October 8 2010
Beyond the Spin
The jobs report is out and it's awful:
The economy shed 95,000 nonfarm jobs in September, the Labor Department reported Friday, with most of the decline the result of the layoffs by local governments and of temporary decennial Census workers.
The steep drop was far worse than economists had been predicting. Most estimates were for a loss of only a few thousand jobs.
"September's U.S. payroll report adds to the evidence that the recovery is losing what little forward momentum it had," said Paul Ashworth, senior United States economist at Capital Economics.
The White House has had a pathetic response bad economic news: "It could have been worse."
It could also have been better. Bad policies produced these numbers, which have remained stable for more than a year.
Unlike Post blogger Ezra Klein I am delighted about one facet of job loss: the loss of some public sector jobs contributed to the bad number (but not enough). A public sector job doesn't generate anything but paper and it is paid for by productive workers. Let's lose more of those jobs!
We need job increases in the private sector because these are the only productive jobs. But to get them government must cease to gobble up money in the form of taxes that could otherwise have gone to hiring.