The Numbers Tell Us All We Need to Know

Commentary by Jim Spence - The United States population is larger than ever. Yesterday’s release of the August job statistics by the Labor Department confirmed what 70% of Americans already know. The nation is headed in the wrong direction.
The U.S. Labor Department reported that the nation’s labor participation rate fell again last month. It now stands at a thirty-one year low. Not since the days when Jimmy Carter left the White House have jobs been so hard to come by. The record low labor participation rate was fueled by another 368,000 Americans simply giving up their efforts to find jobs. The latest job statistics contained more bad news. Previous estimates of the number of jobs added to the economy in July were lowered too. With so many people no longer counted as seeking work, the curious unemployment rate math actually allowed the Department of Labor to lower the reported unemployment "rate" to 8.1%.
More disturbing than all of these dismal statistics is the total number of Americans eligible to work who are NOT working. That number rose to an all-time record of almost 89 million people. Despite the largest population in U.S. history, in the aggregate, the number of people working in the United States fell 119,000 in August versus July.
All of this news spells even more trouble for the nation’s pitiful finances. Fewer people working means there will be fewer people paying taxes. Even more people than ever are likely to apply for food stamps and other forms of taxpayer funded assistance. Only one day after the Democratic convention came to a close these fresh job loss numbers provide indisputable proof that Barack Obama has presided over a relentless decline in the labor participation rate. During the Obama tenure the average unemployment rate in the U.S. has been 9%.
Next Tuesday U.S. citizens will remember the day eleven years ago when the twin towers fell in New York and the Pentagon was hit by a commercial jet going 600 miles an hour. What Americans should remember, simply for performance comparison purposes, is that George W. Bush inherited an economy that was suffering from the breaking of the dot com bubble. Less than nine months after he took the oath of office the 9-11 attacks brought the U.S. economy to a standstill. Despite the pressure those historic events put on the employment record of George W. Bush, the job picture from 2001 - 2008 stands in stark contrast to the American experience today after four years of Obama policies. Despite the dot com bubble bust and the 9-11 nightmare, America's labor participation rate under Bush was dramatically higher than today's thirty-one year lows. The average unemployment rate during the two Bush terms was just 5.26%. Under Bill Clinton it was 5.2%. Don't wait around for CNN, CBS, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, or NPR to provide the proper context for the current job numbers and expose the utter failure of the Obama policies. Every media outlet except Fox News is populated by journalists who are pulling for the re-election of Obama no matter what his results are.