Category Archives: Unemployment

Lying with statistics

I just read an article that claimed to show how Obama’s economy had out-performed Reagan’s … except it used apple/orange comparisons like dollar values, numbers of jobs created, and the unemployment rate.

I decided to see for myself how the Reagan and Obama economies compared by using an apple/apple statistic.

Reagan Recovery vs Obama Recovery

I think this clearly illustrates the value of Conservative over Liberal economic policies. Both presidents inherited failing economies, but President Reagan (R) implemented hard-line Conservative policies, while President Obama (D) implemented hard-line Liberal policies.  It’s very easy to see which one put more people back to work.

Source:
http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS12300000

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Filed under Barack Obama, Economy, Ronald Reagan, Unemployment

Babs should stick to singing

2015_04 Streisand lurves Obama

In Sept 2014, Streisand likened Obama to “gods” and “kings.”  A couple of weeks ago, she gave him credit for creating lots and lots of jobs, while blasting Republicans’ allegedly relentless opposition to his wonderful efforts to save American workers.

Uh, Babs, honey … REALITY CHECK!

2007 - 2015 Employment-population ratio

Sources:

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Democrats govern like self-centered adolescents

Businesses mean jobs, but Democrats treat businesses the way surly teens treat their parents (badly) and their parents’ credit cards (take take take).

2014 Illinois population drain

The worst states for business are all blue (majority Democrat); the best are all red (majority Republican).

2014_07 Walmart hiring sign Williston ND

Source:
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/editorials/ct-illinois-census-brookings-edit-0107-20150106-story.html

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Filed under Democrats, Republicans, Unemployment

Eight minutes about a pencil

Mike Rowe with pencil

From Mike Rowe’s Facebook page:

Kyle Smith writes…

Howard Dean recently criticized Gov Scott Walker for never finishing college, stating that he was “unknowledgeable.” What would your response be on college as a requirement for elected office?

Hi Kyle

Back in 1990, The QVC Cable Shopping Channel was conducting a national talent search. I had no qualifications to speak of, but I needed a job, and thought TV might be a fun way to pay the bills. So I showed up at The Marriott in downtown Baltimore with a few hundred other hopefuls, and waited for a chance to audition. When it was my turn, the elevator took me to the top floor, where a man no expression led me into a suite and asked me to take a seat behind a large desk. Across from the desk, there was a camera on a tripod. On the desk was a digital timer with an LED display. I took a seat as the man clipped a microphone on my shirt and explained the situation.

“The purpose of this audition is to see if you can talk for eight minutes without stuttering, blathering, passing out, or throwing up. Any questions?”

“What would you like me to talk about?” I asked.

The man pulled a pencil from behind his ear and rolled it across the desk. “Talk to me about that pencil. Sell it. Make me want it. But be yourself. If you can do that for eight minutes, the job is yours. OK?”

I looked at the pencil. It was yellow. It had a point on one end, and an eraser on the other. On the side were the words, Dixon Ticonderoga Number 2 SOFT.

“OK,” I said.

The man set the timer to 8:00, and walked behind the tripod. He pressed a button and a red light appeared on the camera. He pressed another button and the timer began to count backwards. “Action,” he said. I picked up the pencil and started talking.

“Hi there. My name’s Mike Rowe, and I only have eight minutes to tell you why this is finest pencil on Planet Earth. So let’s get right to it.”

I opened the desk drawer and found a piece of hotel stationery, right where I hoped it would be. I picked up the pencil and wrote the word QUALITY in capital letters. I held the paper toward the camera.

“As you can plainly see, The #2 Dixon Ticonderoga leaves a bold, unmistakable line, far superior to the thin and wispy wake left by the #3, or the fat, sloppy skid mark of the unwieldy #1. Best of all, the Ticonderoga is not filled with actual lead, but ‘madagascar graphite,’ a far safer alternative for anyone who likes to chew on their writing implements.”

To underscore the claim, I licked the point. I then discussed the many advantages of the Ticonderoga’s color.

“A vibrant yellow, perfectly suited for an object that needs to stand out from the clutter of a desk drawer.”

I commented on the comfort of its design.

“Unlike those completely round pencils that press hard into the web of your hand, the Ticonderoga’s circumference is comprised of eight gently plained surfaces, which dramatically reduce fatigue, and make writing for extended periods an absolute delight.”

I pointed out the “enhanced eraser,” which was “guaranteed to still be there – even when the pencil was sharpened down to an unusable nub.”

I opined about handmade craftsmanship and American made quality. I talked about the feel of real wood.

“In a world overrun with plastic and high tech gadgets, isn’t it comforting to know that some things haven’t evolved into something shiny and gleaming and completely unrecognizable?’”

After all that, there was still five minutes on the timer. So I shifted gears and considered the pencil’s impact on Western Civilization. I spoke of Picasso and Van Gogh, and their hundreds of priceless drawings – all done in pencil. I talked about Einstein and Hawking, and their many complicated theories and theorems – all done in pencil.

“Pen and ink are fine for memorializing contracts,” I said, “but real progress relies on the ability to erase and start anew. Archimedes said he could move the world with a lever long enough, but when it came to proving it, he needed a pencil to make the point.”

With three minutes remaining, I moved on to some personal recollections about the role of pencils in my own life. My first legible signature, my first book report, my first crossword puzzle, and of course, my first love letter. I may have even worked up a tear as I recalled the innocence of my youth, scribbled out on a piece of looseleaf with all the hope and passion a desperate 6th grader could muster… courtesy of a #2 pencil.

With :30 seconds left on the timer, I looked fondly at the Dixon Ticonderoga, and sat silently for five seconds. Then I wrapped it up.

“We call it a pencil, because all things need a name. But today, let’s call it what it really is. A time machine. A match maker. A magic wand. And let’s say it can all be yours…for just 99 cents.”

The timer read 0:00. The man walked back to the desk. He took the pencil and wrote “YOU’RE HIRED” on the stationery, and few days later, I moved to West Chester, PA. And a few days after that, I was on live television, face to face with the never-ending parade of trinkets and chotchkies that comprise QVC’s overnight inventory.

I spent three months on the graveyard shift, five nights a week. Technically, this was my training period, which was curious, given the conspicuous absence of supervision, or anything that could be confused with actual instruction. Every few minutes a stagehand would bring me another mysterious “must have item,” which I’d blather about nonsensically until it was whisked away and replaced with something no less baffling. In this way, I slowly uncovered the mysteries of my job, and forged a tenuous relationship with an audience of chronic insomniacs and narcoleptic lonely hearts. It was a crucible of confusion and ambiguity, and in hindsight, the best training I ever had.

Which brings me to the point of your question, Kyle.

I don’t agree with Howard Dean – not at all.

Here’s what I didn’t understand 25 years ago. QVC had a serious recruiting problem. Qualified candidates were applying in droves, but failing miserably on the air. Polished salespeople with proven track records were awkward on TV. Professional actors with extensive credits couldn’t be themselves on camera. And seasoned hosts who understood live television had no experience hawking products. So eventually, QVC hit the reset button. They stopped looking for “qualified” people, and started looking for anyone who could talk about a pencil for eight minutes.

QVC had confused qualifications with competency.

Perhaps America has done something similar?

Look at how we hire help – it’s not so different than how we elect leaders. We search for work ethic on resumes. We look for intelligence in test scores. We search for character in references. And of course, we look at a four-year diploma as though it might actually tell us something about common sense and leadership.

Obviously, we need a bit more from our elected officials than the instincts of a home shopping host, but the business of determining what those “qualifications” are is completely up to us. We get to decide what matters most. We get to decide if a college degree or military service is somehow determinative. We get to decide if Howard Dean is correct.

Anyone familiar with my foundation knows my position. I think a trillion dollars of student loans and a massive skills gap are precisely what happens to a society that actively promotes one form of education as the best course for the most people. I think the stigmas and stereotypes that keep so many people from pursuing a truly useful skill begin with the mistaken belief that a four-year degree is somehow superior to all other forms of learning. And I think that making elected office contingent on a college degree is maybe the worst idea I’ve ever heard.

But of course, Howard Dean is not the real problem. He’s just one guy. And he’s absolutely right when he says that many others will judge Scott Walker for not finishing college. That’s the real problem.

However – when Howard Dean called the Governor “unknowledgeable,” he rolled out more than a stereotype. He rolled a pencil across the desk, and gave Scott Walker eight minutes to knock it out of the park.

It’ll be fun to see if he does.

Mike

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Filed under Economy, Education, Scott Walker, Unemployment

How much more PROOF do you need?

Republican policies CREATE JOBS. 

Democrat policies DESTROY JOBS.

1995-2015 Employment correlated by Political Party control

H/t itooktheredpill

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Filed under Democrats, Republicans, Unemployment

20 Years of Employment-Population Ratio data, Correlated with Majority Party, Jan 1995 – Jan 2015

Employment-Population Ratio and Averages by Majority Party, Jan 1995 - Jan 2015

{Click on graph or here to enlarge}

More data analysis here

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Filed under Unemployment

Ten Ugly Facts About the State of our Country that Democrats Want to Hide on Election Day

DONKEY3The first nine (and the graphic) are from the geniuses at Cain TV and Diogenes Middle Finger.  The tenth is from U.S. Government sources and will be of special interest to those of you in military families:

As we all get ready to head to the polls tomorrow, Democrats want you focused on the Koch brothers (that evil fang-toothed fictionalized version, not the real ones who are excellent and highly successful businessmen) and their “war on women” crapola.

What they do not want you focused on is the data that shows what failures they have been leading this nation. Many people do not even know the facts I’m about to share, because the mainstream media do not report them. So read them and share them with nine friends who are going to vote tomorrow. It just might help decide whether Harry Reid remains in control of the Senate or is sent to the back bench where he belongs. (Actually that’s not where he belongs, but I’ll not get into that now.)

Ten facts Democrats do not want to talk about:

1. Sluggish economic growth. Yes, we’ve had a couple of strong quarters, but annualized growth throughout the Obama presidency has been less than 2 percent. That is horrendous.

2. Median income is down $3,000 per household since Obama took office. Astonishing.

3. The labor participation rate is down from 67 percent to 62 percent, which makes the published unemployment rate look much better than it really is. The U6 rate, which includes those who have given up looking for work, remains over 10 percent.

4. More part-time jobs have been created than full-time jobs in last six years.

5. The home ownership rate is down from 67 percent to 64 percent.

6. Taxes went up when the Bush tax cuts were allowed to expire. Liberals will say that’s fine because they only went up on the rich. I say the government did what it too often does and chose to target producers and opportunity creators.

7. ObamaCare is a failure! More people are losing their insurance than are becoming newly insured, and 51 percent of those enrolled in the exchanges say they will not re-up given the opportunity the next time around. Then there are the 29ers (people being limited to 29 hours a week because of ObamaCare mandates) and the 49ers (not the San Francisco ones . . . the businesses intentionally staying under 50 employees to avoid the coverage mandate). There are also thousands of doctors refusing patients with ObamaCare coverage because they can’t cover their costs on the reimbursements, while thousands more doctors are retiring early.

8. The national debt has exceeded $17 trillion for the first time in U.S. history. Remember when Obama declared as a senator that running up debt was unpatriotic? Um. Yeah.

9. From the Middle East to Eastern Europe to Russia to Britain to the Falkland Islands to Latin America to Mexico to the Far East, our foreign policy is a muddled mess. Shockingly to Obama the rest of the world did not conform to his global ideals just because he gave speeches saying they should.

10. Twice as many U.S. military deaths have happened in the Middle East under Obama’s watch in half the time as under President Bush’s.  This happened despite aggressive campaigning by Obama against the war in Iraq, promoting him as the bringer of peace to the region, a foreign policy prodigy and the savior of U.S. service men and women.

Please keep these facts in mind as you vote tomorrow.

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Filed under Democrats, Economy, Elections, Military, National Debt, Obamacare, Taxes, U.S. Senate, Unemployment

Job Creation: Reagan vs. Obama

Reagan vs Obama percent employed

I just read an article at Forbes purporting to demonstrate that Obama-nomics has been way more successful than Reagan-omics was. I should say, “I tried to read an article” cuz the author lost me with his very first graph, which claims to compare Reagan’s Unemployment Rate with Obama’s.

But President Clinton altered the parameters for calculating the Unemployment Rate to make his numbers look better when nothing had really changed. (E.g., he had certain classes of unemployed persons removed from the “Unemployment Rate” data set and shoveled into some other, obscure data set, like “Discouraged Workers.”)

You can’t legitimately compare pre-Clinton and post-Clinton Unemployment Rate data sets; they’re apples and oranges. But the Forbes author does it anyway, without a word of apology. In other words, he is deliberately lying with statistics to make Obama look better than he is. Where oh where is my surprised face?

So far as I know, the Percentage Employed criteria have not been changed, so comparing those for Reagan and Obama should give us some real data.  Right off the bat it’s obvious that Reagan’s policies were better.  Obama’s percent employed went down while Reagan’s went up.  It’s kinda creepy how symmetrical the numbers are, isn’t it?

That Forbes article is named: “Obama outperforms Reagan on jobs growth.”  That works only if by “jobs growth” the author means the exact opposite.

Sources:

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Filed under Barack Obama, Economy, Ronald Reagan, Unemployment