Jobs Report Broken Record: Too Few Created in June to Keep Up with Population Growth

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By Joe Guzzardi

Joe is a CAPS Senior Writing Fellow whose commentaries about California's social issues have run in newspapers throughout California and the country for nearly 30 years. Contact Joe at joeguzzardi@capsweb.org, or find him on Twitter @joeguzzardi19.

The writer's views are his own.

July 6, 2012

The Labor Department’s June jobs report was predictably bad. A mere 80,000 new jobs were added to the dismal economy. Analysts, noting that 80,000 isn’t enough jobs to keep up with population growth, forecast more of the same during summer’s remaining months and probably longer. [Job Growth Remains Tepid, No Dent in Rate of Unemployed, by Catherine Rampell, New York Times, July 6, 2012]

The 80,000 figure is interesting. A month ago President Obama announced that the Department of Homeland Security would not deport aliens age 16-30 and would issue them work permits. The White House estimated that the president’s executive order would apply to about 800,000. Assuming that the new jobs and amnestied alien totals are correct and if June is a barometer, it would take ten months to create enough employment to provide jobs for those who, until Obama’s edict, were unemployable because of their immigration status.

Continued job stagnation isn’t surprising to long-time followers of immigration’s negative impact on employment. Outsourcing, ratcheting up the numbers of non-immigrant work visas, and an underground economy that pays aliens off the books inevitably created an America where Americans can't find work.

Outside of the White House, where they’re kidding themselves, there’s not an optimist to be found. Academics Carmen M. Reinhart and Kenneth S. Rogoff whose seminal book about financial crises, “This Time is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly,” calculate that today’s economy has behaved worse than any from the 800 years they’ve previously studied. Said the authors: “Financial crises are protracted affairs.”

Coincidentally, President Obama is in my hometown today speaking at Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Mellon University.  An uncertain welcome awaits him. To begin with, the university is located in Oakland, one of Pittsburgh’s most congested areas. Obama’s entourage will make traffic unbearable. Add to that the 100 degree temperatures and it’s hard to imagine that Obama’s visit will make him any new friends. [Obama to Makes Stops in Ohio before Visiting CMU, by Tim McNulty, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, July 6, 2012]

Since Carnegie Mellon promotes an elite, diverse and global agenda, Obama won’t be talking the hard talk about immigration. Still, I don’t understand why, with only four months left until November and more bad jobs news waiting in each of those months, the President would grant work authorization to 800,000 illegal immigrants at the expense of unemployed Americans.

Obama, if he were to call for an immigration moratorium, could minimize their long-term suffering. The beneficial effects of less immigration would be quickly reflected in the jobs data.

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