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Ear to the Ground

Skimpy 54,000 U.S. Jobs Added in May

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Posted on Jun 3, 2011
Flickr / SS&SS

While Congress continues to deliberate over how best to reduce the national deficit, our volatile and indifferent economy added only 54,000 jobs during May—178,000 fewer than were were created in April—and the official unemployment rate ticked back up to 9.1 percent. The federal focus on debt elimination has crippled the government’s ability to assist in the creation of jobs that would provide the reported 14 million victims of the Great Recession with basic social and financial security. —ARK

The New York Times:

The Labor Department reported on Friday that the United States added 54,000 nonfarm payroll jobs last month, following an increase of 232,000 jobs in April. May’s job gain was about a third of what economists had been forecasting.

... The biggest job gains were in professional and business services and in health care services, which have been growing steadily for years. State and local governments, struggling with severe budget shortfalls, continued to shed jobs. They are expected to keep laying off workers for months to come.

... While any job gains at all are welcome, the pace of job growth thus far has been too slow to reverse much of the damage wrought by the Great Recession, which has left nearly 14 million unemployed workers in its wake. For the last few months economists had been predicting that the economy was finally gathering steam and that a sharper bounce-back was imminent, only to be disappointed again and again.

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By Ben Donahower, June 5, 2011 at 11:10 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Between the public sector shedding jobs for the
foreseeable future and the number of people who are
still underwater on their homes keeping them locked
to a limited pool of potential jobs and in overall
poor financial health, the economy will have a hard
time rebounding.

The number of unemployed people is staggering but I’m
sure if you add on the number of people who are
underemployed it’s an even more dramatic figure. 
It’s my understanding that McDonald’s received many,
many times the number of openings they had in their
recent nationwide hiring event. 

These are mostly the types of jobs that are available
and even in these service sector jobs that don’t pay
well or offer benefits there is much greater need
than there is demand.

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rico, suave's avatar

By rico, suave, June 4, 2011 at 5:09 pm Link to this comment

Lew:

Genius! Thanks.

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By Lew Ciefer, June 4, 2011 at 10:55 am Link to this comment

By Big B, June 3 at 1:20 pm
here’s the scoop, both the Bush and Obama stimulus plans were mostly bailouts to the financial sector. And almost half of both stimulus packages were TAX BREAKS to the wealthiest americans and corporations.

Wow! This is great! Finally! A graduate from the Nancy Pelosi School of Economics! Were you in the first or second graduating class? You must have people knocking your door down trying to hire you. 

There’s nothing like being enlightened by a Nancy Pelosi grad! I mean, here I was duped into believing that the bail-outs had to do with saving and covering the arses of all those Wall Street financiers and bankers for all that fraud they committed by bundling, high-risk, low-grade investments and rating them AAA, not to mention that few kajillion to GM and its union thugs. I was also duped into believing that most of the bailout money went to foreign banks as hush money to keep them from exposing all that criminal activity. Silly me! It was tax breaks to rich! Damn!

I too wish for the equality and equity of a State run economic system. I have to admit to looking on green with envy at the success of North Korea, Red China, the former U.S.S.R., Vietnam, Pol Pot’s Cambodia, etc. You didn’t/don’t see their poor running around grossly obese and wearing XXXXXXXXXX size clothes. There are no Oligarchs in Red China or North Korea ... no sir! ... Their leaders are exactly like all the other people. No class separation there! Total equality! Marx is smiling in his grave. I mean all one has to do to prove your hypothesis right is look at the mass exodus from this the Great Satan to other countries like China, North Korea, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, etc. Pretty soon the last to leave will have to turn out the lights.

And as for war! Damn Rethugs! If they’d learn from Democrats they wouldn’t promote war they’d promote “democratic actions” instead, where the bombs and planes and killing is all humanitarian. Have you noticed that in Libya there isn’t a single collateral damage? Democrat launched missiles kill only the enemy of democracy—even if that enemy’s sin was nothing more than to stay at home and protect his property to avoid it being stolen by pro-government forces. Yes sir ... no dead chillins with Democrat bombs, missiles, and mortars! And being founded on “humanitarian grounds” Democrat wars “humanitarian efforts” aren’t a waste of taxpayer money. 

I do have one question for you Big B: Nancy Peloser claimed that extending unemployment benefits was necessary because unemployment benefits grow the economy and create jobs. Well, the benefits were extended and yet the economy remains stagnant and jobs are at record lows even with a Mocha Savior in the White House. What gives?

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By Lew Ciefer, June 4, 2011 at 10:53 am Link to this comment

By Jimnp72, June 3 at 11:36 am Link to this comment
Hey Rethugs where are the jobs you promised. Guess you are too busy cutting services to the poor, elderly and disabled.
so you lied again, since that is all you know how to do.

Way to go Jimnp! I love it when a Lib isn’t afraid to call out all those lying Rethugs! More balls like yours is what the Left needs!

As one who has dealt with all those lying Rethugs also, I feel I must caution you on areas of potential disaster.

1.) Steer clear of any conversation about Nancy Peloser. Remember it was the Peloser who made the claim that unemployment benefits “grow an economy and creates jobs.” You and I know that one has to have one’s head up one’s arse pretty damn deep to make stupid claim. You can defend against it by saying she’s a DINO.

2.) You don’t want to make any statement that reminds all those services to elderly, poor, and disabled cutting Rethugs that the Dems had control of all three branches of government and did absolutely nothing to help the elderly, the poor, and the disabled. We’re not the only one’s who know that Dem policy has been a death’s blow to a seriously wounded economy. And continues to be!

3.) Stay away from Dubya and how he destroyed jobs because the fact is that there were more jobs when he left office than when he entered ... I know, I know, that one hurts like hell!

4.) You called them—and rightfully so—liars. You might want to use caution here. Remember the Mocha Savior’s promises during the campaign? I.e

“When there’s a bill that ends up on my desk as President, you, the public, will have five days to look on-line and find out what’s in it, before I sign it. So that you know what your government’s doing.” –Barack “Mocha Savior” Obama

Some might consider that a bald-faced lie. Of course we don’t because we know that Dems are as pure as the driven snow and people of the highest moral character. Well, except for Clinton and his cigar, Wiener and his wiener, Barney Frank and his brothel, Kennedy and the waitress sandwiches, etc.

5.) You want to avoid any discussion on things like “derived demand” and the over-abundance of historical evidence that proves communism/socialism a complete and utter failure that causes unimaginable human suffering and death.

These should hold you for a while ... I’ll keep an eye out and if any lying services cutting Rethugs should be getting the best of you ... you can count on me as a friend to back you up! smile

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By rico, suave, June 4, 2011 at 5:29 am Link to this comment

Gmonst:

I totally agree about infrastructure projects- roads, air traffic control, freight rail, ports and the like. Those things are what government is better organized to do because the “profit” in a new or better road is hard for a private company to measure and so a company will not readily build it.

I disagree, of course, that raising taxes on the rich is the way to pay for better roads. The highway trust fund was created to, and successfully, until recently, build and maintain the federal highway system. Unfortunately, the bureaucrats saw all that money sitting there and raided it for bike paths and nature trails, and all sorts of other non-road related pet projects. Raising taxes on the rich will not lead to better roads. It will lead to a temporary boost for the treasury, which our venal politicians will raid for whatever purpose they see fit. And it will take money out of the hands of the people who would otherwise use it to hire a new worker.

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By Gmonst, June 3, 2011 at 5:17 pm Link to this comment

Rico,

Not all government spending equals handouts.  The “stimulus” was that sort, but what you point out is really a good case for government spending on infrastructure projects.  I actually think you are right that government handouts (such as the bank bailout) do not do much to create jobs, permanent or temporary.  I also agree that by in large ramping up government spending in any form will not do much to create permanent jobs.  After the spending increase is over many of the jobs will go away.  Strangely though therein lies the benefit though of increasing spending on infrastructure during hard times.  The jobs may be temporary and not a permanent solution, but the jobs themselves are strengthening the American system, making it more modern, creating the hardware to allow business to flourish on into the future.  This helps the private sector recover by increasing spending (more people employed) and also should streamline private business costs by the improved infrastructure.  As the system is repaired business recovers and begins hiring more.  Not going to be a magic solution, but seems to me a lot more practical than any other solution.  Raise the taxes for a while on the rich and get that money out there flowing through the economy with increased infrastructure spending.  I am not a hard core tax and spend type, but I see the benefits to doing so in difficult times.  If its on the right projects, we will all benefit rich and poor.

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By DesertWren, June 3, 2011 at 4:50 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Yeah, rico, it was all spending.

http://www.propublica.org/special/stimulus-plan-taxcut-list

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By rico, suave, June 3, 2011 at 2:03 pm Link to this comment

Big B:

“And almost half of both stimulus packages were TAX BREAKS to the wealthiest americans and corporations. Yup, that’s right, “

Nope, that’s wrong. All the stimulus money was borrowed money. There wasn’t a single tax cut in any of the stimulus bills. It was all spending. You’re right, it was a Wall Street, more specifically, a bank/insurance/GM/UAW, bailout- I never said it wasn’t. What I said was that government “jobs programs” are a poor substitute for private sector job creation, and that bailouts create harmful dependency.

Thanks for noting the “obvious” truth of my fishing adage and Thatcher’s take on socialism. Glad you agree.

“Pinhead?” That’s helpful.

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By Big B, June 3, 2011 at 1:20 pm Link to this comment

Leave it to a pinhead like Rico to point out the obvious. For the dumbasses like Rico, here’s the scoop, both the Bush and Obama stimulus plans were mostly bailouts to the financial sector. And almost half of both stimulus packages were TAX BREAKS to the wealthiest americans and corporations. Yup, that’s right, more trickle down Ronny Ray-guns bullshit. It hasn’t worked in 30 years, but that’s no reason to give up on it yet, right?

What have we learned? Tax give aways to the wealthiest among us accomplice nothing (but bigger portfolios for our oligarchs) And of course, every dollar spent on war takes money away from our children, our retirees, and our infrastructure.

We have had 30 years of lower taxes, deregulation, and free trade. By the conservative standard, we should all be swimming in money by now. But it didn’t work. It never has, and it never will. Medicare pulled more people out of poverty than did entrepenurialism.

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By Jimnp72, June 3, 2011 at 11:36 am Link to this comment

Hey Rethugs where are the jobs you promised. Guess you are too busy cutting services to the poor, elderly and disabled.
so you lied again, since that is all you know how to do.

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rico, suave's avatar

By rico, suave, June 3, 2011 at 9:26 am Link to this comment

Do we need more evidence that the “stimulus” has no permanent effect? The old, “Give the man a fish and he eats for a day, teach him to fish and he eats forever” is reinforced by the latest numbers.

Private business creates permanent jobs far better than one-off government handouts. Of course, the way preferred by socialist truthdiggers is to tax private business so the handouts can continue. But, as Margaret Thatcher said, “Socialism is fine until you run out of other people’s money.”

And the handouts merely make people dependent on the government, which is fine with the folks in Washington, who want nothing more than to control more and more aspects of our private lives.

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