Skip to comments.The Clinton Manufacturing Recession - Bush inherited this job-challenged economy.
Posted on 05/16/2003 5:10:43 AM PDT by ReleaseTheHounds
Gross Domestic Product has expanded six consecutive quarters and industrial production grew in 2002. But total non-farm payroll employment has declined by 2.1 million jobs since its peak in March 2001, leading critics to pin the decrease on President Bush and to describe the current economic situation as a jobless recovery.
But closer examination of the employment data shows that if blame is to be awarded, it should go to ex-President Clinton. The data also reveal the need for the Bush tax cut.
Job losses are concentrated in the economys manufacturing private industry sector, which peaked in April 1998 on Clintons watch. In the ensuing five years, 2.6 million manufacturing jobs (14 percent) have disappeared.
You can call this the Clinton Manufacturing Recession and it's the major reason why total non-farm employment has not grown.
The services-producing sector 82 percent of the economy has created 353,000 new jobs under President Bush since reaching a trough in December 2001. Job growth is spread across two private-industry sectors: services and the sector that includes finance, insurance, and real estate (FIRE).
The National Bureau of Economic Research, the official arbiter of cyclical turning points, has said the economy reached a peak in March 2001. FIRE employment was 7.6 million in March 2001 and has grown to 7.8 million as of April 2003. Services employment was 41 million in March 2001 and has edged up to 41.4 million as of last month.
Growth in the services sector under President Bush has been greatest in the area of health and education. Gains have also occurred in engineering and management services, a hi-tech component. Government employment, counted in the services-producing sector, has also grown, but the largest gains are in non-federal employment.
Not every services-producing industry sector has grown under President Bush. Declines occurred in retail and wholesale trade, as well as transportation and public utilities. But these drop-offs pale in comparison with the manufacturing job losses that started under Clinton.
Nondurable manufacturing employment peaked at 7.9 million workers in January 1995. Components that peaked under Clinton included: food and kindred products (October 1995); textile mill products (November 1994); printing and publishing (May 1998); and rubber and miscellaneous plastics (February 2000). Many of these jobs were once concentrated in the South.
Durable manufacturing peaked at 11.2 million workers in April 1998. Components that peaked under Clinton included: lumber and wood (February 2000); furniture and fixtures (July 2000); primary metals (January 1998); fabricated metals (July 2000); industrial machinery and equipment (March 1998); electronic and other electrical equipment (November 2000); transportation equipment (October 1998); instruments and related products (March 1998); and miscellaneous manufacturing (April 1998). Some of the largest durables goods employment is in the upper Midwest.
No manufacturing component has peaked under President Bush. Stone, clay, and glass a durable component peaked in January 2001, the month Clinton left office. Six other manufacturing components peaked pre-1993.
President Bush inherited an economy on the brink of recession. Employment in the goods-producing sector (manufacturing, construction, mining) and industrial production peaked under Clinton. GDP contracted for three quarters in 2001 but has expanded for six quarters under President Bush. Yet total non-farm employment has not grown due to manufacturing job losses. Far from a jobless recovery, the economy is suffering from the Clinton Manufacturing Recession, and is in need of fiscal stimulus.
This article properly points out the horrible manufacturing economy Clinton handed over to Bush. This is a huge piece of our employment base and the major reason for the rising unemployment in the past 2 years.
Just add this to the many reasons that it will take DECADES and GENERATIONS to clean the effects of Clintonism out of this great nation and its body politic. This is your Legacy, BUBBA!
One thing the American electorate had better get wise to is that government creates no jobs except government jobs.
With all levels (city, county, state, federal) of government increasing their taxation to satisfy a natural greed for more staffers and boondoggles I don't see where we really have a chance.
Americans look the other way while all this mugging by government is happening to them. They don't look at the phone and utility bills to see what a chunk is removed by local and federal government, and until they wise up to the ever increasing sales taxes being collected for any expenditure, they'll be in the same boat as California where the base sales tax percentage is going to be 7.5%.
Our levels of elected government work overtime to prove that over the long haul representative government commits suicide when the people have indeed had quite enough.
I fear that you are right -- and it reflects (as I said in another reply) how ignorant the American populace is on most things economic.
So while you may be right, I will do all that I can to continue to point to the pile of challenges he inherited -- we should NEVER FORGET... The same way we should NEVER FORGET 9-11. These events (job loss, economic malaise and 9-11) are connected and both were inherited from Bubba -- one of, if not THE worst president in the past 100 years.
Gee, I'm sorry if you're a little tired... Bush has made plenty of mistakes (first Treasury Secretary, accepting phase-in of tax-rate cuts, protection of steel industry, stupid Farm Bill, less than vigorous reaction to scandals in Corporate America) but he inherited the worst collection of problems and challenges of any president since Reagan (the Carter fiasco) and when you throw in the challenges of Terrorism and North Korea, perhaps this is even more challenging.
It's "tired" people like you who succumb to the stupid entreaties of Democrat programs to address our every problem. If you spent a bit of energy supporting the people who want to get the government
off your back and out of your wallet you might be surprised how much better things might be in the long term (even intermediate term). Even I will grant you: we're not going to see a turn-around immediately.
The thing that bailed out Bubba's *ss was the collapse in energy prices (in effect this was a major offset for the economy, businesses and consumers compensating for Bubba's tax increase) and the benefits of NAFTA (the only smart thing Bubba did in his first administration). On the deficit front, he benefited from the S&L crisis being essentially cleaned up under Bush (that was adding tens of billions to the annual deficit -- this disappeared after 1992 and actually turned into a surplus as the Resolution Trust Co. spun out reformed S&Ls). And you are right: the GOP takeover in 1994 brought spending discipline that the Demos never planned on (plus some tax cuts and importantly the capital gains tax cut in 1998, I believe).
It gets tiresome, but we have to keep repeating the TRUTH about that awful period known as the Clinton Administration.
The assault on Microsoft had started a year or two earlier, but the rulings on Microsoft were coming to a head later that spring. The CONTEMPT of Joel Klein and Janet Reno for Microsoft and virtually ALL PRIVATE INDUSTRY was just stunning and, I believe, chilling to investors and business leaders.
The refusal to allow Worldcom and Sprint combine (yes, it would have been a horrible combination, in retrospect, but that wasn't the reason the Justice Department didn't allow the combination) was another terrible signal that discouraged investors.
All of these things, along with the internet/technology bubble, led to the wipe-out of $7 trillion of investor "wealth" (or perceived wealth). Sorry to disagree with people who don't buy into a "wealth-effect" on our economy: you don't have $7 trillion evaporate and not have a significant impact on the economy or growth.
Most of the carnage took place before President Bush came into office in late January, 2001.