The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

Month: October 2012

Forest for the trees on the job #s

Jack Welch was wrong that the BLS fixed the job #s.  But so what?  He was right on the key point: there is no way in HELL that the economy produced 873,000 jobs, as per the Household Survey.  Ordinary people know this, and all the pundits who argued about whether the BLS fixed the # missed the point: the number does not reflect people’s experience.  If the economy really produced 873K jobs, it’d be the start of a boom. It’s not, and everyone knows it’s not.  To ordinary people, that number is a LIE, and it does not matter if it was fixed, or if it is a statistical artifact.

Obama is unpopular.  Very unpopular.  If Romney wasn’t a horrible candidate, largely because he has to pander to the crazies in the Republican party, he’d be toast.  The reason Obama is a lousy candidate is that the economy is trash.  In absolute numbers, jobs have not recovered.  In relative terms, they aren’t even close. 93% of all gains in the economy have gone to the top 1%.

The US economy, if you are an ordinary person, is trash.  It has never recovered.  Given Obama’s policies, it will not recover.  The same is true of Romney, who is promising an economic apocalypse, but people already know that Obama is a failure.  Romney might be worse, but they might decide to take a chance on him anyway, knowing that the status quo is permanent stagnation.

Ordinary people have seen their wealth crash, their wages decline, and the number of jobs available dive.  Because the job market is so horrible, bosses are free to treat work like trash, so their jobs are much more unpleasant than they were.

This is a direct result of Obama’s policies. It was predictable, it was predicted.  He is responsible for not fixing the economy.  That was his job.  He failed (too busy bombing weddings and funerals, and making individual decisions about who to assassinate.)

Drones are not weapons of the powerful

If this is true, the drone shot down by Israel was from Hezbollah.

Drones are cheap.  They are just big radio controlled planes.  They cost nothing compared to a jet fighter, and the technology is not hard.  Islamic Jihad claims they might have one (who knows).  Hezbollah is sophisticated, they built their own telecom network, for example, and tapped into Israeli soldiers cell-phones in the last war.  They won the e-lint battle in that war.

Drones will spread, they are a poor man’s air force.  They suck compared to jets, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, but they are cheap, easy to make and easy to operate.  This is only the beginning.

(MFI has up a commentary worth reading, as well.)


The post on jobs #s has been withdrawn for the moment, since I didn’t notice I was using Current Population Survey #s where I should have used  Employment survey #s.  Ouch. I am officially embarrassed.  At least it was only up for a few minutes, though the internet is forever, as we all know.

Anyway, for those who read it, the numbers are approximately correct, the percentage #s are off, and the current population survey showed 873,000 jobs gained last month as opposed to 114K on the employment survey (this is why I don’t use the CPS. Anyone who believes the economy actually added 873K jobs is delusional.  That doesn’t mean they’re cooked, but they are a statistical artifact.)  I’d recalculate, but it’s 3:36 in the morning and my brain is fried.  Some day soon, probably.  My apologies.

The tl;dr version is this.  114 thousand is not a good jobs report and to regain all jobs in any time frame short of 10 years to a generation, you need steady reports over 200K, and ideally over 300K.  From the employment survey, not the population survey. 😉

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