If you were to read only the first paragraph of the Associated Press report on the government’s brand new jobs report, you’d be led to believe that President Obama’s economic policies are working beautifully. But then the AP quickly changes its happy tune about the June jobs numbers for the nation and — in a stunning about-face that contradicts its own initial assessment of the country’s job health — reveals the dark side of the just-issued Labor Department report.
Here’s the AP’s opening “hip-hip-hooray, Obama” paragraph as carried on the left-leaning (and Obama loving) Huffington Post:
U.S. employers added a solid 223,000 jobs in June, and the unemployment rate fell to 5.3 percent, a seven-year low. The numbers reflect a job market moving close to full health and raise expectations that the Federal Reserve will start raising interest rates as early as September.
Did you catch that part about the “job market moving close to full health?” If that’s the rosy scenario we’re now celebrating, how can the Associated Press — only a few words removed from that happy dance — say the following about the drop in the unemployment rate?
The rate fell mostly because many people out of work gave up on their job searches and were no longer counted as unemployed.
Other details in the report were less encouraging: The percentage of Americans working or looking for work fell to a 38-year low. Average hourly pay was flat. And employers added 60,000 fewer jobs in April and May than the government had previously estimated.
So, at the same time that the AP trumpets “a job market moving close to full health,” the news service acknowledges that more and more and more Americans have dropped out of the labor force. It’s as though the AP had that first celebratory paragraph ready to roll before the truly bad news found in the devilish details of the government’s report was released.
Does the old expression “whistling past the graveyard” come to mind?
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Coverage of the Thursday jobs report by The Hill goes into greater detail about the dark underbelly of the statistics that the president and his liberal supporters certainly won’t be pointing out any time soon:
The number of people in the labor force fell by 432,000, a reason for the lower jobless rate, while 56,000 fewer people were employed, sending the participation rate down to 62.6 percent, the lowest level since 1977.
And as long as we’re unpacking the Labor Department’s numbers to disclose the facts about America’s jobs picture rather than the feelings the left would embrace, here’s the truth about the kind of jobs the private sector created in June. As you can see, they’re not high-skilled, high-paying positions — except possibly for the health care sector — as much as low-skilled, low-paying service jobs. Again, via The Hill:
Jobs growth was centered in the service sector — retailers added 33,000 jobs, the healthcare sector tacked on 40,000 while leisure and hospitality jobs increased by 22,000.
Manufacturing only added 4,000 while construction employment was unchanged in June.