Politics & Policy

Almost 5 Million Serving

The U.S. is approaching a jobs milestone — but will anybody know?

By Jerry Bowyer

Let’s call it Bowyer’s Law: The emphasis that the mainstream media give to unemployment while a Republican is in the White House is directly proportional to the rate of unemployment. In other words, if the unemployment rate is very low, then coverage of the unemployment rate will be very low too — that is, when someone like George W. Bush is in power. At a current rate of 4.9 percent, Bowyer’s Law seems to be holding.

It’s time for the Bush administration to turn this thing around. We are currently within a hair’s breadth of achieving 5 million new jobs since the president’s tax cuts were fully implemented in May 2003. If we hit it this month, that would mean 5 million jobs in 28 months. When the new jobs numbers are reported four weeks from now, maybe it will be time for the administration to crow a little bit.

Perhaps the reason President Bush has had so much trouble selling his admirable Social Security reform plan is that so many people think his economic performance is weak. But perhaps so many people think this way because the press systemically tells them so, and because the president does not systematically rebut the press.

Here are some suggestions to help turn the tide:

First, 5 million jobs in slightly more than two years is a big deal. Say so, Mr. President.

Second, Mr. President, you should defend the Labor Department’s household survey, which goes almost unreported in the media and includes the all-important self-employed. The president has laid out a vision of a “new ownership society” and it’s working — job growth has been much stronger in the start-up and self-employed segment of the economy. The Labor Department’s establishment (or payroll) survey counts the first group badly and doesn’t track the second group at all. In an ownership society the household survey will be a better gauge of employment than the establishment survey. It’s time for the president to reconcile his economic strategy with his communication strategy by focusing on small business ownership and the survey that tracks it.

Is a boom a boom even if nobody hears it? Let’s leave that question to the theoreticians. Meanwhile, it’s time for the White House to make some noise.

– Jerry Bowyer is the author of The Bush Boom and an economic advisor to Blue Vase Capital Management. He can be reached through www.BowyerMedia.com.

Most Popular

Elections

Weirdo O’Rourke

Friends of the young Bill Clinton and Barack Obama spoke of the special glow of promise they had about them, even back in their early twenties. Angels sat on their shoulders. History gave them a wink and said, “Hey, good lookin’, I’ll be back to pick you up later.” Robert O’Rourke? Not so much. He ... Read More
Education

Our Bankrupt Elite

Every element of the college admissions scandal, a.k.a “Operation Varsity Blues,” is fascinating. There are the players: the Yale dad who, implicated in a securities-fraud case, tipped the feds off to the caper; a shady high-school counselor turned admissions consultant; the 36-year-old Harvard grad who ... Read More
U.S.

McCain at Annapolis

President Trump has been doing a lot of tweeting today -- against TV programs, companies, and other things that have incurred his displeasure. These tweets make for interesting reading. One of them is this: So it was indeed (just proven in court papers) “last in his class” (Annapolis) John McCain that sent ... Read More