Wag The Economist
We've all heard the prevailing wisdom that no President has ever been re-elected with an unemployment rate above 8%. So is anyone surprised that, right on cue, the government jobs report squeaks just under that symbolic 8% threshold, conveniently one month before the election?
Fresh off Obama's embarrassing performance in the debate last Wednesday, otherwise known as the "debacle in Denver", these supposedly neutral government reports couldn't have come at a better time for the President. His campaign could switch gears from making excuses for Obama's 90-minute broadcast meltdown to reiterating the fantasy that their economic plans were finally beginning to work. It's too bad actually, because the post-debate excuses were almost as entertaining as the actual event.
Unfortunately, there is no entertainment value in the human misery these labor statistics convey. Even if you accept the new 7.8% unemployment numbers, they are based upon assumptions that reflect an America in profound distress. The total unemployment and underemployment rate (the U6 computation) remains the same, a debilitating 14.7%.
Likewise, the labor force participation rate has not changed and is stuck at a 30-year low. If this labor force participation rate was the same size as when Obama took office, the unemployment rate would be 10.7%. It should be no cause for celebration that millions of Americans have given up looking for work.
So the politicking and spinning will go on, obscuring the high cost of this Administration's economic and leadership failures. What is especially troubling is that in Mitt Romney we have perhaps the most qualified person ever to run for President and fix these problems. As long as the voters permit these "Wag The Dog" or "Wag The Economist" campaigns to dumb down our public discourse, then we will continue to suffer with a partisan, incompetent government diminishing the American dream.