Tuesday, April 24, 2012

President Obama: Muslim and Job Killer?

I respect those who vote Republican, too.
But I don't think most of the recent
job losses are the fault of Mr. Obama.
It's a slow day in education. So I've been checking out a few Facebook pages; and I notice a certain degree of unrest among conservative friends--and I want them to be happy.

I like to check out Governor John Kasich's wall, for example, and today he's highlighting his success bringing jobs back to Ohio and supporters are calling President Obama an illegal alien, a polecat, a Muslim, and just about everything except a Mennonite. 

President Obama, they say, is a job exterminator.

I love my friends, conservative, Tea Partier, libertarian, liberal, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist and Jew alike. I think God loves Mitt Romney and Mormons and Sarah Palin and atheists, too.

When I checked the Romney Facebook page I saw more complaints about unemployment--and all of those complaints aimed at the "Kenyan" in the White House. So I decided to do what any liberal might do. I decided to see if I could find a simple graph or two.

Now I’m trying to think like a conservative. If we go back to January 1981, the unemployment rate in the United States was 7.5%. I think fair-minded individuals might remember that the economy was in terrible condition at that time. But job losses soared while President Reagan was in office, the unemployment rate peaking at 10.8% in November 1982.

In fact, it took Mr. Reagan his entire first term to reduce unemployment, so that by January 1985, the rate had fallen again to 7.3%, a stunning recovery of +.2% in four years.

By the time he left office, however, he had “tamed” the problem, reducing unemployment to 5.4% (January 1989). In other words, the last great Republican president saw unemployment balloon by 3.3% and then drop, in the end, by 2.1% over eight years.

MR. REAGAN 1981-1989):  2.1% NET JOBS IMPROVEMENT.

Under President George H. W. Bush, unemployment surged again, to 7.8% in the summer of 1992. By January 1993, when Bill Clinton took office, the level had fallen to 7.3%. Still, we lost almost all the ground made up under Mr. Reagan. Again, fair-minded people might argue that Mr. Bush had bad luck and that the economy was turning as he left office.

BUSH 41 (1989-1993): -1.9% DECLINE IN U.S. EMPLOYMENT.

During President Clinton’s two terms in office, the unemployment rate fell to 4.2% in January 2001. We even had a budget surplus—something every Republican born since 1919 now claims he really, really, really, and I mean really, likes.

CLINTON'S TIME IN OFFICE (INTERNS ADMITTEDLY NOT ALWAYS SAFE) (1993-2001):  3.1% IMPROVEMENT.

George W. Bush came next, saw unemployment spike to more than 6%, recovered, saw it fall to 4.4%, and then, Bush Tax Cuts and all, the economy tanked in 2008. By the time Barrack Obama took office the unemployment rate was 7.8%.

GEORGE W. BUSH (2001-2009): -3.6% DECLINE IN EMPLOYMENT.

I doubt anyone, even Dale Robertson, the founder of the Tea Party Movement, would try to claim that President Obama inherited a healthy economy, or a federal budget that was even close to balancing. Leaving that deficit problem aside, however, the unemployment rate rose to 10% in October 2009, similar to but not as terrible as the rise during President Reagan’s first four years in the Oval Office.

As of March 2012, the rate has dropped once more to 8.2%, a figure lower than at any time since February 2009, when Mr. Obama had been in office less than two weeks. So, even if you’re a Republican and want to claim that all job losses since the moving van brought Sasha and Malia's books and dolls to the White House are the fault of the current chief executive, you might have to wonder, “Isn’t everything we’re going to have to do from now to the next election and probably deep into the next administration to fix the jobs problem really just undoing damage done by a previous president?

OBAMA IN OFFICE (JANUARY 20, 2009 to present): -.4%, IF WE START WITH JANUARY FIGURES. 

If you're a Republican, and cut him even the slightest break, and start with February, 2009, Mr. Obama is  ALREADY IN +.1 TERRITORY. One more tenth of a percent and he equals the first term success of the paladin of conservatives everywhere, the almost-sainted Mr. Reagan.

Again, all the right wing has to do, if they don't mind facing reality, would be to check the graphs.

52 comments:

  1. Thank you. It is nice to hear the voice of reason from someone who has done his research.

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  2. Thanks for stating facts and not spewing forth the nonsense that has become fodder for those against our president.

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  3. funny how obama is never judged for for 3 years in office ,,,is been a joke to say the lease ,,if he were white you would not care about him and you know it ,,

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    1. I'm sorry, Mr. Anonymous. I was not aware that Mr. Obama's skin color had any affect on unemployment. Maybe hair texture affects the tides. Maybe if you spell his middle name backwards it proves he's from Kenya. I'm not interested in his skin color, yours, our any other American's.

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    2. Wow, obsessed with race much, ANONYMOUS?? How does that even factor in to this discussion? Of course, if you're a RACIST, it factors into EVERYTHING, doesn't it? Don't try to spread your bigotry around here.

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    3. ....is been a joke to say the lease.... really?

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    4. To say the lease you sound very ignorant of the facts and our language.I heared during ww2 they used to trip up nazi spys this way Adoulf.

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  4. Awesome work, teach!

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    1. Good work teach I love the truth!

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  5. i still blame busch and obama inherited busches problems you can haye him i'm voting for him

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    1. You know Busch is a beer right?

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    2. U kno dat old sayin wen u buy a used car, ur buyin somebody elses problems. Well the same with the Presidents the current President gets wat the former President left off from.

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    3. Or this person is just trolling.

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  6. Yes but sadly none of them can get past the latest headline on the faux news channel, but these are the facts of the matter. In fact I just recently ran across this man's film, http://teapartycult.com/videos/see-the-film-right-now/ in which he details all these statistics as well. But he exposes a greater problem in the republican, tea party, and teapublican ideology-- that being the fact that only one republican president that we have had in this country since Herbert Hoover left office with something like an unemployment below 5.4%-- and that one exception to this rule was Reagan.

    But I would liketo also point out that Reagan through his atheist advisor, Ay Rand, appointed Alan Greenspan who Rand mentored. All three of these people were wholly responsible for the 2008 market crash. In fact it was due to deregulation of the markets and a few other changes that even allowed companies to trade these financial instruments known as derivatives. And by the way Bill Clinton was complicit is allowing this to happen, as when Brooksley Born blew the whistle on some derivatives traders nearly ten years to the date before the 2008 market collapse, he demanded her resignation!

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    1. The thing is though, Clinton warned Bush that policy changes needed to happen or the economy would tank. Bush didn't listen, economy tanked. It's not Clinton's fault Bush didn't listen.

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  7. "is been a joke to say the lease"........This is an educators page, the LEAST you could do is use spell check when you make a racial comment.

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    1. Thank you, " to say the lease" was absolutely killing me......

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    2. Unfortunately, spell check wouldn't have caught that, since lease is actually a word. There just isn't an "ignorance check".

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    3. You got it! Someone needs to invent "Ignorance Check" and quickly. Half of the garbage I see online wouldn't be there. "What a wonderful world this could be"

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  8. Excellent work researching and finding facts. Unfortunately, as you can see, facts are not part of the Teapublican requirements.

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  9. I often wonder how something so simplistic, truthful and logical evades the conservatives...then I remember...blinded by religion...another simplistic and truthful message twisted and misinterpreted.

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  10. Unfortunately, facts seldom sway zealots. Witness the drive to have Creationism (religion) forced into the school curriculum instead of scientific method.

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    1. Just as long as we are only using facts, I believe it's Intelligent Design Theory to be taught alongside of Evolutionary Theory. The scientific method has never been under attack.

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    2. "Intelligent Design Theory"? Really? How is that different from "Creationism"? What intelligence besides the Christian "God" do they credit for our existence?

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    3. @Anonymous #2, The problem is that ID aka creationism isn't be taught along side evolutionary theory. Rather it is being taught as a competing theory. Even though it hasn't gone through any of the scientific vetting to be considered a theory. Right now it is a hypothesis being taught as a theory. It's entire goal is to undermine evolutionary science. Which is entirely unnecessary, if these clowns decided to try to interpret their scriptures around the known world rather than try to invent some nonsense pseudo-science it would save them so much time and energy that they could devote to other things more important to them.

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    4. NIcely put Matt.

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  11. Unfortunately your "facts" don't take into account the methodology behind how the unemployment rate is calculated. I know you are not dumb (maybe intellectually dishonest) so I'm sure that many of you know that the unemployment rate does not include individuals who have stopped looking for work or have gone back to school nor individuals who are underemployed. This makes the unemployment rate not a very good indicated of the health of the economy. However, some of our more reliable statistics paint a scarier picture about employment. The Department of Labor Statistics' U-6 rate which includes the unemployed and underemployed has stood around 15 percent for the last year. Other statistics show that the real unemployment rate is somewhere around 22%. DoL statistics also show that the length of unemployment has doubled since the recession started. This isn't to say that its Obama's fault but things haven't gotten any better. And what separates him from Reagan or Clinton or even Bush 41 is that they had actual plans to offer, not just platitudes. I know there is gridlock in Congress, but if there wasn't, he still would have nothing of substance to offer (except maybe more "stimulus," misguided bailouts, or another Case-For-Clunkers). In fact, I'm shocked that liberals stand behind this guy. He is a corporatist, he has kept us in these stupid wars, and has eroded our civil liberties just as much if not worse than George Dubya. I'm not saying go vote for Romney but is this the best you have?

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    1. One can only say so much in a blog entry. So, I'm not sure why you'd hint at my "intellectual dishonesty."

      I certainly do get tired of shallow analysis: attacks on Mr. Obama because he "doesn't have a birth certificate," "he's a communist," "he's going to let terrorists win," "he took 34 ships to visit India," and more.

      Any threat to civil liberties I take seriously, as almost every liberal I've ever known does. I've always been shocked, for example, that the idea Mr. Obama is a "Muslim" would even matter. The last time I looked at the U. S. Constitution, religious freedom was guaranteed to all.

      If you are a friend of civil liberties--for all--then we see eye to eye on that.

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    2. He wasn't referring to any of the Fox talking points in regards to erosion of civil liberties. Rather I believe he was getting at the spineless signing notes that Obama left on the most recent NDAA. Where he didn't agree with provisions and wouldn't use them, but had no problems signing them into law to allow administrations in the future to use them however they see fit.

      The point is, that Obama campaigns as a liberal and progressive populist, but governs as a corpratist. Any time that he gives up the farm before negotiation starts his excuse is that his hands were tied.

      Though the reason why liberals back Obama is they have no other choice. We can vote our conscience and split the vote between the democratic candidate and the truely liberal candidate forcing both to lose to the republican. Or we can simply not vote, which works in the republican's favor as well. So we have to swallow our pride and vote for the lesser evil.

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    3. Matt, I don't like some of the trends I see in the ability of government to intrude on privacy; I agree that all of us, of any political persuasion, or none, should be leery.

      I don't like the recent Supreme Court decision to allow strip searches even for minor offenses, for example. And the growing capacities in electronic surveillance are a threat to us no matter who we might elect. In any case, I usually blog about teaching.

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    4. So let me get this straight: It is unfair to compare the unemployment rate between Reagan and Obama because it leaves out the underemployed and those not looking for work?

      And somehow, under Reagan this was not the same?

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    5. Quite a bit of verbiage, 112. (Mine eyes glaze over). As to wondering whether Obama was the best Dems could find (I'd have preferred Hil, or Richardson, in '08), the plain fact is that Mitt is the best the GOP can find, and 60% per cent of them don't particularly care for him

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    6. On coming across this discussion on teaching, unemployment, and Obama, I still haven't seen/heard anything on the issue of technology. What part is technology playing in the unemployment debate. If efficiency is allowing a company to perform with one associate versus twelve, and one thinks it's a bad thing, then that's the problematic that should be discussed. The only reason why the education system hasn't gone competely online is because it would add to unemployment. I always say, "The eight-track tape is not coming back." One cannot be upset with efficiency.

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  12. I agree with Shawnboy 112, and I am one of those people that was layed off and retired early, rather than draw unemployment at 65. I worked for 47 years without a layoff until the current president and company destroyed our economy, perhaps for good. I believe we need a change, and now is the time. Four more years of these idiots, and yes, I am saying that Obama is an idiot. Actually was not an experienced leader at any level prior to his election in 2008. I am tired of his "I am better than you." attitude. I believe we should begin kicking anyone in congress with more than eight years as an elected offical, out of office, and the president out now. Am I upset about the last three years? You bet I am! I have relatives who I love dearly that need to wake up soon and be counted as Americans, not as Democrats or Republicans. We only have one choice this election, and taht is Mit, but that does not mean we have to keep him either, after one term. I do not want to see us become socialist like the European nations. Ask any friend from Britain or Canada about state-run medical care. You will not like what you hear.

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    1. @Rodney..I have lived in the UK for 14 years, and now in Germany...Ill take the Socialist European model ANYTIME over the USA wild west style of capitalism. And I don't need to ask a friend,I live here and am enjoying the benefits of living in a social democracy.
      Perhaps you should get a Passport, or at least do some thorough research before spewing this ignorant rubbish.

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    2. Mr. Romney seems like a nice enough man; as a liberal, I support the right of people of all religions to run for office. I'd like him to say to some of the most hateful elements of the right wing, "Well, you know, even if Mr. Obama WAS a Muslim, he'd still be protected in all his rights and privileges under the U. S. Constitution.

      As a liberal, I support the rights of all.

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    3. @Rodney, If you have problems with people who don't have proven leadership experience why are you behind Romney? Massachusetts had a horrible deficit and unemployment rate when Romney was governor. Also at Bain capital he killed more jobs or sent them overseas than he created. When Romney would take over a company, he would max out the companies credit lines, pocket the money and leave the company dead in the water. How do you think he would run the country based on his previous experience in the private sector?

      What we need is a President / Congress / Senate that is willing to right the sinking ship, rather than auction off the life boats like the more recent ones have been doing. Austerity should be used when the economy is good, not when it is failing. A federal job is still a paying job that puts money into the economy. A president's job shouldn't be placating corporations that have no intentions of creating jobs with more corporate welfare. Rather he should be offering the right incentives for them to create jobs (all of the multi-national corporations in Saudi Arabia have no issues with paying every cent of their taxes and they don't complain about it.)

      If what Mitt said is true, that corporations are people. What do you do to "people" who jeopardize national security to the extent that these corporations have?

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    4. The Canadians and Europeans lovee their socialized healthcare.

      Incase you didn't hear, because I know it wasn't reported on fox, people across the pond were demonstrating in favor of their system because you people were demonizing it.

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    5. Did you ever ask your supposed European friends, who couldn't afford private insurance, whether they disliked the NHS (British Healthcare)???

      STOP CALLING EUROPEAN ECONOMIES SOCIALIST!!! We are capitalist welfarist's at best, and not immune to the predatory capitalism rampant in your country!

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  13. I really hate to be a d*ck, but there is a difference in percentage of change and percentage points... Otherwise, good post!

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    1. I know; I didn't want to make the post seem too convoluted.

      Besides, I'm just a humble blogger, not a statistician. Figuring out percentages in jobs gained would be a nightmare, with too many variables.

      I just wanted to give the right-wing folks simple facts and figures.

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  14. To Shawnboy112: I can see where you are coming from, however you are also being misleading about the methodology which is clearly explained here: http://www.bls.gov/cps/cps_htgm.htm
    The examples you give are actually far and few between. Example: Most of us have to look for work, or we just become homeless. Students still need jobs and the methodology finds this out QUITE accurately. I'm underemployed, however I have other ways of supplementing my income. I think that YOU are being intellectually dishonest. Now, I don't disagree that Obama is center right, however he has, and by no stretch of the imagination, been a much better president than George W. Bush could ever hope to be. There are plenty of other things I would love to "pick at" like your statement "Other statistics..."(which or where are they?) seems disingenuous and I have limited time since I'm underemployed and a student. :)

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    1. Center right? Wow! I guess it IS all about perspective...

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  15. I appreciate the analysis and great points, but I must know, what sources were used for this piece? Peer review is always a good thing.

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    1. Click on the link where it says, simple graph. It really didn't take much effort...just a look at a basic chart or two.

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  16. Obama is center-right? *LMAO*

    Now I have another place to come when I want the perspective of the extreme left. And to think this is what is teaching kids in public schools? One more reason mine never went to the camps.

    As far as "unemployment, if one actually looks at the figures one sees Obama has not reduced unemployment at all. Length of unemployment is either at or near the highest point since the depths of the Great Depression. The current numbers(publicized ones) are dropping because only those drawing unemployment/searching for work thru government channels are counted. The long termers are simply no longer looking and thus no longer being counted on the common chart. Look at the real unemployment, U5 and U6 numbers, and you'll see 12 to 15% with only a minimal drop.

    Couple other bits of reality to interject here: Another marker that this site is wildly out in left field: There was no Clinton surplus. There was the prediction of a future surplus based on carefully massaged figures anticipating no changes in future growth or major negative events. That's it. A prediction based on fantasy. Then 9/11 happened and somehow the result of that, at least partially the failure of the Clinton Admin, became Bush's fault. Sorry, no. Just like the housing collapse, rooted in 90's Democrat legislation blindly protected in the 2000's by Barney Frank, Obama and other hacks, your partisanship can't change reality.

    And lastly, why are you fixated on unemployment with regards to Obama? From his taxes to his health scam to his class and race division and beyond there are almost no limits to the reasons people want this clown out of office. Unemployment is a side issue for most people so maybe you should try and broaden your perspective. Or not. As long as the SOB is gone in November nobody really cares.

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    1. Scott, you seem to leaping to all kinds of conclusions here about what kind of teacher I was; so I'll just say I told student to think for themselves on every issue, whether they agreed with me or not. It's a free country, we live in and that's why I love it; and liberals have as much desire to see it remain that was as you. Feel free to click on the chart I used. It really doesn't come down to politics at that point. It comes down to math.

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  17. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CZ-4gnNz0vc

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  18. Hi John... I just came across your blog today; I am also a former teacher. I write a blog that is (partially) dedicated to jobs and unemployment numbers.

    There are two different counts of employment/unemployment; one is the unemployment rate, which you discuss here, but the other is the "jobs number". These two tend, over time, to rise and fall inversely, but they do follow each other. (In other words, more jobs, less unemployment, and vice verse.)

    The highest job creation rate (as a percent) of any recent president came under Carter's term. Not only that, but the unemployment rate had been relatively low during Carter's term and only went up in late 79 and early 80 in response to the situation in Iran. Both the unemployment rate and the inflation rate were actually DECLINING by the time Reagan took office. So Reagan, unlike Obama, inherited a DECLINING unemployment and inflation rate. It's really unclear to me as to whether we really needed that Reagan-created recession to get the economy squared away.

    In any event, I have more numbers about Reagan and Carter at my blog if you are interested.

    And I notice that you have patience with a number of

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    1. Ah...your last sentence was cut off. I think we agree, "Voodoo economics" on the right hasn't worked too well. I compare the situation President Obama inherited to a plane put into a crash dive by the Republicans. It took tremendous effort to pull the economy out of a death spiral. Now the GOP complains because he didn't save all the passengers they almost killed fast enough.

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