Weekly Audit: Welfare, Work and the Bailout Bonanza

by Zach Carter, Media Consortium MediaWire Blogger

The U.S. economy lost nearly 600,000 jobs in January, bringing total losses in the past three months over 1.5 million—more than the entire population of Philadelphia. If there ever was a good time to mend the tattered U.S. social safety net, it's now. While unemployment benefits and food stamps remain relatively uncontroversial, basic welfare continues to be neglected by the general media and vilified by the right. And as of this moment, a responsible welfare program is needed more than at any point since the 1930s.

Manufacturing Tuesday: Vol. 2.3.09

Greetings everyone to another new installment in the Manufacturing series. Now this was intended to be released yesterday, but some emergency family issues came up that needed to be resolved (this seems to be happening a lot to me on these days lately!). So, please accept my apologies on the delay. Saying that, though there is a silver lining, I'm going to go ahead and basically give you a more "fresher" version of what was planned for yesterday (I normally write these up on Saturday and Sunday). So without further adieu....

The Numbers

Yesterday we got the latest ISM Manufacturing Survey Index figures for the month of January. The patient is recovering, but is still in critical condition!

Econ' Notables & Quotable for the Week


Hello everyone, sorry I’ve been away.  I do wish everyone is doing well in these economic hard times.  If it pleases this court, I would like to start something new today.  Talking to our esteemed Mister Oak, he noted that something would be nice to fill in the weekend shift.  Well, today I would like to submit “Econ’ Notables & Quotable”.

The Very Bad Year is Just the Beginning

Anyone in denial about the United States and the economy should now get over it.

The unemployment numbers for December came in and it ain't pretty.

The unemployment rate is now 7.2%. This is the largest unemployment jump since 1945, The massive job hemorrhage shows the economy is in free fall.


Also the Congressional Budget Office released it's Budget 2009 Outlook report and it ain't pretty either.

  • CBO projects that the deficit this year will total $1.2 trillion, or 8.3 percent of GDP
  • CBO expects federal revenues to decline by $166 billion, or 6.6 percent, from the amount in 2008
  • An unemployment rate that will exceed 9 percent early in 2010
  • CBO anticipates that the current recession, which started in December 2007, will last until the second half of 2009, making it the longest recession since World War II

The de-industrialization of the U.S.

So this is how it worked: instead of greening our manufacturing base, amping up our recycling system and competing on the basis of better production technology, we shipped our production to China, which is busy polluting themselves and spewing carbon dioxide. In return, the Chinese took the hundreds of billions from sales to the U.S. and reinvested the money here, helping to make our sprawl even spawlier and our military even more wasteful.

Manufacturing Monday: Week of 12.28.2008

Greetings folks, I hope your holiday season is going well. In case you were wondering, there was no Manufacturing update last week, family and health related issues. This week will be kinda short, my apologies, but I wanted to cut some of the gloom and doom for the holiday season. We got stuff on solar energy, a new grant system for electric car innovation, milestones on wind, and something for the kids! But as always, we hit our first section...

The Numbers!

Manufacturing Tuesday: Week of 12.08.08

Damn, talk about a pretty intense week! The auto sector looks like it just...just might get saved. Still, it looks as if the issue of over capacity is being looked on, which means job cuts. Sadly, that seems to be the theme of this week's manufacturing update. Well actually there is something on health care...think of it as "nyceve lite". They say it gets darkest before the light, well this must be a long tunnel then. ISM is saying that '09 will suck as bad as 2008. Well before I dispense with the unfortunates, it's time for the Numbers!

The Numbers