Saturday, August 5, 2017

Most of the Jobs Added Were Worthless Jobs but Hoorah ... Really

Toyota’s president, Akio Toyoda, and Mazda’s president, Masamichi Kogai, shake hands after announcing a plan to spend $1.6bn on auto manufacturing in the US. 

Photograph: Eugene Hoshiko/AP

The US economy added 209,000 new jobs in July – the second month in a row of 200,000-plus jobs growth. The unemployment rate fell to 4.3%, a 16-year low.

Economists had forecast the US would add 180,000 jobs in July, in line with the average monthly gain for the last six months.

The latest jobs news will come as a welcome relief for Donald Trump, who was elected on the promise of rebuilding the US jobs market.

The Guardian:  US jobs report: Trump given good news as economy adds 209,000 jobs in July

That's the view of it for the hoi polloi and here's what really happened.

However, the jobs report showed once again that the majority of gains were in low-paying service industries. Jobs in food services and drinking establishments rose by 53,000 in July. The industry has added 313,000 jobs over the year. Healthcare employment increased by 39,000. Job growth in higher-paid sectors including construction, manufacturing and mining was marginal.

Wage growth has remained lackluster since the recovery from the last recession and was a mediocre 2.5% higher in July this year compared to July 2016.

“Overall, this morning’s report shows the recovery continues, but with wage growth below target levels, it is abundantly clear that we have a ways to go before we reach genuine full employment – where workers including young and old, and workers of all races can fully benefit from the economy,” wrote Economics Policy Institute senior economist Elise Gould.

- Guardian

It's just another example of the Crusade by Rich White Men to drain every possible dime from America while turning its people into hopeless wage slaves mired for life in debt for consumer crap which wasn't worth a damn in the first place and which further benefits the RWM with the interest they collect up until the worker goes bankrupt or dies.

All the while worker salaries have remained stagnant and risen hardly at all, corporate executive compensation has increased at an astounding rate.  However, the worker with a family with two kids who holds one of those jobs is right on the poverty line in America.

The consequence of the so-called boon to America is those in poverty who take one of these jobs ... will still be in fucking poverty and the only survival move beyond that is taking a second job.

This has nothing much to do with Trump since there's no-one in Washington who has done anything for the workers in any recent time and Hillary Clinton was forthright in repressing any increase to the minimum wage.  There's a peanut gallery screaming get rid of Trump and everything will be fine but there's no reason to believe that when the other Presidents did nothing either.  They have all been Rich White Men, even the ones who weren't.


Cadillac Man said...

Obama inherited the bottom of the worst economy since the Great Depression when he took office in 2009. The unemployement rate reached 10% in October 2009, He could not be blamed for the Great Recession anymore than Trump can take credit for the jobless rate of 4.3% currently. The fact that we are reaching or have reached full employment is an accomplishment that definitely goes to the Obama administration.

As you point out, Obama failed to lift the working poor out of poverty. The minimum wage was increased several times under the Bush administration and stood at $7.25 in 2009. That is exactly where it stands today. Obama did call for legislation to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 in 2014. Congressional Democrats were unable to get the legislation passed. The fact that these workers were left behind is one reason why Trump appealed to them.

There has been improvement in providing workers a higher standard of living in the USA over the last several decades. Currently 29 states have higher minimum wages than the Federal. Statistics show in 1979 the percentage of minimum wage workers was 13.4%. In 2012 the number was 4.7% and as of 2014 the number was 4.3% (Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014).

Still this leaves about 3.3 million working for poverty wages. There has been little talk about increasing the minimum wage since Trump took office. This is a measure he could certainly take credit. It is time to at least adjust for the 8 years of inflation (2%/yrX8=16% or about $8.35). Yes, that is far from the $15 some cities have already enacted in some high wage areas like Seattle. However, that amount is at least a start in assisting those who voted for Trump. Politically, this is a reasonable amount that should have a good chance of passing.
States and cities can and should continue to dictate higher amounts.

So while there has been improvement, as you indicate there is still a long way to go in providing at least a minimum wage that is a livable wage for all working Americans.

Peas InOurThyme said...

All the while we see the pie chart in which the budget for the military in 2015 was 54% and shows every indication yet more. The chance of the worker ever again getting an even break in America doesn't look particularly good. The parties stopped having any interest when they have different party balloons but the same military budgets and I still don't hear anyone saying something needs to be done about it. The military crucifies the country and the people only want selfies while they do it.