Weak Economy Disappoints Again
Mike BrownfieldMay 4, 2012
Every day, America waits for a brighter future to arrive — the promise of change that President Barack Obama made in 2009 when he set a benchmark for his success on the economy, remarking, “If I don’t have this done in three years, then there’s going to be a one-term proposition.” More than three years later, very little has changed. As today’s jobs report shows, the U.S. economy only added 115,000 jobs in April — well below expectations and far, far below what is necessary to drive the economy back to full employment.
Lackluster employment results dominate today’s report. It’s been three years under the Obama policies, and 12.5 million Americans remain out of work. No demographic group except black workers saw an improvement in their unemployment rate, and 13 percent of black workers remain unemployed. What’s more, the labor force participation fell to the lowest level since 1981 at 63.6 percent. Americans are fleeing this economy when at this stage workers should be returning to the labor force.
This shouldn’t surprise anyone. While little has changed with the economy, little has changed in President Obama’s failed policies. Rampant federal spending continues unchecked; the debt continues to grow; a monstrous tax hike is set to hit Americans on January 1, 2013, infecting the economy with renewed and debilitating uncertainty, and the country’s energy policy remains in shambles.
The latest example of the president’s recycling of his Administration’s failed ideas came in a speech this week to the Building and Construction Trades Department Conference. Obama used the opportunity to pander to his Big Labor allies and called for more federal spending on infrastructure as a panacea for job creation, claiming that his proposals would put “hundreds of thousands of construction workers back to work repairing our roads, our bridges, schools, transit systems.”