WASHINGTON -- The American jobs machine nearly ground to a halt last month -- further evidence that the economy remains anemic under President Obama's business-bashing, anti-capital investment policies.
After more than a year of excuses, exaggerations and statistical somersaults, the economy that Obama insists is now on the mend produced only 41,000 private sector jobs in May, less than one-fifth as many in April. More than 15 million Americans are unemployed, and millions more have either been forced to work part-time or have dropped out of the labor force entirely.
Even more embarrassing for Obama and his party is the fact that most of the 431,000 jobs created last month were temporary census-taking jobs, the only employment the administration seems able to produce in large numbers.
But this time, no amount of political sleight of hand can hide the fact that Obama's nearly $1 trillion spending stimulus plan has been a colossal failure.
The economy has produced jobs in some sectors, mostly on its own, but not enough to keep pace with the hundreds of thousands of Americans entering the workforce pool each year.
As readers of this column know, I have been writing throughout the year that the jobless rate will remain somewhere between 9 and 10 percent for the rest of 2010. And, under present policies, we are unlikely to get back to a normal unemployment range for several years.
"The economy must add more than 13 million mostly private sector jobs to bring unemployment down to 6 percent by the end of 2013," said University of Maryland economist Peter Morici in a recent analysis.
The administration's jobs report last week was filled with bleak statistics, but "one statistic presents a stark reminder of the challenges that remain: Nearly half of the unemployed -- 45.9 percent -- have been out of work longer than six months, more than at any time since the Labor Department began keeping track in 1948," writes Wall Street Journal economics analyst Sara Murray.
"The effects of long-term unemployment are likely to linger when the overall jobless rate falls toward normal, threatening to create a pool of nearly permanently unemployed workers, a condition once more common in Europe than in the U.S.," she notes.But this has been the goal of Obama's big-spending, government-expanding policies from the beginning: the Europeanization of the United States that offers cradle-to-grave care for everyone by taxing everything that moves, including a new Value Added Tax on every product that liberal Democrats are promoting in Congress.
A blockbuster spending report due out this week from the Heritage Foundation's chief budget analyst, Brian Riedl, "shows spending and deficits continuing to grow at a pace not seen since World War II.
"Washington will spend $30,543 per household in 2010 -- $5,000 per household more than just two years ago. While some of this spending is a temporary result of the recession, President Obama's latest budget would replace this temporary spending with permanent new programs," Riedl reports. "Simply put, all parts of government are growing."
The result is unprecedented debt that, like the debts that engulf many European countries, threaten to bankrupt our economy and undermine global confidence in our ability to pay back over $13 trillion in loans.
The budget deficit will hit $1.5 trillion this year, with future yearly deficits expected to average nearly $1 trillion over the next decade, doubling the national debt and quadrupling interest costs over the next 10 years.
And it isn't just this administration's policies that are undermining the U.S. economy and public confidence in the future. It is also the president's relentless attacks on U.S. corporations and our financial markets, calling for federally imposed limits on their growth, higher taxes on venture capital and lately, even questioning when, in BP's case, such corporations should be forbidden to pay stock dividends to their shareholders.
Other Democrats want to go farther. Bill Clinton's former Labor Secretary, Robert Reich, is demanding that the government seize control of BP, a move the Supreme Court ruled illegal in 1952 when President Truman nationalized the U.S. steel industry.
This is the dangerously radical direction that this administration is taking our country. It has declared war on big business and profits, initiated lawsuits against major corporations, often based on little or no evidence, and is pushing higher corporate taxes of one kind or another at a time when businesses are struggling to survive in a jobless era.
This is an investment-starved economy where venture capital is on strike in the face of Barack Obama's policies to tax it into oblivion. The economy remains anemic because the administration is sucking more money out of the private sector, which has grown weak and undernourished, and stuffed it into government that has grown fat, powerful and arrogant.
That's why few real jobs were created last month, why the jobless rate is still hovering near 10 percent and why Democrats are in for a drubbing in the midterm elections.