President Doubles Down on Status Quo as Jobs Vanish into Thin Air


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President Obama is a magician without equal. With the waving of his pen, he can make thousands of jobs disappear.

Radio Shack, the venerable electronics retailer, just announced it would be shuttering 1,100 stores following a dismal performance in the past holiday season. Office-supply giant Staples followed with a plan of its own to close 225 stores and focus on its more profitable online business.

This is what happens when Washington policies stifle innovation and throw obstacles in the path to prosperity.

The Labor Department put the picture in broader terms, announcing that the official unemployment rate ticked up from 6.6 percent to 6.7 percent last month.

This figure is in many ways misleading. In the past year, the population grew by some 2.2 million, but the number of people working remains virtually unchanged — the labor force participation dipped one-half percent to 63 percent. It hasn’t been that bad since Jimmy Carter asked daughter Amy for economic advice.

The global outplacement firm Challenger Gray & Christmas issued a report Friday estimating that American business firms were planning to cut more than 41,000 jobs, with retail and financial services taking the largest cuts.

This jibes with the store closings by Radio Shack and Staples, and the results of an extensive survey of small banks conducted by the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, which finds that community banks are hit disproportionately harder by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street regulation law.

Small community banks get up close and personal. They have a specialized knowledge of their customer base and could make loans based on this were it not for the one-size-fits-all Dodd-Frank rules.

The result is small businesses are missing out on loans, to the detriment of both the small banks and small businesses. Jobs that would have been created, aren’t. This is entirely predictable, but it’s the liberal faith that more laws make things better.

Successful and struggling businesses such as Staples realize that they must update the business model to thrive in the 21st century. Going online represents a radical departure from the past, but it makes sense.

The Obama administration, however, clings to old-fashioned Keynesian prescriptions that didn’t work in the 20th century and aren’t working now. Despite the five years of stagnation and failure, the White House still thinks that an easy-money policy and a flood of government spending will cure all ills.
In a rapidly evolving economy, the private sector must be free to innovate, to exploit technological and other changes, to seize the opportunity to expand and create jobs. Instead, the Obama administration continues with the tax-and-spend, borrow-and-spend program that created stagflation under Mr. Carter.

Even Mr. Obama’s own former chief economic adviser, Christina Romer, now says cutting government spending by a dollar generates more growth than increasing federal spending by a dollar.

The Federal Reserve can’t keep printing money forever. The scheme of buying billions of dollars in bonds to keep interest rates low is, even on its own terms, supposed to be a short-term solution. The idea is long past its expiration date.

Mr. Obama hasn’t changed in five years, and it grows tedious and tiresome. He would be a crowd pleaser if he could pull some jobs out his hat. But there’s no magic needed. All he has to do is get out of the way.

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  1. That pretty much sums it up and it boggles the mind, I would hate to think it’s by design.

    Oh sorry, I’m a poet and don’t know it.

  2. Yes Statples’ decline is becuase of the horrible Dodd-Frank!!

    It has nothing to do with double digit declines in paper usages and the pager chain or Amazon or Vistaprint.

    The polar vortex is caused by Dodd-Frank too correct??

    Dodd-Frank maybe hurting smaller banks but the editor should look at the corrput way laws are written in DC alway favoring the big guys.

    We tried the deregulation and cowboy capitalism thing and it led too the biggest economy calamity since the great depression. So the editors would like to go back to losing 700,000 jobs per month?

    Yeah deregualation is great and Obama is a failure.
    Spare me.

    The editors must have had something in their coffee this morning that wasn’t sugar and cream.

    • The closing of brick-and-mortar businesses in favor of on-line ordering is a real challenge to the job numbers, but it isn’t the fault of the President, and Dodd-Frank didn’t make that happen.
      No one is thrilled with the job numbers in the country, but they surely do beat what happened during the Bush crash. The facts are that job numbers are increasing and the the real estate market is showing signs of life. If we make the investment in infrastructure that is necessary to keep America among the world powers, jobs would be much less a problem. I realize that the Party of “No” would rather see this country fail than do that, though.

      • The actual job creation numbers under Bush and Obama have little difference. Bush’s 2nd term saw 1.1 Million jobs created and Obama’s first term saw 1.2 Million. The percentages are almost identical. One has to go back to Herbert Hoover to find a president that performed worse than either one of the presidents of the 21 century. The short historical answer just looking at the data is that Bush and Obama are both in the back of the pack when it comes to job creation. The both beat Hoover though.

      • Job numbers appear to improve due labor force paricpation declines and where is RE thriving..banks are closing mortgage depts due to lack of residential demand and there is low commerical demand. Local RE improvment is due to pent up demand that is not sustainable give tight credit andweak job growth. Thank you ACA and all those Obama tax cut that were temporary and have now expired. You are right on infrastructure…more investment in fracking and buiild new refineries to stop burning our food for fuel..

      • LKB, you never fail to amaze me with depths of your mental state. You try to claim the facts show that the great dictator has improved the economy, yet you have no real facts to prove it. Show us some comparisons to past numbers, quoted articles? real numbers? You spout whatever crap oozes from your programmed brain and then act like it is god’s word. The only facts of the situation are the ones pointing to the current regime changing the way unemployment and job growth are reported. they obfuscate the numbers and switch things around, so that they look positive, when in reality if they were compared “apples to apples” with the reports from the 80’s/90/s we would see how damaging this socialist has been to our great country.

        Another idiot that thinks the government spending money will save the world. Like I told the Brainless one, government does not create wealth, they take from others and redistribute to those that follow their directions.

    • BB: I seem to recall the 80’2 and early 90’s being a time of prosperity, with people working, jobs a plenty, money to spend on non-necessities. Please stop trying to tell people that Reganomics didn’t work. It is a proven success, while your wonderful socialist dictator in the office now insists and expanding government and then thinks that is creating jobs. The money to pat government workers comes from the taxpayer and therefore nothing is created in the economy. Just like increasing the amount of welfare $ given, does not improve the economy. It is just a shuffling of $ from one persons pocket to anthers.

  3. “Even Mr. Obama’s own former chief economic adviser, Christina Romer, now says cutting government spending by a dollar generates more growth than increasing federal spending by a dollar.”

    My favorite quote in the article. Even the hardest of heads can be persuaded by results. One would think the President would have the good sense to realize what his former sycophant has.

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