By Bill Maher
At the end of every January, the people whose job it is to track our jobs numbers go through all the final data and give a revised, more-accurate accounting of the jobs situation for the previous year. Wouldn't it be funny if Republicans spent all of 2012 chanting their campaign refrain, "Where are the jobs?" and then 2012 turned out to be the best growth year since 2005?
Well, that's exactly what's happened. It's almost as if these Republicans are more loyal to their contrived narratives than they are to actual facts.
Federal jobs counters have revised our jobs-created numbers up by 335,000 for 2012. And the month where they found the most previously-uncounted new jobs? November. Obama not only had a good jobs record -- it was getting better by the month! All that, despite having one hand tied behind his back due to Republicans blocking his jobs initiatives and requiring a pillaging of public sector jobs.
Have we gotten back all the jobs that were lost when George W. Bush drove the economy into a ditch? No. The financial meltdown cost our economy about 8.7 million jobs and, since then, we've gotten back about 5.5 million. But, in fairness, there was some damage from Bush that can never be fully repaired. Like our world standing. And New Orleans. And the planet.
Let's look at just how far into a ditch our economy had been driven. As Jonathan Lansner of the Orange County Register points out:
"Please note the scale of recent job losses. Before 2008-09, there were 13 years since 1946 with shrinkage in U.S. jobs. Collectively in those 13 years, a total of 9.76 million jobs were lost. Put that sum into the Great Recession perspective and you see how tough it is to replace 8.67 million jobs lost in only two years. That kind of striking economic perspective isn't found when the economic debate is over minor month-to-month fluctuations. It's much like trying to put a quarterback's career into historical perspective based on a few minutes of one football game."
In other words, this economy didn't just get the wind knocked out of it; it sustained massive trauma with internal bleeding.