FiveThirtyEight (newly added to my blogroll) has a solid rundown on the big picture on employment, unemployment, and job growth chock-full of graphs, charts, and numbers. The bottom line is that jobs are being created but at a rate just a tiny bit greater than the “natural increase”, i.e. not fast enough to bring the millions of people who lost their jobs in the late recession back to work, and the jobs that are being created don’t pay as well as the jobs that were lost. Spin this as you like.
Here are the president’s priorities on jobs:
President Obama will continue calling on Congress to:
1: Raise the minimum wage to $10.10 for all American workers.
2: Ensure women get equal pay for equal work by passing paycheck fairness
3: Extend emergency unemployment insurance for Americans who are looking for work.
4: Reward hard work by expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit.
5: Remove retirement tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans and improve them for the middle class.
6: Protect LGBT workers by passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.
and here’s the statement on the economy from the Republican National Committee’s web site:
We believe in the power and opportunity of America’s free-market economy. We believe in the importance of sensible business regulations that promote confidence in our economy among consumers, entrepreneurs and businesses alike. We oppose interventionist policies that put the federal government in control of industry and allow it to pick winners and losers in the marketplace.
If there is something in either of those statements that will put 10 million people back to work in something short of geological time, I’m missing it.
It certainly appears to me as though either neither party is particularly interested in the millions who are out of work or neither party has any ideas and both want to change the subject.