Unemployment in America: a Portrait of a Nation in Decline

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

This sobering graphic by Latoya Eguwuekwe, charts the shocking rise of unemployment across the U.S. starting in 2007 through July 15, 2010. The U.S. Dept. of Labor estimates 31 million Americans are now without a job.

The graphic is a time-lapse picture of the U3 unemployment statistic, which doesn’t account for the millions of underemployed and those who’ve simply gave up looking for work completely.

It must be said that no president can single-handedly wave a magic wand and create jobs out of thin air but, it’s worth noting by the end of President Bill Clinton’s eighth year in office, with a series of sex scandals and impeachment hearings swirling around him, still managed to create 23 million new jobs.

While President Obama is no President Clinton, and in all fairness, Mr. Obama was became president in the midst of the worst economy since the Great Depression, President Obama must do more to create the conditions that lead to the creation of new jobs. The U.S. will not remain a First World nation indefinitely with unemployment numbers like this.

At the end of the day, President Bill Clinton was correct all along when he opined, “It’s the economy, stupid.”

This entry was posted in Democrats, News, Obama Administration, U.S. Economy, Unemployment and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Unemployment in America: a Portrait of a Nation in Decline

  1. Arizona Leatherneck says:

    What saved FDR and the US economy was America entering the war.

    We’ve been at war on two overt fronts, and at least 12 covert fronts for 9 years and guess what? The U.S. economy is still in the gutter. So what’s the answer?

  2. Estacada says:

    What’s sinking our asses today is the debt.

    Bush cut taxes on wage earners making more than $200,000 a year twice then asked the Congress for permission to invade Iraq. The Treasury was empty so we started borrowing, and borrowing, and borrowing and now, we’re in the hole to the tune of $13 trillion.

    The size of the debt is going to be the thing that finally destroys this nation.

  3. Mets Fan says:

    “….by the end of President Bill Clinton’s eighth year in office, with a series of sex scandals and impeachment hearings swirling around him, still managed to create 23 million new jobs.”

    Big Dog raised taxes on people making for than $200,000 and the US Treasury was flooded with money.

    Also, Big Dog didn’t let himself get led around by the nose by the neocons in the Pentagon.

  4. Brigadoon says:

    Obama’s economic team has instructed the Federal Reserve to sit on anywhere from $3 to $4 trillion and not lend it. This approach by Tim Geithner and Larry Sumners, it is argued, keeps inflation in check. If the Federal Reserve suddenly unleashed this vast amount of money into the economy, unemployment would fall but inflation would climb. Food, medicine and energy costs would skyrocket.

  5. Bungy says:

    Go figure. Yet one more place where we need stronger leadership. In this case, a firm no-compromise rejection of the “loyal opposition” that wants to renew the upper end of the Bush tax cuts. But also a firmer commitment to stimulating the economy and building jobs with programs like diversifying (preferably greenly) our energy. In other words, all those policy initiatives that seem stalled because of a (perceived!) lack of “public support.”

    I am ready for this administration to start realizing that the folks shouting the loudest are not necessarily (a) in the majority or (b) doing so for the good of the country. And I am tired of folks on the Left acquiescing to the argument that it was WWII and nothing in the New Deal that got us out of the Great Depression. That is, at best, a contested assertion…and one deployed primarily to stave off dreaded (by the Right, anyway) FDR-style “socialism.”

    Can we really afford to wait until after the November election for the Democrats to take a chance and lead? If they really want to flummox the presumed resurgence of the GOP in the midterms, maybe they should actually try doing something like, I don’t know, governing.

  6. Shayne K. says:

    I voted for President Obama.
    I donated $$$ to his campaign.
    I preferred him over McCain. I still do.
    But, I don’t see a lot of energy or interest by his administration to really get down and tackle the awful unemployment problem in America.
    Who know? Maybe much goes on behind the scenes that I don’t see? But this much I know. The president spent all of 2009 on national healthcare and ignored jobs despite the polls that showed the American people were pleading with him to fix employment.

  7. Conejo1982 says:

    In California’s Imperial County, a vast agricultural region just east of San Diego County, unemployment is more than 40%.

    Home prices have fallen by 2/3rds, and half of the businesses in downtown El Centro — the largest town in the county, are shuttered.

    I hope this isn’t a cautionary tale for the rest of the USA.

  8. R.J. says:

    El Centro was never an oasis for prosperity. High paying jobs out have been practically nonexistent for as long as I can remember. This is one place that will probably never recover.

  9. Jolly Roger says:

    What saved FDR and the US economy was America entering the war.

    This simply is not the truth. Go back and look at the numbers like GDP growth, employment growth, and industrial output throughout the 1930s. America’s economy had a rough patch caused by the (Rushpubliscum inspired) austerity of 1936 and 1937, but we were on the mend. Significantly so.

  10. Jolly Roger says:

    The President has been hampered (and some of that is, admittedly, his own doing) by the Rushpubliscums, who are all of a sudden deficit hawks when it comes to putting Americans back to work.

    He refuses to take to the streets and call the Rushpubliscums out on their deliberate attempts to destabilize the economy. I don’t know if it’d make any difference if he did it now, after all this time, but he ought to at least try.

  11. bradfrmphnx says:

    The Republicans recently voted no on a bill that would have provided small businesses with loans that they desperately need right now. As the economy is taking baby steps back and forth towards improvement, small businesses need capital that banks won’t give to them. I say that Obama has been trying to do something about the economy but is continually getting stymied by the party of no. His inability to stand up against them has been noted by all. I’d sick Hillary on them, she can rip anybody a new ass.

  12. ultragreen says:

    The U.S. economy has been in decline for the past 30 years — the neoconservative policies of the Reagan-Bush-Clinton-Bush era are responsible for this decline. Unfortunately, Obama has surrounded himself with a bunch of neoconservative Clintonites and has not reversed these policies to any significant extent.

    “Free trade” and the export of high-paying U.S. jobs to Mexico, China, and other sweatshop nations has precipitated a sharp decline in the manufacturing sector in the U.S. economy. As a result, very few consumer goods are made in the U.S. Whenever the government attempts to stimulate the economy by providing more money to consumers, they spend it on consumers good that have been manufactured abroad. As a result, the government stimulates economies abroad (mainly China) rather than the U.S. economy. Similarly, if the government makes more money available to big business, they invest this money abroad by outsourcing work and building new factories abroad. A growing number of high-paying white-collar jobs are also being outsourced to China and India. Once again, the government can’t stimulate the economy.

    It will take decades to repair the damage that has been done to the U.S. economy. Unfortunately, there is little evidence that Obama or members of Congress are even aware of this problem. To make matters worse, the large international corporations that dominate our economy are hostile to trade barriers as this would force them to spend more money on labor and reduce profits. Therefore, they will use their money to lobby congress to lower any remaining trade barriers, rather than increase them, and they will use their money to elect politicians who will continue these disastrous economic policies.

    Unfortunately, many U.S. citizens don’t understand how the economy works either, and they are unlikely to provide meaningful pressure to change these economic policies at the Federal level.

    Yet another problem, which has become steadily more severe during the past several decades, is the growing income gap between the rich and the poor while the middle class steadily declines. It is not possible to maintain a high-tech developed economy if the rich are allowed to hoard all of the wealth. Furthermore, the rich have a tendency to spend more of their money abroad on luxury goods and services, and they also use their surplus capital to create “investment bubbles” that are unsustainable and useless.

    As a result, I think another Great Depression is inevitable.

  13. ZhahnDoe says:

    Not to worry. When it comes to reshaping the U.S. economy, the Obama admistration’s top guns are bringing to bear all of the entrepreneurial zeal and know-how picked up in their lifetime careers as university professors, non-profit community organizers and political sinecures.

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