Media Distortion: The Economy Roars Back
March 09, 2012
RUSH: There's an interesting story to start with today. This is a Politico story, and it was out last night. Obviously this story was written before this morning's unemployment report came out. Now, the unemployment number, 8.3%, no change, and you would not believe the way this is being reported. Why, we are in a roaring-back economy. We have got a recovery that's unprecedented. Have you noticed it, Dawn? No, I mean the reporting. Wherever you look on radio, television, and print, you would believe that we are sitting atop the greatest powder keg of an economic recovery that there ever has been. It is universal.
Folks, I addressed yesterday the reason that there seems to be back and forth, up and down mood changes in this country. Really, if the media in this country were as suspicious of Democrats as they are of Republicans, if the media treated powerful Democrats with the same suspicion and curiosity and doubt and dare I say dislike and hatred as they treat Republicans, you'd have an entirely different media landscape, you'd have an entirely different national mood. It'd be profoundly different. But that's not the way it is. The media is now just willing accomplices of the Democrat Party, and particularly Barack Obama. So you get a distorted view of life in America as seen by and reported by the vast majority of what's called the mainstream media. We call them the Drive-By Media, the State-Controlled Media. And today is a great example.
No matter where you look, this 8.3% unemployment and all the robust other economic news that isn't happening, is being reported. It's an abject lie, basically, the stories. Here are some sample headlines just from Google: "Unemployment Steady at 8.3%, but Job Market Improving." That's US News & World Report. How can that be? How can unemployment not have gone down, how can there not be any new jobs, but the job market's improving? "Economy Adds More Jobs than Experts Forecast." Some FM radio station. Economy adds more jobs than experts forecast? For those of you just tuning in, the experts in economic matters are always wrong because every week, every month, whatever the reporting period, the experts are always surprised. The experts are always shocked.
"Hiring Up, Unemployment Steady, Economists Upbeat," Christian Broadcast Network, CBN. "US Adds 227,000 Jobs in February, Orange County Register." If we added 227,000 jobs, why did the unemployment rate stay at 8.3%? Well, if you want to return unemployment to 6%, which it was roughly the year prior to Obama being immaculated, you're gonna need 600,000 new jobs a month for years, to be created. That's the point. There's a new normal here that's been defined, and this is it. Eight-point-one, 8.3 percent unemployment, that's the new normal. That's why we're celebrating. The new normal has to be defined in such a way by the media so that it is not in any way detrimental to Obama. You know, we're down here from nine-and-a-half, 9.9, 9.3%, so that's how this looks good, new normal.
Just remember, folks, in 2005, 2006, unemployment in this country was at 5% under the hated, despised, and dreaded George W. Bush. "Job Growth Remains Brisk in February." "Healthcare Continues to Lead Employment Growth," TheHill.com. "Employment Grows Solidly for Third Straight Month." So the new normal is more than twice as high as unacceptable unemployment under Bush. The new normal, what the media says is a roaring economy; what the media says is a steady economic upbeat; what the media says is job market improving; what the media says is brisk job growth. Eight-point-three percent unemployment is more than twice as high as what was unacceptable unemployment during George W. Bush.
So, the Politico story, the headline: "Obama’s New Hurdle: Jobs Report Optimism -- President Barack Obama has a new challenge with the jobs report due out Friday: rising expectations." Oh, the poor guy. What a real challenge. "Several months of improving numbers filtered through an election-year prism have bolstered Obama’s standing -- but also have fueled anticipation that the employment outlook will continue to improve. If new jobs aren’t added at the same rate, Obama’s political opponents will attack him for not doing enough to sustain the economy." This is the Politico writing for a third grade anti-bullying class. Obama's political opponents will attack him for not doing enough. "If they go up, he’ll almost certainly be slammed for the economy not improving enough. And if they tick down -- or the unemployment rate rises -- expect searing attacks about a president leading the country into a double-dip recession."
Poor Obama. Boohoo! He just can't catch a break. Even the news media talking up the economy for him might backfire on him. Oh, yeah! It's so fraught with danger out there for Obama. Why, even if his sycophant, slavish media talk up the economy, that might backfire. Remember how the media fretted about all the problems of perception that President Bush faced? Right. We don't, either. So obviously this piece in The Politico from which I was just reading was written before this morning's unemployment report came out, and it is clear that the news media and the rest of the Obama campaign were sweating bullets over this number.
You remember how the media fretted about all the problems of perception that Bush faced? Poor Obama! He can't catch a break. These venal Republicans, they're just waiting to pounce on any uptick in the jobless rate! Those bullies. You notice that everything Republicans do is venal? Everything is calculated for political advantage? Everything is done to try to harm our little boy president, Barack Obama? The Republicans never have the country's interests at heart like Obama does. In fact, this article sounds like the Obama campaign was using The Politico to tell their lickspittle minions in the news media to dial back their boosterism a little bit.
It sounds to me like this whole story is the White House calling Politico saying, "Hey, dial it back. We don't want to make it sound too good out there! I mean, there are gonna couple of dips between now and Election Day. It can't be that because we got this poll from Greenberg, don't forget." Stanley Greenberg, James Carville's partner, big-time Democrat pollster, last couple of weeks puts a pull out and says: Mr. President, don't go to town on this big story of a reviving, roaring-back economy because it isn't going to work. They're not feeling it. The reason a story based on a virtual economic recovery won't work is because people are living in the economy.
And they don't have jobs, and the jobs they're getting are not career jobs. A lot of the jobs that were added in this report are people taking second jobs. Our old buddy, the old reliable James Pethokoukis, is occasionally published at Reuters (we'll forgive him for that) and is also a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. He says if we're gonna compare, let's compare apples to apples. "If the size of the U.S. labor force as a share of the total population was the same as it was when Barack Obama took office ... the U-3 unemployment rate would be 10.8%" not 8.3%. What does that mean? What is the labor force participation rate?
Every time I try to explain this, I am met with people who tell me I'm wrong and don't know what I'm talking about and that it's irrelevant, but Mr. Pethokoukis continues to report it. The labor force participation rate is essentially the entire universe of jobs available in the country, and there are over two million less jobs, two million fewer jobs. They just don't exist anymore. Whereas there used to be an ABC Window Washer outfit, for example, when Obama was immaculated in 2009, the place has shut down. So the ABC Window Washer jobs are gone. That is why people talk about creating new jobs. If we need to create new jobs and we need new jobs, it means there are fewer jobs to fill. So if same time number of jobs existed...
If all the ABC Window Washer outfits had been closed down, if they were still open, and those jobs were still available, based on current numbers the actual unemployment rate would be 10.8% not 8.3%. So the universe of available jobs matters. There is no way you can tell me that the American economy, with two million fewer jobs today than three years ago, is in any way upbeat. You've got the same number of people looking for fewer jobs. That's why the percentage changes. You have the same number of people looking for fewer jobs. It's like musical chairs: Every time the music stops, somebody's left out because there aren't enough chairs. It's the same principle here. So the 8.3% unemployment rate is meaningless. It's bogus because we're not comparing apples to apples. Part of the Obama economic record is that there are two million fewer ABC Window Washer jobs than there were when he was immaculated in 2009.
RUSH: Here's a great illustration of that that I was just discussing, along the lines of what I was just talking about. There was a Reuters report from yesterday: "US Jobless Claims Rise, But Labor Market Healing -- More people applied for unemployment checks, but the labor market is healing." Healing! Do you think you would ever get a definition like that of "healing" with a Republican in the White House? "Jobless Claims Rise; Country Going to Hell," would be the headline if George W. Bush were in the Oval Office. Reuters said, "The number of Americans filing for jobless benefits unexpectedly rose last week," damn it, "but not enough to change perceptions that the labor market was strengthening."
That's how the story opens. This is journalistic malpractice. This is utter irresponsibility. This is what we're up against, folks. It has always been this way. I'm spending a little bit more detail on this stuff that you know left and right for our new audience arrivals this week. This is actually a golden opportunity. The left has driven so many new bodies here that it would be foolish not to take advantage of their arrival. So please indulge me as we go back to the first grade for some of them, and I don't mean that in an insulting way. I mean, first grade for you was 23 years ago. You now are super-duper graduate students here at the Limbaugh Institute for Advanced Conservative Studies.
The first day arrivals are essentially the first grade. "The number of Americans filing for jobless benefits unexpected rose last week but are not enough to change perceptions that the labor market was strengthening." Not one "perception" is cited. We don't know whose perceptions we're talking about here other than the infobabe or the reporter, whoever, who wrote the story with tongue hanging out. (panting) Eager and panting away for Obama's success. I'm gonna tell you: This is so blatantly one sighted, this kind of stuff would make the old Soviet commissars blush.
If our media existed in Russia today, and they reported on Putin this way, Putin would call 'em and say, "Look, you guys, you gotta hit me now and then otherwise nobody is gonna end up believing what you say. "You can't continue with this nonstop love affair with me! You gotta dislike me now and then. You gotta criticize me now and then. This is getting embarrassing." Khrushchev would say that. Even Mikhail Gorbachev would say that. Certainly Putin, certainly KGB. Obama probably says: Ah, keep it up! "The number of Americans filing for jobless benefits unexpectedly rose," which means there were more of them, they went up, "but not enough to change perceptions the labor market's strengthening."
This is their revised story: "Payrolls Up Solidly; Jobless Rate at 8.3% -- Employment grew solidly for a third straight month in February, a sign the economic recovery was broadening and in less need of further monetary stimulus from the Federal Reserve." Oh, thank the Lord! Now, thanks to Reuters, we don't need any more stimulus. We don't need any more federal spending because finally all that Obama spending -- finally! -- worked. It's kicking in a little late, but it's starting to work now. Obama's policies are creating jobs. That's the big lie.
RUSH: Now, the reason I spend time on this is that everything that I'm explaining to you about the media lying and misreporting unemployment news happens in virtually every other story they do. For those of you new to the program, the real purpose of this program is to create the largest number of informed, voting participates in the country, in the arena of ideas. That's how we believe in effecting change here is at the ballot box. And an informed number of people voting equals a mandate when their elections result in victories. That's what this is really all about. There is so much disinformation in the media that I believe there really are a number of Americans who have been led to believe whole lies, untruths.
It's frustrating and it's maddening at the same time 'cause we have a business here that has a constitutional charter, the media. They have, in the eyes of our founders, a key role in maintaining liberty and freedom in this country. They've now become participants in an effort to erode freedom and liberty among individuals and transfer it to government. It's a very hideous thing. And we simply like to illustrate how it works so that when you watch media, read media, you're more equipped and better equipped to be skeptical yourself, to be doubting yourself, find out for yourself. 'Cause most of the time the mainstream media, what you're told is propaganda or a variation of it. It's just part of the agenda orientation of the Democrat Party. It's true, and there's no more complicated way to say it than that.
Another example from the Reuters story on unemployment and the economy. "Hiring Up 'Solidly,' Yet Jobless Rate Still 8.3%." How is that happening? Well, Reuters explains in the story that the unemployment rate held at the three-year low of 8.3% because more people returned to the labor force. Now, isn't that a handy excuse. The labor force doesn't mean that those are people that found jobs. The unemployment rate consists of people who are looking for jobs. There is another unemployment number for people who've looked so long they've given up. This number, 8.3%, the government calls the U3 number. But there is a number that is also reported called the U6. The U3 number is made up simply of people who are receiving unemployment checks who are actively looking for a job and can't find one. The U6 number includes all those people plus those who have exceeded their 99 weeks of unemployment and have given up.
The number that's reported, the 8.3%, does not include the number of people who can't find work after 99 weeks and have given up. However, some of those people do reenter the job market, not with jobs, but by looking for jobs. Remember, you looking for a job, you are counted as being unemployed if you don't have one. Well, what Reuters is saying here, even though a lot of people got hired, you people screwed it up, because you came back from not looking for a job to looking for a job. More people returned to the labor force. So the administration via Reuters is now blaming people for looking for work to explain why unemployment's not going down. And again, it's the same universe of numbers. The labor force participation rate that Pethokoukis talked about earlier, it's all coming into focus now.
So the Reuters explanation: we've got people being hired left and right. Why, there are jobs being created left and right. What's the problem? Why is it staying at 8.3%? Well, because people who previously had given up are now back in the market looking for work, damn it. That means they've gotta be counted, damn it, and that means the unemployment rate stays at 8.3% when it ought to be coming down, damn it. So you people who were out of work and quit looking for jobs now have decided to start looking for jobs, you're the ones who are screwing up Obama's economic report. Because if you would just stay out of work and not come back to the labor force looking for jobs we could get that number down to 8.1%. Now, you don't care about Obama, no, you're so selfish, you have to come back to the labor market, start looking for work, and that's why we can't lower the unemployment number.
I am not making up a word of that. I may be adding, shall we say, verve and color to the way I explain it, but everything I told you is factually true, and Reuters here explains the unemployment rate held to the three-year low because more people returned to the labor force. So that's that. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that there are 12.8 million unemployed persons. When Obama's stimulus bill passed there were 12.5 million unemployment persons. Obama spent over a trillion dollars to lose an additional 0.3 million jobs. That's almost as impressive as awarding $10 million to some outfit to create a 50-dollar light bulb. That story is coming up.
Have you ever noticed the Democrats are always said to be the ones who care about the little guy. The Democrats, the American left, they're the ones that really have the compassion for the poor, for the near poor, for the lower middle class, the downtrodden, the stomped upon, the hungry, the thirsty, the women that can't get contraception at law school. That's who the Democrat Party cares for. Republicans, of course, want them to be poor. They want them to be downtrodden. They want 'em to be hungry. They want 'em to be thirsty. The Republicans want all that. The Democrats love them. The Democrats care for them. Right, so what happens? The Democrats get in gear and come up with a car that's gonna save the planet, but you have to buy it.
The problem is, this party that cares so much about the little guy ends up creating a car that costs $50,000, that nobody wants. So they have to pay you $10,000 in the form of a tax credit to buy it. Or they have decided that the light bulb as invented by Thomas Edison is also destroying the climate, is destroying the planet. We gotta get rid of it! We have to replace it with something called compact fluorescents, which are filled with mercury, which is a hazard in your home if one of them breaks, and those things cost through the roof. Isn't it amazing how all of these wonderful creations and inventions to save the planet and to protect the little guy from big business and big Republicans end up breaking their bank when they have to go out and buy them?
A light bulb for $50? Fifty dollars for a light bulb, to save the planet? Who do you think benefits from that? Even with all the manipulations of the workforce, the regime still has failed to stop the longest streak of eight-plus percent unemployment since the Great Depression. Investor's Business Daily is pointing out today that the United States is "stuck in the longest jobs recession since the Great Depression." Now, measure that against all of this happy, joyous, "Boy, we're roaring back!" stuff that you get in the rest of the media. Investor's Business Daily: America is stuck "in the longest jobs recession since the Great Depression. It's been 49 months since the U.S. hit peak employment in January 2008."
That's a year before Obama was elected.
"The average job recovery time since [Jimmy Carter's in] 1980 is 29 months, not including the current slump. The labor market won't truly return to health until some 10 million positions are created to rehire all those who lost their jobs and to absorb new workers." But as we mentioned yesterday, under Obama the country has lost two million jobs. The labor force participation rate: There are two million fewer jobs in America today than there were when Obama was inaugurated, and the labor market will not "return to health until some 10 million positions are created," and we're going on the opposite direction. We are losing jobs. There is no massive uptick in unemployment. There's no massive downturn in unemployment.
It is all a lie.
It's all a lie.
It's all a carefully crafted story designed to make you think that something that is not happening is.
It's Alice in Wonderland.
It really is journalistic malpractice.
RUSH: In addition, ladies and gentlemen, to the fact that it has been 49 months since the US hit peak unemployment back in January 2008 (that's a year before Obama) and since I told you that, it will take some ten million new jobs being created to rehire all of those who have lost their jobs and to absorb new workers coming out of college, for example. It's massive what we have to do here. To reemploy the people who've lost their jobs and take care of those coming out of school, either high school or college who want work, we're going to have to create some ten million new jobs. We've lost two million jobs since Obama was inaugurated, right?
There is no economic recovery.
There is no economic growth.
There is nothing to write home about.
And, yes, the media knows this because this stuff I just gave you is in the media. It's in a part of the media that the mainstream media ignores and pooh-poohs and doesn't consider legitimate. Like the way they see Fox News, or the way they see this program or any other conservative talk show or anything else that isn't ABC, NBC, CBS, a local newspaper, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the LA Times, USA Today, you name it. In fact, as I've always said: "If you miss the New York Times, no biggie. Read the Washington Post.
"If you miss that, no biggie. Read the LA Times. Miss that, watch CBS. Miss that, watch NBC. Miss that, watch ABC. Miss that, watch CNN. Miss that, watch MSNBC." I mean, it's all same. Same stories, same agenda, same opinions. But you miss this show one day, and you won't find it anywhere else. There are two stark, separate media worlds today: Ours, we think and try and strive for the truth. Although we do have opinions here that we're honest about, and we have cares and interests and outcomes that we like to effect. So do they. They just won't admit that. Anyway, we've lost two million jobs; we need ten million jobs. Investor's Business Daily also points out that the country's gross domestic product hasn't risen 4% or more in any quarter since the first quarter of 2006.
This is 2012.
In six years we have not had economic growth exceed 4%!
The ChiComs' economic growth right now is 9%, for example. There are other countries in the world like India growing much faster. We can't even muster two straight quarters of 4% growth. This is longest such stretch on record going back to 1950. That's how bad it is, and this is why the Democrat pollster, Mr. Greenberg, is trying to warn Obama and the Democrats (summarized), "Don't try to tell people that the economy's roaring back. Don't try to tell them that this recovery is headed on full steam, because they're not living it. It isn't going to work. And Obama's numbers on the economy are appropriately unsatisfied.
We were promised if Congress passed Obama's stimulus package it would keep the unemployment rate under 8%. He told us that. President Obama himself said: Pass this stimulus and we'll keep the unemployment rate under 8%. And yet, after more than three full years in orifice, and spending Allah knows how many trillions of taxpayer dollars, we haven't gotten unemployment any lower than it was the first month he was number of us, 8.3%. And that needs to be tied around I see had neck like a Nobel prize. This is utter, complete, total failure, where we're concerned.