NEW YORK—Big news this morning out of the Bureau of Labor Statistics: the unemployment rate dropped! Like, a lot! People without jobs are now at the lowest number they’ve been at since six months or so after the economy fell off a cliff (which, it should be noted, still remains at an astoundingly high 13.3 million people without jobs).
Except wait, hold up: these modestly, ever so slightly reassuring numbers have a few (you guessed it) qualifications. Because, you know, the economy needs to add 90,000 jobs every single month just to keep up with population growth, which means it’s totally fair if you’re scratching your head right now trying to figure out how 90,000 of those 120,000 new jobs could keep up with population growth leaving the remaining 30,000 to lop a whopping four tenths of a percent off the unemployment rate.
Well! The answer to this, as it always is with these things, appears to be “it’s complicated.” So first the bad news: 315,000 people gave up looking for work. But on the other hand, nearly 400,000 of the “effectively unemployed” became “employed.”
But moving on: Martha Coakley, everyone! The woman who couldn’t keep Ted Kennedy’s Senate seat from falling into the hands of a nude Cosmo model is quickly winning back the hearts and minds of Massachusetts voters by bringing the pain on Bank of America, Wells Fargo, JP Morgan Chase and a handful of other sleazy lenders (fun fact for other foreclosure watchers: the suit also targets MERS)
In a shocking late-week development, Democrats in Congress are showing early signs of maybe beating the Republican caucus at something (for once?) as the debate over the middle-class payroll tax cut continues to heat up. We’ll have to do our best not to let it sour our enthusiasm that here we are yet again watching Democrats only muster up the nerve to take on Republicans by co-opting a Republican issue (holler, DLC!), but hey, a win’s a win!
And it’s making for some great political theater! Because the tax-and-spend party is pushing hard for a tax cut that the Norquist Caucus is opposing for “some reason” (trans. “rich people”), and somehow out of nowhere the GOP has decided that this tax cut has to be… paid for? Which begs the question: who are these imposters are and what they’ve done with the Republican party?!
And speaking of imposters: who is this Grover Norquist person and what has he done with the real Grover Norquist? Because some man claiming to be Grover Norquist has reportedly said that allowing the payroll tax cut to expire would not be a tax increase. Which is all very confusing? Because apparently letting the Bush tax cuts sunset is? In any event, we’re not convinced this Grover Norquist is the real Grover Norquist. [READ MORE AT GIFZETTE]