Ed Driscoll

Break Out The Stone Temple Pilots Records

As Don Surber writes, “Dude, here’s our recession.”

Unemployment hits historically high levels not seen in years–but perhaps not as many years as the Associated Press wishes.

As Ed Morrissey wrote yesterday:

Employers shed over a half-million jobs in December as the year ended in the grips of a full-blown recession. The total job loss for 2008 went over 2.6 million, mostly in the latter half of the year, as prospects for growth look dim indeed. Even with all of that truly bad news, the AP manages to add a little hyperbole:

The U.S. unemployment rate bolted to 7.2 percent in December, the highest since early 1993, as nervous employers slashed 524,000 jobs.

The Labor Department’s report, released Friday, underscored the terrible toll the deepening recession is having on workers and companies, and highlights the hard task President-elect Barack Obama faces in resuscitating the flat-lined economy.

For all of 2008, the economy lost a net total of 2.6 million jobs. That was the most since 1945, when nearly 2.8 million jobs were lost. Although the number of jobs in the U.S. has more than tripled since then, losses of this magnitude are still being painfully felt.

Uh, okay, thanks for the no-context context. Job losses in 1945 were catastrophic for a nation of 132 million people. We have over 300 million today, and we have increased the workforce by a much larger factor as women have entered the workplace. Total employment in December 1945 was 39.111 million Americans. Total employment in December 2008 was 138.078 million Americans.

In other words, break out your Stone Temple Pilots, Coverdale-Page, and Pearl Jam CDs and drink in deeply the vibe of 1993.

But give incoming President Obama a few years, and Artie Shaw will safely be back in vogue.

(Via Maggie’s Farm.)