Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Fuzzy Math, or fuzzy memory?

In an email to Pennsylvanians last week, Gov. Corbett boasted about his record of making Pennsylvania a leader in job growth.  He practically described Pennsylvania as a utopia of private sector job creation since he took office. He’s even cited “evidence” to support his overstated claim. According to the email:

Governor Corbett is committed to creating an economic environment where job creators can flourish, and, in just one year, the commonwealth has been making progress. 2011 saw the largest one-year growth in private sector jobs in Pennsylvania since 1999 with the private sector adding 82,000 jobs.

Other than totally ignoring the condition of the overall US and state economies since 2008, he forgets that his policies have actually put tens of thousands Pennsylvanians out of work since he took office.

So apparently a laid off teacher with three part time jobs at a Walmart, Burger King and a convenience store is better for the jobs number (+3 jobs), than a teacher in a classroom (-1 job).

And remember this was the week after news broke that Gov. Corbett promised over $1.7 billion in tax breaks for Royal Dutch Shell – yep the same one with over $31 billion in profits last year.

However, what is most interesting is that just three days after the governor’s giddy email, the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics released its report regarding May’s employment numbers. And while unemployment was unchanged in May, Pennsylvania actually was among states with the highest number of jobs lost throughout the month -- nearly 10,000 jobs. Only North Carolina lost more.

So with an unchanged unemployment number, at best Corbett’s policies are treading water.

If I were Gov. Corbett I’d continually try to tout the Shell cracker plant as a job creator too, if I lost 10,000 jobs last month in addition to the tens of thousands of jobs last year.

By my math, $66 million a year (for 25 years) resulting in 10,000 jobs may buy us one more month of “unchanged” unemployment figures.