News & Politics

Why Do Democrats Want Higher Unemployment?

(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

The New York Times headline on the May jobs report pretty much says it all:

We ran out of words to describe how good the job numbers are

The real question in analyzing the May jobs numbers released Friday is whether there are enough synonyms for “good” in an online thesaurus to describe them adequately.

So, for example, “splendid” and “excellent” fit the bill. Those are the kinds of terms that are appropriate when the United States economy adds 223,000 jobs in a month, despite being nine years into an expansion, and when the unemployment rate falls to 3.8 percent, a new 18-year low..

“Salubrious,” “salutary” and “healthy” work as words to describe the 0.3 percent rise in average hourly earnings, which are up 2.7 percent over the last year — a nice improvement but also not the kind of sharp increase that might lead the Federal Reserve to rethink its cautious path of interest rate increases.

In case you missed it, this is the fricking NEW YORK TIMES! 

OK, so who could argue with that? How about Nancy Pelosi?

Washington Free Beacon:

“May’s jobs report shows that strong employment numbers mean little to the families hit with soaring new costs under the Republicans’ watch,” Pelosi said in a statement.

“Republicans’ cruel, cynical health care sabotage campaign is already spiking families’ premiums by double digits and pushing millions off their coverage, according to the nonpartisan CBO,” she went on. “Big Pharma continues to hoard the benefits of the GOP tax scam, using their handouts to further enrich executives and shareholders instead of lowering prescription drug costs for seniors and sick kids. At the same time, the President’s reckless policies are exploding gas prices, wiping out the few meager gains that some families should have received from the GOP tax scam, as wages remain stagnant.”

The UN is even more of a spoil sport.

The Guardian:

Donald Trump is deliberately forcing millions of Americans into financial ruin, cruelly depriving them of food and other basic protections while lavishing vast riches on the super-wealthy, the United Nations monitor on poverty has warned.

Philip Alston, the UN special rapporteur who acts as a watchdog on extreme poverty around the world, has issued a withering critique of the state of America today. Trump is steering the country towards a “dramatic change of direction” that is rewarding the rich and punishing the poor by blocking access even to the most meager necessities.

“This is a systematic attack on America’s welfare program that is undermining the social safety net for those who can’t cope on their own. Once you start removing any sense of government commitment, you quickly move into cruelty,” Alston told the Guardian.

Millions of Americans already struggling to make ends meet faced “ruination”, he warned. “If food stamps and access to Medicaid are removed, and housing subsidies cut, then the effect on people living on the margins will be drastic.”

Asked to define “ruination”, Alston said: “Severe deprivation of food and almost no access to healthcare.”

I don’t think “deliberately forcing millions of Americans into financial ruin, cruelly depriving them of food and other basic protections” is entirely accurate. In fact, it’s horse hockey. The poorest Americans are not losing healthcare, not losing food stamps, not losing housing assistance, and are certainly not headed for “ruination.” In fact, most people going off food stamps are not “losing them.” They are getting jobs and don’t need them anymore.

There are still generous subsidies for Obamacare premiums that rose by double digits under Obama but somehow failed to attract the attention of the UN.

The UN is the UN and always will be the UN. But it’s Democrats like Pelosi that are a mystery. Sure, she has to say something mean about the jobs numbers — trying to make a sow’s ear out of a silk purse. But one might gather from her statement that she would rather have high unemployment, no wage growth, and no tax cut.

I think Pelosi and the Democrats should fashion a national campaign for midterms based on those memes. In fact, Republicans should beg the Dems to run on that.