May Jobs Report: Dismal, Disappointing, See Also Disastrous

It's another bad jobs report for May, and time once again to wonder how much slower this economy can get.

I noted yesterday that there were plenty of signals that the May jobs report was going to be disappointing, ranging from disappointing GDP growth in the First Quarter, an ADP report that was way off expectations, and indications that major corporations were ramping up plans for layoffs going into the summer. We also had a disappointing jobs report in April that indicated the job growth we’d seen starting back in December was not going to sustain itself into the spring. Going into this morning, the consensus forecast had been for at least 150,000 net jobs created and a drop in the unemployment rate to 8.0% from 8.1%, but by yesterday afternoon there were already indications that analysts and traders on Wall Street were preparing for bad news this morning. As it turns out, they were wise to do so, because today the Bureau Of Labor Statistics released the worst jobs report in a year:

Nonfarm payroll employment changed little in May (+69,000), and the unemployment rate was essentially unchanged at 8.2 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment increased in health care, transportation and warehousing, and wholesale trade but declined in construction. Employment was little changed in most other major industries.

(…)

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks and over) rose from 5.1 to 5.4 million in May. These individuals accounted for 42.8 percent of the unemployed. (See table A-12.)

The civilian labor force participation rate increased in May by 0.2 percentage point to 63.8 percent, offsetting a decline of the same amount in April. The employment- population ratio edged up to 58.6 percent in May. (See table A-1.)

The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) edged up to 8.1 million over the month. These individuals were working part time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job. (See table A-8.)

This was, in other words, a dismal report with no significantly good news in it. In addition to the disappointing numbers for May, we also learned that job growth in previous months was far weaker than it had appeared to be. March’s job growth, originally reported at 154,000 net jobs created, was revised downward to 143,000 jobs created. April’s number, which had clocked in at a disappointing 115,000 net jobs created, were cut back to an even worse 77,000 jobs. All of this leaves one with the clear indication that, as other economic statistics have suggested, the economy has slowed down significantly since the winter when it seemed, once again, like we were picking up steam. Of course, we’ve seen this pattern before in each of the last two years so it shouldn’t be that much of a surprise. The question is whether this pattern continues and leads us into another sluggish summer, and CNBC thinks the answer is yes:

The American jobs engine hit stall speed in May, with the economy adding just 69,000 new jobs while the unemployment rate climbed to 8.2 percent.

As another summertime swoon looms, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that job creation missed economist estimates for 158,000 new positions, and said labor force participation remains near 30-year lows though incrementally better than last month.

The unemployment rate that counts discouraged workers rose as well, swelling to 14.8 percent.

In May, stocks suffered through their worst month in two years, and the job-creation figures only added to the gloom.

Stock market futures indicated a sharply lower open for Wall Street, while investors continued to pour into bonds, sending the 10-year Treasury note yield tumbling to near 1.47 percent.

Getting back to the report, there really wasn’t any sector of the economy that did well last month, although some did far worse than others:

Health care employment continued to increase in May (+33,000). Within the industry, employment in ambulatory health care services, which includes offices of physicians
and outpatient care centers, rose by 23,000 over the month. Over the year, health care employment has risen by 340,000.

Transportation and warehousing added 36,000 jobs over the month. Employment gains in transit and ground passenger transportation (+20,000) and in couriers and messengers  (+5,000) followed job losses in those industries in April. Employment in both industries  has shown little net change over the year. In May, truck transportation added 7,000 jobs.

Employment in wholesale trade rose by 16,000 over the month. Since reaching an employment low in May 2010, this industry has added 184,000 jobs.

Manufacturing employment continued to trend up in May (+12,000) following a similar change in April (+9,000). Job gains averaged 41,000 per month in the first quarter of this year. In May, employment rose in fabricated metal products (+6,000) and in primary metals (+4,000). Since its most recent low in January 2010, manufacturing employment has increased by 495,000.

Construction employment declined by 28,000 in May, with job losses occurring in specialty trade contractors (-18,000) and in heavy and civil engineering construction (-11,000). Since reaching a low in January 2011, employment in construction has shown little change on net.

Average monthly job growth in the First Quarter of 2012 was a net gain of 226,000 new jobs. So far in the Second Quarter, the average net gain is a paltry 73,000 jobs, meaning that, even if we end up with 150,000 or so jobs created in June, average job growth this quarter, and presumably economic growth itself, is going to be far below what it was at the beginning of the year.  As Jared Bernstein notes, none of this bodes well for the economy as a whole, both for the rest of the year and heading into 2013:

As it looks today, the job market is simply not providing workers with the employment and earnings opportunities they need to get ahead.  This has obvious negative implications for family budgets, but it also threatens the macro-economy.  If this pace of job growth sticks, the economy will slow down from a growth rate that’s already too slow.

So, will it stick?  It’s always possible with these monthly reports that some statistical anomalies are in play.  A candidate in this case is weather effects, as unseasonably warm weather last winter probably moved job growth that might have occurred in May to earlier months.

If so, that would imply that taking an average of more months of data would give you a more accurate read on the true underlying pace of growth.  Over the last six months, net monthly job gains have been 174,000, so a lot depends on whether the current weak trend persists.

However, while one month does not a trend make, three months do.  Also, slower job growth is consistent with a number of indicators that slowed in May, along with Europe and fiscal uncertainty regarding the fiscal cliff.

The more immediate concern that many will focus on, of course, will be the impact that these numbers have on the Presidential race. After today, there will only be five more unemployment reports released before Election Day 2012. Quite obviously, another series of dismal jobs reports like we had through the summer months last year would be bad news for the Obama campaign and Democrats in general, and would play right into the Romney campaign’s strategy of arguing that the President has failed to put in place policies that can lead the nation into a recovery that will actually start putting the vast majority of unemployment Americans back to work. Of course, nobody can know where these numbers are going to go over the next five months. Given the relatively sluggish economy and the economic uncertainty sweeping the world right now, it’s probably a safe bet that June’s numbers aren’t going to be much better than what we saw in April or March, and that poses the danger of setting in place a mentality that the economy is indeed slowing down again, causing people to cut back on spending and businesses to cut back on investment. In some sense, then, we’re at a point where thinking that the economy is slowing down will, in essence, become a self-fulfilling prophecy and, if you’re unemployed right now, that’s not good news at all.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2012, Economics and Business, US Politics
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Jeremy says:

    Of course. They always blame the weather. #smh

  2. Hey Norm says:

    FYI 69,000 private sector jobs is 10 f’ing times the average monthly private sector jobs added under Bush 43. 10 times. A factor of 10. Maybe that word…”disasterous”…doesn’t mean what you think it means.

    Once again Government hiring was flat. Maybe electing Romney so that the Republicans become Keynesians again, as they always are when in power, would be the best thing for the country.
    http://www.epi.org/publication/public-sector-job-losses-unprecedented-drag/

  3. rodney dill says:

    SSDD

  4. @Hey Norm:

    George W. Bush isn’t running for President

  5. You should really do charts. These three at Calculated Risk put these numbers in the context:

    May Employment Report: 69,000 Jobs, 8.2% Unemployment Rate

    They are more a continuation of trend than a break from it. Not good, but only “dismal’ if this whole year has been “dismal.”

    (Schadenfreude is pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others. This German word is used as a loanword in English and some other languages, and has been calqued in Danish and Norwegian as skadefryd and in Swedish as skadeglädje and Finnish as vahingonilo.)

    If this isn’t just schadenfreude though, and a hope that Republicans have successfully blocked Congress and created a path to victory through despair … talk about what you’d actually do to improve the economy.

    Go ahead, name a fix the GOP has not already opposed. I dare you.

  6. rodney dill says:

    @john personna:

    Go ahead, name a fix the GOP has not already opposed. I dare you.

    Replacing Obama.

    (OK, that was tongue-in-cheek)

  7. @rodney dill:

    Right, but I honestly look back at things like the debt limit crisis, the rejection of the grand bargain, etc., and think … what if they are actually rewarded for these things?

    Doug might be exercising some schadenfreude, but we should hope that no one in congress blocked a bill because they thought it might help. I fear though, that isn’t so.

    Or at least, the GOP thought they could hold the course, and allow no real changes until they were in charge.

  8. Hey Norm says:

    @ Doug…
    No, you are correct, he’s not.
    But you keep shoveling doom and gloom…as JP points out…taking pleasure in misfortune.
    Yet I’ll bet you can’t name a similar economy that has dug our of a similar hole any faster. In other words there is no historical indication that anything should be any different.
    Yeah, it was a weak month, or couple months. However, the trajectory of this recovery is right about where it should be…especially considering the massive (over 5%) swing in public sector employment to the negative. That’s something you are in favor of…right? So you should be enthusiastic about these numbers.
    In terms of the choice in November…no one can point to anything Romney has proposed that will change anything. Except…as I said above…should Republicans regain control they will return to their profligate spending and growing of Government. And that may be the best thing that can happen.

  9. PJ says:

    @john personna:
    @Hey Norm:
    It’s rather obvious that both sides do it, those blaming just the Republicans are all drum circle participating partisan hippie hacks.

  10. jan says:

    @john personna:

    Opposing raising the debt limit was something Obama did himself, before he became president. As for the ‘grand bargain,’ the rest of the story was that it was rejected because Obama changed the terms at the last minute. You will refute this, of course. But, no matter how that ‘Grand Bargain’ came down, why didn’t Obama get into the trenches again. It is widely known that he is aloof, distant and not really a part of the budgetary process. His energy seems to be saved for campaigning, going on another 6 fundraisers today. His claim to fame, when all this is over, is not bringing the country out of deficits, but having the most fundraisers of any president.

    As for job obstruction, it is the dems, themselves, who sit passively on the side refusing to take up legislation already passed in the house.

    “We have passed 30 bills in the House that would help get our economy moving again. Twenty-seven of them are sitting over in the United States Senate,” Boehner said. “What the president could do … would be to work with us to lean on the Senate to take up these bills.”

    …and then there are the two budgets Obama submitted that were summarily rejected by everyone, including all members of his own party! How can you explain that away? At least the House had the balls to pass Ryan’s budget, which could have gone to the Senate, if not blocked by Reid, and been argued, changed and voted on there.

    Some of you are so hyper partisan, though, that it is literally blinding your ability to see the entire picture clearly.

    As a sidebar to some of the rhetoric here, the Bain attacks are going nowhere fast. Even Bill Clinton had this to say about Romney: Clinton: Romney’s business record stering.

    The man you continue to embrace has no business acumen, and it has been demonstrated, time and time again, with his poor policies, budgets (and non-budgets), ability to get along with Congress, his own failed tax-payer investments, etc, and yet you keep going back to a former President as the scapegoat for all these Obama-generated problems.

  11. Hey Norm says:

    @ jAN…
    Remind me again…when exactly did the Nation’s credit rating of the nation drop during Obama’s time in the Senate?

  12. slimslowslider says:

    @jan:

    Some of you are so hyper partisan, though, that it is literally blinding your ability to see the entire picture clearly.

    jan, i not only love you, i am in love with you.

  13. Hey Norm says:

    Jan lies about the “Grand Bargain”…qoutes John Boehner talking about fictional “Jobs Bills”…lies about an Obama budget being rejected…and then accuses others of being hyper-partisan.
    You really can’t make it up.

  14. Mikey says:

    lies about an Obama budget being rejected

    Senate rejects Obama budget in 99-0 vote

  15. jan says:

    Norm,

    Obama’s time in the Senate was so short, not noteworthy and has nothing to do with the discussion at hand. The credit rating, though, did drop on Obama’s watch as POTUS, and that is relevant as to how his policies were either helping or hindering the country in it’s fiscal shortfalls. Some of the reasons cited were that the debt crisis was not being addressed. The Republican House contentiousness, towards raising the debt ceiling, was founded in the democrat’s refusal to deal with spending cuts. The ideological divide is that Republicans feel we have a spending problem, not a revenue one, while the dems think just the opposite.

  16. jan says:

    Mikey,

    Thanks for that link. I thought everyone knew about Obama’s terrible budgets. However, when you’re so immersed in going left, reality is oftentimes missed altogether.

  17. jan says:

    What happens when a state no longer forces workers into a union?

    Wisconsin membership in the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees—the state’s second-largest public-sector union after the National Education Association, which represents teachers—fell to 28,745 in February from 62,818 in March 2011, according to a person who has viewed Afscme’s figures. A spokesman for Afscme declined to comment.

    Much of that decline came from Afscme Council 24, which represents Wisconsin state workers, whose membership plunged by two-thirds to 7,100 from 22,300 last year.

    Unions prosper when they can coerce and control. However, when choice is injected into the equation there oftentimes are dramatic shifts, as to membership inclination. But, again, that is how social progressives operate: more laws, regulations, pushing wedge issues like class and race warfare, discouraging social capital among people, while encouraging helplessness, furthering the need for big government programs.

  18. @jan:

    Did you answer the tough question? What do Republicans have to offer on jobs?

    We know what we can call the Meg Whitman shuffle. She ran on jobs, when she campaigned for the California governorship. She said “eliminate capital gains and they will come.” Now that she’s back at HP she’s cutting 30,000 of them. Gosh, she’s getting even.

    Consider that though. The economy gained 69,000 jobs in a month. HP is cutting 30,000 on its own.

    Don’t tell me you still believe the GOP pledge, “cut our taxes and we’ll give you jobs … except, oops, that’s not our responsibility.”

  19. (The HP business model was very much damaged by cheap Asian competition. It’s a classic case where US taxes are not the limiting factor. It’s very much an example of misdirection. Globalization is not on anyone’s agenda in 2012.)

  20. Hey Norm says:

    Jan,
    You are the one that brought up Obama’s time in the Senate.
    Now you say it has nothing to do with the discussion at hand.
    WTF???
    Buy a dog, name it Clue, then you will have one.

  21. Hey Norm says:

    Jan is glad that the Wisconsin teachers Union has shrunk…but is unable to grasp that it is because of all the teachers that have been laid off in Wisconsin.
    What a ditz.

  22. jan says:

    I believe that Meg Whitman would have done a better job with CA than Jerry Brown is doing at the moment.

    As far as cutting jobs at HP —> if a business is not doing well, how do you support workers? Job cutting is related not only to how one manages their business, but also to the business climate around them — business regulations etc. Government unpredictability, increasing buracracies and regulation, taxation all play into the reasons why business either grows, fails, goes overseas, moves out of state, or does whatever it has to do to stay in business. I don’t know the particulars of HP, except that it has been not doing well for some time. And, to use this as a prime example of republicans not being able to create jobs is flimsy, at best. Whitman is not cutting jobs as a republican governor, but as a business move in one company — the reasons being subject to trying to keep HP afloat.

  23. PJ says:

    We all know what a Republican President and a Republican Congress did with the surplus left by Clinton, can’t wait to see what they will do to this economy.

    In anticipation of that, how do you short sell the US?

  24. jan says:

    @Hey Norm:

    Wrong again, Norm. Because of Walker’s reforms, many teacher jobs have been saved, as their health insurance costs have decreased because of competitive pricing being a part of the process now. Property taxes have also gone down for the first time in 12 years. The deficit is decreasing, with prospects of creating a ‘rainy day’ fund.

  25. @jan:

    My central question was emphasized twice, what do Republicans offer?

    Related:

    A number of economists this morning haven’t even tried to paint rosy pictures of the unemployment report, with most of them blaming the increased uncertainty in Europe as a reason why employers aren’t hiring.

    If this number is indeed Europe-related, what can any US politician do?

  26. Drew says:

    Go ahead, name a fix the GOP has not already opposed. I dare you.

    An energy policy designed at reducing costs through domestic production. It will benefit manufacturing and the consumer.

    Wind mills and solar cells are a pipe dream.

    Next.

  27. @Drew:

    Republicans in Texas like wind mills and solar just fine …

    But on the other, you do understand that fossil fuels enjoy net subsidy by the US federal government right?

    When you say “an energy policy designed at reducing costs through domestic production” are you asking for bigger subsidies?

    Progressive lawmakers Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) teamed up on Thursday to introduce legislation designed to stop subsidies to the oil, coal and natural gas industries, preserving an estimated $110 billion over the next ten years.

    I guess you’d want to keep those?

  28. @Drew:

    Also:

    Hydraulic Fracturing Companies Setting the Stage for a New Domestic Oil Rush

    I get the idea that some on the right “baked in” their ideas about oil production 5 or 10 years ago, and haven’t kept up.

  29. Rob in CT says:

    @Drew:

    Drill baby drill, eh? Which is different from what we’re doing now, how? Any difference would be so tiny as to be practically invisible. And that’s w/o addressing environmental impact.

    The natural gas boom is underway, and the Dems haven’t stopped it. Indeed, it’s helped some with energy prices. Hurray and all that. But we simply do not have the domestic reserves of (cheap-to-produce) oil required to put a dent in oil prices. Seems to me that’s the pipe dream.

    As for Doug’s post, I’d quibble with “disasterous” but disappointing fits fine. The whole recovery has been disappointingly slow/weak. And, while I was and am pro-stimulus, I don’t think even a bigger one would’ve made everything ok (would’ve helped unemployment some, and I’m for that). We’re up against some things that are tough nuts to crack: energy being high up the list. Seems to me that if the economy were to get going, we’d run smack into higher oil prices, which would slow it right back down again. But again: domestic production isn’t going to help that. We’re staring down peak cheap oil. There’s more oil out there, sure, but it’s hard to get and thus expensive. We’re not going back to $2/gallon gas, ever.

  30. @Rob in CT:

    FWIW, China pays the same world price to import oil that we do. They benefit simply because they are behind. Newly opened economies can pay low wages while improving standard of living. No wealthy nation can do that. There (here) a low wage is a net reduction in GDP.

    Globalization before oil.

  31. Rob in CT says:

    Well, um, yeah. I wasn’t talking about China, because China is in a fundamentally different spot. They’re still playing catch-up from waaaaaaaaay behind. We’re a developed nation. Nobody expects Chinese growth rates here, nor do we need them.

    As for globalization… what are you arguing for on that score? I’m curious, because I agree globalization has put a lot of pressure on US labor. Do you have a plan? Some sort of “fair trade” policy? I’m skeptical…

  32. James says:

    @jan:

    As for the ‘grand bargain,’ the rest of the story was that it was rejected because Obama changed the terms at the last minute. You will refute this, of course.

    Because you’re lying.

  33. @Rob in CT:

    Well, my main point would just be an observation. This is a jobs report and politics thread, and as has often been the case in an election year, focus was made on domestic policy. Republicans argue lower taxes and lower entitlement spending will stimulate jobs. Democrats say that fast trains and green energy will do it.

    I don’t see either as effective.

    (My proposal in the past has been a low but uniform duty on all imported goods, something on the order of 2 to 5%. That is far short of the 19.8% Smoot–Hawley levels that burned us and left such an aversion to tariff. I believe that current duties net out to about 2%, but are non-uniform, and favor some industries over others.)

  34. Rob in CT says:

    Agreed, particularly wrt HSR. I’m just not a believer in passenger rail in the USA, outside of a few very specific spots.

    “Green energy” depends on technological developments in the coming years. If we did manage to sort out significantly more efficient batteries, that would be a game-changer for cars. But that’s been chased for some time w/o success. I figure public investment in research along such lines is money well spent.

    Anyway, globalisation… so you’re proposing mild protectionism. Ok, assume that other nations reciprocate in kind. Is that helpful?

  35. anjin-san says:

    @ Jan

    You have been ducking this question for a while, but I will try again. If you could magically turn the economy back to where it was on Bush’s last day in office, would you?

    Yes or no?

    It should be an easy one to answer – you can go back to the Bush economy – back before Obama messed things up.

  36. @Rob in CT:

    I’m not sure my 2 to 5% is above what other nations do. Consider Japan.

    Oh, and we just slapped a “13 to 26” percent tariff on Chinese solar panels. I’m actually suggesting that we stop doing that, unilaterally.

    Even at 5% they’d all be selling us a lot of stuff, and we’d be skimming it to pay our taxes. We’d actually be shifting the tax burden from US companies (Jan and Drew) to foreigners.

  37. Here’s a short PDF with selected tariffs by country (2002).

    It says we have 4% manufactures, 9.1% textiles, and 11.4% clothing. That leaves out food, oil, etc.

    Interestingly it says China has 9.6%, 9.7% and 16.1% for the same categories.

  38. Still think that unless we have a full-blown recession, the Obamessiah will be re-elected. Last time we had an incumbent bounced when there was not a recession within the two year window before election was the mid 1800s.

  39. Hey Norm says:

    JAN PULLS OUT UNCERTAINTY…SHE HAS HIT THE TALKING POINT TRIFECTA!!!!

  40. Loviara says:

    Balloon Juice has this suggested headline for the NY Times article on the job report.

    GOP Plan To Throttle Economy Ahead Of Crucial Elections Proceeding Apace.

    I would subtitle it:

    Doug Mataconis cheers while millions of Americans struggle to find work.

  41. stonetools says:

    Its interesting that Jan can’t answer that simple, direct question. Its because no Republican can answer it either.
    The tragedy for the Obama Administration is that the economic crisis happened right the end of the Bush Administration, so we didn’t have a chance to see how clueless a Republican Administration would have been dealing with such a crisis.
    Instead the Democrats dealt with it a half hearted fashion, opposed at every turn by a Republican Congress that wanted the Administration to fail.
    The result? Economic and polititical stagnation, a wingnut Republican Congressional majority, and a Republican presidential nominee running on an economic crisis caused by Republicans and sustained largely by Republican obstruction.
    Krugman warned us!

  42. mantis says:

    @Drew:

    An energy policy designed at reducing costs through domestic production.

    Domestic production is higher than ever. It hasn’t reduced costs.

    Domestic production increases will never be enough to offset worldwide consumption growth. The only viable solution is alternative sources.

    The only reason Republicans harp on increased production is their subservience to oil companies, not because they have any interest in reducing costs or addressing our energy problems.

  43. Mikey says:

    @mantis:

    Domestic production is higher than ever.

    Actually, no. It’s only about 60% of what it was at its peak in late 1970.
    U. S. Field Production of Crude Oil (Thousand Barrels per Day)

    However, it is at its highest point since 2003.

  44. jan says:

    @anjin-san:

    “You have been ducking this question for a while, but I will try again. If you could magically turn the economy back to where it was on Bush’s last day in office, would you?”

    It’s one of those gottcha questions, which accomplishes nothing, when given the strick perimeters of a yes/no position. Getting caught in the mire of a worthless question is worthless.

  45. Ben Wolf says:

    I’m really lost with this “But it’s better than Bush!” attitude regarding the economy. I don’t care if Christ, Muhammad and the Buddha were co-presidents, our current economic performance is by any reasonable standard, pathetic. Real unemployment and underemployment have increased in each and every year of Barack Obama’s Administration; that it isn’t getting worse as quickly as under the previous president doesn’t hold water as a reason to approve of his performance in office.

    There is absolutely nothing in the economic data for any politician in D.C. to feel proud of, and they’re all failing the millions of people whose lives are being destroyed by continued mismanagement of the macroeconomy. That includes Obama, Romney, the Democrats and most especially the Republicans who have done everything in their power to torpedo any semblance of a recovery. No one is willing to face the fact our economy is every bit as weak as it was four years ago and is being sustained only by government life-support through large deficits. Policies have not been shaped to meet the needs of the private sector’s health and we continue to pay the price for Washington’s lack of vision.

  46. Drew says:

    You guys jest keep spinning. I see desperation setting in.

    Domestic production of natural gas took hold and prices plummeted. Domestic PRIVATE exploration of oil has taken hold, but Obama restricts federal sites. Prices do not plummet.

    The bids are out on electricity power production (two years out) and they are up something like 8x. Why? Obama is making good on his pledge to make coal fired energy production skyrocket. The regulatory regime is forcing out coal fired production assets. The newer assets are expensive.

    Manufacturers will go to on site production. Consumers will take it up the arse.

    Get a clue, people. This guy is no friend of the little guy. Just enviro zealots and campaign doners.

    Let the spin continue, you only fool yourselves.

  47. jan says:

    @stonetools:

    “The tragedy for the Obama Administration is that the economic crisis happened right the end of the Bush Administration,” under a democratic Congress. I added some pertinent info to your sentence .Or. did you selectively forget that?

    It’s really ironic, because so much is being made about the obstructive Republican House, being the reasons for so many of Obama’s problems/failures. However, when it comes to Bush’s problems, nary a word is said about his last two years working with the 110th Congress — a House governored by Nancy Pelosi, and a Harry Reid Senate. What about their obstructive policies, or failure to reign in Freddie/Fannie, or the other financial institutions in leading up to the sub-prime mortgage financial crash?

    In fact, fiscal numbers were not nearly as bad, in Bush’s 1st 6 years, despite the economic downturns created by the dot coms bubble coming to an end and 911 happening. It was under the democratically held Congress, though, with a republican president that the crisis of ’08 happened.

    Now we have a continuing anemic economy, that stalled out on a decisively held 111th democratic Congress/democratic President, which is being extended into the 112th Congress, divided between dems and republicans, with a democratic President. It is obvious that the dems have had the majority of power, while attempting to shovel off the majority of blame for their failed leadership/policies onto the republicans, who really have had less power since the elections of 2006.

  48. David M says:

    The claim that Congress unanimously rejected “Obama’s budget” is the usual right wing BS. A GOP Senator took some numbers from the budget Obama proposed, and then wrote their own version with the same numbers as a stunt. It’s meaningless, other than it shows who is gullible and partisan enough to buy this garbage.

  49. jan says:

    Stocks are currently down 262. Better refresh that ‘blame Bush’ meme! Pretty soon, though, the tire is going to blow under such a weak excuse tread. Then what?

  50. James says:

    @jan: Really Jan

    What about their obstructive policies, or failure to reign in Freddie/Fannie, or the other financial institutions in leading up to the sub-prime mortgage financial crash?

    You clearly have no idea what you’re talking about; or you are, again, lying. From Ben Bernake himself:

    A number of the vulnerabilities I listed a few moments ago were associated with the increased importance of the so-called shadow banking system. Shadow banking, as usually defined, comprises a diverse set of institutions and markets that, collectively, carry out traditional banking functions–but do so outside, or in ways only loosely linked to, the traditional system of regulated depository institutions. Examples of important components of the shadow banking system include securitization vehicles, asset-backed commercial paper (ABCP) conduits, money market mutual funds, markets for repurchase agreements (repos), investment banks, and mortgage companies. Before the crisis, the shadow banking system had come to play a major role in global finance.

    […]

    As became apparent during the crisis, a key vulnerability of the system was the heavy reliance of the shadow banking sector, as well as some of the largest global banks, on various forms of short-term wholesale funding, including commercial paper, repos, securities lending transactions, and interbank loans. The ease, flexibility, and low perceived cost of short-term funding also supported a broader trend toward higher leverage and greater maturity mismatch in individual shadow banking institutions and in the sector as a whole

    Furthermore,

    In fact, fiscal numbers were not nearly as bad, in Bush’s 1st 6 years, despite the economic downturns created by the dot coms bubble coming to an end and 911 happening. It was under the democratically held Congress, though, with a republican president that the crisis of ’08 happened. (emphasis mine)

    So when US GPD craters a little over 9% in Q4 of 2008, is the fault of the Democrats in the House, but when when have 26 consecutive months of private sector job growth, the Democratic incumbent has “failed leadership/policies “.

    You’re basically using the same argument that George W. Bush did a great job keeping American’s safe, except for the worst domestic terrorist attack, and a devastatingly mis-managed disaster response that he presided over. It’s classic “heads I win, tails you lose”.

  51. An Interested Party says:

    Getting caught in the mire of a worthless question is worthless.

    About as worthless as screaming, “Obama bad! Obama bad!” without offering a credible Republican alternative…

  52. James says:

    @jan: You’re confusing daily cycle with trend lines. The DJIA has never been better.

  53. David M says:

    @jan:

    It was under the democratically held Congress, though, with a republican president that the crisis of ’08 happened.

    Exactly what did the Democratics do in 2007/2008 besides get elected that caused the crisis? Apparently you’ve got the super secret info about their plan to cause a recession immediately upon being elected, but you haven’t shared the details.

  54. James says:

    @jan: Oops, the prior chart is old. Here’s a recent one.

  55. stonetools says:

    Shorter jan:

    “I have no idea how to answer the question, so obviously the question is worthless”.

    The absence of the Republican policy alternatives laid bare by a single simple question and its non -response.

  56. Rob in CT says:

    @jan:

    LOL. As if you were saying “yay, Obama” when the DOW was up at 13500. Please.

    @Drew:

    Do you actually have data that shows that developing oil reserves on federal land will have an appreciable impact on oil prices? I’d be rather surprised if you did. Last I saw, the projected impact was ~$.03/gallon in 10-15 years.

    As for coal: the oldest, dirtiest plants will close. This is a good idea from the standpoint of public health, let alone the environment. All things being equal that of course increase electricity costs. However, I’d be extremely surprised if you can actually back up this:

    The bids are out on electricity power production (two years out) and they are up something like 8x.

    Unless I’m misunderstanding, are you claiming that electric power generation rates will increase 800% over the next two years?

  57. anjin-san says:

    @ Jan

    Stocks are currently down 262.

    Well, if you are a rookie investor who just opened an Ameritrade account last week I am sure that is cause for alarm.

  58. anjin-san says:

    It’s one of those gottcha questions, which accomplishes nothing

    Actually it does accomplish something. It requires you to take a position, as opposed to spinning BS and sharing Fox talking points.

    This should be a no brainer for you, since you feel Obama has screwed up the economy so badly. Lets just go back to the good old days before Obama made such a mess.

    Your refusal to answer this simple question tells us all we need to know 🙂

  59. Neo says:

    Prediction is very hard, especially about the future – Yogi Berra

    Vice President Biden predicted Friday [April 23, 2010] that the U.S. economy would be adding up to 500,000 jobs each month “some time in the next couple of months.”

    Biden said he “got in trouble” for his prediction last month of job growth. “Even some in the White House said, ‘Hey, don’t get ahead of yourself,’ ” he said at a Pennsylvania fundraiser, according to a pool report. “Well, I’m here to tell you, some time in the next couple of months, we’re going to be creating between 250,000 jobs a month and 500,000 jobs a month.

    Still waiting for Recovery Summer

  60. Hey Norm says:

    “…Stocks are currently down 262. Better refresh that ‘blame Bush’ meme! Pretty soon, though, the tire is going to blow under such a weak excuse tread. Then what? “

    OMG…the Dow is down to almost 12,000.
    It was 4000 points lower than that on Bush’s last day in office.
    That’s the economy Jan wants to go back to…you know…before Obama destroyed it.

  61. anjin-san says:

    @ Hey Norm

    I got out of the market in 2001 and back in a few days after Obama took office. That has worked out pretty well 🙂

  62. anjin-san says:

    As far as cutting jobs at HP —> if a business is not doing well, how do you support workers?

    After Carly Fiorina’s train wreck tenure at HP, that is a real problem. Well, she was on a lot of magazine covers, so all was not for naught…

  63. Rob in CT says:

    Speaking of energy issues, this is pretty amazing:

    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/california-politics/2012/05/california-senate-rejects-fracking-legislation.html

    Under Pavley’s bill, oil companies would be required to give 30 days notice to land owners whose property line or residence is within 300 feet of a fracking operation. The firms would also have to notify local governments and water boards. The state’s oil and gas agency would then post the information on its website.

    “This is simply a ‘tell-your-neighbors’ type of policy,” Pavley said on the Senate floor. “This is not a bill to ban, prohibit or regulate hydraulic fracturing. It’s to provide transparency to the public.”

    She added: “The public is asking themselves, maybe rightly so, what are we trying to hide?”

    Republicans characterized the bill as a job-killing regulation for an industry that employs many Californians. “This bill is nothing more than to slow down oil and gas production in California,” said state Sen. Jean Fuller (R-Bakersfield).

    The measure failed, 17 to 18, with several Democrats joining their Republican colleagues in opposition. It was granted “reconsideration,” meaning it could receive another hearing before Friday’s bill deadline.

    Right. So you don’t have to tell anyone what you’re doing, where you’re doing it or how its done. Because if you provide such basic information, it will “kill jobs.” WTF?

    What could go wrong?

  64. Rob in CT says:

    Damn. Blockquote FAIL. I hang my head in shame.

  65. mattb says:

    @jan:

    Stocks are currently down 262. Better refresh that ‘blame Bush’ meme! Pretty soon, though, the tire is going to blow under such a weak excuse tread.

    Nice Hannity “it was a record cold day clearly there’s no Global warming” (notice how record hot day’s are *never* proof of climate change).

    That’s pretty weak tea even for you. Here’s a chart demonstrating how well, all things considered, stocks have done since Obama took office (and historicized by showing the Dow all the way back to the beginning of GWB’s administration):
    http://finance.yahoo.com/echarts?s=%5EDJI+Interactive#symbol=%5Edji;range=20010101,20120402;compare=;indicator=volume;charttype=area;crosshair=on;ohlcvalues=0;logscale=off;source=undefined;

    If you’re going to argue that Obama has hurt the Economy, Stocks would not be the first place to start (especially given the general conservative meme beginning in the Summer of 2008 that somehow the stock market crashed over fears that Obama would be elected).

  66. Andy says:

    Well, people can spin and blame all they want, but the fact of the matter is that these numbers are bad and there is a serious threat that we’ll enter another recession after a very weak recovery period. But hey, let’s ignore that and work hard on fixing blame instead of fixing our problems, the modern equivalent of fiddling around while Rome burns.

  67. jan says:

    Remember when Obama said, “Judge me on my first 4 years.” Well, that’s what people are doing. They are looking at what Obama has done, and hopefully when it comes time to vote, they’ll keep that in the front of their decision-making.

  68. anjin-san says:

    Remember when Obama said, “Judge me on my first 4 years.”

    Economy back from the brink of depression that Bush left us at, Bin Laden dead, GM alive.

    Works for me.

  69. anjin-san says:

    Say Jan, since you are super duper concerned abou the DOW, lets look at some numbers:

    -24 percent: Decline in the Dow during President George W. Bush’s second term from 2005 to 2009, dropping 2,522 points to 7,949.

    And it is up, what, 55% since Obama took office? Closed at 12,118.57 after a very rough day today.

    7,949 > Bush
    12,118.57 > Obama

    You get to pick one Jan. Which do you choose?

    Oh wait, you are still pretending the Bush train wreck never happened. Or that it is all Pelosi’s fault. Or Jimmy Carter’s. Or ____________. Anybody but the guy who was actually sitting at the big desk…

  70. jan says:

    @anjin-san:

    Say Jan, since you are super duper concerned abou the DOW, lets

    The DOW is a measurement of the market, and changes on a daily basis. Today, it’s sizable drop indicates concerns generated from the ‘unexpected’ low jobs report, coupled with an uptick of the UE number. There is, however, nothing ‘super duper’ about it. And the glib hyperbole is all your’s anjin.

    Actually, many numbers are up, since Obama took office. Let’s see, unemployment, deficits, spending, government size, gasoline, food prices, precious metals are definitely ‘up,’ along with what some say is a superficially inflated stock market. Downer indexes are productivity, consumer confidence, housing prices, the value of the dollar, our children’s prospects for the future. Personally, I don’t see much to gloat about in any of those ups and downs under Obama’s watch.

  71. jan says:

    @anjin-san:

    Economy back from the brink of depression that Bush left us at, Bin Laden dead, GM alive.

    You keep leaving out the Democratic Congress, co-billing it for the cause of the ‘depression.’ Also, OBL was the combined effort of Bush intelligence and Obama defaulting to and continuing with Bush’s efforts in pursuing Bin Laden. However, Obama has taken most of the credit, leaking Seal 6 info along the way, to up his prestige. He has done the same with the Malike Agreement, originally forged by Bush, in leaving Iraq. As for the The GM bailou, itt screwed the stockholders. And the intrusion of the government into the car industry caused closures of dealerships and loss of jobs. There are many who have said a fairer and better managed reconfiguration of GM could have been accomplished without having a Government Motors type of scenario from taking place. For an example just look at Ford who declined government help.

  72. anjin-san says:

    You keep leaving out the Democratic Congress, co-billing it for the cause of the ‘depression.’

    Of course. Perhaps you could explain what actions were taken by the class of ’06 that took us to the brink. Please be specific.

    closures of dealerships

    You mean the closures of dealerships in a marketplace that had way too many dealerships? I have a buddy who’s family has been in that business for decades. He sold his dealerships in ’04, said the handwriting on the wall was not hard to see.

    Personally, I don’t see much to gloat about in any of those ups and downs under Obama’s watch

    To gloat about? No. Preferable to the economy that Obama inherited? By orders of magnitude.

    Or are you ready to go on record and say you would prefer to return to the economy on Bushe’s last day of office before Obama mucked things up? Of course not, because you know you are spouting crap.

    Bush’s efforts in pursuing Bin Laden

    Bush publicly stated he was not concerned about Bin Laden and that he was not a priority. Bush broke up the team that was pursuing Bin Laden. He took his eye off the ball in Afghanistan to go after phantom WMD in Iraq.

    Care to try again?

    There are many who have said a fairer and better managed reconfiguration of GM could have been accomplished without having a Government Motors type of scenario from taking place. For an example just look at Ford who declined government help.

    Yes, many on Fox News have said this. Ford was in far, far better shape than GM. Their management saw Detroit heading for a wall and took measures to strengthen the company. GM did not. Do you every actually do any reading on business or the economy, or are you strictly a cut n’ paste gal?

  73. David M says:

    @jan:

    Actually, many numbers are up, since Obama took office. Let’s see, unemployment, deficits, spending, government size, gasoline, food prices, precious metals are definitely ‘up,’ along with what some say is a superficially inflated stock market. Downer indexes are productivity, consumer confidence, housing prices, the value of the dollar, our children’s prospects for the future. Personally, I don’t see much to gloat about in any of those ups and downs under Obama’s watch.

    This is worth responding to, for other readers benefits, if not yours.

    Unemployment was 8.3% in Feb 2009, the first month after Obama was sworn in, and is 8.2% now.

    The deficit was $1.4 trillion when Obama was sworn in, and is $1.3 trillion now (2012).

    Federal spending was 25% of GDP in 2009 and is 24% now (2012).

    Gas prices were above $4/gal before the recession (2008) and are below $4 gal now (2012).

    Inflation (food prices) has been low the last couple years.

    Productivity is definitely up since the recession ended, even if it’s not great.

    Consumer confidence is also up since the recession ended.

    The dollar to euro exchange rate is roughly the same now as it was in 2008/2009.

    Care to reconsider pretty much everything?

  74. superdestroyer says:

    @Rob in CT:

    Many progressives would love to put an end to natural gas production in the U.S. However, they seem to not be very successful.

    Look at how many leftist have opposed fracing. Look at how man progressives will oppose when expansion of pipelines. Even look at how progressives oppose wind power with their opposition to additional high-tension power line.

  75. Hey Norm says:

    “….Many progressives would love to put an end to natural gas production in the U.S.l…”
    WTF planet do you live on???
    Do you just make this crap up yourself?
    Or do the voices in your head make it up for you?

  76. Neo says:

    I keep coming upon this meme that the policies of Mitt Romney are those that they are using today in Europe.
    Europe hasn’t had policies anything like those of Mitt Romney for at least a few decades.
    No, Europe took another route. They are beyond Barack Obama. They are where Obama would be if you let him be President for 10 or so more years. They are where Obama would be when he realizes that everything he has tried just didn’t work they way his academic friends said it would. Europe is where Obama would be when he realizes that Maggie Thatcher was right, that eventually you run out of other people’s money.
    Yes, they both involve some level of austerity, but the difference is that Romney’s austerity comes before you go bankrupt when you have a chance to form your own priorities. It’s called being “responsible.” While Europe’s austerity comes from being bankrupt when outside parties will do it for you. It comes from having been irresponsible.

  77. jan says:

    @David M:

    Interesting stash of figures. However, laying a tack down, in one spot, does not really give the complete lay of the land, nor of the economy, for that matter.

    For instance, when Bush left office the size of the labor force was 65.7%. In March of this year, it was down to 63.9%. When doing an UE figure, extrapolated from similar work force sizes, you would have a 10.8% UE number rather than the 8.3% that was documented in March of ’12.

    Hmmmm, quite a difference, wouldn’t you say? You can read more of the analysis here.

    Also, during most of Bush’s term in office the UE rate vacillated between a low of 4% to the high 6% range — this is taking into account the 911 event, which could have impacted the market more than it did. When Obama was elected in Nov 2008 it was 6.8%. Upon his election, it rose a half a point each month — 7.3% in Dec, 7.8% in January ’09 when he officially was sworn into office, to the 8.3% number you conveniently noted after his inauguration. Could business have been chilling after his election, letting more people go? That’s what some economists have concluded.

    As for your figures about spending and deficits under Obama, I’ll just post a recent article from the Washington Post: The facts about the growth of spending under Obama.

    Another current indicator of our economy going south is a very recent piece here by the wonkish ZeroHedge talking about how the U.S. debt soars 54 billion overnight, closing May with a record $15,770,685,085,364.10. Lots of numbers, which is even higher as I am posting this.

    As for gas prices…you’re just way off on your guesstimates, at both ends of the spectrum. As for today’s prices, here on the west coast they are anecdotely in the mid four dollar range, and I have paid as high as almost $5 earlier in the year in N. CA.

    Food has also gotten much more expensive. The market I have shopped at for years in N. CA even posted signs apologizing for the higher prices, especially in produce.

  78. anjin-san says:

    It’s called being “responsible.

    Sorry, if you are talking about Republicans being fiscally responsible, we will need a time machine.

  79. James says:

    @jan: Are you seriously suggesting Barack Obama (or George W. Bush for that matter) has complete control over global economic forces and demographic patters? Do you seriously think that the 9% GDP contraction in 2008’s 4th quarter is Barack Obama’s fault?

  80. David M says:

    @jan: Gas price chart for the last 5 years.

    Kessler at the Washington Post doesn’t even support your position, and his column is pretty weak

    Could business have been chilling after [Obama’s] election, letting more people go? That’s what some economists have concluded.

    That’s possibly the most ridiculous thing you’ve ever posted. And trying to make Bush look by using the average unemployment rate, and then ending the time he’s responsible for before he left office is pure partisan hackery. Presidents have very little effect on the unemployment rate, but I’ve never seen a credible claim that they can impact it before they take office.

    The labor force participation rate has been trending down since before Obama took office, and it’s due more to demographics than anything else.

  81. jan says:

    @David M:

    I’m looking at regular old gas prices on the street. Everyone knows how flexible numbers and statistics on a table can be in making their points. However, reality is a paycheck (or the absence of one), the current prices at the grocery store (that seem to go up on the re-purchase of items), the latest price of gas on a gas station’s moniker.

    As for the comment about ‘business chilling’ after the ’08 election, there were direct and indirect references made to that point. I don’t think small business has ever seen Obama as a friendly partner in cultivating an economy condusive to growth. Now, big business seems to be joining them in such an opinion.

    Demographics doesn’t really cut it as a reasonable reason for such a drop in the work force. Sure, people have retired. But, many of these same retirees are trying to re-enter the work force because they can’t make it on what benefits they have. People have also graduated from college. How many of this demographic are able to enter the job market, espeically a market in which they are not subjected to under-employment? Also, the general population has grown, not shrunk since 2008.

  82. James says:

    @jan: I read this paragraph,

    Everyone knows how flexible numbers and statistics on a table can be in making their points. However, reality is a paycheck (or the absence of one), the current prices at the grocery store (that seem to go up on the re-purchase of items), the latest price of gas on a gas station’s moniker.

    and all I can hear is ‘Yeah, forget all that empirical data and focus on my anecdotal assertions.’

    Next you claim:

    I don’t think small business has ever seen Obama as a friendly partner in cultivating an economy condusive to growth.

    What part of 26 consecutive months of private sector job growth do you not understand? What part of 9% negative GDP growth, in the fiscal quarter directly preceding the Obama administration do you not understand?

  83. David M says:

    @James:

    What part of 26 consecutive months of private sector job growth do you not understand? What part of 9% negative GDP growth, in the fiscal quarter directly preceding the Obama administration do you not understand?

    “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!”

    Those facts don’t make Obama look bad, so they are not part of the conversation the GOP wants to have.

  84. jan says:

    @James:

    You can take my comments anyway you like, James. However, statistics has long been the treasure trove of making intellectual assertions that completely differ with on-the-ground experiences.

    It reminds me of news one gets from the front lines of war, via the MSM, compared to the comments/personal observation of those seeing what’s going on with their eyes. My husband was in the service, and this comparison and contrast was driven home by his own experiences.

    I live in an upper middle class neighborhood. And, around me, across the street are so many families that have doubled up with their grown kids, who are unable to find any conventional work.

    So, scoff at anecdotal stories. But, I have an idea that when people vote in November, their choices will not be based on internet charts and statistics, but, rather on what is going on in their own reality and that of their family and friends.

    In the meantime, here is more aftertaste analysis of yesterday’s job’s report, along with a lot nifty charts and numbers:

    May jobs report suggests U.S. in recession red zone

    IHS Global Insight:
    2012 is beginning to look horribly like 2011 – initial high hopes that the recovery was kicking into high gear, subsequently dashed. … Although there is probably now some undershooting in seasonally sensitive sectors (for example in construction) after previous overshooting, the latest figures cast doubt on whether the economy has enough momentum to achieve even the 2.2% growth rate we had expected for this year. Given the uncertainties over the Eurozone crisis, emerging market growth, the US elections and the “fiscal cliff”, there are plenty of reasons for businesses to stay cautious in their hiring plans, even if surging gasoline prices are for the moment no longer on the list of things to worry about.

  85. David M says:

    It’s probably a good time to remind everyone of the public sector job losses under Obama, and how different it was during Bush’s first term. This has been a drag on the private sector for a while now, and the economy would be in a much different place if the public sector employment had increased during the recession instead of being cut.

  86. David M says:

    @jan: I was actually going to read the article to see what it said, but the chart at the top is the author announcing as loudly as possible that he is a useless toad, and thinks his readers are ignorant buffoons. I’ll be sure to remember that James Pethokoukis is a dishonest columnist and that the American Enterprise Institute has no integrity if it continues to employ him.

  87. James says:

    @jan:

    However, statistics has long been the treasure trove of making intellectual assertions that completely differ with on-the-ground experiences.

    A few points on this:
    1)The plural of anecdote is not data. This is beyond elementary for any social or hard science undergrad.
    2) It’s pretty clear you have some animus against Barack Obama and/or his policies. Just because you pick out observations in your daily life that reenforce your dislike of Barack Obama, it doesn’t follow that your cherry-picked examples are rigorous, or lend any meaning to understanding the actual problems facing US economic growth trends.

    […] so many families that have doubled up with their grown kids, who are unable to find any conventional work.

    Yes, I’ll repeat: what part of 9% negative growth do you not understand? What part of “Global Financial Crisis” do you not understand?

    So, scoff at anecdotal stories. But, I have an idea that when people vote in November, their choices will not be based on internet charts and statistics, but, rather on what is going on in their own reality and that of their family and friends (emphasis mine).

    Um…sure. Make up what ever fantasies you want. You’ve made up your mind; why let facts get in the way?

  88. James says:

    @jan: Moreover, the assertion “statistics” have been a “treasure trove” of evidence that contradict “on-the-ground experiences” (whatever that means) is one that is deeply ignorant of how statistical data works. Close friends of mine have each gotten jobs in the past few weeks; does that mean our national unemployment problem is over? It’s raining outside my window today; does that mean it’s raining outside my uncle’s window in Texas?

  89. jukeboxgrad says:

    norm:

    OMG…the Dow is down to almost 12,000. It was 4000 points lower than that on Bush’s last day in office.

    Yup. The Dow dropped 22% during Bush’s term (after more than tripling during Clinton’s). As of today, the Dow is up about 50%, compared with what Bush left behind. If the Dow is higher than 6475 on the day Obama leaves office, then he will have done better than GWB, on this metric.

  90. anjin-san says:

    Wow Jan, you are very unhappy about Obama’s handling of the economy. So I ask again, if you could magically go back to the economy on Bush’s last day in office (before Obama messed things up) would you?

    Why are you afraid to answer this simple question? Perhaps because the only honest answer would reveal you as an utter fraud?

  91. jan says:

    @anjin-san:

    I’ve already answered that question, anjin, with a caveat included. I would go back to Bush’s last day in office, right now, if, and only if, Obama were not following him in the presidency. If you had someone who believed and, more importantly, practiced the tenets of free enterprise, following Bush’s last day in office, we would be better off in the long run.

  92. anjin-san says:

    If you had someone who believed and, more importantly, practiced the tenets of free enterprise

    Yes, those free market, small government conservatives could save us. Like Curt Schilling. Big proponent of small government and the free market.Do you know who he is? Former baseball player, and failed entrepreneur. His free market, small government views did not stop him from taking 75 million in financing fron Rhode Island (Schilling made well over 100 million as a baseball player)

    Well, he took the government money and still ran the business into the ground. I am betting that his personal lifestyle is not taking much of a hit.

    And then there is free market dude GW Bush. His only success in business was the development of the Texas Rangers ballpark. With generous funding from a tax increase. Increased the value of the team quite a bit, and ol’ George made out like a bandit when he sold his share of the team. He had a lot of business failures, but his families friends in Saudi Arabia were always ready to bail him out, so he never took a financial hit (remember on 9.12.01, when thousands of Americans were grounded and stranded? The only ones who could get airborne were Saudi VIPs – its nice to have friends).

    Do you not understand that the free market the right worships is in large part, mythical? It’s a rigged game where the 1% always wins, and 99% of the people in the country fight for the crumbs.

  93. anjin-san says:

    Obama’s time in the Senate was so short, not noteworthy and has nothing to do with the discussion at hand.

    Yes, Obama was a Senator for what, four short years? Such a short time is not worth discussing. Yet according to you, in just two short years, a Democratic Congress destroyed the nation’s economy. Maybe they were just eager beavers.