President Obama’s stimulus package has run its course and been exhausted, and the Republicans in Congress prevented the passage of yet another meddlesome economic plan, and now the economy is picking up steam.

It is no coincidence.

From


Jobs Data Show Sustained Growth


By JOSH MITCHELL And JEFFREY SPARSHOTT

WASHINGTON—The U.S. labor market grew in January at its most robust pace since last spring, a sign that the economy’s momentum carried into the new year.

Nonfarm payrolls rose by 243,000 last month, the Labor Department said Friday, marking the biggest gain since April. The jobless rate fell by two-tenths of a point to 8.3%, the lowest it has been since February 2009.

Both figures contradicted expectations of a slowdown in job growth to start the year. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires had forecast a gain of 125,000 in payrolls and that the jobless rate would remain at 8.5%.

The report also indicated that job growth was stronger in previous months than initially reported, with the economy gaining 60,000 jobs beyond the government’s preliminary figures for November and December.

The latest drop in the jobless rate, which is obtained from a separate household survey was largely because of genuine job growth rather than a reduction in the labor force, the report showed. The number of unemployed people fell to 12.8 million, a three-year low, and the jobless rate has fallen from 9.1% since August.

More at the link. But it’s worth noting that President Obama’s economic stimulus plan, the one which was supposed to keep unemployment down to 8%, has long run its course, and his second proposed jobs plan was killed in Congress . . . and now the economy is starting to create new jobs. Political reality being what it is, the President will get the credit for new job creation, but the economic reality is that job creation has begun since his meddlesome policies ended. As President Obama and the Democrats campaign against the “do nothing” Republicans, the Republicans actually preventing more government interference in the economy seems to be just what the economy needs.

Of course, this helps the unemployment percentage:

14 Comments

  1. “More at the link. But it’s worth noting that President Obama’s economic stimulus plan, the one which was supposed to keep unemployment down to 8%, has long run its course, and his second proposed jobs plan was killed in Congress . . . and now the economy is starting to create new jobs”

    Yorkshire says:
    February 3, 2012 at 15:32

    “What Link???? This one where it says the Unemployment rate came DOWN because ANOTHER 1.2 million quit looking for work. If they were included, the percentage would REALLY be Double Digits.”

    http://money.cnn.com/2011/09/08/news/economy/stimulus_jobs_record/index.htm

    —-
    Stimulus added jobs — but not enough

    NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — Despite non-stop criticism from Republicans, the Obama administration’s efforts to help the economy has created jobs.

    It just hasn’t created nearly enough given the damage done to the labor market by the Great Recession.

    The administration’s initial stimulus plan, the $787 billion package passed in February 2009, was designed to save or create about 4 million jobs.

    According to some third-party estimates, the White House may have come close to hitting that target, especially if you factor in the administration’s bailout of the auto industry.

    But the job losses in late 2008 and early 2009 ended up being much worse than expected. A total of 3.8 million jobs were lost from December 2008 through April 2009, an average of just over 750,000 a month.

    By the time the job losses stopped a year after Obama took office, the Great Recession had cost the economy 8.8 million jobs, and the unemployment rate was stuck in the 9% to 10% range.

    So even if estimates of more than 4 million jobs saved or created was correct, it was not nearly enough to get the job market back on track
    —-

    http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/07/17/penny-wise-policy/

    —-
    Mark Thoma sends me to Jonathan Schwarz making the case that Obama knew perfectly well that the stimulus should have been bigger. I’m not sure that lets his advisers completely off the hook; there’s a big difference between saying, well, the macroeconomic case says this should be bigger, but smaller is OK, and saying — as they should have, and maybe some did — that a weak stimulus runs a large risk of setting us on a path toward a lost decade.
    —-

    http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/09/05/on-the-inadequacy-of-the-stimulus/

    —-
    Put these together and you have a negative shock on the order of 6 percent of GDP.

    Against this you had a stimulus bill of $800 billion — except $100 billion of that was AMT extension that was going to happen anyway, another $200 billion was other tax cuts of dubious effectiveness, so you were left with $500 billion of spending, spread over more than 2 years — maybe 1.5 percent of GDP or less.

    It just wasn’t big enough to do the job.
    —-

    [Released from moderation @ 1819. Discussion settings on THE FIRST STREET JOURNAL send comments with three or more hyperlinks into moderation automatically. -- Editor.]

  2. “The Forgotten Man” By Jon McNaughton

    This has an explanation of the painting, and a key to each President and other objects in the painting. My interpretation is the 42 Pesidents (one president served twice four years apart and is counted twice) standing behind BO are appalled at his disregard and trampling on the Constitution and the shredding of the Bill of Rights. BO has never liked the limiting powers in the document. And as an aside Supreme Court Justice Ginsberg told a group of Egyptians trying to come up with a new Constitution to skip our model because it was outdated. What the HELL is this Country coming to be?

    http://www.mcnaughtonart.com/artwork/pdf_file/379/forgottenman-lowres.pdf

  3. The Regime Propaganda numbers are bogus. How can the number of working people go down, and the unemployment rate does also. I guess it was done with the NEW MATH where if you just try, you get a star for your “self-esteem”.

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/implied-unemployment-rate-rises-115-spread-propaganda-number-surges-30-year-high

    Implied Unemployment Rate Rises To 11.5%, Spread To Propaganda Number Surges To 30 Year High

    Submitted by Tyler Durden on 02/03/2012 09:35 -0500

    Sick of the BLS propaganda? Then do the following calculation with us: using BLS data, the US civilian non-institutional population was 242,269 in January, an increase of 1.7 million month over month: apply the long-term average labor force participation rate of 65.8% to this number (because as chart 2 below shows, people are not retiring as the popular propaganda goes: in fact labor participation in those aged 55 and over has been soaring as more and more old people have to work overtime, forget retiring), and you get 159.4 million: that is what the real labor force should be. The BLS reported one? 154.4 million: a tiny 5 million difference. Then add these people who the BLS is purposefully ignoring yet who most certainly are in dire need of labor and/or a job to the 12.758 million reported unemployed by the BLS and you get 17.776 million in real unemployed workers. What does this mean? That using just the BLS denominator in calculating the unemployed rate of 154.4 million, the real unemployment rate actually rose in January to 11.5%. Compare that with the BLS reported decline from 8.5% to 8.3%. It also means that the spread between the reported and implied unemployment rate just soared to a fresh 30 year high of 3.2%. And that is how with a calculator and just one minute of math, one strips away countless hours of BLS propaganda.

  4. Editor writes

    “But it’s worth noting that President Obama’s economic stimulus plan, the one which was supposed to keep unemployment down to 8%, has long run its course, and his second proposed jobs plan was killed in Congress . . . and now the economy is starting to create new jobs. ”

    Yorkshire writes

    “What does this mean? That using just the BLS denominator in calculating the unemployed rate of 154.4 million, the real unemployment rate actually rose in January to 11.5%. Compare that with the BLS reported decline from 8.5% to 8.3%. It also means that the spread between the reported and implied unemployment rate just soared to a fresh 30 year high of 3.2%.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/05/opinion/the-fatal-distraction.html

    —-
    Although you’d never know it listening to the ranters, the past year has actually been a pretty good test of the theory that slashing government spending actually creates jobs. The deficit obsession has blocked a much-needed second round of federal stimulus, and with stimulus spending, such as it was, fading out, we’re experiencing de facto fiscal austerity. State and local governments, in particular, faced with the loss of federal aid, have been sharply cutting many programs and have been laying off a lot of workers, mostly schoolteachers.
    —-
    I find it useful to think in terms of three questions: What should we be doing to create jobs? What will Republicans in Congress agree to? And given that political reality, what should the president propose?

    The answer to the first question is that we should have a lot of job-creating spending on the part of the federal government, largely in the form of much-needed spending to repair and upgrade the nation’s infrastructure. Oh, and we need more aid to state and local governments, so that they can stop laying off schoolteachers.

    But what will Republicans agree to? That’s easy: nothing. They will oppose anything Mr. Obama proposes, even if it would clearly help the economy — or maybe I should say, especially if it would help the economy, since high unemployment helps them politically.
    —-

  5. Miss Nova quotes the esteemed Paul Krugman:

    Although you’d never know it listening to the ranters, the past year has actually been a pretty good test of the theory that slashing government spending actually creates jobs.

    From the Bureau of Labor Statistics, we’ve seen 3,565,000 jobs created since January of 2011. Further, that means an additional 4,082,000 jobs were created in the private sector, while government jobs were slashed; this is a good thing. We are up to 83.4% of all non-farm, non-mility employees being in the private sector, up from 82.8% a year ago.

    Now, we’d love to see more job creation in the private sector, but the fact is that spending really hasn’t been cut. Total government spending, at all levels, for FY2011, was $6,048.6 billion, a $128.6 billion (2.2%) increase over FY2010′s $5,920.0 billion. We’re still in FY2012, so the numbers will probably change a bit, but projected total government spending in FY2012 is $6,215.1 billion, a $166.6 billion (2.8%) increase over FY2011. Dr Krugman’s statement that “the past year has actually been a pretty good test of the theory that slashing government spending actually creates jobs” would ring truer if we had actually “slashed” government spending. The most that can be said is that government spending for FY2011 rose at a very slightly lower rate (2.2%) than the rate of inflation (2.38%).

    Your editor would like to see the theory that slashing government spending would increase private sector job creation tested by actually slashing government spending.

  6. This blog owner would love to see people who quote the man (Krugman) who has already been smacked down by his own newspaper (the New York Times) for his faulty use of numbers and other statistics and trashed by an expert in his own field, and head of an Ivy League department (who called Krugman a “Nobel Prize-winning fraud”), actually quote someone who is, you know, respectable.

    But Krugman is in the tank for Leftists, and couldn’t tell the truth if his life depended on it, and Leftists are likewise in the tank for Krugman, so I don’t expect that to change anytime soon.

  7. Mr Hitchcock, Dr Krugman is who he is: an economist who is not actually responsible for anything, in complete disagreement with the people who actually are responsible for the states of their countries’ economies. Dr Krugman’s prescription, more and more government spending, is actually the thing that is responsible for the mess the European nations are in today: they have lived beyond their means for decades now, and their economies are being strangled by all of the debt they have accumulated. What Dr Krugman proposes is to do more of what got them into the mess they are in, yet, for some odd reason, some people take such proposals seriously.

  8. What Dr Krugman proposes is to do more of what got them into the mess they are in, yet, for some odd reason, some people take such proposals seriously.

    On the same wavelength as the other Nobel winner, BO.

  9. http://www.poynter.org/latest-news/mediawire/130485/claim-krugman-is-top-prognosticator-cal-thomas-is-the-worst/

    —-
    The top prognosticators – led by New York Times columnist Paul Krugman – scored above five points and were labeled “Good,” while those scoring between zero and five were “Bad.” Anyone scoring less than zero (which was possible because prognosticators lost points for inaccurate predictions) were put into “The Ugly” category. Syndicated columnist Cal Thomas came up short and scored the lowest of the 26.

    Even when the students eliminated political predictions and looked only at predictions for the economy and social issues, they found that liberals still do better than conservatives at prediction. After Krugman, the most accurate pundits were Maureen Dowd of The New York Times, former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi – all Democrats and/or liberals. Also landing in the “Good” category, however, were conservative columnists Kathleen Parker and David Brooks, along with Bush Administration Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson. Left-leaning columnist Eugene Robinson of The Washington Post rounded out the “good” list.

    Those scoring lowest – “The Ugly” – with negative tallies were conservative columnist Cal Thomas; U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC); U.S. Senator Carl Levin (D-MI); U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman, a McCain supporter and Democrat-turned-Independent from Connecticut; Sam Donaldson of ABC; and conservative columnist George Will.
    —-

  10. Krugman damned by faint praise:

    Following is an instructive paragraph from Anna Nova’s linked article which preceded the snippets she selected. It seems that Professor Krugman’s vaunted powers of prognostication may actually exceed 50/50.

    Now, a class at Hamilton College led by public policy professor P. Gary Wyckoff has analyzed the predictions of 26 prognosticators between September 2007 and December 2008. Their findings? Anyone can make as accurate a prediction as most of them if just by flipping a coin. (emphasis added)

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