published Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

Little progress against unemployment

  • photo
    John Gooch files for unemployment at the Georgia Department of Labor office in Dalton, Ga.
    Staff File Photo by Margaret Fenton

"Discouraging" is one fitting way to describe the negative U.S. unemployment reports that have been coming in month after month.

There just isn't enough job creation going on in the United States to push down the high unemployment rate, and that sadly held true for the month of September.

Newly released figures from the U.S. Department of Labor show that joblessness remained stuck at 9.1 percent in September -- representing no change from the August unemployment rate.

About 100,000 jobs were technically added in September. But even that limited job growth was deceptive, because nearly half of those jobs were not actually newly created. Rather, they were simply the rehiring of about 45,000 Verizon Communications employees who had been on strike.

And the job creation that did take place was insufficient to make a dent in our too-high unemployment rate. The U.S. economy needs to be producing well over 100,000 jobs per month just to keep up with normal growth of the workforce from new high school and college graduates and from immigration. And we need to create well over 200,000 jobs per month to make any real progress on reducing joblessness.

Plainly, that is not happening. And yet President Barack Obama's "solution" to high unemployment is to urge Congress to pour more taxes and borrowed money into a new "stimulus" bill -- even though the previous stimulus failed and left the country burdened with greater debt.

We're going in the wrong direction, but Washington doesn't seem willing to make the necessary U-turn.

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fairmon said...

Nothing is said about the 3.2 million manufacturing jobs employers can't find qualified workers for. Nothing about the 1 million per year that drop out of school and fail to get a high school education. Interview the Wall St. protesters and ask what their education and qualifications are.

October 11, 2011 at 5:41 a.m.
conservative said...

Obamboozler's newest socialist job bill is expected to be defeated today in the Senate. Dingy Harry Reid has been reluctant to bring it up for a vote because he doesn't want America to see how much Demoncrats want to raise taxes. They also have not submited a budget in over 2 years for the same reason. There are 23 Demoncrat Senators versus 10 Republican Senators up for reelection next year. Their loss will be America's gain.

October 11, 2011 at 9:51 a.m.
EaTn said...

So what solutions to massive jobs creation has the GOP House passed to the Senate? As usual it is the party of all mouth and no solutions.

October 11, 2011 at 10:37 a.m.
nucanuck said...

If we can't produce more jobs...long term...and it looks like we can't..then this would seem like a good time to concentrate on producing fewer people.

Worldwide, life seems to becoming less precious every passing day. The question is not how many humans can survive on the planet, but rather how many can live in a sustainable state. We seem to have passed that point and we now find it uncomfortable to even discuss it.

Jobs shortages, here and worldwide, are only a manifestation of a bigger problem.

It is we! We are it!

October 11, 2011 at 10:57 a.m.
Rickaroo said...

"We're going in the wrong direction?" We're not going in ANY direction! The Republicans are putting up road blocks every which way we turn and it's all because their number one priority is to keep Obama from being re-elected. That's it, folks. That's the only plan they've got. They're a one-trick pony and they're focused with such laser intensity on their one and only trick that they cannot see the forest for the trees.

It's been almost 3 years since this recession hit, we're still deeply mired in it, and it's only now that there is even a jobs bill on the table. Everything that's contained in it the Republicans had agreed to at one time but now that it's coming from Obama's desk they snub their noses at it as being socialistic and impractical.

Three years into it and the Repubs still don't even have a jobs bill. Nothing. Nada. Instead we get the same old claptrap about cutting spending and not taxing the much maligned rich folks, those magnanimous "job creators." If there is anything wrong at all with Obama's jobs bill, it is that it's not nearly broad enough in scope. But at least it's something. And what do the Republicans have again? Oh yeah.....nothing!

October 11, 2011 at 11:14 a.m.
rolando said...

There are evidently plenty of jobs in China and India, nucanuck, and they are the major population boosters. People are not the problem; over-regulating government is.

You want jobs to skyrocket here? There is a cost, of course -- TANSTAAFL.

All you have to do is close the EPA's doors; eliminate the Dept of Labor as well as the Dept of Health, Education, and Welfare; shut down the IRS,..and retire all those government workers. And stop paying able-bodied people to sit on their asses drawing unemployment/welfare.

Increasing the number of jobs requires private industry's participation. Without it, there will be no new jobs beyond the burger flipping variety.

Take that money gained and establish crony-free US-owned manufacturing-friendly incentives...like VW, pre-Haslam Amazon, etc. Yeah, I know, there is a dichotomy [trichotomy??] there, so do the same with US companies -- with foreign ownership prohibited.

Never happen, of course.

October 11, 2011 at 11:18 a.m.
nucanuck said...

rolando,

India and China have vastly more people on subsistance living than can ever be employed. Their long term problems are worse than in the US if they can't find ways to curtail population.

Your pure capitalism/libertarian fantasy creates far more problems than it solves.

Productivity increases have reduced the demand ratio for workers at the same time as the number of available workers has increased...there's your core problem.

October 11, 2011 at 11:57 a.m.
conservative said...

The part of the misnamed "jobs bill" that I'm elated over is the proposed payroll (think Socialism Security) tax cut for business. Obamboozler wants to cut the employer's contribution in half from 6.2% to 3.1% . Yes, "tax cuts for the rich"! This will deplete that wonderful, mythical, sacred "trust fund" so endeared by lieberals. Pause and think, a Demoncrat President proposing the ruin of Socialism Security. Business wont bite because this tax cut is small compared to other tax hikes in the bill. See which Demoncrats side with Obamination and remember.

October 11, 2011 at 12:04 p.m.
nucanuck said...

conservative,

If the social contract is destroyed as you seem to hope, do you really think you could have a decent life in that America?

October 11, 2011 at 1:52 p.m.
carlB said...

By the way, are all of the people with lost jobs and their families living on Government assistance only Democrats? I think not. I am curious as to where the trillions of dollars located off shore owned by the global corporations came from? They now want the tax rate reduced so they can bring it back into the US.

October 11, 2011 at 8:23 p.m.
carlB said...

US consumers will have to decrease the buying of the "global corporate monopolies" imported goods when the US workers do not have jobs or money. Then the corporations will have less money to get their goods manufactured in other total lower cost countries. The US cannot recover unless the balance between the private middle class manufacturing workers tax base to pay for the public workers and we cannot sustain with a $600 Billion dollars per year trade deficit with the global corporations.

October 11, 2011 at 8:27 p.m.
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