Skip to comments.Thomas Sowell: Net Job Losses Under Obama Have Been Devastating
Posted on 07/10/2012 6:57:16 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
One of the reasons for the popularity of political rhetoric is that everybody can be right, in terms of their own rhetoric, no matter how much the rhetoric of one side contradicts the rhetoric of the other side.
President Obama constantly repeats how many millions of jobs have been created during his administration, while his critics constantly repeat how many millions of jobs have been lost during his administration. How can both of them be right or, at least, how can they both get away with what they are saying?
There are jobs and there are net jobs. This is true not only today but in years past.
During the 1980s, when there were huge losses of jobs in the steel industry, the government restricted the importation of foreign steel. It has been estimated that this saved 5,000 jobs in the American steel industry.
But of course restriction of competition from lower-priced imported steel made steel more expensive to American producers of products containing steel. Therefore the price of these products rose, making them less in demand at these higher prices, causing losses of sales at home and in the world market.
The bottom line is that, while 5,000 jobs were saved in the American steel industry, 26,000 jobs were lost in American industries that produced products made of steel. On net balance, the country lost jobs by restricting the importation of steel.
None of this was peculiar to the steel industry. Restrictions on the importation of sugar are estimated to have cost three times as many jobs in the confection industry as they saved in the sugar industry. The artificially high price of sugar in the U.S. led some American producers of confections to relocate to Mexico and Canada, where the price of sugar is lower.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.investors.com ...
LOOK AT THE NET EFFECT. DON’T JUST COUNT THE NUMBER OF JOBS CREATED, YOU MUST ALSO COUNT THE NUMBER OF JOBS LOST AND THEN SEE THE DIFFERENCE.
When President Obama boasts of the number of jobs created during his administration, the numbers he cites may be correct, but he doesn’t count the other jobs that were lost during his administration. His critics cite the latter. Both can claim to be right because they are talking about different things.
What has been the net effect? During this administration, the proportion of the working-age population that has a job has fallen to the lowest level in decades. The official unemployment rate does not count the millions of people who have simply given up looking for a job.
If everybody gave up looking for a job, the official unemployment rate would fall to zero. But that would hardly mean that the problem was solved or that the “stimulus” worked. Creating particular jobs does not mean a net increase in jobs.
Nobody cuts through the Washington double-speak like Sowell.
Cost-benefit analysis is usually very sloppy. If you are not willing to acknowledge all of the costs you have no right to tout all of the benefits.