The economy only added 36, 000 jobs in January -- and that is terrible.
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The unemployment rate fell to 9.0% because the labor force decreased by 504,000 and the working age population shrunk by 185,000.
Despite all the administration's claims, things are getting worse, not better. Folks are giving up looking, and the country appears to be losing population to emigration. Many workers are resorting to self employment, not because home-based businesses offer great opportunities, but because real jobs simply are not being created.
The private sector is creating very few permanent jobs. After health care and social services, which are mostly government funded, and temporary services are backed out, the private sector gained only 49.000 jobs.
Core jobs outpaced overall jobs growth because even the temp services sector lost jobs. So much for temporary services being the leading edge of a recovery in jobs creation.
Temporary tax cuts, green jobs, waivers from the onerous consequences of the health-care law for unions and other supporters of President Obama, and a hallow reevaluation of onerous regulations don't cut it. It's just like rearranging the chairs on the deck of the Titanic.
Same applies to the veiled failure at changing China's very damaging currency policy and doubling exports. If President Obama won't act against China's currency strategy and stop laying big health care and regulatory burdens on business, the U.S. economy won't create jobs.
President Obama's jobs strategy is a failure.
The economy must add 13 million private sector jobs by the end of 2013 to bring unemployment down to 6%. President Obama's policies are not creating conditions for businesses to hire those 360,000 workers each month, net of layoffs.
At some point the facts will catch up with thinking in the White House, but don't hold your breath.
Peter Morici is a professor at the University of Maryland School of Business and former Chief Economist at the U.S. International Trade Commission.