January 31, 2012

AP’s Borenstein Insists on Citing Guide to Year’s Coldest Days as Proof of Global Warming

GlobalWarmingEven when someone who helped prepare a new guide for gardeners on the coldest temperatures seen annually in different parts of the country says that their output doesn’t fit the global warming template, an AP reporter decides that it really does.

In preparing his write-up last week on the release of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s revised the official guide for gardeners, the Associated Press’s Seth Borenstein, the infamous writer of reports claiming that the Climategate scandals were no big deal, buried the following quote from a USDA official at Paragraph 17 of 24:

USDA spokeswoman Kim Kaplan, who was part of the map team, repeatedly tried to distance the new zones on the map from global warming. She said that while much of the country is in warmer zones, the map “is simply not a good instrument” to demonstrate climate change because it is based on just the coldest days of the year.

Seems pretty clear to me. Something which only addresses “the coldest (few) days” in a year doesn’t have much relevance to what temperatures are like during the rest of the year.

But not to good old Seth, whose under-the-breath response to Ms. Kaplan must have been along the lines of “What the heck do you know?” Borenstein almost waxed poetic about the impact of global warming on the gardening guide:

New map for what to plant reflects global warming

Global warming is hitting not just home, but garden. The color-coded map of planting zones often seen on the back of seed packets is being updated by the government, illustrating a hotter 21st century.

It’s the first time since 1990 that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has revised the official guide for the nation’s 80 million gardeners, and much has changed. Nearly entire states, such as Ohio, Nebraska and Texas, are in warmer zones.

The new guide, unveiled Wednesday at the National Arboretum, arrives just as many home gardeners are receiving their seed catalogs and dreaming of lush flower beds in the spring.

It reflects a new reality: The coldest day of the year isn’t as cold as it used to be, so some plants and trees can now survive farther north.

“People who grow plants are well aware of the fact that temperatures have gotten more mild throughout the year, particularly in the wintertime,” said Boston University biology professor Richard Primack. “There’s a lot of things you can grow now that you couldn’t grow before.”

… The 1990 map was based on temperatures from 1974 to 1986, the new map from 1976 to 2005. The nation’s average temperature from 1976 to 2005 was two-thirds of a degree higher than it was during the old time period, according to the National Climatic Data Center.

Wow. A whole two-thirds of a degree. Would somebody break it to poor Seth that there hasn’t been any global warming since 1997?

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

AP Headline For CBO’s Awful 10-Year Projections: ‘Deficit to Dip to $1.1T’

Oh joy.

Today at the Associated Press, aka the Administration’s Press, in response to the Congressional Budget Office’s release today of an awful 10-year baseline outlook, Andrew Taylor made sure that his first paragraph was only about the projected “dip” in the fiscal 2012 deficit, and dedicated his second paragraph to the bad things that will happen if “the Bush tax cuts” are extended and Congress fails to live within “tight” spending “caps” (when did those happen?). Towards the end he spoke of the deficit-cutting wonders ending “the Bush tax cuts” might bring about. What follows are the first two paragraphs of Taylor’s report, followed by the “Bush tax cut” passage:

Federal budget deficit to dip to $1.1T, CBO says

The government will run a $1.1 trillion deficit in the fiscal year that ends in September, a slight dip from last year but still very high by any measure, according to a budget report released Tuesday.

The Congressional Budget Office report also says that annual deficits will remain in the $1 trillion range for the next several years if Bush-era tax cuts slated to expire in December are extended, as commonly assumed – and if Congress is unable to live within the tight “caps” the lawmakers themselves placed on agency budgets last year.

… The CBO report shows that the deficit dilemma would largely be solved if the tax cuts enacted in 2001 and 2003 – and renewed in 2010 through the end of this year – were allowed to lapse. Under that scenario, the deficit would drop to $585 billion in 2013 and to $220 billion in 2017.

But expiration of those tax cuts would slam the economy, CBO said, bringing growth down to a paltry 1.1 percent next year. However, the economy would quickly rebound in 2014 and beyond.

Really? Taylor does not explain exactly why that would happen, especially given the track record of how tax increases (which is what ending “the Bush tax cuts” really amounts to) fail to bring in the anticipated extra tax collections static analysis (which is primarily what CBO does, assuming no behavior change as a result of higher rates) would predict. The reason they don’t is that growth (i.e., the “rebound”) ends up being less than what was expected.

Taylor conveys far more certainty about the outcome than is warranted in the circumstances.

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

Romney Wins Big in Florida

Filed under: Taxes & Government — Tom @ 9:28 am


Boy, are we in trouble.


UPDATE, Feb. 1: It’s early, etc., but if Romney gets the nomination, his chances of winning will entirely hinge on the economy being so awful — and being seen that way, despite establishment press smiley-faces — that voters are willing to risk literally anyone but Obama. There will be a wave of disgust with the available choices not seen since Nixon v. McGovern.

That economy will have to be so bad that it outweighs the tidal wave of legitimate negatives Team Obama will throw at Romney.

As noted, we (i.e., the people of the USA) are in trouble.

UPDATE 2, Feb. 1: Bill Jacobsen at Legal Insurrection had the stomach to look at the details, and they are not comforting. Bottom line: “In counties where Gingrich did better, Republican turnout was up over 2008. In counties where Romney dominated, turnout was lower.” Wow.

IBD to Al Gore and the ‘Climate Change’ Movement: You’re Full of Globaloney

Okay, the folks at Investor’s Business Daily didn’t use those words in their Monday evening editorial.

But they could have (bolds are mine):

When Global Warming Freezes Over
(browser window title: “The Data Show There’s Been No Warming For Over a Decade”)

Global warming alarmists won’t give up their campaign to spread fear and backward thinking until an ice bridge stretches from New York to Paris. Science, though, says they should.

According to the data (from the Met Office in the UK), there’s been no warming for more than a decade. The global temperature that (Al) Gore and the rest of the alarmist tribe are so concerned about was about one full degree cooler (as measured in Celsius) last year than it was when temperatures peaked in 1997.

… The Daily Mail, which, unlike America’s mainstream media, isn’t afraid to report news that goes against the global warming narrative, says the British government agrees with that assessment.

… The warmer temperatures the alarmists were predicting decades ago have never arrived. Nearly five years back, Kevin Trenberth, a climate scientist who believes in global warming, had to admit that “none of the climate states in the models correspond even remotely to the current observed climate.”

We have no models, but even without one we think we can safely predict that the alarmist community and its sphere of influence will continue to shrink.

Not if the Obama administration, the carbon-crazed Luddites at the EPA, and the pseudo-academics who have staked the credibility of their entire professional lives on what GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum has accurately called a “hoax” have any say about it.

Laffer: ‘Gingrich’s Tax Plan Beats Romney’s’

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 7:10 am

In the Wall Street Journal today (bolds are mine):

Gingrich’s Tax Plan Beats Romney’s

… the key is a good tax plan and the ability to implement it.

Mr. Gingrich has a significantly better plan than does Mr. Romney, and he has twice before been instrumental in implementing a successful tax plan on a national level—once when he served in Congress as a Reagan supporter in the 1980s and again when he was President Clinton’s partner as speaker of the House of Representatives in the 1990s. During both of these periods the economy prospered incredibly—in good part because of Mr. Gingrich.

Jobs and wealth are created by those who are taxed, not by those who do the taxing. Government, by its very nature, doesn’t create resources but redistributes resources. To minimize the damages taxes cause the economy, the best way for government to raise revenue is a broad-based, low-rate flat tax that provides people and businesses with the fewest incentives to avoid or otherwise not report taxable income, and the least number of places where they can escape taxation. On these counts it doesn’t get any better than Mr. Gingrich’s optional 15% flat tax for individuals and his 12.5% flat tax for business. Each of these taxes has been tried and tested and found to be enormously successful.

Mr. Romney’s tax proposals—including eliminating the death tax, reducing the corporate tax rate to 25%, and extending the current tax rates on personal income, interest, dividends and capital gains—would be an improvement over those of President Obama, but they don’t have the boldness or internal integrity of Mr. Gingrich’s personal and business flat taxes.

Not surprising. A shortage of boldness (with the exception of brazenly lying about his opponents, and having others do it on his behalf) and a lack integrity signature features of Mitt Romney’s political life going all the way back to his time as Massachusetts governor.

Continuing with Mr. Laffer:

… A person who makes 10 times as much as another person should pay 10 times more in taxes. It is also patently obvious that it is unfair to tax some people’s income twice, three times or more after it has been earned, as is the case with the death tax.

The current administration’s notion of fairness—taxing high-income earners at high rates and not taxing other income earners at all—is totally unfair. It is also anathema to prosperity and ultimately leads to the situation we have in our nation today.

In 2012, those least capable of navigating complex government-created economic environments find themselves in their worst economic circumstances in generations.

Mr. Gingrich’s flat tax proposals—along with his proposed balanced budget amendment—would put a quick stop to overspending and return America to fiscal soundness. No other candidate comes close to doing this.

Florida voters would be wise to decide in favor of the guy who has an economic plan Art Laffer can support, or at a minimum to stay away from the guy with a boring 59-point plan.

Tuesday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (013112)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 7:00 am

Rules are here. Possible comment fodder may follow later. Other topics are also fair game.


Positivity: Lighthouse Pregnancy Center offers ‘true choice’ to women in need

Filed under: Life-Based News,Positivity — Tom @ 5:57 am

From Denver:

Jan 31, 2012 / 02:53 am

Lighthouse Pregnancy Center hosted a dinner and auction on Jan. 26 to help raise the funds needed to open its doors as the first Catholic crisis pregnancy center in Denver, Colo.

“Lighthouse brings together the community to provide education, outreach and services that will encourage and uphold the dignity of women,” said board chairman, Laura Salvato.

Recently, Lighthouse secured property across the street from Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains’ new $6.3 million headquarters. The construction, which is still being completed, heavily relies on volunteer efforts and donations.

“By building and operating a crisis pregnancy center on this site, Lighthouse can offer a true choice to women who seek its services,” Salvato added.

Pro-life actor and film producer Eduardo Verastegui was the keynote speaker at the inaugural fundraiser.

Verastegui recently opened a pro-life medical center for women, Guadalupe Medical Center, in Los Angeles. He referred to it as “an oasis of life” in a “desert of death” because of its location in the midst of 10 abortion clinics.

“I am just so excited to hear that you are doing the same thing,” he told donors, “I think (this is) the best way to really win this culture and turn this into a culture of life.”

Executive director, Rosalindo Loano, spoke and shared her vision for the center to provide “hope and help for these women who need to know that they are strong and intelligent.” …

Go here for the rest of the story.

January 30, 2012

Rush: The GOP Establishment Believes That Romney Cannot Beat Obama

I learned quite a bit about a lot of people during the past week. Not much of it was encouraging.

I learned that Mitt Romney and his acolytes are at least as treacherous as Team Obama, if not moreso. Their ability to tell lies without even a hint of remorse is really something.

I also learned that Romney and the GOP establishment will go after their intraparty opposition harder than they will ever go after their Democratic opponents.

Rush agrees, and asserts something which directly contradicts Ann Coulter’s claim in her column last week that Mitt Romney is the only Republican who is electable — i.e., nobody in the establishment does (including Coulter about a year ago, many will recall), and it will be a self-fulfilling prophecy:

Don’t Hold Your Breath for Romney to Attack Obama the Way He Attacked Newt

… They’ll be scared to death. I’ll tell you something else. The bottom line… I’ve got audio sound bites here that will back me up on this, as I’ve said this from the get-go. Way too much of the Republican establishment doesn’t think Obama can lose anyway. They don’t think Obama can be beat. Their Romney choice is all oriented toward holding the House and winning the Senate, putting themselves in charge of the money and the regulations, and then stopping Obama that way. Now, you and I all think Obama can be beat. But the vast majority of the people who serve as consultants, advise candidates, will do their best to make sure that whatever the vitriol you’re seeing here in this primary will not happen in the general.

The reluctance to attack will also be true of the GOP establishment.

And uh, excuse me, the idea that a GOP House and Senate will stop Barack Obama, the Democratic Party, and the DC bureaucracy (with the help of the establishment press) from expanding its nascent de facto tyranny is drop-dead stupid. Anyone who believes otherwise has no appreciation for what we’re up against.

Objectively Unfit Mitt Romney, those who are backing him, and those who are flacking for him are being played like a fiddle. Here’s hoping Florida voters throw a monkey wrench into this madness.

Juan Williams Finds Racism in Candidates’ (and Others’?) Use of ‘Constitution’ and ‘Founding Fathers’

JuanWilliamsAmazonImageSo a guy whose contract was terminated by NPR on a phony pretext for not toeing the liberal line enough, including writing a book (“Enough: The Phony Leaders, Dead-End Movements, and Culture of Failure That Are Undermining Black America–and What We Can Do About It”) which indicted the modern civil-rights movement for, well, undermining Black America, now appears to want eliminate “Constitution” and “Founding Fathers” from the lexicon of Republican candidates — and possibly, it would appear, from political discussion in general — because, well, they’re racial code words.

That is what Juan Williams outrageously claims in his latest column at the Hill today (bold is mine):

Two weeks ago at the Fox News/Wall Street Journal debate in Myrtle Beach, S.C., I asked each GOP presidential candidate some pointed questions about the racial politics that will play a big role in the presidential campaign.

Race is always a trigger in politics, but now a third of the nation are people of color — and their numbers are growing. With those minorities solidly in the Democratic camp and behind the first black president, the scene is set for a bonanza of racial politics.

The language of GOP racial politics is heavy on euphemisms that allow the speaker to deny any responsibility for the racial content of his message. The code words in this game are “entitlement society” — as used by Mitt Romney — and “poor work ethic” and “food stamp president” — as used by Newt Gingrich. References to a lack of respect for the “Founding Fathers” and the “Constitution” also make certain ears perk up by demonizing anyone supposedly threatening core “old-fashioned American values.”

The code also extends to attacks on legal immigrants, always carefully lumped in with illegal immigrants, as people seeking “amnesty” and taking jobs from Americans.

Well, I guess this explains why so many on the left like Williams breezily assume that anyone associated with the Tea Party or having Tea Party-sympathetic beliefs must be a racist. If you guys would just stop talking about the Constitution and our Founding Fathers, this would all go away — not. Williams et al would find other “code words” which in their fevered imaginations still connote racism. It’s all about the limiting the range of acceptable speech to protect liberal and leftist interests. With all due respect, Juan — pound sand.

This afternoon, Jim Taranto at the Wall Street Journal’s Best of the Web noted another potential target of Williams’s ire:

Accusing someone of not respecting “the ‘Constitution’ ” is a racial code word? If that were true, the American Civil Liberties Union would be the biggest racist organization around.

Indeed. When are we going to hear from you, Juan, about the ACLU’s pervasive racism?

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

Latest PJ Media Column (‘GOP-Governed and Right-To-Work States Saved the Economy’s Bacon in 2011′) Is Up (Update: More Comparisons and Specific State Commentary)

Filed under: Taxes & Government — Tom @ 9:35 am

It’s here.

It will go up here at BizzyBlog on Wednesday (link won’t work until then) after the blackout expires.


UPDATE: The column necessarily had to summarize matters a bit more than I would have liked. It’s worth digging a bit deeper to show the differences between right-to-work and other states, and GOP-governed and Democrat-governed states.

Having done so, and without throwing up more numbers than readers can stand, I have found that last year’s seasonally adjusted employment growth of 1.20% (per the state-by-state detail) had four elements (includes 50 states plus DC; Rhode Island’s independent governor is treated as a philosophical Democrat):

  • GOP-governed right-to-work states (20) — 1.42%.
  • GOP-governed states which aren’t right-to-work (9) — 1.12%.
  • Dem-governed right-to-work states (2) — 0.39%, thanks almost entirely to North Carolina’s pathetic Beverly Perdue, who is mercifully not running for reelection.
  • Dem-governed states which aren’t right-to-work (20) — 1.17% (the stat was only this “good” because California, which had employment growth of 1.72%, but should have done much better considering the pit it was already in).

There are certain things I wanted to bring up about other states which had to be left on the cutting-room floor:

  • Ohio — Overall, 2011 was a good year for job growth in the Buckeye State, but the year’s second half wasn’t as good as the first. Thanks to the EPA essentially dictating the shutdown of many power plants and the government-imposed de facto moratorium on fracking, the state enters 2012 with heavy headwinds.
  • Georgia — What in the world is going on in the Peach State? It lost almost 14,000 jobs and the unemployment rate at year-end was an underperforming 9.7%. Reader input on this one would be welcome.
  • Massachusetts — The Democrat-dominated Bay State actually underperformed basket case Illinois during the second half of the year. After adding about 50,000 jobs in the year’s first seven months, it lost 10,000 in the final five. RomneyCare anyone?
  • Missouri — Also lost jobs (4,000). Maybe the Show-Me State needs to concentrate more on its overall business climate and less on hitting mythical economic home runs.
  • Connecticut — Added a pathetic 9,000 jobs. Tax increases accompanied by little in the way of public-sector union concessions would explain this.
  • New Jersey — The unemployment rate is still 9.0%. It would be worse if Chris Christie hadn’t gotten his way with the Garden State’s budget, but he’s absolutely right that the state’s income tax rates need to come down.
  • Wisconsin — The unemployment rate is relatively low (7.1%, down from 7.5% at the beginning of the year), but job growth ended up weak. Sadly, I think that uncertainty over the results of the gubernatorial recall of Scott Walker and the union-driven atmosphere of intimidation in much of the state is having a negative impact. Businesses seem to be holding off on hiring decisions pending that outcome. It is no understatement to assert, as Stephen Moore did in the Wall Street Journal on Saturday, that the recall is “The Most Important Non-Presidential Election of the Decade.”

Monday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (013012)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 7:15 am

Rules are here. Possible comment fodder may follow later. Other topics are also fair game.


Positivity: Barstow woman walks for first time in 10 years

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 7:00 am

From Barstow, California:

Terri Medina lost both legs due to diabetes, but fought to walk with the help of prosthetics

January 29, 2012 9:04 AM

Before coming to Rimrock Villa Convalescent Hospital last summer, Terri Medina spent her days sitting idly in a wheelchair.

But today the 50-year-old former mortgage loan professional is doing something she hasn’t done in a decade: She’s taking life one step at a time, literally.

And for Medina, a double amputee who was overweight and with stage four kidney failure, the transformation the last five months has been more than a surprise.

“Oh man, try a miracle,” Medina said. “Not only has Rimrock saved my life, but I’m walking again.”

January 29, 2012

WaPo’s Ron Paul Newsletter Informer Stays Anonymous to ‘Avoid Criticizing Former Employer,’ Then Criticizes Away

Jim Taranto at the Wall Street Journal’s Best of the Web caught the Washington Post either misrepresenting the motives of an anonymous informer in connection with Ron Paul’s long-ago newsletters, getting duped by said informer, or trying to dupe its readers. Perhaps it was a bit of all of the above, all of which worked out to conveniently smear Paul without giving him — or readers — a chance to know who was going after him.

The 1700-word story by Jerry Markon and Alice Crites (“Paul pursued strategy of publishing controversial newsletters, associates say”) concerned the degree of knowledge the presidential candidate had of allegedly racially charged material in his newsletters published during the 1990s. The contradiction follows the jump:

A person involved in Paul’s businesses, who spoke on condition of anonymity to avoid criticizing a former employer, said Paul and his associates decided in the late 1980s to try to increase sales by making the newsletters more provocative. They discussed adding controversial material, including racial statements, to help the business, the person said.

“It was playing on a growing racial tension, economic tension, fear of government,’’ said the person, who supports Paul’s economic policies but is not backing him for president. “I’m not saying Ron believed this stuff. It was good copy. Ron Paul is a shrewd businessman.’’

The articles included racial, anti-Semitic and anti-gay content. They claimed, for example, that the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. “seduced underage girls and boys’’; they ridiculed black activists by suggesting that New York be named “Zooville” or “Lazyopolis”; and they said the 1992 Los Angeles riots ended “when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks.’’ The June 1990 edition of the Ron Paul Political Report included the statement: “Homosexuals, not to speak of the rest of society, were far better off when social pressure forced them to hide their activities.”

As Taranto wrote:

Wait a minute: He “spoke on condition of anonymity to avoid criticizing a former employer”? That is exactly the opposite of the reason he spoke under condition of anonymity.

Really. Imagine how harsh the critique would have been if the anonymous person had decided to really hurt Paul’s reputation.

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

AP’s Yost Ignores Fri. Fast and Furious Doc Dump Email Saying Holder Was ‘Alerted’ The Day Brian Terry Died

Well, let’s see. During the early days of the Clinton administration, we had the sad spectacle of Treasury aide Josh Steiner telling Senators investigating the Whitewater real estate deals and the Resolution Trust Corporation that that he written untrue things in his diary, i.e., that “essentially …. he had lied to his diary.” During the Paula Jones trial, the jury was entertained (members are said to have laughed) when Bill Clinton tried to answer a question by saying that “It depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is.”

Soon, another insufferable howler may eventually enter the lexicon, courtesy of Monty Wilkinson, former deputy chief of staff to Attorney General Eric Holder, namely, “I lied in an email when I wrote that ‘I’ve alerted the AG.’”

The subject deserving of an “alert” was the death of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry on December 14, 2010 at the hands of Mexican criminals using guns which had previously disappeared during the course of Operation Fast and Furious. As reported by Matthew Boyle at the Daily Caller, Wilkinson’s supposed lie, which was emailed that day to now-former Arizona U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke, appears to be the only thing standing between Holder and definitive proof that the Attorney General did not tell the truth when he told the House Judiciary Committee in early May 2011 that he had only learned of Fast and Furious a “few weeks” earlier (later amended to “a couple of months”).

Don’t expect even a little recognition of how serious this matter is from Pete Yost at the Associated Press, otherwise known as the Administration’s Press.


Univ. of Ill. Research Org, As Unemployment Hits Almost 10%: State ‘In Better Financial Situation’

IllinoisMapA report carried at CBS News in St. Louis from Jim Anderson of the Illinois Radio Network (IRN), which appears to be a private entity, tells readers that a research study (summary; PDF of relevant chapter) published by the Institute of Government and Public Affairs (IGPA) at the University of Illinois has identified “a combination of tough policies (which) could bring the state into fiscal balance by the end of the decade.” To be clear, the end of the decade is seven years and eleven months from now.

Predictably, the “tough policies” include “maintaining increased income tax rates after they are scheduled to expire.” On the spending side, what IGPA describes as “extreme austerity” means “keeping the growth rate of all spending down to 2.1 percent per year.” Those who would rather not look at IGPA’s detail can be forgiven, because the opening paragraph of the linked chapter above, which IRN did not cite, gives away the researchers’ detachment from reality:

Illinois ended 2011 with a better financial situation than it faced a year earlier. However, the state began the year with a hole so deep that not even a massive tax increase and drastic spending cuts could come close to filling it.

In your dreams, guys. The 67% and 45% “temporary” increases in personal and corporate income-tax rates passed earlier this year — increases which, according to Governor Pat Quinn, would prevent the state from “careening towards bankruptcy” — have not created a “better financial situation.” The credit markets agree. The state’s credit rating, recently downgraded, is the worst in the nation.

There’s also this odd sentence at the end of the IRN report: “The state’s operating budget is close to balanced, (Univ. of Illinois Economist Richard) Dye said, but the state has $8.1 billion in unpaid bills, according to the state comptroller, and more than $80 billion in unfunded pension obligations.” That gives me the impression that the state has “balanced” its cash-based operating budget by falling further behind in paying its bills. This is a “better financial situation”?

It’s worth recalling predictions establishment press types swallowed whole when the tax increases became law about their supposedly inconsequential impact on employment and company relocation (bolds are nine):

J. Fred Giertz, a University of Illinois economics professor, says an immediate exodus isn’t likely.

Companies, he says, weigh workforce availability, transportation and other factors when deciding where to build or expand. “Our state is close to insolvency, and they don’t like that either,” he says.

“An immediate job killer? Not likely,” says Ed Morrison, economic policy adviser at Indiana’s Purdue Center for Regional Development. “Much more important is regaining financial stability.”

Well, I guess it depends on what you mean by “immediate.” Unemployment didn’t increase the next day. But at the time the tax increase was passed, the unemployment rate in Illinois was 9.2%, which was lower than that of Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, and Missouri. By the end of 2011, the unemployment rate in the financially stinkin’ Land of Lincoln was 9.8%, higher than every state just mentioned — yes, even including Michigan (9.3%).

Job growth didn’t stop “immediately,” either, but in the final ten months of 2011, the Illinois economy added only 8,000 seasonally adjusted jobs. Companies on the whole aren’t hiring, it’s likely that many are leaving, and the state is having to bribe some larger companies to stay with incentives and tax abatements.

I can’t wait for the IGPA’s superlatives if the state’s unemployment rate gets above 10% and the backlog of unpaid bills hits $10 billion.

There is someone who got it right:

John Tillman, CEO of the Illinois Policy Institute, a non-partisan research group dedicated to free-market principles, says the tax increases could cost 268,000 jobs over the next three to five years.

“When you raise the cost of doing business,” he says, “people vote with their feet.”

Given the employment growth in other states during 2011, particularly Ohio and Michigan, it’s perfectly reasonable to believe that Illinois employment should have increased by at least 50,000 during the final ten months of 2011.

The other “experts” above who made dumber-than-a-box-of-rocks predictions any child should have been able to see through should lose their credibility as news story sources. But they won’t.

At Dollar Collapse (HT Instapundit), John Rubino asks: “Why Isn’t Illinois A Bigger Story Than Greece?” Good question, especially given that Illinois has more residents.

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.