Think things are bad out there, based on the 9.5 percent unemployment rate? They’re even worse if you look at the “civilian employment-population ratio,” which measures how many working-age Americans have a job whether or not they are seeking one. “When the economy was at its Bush-era height, in 2007, a little over 63 percent of adult Americans had jobs. Friday’s report shows that only about 58.4 percent do, a decline of nearly five percentage points,” wrote Henry Olsen, vice president at the American Enterprise Institute, in the Wall Street Journal.
“There is only one instance since World War II of the U.S economy increasing the employment-population ratio by five percentage points in a decade: the recovery that followed Ronald Reagan’s tax cuts in 1983,” he wrote.
The moral of this story for the Obama White House? “An administration that pursued job creation — not ideology — would note this history and see how individuals and companies can create wealth and jobs quickly if they have the right incentives. Instead, we have policies that are uncertain and portend higher taxes and greater regulatory burdens.”
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