Economics, Pethokoukis

June jobs swoon: America’s labor market depression continues


This was not the employment report either the American worker or the Obama campaign wanted to see right now. The Labor Department said the U.S. economy created just 80,000 jobs in June, less than the 90,000 economists had been forecasting. And private-sector job growth was just 84,000, down sharply from 105,000 in May. Not doing fine.

The unemployment rate stayed at a lofty 8.2%.

As a research note from RDQ economics put it: “The good news is that employment growth is not slowing further but there is no sign of it picking up either.  At this pace, job creation is not fast enough to lower the unemployment rate with the labor force growing at close to 150,000 per month on average.”  Shorter: Stagnation Nation

This continues to be the longest streak — 41 months — of unemployment of 8% or higher since the Great Depression. And recall that back in 2009, Team Obama predicted that if Congress passed its $800 billion stimulus plan, the unemployment rate would be around 5.6% today.

Just 75,000 jobs were created, on average, per month in the second quarter vs. 226,000 in the first quarter. And for the year, monthly job creation has averaged just 150,000 vs. 153,000 last year. Both numbers are extremely weak.

But those top-line numbers actually overstate the health of the labor market.

– If the size of the U.S. labor force as a share of the total population was the same as it was when Barack Obama took office—65.7% then vs. 63.8% today—the U-3 unemployment rate would be 10.9%. Even if you take into account that the LFP should be declining as America ages, the unemployment rate would be 10.5%.

– The broader U-6 unemployment rate, which includes “all persons marginally attached to the labor force, plus total employed part time for economic reasons,”  is 14.9%, up a bit from May.

– The average duration of unemployment ticked up to 39.9 weeks.

– It will take 219,000 net new jobs a month for unemployment rate to be below 8% on Election Day if current participation rate holds steady.

– Job growth during the three-year Obama recovery has averaged just 75,000 a month for a total of 2.7 million. During the first three years of the Reagan Recovery, job growth averaged 273,000 a month for a total of 9.8 million. If you adjust for the larger U.S. population today, the Reagan Recovery averaged 360,000 jobs a month for a three-year total of 13 million jobs.

– The U.S. work force remains shrunken with just 58.6% employed:

None of this should be surprising. The economy grew a bit less than 2% last year, and we averaged about 150,000 new jobs a month. We are growing a bit less than 2% this year, and job growth is averaging about 150,000 jobs a month. And there are few signs the rest of the year will be any better. And given a) how the eurocrisis is AGAIN flaring up, and b) China continues to slow, it sure seems like 2% growth and 8% unemployment is a best-case scenario with plenty of downside risk — for the economy and the Obama campaign.

James Pethokoukis is a columnist and blogger at the American Enterprise Institute. Previously, he was the Washington columnist for Reuters Breakingviews, the opinion and commentary wing of Thomson Reuters.

 Pethokoukis was the business editor and economics columnist for U.S. News & World Report from 1997 to 2008. He has written for many publications, including The New York Times, The Weekly Standard, Commentary, National Review, The Washington Examiner, USA Today and Investor’s Business Daily.

 Pethokoukis is an official CNBC contributor. In addition, he has appeared numerous times on MSNBC, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, The McLaughlin Group, CNN and Nightly Business Report on PBS. A graduate of Northwestern University and the Medill School of Journalism, Pethokoukis is a 2002 Jeopardy! Champion.

330 thoughts on “June jobs swoon: America’s labor market depression continues

  1. “Job Creation” to Obama and the Dim’s he represents is basically hiring as many government workers as possible thereby putting them on the dole and increasing the number of Dim voters.

  2. I bet none of you can tell me how many jobs were lost in Bush’s last month as president. You know why? Because you did not care. W drove this nation off a fiscal cliff, and you people stand around and claim ‘food stamp recipients are at an all time high’ Well, yes, That is because W drove the economy off a cliff, millions of people lost jobs, and now they are on food stamps because nobody is hiring.

    Another thing nobody here know, but ut us true, is that Fortune 500 companies made record profits last year, and the year before, so, where are the jobs? The profits are there, where are the jobs? The rich get richer, where are the jobs? The Bush tax cuts get extended, where are the jobs?

    • Under Bush W., unemployment was around 4.5!!!!!…the housing market crash,thanks liberlas at fannie and freddie…..were a large contibutor to the mess at the end of Bush’s term. Obamao’s policies have crippled the bad economy …you must be blind! Obamao promised the Unmeploymet rate would be at 5.6???? Either Obamao has been an epic failure as president….OR he is in WAy, Way over his head……which is it? cant have it both ways, liberals!!!!

    • Just keep drinking the Kool Aid. Your messiah sucks, deal with it. Before you trot out the racist card – I can’t stand Biden either, and he’s white.

    • Are you serious? Do you actually beleive what you are writing or are you just such a huge fan of Obama you are trying to convince yourself he is doing a good job? When Reagan took office unemployment topped at 10.5% and intereats rates for mortagages were 12-18% and inflation was at all time highs of 12%, he had much worse situation handed him by Carter than Obama had handed to him by Moron Bush. Obama is a clueless fool, even more so than Bush because he doubles down on everything Bush did. He is doinng the exact opposite of what Reagan and Clinton did to get our economy booming. Stop blaming everyting on Bush and read a book and educate yourserlf. We had back to back, two of our worse Presidents since Carter.

    • Yes in response to your Bush Claim surely someone as smart as yourself saw that the economy was scared to death that Obama would win the presidency and by the time the democratic convention was over Obama OWNED the economy. It was one of his minions that said in 2010 that it’s Obama’s economy, but like I said the floodgates of unemployment opened up when it was looking like Obama would win! What’s that say about your BOY?

    • LOL, you do realize there is more to the entire story than your talking points. “Off a cliff”, it’s very evident where you get your info from.

    • Ooooh, it’s Bush’s fault! That’s right. You’re an idiot. When does this become Obama’s economy? When Romney is president???

    • When does Obama take responsibility? Obama said he could turn this thing around. He had what no president had. He had a super majority in the House and a filibuster proof majority in the Senate. He got everything passed and still every promise he made didn’t happen. But why not blame Bush. By the way, Senator Obama voted for every budget (Obama can’t get a single Democrat to vote for his).

    • The financial crash was caused by the housing bubble bursting. A housing bubble that was created by Democrats who refused the efforts of the Bush Administration to reel in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Go watch the Youtube video of DEMOCRATS in Congress – notably, Barney Frank and the usual suspects – refusing to admit what the dangers were and condemning Republicans and regulators for even trying to intervene. You can look it up.

      • So for six years the Republicans controlled both Houses of Congress and the White House, but never in that time saw fit to straighten out Fannie and Freddie, but the it became a crisis in Bush’s last two years? Is that the straw you’re grasping at?

    • Choco blaming the economy we have now on W is getting old. Yes, He is responsible for driving us into the ditch but as far as I am concered he was a Big govt guy just like O. Trust me the economy hasn’t gone off the cliff yet… However 16 trillion dollars in debt and on its way to 20 T by 2016 (Ouch) if we stay on this path you will really see what driving off a cliff looks like!!

    • Look at the chart you moron. Notice the massive impailing drop after Bush, that belongs to your incompetent Obama. Stop blaming Bush, IT DOESN’T WORK ANYMORE. OWN UP TO THE FAILURES OF YOUR MARXIST LEADER. Continuing to blame Bush is like you continuing to blame your father for you being such an idiot whiner.

    • ChocoCat – W drove this nation off a fiscal cliff? I thought Obama was part of the Democrat-majority Senate at that time, and budgets come from Congress, not the president. Obama did not just show up in Washington on inauguration day.

    • ChocoCat- The data does show the start of the downward trend during the 2008 election period, but you give the incorrect explanation as to why. It’s easy- jump to a conclusion. But, you say W drove us off the fiscal cliff without saying how you think he did that. The main influence to the economy was the downturn in the housing market as influenced by bank setbacks. Banks began going under because of federal mortgage policies which forced them to make bad loans.

    • The Obama Admin said if they spent the trillion dollars on the stimulus it would keep unemployment below 8 percent. They passed the stimulus and unemployment was worse than they predicted without the stimulus. The recession started under Bush and a Democrat controlled the congress, but the recovery was stunted by the Obama Admin and Democrat controlled congress. The jobs are not there because of their policies in the last 3 1/2 years, that is not Bush.

    • Hey ChocoCat look at the graph. Bush started to turn the economy around late in 2003. It continued to grow until 2007. The Democrats took control of Congress in that election year. They took control because every month the Bush hating media always cried recession, recession, recession. Unemployment was around 4.8% in late 2005. Since 2007 we’ve been in an economic nose dive and Obama doesn’t know how to fly

    • I could care less how many jobs were lost during Bush’s last month. It’s the here and now that matters. It’s the next four years that really matter and the last four, if any indication, aren’t inspiring by any measurement.

    • Jobs were lost in his last month because Obama had been elected! They are “credited” to Bush, but they’re Obama’s. We did a total restructuring of our business in Nov of 2007 as soon as he was elected, and by using subs instead of our own employees went from 78 to 0. On purpose. Because we saw what was coming. So don’t blame that on Bush – if anything, you can blame it on smart small businessmen.

    • Where are the jobs? Ask Obama. After all, he said in early 2009: “You know, a year from now, I think people are going to see that we’re starting to make some progress but there is still going to be some pain out there. If I don’t have this done in three years, then there’s going to be a one-term proposition.”
      Horrendous grammar aside, it appears he means that the economic recovery (or lack thereof) is his responsibility.

    • Yes, it is true that the unemployment rate and monthly job losses were going up steadily in 2008 (see As the year went on it became more and more obvious that Obama was going to win the presidency and people with money started taking it out of their businesses as they could see the handwriting on the wall (I know I did). Watch the investment money come back as soon as Obama loses in November and Obamacare is repealed. Until then I will sit on my T-bills and wait.

    • Bush was the president when the trouble began, but you’ll please notice that the unemployment rate was steady (and low), tax receipts were rising, the GDP was growing, and the deficits were falling until the Democrats took control of Congress in 2006. That’s when the sh!t hit the fan, under the “leadership” of Pelosi and Reid.

    • Sorry – the jobs that were being lost were thanks to the DEMOCRAT-controlled Congress. The Republicans took only the House back in 2010, and ALL of their bills to fix it have been killed in the Senate. 0BAMA and his minions drove the economy off a cliff, and that won’t change until EITHER the Republicans take back the Senate and get veto-proof majorities in both houses, OR take back the Senate and White House straight-up. Nice try. Hey, why is nobody hiring? Because there’s no certainty in the future, and because if they pass a certain number of employees, then *bang* they have to pay for 0bamaKare!

    • The fire was started decades ago. Bush fanned the flames heavily. Now Barry is throwing gasoline on top. Either way we’re going down in a blaze whether you like it or not.

    • When a coach is brought in to fix a losing football program, blaming the prior coaching staff may be ok the first year, maybe the second, but after that…..When is our President going to take responsibility for where we are? It serves no purpose to blame others at this point because it is his job to get us where we need to go. I do not want excuses. We demand results. Shouldn’t we demand results?

      I am also concerned that our President made a really big bet with the stimulus spending and trillion dollar deficits three years in a row. Whether you blame him for where we are today or not, the fact that he has burned through so much cash and our nation is so much farther in debt has not only limited our options while facing a difficult world economy but has has hamstrung us from having a robust recovery.

      The fact that we have not had unemployment this high for so long since the Great Depression should tell you something. The fact that we are in such debt should also tell you something. Even if you are right that President Bush is solely to blame, the fact that our President has not put us on strong enough footing to recover and has dug a really deep financial hole that will take generations to climb out of is enough for me to know he is not the right guy for the job.

    • Blah blah blah blah blame Bush blah blah blah blah blame anyone or anything but Obama.

      Obama has had 3 1/2 years to turn the economy around, as he promised he would. And he hasn’t. In fact, he has made things spectacularly worse. That’s because he and his ilk do not understand how to help foster job growth in the private sector. He is a hardened ideologue full of hubris that has chosen to surround himself with others who are equally inept at understanding business. What he does know how to do is grow the public sector, hand out food stamps and increase people’s dependency on government. They are easier to break that way.

      The bigger clowns than those who didn’t see this coming when voting this buffoon into office, are those who are still refusing to see it. Still blaming Bush. Clowns, all of them.

    • Hey chococat. Bush went before Congress 8 times to try and warn about Fannie and Fred. You can see it on youtube, you leftists saying that there was nothing wrong. Since the Left took over congress in 2006, the decline took on speed. Obama raised the deficit by five thousand billion in his first term. This is not just a bit more than other Presidents, it is phenomenally more. It is unbelievably more. It is a disaster. His unprecedented spending of other people’s earning was meant to “stimulate’ the economy, and it didn’t work. Funny, every single conservative commentator alive said it wouldn’t work before he did it. We were right, as usual, you leftists were wrong.

    • While you are all blaming Bush solely for the recession, I might remind you that 2 of the major causes of the housing collapse, fannie mae, and the community redevelopment act, were both created and supported by dems (like Dodd and Frank), and 2 yrs before the recession both houses of congress (which controlled spending) were controlled by dems. But even if you can get away with falsely blaming Bush solely for the recession, Obama and the dems deserve complete blame for the complete lack of a recovery, once the recession hit bottom. Just look at the chart, if plunged bigtime starting in 2008, continued plunging 2 yrs after Bush was out of office, and since then has just sat there, in complete stagnation with no serious recovery.

    • Everybody knows the financial crash was caused by
      banks forced to loan to people that they knew would never pay the loan back.
      Watch this, then tell me how it was Bush’s fault

    • Oh brother….W. has been out of office how long? And Obama has had how long? With a congress leaning his way?

      Your record is broken. Time for a new song and dance.

    • Those taxes that Obama keep putting on businesses? Those are jobs, what morons don’t understand is that businesses dont pay taxes, they pass it along to consumers. Minimum wages go up, price at McDonalds follows suite.

      In response to Choco cat’s question, the unemployment rate was 8.1 % when Bush left office and gas was 1.85 national average. Since then gas went up to 3.85 and now hovering around 3 bucks, and unemployment is at 8.2%. You can’t keep beating up the money producers and expect them to give up everything for free. Someone has to pay for it all, and Americans are with a recession.

    • ChocoCat – You should turn off npr and msnbc although It might be too late. It’s already given you a mental disorder. You have what is called Bush derangement syndrome. It’s quite common among liberal morons. By the way, it’s Congress that does the heavy lifting when it comes to looting our money/killing the economy. So blaming Bush or even Obama is like blaming your cars muffler for the head lights not working.

    • Is there something wrong with making record profits ? Why should any business plow any “record” profit back into their business with Obama’s regulatory and tax policy. Which soaks everyone except people making less than 30 or 40K per year.

    • When you give poor people a tax break, they just up and spend all of that money. Food. Diapers. Utility bills. American Beer. Rich people, well, give them a tax break, and they tend more to invest in corporations, encouraging these corporations to increase profitability by reducing expenses and sending jobs overseas among other things. Continued tax breaks on the rich at the expense of the poor are a terrible strategy if we wish to create jobs.

    • Profit has absolutely nothing to do with the number of useless employees standing around. If anything, this was a great exercise in cutting expenses to increase profit. That is what business is for. Sounds like you want everything to be “not for profit”. Oh…and just blame Bush. He’s gone now and it doesn’t matter. A true leader never blames his predecessor in any instance. You must own the situation. Take the bad with the good.

    • Dems controlled both houses of Congress after 2006, Barney Frank demanded banks give mortgages to unqualified folks, and it’s Bush’s fault?

    • No I can’t. But, more to the point, let’s compare the “last month” of Bush to “the last 41 months” of Obama.

      And it would only be the pro-big government bureaucracy progressive who cannot understand that business always needs to seek a profit to stay in business. They’ve had to slim down their expenses and firm up their bottom line to adapt to the Obama-generated uncertainties and proposed additional taxes and wealth redistribution imposed by the federal government.

      Too many of us believe that business can follow the government model of continued growth in the number of employees in the midst of reduced demand, lower revenues, greater expenses, and an uncertain future.

      That is an unsustainable and foolish expectation, even for government.

    • Choco cat you are sorely mis guided. The reason for the collapse of the banks and subsequest recession that followed was the housing market, and just who made the bill that made home ownership a right, was Chris Dodd (D) and Bonnie Frank (fag D) the bill was pushed through and W signed it in a bipartisan spirit. Democrats think everybody should own a house but not have to pay for it. People stop paying the mortgages, banks went belly up and the recession was set into motion. Only difference is Obama has done EVERYTHING to make it worse, Reagan did EVERYTING to make it better and the numbers don’t lie. Reagan’s numbers indicate a robust recovery and Obama’s numbers indicate a man way over his head.

    • ChocoDunce – You really need to kick that fermented Kool-Aid addiction. It wasn’t only W’s wimpy Progressive Idiocy that drove us off the cliff, it was the newly resurgent DEMOCRAT CONGRESS his last 2 years that Forced Spending WAY beyond Income and then NEVER Passed a Budget. They STILL Haven’t after 4 more years of Democrat Overspending!

    • Keep sticking to that “Bush’s Fault” mantra. It’s become such a joke that it’s adding to Romney’s numbers.

      At least you’ve stopped blaming Eisenhower.

    • You’re going to compare his last month of his Presidency with Obama’s entire first term? Obama is the one who came onto the scene with his hope and change, he was going to fix everything. Face it, Obama tanked. Hard. Now, he can’t deliver after he gets a taste of how tough it is to be a leader when you aren’t qualified in the first place, and everybody cries “it’s Bush’s fault”!

    • Unemployment under Bush remained in the 4% range through both of his terms idiot. You can pick all you want on the last month in office. But you liberals forget that Bush inherited a Clinton recession and ALSO battled a recession that was brought on by 9-11. Did you forget about all that?

      As for fortune 500 companies making money, you are again an idiot. Fortune 500 companies are not responsible for most American jobs. Small businesses are.

      Go ahead and let the Bush tax expire… Go ahead and push the largest tax increase on Americans through your messiahs God aweful health care plan. Wait until you see the impact two HUGE tax increases have on the economy, you dolt. Have you really thought about this or are you going to remain the glazed eyed sheep you are now?

      Do you seriously believe two HUGE tax increases are going to boost the economy? You are absolutely insane.

      When will you liberal idiots stop blaming Bush for your failure to manage money? When will your messiah finally take responsibility instead of repeating the same tired lines over and over and over again?

      Obama is history this November. Bush wasn’t perfect by any stretch of the imagination. He allowed spending that was anything but conservative. But your O-Failure messiah is an Obamination to the office. Your organizer and chief has ruined our economy, tripled the nation’s debt, and he has no new ideas. Just more of the same liberal tripe that you just typed. you and the pathetic lying liberal horse you rode in on.

    • Unemployment under Bush remained in the 4% range through both of his terms idiot. You can pick all you want on the last month in office. But you liberals forget that Bush inherited a Clinton recession and ALSO battled a recession that was brought on by 9-11. Did you forget about all that?

      As for fortune 500 companies making money, you are again an idiot. Fortune 500 companies are not responsible for most American jobs. Small businesses are.

      Go ahead and let the Bush tax expire… Go ahead and push the largest tax increase on Americans through your messiahs God aweful health care plan. Wait until you see the impact two HUGE tax increases have on the economy, you dolt. Have you really thought about this or are you going to remain the glazed eyed sheep you are now?

      Do you seriously believe two HUGE tax increases are going to boost the economy? You are absolutely insane.

      When will you liberal idiots stop blaming Bush for your failure to manage money? When will your messiah finally take responsibility instead of repeating the same tired lines over and over and over again?

      Obama is history this November. Bush wasn’t perfect by any stretch of the imagination. He allowed spending that was anything but conservative. But your O-Failure messiah is an Obamination to the office. Your organizer and chief has ruined our economy, tripled the nation’s debt, and he has no new ideas. Just more of the same liberal tripe that you just typed.

      F… you and the pathetic lying liberal horse you rode in on.

    • The last TWO years of Bush Pelosi Reid and the Dems where in 100% control of congress that why! Then for the for the FIRST two years of the Unqualified Pres,Obama they where in 100% control even now they have the final say in anything that is done, The Dems are a CROOKED CORRUPT party Holder is in CONTEMPT OBama has to take Ex Priv to cover his lies Pelosi is GUILTY os indider trading. Just see if you can find the Youtube video made before he was in the limelight, on it and I have seen and eard this my self, he says “I WAS BORN IN KENYA” Not to mention the book that says the same thing and his OWN grandmother before she died said she was in KENYA when Obama was BORN . WHY ARETHE AMERICAN PEOPLE so GUILLABLE and WHY DO THEY PUT UP WITH THIS? SOMEONE EXPLAIN THIS PLEASE

    • You cant admit your canidate is a failure and have to blame someone who has been gone for over 3 1/2 years. Obama was only elected because people wanted to make history and overlooked his total lack of experience. And your right the fortune 500 make a fortune and hired nobody, another reason to dump Obama since nobody has confidience in him and wants to take a chance and spend money.

    • The job creation is on the front end of the spectrum–the early stages of production. I was hired by one of those Fortune 500 companies myself; the unemployment rate among college grads with STEM degrees is exceptionally low. If all you learned how to do was swing a hammer in the Housing Bubble, then you better get off unemployment and learn how to swing a spatula. . . or learn how to do something the labor market actually demands because those construction jobs aren’t coming back any time soon.

    • You’re correct the market was doing bad in Bush’s last month as a President. This is because everyone in business was bracing themselves for the cataclysmic and unrelenting business climate that is Obama.

    • Oh, please. There wasn’t a SINGLE BUSH POLICY that was causal in the financial crisis, which was a burst of an HOUSING ASSET BASED BUBBLE caused by loose credit policies both in the public companies in the mortgage business AND the GOVERNMENT UNDERWRITERS of those mortgages.


    • Oh, and YEA. There are record profits because businesses have been taking advantage of the soft labor market by loading down existing employees with more work. As long as the market is soft and they are able to meet demand, there is no reason for them to hire.

      Increased profits don’t lead to more hiring. Why would anybody think they would?

    • Sadly, this falls on closed ears with these nitwits..I’m caucasian, all this pointing at Barry is racially motivated!!!

    • You know what was great about Reagan (besides everything)? It’s that he didn’t spend 3 1/2 years blaming Carter.

      Of course he also didn’t have the luxury of a filibuster proof majority either.

      Hope & Change

    • if you look at that chart again, you can see that the Obama administration predicted the economy would have been better off if they had done nothing at all. :)

    • It’s Bush’s fault, it’s Bush’s fault, it’sBush’s fault! Is that the only thing the libs can come up with? Too bad, because it’s gotten worse than boring! Obummer has been such a failure because of Bush! Couldn’t have anything to do with his inexperience, never having had a job or earned a living! Couldn’t have anything to do with BO’s inability to tell the truth about anything at all! Couldn’t have anything to do with his ineptness to see anyone or anything but himself! And it couldn’t have anything to do with his top advisors being his wife and Valerie Jarret. Of all the people that needs expert advice, and he turns to those two. No wonder our country is falling apart. My recently graduated nephew, with his PHD, is as qualified as BO, maybe more ……………wouldn’t take much for that!
      Now…..if you can’t think of anything better than “it’s Bush’s fault”, don’t say anything………you sound stupid!

    • Chococat, apparently you’ve forgotten that it was the Dems that took over the Congress in 2007. We’ve been going downhill since!

      BTW, the unemployment rate noted in the graph, without the stimulus, is purely speculation. The unemployment rate with the stimulus, is actual!

    • Please, enlighten me. How exactly did Bush drive the economy off the cliff? What did he have to do with the housing crisis? If it was his tax cuts, why are they still here..after dems had congress, the senate, and the presidency.

      So please enlighten me with the details besides……..nobody is hiring. Are you hiring? Why not?

    • ChocoCat . . how many jobs were lost during W last month? Per BLS Unemployment Rate was 4.7 in November 2007 when your candidate got elected. In December 2007 it went up to 5.0 and stayed relatively flat until April 2008 and that’s when it shot up. I’m sorry you are unaware that Congress makes the law, and the President signs it, then it’s enacted. During 2007 there was a Democrat led Congress and has been ever since.

    • The left battle cry “its bush’s fault”. Tell me how exactly is the fact that our country goes in recession atleast once every decade bushes fault ? tell me how the bush era tax cuts that gave a tax breaks to most taxpayers not just the rich like the left would want you to beleive cause a collapse in property values ? the left wants to scream all day how bush ruined this country while throwing in some buzz words for the uneducated to rally around but can’t seem to ever site statistics to confirm their beleifs. The fact is bush not only didn’t cause the recession but he actually saved us from economic disaster in his first term when we watched the destruction of the two largest financial instatutions in the county, while we simaltaneously whatched the dot com bubble burst before our eyes. Not only did this cause barley a hick up in the markets but we continued to show remarkable growth for the majority of his 2 terms. I will by no means tell you that bush was the best president or even an above average one but lets focus on the facts and his true failed policies rather then continue to spout off an ignorance on wars thats bankrupted our country ( they didn’t including both wars and all foreign aid was less then 10% of the annual budgets) and bush era tash cuts wich reduced taxes on nearly all americans. While we’ve all seen how catchy the “its bush’s fault” mantra can be to the undereducated and less then impartial public its failed to produce any reasonable talking points to back up the claim.

    • Your statements are as silly as they are “quasi” accurate, or partially to completely false.

      Bush didn’t drive anything – the President does not have the power to spend tax dollars, only Congress does. The last 2 years of the Bush Presidency, DEMOCRATS had 100% control of the House and Senate. This is where we fell “off the cliff”. Just look at what they did to our economy if you have the guts. Look at their spending. Look at the bills they passed.

      And of course “some” Fortune 500 companies made record profits, this happens EVERY YEAR. Not all, but SOME. You need to learn that sweeping generalizations are as good as lies, just listen to our idiot President.

      Where are the jobs? Where is the demand for products? Consumers are scared to death of what government is going to do to them next. Obama and the Democrats in Congress have held our nation hostage for 3.5 years and counting, demanding 100% of their desires or they do nothing. The ONLY bills that pass are the one’s they bully Republicans into signing.

      Remember the fool you voted for who promised to mend fences, to do the right thing and work across party lines? Leaders lead, Obama has lied, blamed, called names, demanded, and said juvenile things that no real leader would ever say. Things like “I won”, and “sit in the back”. He is a fool, and this report shows him to be exactly that.

    • You obviously don’t understand basic economics. I haven’t checked the stats, so let’s take you at your word…companies could be making record profits at every level, but that doesn’t mean they’re somehow hiding all that money away. Obama has been terrible in terms of confidence. No business owner knows what the hell next year will bring (recall Obama and his dems haven’t passed a budget in what- 1100 days?) Businesses know that taxes will soon shoot up, and basic econ fundamentals tell us that people see future tax increases and stop new spending (hiring) NOW to compensate for it. The tens of millions in new Obamacare taxes are just the tip of the iceberg, can you honestly blame them for not adding tons of new workers?

      As for Bush, he was not perfect, but he drove us off the fiscal cliff? How so? I assume you mean the tax cuts? Those very same tax cuts allowed a massive terrorist attack on the country to be but a minor economic blip.

    • go back to your car & roll the windows up. how high are you. you just have to ask yourself one thing: are we better off now than we were 3.5 years ago? look at the charts, I’d say no. there’s no driver in the car now & that’s really scary. enough with the cute little stories, let’s get someone in there with some business sense.

    • Oh and by definition the Fortune 500 will do well by definition of being the top 500 performing companies that year, changing each year.

      If you look at the facts you will see their US profits are under performing with emerging markets driving their growth, or they run on government subsidies like the fifth to ninth companies Fannie Mae, GE, Berkshire, GM, and BoA.

      Concerning the Bush tax cuts, which were enacted in 2000 before Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac fraud became public, unemployment was about 4.7 % to 6.0% with increasing energy prices. Obama has been given the gift of shale drilling which should be as large as the digital revolution but he wants to have energy executives crucified and run the country on algae. The Bush tax cuts true cost were $20 billion, compared to Obama’s $900 billion stimulus and $1.7 trillion healthcare law. You only get to the extreme numbers if you take the same economy and apply the same high tax rates over ten years.

    • Missy, GWB has been out of office for three & a half years…

      Now if you wanna debate what Obozo promised & has failed to deliver in the past three & a half years like cutting the budget deficit in HALF, preventing the unemployment rate from rising above 8% & not raising taxes on the Middle Class then you just let us know.

      But this continuous B.S. of bringing up GWB just won’t fly anymore…Obozo has a record now & HE MUST DEFEND HIS FAILING RECORD…Comprende?

      The jacka$$ has definitely proven to be the appropriate mascot for the Democrat party.

      NOBAMA 2012

    • Too bad your side doesn’t admit the last two years of Bush where the chaos really started, the House and Senate were controlled by the left and passed bills that helped this problem grow even worse. But then again, the left will never take responsibility for their screwups.

    • There are no jobs and there will be no jobs as long as Obama continues to tax the small business owners so heavily. They will not hire now that they are forced to provide healthcare benefits. Small business is where most job growth comes. You can kiss it all goodbye as long as he continues his tax and spend strategy.

    • B.S, Bush’s problem was he tried to placate the liberal tax and spend members of the House and Senate in 2007. Obama has been a FAILURE from the moment he entered office. Your messiah had complete control of the House ,Senate and executive branch of the government and couldn’t accomplish shit to turn things arround.

    • Choco Cat,
      The profits are there yes, but the anal rape that will begin in 2013 with tax increases, are where the profits will be going to if Obysmal gets re-elected. In 2007 pelosi reid and obama stepped on the gas and drove that car over the cliff. Your policies have never worked on the face of the earth in the history of the earth.

  3. If the administration simply stops counting all the people, he can stand up there and tell everyone how he lowered the unemployment rate without adding a new job. These numbers are a joke and he should be exposed for the fraud that he is.

  4. The ever present tendency to frame assessments of the economy in partisan terms is not helpful. There are many currents impacting our economy that are far more important than “who rules”. Some “non-partisan” considerations, as also noted in Pethokoukis’ article, include:
    [1] Global Economics. We’re in a global economy, and its impacts are major. We live in a world of outsourcing, trade deficits, piracy of intellectual property, and interdependent market demand. We are far less insulated from global economic conditions than we were even 20 years ago.
    [2] Uncertainty. The lack of some measure of a predictable future in multiple areas undercuts investment and business expansion. At a national level, this has always been evident in a Presidential election year. Today’s almost total political polarization increases uncertainty. We don’t know what the rules are, and we can’t make decisions. At the federal level, the minority can black most major actions or inactions. Politicians need to compromise and the public needs to understand and support compromises. In passing, one-sixth of our economy, health services, has been in limbo for almost 3 years. Whatever the public policy, knowing the rules, would allow forward motion.
    [3] Lack of Small Business Growth. Small business has always been the primary source of new jobs. Uncertainty and unavailability of capital loans has greatly undercut growth in this area.
    [4] Government Regulation and ACA. In terms of facts, what is the reality here? What regulations are hurting or helping job creation [i.e. environmental laws, payroll tax cut, ACA]. There are a lot of ideological commentaries, but very little in the way of facts or fact-based extrapolations. Further, there are credible fact-based assessments that support opposite points of view. I honestly do not see any convincing evidence that “government regulation” is strangling the economy. Please put forth any empirical assessments, not opinions.
    [5] Macroeconomic Policy and Deficit. No one, even most far leftists, dismisses the deficit. At the same time, macroeconomic data tends to support some form Keynesian “pump priming” [this is a commonality of both the Bush and Obama administrations]. Truly, it’s not a matter of yes or no, but of level and strategic focus. There are dozens of Nobel Laureate on all sides of this issue. For reasons of stability [See Comment 2 Above] as much as hard economic impact, we would probably be best off by pursuing a middle of the road policy. However, this would require some level of balance and compromise.
    [6] Recovery from Massive Damage. Last, and not least, is that we are recovering from a massive economic crisis, a crisis far more systematic and severe than the 1980 recession. A recent Federal Reserve study documents that the average American household lost 39 percent of its wealth. Considering the damage to hard assets and consumer confidence, it is not surprising that our recovery is slow. A lot of businesses and a lot of people are making fundamental adjustments.
    All in all, we are clearly at some type of crossroads concerning the role of government. Unfortunately, this debate is taking place at some type of stratospheric ideological level that is divorced from the historic American pragmatism that has guided us safely between the extremes of left and right for 236 years.
    When we discuss these issues, let’s be real. There are very, very few real “socialists” in the American population. Does anyone actually know a real person who wants to do away with a market-based economy? On the other side, there aren’t many Americans that seriously believe that Government does not produce anything of value with the taxes it collects. While there are reasonable disagreements about the amount, appropriateness and cost-effectiveness of public undertakings, can one seriously argue that roads, schools, police, national defense and parks have no value?
    The debate on general economic policy, and the correct balance between the “mixed economy” [not "socialist"] and laissez faire will always continue. We would all do well to keep the debate civil and fact-based. If we going to pull this nation back together, that re-forges our society so that all are productive and all are awarded appropriately, let’s discuss facts and practical tradeoffs.

  5. Don’t be stupid, chocfullcat!! What drove the economy off the cliff was Dodd and Frank forcing Fannie and Freddie to make sure every American who wanted a home could get a home – and made those nasty baniks stop checking for nasty discriminatory credit worthiness. Ever hear of the Housing Crisis, you idiot?

  6. Two interesting bits of news. 80,000 jobs created and 85,000 people applied for Social Security Disability. Do you think there’s a connection?

    Also, seems Obama and his FHA are plotting to sell off foreclosed homes for pennies on the dollar to venture capitalists leaving ordinary citizens out of the loop. Seems unless you are the likes of Warren Buffet and his ilk you cannot bid on a foreclosed home to live in, rent or flip. Why is Obama excluding ordinary citizens? I suppose we’re not giving enough $$ to Obama’s secret accounts off shore? To heck with his campaign funds, he wants a direct deposit to his accounts in the Caymans. Will Obama and the Democrats get away with this as well?

  7. I have Doctorate in Law and a Bachelors in Applied Economics from Cornell. We are in a depression, not a recession. Whoever you want to blame for starting the mess, and the factors are many, the current administration has failed to fix it. It is time to try a new approach. Obama is trying his same approach. Perhaps he should try something different before the elction if he would like 4 more years.

  8. When are they going to realize that “Stimulating” the economy doesn’t work. You give tax breaks to a company so they can hire more.

    • ” You give tax breaks to a company so they can hire more.”

      Over one third of the hated “stimulus” was in tax breaks, many geared toward this very companies.

      How can so much ignorance exist in the information age? Is it because some folks spread disinformation to take advantage of the gullible?

      Can’t imagine how much money would be in that endeavor. What’d Rush clear last year?

  9. Don’t both me with these facts, it’s Bush’s fault. Don’t you know that, stupid?


    Barry H. Soetoro Obama

  10. The unemployment rate IS at 5.6%. Obama just didn’t say it would be in Washington D.C. due to massive redistribution of wealth from the productive parts of the country to the leech part of the country.

    Well done, Mr. O.

  11. ChocoCat – You miss the entire point for the article. Obama’s own administration said that IF the stimulus package was enacted WE would NOT be at >8% unemployment. We would be at only 5.6%.

    Quit the blame game on the past administration. We are not where Obama said we would be under his policies. He owns the economy now after 3 years in office. Enough is enough already.
    Think We can do better.

  12. Maybe Lefty CNBC & MSNBC – business division – and MSN is changing after reading all the comments posted – likely 80% against Stinky B.O. the last month or so on their articles. Even MSN on-line polls show the truth. Same comment for yahoo website.
    Contrast in famous quotes:
    Famous Founder:
    “A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have. ” –Thomas Jefferson
    Famous Community Organizer:
    “I kept playing basketball, attended classes sparingly, drank beer heavily, and tried drugs enthusiastically.” ~ Barack Hussein Obama (Dreams From My Father)

  13. The problem for the left is that it goes against human nature. The problem for the right is that it goes against the leftest media. The problem for the unemployed is that no one will tell them the truth about how the left only cares about being in power and the right has to compromise to get elected forciing them to do things that are bad for the economy such as G.W. Bush did.

  14. Obama “caring” about jobless numbers is all an act. His mission, pure and simple, is to get the chess pieces in place for the absolute financial armegeddon. He is a Kenyan-born communist, quite possible the blood descendant of Stanley Dunham and Frank Davis (not B. Obama “Sr.”). Everything he says is to obfuscate and tittilate the his “masses”. Everything he does is to bring the wreckage. Since he’s Islamic, his view is 50 years from now for this nation to be a colony of Saudi Arabia. Sorry folks, that’s what the evidence says. You never should have believed CNN.

  15. Neither Romney or Obama can bring back the jobs because the government (state, city, county & feds) has trillions in pension funds backing outsourcing… So, anything these two say is a lie.

    Our own tax dollars have be leveraged against the working class and small business and we have become no long relevant… Reign in these pension funds and return the excess to the people. You think Obama or Romney will do that? Don’t hold your breath!

  16. hahahahhahah, I can’t not believe that after three and half years some people blame Bush for the cretin in the White House…- Job growth during the three-year Obama recovery has averaged just 75,000 a month for a total of 2.7 million. During the first three years of the Reagan Recovery, job growth averaged 273,000 a month for a total of 9.8 million. If you adjust for the larger U.S. population today, the Reagan Recovery averaged 360,000 jobs a month for a three-year total of 13 million jobs.-.
    Barry Soetoro aka Barack Hussein Obama is an incompetent community agitator.

  17. I distinctly remember comrad president Obama stating in
    2008 that if he hasen’t fixed the economy within three years,he should resign!I guess that was among the very
    first of a long litany of well documented lies told by the
    commander in grief

    • I distinctly remember losing 800,000 jobs a month, with GPD shrinking steadily when he took office.

      Changing a negative to a positive is a good thing, even if the positive isn’t positive enough for you personally (because of your hatred for the President).

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