Once again -- we never should have enacted the Stimulus and spent the money on the Wall Street Bailout. Now we are stuck, and locked into past actions. Which turned out to be wrong ones.
MSNBC: Bleak job scene poses challenge for Obama
Proposals for more stimulus, hiring incentives would add to bloated deficit
The overall “official” unemployment rate stands at 10.2 percent, the highest level since the early 1980s. When so-called “discouraged” and underemployed workers are included, the jobless rate is pushing 18 percent. When the latest employment data is released on Friday, economists expect the report to show a loss of another 130,000 jobs in December.
More troublesome is the scope of job losses compared to previous recessions. With unemployment still rising, payroll levels have shrunk nearly 6 percent since the recession began in December 2007. That is nearly three times the level of job loss during the last recession in 2001.
After the 2001 recession it took 18 months to restore employment to pre-recession levels. At that rate, even if the economy began adding jobs next month, employment levels wouldn't return to pre-recession levels until June 2014.
But opponents of another extension are balking at the cost, which could load another $100 billion onto an already swollen federal budget deficit and add to the $12 trillion national debt.