Saturday, October 09, 2021

The Economy Is Not Great And GOP Likes It That Way

The Labor Department statistics showed the economy produced 194,000 new jobs in September. And the media is saying that is a bad thing -- that it should have produced 500,000 or more new jobs. 

Let's get a bit of perspective about that. In a normal economy, 194,000 jobs would be hailed as a success. 

And that same media is ignoring the fact that the unemployment rate dropped a whopping 0.4 points -- to a rate of 4.8%. That's the first time in about 18 months that the rate has been below 5.0%. This is something that should be celebrated.

I agree that we are not in a normal economy. Too many people remain out of work, and the unemployment rate is still too high. But that can be fixed.

If we gave more child care help, increased the minimum wage, and got enough people vaccinated to end the pandemic, we would trigger a booming economy -- an economy that would fill available jobs and lower the unemployment rate to 4.0% (or lower). People want to work, but they want to work in a safe environment, know that their children are affordably cared for, and they can make a livable wage.

The problem is the Republicans in Congress. They oppose vaccinations (even though most of them have been vaccinated), oppose raising the minimum wage (even though they make about triple the median wage in the country), and oppose the Build Back Better program (which would help workers with child care).

The sad fact is the Republican leaders want the economy to suffer. They think that is their ticket to return to power. Their own policies are what has caused the poor economy and vast economic inequality in the country, but they are hoping voters are too stupid to know that. 

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