When it comes to the audacity of trope, it is hard to top President Obama -- a big time jobs killer.
One of the president’s re-election campaign websites features a new attack ad in which a steelworker brands Mitt Romney as a person “like a vampire” for “destroy[ing] thousands of peoples’ careers,” when Romney was the head of private equity firm Bain Capital.
Steven Rattner, Obama’s former economic adviser, says, “I think the ad is unfair…and I don't think there's anything Bain Capital did that they need to be embarrassed about."
What is even more unfair and embarrassing is that Obama ignores his own record of putting people out of work.
A recent analysis by economists Timothy Conley and Bill Dupor finds that Obama’s $862-billion stimulus, “created/saved approximately 450 thousand state and local government jobs and destroyed/forestalled roughly one million private sector jobs.” That’s a net loss of more than half a million jobs—all from the private sector.
Then there are Obama’s unfair and embarrassing boasts about how his bailout of General Motors and Chrysler saved the auto industry. But, as Washington Post columnist and Fox News contributor Charles Krauthammer has pointed out, “Within the first six months of the bailout, the auto industry lost 140,000 jobs. And three years later it has not recovered the employment level. It’s still minus 20,000. At the same time, one in ten auto dealerships evaporated—were wiped out. We started with 20,000—it’s about 17-and-a-half thousand right now.”
Speaking of 20,000, that’s the number of “direct jobs” said not to be created because Obama blocked construction of the Keystone Oil Pipeline from Canada. That estimate comes from TransCanada, the company that wants to build the pipeline, which also projects that the pipeline would create nearly 120,000 “indirect jobs” in industries like restaurants and hotels supporting the construction.
An analysis by finance professor Joseph Mason of Louisiana State University finds that Obama’s six-month moratorium on deepwater drilling in the Gulf of Mexico cost an estimated 19,000 jobs and $1.1 billion in lost wages. There’s additional unfairness and embarrassment in this loss. The House Natural Resources Committee has uncovered new evidence that Obama’s White House justified the moratorium only by rewriting and distorting a study of the Gulf by outside experts.
Then there’s the estimate by the Congressional Budget Office that the implementation of Obamacare would destroy 800,000 jobs by 2021. And Reuters recently did an in-depth investigation of Obama’s “green jobs” initiatives, finding that they have wilted in results. Reuters reports that, “The wind industry, for example, has shed 10,000 jobs since 2009 even as the energy capacity of wind farms has nearly doubled, according to the American Wind Energy Association.”
And therein lies an appropriate trope for Obama’s real jobs record: it is just so much wind with little energy produced.
So here's my advice for President Obama going forward: before you attack Mitt Romney again about jobs, Mr. President, remember that people who live in glass Oval Offices shouldn’t throw stones.
Jon Kraushar, a communications consultant to corporate and political leaders, is at www.jonkraushar.net.