by Warner Todd Huston | November 5, 2012 5:52 pm
Just before Election Day, the Washington Post is super excited about all that “job growth” for October. Yet the paper goes on to note that the “unemployment rate is flat.” So, which is it, Washington Post? Are we to be jubilant that there was job growth in October, or is the unemployment rate flat?
Regardless, the Post tries to have it both ways as it gives Obama cover even as it ultimately notes that there really wasn’t much improvement in jobless figures for October. In fact, the Post almost admits that its report is intended to help Obama right in its first paragraph.
The U.S. jobs market in October sustained its slow trudge toward better times, the government reported on Friday, in the last major report card on the economy before the presidential election.
Ah, that “slow trudge toward better times.” But is it? Despite all the happy talk sprinkled through the article, the Post is forced to note that much of this “good news” is closer to treading water as opposed to any “slow trudge toward better times.”
For instance, the Post notes that the unemployment figures remained “essentially unchanged” and didn’t really get much better because more people are now putting themselves back in the job market. So, new jobs didn’t really keep pace with the number of job seekers.
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The Post also didn’t mention why more people might have entered the job force. Why, for instance, didn’t the paper report that seasonal employment is just getting in swing as retail outlets hire temporary workers for the Christmas season?
Absurdly, the Post tried hard to spin the actual small increase in unemployment as a good thing.
The unemployment rate in October did rise to 7.9 percent, up from 7.8 percent, but the reason behind the uptick suggested an improved job market: More Americans decided to look for work, though not all of them found jobs.
But this also ignores the fact that more people than ever have simply given up looking for work in this dour economy.
Obama’s recovery has grown at the slowest rate in 70 years and nearly 5 million fewer Americans are working or looking for work than when Obama took office. This drop out rate accounts for almost all of the supposed reduction of unemployment since 2009. After all, those who have given up looking for work do not figure into the unemployment rates.
Naturally, none of this is mentioned by the Washington Post as it celebrates Obama’s wonderful economic recovery.
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