BLS May Delay October Jobs Report Due to Frankenstorm

By: Monday October 29, 2012 12:30 pm

The known late-campaign “surprise” were the final pre-election jobs report scheduled for Friday. Both campaigns were poised to jump on whatever positive or negative numbers came out of the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

 

Issa Floats Hearings on Jobs Data, Joining BLS Truther Brigade (Or Did It Join Him?)

By: Thursday October 11, 2012 12:12 pm

The conspiracy theory about the Obama Administration forcing the Bureau of Labor Statistics into deliberately fixing the September jobs report has found its purchase in the most likely of places: the House Republican caucus. Darrell Issa, the chair of the House Oversight Committee, told Fox Business Network this morning that he would open an investigation into the derivation of the numbers in the jobs report.

Conservative Conspiracy Theorists Decide BLS Massaged Data to Boost Employment Numbers

By: Friday October 5, 2012 10:20 am

Because data is just fungible to the political leanings of whoever confronts it, we predictably saw a number of conservatives question today’s jobs report, suggesting that the Bureau of Labor Statistics fudged the data to help the President’s re-election campaign. Leading this charge was former GE CEO Jack Welch on Twitter. I think the government should make a deal with Welch – they’ll admit to massaging the data if he cleans up all the PCBs in the Hudson River personally.

On a more serious note, this is really pretty outrageous, and Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, whose department includes the BLS, is right to be insulted.

Labor Department Revision Adds 386,000 Jobs, Makes Obama Net Job Creator for First Time

By: Thursday September 27, 2012 10:20 am

Here’s the BLS’ release. Because it’s based on tax records from the employers themselves, it’s seen as more reliable than the monthly payroll statistics. As the article notes, private sector job growth went up around 0.4%, while the public sector dropped 0.3%. This has been the story of the last four years, a recovery in the private sector weighted down by a depression in the public sector. If public sector jobs grew at the rate seen in the Presidencies of George W. Bush and Ronald Reagan, we would have somewhere around 7.0% unemployment, if not lower.

Republicans’ War on Jobs: Propose Cutting Training, AmeriCorps

By: Tuesday February 15, 2011 5:15 pm

Despite jobs being by far the top issue with voters, the Republicans in Congress, in their rush for immediate austerity, have committed themselves to making the unemployment crisis worse. Among the many cuts in the House Republican’s continuing resolution are cuts to “excess spending in Labor Department job training programs” and eliminating funds for AmeriCorps.

Unemployment Rate Falls to 9.0% Despite Weak Job Growth

By: Friday February 4, 2011 8:00 am

This is a very strange jobs report from the Labor Department. The economy gained a paltry 36,000 jobs in January according to the report, which is far below expectations and a real disaster for the economy. Nevertheless, the topline unemployment rate fell 0.4% to 9.0%.

How does this happen?

What an Economic Recovery Policy Without Congressional Action Could Look Like

By: Friday September 3, 2010 12:45 pm

In my post about the rumored tax-cut stimulus package being tossed around at the White House, I quoted Dean Baker, who had some ideas on what you could do to stimulate the economy in a fantasy scenario. Since Republicans aren’t likely to let much of anything pass, and a jobs package would be an argument for the elections, something to run on, I think it’s worth making it as robust and attention-grabbing, and as functional, as possible. For example, paying unemployed people to do stuff as a policy.

Job Numbers Maybe the Most Important “Tracking Poll” for November

By: Friday April 2, 2010 9:01 am

While political reporting is often focused on tracking polls, fund-raising, and public scandals, the election is often decided by more important macro factors, like the health of the economy.

Labor: Wow, What a Week!

By: Thursday March 5, 2009 1:30 pm

There’s too much going on this week to focus on one topic. So here’s a rundown from the world of working people and their unions.

-Hilda Solis made her first public appearance as labor secretary during the AFL-CIO Executive Council meeting in Miami, where she toured an Electrical Workers (IBEW) union training facility and held a meeting in the inner city with 700 community members.

Death and the Bush Administration

By: Thursday July 31, 2008 10:30 am

Last week, a confluence of events reminded the U.S. public that it’s not just the food we eat that’s increasingly dangerous in our daily lives—inadequate safety on the job still is killing America’s working people.

The week ended with two more deaths from construction cranes, this time in Illinois. These fatalities came within days of four deaths due to a crane collapse in Houston—and raises to 18 the number of workers who died from crane-related deaths so far this year, according to an estimate by The Wall Street Journal, which doesn’t include bystander deaths.

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