April 3, 2009

Barack Obama’s Unprecedented Accomplishment

Barack Obama has done something no other president has done in the five months after his election.

He and his pals Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid laid the groundwork for this achievement back in June when they created what I have since last July been calling the POR (Pelosi-Obama-Reid) Economy, so it is fair to say that Obama’s accomplishment, spanning November 2008 through March 2009, belongs to him, with a heavy assist from his fellow party members.

It took a lot of hard work, perseverance, and persistence, but he and they have done it.

Obama is the first president to have five straight months of decline in real employment following his election.

We’re not talking about that seasonally adjusted stuff that gets reported every month and misinterpreted as if that is what actually happened. No-no-no. I’m referring to five straight months of decline in the number of Americans actually working, i.e., the not seasonally adjusted figures. Defying any and all seasonal factors that would work against this accomplishment, the economy on the ground has lost jobs in each and every one of the past five months:


You start to appreciate just how difficult this achievement was when you look at how large the job additions were during comparable months in 2004 through 2008.

It gets “better.” The real, on-the-ground job losses represent the only time in 70 years of history available at the Bureau of Labor Statistics that the real, on the ground, not seasonally adjusted economy has lost jobs for five consecutive months. The, only, time (click on graphic to see a full-size version in a separate window):


And of course, although I hope I’m wrong, the losing streak may not stop at five.

It’s conceivable that March’s on the ground loss of 58,000 might be changed in subsequent revisions, but that seems highly doubtful. January’s original seasonally adjusted -598,000 went to -741,000 after subsequent revisions. February’s first seasonally adjusted revision released today had no change from the original -651,000. A March reversal of +59,000 or more in the next two not seasonally adjusted revisions seems pretty unlikely. Even if that happens, no other president has seen the economy lose jobs on the ground for even four consecutive months after his election.

Is anyone foolish enough to believe that the applauding establishment media will take note of what has really happened with jobs on the ground since Dear Leader’s election?

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

The March Employment Situation Report (040309): The POR Economy, aka The POR Recession, March-es On

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:33 am

This one, I suspect, won’t be pretty.

In the run-up:

Here is the actual intro from the Bureaus of Labor Statistics (bold is mine):

Nonfarm payroll employment continued to decline sharply in March (-663,000), and the unemployment rate rose from 8.1 to 8.5 percent, the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor reported today. Since the recession began in December 2007, 5.1 million jobs have been lost, with almost two-thirds (3.3 million) of the decrease occurring in the last 5 months. In March, job losses were large and widespread across the major industry sectors.

Those “last 5 months” just so happen to be the same 5 months since the country learned who its next president would be.

The POR (Pelosi-Obama-Reid) Economy, now known as The POR Recession As Normal People Define It, courtesy of Nancy Pelosi, Barack Obama, and Harry Reid since June of last year, marches on.

Thanks, guys.

A closer look may come later.


UPDATE: Since The POR Recession As Normal People Define It began in July (normal people look at recessions on a quarterly basis), over 4.3 million seasonally adjusted jobs have been lost:


UPDATE 2: Barack Obama’s Unprecedented Accomplishment.

Latest Pajamas Media Post (‘Social Security Crisis To Arrive Six Years Early’) Is Up

Filed under: Economy,Soc. Sec. & Retirement,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:18 am

It’s here.

It will go up at BizzyBlog on Sunday morning (link won’t work until then) when the blackout expires.


I’m posting the two graphics from that column to extend points made in the column:



The first graphic, straight from publicly available information at the Congressional Budget Office, shows the amount of money — $2,331.6 billion — Uncle Sam has taken from Social Security through Democratic and Republican administrations and Congresses to fund the rest of the government during the past 23 years. Technically, Uncle Sam has “borrowed” it.

The second graphic’s original purpose was to show how February “went negative” (i.e., tax receipts were less than benefit payouts plus expenses).

But it also shows that total “assets” (i.e., the balance of the “trust fund”) are $2.434 billion. That amount is only about $100 billion more than the amount of money Uncle Sam has borrowed from it.

This means that over 95% of the so-called “assets” of the “trust fund” consist of IOUs from the rest of the government, which is itself over $11 trillion in debt.

Now that we’re only a year or two away from when current operations of Social Security “go negative” on an annual basis, as described in the column, Social Security is going to have to turn those IOUs into cash. One of three things will have to happen:

  • The rest of the government will have to borrow more money to come up with the cash.
  • The rest of the government will have to raise taxes.
  • The rest of the government will have to decide to cut Social Security benefits.

Oh, there is a fourth possibility: Ben Bernanke can just print more money and inflate the currency.

Before the POR (Pelosi-Obama-Reid) Economy, now known as the POR Recession As Normal People Define It, began, Social Security projections showed benefits outstripping costs by over $100 billion a year during much of the 2020s and 2030s. Now those large system deficits are on track to arrive many years sooner.

Those who claimed “there is no crisis” during the past quarter-century since the Greenspan Commission supposedly “fixed” Social Security (all it did was raise taxes and push the retirement age up by a whole two years — big whoop) were lying all along. The lies turned into super-sized whoppers during the past decade as the impending problems became ever more obvious. Those who knew the truth and lied anyway need to explain to us, and especially our kids, grandkids, and generations yet unborn, who will have to bear the burden of their lies, why they did it.

Positivity: Snowmachiners rescued near Bethel

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 7:20 am

From Camp Denali, Alaska:

Updated: 04/01/2009 11:42:31 AM AKDT

The Alaska Army National Guard’s 207th Aviation out of Bethel successfully recovered two lost snowmachiners 43-miles southwest of Bethel near Tuntuliak, Tuesday.
The two men were traveling on snowmachines from Pilot Station to Bethel when they got lost in a snow storm and veered off course. Alaska Sate Troopers began organizing a search for the missing snowmachiners on Sunday, however due to difficult weather conditions and limited resources, AST called the 11th Rescue Coordination Center at 10:15 a.m. on Monday to ask for assistance.

“Because the reduced visibility, caused by dense clouds and blowing snow, created difficulty with flying the Alaska State Trooper’s fixed wing aircraft, they needed the assistance of the Army Guard out of Bethel to put more eyes in the sky,” said 1st Lt. Peter Pagni, an Alaska Army National Guard pilot.

At approximately noon the RCC dispatched a UH-60 Black Hawk out of Bethel to assist in the search and rescue of the two snowmachiners.

After hours of searching, between Pilot Station and Bethel, 207th aviators suspended their search until the next morning.

At 11:23 a.m., Tuesday, the 207th Aviation launched again and located the two men over 6 miles from Tuntuliak after a commercial aircraft reported seeing two people walking through the tundra approximately 43-miles southwest of Bethel.

“They were way west of where they should have been, dehydrated and fatigued,” Pagni said. “Some how, they just skipped right over Bethel and several other villages during the storm.”

The Army Guard Soldiers loaded the two men onto the Black Hawk and transported them back to Bethel where they were released uninjured to Alaska State Troopers. …..

Go here for the rest of the story.