Today’s disappointing jobs report reflected that job growth is showing little forward momentum. A total of 80,000 jobs were added last month, and the unemployment rate still lingers at 8.2 percent. With this standstill at the heart of his most recent article, Daily Beast reporter Zachary Karabell suggests that this stasis has become the new normal.
The basic takeaway here (and everyone wants a takeaway) is that we have a structural change that has left nearly 6 million people unemployed for more than six months and some multiple of that so permanently unemployed that they have dropped out of the workforce. Absent massive infrastructure spending, we also have a slower-growth, mature economy with a broken government. In short, this is our new normal; expect that to change only after many years, not months.
Although the recent jobs numbers are unlikely to have an effect on poll numbers, the Romney camp will no doubt use them as fodder to bring into question the president’s leadership during the recovery. But since it is the third bad jobs report in a row, as The Washington Post reports, it “could confirm that the economy is in bad shape and soften hopes for a recovery.”
But tonight we’re not wallowing in pity. We’re not pointing fingers and wasting time. Tonight we’re heading straight to the drawing board and talking about solutions. We know the numbers have stalled — so what needs to happen to turn them around? Chrystia Freeland, editor for Thomson Reuters, and Mark Zandi, chief economist for Moody’s Analytics, who has advised high-profile politicians on both sides of the aisle, including Senator John McCain, will join Jennifer Granholm in “The War Room” to hammer out what needs to happen to get the economy back on track and get jobs for the unemployed.