The true value of fairy dust

Obama: ‘They Have Tried To Sell Us This Trickle-Down, Tax-Cut Fairy Dust Before’ [1:03]


H/t Terrell, Itooktheredpill, Angelaisms and Pistol Pete



Filed under Barack Obama

5 responses to “The true value of fairy dust

  1. I like the graphic, but one detail…
    …it’s not “nearly” 12 Million jobs, it’s Over 12 Million Missing Jobs


    • chrissythehyphenated

      I got stuff from you and Angelaisms that didn’t quite agree, so went to bls and ran the numbers myself several different ways. I ended up throwing my hands in the air and using the only answer that came up more than once, which was a little under 12 mill.

      The way the data is presented at bls is confusing (to me) and I wasn’t helped by my lame calculator that won’t go that high! Sheesh … I’m already math challenged.

      Add in leaving out the last 3 zeroes and figuring out where to put the blasted decimal points on the percents and puzzling out if it is a multiply or a divide … my head was spinning.

      On a positive note, I am delighted with the fairy dust and stork references. I am uncomfortable with ridicule (too many times the victim growing up) but Alinsky is right that it works. This one was whimsical enough to take the edge off for me. And Obama started the fairy dust thing. He deserves to be picked on for it.


      • I understand what you mean about the BLS numbers being confusing, because I have been confused myself at times. I think part of what makes it confusing is the population growth and rounding. I’ll try to explain it as best I can…

        Table A-1. Employment status of the civilian noninstitutional population 16 years and over, 1977 to date [Numbers in thousands] shows that the 2006 averages are:

        2006 Civilian noninstitutional population: 228,815
        2006 Civilian labor force Employed Number: 144,427
        2006 Civilian labor force Employed Percent of population: 63.1

        If you use your computer’s caluculator, (on Windows, found by clicking the Start menu –> All programs –> Accessories –> Calculator), it can handle the numbers, even if you add the [,000] to show the numbers as their actual vaules, rather than the “Numbers in thousands” numbers shown on the web page.

        So, the “Employment-population ratio” is the “Civilian labor force Employed Percent of population” which is =
        “Civilian labor force Employed Number” / “Civilian noninstitutional population”
        144,427 / 228,815 = 0.631195507 = 63.1% (rounded)
        144,427,000 / 228,815,000 = 0.631195507 = 63.1% (rounded)

        So, the average “Employment-population ratio” for 2006 was 63.1%.

        Thankfully, that agrees with what we get when we look at the Employment-population ratio and average the twelve monthly values shown for 2006 and find that the average = 63.1%.

        We also see that for the last month that Republicans controlled the House, Senate, and Presidency, December 2006, the Employment-population ratio was 63.4%, while in July 2012 it was 58.4%.

        Going back to the Table A-1. Employment status of the civilian noninstitutional population 16 years and over, 1977 to date [Numbers in thousands], we see that
        July 2012 Civilian noninstitutional population: 243,354
        July 2012 Civilian labor force Employed Number: 142,220
        July 2012 Civilian labor force Employed Percent of population: 58.4
        142,220 / 243,354 = 0.584416118 = 58.4% (rounded)
        142,220,000 / 243,354,000 = 0.584416118 = 58.4% (rounded)

        So, the question is, if we had the same level of employment now that we had in December 2006 (63.4%, instead of the current 58.4%), how many more people would be employed right now?

        A simple way to answer that is to say that the current population is over 240 Million, so 5% of that is over 12 million.

        If our Employment-population ratio was currently 63.4%, instead of 58.4%, that 5 point increase would mean that there would be over 12 million more people employed.

        An more complicated alternate way of looking at this would be to look at the current ratio:
        142,220 / 243,354 = 58.4% (rounded)
        and ask what would the # employed be if the Employment-population ratio was currently 63.4%?
        #Employed / 243,354 = 63.4%
        #Employed = 243,354 * 63.4% = 154,286 (rounded)

        So what is the difference between the number that would be employed if our ratio was currently that same as it was in December 2006 (63.4%), rather than the current (58.4%)?
        154,286 – 142,220 = 12,066
        Remember, those [Numbers in thousands], so the actual numbers are:
        154,286,000 – 142,220,000 = 12,066,000

        So again, we see that if we currently had the same level of employment that we had under Bush and the Republican Congress in December 2006, there would be over 12 Million more people employed.


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  3. chrissythehyphenated

    Pill, you’re so sweet to take the time to do this for me. I need to give this more attention when I have not slept so badly.

    I did manage to pin the calculator to my taskbar THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!! I had no idea it was there!! … Ooh, I see sticky notes in Accessories. I think I’ll pin that. These will both be so useful.

    I’ve also got a stopwatch (online) on my bookmark bar, use it all the time since I get so absorbed in writing, I forget to take my meds on time.