Here are three news-story headlines that get to the nub of Americ'a economy:
1.Unemployment rate falls to 8.1%; 115,000 jobs were added, well short of the 168,000 that had been expected.
2. "Job openings reach three year high - The number of positions waiting to be filled increased by 172,000 to 3.74 million."
So there are more jobs available now than at almost any time President Obama has been in office. Yet that record number of jobs are not being filled. Why? Well, en route to the third headline we'll take another look at America's labor-force participation. This is a graph that shows the percentage of people who are eligible to work, age 16 and higher, who actually are working. This is the chart prepared by the Bureau of Labor Statistics and is current as of May 8.
The present rate is 63.6 percent. The Bureau also presents the historic rate, by month, for the past 10 calendar years. Try to find a month in which the rate was as low as today:
And so the third headline:
3."Is President Obama’s Law Keeping Unemployment High?"
Two years after President Obama signed it into law, there is evidence the slow economic recovery could be partly due to his namesake health care law.Let's go to the chart: "The Obamacare Effect on Employment"
According to analyses conducted by the Heritage Foundation and others, the passage of President Obama’s law correlates with a dramatic slowdown in the economic recovery and in private sector hiring. Prior to the law’s passage in April 2010, private sector job creation had improved by 67,600 jobs per month since Obama’s inauguration. But in May 2010, private employers created only 48,000 net jobs, and private sector hiring became stagnant, averaging only 6,700 more jobs created per month into the early months of 2012.
Even without reading any of the story accompanying the headlines, you get the relationship between this president's economic policies and private-sector employment: Obama has raised the marginal costs of hiring new workers. So businesses sharply reduce hiring. Jobs therefore go unfilled and fewer people are hired than even gullible government economists expect (see also here). Yet the official unemployment rate falls because the Bureau does not count as unemployed people who have dropped out of the total labor pool altogether or who want to work full time but have taken part-time jobs. Even so, there are fewer adults working now than at any time in the last 10 years (actually much longer, but that's the chart).
But not to worry! The intrepid USNews knows the real story and provides your bonus headline number four:
4. "Improving Economy Driving Independents Back to Obama; Analysts say increased Obama support tied to job growth."
Are the in-tank, Kool-Aid drunk media really that oblivious? Why yes, yes they are.
This, too: "Desperately avoiding Obamanomics and Obamacare"