(cross-posted at Innocent Bystanders)
Upon accepting his nomination at the DNC convention last month, the President presented quite a list of specific accomplishments he wanted to achieve. I talked about one a couple of days ago; his promise to double exports by the end of 2014. Not gonna happen, not that he has much to do with it anyhow.
Today I’d like to address a second Obambition: adding 1 million manufacturing jobs by the end of 2016. The President is fond of claiming that he’s created 500,000 manufacturing jobs since January 2010. For example, here’s the chart that Obama for America had in the brochure they sent me yesterday:
You can see that while his claim is strictly true, his clever policy going forward is to simply extend the line from the existing data to 2016. He’s assuming that the rebound rate of job recovery will continue well into what should be a normal growth phase (that doesn’t normally happen).
But there are two additional problems with this chart. The first is that the data they use is slightly (and conveniently) outdated. Here’s the latest from the Bureau of Labor Statistics:
You see that leveling off that started last March? Yeah, for the last 7 months manufacturing jobs have been flatlining. Since the geniuses at Obama for America stopped using data in April and projected thereafter, they haven’t noticed that in the last 6 months we’ve gained 0 manufacturing jobs. Yeah, zero.
So I took the liberty of updating their chart (without the artsy wiggles in the predicted part):
The second problem lies in their cherrypicking of the time period. The job gains they show above look impressive because they’re starting from the lowest point in the data. So let’s look at the big picture for a moment:
Now you can see that Obama’s claim that he’ll get manufacturing jobs up to 13 million by the end his second term means that they still won’t have recovered to where they were at the beginning of the recession. Yes, folks, President Obama is telling us that it will take a total of 8 years to get manufacturing jobs back to Nov 2008 – the month he was originally elected.
Remember – this is his bold new plan to resurrect manufacturing. He proudly trumpeted this completely underwhelming goal to the nation, and it’s a basic part of his platform. And of course, even with its inadequacy, he’s already failing to meet it.
The manufacturing job sector’s recovery has been pathetic. It has taken us 4 years to recapture 14% of the manufacturing jobs that were lost. President Obama is promising us that it’ll take another 4 years to recapture the next 28%.
And after 8 years of Obamanomics, even if it’s completely successful, we still won’t be halfway to full recovery.