This post originally appeared at www.fiscalaccountability.org.
With the release of the June employment data, it’s time to one again examine the failed “stimulus” policies of the past year and a half. While unemployment dropped slightly from May – a decrease from 9.7 to 9.5 percent – the underlying numbers are an indication that the “recovery” part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act continues to elude the U.S. economy.
Taxpayers have watched as the White House has continuously moved the goalposts on its claims of “stimulus” job creation and we can certainly expect more rhetoric but fewer results in the wake of the newest jobs report. Why? Because we’ve seen it before.
Back in August, the President attempted to edify his government by “stimulus” by claiming the economy was headed in the “right direction” because jobless claims had decreased. At that time, the country was still shedding jobs at an astounding rate – about 2,50,000 jobs a month. The good news, according to the White House, was that the country was no longer shunting jobs at the rate of around 440,000, which had been the case in the previous month. As Keith Hennesey pointed out on his blog, expeditiously losing jobs is still, undecidedly, the wrong direction.
Today’s numbers tell the same tale, and once again the President has claimed the economy is headed in the “right direction.” However, while the adiministration has continues to reiterate this claim, the data tells a very different story. Employers cut 125,000 jobs last month and the number of people who left the workforce entirely (i.e. stopped searching for jobs) is huge: 652,000. Compare this to the paltry 83,000 jobs added last month, and it’s clear that the country, a year and a half after the “stimulus,” is still nowhere near recovery. Worse yet, with the largest tax hike in history looming down the road, business is reluctant, if not entirely averse, to increasing its payrolls anytime soon. Still think we're headed in the right direction? Think again, Mr. President.