back from the brink. That’s why we’re turning this economy around.”


Wow, that’s pretty darn positive. What more could he have said had he actually gained jobs? “Yaaaay” – along with a marching band and cheerleaders in the background?


Let’s see what has happened since. In August, Obama lost another 216,000 jobs, and shot the unemployment rate up to a dizzying 9.7 percent (assuming, for a moment, that the numbers don’t get revised upward again – and not counting the countless individuals not included in official numbers).


The Obama Administration’s response? They thought it was even better than last time!


Vice President Joe Biden looked at the numbers and saw that “the Recovery Act is, in fact, working.” He continued, “Thanks to the Recovery Act, where we are today is a much better place than we could have possibly been without it.” By the way, by “Recovery Act” he means the $787 billion wasteful pork bill full of goodies for Democratic members of Congress.


Obama adviser Christina Romer was no less optimistic, insisting that we rejoice again when we consider that the 216,000 jobs lost in August are less than those we had been losing in previous months.


Curiously, she misses a minor detail. Those 216,000 jobs lost in August were lost in addition to all the jobs that had been lost previously. Obama and his advisers, however, make it sound like the counter resets to zero and starts fresh every month.


When a patient who lost a liter of blood in a surgical accident loses half a liter the second day, the doctors don’t rejoice, because the patient has by now lost a cumulative 1.5 liters. By the Obama Administration’s logic, when the patient is completely drained of blood, the doctors would declare victory that blood loss has been reduced to zero.


Likewise, using the administration’s logic, when 100 percent of the population is unemployed, Obama could proudly proclaim that the economy has completely stopped shedding jobs.


But in fact, August has been the worst month for the job market thus far, because all of the jobs that had been lost previously were still lost, and now another 216,000 have been added to the pile.


Never mind that the Obama Administration predicted that passing the so-called “Recovery Act” (better  known as Porkulus) would result in peak unemployment of 8 percent, whereas failing to pass the legislation would have caused unemployment to rise to 9 percent. Well, now that unemployment has far exceeded both numbers due to the Porkulus, the administration is pretending it never made any predictions.


Astonishingly, Joe Biden last week announced: “The Council of Economic Advisors plans to report to the nation their projections of jobs created or saved through the development of the Recovery Act. I’m optimistic – as a matter of fact, I’m confident – that that report will show that we met or exceed our goal, that goal, as well.”


Wow, was the “goal” to annihilate the job market?


Even more amazingly, he added: “Two hundred days in, the Recovery Act is doing more, faster and more efficiently and more effectively than most people expected.”


But . . . but . . . you expected that your Recovery Act would make unemployment peak at only 8 percent. And now it is at 9.7 percent and still rising. How can any human reconcile these two positions?


We can, however, agree with one of Biden’s assertions: “The Recovery Act has played a significant role in changing the trajectory of our economy.”


It has. It has dug the nation much further into debt. It has transferred wealth from the job creators to the well-connected. It has enhanced the power of crooked politicians and the coffers of their special interests. It has and will have caused the loss of countless jobs. It has helped increase the unemployment rate to 9.7 percent, already.


This painful reality has been brought to you by Barack Obama. Tax increases, threats of bigger government, egregious federal spending, higher energy costs, and special interest power, all proudly espoused by Obama, do marvels at encouraging layoffs and discouraging new hires.


Happy Lack of Labor Day.

© 2009 North Star Writers Group. May not be republished without permission.


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