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January 07, 2011

Cage Match: Bush vs. Obama Job Creation

People were asking about the libs' favorite job creation meme this year: Did Obama really create more jobs in 2010 than Bush did in his entire 8 years? Well, yes, but it's a stupid statement. Here's the data (all numbers are in thousands):

BushObama
1/31/011/31/09Difference12/31/0912/31/10Difference
Total Jobs132,469133,5491,080129,588130,7121,124
Private Jobs111,634110,961-673107,107108,4531,346

So you can see that the statement is strictly true: Obama did create more private sector jobs and more total jobs in one year than Bush did in 8.

But that doesn't stop this from being an utterly dishonest statement. What they're really saying is that they're going to count both recessions that Bush went through against him, but leave out most of the recession in Obama's term. Here's a fairer comparison, looking at both men's periods of growth:

BushObama
7/31/0312/31/07Difference12/31/0912/31/10Difference
Total Jobs129,864137,9518,087129,588130,7121,124
Private Jobs 108231 1155747,253107,107108,4531,346

...or maybe just comparing their first two years (even though the dot.com recession started during Bush's term, while the recent recession was half-over when Obama took over):

BushObama
1/31/0112/31/02Difference1/31/0912/31/10Difference
Total Jobs132,469 130,183-2,281133,549130,712-2,837
Private Jobs111,634108,595 -3,039 110,961108,453-2,508

Now, I'm not a big fan of Bush's economic policies (except by reference to Obama's), but I think it's pretty clear that the Left's cherry-picking of time periods is ridiculous. Not that comparing two Presidencies with different circumstances isn't ridiculous from the start.

This historical foolery also raised its head during the tax cut brouhaha. Bush's tax cuts, implemented first due to revenue surpluses and then as economic stimulus, are considered to have been irresponsible. But Obama's extension of the tax cuts is considered to be a necessary step in economic recovery. Somehow the pundits have forgotten that Bush had his own recession to deal with, and an enemy actively devoted to the economic downfall of the US.

Selective memory and overtly biased analysis make for an ugly combination.


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posted by Geoff at 04:54 PM

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