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Fact-checking manufacturing jobs

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Re: Fact-checking manufacturing jobs

Postby Sandi » Sun Sep 30, 2012 7:28 pm

Well, again, the turnaround has already begun. We've gained manufacturing jobs in 27 of the past 31 months. This nearly three-year increase in manufacturing is by far the biggest expansion of US manufacturing in at least the past two decades (I haven't looked back further).


Just curious. Why do you only count the last 31 months? Could it be because if you count ALL of the current administration months you remove the largest decline from 2009 to 2010? The recession bottomed out at that point. Always looks good if you count the good but not the bad.

Sort of like Selling something for $20 that you paid $10 a year for the last 10 years, then calling it a $10 increase.

While you look further back, also check how many months gained manufacturing jobs out of the last 40 months or so.
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Re: Fact-checking manufacturing jobs

Postby jonnygothispen » Sun Sep 30, 2012 7:39 pm

Sandi wrote:
Just curious. Why do you only count the last 31 months? Could it be because if you count ALL of the current administration months you remove the largest decline from 2009 to 2010? The recession bottomed out at that point. Always looks good if you count the good but not the bad.

Sort of like Selling something for $20 that you paid $10 a year for the last 10 years, then calling it a $10 increase.

While you look further back, also check how many months gained manufacturing jobs out of the last 40 months or so.
I'm curious too, Sandi. Why do you think it's easy to turn around the worst recession America has ever had with a congress that says it's primary focus is removing the President, America be dammed? Further, what do you think caused the recession? I anticipate your well researched response! Thanks!
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Re: Fact-checking manufacturing jobs

Postby bdog » Sun Sep 30, 2012 9:49 pm

Kurt in layman's terms, what jobs are available in this "advanced manufacturing"? What does it take to get them? Which party is best advancing these jobs?

You seem to "get" my first comment - the GM jobs that generations have depended on in Janesville are gone gone gone.

It doesn't make any sense for Obama or Paul Ryan to defend these jobs. Well, it only makes political sense, not practical sense.
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Re: Fact-checking manufacturing jobs

Postby Sandi » Sun Sep 30, 2012 10:32 pm

I'm curious too, Sandi. Why do you think it's easy to turn around the worst recession America has ever had with a congress that says it's primary focus is removing the President, America be dammed? Further, what do you think caused the recession? I anticipate your well researched response! Thanks!


No research needed.

I don't think it is easy, no matter who is president. However that has nothing to do with my response.

Nor does the fact that Bush caused the recession. He did. Which also has nothing to do with my response.

In fact you completely avoided my post, which was why only 27 months, the ones after the recession bottomed out. It is like I can claim I am $100 ahead for the day if I spend $400 in the morning, but then earn $100 in the afternoon. It is the same with the mfg jobs.
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Re: Fact-checking manufacturing jobs

Postby pjbogart » Sun Sep 30, 2012 10:38 pm

jonnygothispen wrote:
Sandi wrote:
Just curious. Why do you only count the last 31 months? Could it be because if you count ALL of the current administration months you remove the largest decline from 2009 to 2010? The recession bottomed out at that point. Always looks good if you count the good but not the bad.

Sort of like Selling something for $20 that you paid $10 a year for the last 10 years, then calling it a $10 increase.

While you look further back, also check how many months gained manufacturing jobs out of the last 40 months or so.
I'm curious too, Sandi. Why do you think it's easy to turn around the worst recession America has ever had with a congress that says it's primary focus is removing the President, America be dammed? Further, what do you think caused the recession? I anticipate your well researched response! Thanks!


I always find this short-sighted analysis humorous. It's like blaming a closing pitcher for not winning the game when your team was down 6 runs in the 8th inning. Or the backup quarterback takes over when your team is losing 28-7 in the fourth quarter.

How come you didn't win? You must really suck, because if you didn't suck then we would have won.

And, as Johnny points out, it's not a one-man team. How is it that the economy is Obama's fault when Congress is responsible for writing the budget? According to my trusty pocket Constitution, Presidents EXECUTE the laws that the legislative branch enacts. The Tea Party took over the House of Representatives in 2010. How come they haven't fixed anything yet?
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Re: Fact-checking manufacturing jobs

Postby Sandi » Sun Sep 30, 2012 11:49 pm

How is it that the economy is Obama's fault when Congress is responsible for writing the budget?


I didn't say it was Obama's fault, and without looking, don't think I mentioned his name. Agreed that Congress, and only Congress can spend money. The president can't spend a nickel.

My point, and only point, is the discrepancy in manufacturing jobs gained. I presently have no other disagreements.
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Re: Fact-checking manufacturing jobs

Postby jonnygothispen » Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:29 am

Sandi wrote:
No research needed.

I don't think it is easy, no matter who is president. However that has nothing to do with my response.

Nor does the fact that Bush caused the recession. He did. Which also has nothing to do with my response.

In fact you completely avoided my post, which was why only 27 months, the ones after the recession bottomed out. It is like I can claim I am $100 ahead for the day if I spend $400 in the morning, but then earn $100 in the afternoon. It is the same with the mfg jobs.
well, Kurt does talk a lot about the job losses before it was turned around- in the context of the recession that caused the job losses. I understand what you mean. We still end up with less manufacturing jobs. But in this day and age of constant outsourcing to 3rd world countries, a turnaround like this, which hasn't happened in the last 33 years, is kind of amazing really. So yeah, everything you asked about was addressed, just not at the angle you'd rather see.

According to the BLS we lost 5.7 million manufacturing jobs from 2000 through 2010.
2000..... 17,262,000
2010..... 11,524,000
2012..... 11,970,000

2000 to 2010, 2nd page from the top: http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/2012/01/art4full.pdf

2012 by month: http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.t17.htm

here's a nice BLS chart for manufacturing, from 1975 to 2010, 2nd page down again: http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/2011/04/art5full.pdf
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Re: Fact-checking manufacturing jobs

Postby kurt_w » Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:01 am

Sandi wrote:Just curious. Why do you only count the last 31 months? Could it be because if you count ALL of the current administration months you remove the largest decline from 2009 to 2010? The recession bottomed out at that point. Always looks good if you count the good but not the bad.

Go back and re-read my comment, please. I specifically pointed out that there was a steep decline in manufacturing jobs during the first few months of 2009, which then bottomed out and began rising again at the start of 2010. I also pointed out that if you just want to "count" the jobs lost and jobs added, there's been a net loss of 0.6 million manufacturing jobs since January 2009.

So, overall, Obama's record on manufacturing jobs is slightly worse than Clinton's first term, but much better than either of Bush's two terms.

That, however, was not the point of the thread. I specifically wanted to look at whether the claim in Obama's campaign ad (1 million new manufacturing jobs over the next four years) was reasonable. The simplest way to evaluate something like that is to look at recent trends and project them forward. In this case, the recent trend (over the past 31 months) is a gain of about 0.214 million manufacturing jobs per year. If you assume that this trend will continue unchanged, you would project about 0.85 million additional manufacturing jobs by 2016.

So the claim in Obama's campaign ad would seem to assume that the economy will do slightly better over the next four years than over the past three, but not wildly better.

That is all.

I think you can probably figure out why it makes sense to base a projection for the next few years on the trend from 2010-2012 instead of basing it on the trend from 2008-2009. It has something to do with temporal autocorrelation.
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Re: Fact-checking manufacturing jobs

Postby Galoot » Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:14 am

A lot of people on the right seem to have a problem with the idea of a "rate", and particularly with the sign of the rate. Both are fairly simple concepts taught in Algebra I, but they seem to be too complicated in many cases. This case is one excellent example--the RATE of manufacturing job growth since 2010 is one of the best rates achieved in decades, and the sign of it is in our favor.

Global warming is the other area where those on the right have this problem--while it may be true that the Earth has been warmer in the past, the current rate of change is the huge issue.
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Re: Fact-checking manufacturing jobs

Postby kurt_w » Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:40 am

Galoot wrote:This case is one excellent example--the RATE of manufacturing job growth since 2010 is one of the best rates achieved in decades, and the sign of it is in our favor.


Yeah, but to be fair, part of that is the (natural) bounce back from the 2007-2008 collapse. That is to say, we temporarily overshot (on the down-side) the number of manufacturing jobs the country is able to support. Once the immediate crisis was over, those jobs started coming back.

There are countries that have managed to do very well at retaining manufacturing -- Germany, obviously, is the ultimate example. That's not to say that the US can or should try to mimic what Germany has done on manufacturing, but it does show what's possible.
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