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  • Morning Bell: Still Jobless After All These Years

    Yesterday at the White House, President Barack Obama faced the media to once again plug the American Jobs Act–his plan for more stimulus spending, paid for with even more taxes on America’s job creators. And this morning, not a day later, America received a reminder of why a continuation of the President’s tried-and-failed policies is not a prescription for success: In September, the U.S. unemployment rate held steady at a dismal 9.1 percent with 14 million Americans still out of work. About 103,000 jobs were added, but 45,000 of those were simply Verizon strikers returning to work, and the number of long-term unemployed (27 weeks or more) increased by 208,000.

    For those keeping score, the unemployment rate has hovered around 9 percent for all of 2011, was over 9 percent for all of 2010 and most of 2009, and will remain above 8 percent until 2014 according to the Congressional Budget Office (and that’s a generous estimate that didn’t account for the most recent economic slowdown). If you demand more and want to see full employment in America (about 5 percent unemployment), you’ll have to wait until 2018, and that will happen only if employers regain their confidence and begin hiring at 176,000 jobs per month–much higher than the rate seen in September and, for that matter, all year.

    The President, though, does not accept any of the blame for America’s continued stagnation or the economy’s unsteady recovery, even though a staggering 55 percent of Americans disapprove of his job performance. In his press conference yesterday, the President was asked to comment on Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke warning to Congress this week that the economic recovery is “close to faltering.” The President’s answer? Laying the blame as far away from his doorstep as possible, pointing the finger at everything from the tsunami in Japan to the GOP in Congress:

    I think people were much more optimistic at the beginning of this year. But the combination of a Japanese tsunami, the Arab Spring, which drove up gas prices, and most prominently Europe I think has gotten businesses and consumers very nervous. And we did not help here in Washington with the debt ceiling debacle that took place, a bit of game-playing that was completely unnecessary, completely unprecedented in terms of how we dealt with our responsibilities here in Washington.

    And while the President denies any responsibility for America’s sagging economy, he has also attempted to dress up his plan in an imaginary cloak of bipartisanship, claiming, “Every idea that we’ve put forward are ones that traditionally have been supported by Democrats and Republicans alike.” Not so, as even The Washington Post points out.

    A key component of the President’s plan is taxes–and plenty more of them. The President’s proposal would impose $1.5 trillion in permanent tax hikes over 10 years that would fall mostly on families and businesses earning more than $250,000 a year–hardly a proposal that has the backing of conservatives. (Meanwhile in the Senate, Majority Leader Harry Reid [D-NV] has proposed a 5.6 percent tax on earnings above $1 million per year.)

    The President says he’s “asking millionaires and billionaires to pay their fair share,” which by implication means that those Americans aren’t paying enough. But the President’s sense of “fairness” doesn’t take into account the reality that the top 10 percent of income earners already pay 70 percent of federal income taxes. Heritage’s Curtis Dubay explains how those numbers break down:

    According to the IRS, the top 1 percent of income earners–those earning more than $380,000 in 2008–paid more than 38 percent of all federal income taxes while earning 20 percent of all income. The top 10 percent ($114,000 and above) earned 45 percent of income and paid 70 percent of all taxes. At the same time, the bottom 50 percent of income earners–those earning less than $33,000–earned 13 percent of all income and paid less than 3 percent of federal income taxes.

    Now the President wants to pile another tax burden on their heads, and that will lead to fewer jobs for all Americans, including middle- and low-income workers. Those who would pay these new taxes under Obama’s plan include investors who provide capital for businesses to expand, thereby creating more jobs for American workers, as well as entrepreneurs who use capital to start new enterprises. And because many businesses pay their taxes through their owners’ individual income tax returns, the President’s new tax hike will directly target those employers. If the President wants to create more jobs in America, confiscating money from job creators in order to fund more government spending isn’t the way to do it.

    Senator Reid knows that the President’s plan is indefensible and proved it by going out of his way to change the rules of the Senate last night to avoid forcing his caucus to vote on it. Senate Democrats don’t want to be on record supporting the President’s latest stimulus, so now the legislative body is at an unprecedented standstill.

    Americans are suffering. Some are taking their frustrations to the street; others are at home struggling to find new jobs and make ends meet. Fourteen million who would like to work simply can’t do so, and 6.2 million of those jobless Americans have been out of work for 27 weeks or more. But instead of recognizing that bigger government, more spending, and more burdens on America’s job creators simply has not worked, President Obama is continuing his myopic focus on more of the same with none of the blame. That’s not the answer Americans are looking for.

    Quick Hits:

    Posted in Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    46 Responses to Morning Bell: Still Jobless After All These Years

    1. Whicket Williams says:

      Why are gasoline prices so high? tTe price of oil says gas should be 200 a gallon. Why is there no outcry over this? Is the public this stupid? evidently!

    2. Carol M Kite says:

      Every Obama feeble, misinformed attempt at any government function is a failure because he hasn't a clue what he's doing, socialist principles not the way to go as we obseerve what's happening in most every European country.
      The best thing he could do is make it lucrative for off-shore companies to bring manufacturing back to America, make China conform to the rules they impose on us & get rid of the overwhelming regulations/paperwork. Do not impose more crippling taxes on a nation almost broken by so much joblessness, well above the quoted 9% for many! His plan will prevent any chance of economic recovery.

    3. buck says:

      Never , ever , ever , trust a democrat , ANY democrat . No compromises that that render our values and principles impotent . Their idea of bi-partisonship is to give them what they want , like the phoney budget surrender . The house is still giving Obama carte blanche on the chack book . PLEASE STOP THIS INSANITY !!!

      • Cat says:

        Funny, I used to be a republican and I started feeling the same way about them. I don't claim a party now. But the Tea Party debate made me laugh. It would have been nice if they would have answered question instead of bickering with each other. Highschool behaviour at best. I was waiting for someone to start throwing punches. At this time I doubt if I will vote republican any time soon.

        • Bobbie says:

          Funny only those intimidated by America's principles of dignified freedom would misconstrue the efforts of the tea party. We learned our lesson well, regarding the democratic leadership where truth and honesty no longer exists if it ever did and where their followers are misled right into the arms of government dependency. Thanks for the advice, buck. We couldn't agree with you more…

      • Bobbie says:

        we feel the exact same way. almost fell into the pity trap but were able to avoid it. Republicans represent self worth, democrats represent self weakness. Republicans are straight forward with the truth. Democrats don't even admit the truth when the evidence is right in front of their face.

    4. Eric N says:

      I think the conservative rhetoric about tax increases on the rich is correct. However, I'd like to see a figure for payroll taxes included as well, and an acknowledgement that state and local taxes are often significant. The federal income tax is one of the few progressive taxes and most of the others (including sales tax) are regressive. I think many of those who want to tax the rich might change their tune to cutting the scope of government instead if they actually looked at the full scope of taxation. I think that the majority of people in this country would agree that the first $10K (or whatever) of income should be fully exempt from all taxes.

    5. Wayne Grievo says:

      Let's pay everyone in Washington half pay, send them home and let us get on with our lives and business. We know what to do. Just get their noses from under our tents.

    6. Stan says:

      Paying for the Jobs Bill by reducing taxes paid to Social Security is not paying for the Bill. It is taking needed contribution from SS and making that problem even worse.
      Construction jobs for Gov't mostly require union workers – about 7% of the work force yet major contributors to Obama. It is payback, plain and simple.
      Jobs for teachers is also a pay back to the unions. Why should the taxpayers be burdened with 100's or 1000's of teachers on full salary that are not teaching? The schools can't fire bad teachers so the sit in "rubber rooms" doing nothing and being paid by us. Let the unions and school admins. clean this waste up before throwing more money at a failing education system.
      The transparency of this administration is clear – corruption, payback, punish, and cronyism. I do not understand why there are not more calls for investigations and criminal proceedings.

    7. C. Hyatt says:

      The Robin Hood approach is not going to get Obama re-elected. It's a sad fact that president's sometimes take office in tough times. Just imagine if Obama had been president during Pearl Harbor. I suppose he would have said that America was treating overseas unfairly and therefore the attack was justified. This administration is a failure in all respects. The only ones left believing it's going to work are those receiving hand outs or otherwise on the dole. They fear for their jobs and their free ride. This will not win Obama the election.

    8. Jason says:

      Oh well, at least Obama's being consistent.

    9. Curt Krehbiel says:

      "At the same time, the bottom 50 percent of income earners–those earning less than $33,000–earned 13 percent of all income and paid less than 3 percent of federal income taxes."

      And this is the group that I fear will reelect President Obama unless the top 50 percent turn out a mass of conservative voters.

    10. Brian says:

      I am loathe to describe myself as a Republican or Democrat anymore because neither party holds my views…both parties have leaned too far right or left for my liking.

      But referencing the comment "…the top 10 percent of income earners already pay 70 percent of federal income taxes." How does the "right" intend to correct this? For example, if we went to a flat tax of whatever percentage, wouldn't the people with higher incomes still be paying more in federal income taxes? If we went to a national sales tax, the same would apply…those people earning more would be spending more, thusly contributing more dollars in taxes than those earning less.

      About the only way to stop the top 10 percent from paying more dollars would be to levy some sort of a personal tax…every person gets taxed the same dollar amount regardless of what he/she earns. Is this really the type of tax system we want? Because unless that is what Conservatives really want, a statement like the one made doesn't make any sense and does not bolster any argument for maintaining the existing tax rates, or reducing them any further. Any type of system in which percentages are involved would naturally result in those with more, paying more.

      • ThomNJ says:

        Brian, there is nothing wrong with the concept of taxing goods as purchased – if you buy more ,you pay more. That is not inherently unfair, because one chooses to purchase. Your note about a personal tax is nothing I have heard from anyone touting tax reform; so I am not sure where that idea comes from. It is decidedly not a conservative idea. A flat tax would of course have those who earn more pay more, but it is the idea that one can count on a fixed percentage that helps sell this idea. Remember, in our current system, the marginal tax rate goes up appreciably for higher income earners – the government takes a larger share of your earnings as you earn more – and that is the nature of the very unfair progressive tax. Feeling that neither party represents you is the way many of us feel, but I would argue that the Republicans are most certainly NOT leaning right. They are leaning LEFT…just not as far left as the Democrats have decided to do.

    11. Sandy says:

      I was recently in Newport Oregon and saw many help wanted signs…and, I met people who were unemployed. When I told them of the jobs, they would say, I am still on unemployment…I asked a fella who was doing yard work if he was a handiman and he said he was the homeowner. Oh, sorry, I said. I am looking for someone to do some yard work. He told me he knew several people out of work but they were scientists and they didn't do that kind of work. What is honest work in this country? I guess it has become that work where one sits at home and the person who is doing the yard work pays via his taxes for another…
      I am too old for this new world…

    12. Cliff says:

      The facts are hard things to ignore. This video on "Eat the Rich" explains mathematically the debt predicament that we currently face. But even if we liquidated all of American worker's assets to pay off our current year's deficit it would not be enough to handle it for the next year and those to come.

      Watch it for yourself and be afraid. http://youtu.be/661pi6K-8WQ

    13. John Arant says:

      Your missing an important stat. Government jobs are not jobs.

      They should be classified as consumer spending. We earn our money and spend it on government jobs instead of houses and cars.

      Some are beneficial such as public safety, most have little value. A waste of our consumer spending dollar.

    14. Frank says:

      The economy is in a shambles, what shall we do?
      Obama: Tax & spend!

    15. karmon says:

      It continues to amaze me how the President can stand up in front of so many 'so called' intelligent people in the press and just lie to their faces – especially in this era of "gotcha" and "fact check" yet he continues to do so (as do his minions) without a blink in his eye. Consistently lie to the American people without a smirk. What continues to scare me is that ordinary citizens I talk to about these things are so ignorant about our Country's affairs, they believe the lies! Like the lemmings in New York all marching into the river.

    16. Victoria DeLacy says:

      Having been educated to the point of a B.A. at taxpayer expense (funded ENTIRELY through financial aid and scholarships), it is an outrage to me that after having graduated in the top 10% of my college class back in 1999, there was no placement assistance supplied as is stipulated in the DRS paperwork and I have therefore not been able to secure a single full-time permanent job since then, which seems to be to have been a crime since at least $30,000. went into making that education possible on my behalf SUPPOSEDLY in order to make it possible for me to become self-supporting. So far, the discriminatory practices continue to keep the disabled out of work no matter now well trained and talented we may be. I am fluent in Spanish as a second language and have proven fund-raising skills (having been the top individual fund-raiser for Care Net locally during a good many years throughout the nineties). Now that the economy has tanked, I realize that it is even less likely that I would be considered for such a placement but there certainly was absolutely no justification whatsoever for the neglect in supplying placement during that first decade or so after graduation during which the economy had been holding up well. I really hope to see that changed. It is a disgrace that only 3% of the disabled community is self-supporting and only a third of us even work on the part-time basis – what a waste of human potential!

    17. toledofan says:

      This suffering, angst, and humiliation being felt by so many should be considered as a national tradegy and the Administraion, the President and Congress should bare the lions share of it. For the greatest, freeset and most democratic society on the face of the earth to be brought down to the level of a banana republic is just not acceptable. It's too bad we have to wait until the fall of 2012 to right the ship.

    18. vicki says:

      Hey Mr obama – want money for jobs? Why not try this – 1. Pass the fair tax – corporations will flock back to the US and guess what they will have to do when they get here – HIRE PEOPLE. 2. Lift regulations so companies don't go bottom up – guess what? No lay offs / or lost jobs from those companies. 3. Get your union thugs and NLRB out of the way so companies can open plants where they want to and guess what – HIRE PEOPLE. 4. Lastly DRILL BABY DRILL – you're catching on – they will HIRE PEOPLE. When people get HIRED – they what? all together now – p a y t a x e s and stimulate the economy by spending $$$. Now that our little common sense class 101 is now over – any questions?

    19. Bobbie says:

      Anything happening around the world shouldn't give the president of intelligence the excuse to distract him from his job in America. America doesn't like the fundamental transformation that regards the president's bias, discrimination, discontent and his refusal of accountability. The president's policies are ignorant to further his cause of an even greater crisis. Other peoples money is his only answer? If he's a real man, he'll admit it by stepping down. Although he has his pouting pansies parading around the country, more and more of the good of Americans are seeing through his game playing and lies. Stand tough good Americans!

    20. Juan Martinez says:

      It's just amazing. He must have the lowest approval ratings of any president, ever. Why does he hate Job Creators so much? Even Bill Clinton got it right: "it's the economy, stupid".

    21. Curt Krehbiel says:

      "At the same time, the bottom 50 percent of income earners–those earning less than $33,000–earned 13 percent of all income and paid less than 3 percent of federal income taxes." Which suggests that the President will be reelected unless there is a huge voter turnout by the top 50 percent.

    22. joanfrac says:

      I do think Obama "gets it" – His AGENDA is to break the USA so he can implement a socialist/Marxist agenda (see Rules for Radicals). He is constantly picking on someone – Wall Street'ers, The Banks, The Millionaires, Bush, etc etc etc – on and on ad nauseaum (sp?)! This is The Agenda that he was mentored & groomed to implement by many progressives that for some reason hate America –

    23. Job Creator says:

      The top 1% also includes a very large number of individuals who create NO jobs; by lumping them all into this "job creator" bucket you reveal the partisanship — and yes, the CLASS WARFARE — behind your post. The reason those bottom earners don't pay taxes is because they DON'T MAKE ENOUGH MONEY. When are you going to wake up and recognize that the income inequality created by Reagan's ridiculous "trickle down" economics is what's driving the current Wall Street protests, the anger at all legislators (and funny how you don't mention that the Republican-controlled Congress has a much HIGHER disapproval rating than the president), and the increased sense of cynicism about our nation's future. Boo hoo for the millionaires and billionaires — they can and should pay more. You're the one engaging in class warfare; you have been for years, and the people are waking up and recognizing that.

      • Lori says:

        Congress is majority democrats with Harry Reid at the helm. He is the one who is currently trying to block the jobs bill.

    24. Brad - Detroit says:

      OK, anyone here think that the jobs report was a surprise – Raise your hand !

      Crickets.

    25. H Snyder says:

      Could this be more of the "Chicago Way?" Or is it the Socialist way? I don't remember the Russian dictators taking the blame for crop failures or failure to make basic consumer products for their citiizens. Or the Chinese dictators taking the blame for such as The "Great Leap Forward" or the horrific "Cultural Revolution." Or concealing the facts about the Teananmen Massacre.

    26. ThomNJ says:

      Does this man ever NOT lie? There is just so much to pick apart, but I'll use this one: "the Arab Spring, which drove up gas prices"……………hmmm, seems they were about double what they were when you got into office even BEFORE the so-call arab spring. LIAR.

    27. flajim says:

      Mr Brownfield fails to mention that this situation isn't the result of happenstance or incompetence. It is by design. Commander Zero's enablers have directed him to cause this economic downturn by deliberately shackling business with absurd regulations and laws that have left employers in limbo, wondering from which side they'll be hit from next. Since Jan/09, businesses have been hit with new reporting requirements that cost $5 billion to complete and $80 billion to comply — per year.

      Employers are sitting on a lot of money that they'd like to use to expand but are afraid to because of uncertainty of future government mandates. Once a sane administration and Congress is in place, we'll see unimagined growth as the regulatory barriers are torn down. Hopefully, this time, we'll see some housecleaning at some of the most egregious offenders: DOE (both of them), DoJ, EPA, NLRB, and others.

    28. Al Connelly says:

      This is the poorest excuse for a president this country has ever had. He is good at denial and poor with economics and leadership. It appears his end goal is to create a division of the masses in an attempt to "redistribute wealth". He should be brought up on charges for the violations of the constitution. He needs to push for a complete redo of the Tax system and work to make our industry competitive with foreign entities. Offering a one time amnesty at a low penalty to get the billions of $ in corporate money back into the states and remove the loop holes that make it profitable for them to move off shore, curtail the power of NLRB and Unions that can now hold a company captive while milking it dry and stop subsidizing poor investments like Ethanol and non competitive wind mills and solar panels.

    29. Jeanne Stotler says:

      We need to make sure that our children are not ashamed to drive a bus or work in a super market and for that matter at any blue collared job. Not everyone is able to go to college and many shouldn't. Let's go back to having vocational classes in school, put Home Ec back in as well as shop. I have a son who is a carpenter and house painter another who is a rocket scientist, I don't think one is better than another. Let's teach out children to do jobs they enjoy and for them not to be ashamed of doing a good job just because it didn't require a college degree. My daughter didn't go to college, she's a travel agent, I went to college because I WANTED to be a nurse but I've waited tables, driven a school bus, delivered newspapers and worked in a 5&10, and a dept. store as a clerk, I am not ashamed of any of those jobs. BHO lies, just told a whopper about a teacher, then J. Carney lies to cover up, What an administration.

    30. Jann DeVries says:

      Regardless of all this, how many of us who have been out of work too long to receive unemployment any longer are actually counted in this statistic? If we were counted the unemployment rate would be much higher. Where I am, in Michigan there are so many whose hours have been cut, put out of work and being put out of their homes because they can no longer afford their mortgages. It's a sad commentary on the way things are. IF we could find a good job out of state there is no way we could move because the houses in this market aren't selling. We have never tried so hard to find employment and been so poor at the same time, because the jobs that are out there are mostly temporary and low -paying. Never has the employment situation seemed so hopeless.

    31. Jim Patterson says:

      If I had a list of Obama's scape goats, it would not fit in this space. Bankers, big oil, Japan, Europe,and on and on. Oops, nothing is his fault.

    32. JoAnne Duke says:

      I have been looking at the people who are protesting. I would like to know how many of them voted for Obama

    33. lamaclaus says:

      I'm sick of hearing Obama and his sycophants saying they want the rich to pay their "fair share. " What is the fair share for the ~47% of US wage earners who currently pay 0% of federal income taxes? I have no problem for the very lowest wage earners paying nothing in federal income tax. However, even the so-called “poor” should pay something, even if it’s only 2%. There is no way that ~47% of US wage-earners are “poor.” Since voting determines how this country spends its tax dollars, if a person pays absolutely nothing, he or she should not be able to vote which determines how this country spends its tax dollars.

    34. Blair Franconia, NH says:

      Here's my plan for full employment. If we had Federal Service, like the Federation in Robert A. Heinlein's Starship Troopers, we could cut unemployment. Unemployed people can either serve in the military, or other
      jobs.

    35. sandykramer says:

      Two words which one will never hear emanating from Obama: "Mea culpa."

    36. Gene says:

      This article appears to try to mis-lead the reader. It should point out the effective tax rate for each income bracket. However, if the top 10% are making $114K plus and barely making it, then you can imagine how the 50% making $33K feel. They can hardly afford food and shelter, much less clothing. So, I wonder how it feels to be making $380K plus a year and paying whatever in taxes? Where do I sign up?

    37. carol,az says:

      The wacko world of Obama economics translate to class warfare.
      We hear this term utilized all the time which has been reinvented by this administration but is clearly, and purely racism.
      This term is never written about by anyone.
      Racism has been leading America for two years pitting US agaisnt each other.
      Certainly there are jobs for the jobless .
      "The government can't give to anybody anything that the government doesn't frist take from someone else."
      "The someone else_" is the middle classes. The someone else_ is small business, the epic center and lifeblood of free enterprise. The someone else-blocking States Rights,_and the autocratic executive order by fiat.
      You can't divide and conquer your own country_,it's citzens_ our system within_called American exceptionalism and not destroy all values of who we are.
      Certainly by now we all know what the clear and certain danger is_ leading this country. It's being led by class warfare.

    38. Terry Stone says:

      I could do better than this and I don't know much academically about Economics.

    39. Bobbie says:

      Heritage,
      Is the interloper working at Heritage today? the bottom of my screen indicates downloads happening not controlled by me? many comments of no offense, since Steve Jobs blog written by Mr. Faulner and various blogs commented, haven't been posted.

    40. JSNYC says:

      RE: WHAT ALTERNATIVES to ObamaCrat legislative initiatives? I thought Repubs were going to come up with REPEAL AND REPLACE alternative healthcare legislation and a JOBS BILL. Where is it on the internet for we the people to respond to and suggest tweeks? BETTER ALTERNATIVES, ALTERNATIVES, ALTERNATIVES is what we the people want – but don't see them anywhere? Will the hosts of WEEKLY REPUB DEBATES ADDRESS ONE OBAMA-CREATED PROBLEM AT A TIME (after identifying stats), ask candidates for their solutions, and require valid proof of natural born citizenship for each candidate to debate?

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