28 April 2010

The Democrats have saved the economy

The Bush recession officially ended in July of 2009, and standard measures like GNP growth, the stock market, and corporate profits all show clear signs of a strong economic recovery. But what about the factor that most affects the average person -- jobs?

"There is evidence that an epic hiring boom is about to get started and that competition for the right workers is already pushing up wages in many industries. As a result, paychecks are about to start growing again, for the first time in more than a year.....Retail sales have been on a tear, rising 1.6% in March for the largest gain since November 2007. People who had long denied themselves the things they wanted rushed to buy cars, clothing and furniture. Historically, retail sales have presaged job market improvement coming out of recessions. In fact, over the past three months, according to a U.S. household employment survey from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 1.4 million jobs have been created."

Read the whole article here; there are further positive indicators. The recovery is becoming self-sustaining, no longer dependent on continuation of the government stimulus which jump-started it. In a few areas, such as IT, pay is already rising as employers compete for workers -- and the effect will spread as job growth continues.

There's been a flurry of concern about the drop in global markets due to the ongoing economic crisis in Greece, but the stock market is always going up and down because of one thing or another, and it's unlikely that a default (if it happens) in a country with only 2% of the EU's population would have any noticeable effect on job growth in the US.

Republicans and other gloom-mongers can and will keep up their ever-more-threadbare doomsaying, but the fact remains that the Democrats, helping along the natural resilience of this country, have brought the economy out of the horrendous mess created by the Republicans when they were in power.

The one real caveat is the projection that unemployment could still be as high as 9% at the end of 2010 -- an improvement over its peak of 10.1%, but we should be able to do better. The problem is that the recovery will emphasize sectors which, in many cases, are not the same as those where jobs have disappeared. While wages for many will soon rise with the demand for their skills, we must not forget those who remain jobless. Investment in retraining, stronger protections against age discrimination, and a jobs bill focused on infrastructure are still needed. There are, in short, still things for the government to do -- which is why we need to make sure that the do-nothing party which got us into this mess in the first place doesn't recover control of it.


Blogger Tim said...

I concur! Only thing is people have such short memories. You can bet as a little time goes by, the Republics/conservatives will be out beating those same old tired drums.
The song of trickle down economics.
Less Government,Cut taxes, and let's go to War. They will get their time once again to screw it all up.Why cause we just don't learn!

28 April, 2010 04:35  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Tim: At least their obstruction of financial reform is not winning them any new friends in the electorate. Unfortunately I think the right wing has a rather cleverer gambit in play -- more about that in a future post.

28 April, 2010 08:36  

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