October 23, 2013: Bizarro world sounds nice

Posted by mmcmullan on 10/23/2013

Good morning,

Good Wednesday morning. Looks like you had a late night. That’s okay, the Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) forgives you if you’ve got to caffeinate your way through a hangover after having partied too hearty following yesterday’s late release of September’s jobs numbers that showed a booming labor market in a healthy economic recovery.

Oh, wait ... this isn’t bizzaro world. The delayed-by-the-government-shutdown unemployment report was actually pretty weak, and, among other things, showed that only 2,000 manufacturing jobs were created. It also showed, after adjusting the numbers for July and August, that 2,000 fewer jobs were created previously. That makes for a gain of ... well ... zero. That puts us at 12,000 total for the year, which is nowhere near the rate needed to fulfill President Obama’s campaign pledge to help create 1 million of them by 2017.

Maybe this is bizarro world, because our economic priorities are way out of whack. Instead of expanding our trade deficit with China under the guise of creating more jobs (nice pairing of flags, Chamber of Commerce) we need to focus on a real jobs agenda. AAM’s got one sitting right here.

And just in case you’ve caught your breath: The October jobs report is coming right down the pike. It should be pretty topsy turvy, writes Jeffrey Sparshott for the Wall Street Journal, thanks to the skewing effects of the shutdown.

Elsewhere around the web:

The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) is taking Buy America very seriously as it searches for a company to build hundreds of rapid transit cars, reports Rachele Huennekens of Frying Pan News:

CTA’s addendum to its Invitation for Bids encourages companies to develop comprehensive American jobs plans and follow through to create them if awarded the contract – a move that could create as many as 20,000 good American manufacturing and related jobs, according to University of Massachusetts, Amherst economists.

Minnesota is making it easier than ever to source products in the land of 10,000 lakes. Dee DePass of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development has launched the Made in Minnesota Directory, an online site that will help businesses find products manufactured in the state.

Did you know? 32 percent of the Portland (Oregon) area’s GDP comes from manufacturing. That’s more than Detroit and Pittsburgh. Matthew Kish of the Portland Business Journal has the story.

And don’t forget:

There’s more to the jobs report than just numbers. There are people behind the dismal data, and they have real stories to tell. Are you one of them? Have you – or your friends, family, or neighbors – started looking for work recently? Have you stopped? Send in your jobs report to info [at] aamfg [dot] org, tweet it to us at @keepitmadeinUSA, or contact us via Facebook. And read the ever-updating report right here.

Happy Hump Day, America!

-AAM

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