Archive for economic recovery

Helping the Homeless in Los Angeles Is an Under-discussed/funded Issue

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NRCC

Despite its status as one of the country's largest urban areas, the plight of the homeless in Los Angeles is a vastly under-discussed and under-addressed issue.

It was heartening to see Josè Díez-Balart, newly in the MSNBC morning lineup from 10-11 a.m. EST, host advocate Dr. Sophia Momand to get to the heart of the matter.

Her religious credo as a Muslim included a highly unusual promise she made when she became a doctor -- a very personal and unique oath to give care to all in her path, and give harm to none by choice.

A little further research on Dr. Momand proved edifying. From Southern California Public Radio, a bit more on that particular oath she swore more than twenty years ago. When homelessnessness was an equally large and looming plight.

Momand says she became a doctor because she enjoys helping people, "but it’s also part of my faith. I happen to be a Muslim, and part of our religion is that you have to be active helping humanity. For me it’s pretty easy, so it’s not like I’m giving up a whole lot of time, but whatever little I can help has really made a difference in their lives."

morons 3

So we have been hearing a deal from the popular Jesuit hippie Pope about caring for the poor, the homeless, the sick ... now Muslims are stepping up. Who is it that lags behind ... again?

Oh rihhght right right, the Religious Right.

The 'Turn Back Time' crowd.

They that listen to La Palin and worship at the feet of hate-mongorers extraordinaire Hannity and Limbaugh ... the station of Fvx Nation.

Apparently less free with their charity than other organized religious bodies of work.

don'tMakeMe

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Upbeat economic news round-up. Yes, upbeat. #BlameObama

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Moment of Happy, upbeat

Every morning I hold my Los Angeles Times newspaper (key word: paper) in my hands and read it cover to cover. By the time I'm done, I usually need a Valium, a six-pack of wine, and some Pepto Bismol. But today's Business section actually cheered me up! I only ended up requiring an IV of wine due to the horrific front page headlines about Israel and the Malaysia crash. It wasn't too hard to resist the Pepe Le Pew-like enticement of Le Valium, and I loaned the Pepto to the neighbor down the street with the very teenagey teen. Why? Because the economic news was actually upbeat.

You read that right.

upbeat

Don't believe me? I don't blame you. Usually economic news makes us want to haul out our old GW Bush dartboards and start throwing.

blame obama Bush's fault smaller

But here's proof:

  • Stocks buoyed by strong earnings (no link to that either, but that title with the accompanying article is in my paper, honest)

Yes, things could be better. But seeing all the positive headlines was encouraging.

Of course, this is clearly some commie fascist Marxist socialist plot by President Obama, who we all know controls every news organization except Fox, which doesn't report news at all. So you'll have to read the reports and draw your own conclusions. But IMHO, this can serve as today's Moment of Happy.

I retort, you deride.

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Bikini Graph time! "No point in cherry picking because all the jobs news is good." #BlameObama

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bikini itsy bitsy bikini graph job creationgraph unemployment June 2014

Before we get to the jobs news o' the day, how's about a little upbeat update from everyone's favorite news source, the always reliable Fox Biz, hmm? Via an email alert:

The blue-chip average broke past the 17000 mark for the first time in history as traders cheered a strong jobs report. The Dow is up 58 points, or 0.35%, to 17035.

And this happened on whose watch again? Oh yeah.

President Obama is the worst. Socialist. Ever.

Now on to Ye Olde Bikinie Graphe, because, yes, once again, it’s job creation time! Which means it's time to bring back the really-not-so-old Bikini Graph! This time around, the conclusion is that "few expected the data to be this good." That sound you hear is the protesteth too mucheth from the moutheths of the GOPeth:

bikini graph private sector July 2014

bikini graph overall July 2014

As always, red columns point to monthly job totals under the Bush administration, while blue columns point to job totals under the Obama administration.

Via Steve Benen at The Maddow Blog, more on the new report from Bureau of Labor Statistics, including how we added 288,000 jobs in June, "well ahead of forecasts." The unemployment rate is now at 6,1%, which is the lowest it's been since September 2008. That's six-- count 'em, six-- years ago. Last fall, it was a full point higher. At one point, we were at 10% (thank you, BushCo).

Benen even manages to squeeze in some excellent Benghazi!!!! snarkitude:

For the fifth consecutive month, public-sector layoffs did not drag down the overall employment figures. Though jobs reports over the last few years have shown monthly government job losses, in June, the private sector added 262,000 while the public sector added 26,000. The latter may not sound like much, but after several years in which that total was negative, it’s heartening. [...]

Overall, the report suggests the jobs landscape is clearly improving, which is no doubt proof that American employers are in on the conspiracy to distract Americans from Benghazi.

All told, over the last 12 months, the U.S. economy has added over 2.49 million jobs overall and 2.43 million in the private sector. What’s more, June was the 52nd consecutive month in which we’ve seen private-sector job growth – the longest on record.

At this point, with the year about half over, 2014 is currently on track to be the best year for U.S. job creation since 1999.

Benen is also reporting that this is "actual" good news, because "job creation was strong, even as the labor force grew. This is, in other words, how people rooting for the economy want to see the jobless rate drop."

But my favorite part was this: "There’s no point in cherry picking because all of the news is good."

Say it with me now:

blame obama Bush's fault smaller

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Bikini Graph time! Total payrolls surpass where they were before Bush recession #BlameObama

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Graph unemployment rate June 2014

Once again, it’s job creation time, which means it's time to bring back the Bikini Graph! This time around, the conclusion is that the economy is "plodding along steadily." Per an email alert from everyone's favorite, most trustworthy news source ever, the Labor Department said the economy has now recovered all 8.7 million jobs lost during the Bush recession.

bikini graph overall June 2014

bikini graph private sector June 2014

As always, red columns point to monthly job totals under the Bush administration, while blue columns point to job totals under the Obama administration. Via Steve Benen, more on the new report from Bureau of Labor Statistics:

[T]he U.S. economy added 217,000 jobs in May, which is almost exactly what economists expected. The overall unemployment rate, meanwhile, remained at 6.3% – still at its lowest point since September 2008, nearly six years ago.

For the fourth consecutive month, public-sector layoffs did not drag down the overall employment figures.  [...]

All told, over the last 12 months, the U.S. economy has added over 2.38 million jobs overall and 2.36 million in the private sector. What’s more, May was the 51st consecutive month in which we’ve seen private-sector job growth. The year isn’t quite half over, but 2014 is currently on track to be the best year for U.S. job creation since 1999... now tied for the longest streak on record, matching a streak from Clinton’s second term.

You know what to do, right? Say it with me: When in doubt, blame Obama.

blame obama Bush's fault smaller

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Paul Ryan ducks protesters at Wisconsin fundraiser

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Paul Ryan ugh this guy

When Rep. Paul Ryan arrived at a fundraiser for 21st Congressional District candidate Elise M. Stefanik the other day, he was met by protesters. Maybe that's because his Kill Medicare budget was another ill-considered attempt at forcing austerity on the rest of us. Austerity has not worked. See: Fail, GOP.

Budget cuts have made a speedy economic recovery impossible. In fact, budget cuts have created a nation of poorer poor, hungrier hungry, and sicker sick. And don't get me started on what's happened to our public schools, something I know about first hand after working in them for well over a decade.

So here's what happened when Paul Ryan got to the campaign event, according to the Waterstown Daily Times:

Protesters marching on Washington Street and asking motorists to honk their horns claim the budget proposal cuts too many public benefits, including Medicare and Social Security.

Stefanik was was his director of debate prep during the 2012 elections. Maybe she should have taught Paul Ryan how to debate with himself about attending a fundraiser for his former coach. And how to face protesters who deserve to be acknowledged. Instead, the coward did decide to show up, where, per the Waterstown Daily Times video, this happened:

paul ryan ducks press at Wisconsin fundraiser

There you go, GOP, he's all yours, the guy who ducks the press and voters who disagree with him. A born leader.

Paul Ryan cowardly lion

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"Think what Ballmer's play money could do to help farmers and their children."

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it's all about the money 2

Let's talk money. Few people have enough. A very, very few are sitting on craploads of money, *coughKOCHS, ADELSONcough* but most of us aren't.

GOP Congress members block any Democratic bill that aims to rectify that. *coughMINIMUMWAGEcough* Without wage hikes, the "have-nots" can't spend money. Without that money going into the economy, our situation remains stagnant. And Americans continue to struggle.

But that's okay with Republicans. That way they can blame it all on the president and use his/the Dems' "failure" as a fundraising ploy to win elections while claiming they could do better. Never mind that they've come up with no plan of their own other than that proven catastrophe called austerity. *coughPAULRYANcough*

Billionaires and corporations continue to hoard their money, while the rest of us agonize over how to stay above water, feed and clothe our kids, and simply make it through another day.

And with that, here are a couple of Los Angeles Times letters to the editor, because our voices matter:

Thank you for Friday's compelling story about agricultural workers in the Central Valley ("Dreams die in drought"). I was moved by the plight of these families struggling to get by, and chagrined at the number of children they bring into the world and the stress that this adds.

If someone ever wondered about the differences between the haves and the have-nots, one need only read this story and the adjacent one about the obscene price Ballmer might pay for the Clippers ("NBA record $2 billion offered for Clippers," May 29) .

The fat cats sit game-side doodling on their cellphones while field laborers eke out an existence, or don't. Just think what Ballmer's play money could do to help these farmers and their children.

I only hope the Mormon missionaries in the moving Column One learn from the example of Jesus to not only feed the poor but also to fight for justice for the least of those among us.

Philip Spradling

Pasadena

***

Economist Brad Schiller cautions that President Obama's proposal to boost the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour would cost hundreds of thousands of jobs. He doesn't mention the multiplier effect of a wage increase. ("A higher minimum wage -- at what cost?," Opinion, May 27)

The multiplier effect is the single most powerful factor in growing an economy. It is to macroeconomics what compounding is to investing.

Schiller mentions the 500,000 jobs that "might" be lost (according to the Congressional Budget Officer report), but he conveniently omits the fact that the CBO also states that the wages of 16.1 million workers would go up. The positive multiplier effect on the 16.1 million workers would more than make up for the negative multiplier effect of the 500,000 who "might" lose their jobs by creating new jobs due to added demand.

In 1992, James Carville famously coined the phrase, "It's the economy, stupid." It's time for an update: "It's the multiplier effect, stupid."

Eric Geisterfer

San Pedro

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Bikini Graph time! "Where are the jobs? They’re right here." #BlameObama

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bikini itsy bitsy bikini graph job creation

That headline up there? I shamelessly stole that-- well, except for the Blame Obama part-- from the Maddow Blog's Steve Benen, because it pretty much rocks.

Let's start with some email alerts I received today about the economy and unemployment numbers. Where are the jobs, indeed.

Via everybody's favorite source of the most accurate news reporting anywhere ever (tongue firmly implanted in cheek), Fox (Fox Business to be exact):

Unemployment in April fell to 6.3 percent, from 6.7 percent, as the economy added 288,000 new jobs.

The U.S. economy added 288,000 jobs in April, surging past the 210,000 jobs Wall Street expected, marking the biggest increase since January 2012. The jobless rate fell by 0.4 percentage point to 6.3%, its lowest level since September 2008. The labor force participation rate fell to 62.8% from 63.2% in March.

Where are the jobs?

peekaboo baby

Peek-a-boo! Here they are!

So once again, it’s job creation time, which means it's time to bring back the Bikini Graph!

bikini graph private sector April 2014

bikini graph April 2014 overall

As always, red columns point to monthly job totals under the Bush administration, while blue columns point to job totals under the Obama administration. Via Steve Benen, more on the new report from Bureau of Labor Statistics:

For the third consecutive month, public-sector layoffs did not drag down the overall employment figures. Though jobs reports over the last few years have shown monthly government job losses, in April, the private sector added 273,000 while the public sector added 15,000. The latter may not sound like much, but when you get used to that total being negative, it’s a breath of fresh air.

These are, of course, preliminary numbers that will be revised, but at this point, April appears to be one of the best months for the U.S. job market since before the Great Recession began. [...]

All told, over the last 12 months, the U.S. economy has added over 2.36 million jobs overall and 2.37 million in the private sector. What’s more, April was the 50th consecutive month in which we’ve seen private-sector job growth.

blame obama Bush's fault smaller

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