Friday, June 11, 2004

How does it feel to squeeze the American consumer and then ask for their votes?

June 11, 2004
Weasel's argument is flawed:
Re:"Don't Take Cover" -6/10

The first substantial addition to my piece was:
"947,000 [jobs] since March."

It's nothing new. I understand that jobs are being created, its just that full-time jobs aren't. The aggregate number of Full-time employees has been on the decline since January.
That isn't the case, as your invalid link to the BLS proves. Here is a more accurate link.

Follow the section for part-time persons of work :: economic conditions. It is down since January 2004. Ultimately, it may surprise Daniel to see that part time workers are rising...in the summer. This is why you use seasonally adjusted figures.

CAUTION - THIS NEXT PART WILL GIVE HEADACHES TO ANYONE WHO HAS ANY KNOWLEDGE OF RUDAMENTARY MATHEMATICS

Rudimentary knowledge of spell check.
When I mentioned the 1.4 million jobs created between August and January weasel writes:

"Shock. Why, that's just as shocking as that the employment picture was worse in Clinton's first term than Bush's first term despite Recession, 9-11 and war.
"1992 7.5
"1993 6.9
"1994 6.1
"1995 5.6"

1. Your sentence needs grammatical rewording.
That Clinton's employment picture was worse than Bush's?
2. Clinton didn't become president until 1993, so 7.5 is a remnant of Bush I.
Clinton was elected in 1992. It doesn't matter, I fail to see how the President controls the business cycle in any case.
Here are his 1st term employment rates:
1992 7.5 (Bush I)

1993 6.9
1994 6.1
1995 5.6
1996 5.4
Average: 6.53%
Here are Bush II's:
2000 4.0 (Clinton)
2001 4.7
2002 5.8
2003 6.0
2004(p)~5.7
Average: 5.24%
So Clinton (1st term): -2.1%
And Bush II (only term): +1.7%

Who has the better looking 1st term? Hint: We're not aiming for unemployment here.

Except for that whole war, recession and 9-11 kerfuffle, Bush has the better employment average. As for the matter, the -2.1 and +1.7% are statistically incorrect (you're not using the rate of change formula).
Moving on...

"Perhaps someone should explain to Dan the difference between a reduction in the unemployment numbers, the unemployment rate and the jobless claims numbers. Here, let me explain.

"Suppose Nation X had two industries, guns and butter. Butter laid off 200 workers while Guns hired 3000. There would, therefore, be an increase in the jobless claims rate...and a decrease in the unemployment rate. Thus, jobs would be created, not destroyed."

Nice logic, however the finding above is the aggregate number of employed persons, part-time and full-time, and not once did I mention a jobless claims rate nor the unemployement rate. In fact, I believe it was Weasel himself who brought up the unemployment rate.

There is a difference between the unemployment rate and the jobless claims number. The jobless claims number is part of the endemic process of creative destruction. It was on a West Wing episode if that helps you...

"Shock. Why, that's just as shocking as that the employment picture was worse in Clinton's first term than Bush's first term despite Recession, 9-11 and war.
"1992 7.5
"1993 6.9
"1994 6.1
"1995 5.6"

But I digress...
"So you say Rising Oil Prices and not the search for jobs is the problem? Ah."

Someone needs to provide Weasel with a dictionary, and with a dog-ear on the page that has the word "aid".
aid:To help or furnish with help, support, or relief.
-The American Heritage Dictionary
I cut aid out of it because you are trying to muddy the waters. The reason that the public is less confident in the direction of the economy is a function of the price of oil and recent pricing action should leave you with heartburn.
I included rising oil prices as a factor which was aiding the hidden downfall of full-time jobs in driving economic sentiment down. It's a present factor, and I'm not going to pretend to ignore it, like Republicans do when they try to prove a point.
Pretend to ignore it. Sure...
"It would appear, chillingly, that the Investor class is confident in the economy and would become more so if, oh, I don't know, oil prices fall"
Case and point. I forgot, Bush only cares about how investors perceive the economy.
All 80 million or so.
And finally... in response to my cute little catch phrase which subtly alludes to Bush's very frequent vacations:

"Well, yes, he's not the President, he's a Senator. And not for long."
The link attributed to this line is for an article which describes what will happen when John Kerry loses his seat in the senate when he becomes the president...
...I'm glad we're on the same page here. :)

I try to humor you. The point is that you can not run for President and Senator at the same time. Do you think I picked a Massachusetts newspaper for sport? Yes. The fundamental reality is that you lose a seat when you run for elected office (except in the buoyant case of Joseph I Lieberman).

Posted by Mahmoud the Weasel at 5:39 PM |

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