Monday, June 4, 2012

Lower Job Growth, Fewer Factory Orders – ‘Unexpected!’

There are any number of commentators in the blogosphere – at least on the conservative side; the Left typically ignores such things – who have commented on the tendency of the MSM to report each individual story about our dismal economy under Obama as if it is some kind of surprise.  Today’s contribution:
New orders for U.S. factory goods fell in April for the third time in four months as demand slipped for everything from cars and machinery to computers, the latest worrisome sign for the economic recovery.
The Commerce Department said on Monday orders for manufactured goods dropped 0.6 percent during the month.  The government also revised its estimate for new orders in March to show a steeper decline.
Economists had forecast orders rising 0.2 percent in April. 
This is in line with the unexpected (!) news about the faltering job growth:
Employers in the United States added only 69,000 jobs in May, the fewest in a year and not even close to what economists expected. For the first time since last June, the unemployment rate rose, to 8.2 percent from 8.1 percent. . . .
And March and April, already disappointing months for job creation, were not as strong as first thought. The government revised the job-growth totals lower by 11,000 to 143,000 for March and by 38,000 to 77,000 for April. [emphases mine]

Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit fame has kept a running log of the plethora of these stories that fall under the rubric of “Unexpectedly!” – the most common word associated with these reports.  (I don’t care to count them, but there are probably in the range of 150 such stories.)  After almost three and a half years of the present regime, anyone with reasonable expectations should start to believe that the steady drumbeat of dismal economic news should be anything but ‘unexpected’.  I mean, who are these economic experts who still can’t get it right?  They fall into the same group that will say that the economy is getting better; it’s just very (very) slow – we’re not there yet – give us more time.  They are simply incapable of acknowledging that the Obama administration has been incapable of fixing the economy with the same techniques that brought down the Soviet empire.

Harry Truman famously said that if you lined up every economist in the world end to end, they would still point in all directions.  In this case, the favored experts keep pointing in the same direction, but are consistently wrong.

But you can believe that if we had a Republican president under these conditions, these same experts and commentators would be outside the White House with torches and pitchforks.  It falls within the same category that James Taranto created in his ‘Best of the Web’ column in the Wall Street Journal Online, the 'Homeless Rediscovery Watch', based on Mark Helprin’s comment during the election in 2000:
If George W. Bush becomes president, the armies of the homeless, hundreds of thousands strong, will once again be used to illustrate the opposition’s arguments about welfare, the economy, and taxation.
Taranto used this, in his many examples, to demonstrate the stark contrast between the homeless ‘crisis’ in the Bush administration and the almost complete lack of coverage in the Clinton.  The category is currently dormant -- when was the last time you heard about the homeless since Obama came to power?

These last few stories are on the heels of Dan Rather's startling declaration that the MSM is not liberal.  (This is the same Dan Rather of the forged George W Bush National Guard documents.)  He is serious -- that's what makes it so funny.

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