economics

May Jobs Report *Better*, Which Is *Better* Than *Worse*!

Women are getting their jobs back, erasing some of the erasures in the last several decades' gains. Got it? Good.

The monthly jobs report is out from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, showing the country adding 559,000 jobs in May and the unemployment rate dropping to 5.8 — the lowest unemployment has been since the pandemic crushed employment last year. Also good news: Unlike some previous reductions in the unemployment rate that were distorted because people had given up on looking for work, the "labor force participation rate" for May wasn't changed much from April, which means that the reduction in the unemployment rate went down because people really were finding jobs.

President Joe Biden called the May job numbers "great news for our economy and the recovery," and pointed out that over two million new jobs have been created since he took office. Here, have yourselves some video!

Biden also pointed out that when the monthly survey was taken in early May, only about 35 percent of working-aged adults were fully vaccinated. Since then, some 21 million more Americans have been vaccinated, and the employment news is expected to keep improving as more and more people feel safe to go back to work. He also noted that some 20,000 new jobs have been created in child care, which should help people seek work, too.

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WonkTV

Put Down That Hacky-Sacky, It's Time For Jen Psaki!

Your White House Press Briefing Is Here.

Jen Psaki is all ready for the weekend, and we bet you are too. She'll probably field questions about the May jobs report, and if we're lucky, she'll make Peter Doocy look stupid again, not that he usually needs an assist. You watch now, and we have lunch!


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History Facts

May 29 In Labor History: Rosie The Riveter Eats Her Own Goddamn Sammich

But who will make the sandwiches if the women are in the workforce?

On May 29, 1943, Norman Rockwell published a Saturday Evening Post cover of a woman working an industrial job. This cover represented the millions of women entering the workforce during World War II to build the material needed to defeat the Axis. This image was part of a larger cultural phenomena referring to these women workers as Rosie the Riveter.

When the United States entered World War II in late 1941, it created an instant labor shortage. With immigration not a possibility except from Mexico, it opened up unprecedented economic opportunities for both women and minorities. The number of women working increased from 12 to 20 million. Before the war, most working women labored in poorly paid service jobs, clerical work, or sales positions. When they did work in manufacturing, it was often in the ever-exploitative apparel industry, mostly in the South and still a bit in New England. During the war, their labor became much more valuable. The number of women in manufacturing grew by 141 percent and the number in industries making material for war skyrocketed by 463 percent. Women working in domestic service declined by 20 percent.

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economics

Joe Biden Has A Budget, And It's DELICIOUS.

A chicken in every pot. And ice cream. Because everyone needs a treat!

Joe Biden is getting ready to submit his first annual budget request to Congress, and it reflects a lot of big spending on things that would improve the economy and Americans' lives. And while it would rival the levels of government spending in World War II as a portion of the US economy, it also anticipates paying for Biden's biggest legislative priorities, the American Jobs Plan and the American Family Plan, through higher taxes on corporations and the wealthy. The budget also anticipates that those higher tax rates would eventually lead to reductions in the federal deficit in the 2030s, and that inflation would be held to no more than 2.3 percent.

Now, it's worth pointing out that for decades, presidential budget requests have increasingly become more a matter of laying out policy and spending priorities than actual plans for government spending, especially in years when Congress and the White House were held by different parties. With Democrats running both houses of Congress, Biden's budget is far more likely to resemble what Congress ends up passing than in recent years. Donald Trump's budgets would regularly zero out entire agencies, and then even congressional Republicans would ignore what he asked for.

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