Vote with the Facts!
We feel that there is no more urgent matter than to share these researched facts nationwide in order
to counter "the spin," register voters, and support them all the way to the polls.
© 2004, Vote with the Facts & US Face to Face
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1) How many jobs have disappeared during this administration?
Since the recession began 41 months ago, 1 million jobs have disappeared, the greatest sustained job loss since the Great Depression. There have been greater losses in the private sector - a loss of 1.7 million jobs since March 2001. If job growth had been at the pace of other post-war business cycles (a 5.5% growth by the 41st month), then over 7 million new jobs would have been created by now.
[Employment data is above comparing past recessions.]
Source: Greatest sustained job loss since the Great Depression, http://www.jobwatch.org
2) How many fewer jobs are there than what the Bush administration projected with its tax cuts?
2,668,000 fewer jobs than the Bush administration projected would be created by its tax cuts.
The Bush Administration predicted that its tax cuts would produce 5.5 million new jobs by the end of 2004. To reach the 5.5 million target, job growth would have to average 473,000 per month over four times the level of job growth in June 2004.
Source:One year later, Bush Administration’s tax cuts not fulfilling job creation promises, http://www.jobwatch.org; Bush Administration's tax cuts falling short in job creation, http://www.jobwatch.org, Missing the moving target: Meager job growth and the poor track record of the administration's job forecasts, by Jared Bernstein, Lee Price, and Isaac Shapiro, http://www.epinet.org/content.cfm/issuebriefs_ib197, February 12, 2004 | EPI Issue Brief #197, http://www.jobwatch.org/creating/index.html, http://www.epinet.org/content.cfm/webfeatures_econindicators_jobspict
3) From 1947-2001 which party holding the White House has produced the highest unemployment rate?
The Republicans. Five GOP presidents produced an average unemployment rate of 6.3% whereas five Democratic presidents produced an average unemployment rate of 4.8%. Unemployment under Bush now averages 6.1% (an increase of 1.4% since 2001), approaching the average unemployment rate of Republican presidents.
Source: "GOP Always Falls Down on the Jobs," Larry M. Bartels, Director of the Center for the Study of Democratic Politics at Princeton University, Los Angeles Times commentary, Sept. 26, 2003, www.latimes.com [type "Bartels" in Archive search]
4) How many manufacturing jobs have been lost in the United States during this administration as of December 2003?
2.6 million. When President Bush took office, about 17.1 million Americans worked in factories; today, only 14.5 million do. In November 2003, another seventeen thousand manufacturing jobs disappeared. Manufacturing employment has now fallen for forty straight months. In October, 73.5% of plants and equipment were in active use. Three years ago, more than 80% were. AFL-CIO-affiliated unions have been hit hard by the loss of 2.3 million jobs since January 2001, particularly in the manufacturing sector, which has cut payrolls.
Source: "The Talk of the Town," John Cassidy, The New Yorker, Dec. 8, 2003, http://www.newyorker.com/talk/content/?031215ta_talk_cassidy
Source: "200 AFL-CIO workers taking unpaid leave," Leigh Strope, AP labor writer, Sat., Nov. 29, 2003, http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/business/apbiz_story.asp?category=1310&slug=Labor%20Money
5) How do wages and profits compare at this time?
In short, corporate profits have soared while wages and benefits have lagged. Labor compensation’s share of total income growth averaged 61% in previous recoveries. In this current "recovery", labor compensation accounts for only 29% of the total income growth.
Source: "Fast growth for profits, slow growth for wages and benefits," Snapshot for Dec. 3, 2003, Josh Bivens, Economic Policy Institute, http://www.epinet.org/content.cfm?id=1558
6) How do increases in corporate profits compare with labor compensation [workers’ wages and benefits]?
Corporate profits are up 57.5% while labor compensation has increased a meager 1.5% since the first quarter of 2001.
Source:Economic Snapshots, Snapshot for April 12, 2004, http://www.epinet.org/content.cfm/webfeatures_snapshots_04122004
7) How many American workers were unemployed as of May 2004?
8.2 million. Many of these individuals are the victims of trade and dislocation who will never get their old jobs back. In fact, more than 1.9 million workers were unemployed for more than six months in 2003, the highest rate of long-term unemployment since 1983.
Sources: Jobs Picture, June 4, 2004, http://www.epinet.org/content.cfm/webfeatures_econindicators_jobspict_200440604
On the President’s Fiscal Year 2005 Budget for the U.S. Department of Labor, Ross Eisenbrey, Submitted to the U.S. House Committee On Ways and Means on March 4, 2004, http://www.epinet.org/content.cfm/webfeatures_viewpoints_FY2005_FedBudget_and_jobs
8) What kind of jobs are being created since Bush took office?
Of the 3.1 million jobs created since last August, nearly two-thirds are in
low-wage industries, according to several reports issued recently by banks and
economic research groups. For the labor market as a whole, according to Stephen
Roach, chief economist for
In the last quarter, mainly low-paying service jobs were created. 40% of the new jobs were in temp and retail.
Source: "Agreement will just send more U.S. jobs overseas," John J. Sweeney, Miami Herald, Nov. 16, 2003, http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/news/special_packages/focus/7264446.htm
The new jobs typically pay barely half of what the old jobs did. Most don’t offer pensions or health insurance for retirees.
Source: "Iowa plant closings mirror nationwide manufacturing job loss," Stephanie Simon, Los Angeles Times, Dec. 07, 2003, http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/03341/247858.stm
9) Why was this called a "jobless recovery"?
Employment growth was at the lowest for any recovery since the government started keeping such statistics in 1939.
Source: "Mystery of the ‘jobless recovery’: As Americans celebrate Labor Day, they face a historically weak labor market and meager rise in paychecks," David R. Francis, staff writer, Christian Science Monitor, http://www.csmonitor.com/2003/0829/p01s02-usec.html
We are now facing the unprecedented phenomenon of a "job loss" recovery: two years into the rebound, a net loss of 768,000 jobs.
Normally our economy creates millions of jobs when it recovers from a recession. The last recession — the one that cost Bush’s father his job — was considered exceptional in that it was followed by a "jobless recovery." But even that "jobless recovery" had produced a net gain of 1.4 million jobs by the time two years had passed. The two previous economic recoveries in 1982 and 1975 produced 7.2 million and 4.7 million jobs, respectively, in their first two years.
Source: "Economy on upswing, but jobless recovery may do Bush no good," Mark Weisbrot, Salt Lake Tribune, Dec. 5, 2003, http://www.sltrib.com/2003/Dec/12052003/commenta/117189.asp
10) What workplace policies are in place or are being promoted by the Bush administration?
The administration wants to revoke overtime pay and has eliminated OSHA-based ergonomic standards that would protect workers. OSHA estimates the benefits of preventing work related injuries to be approximately $9 billion per year saved and costing businesses only around $4.5 million to implement.
Sources: "8 million may lose OT pay: Bush administration proposal would dramatically alter rules for paying overtime, study says," CNN, June 27, 2003, http://money.cnn.com/2003/06/26/news/economy/epi/
"White House Wins Overtime Pay Flap," CBS News, Nov. 22, 2003, http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/07/11/politics/main562735.shtml
"Bush Repeals Ergonomic Rule," CBS News, July 1, 2003, http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/07/01/politics/main561163.shtml
11) How have wages been affected?
The real wages of the typical (i.e., median) worker stopped growing entirely in 2002, after growing at an inflation-adjusted rate of 2% per year through 2001.
During 2003, real wages have been falling about 1% for low-wage and high-wage workers, and wages have been stagnant for middle-wage workers.
Source: "Labor market left behind: Evidence shows that post-recession economy has not turned into a recovery for workers," Jared Bernstein and Lawrence Mishel, Economic Policy Institute, Sept. 2003, http://www.epinet.org/content.cfm/briefingpapers_bp142
12) How do American voters feel about their jobs and the economy?
The administration gets low marks on its efforts to create more jobs: 62% of voters say it has made either not much or no progress at all toward doing so. 79% of Democrats and 68% of Independents don’t see the administration making progress.
The issue of jobs is a pressing concern, as 41% of American voters say they’re at least somewhat worried about a possible job loss in their household.
Most voters (55%) say the national economy is in bad shape, and less than half think the administration is making much progress in improving it; 50% say the administration is not making much progress or none at all.
Source: "CBS Poll: Bush Failing On Economy," Sept. 7, 2003, http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/09/05/opinion/polls/main571872.shtml
13) Where is the job growth?
23 months into the "recovery", private sector jobs are running nearly seven million workers below the norm of the typical hiring cycle. America is short of jobs as never before and offshore outsourcing [jobs overseas] is ramping up as never before. In China, foreign-invested enterprises employ about 3.5 million workers. That number has tripled over the past decade. Add in the subsidiaries funded out of Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan, you’ve got another 3.25 million workers. Employment in the information technology business in India is 650,000 as of December 2003 and is expected to go up another three to four times in the next five years.
Sources: "Outsourcing: The calculus of migrating jobs," Erika Kinetz, New York Times, Dec. 6, 2003, http://www.iht.com/articles/120443.html
"Who Wins and Who Loses as Jobs Move Overseas?" Erika Kinetz, New York Times, Dec. 7, 2003, http://www.nytimes.com/2003/12/07/business/yourmoney/07out.html?ex=1071378000&en=9b0b3f301239bb62&ei=5062&partner=GOOGLE
"Productivity gains in this recovery are mostly the result of trimming workers from the payroll, which benefits business earnings. Alas, this elixir can’t keep working forever. Look out."
Source: "Profits and Layoffs," A. Gary Shilling, 12.22.03, http://www.forbes.com/columnists/free_forbes/2003/1222/224.html
14) What is President Bush's stance toward federal civilian workers?
"The 170,000 employees . . . will not receive civil service protection" and private contractors will increasingly take over jobs now in the federal workforce. "President Bush's current plan, as shown in the creation of the Department of Homeland Security, is nothing less than the privatization of the federal government," writes Professor Ezra Suleiman in Dismantling Democratic States, just published by Princeton University Press.
Source: "Dissing Government," Jim Hoagland, Nov. 30, 2003, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A20245-2003Nov28.html
As of November 2002, Bush announced plans to allow the private sector to compete for nearly half the nation’s 1.8 million federal civilian jobs, a move that enraged labor unions and their Democratic allies in Congress.
"This proposal means that the safety of our communities could be entrusted to the administration’s favorite companies and their lobbyists, instead of to dedicated, trained federal workers. Now we see the real White House agenda — it’s not homeland security; it’s union-busting," said Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-MA), the senior Democrat on the Labor and Human Resources Committee.
Source: "Bush plans to privatize jobs," Edwin Chen, Los Angeles Times, Fri., Nov. 15, 2002, http://www.dfw.com/mld/dfw/news/4526019.htm
15) What is President Bush's position toward the well-being of our servicemen and women?
"The Army Times ran a story with the headline "An Act of ‘Betrayal’" and the subtitle "In the midst of war, key family benefits face cuts." The article went on to assert that there has been "a string of actions by the Bush administration to cut or hold down growth in pay and benefits, including basic pay, combat pay, health-care benefits, and the death gratuity paid to survivors of troops who die on active duty.
"It’s hard to deny the stunning insensitivity of Bush’s remarks back on July 2: ‘There are some who feel like that, you know, the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is bring ’em on. We got the force necessary to deal with the security situation.’"
Source: "Spurned soldiers of the U.S," Paul Krugman, New York Times, Nov. 15, 2003, http://www.dfw.com/mld/dfw/news/opinion/7270187.htm
Vermont Governor Howard Dean assailed Bush for having announced that "he was going to cut the combat pay" for soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan and for having "cut 164,000 veterans off" from health care benefits.
As a Pentagon spokeswoman noted, Bush signed a bill last week that boosts monthly combat pay from $150 to $225, along with family separation benefits.
But the San Francisco Chronicle reported that the administration changed its stance only after publicity about its position last summer.
Source: "Dean Assails Bush on Defense: Rival Cites Combat Pay, Veterans’ Health Benefits," Howard Kurtz, Washington Post staff writer, Dec. 1, 2003, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A23741-2003Nov30.html
16) What is the trend in health care costs for American workers?
One survey found that the average health benefit cost per employee rose 10.1% this year and increased 14.7% in 2002, according to a new study by Mercer Human Resource Consulting.
Companies lowered their costs, the survey found, by shifting more of the burden to workers.
Sources: "Texas HMOs keep profitable streak going," Darrin Schlegel, Houston Chronicle, Dec. 10, 2003, http://www.chron.com/cs/CDA/ssistory.mpl/business/2283563
"City workers must pay more for health plan," Dec. 7, 2003, http://www.coloradoan.com/news/stories/20031207/opinion/782054.html
17) Open: Do you feel secure in your job? Are you concerned about your job being outsourced, downsized, or privatized? Do you have lay-off protections such as are provided when working under protections provided by unions?
Please share this information face to face with as many others as possible based on as much commitment you can muster in yourself for your country, your fellow Americans and for the world. For more referenced questions and answers please visit our website at: www.votewiththefacts.org