11.07.2011 0

Population grows faster than economy and jobs

By Rick Manning — 125,000 jobs created.

That’s how many new jobs our economy needs to create each month just to keep up with the normal growth of the population.

That’s why President Clinton Labor Secretary Robert Reich termed the October unemployment numbers, “I wish there were light at the end of this long jobless tunnel but there’s not very much light.  This 80,000 figure (jobs created in October) looks pretty good if you don’t put it in context, we need 125,000 new jobs a month just to keep up with population growth.”

Reich continued, “It is not really an improvement, you have to bend and twist and look at this in very distorted ways to assume that this is good news.  This is not good news.”

And in a nutshell, Robert Reich gets to the Obama problem.

Every month that our nation fails to produce at least 125,000 jobs, we fall further behind with more and more people either leaving the workforce or never choosing to enter it.

With fewer than 125,000 jobs created in a month, not a single job is created for the 13.9 million people who are already unemployed.  To put 13.9 million people in perspective, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania only has a population of 12.8 million, and only four states in the entire U.S. have a larger population than the number of unemployed.

Incredibly, the day before President Clinton’s Labor Secretary Reich was throwing cold water on the job creation numbers, Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) head Lisa Jackson was calling opponents of her job-killing environmental regulations “jack-booted thugs” in a speech given in Berkeley, Calif.

Just how bad are the Obama EPA regulations for those 13.9 million?  1.44-million-lost-jobs bad.    Analysis of government data by the National Economic Research Associates found that Obama’s EPA regulations will cost America 1.44 million jobs between 2013 and 2020 leaving behind a tsunami of job losses for the next administration to try to clean up.

It is almost exasperating to hear the Obama campaign continually blame everyone but themselves for the stunned dormant economy, when all they have to do is travel to one of those inconvenient red states, like North Dakota, and find a place that actually has jobs being created.

What is North Dakota’s secret?

The government is staying out of the way and allowing private industry to utilize safe, new technologies to unlock the oil reserves trapped beneath their soil.  North Dakota’s unemployment rate stands at 3.5 percent.

In fact, oil production in North Dakota is accelerating so rapidly that the state will soon pass Alaska and move into second place behind Texas.  The sad fact is the reason North Dakota is on a trajectory to pass Alaska is not all about growth, but is more due to the stifling of oil and gas development in Alaska by the federal government.

The story of job stifling regulations is not limited to oil and gas development, but the North Dakota private job creation miracle is poised to take place in states like Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York, which have natural gas reserves that use a decades-old process combined with some newer technologies and have unlocked tremendous reserves, creating the beginning of a new energy jobs boom in states that are suffering from the loss of industrial jobs.

The ultimate irony of the private-sector success in creating jobs in the oil and gas industries, where they are allowed to operate, is that Obama’s Energy Department has been using taxpayer money to bet on more exotic technologies with little hope of generating a profit or producing long term, stable jobs.

The well-documented failure of a $535 million Obama bet on solar panel manufacturer Solyndra was followed this month with the announcement that two more Obama bets on green companies have come up snake eyes.   One a Canadian-owned new geothermal technology firm based in Harry Reid’s home state of Nevada, and a Massachusetts-based “energy-storage company.”

The cost to the taxpayers?

Known taxpayer exposure on just these two additional bad bets approaches $190 million, which may make Barack Obama the Jon Corzine of green investing.  He just keeps losing money and will continue doing so until someone takes the keys to the Ferrari away.

At the end of the day, the problem with our economy is not that private business cannot create jobs.

The problem is not that we cannot cut the number of unemployed in half in the next few years.

The problem is that we have an administration that would rather have people rotting at home depending upon the government for food stamps, unemployment checks and health care, than let our free market system work and return the unemployment rate back to historical norms in the 5 to 6 percent range.

We have an administration that believes that government creates jobs, and that job creation is separate from wealth creation.

Unfortunately, we have an administration full of people who have never created a single job, and don’t realize that the profit motive produces the capital, the innovation and the willingness to take personal risks that create jobs.

Wouldn’t it be nice if they went to North Dakota and asked what the secret is.  But since there isn’t an Ivy League institution located in the state, they probably don’t know anyone who lives there.

There is an old saying that continuing to do the same thing and expecting different results is the definition of insanity.

I just call it stuck on stupid.

Rick Manning is the Director of Communications for Americans for Limited Government. You can follow Rick on Twitter at @RManning957.

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