FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

No Jobs for the New Economy (or the Old)

 

December did not bring Americans any jobs. To the contrary, the private sector lost 13,000 jobs from the previous month.

If December is a harbinger of the new year, it is going to be a bad one. The past year, hailed by Republican propagandists and “free trade” economists as proof of globalism’s benefit to Americans, was dismal. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ nonfarm payroll data, the US “super economy” created a miserable 1,054,000 net new jobs during 2007.

This is not enough to keep up with population growth–even at the rate discouraged Americans, unable to find jobs, are dropping out of the work force–thus the rise in the unemployment rate to 5%.

During the past year, US goods producing industries, continuing a long trend, lost 374,000 jobs.

But making things was the “old economy.” The “new economy” provides services. Last year 1,428,000 private sector service jobs were created.

Are the “free trade” propagandists correct that these service jobs, which are our future, are high-end jobs in research and development, innovation, venture capitalism, information technology, high finance, and science and engineering where the US allegedly has such a shortage of scientists and engineers that it must import them from abroad on work visas?

Not according to the official job statistics.

What occupations provided the 1.4 million service jobs in 2007?

Waitresses and bartenders accounted for 304,200, or 21% of the new service jobs last year and 29% of the net new jobs.

Health care and social assistance accounted for 478,400, or 33% of the new service jobs and 45% of the net new jobs. Ambulatory health care and hospitals accounted for the lion’s share of these jobs.

Professional and business services accounted for 314,000, or 22% of the new service jobs and 30% of the net new jobs. Are these professional and business service jobs the high-end jobs of which “free traders” speak? Decide for yourself. Services to buildings and dwellings account for 53,600 of the jobs. Accounting and bookkeeping services account for 60,500 of the jobs. Architectural and engineering services account for 54,700 of the jobs. Computer systems design and related services account for 70,400 of the jobs. Management consultants account for 88,400 of the jobs.

There were more jobs for hospital orderlies than for architects and engineers. Waitresses and bartenders accounted for as many of last year’s new jobs as the entirety of professional and business services.

Wholesale and retail trade, transportation, and utilities accounted for 181,000 of 2007’s new jobs.

Where are the rest of the new jobs? There are a few scattered among arts, entertainment, and recreation, repair and maintenance, personal and laundry services, and membership associations and organizations.

That’s it.

Keep in mind that the loss of 374,000 goods producing jobs must be subtracted from the 1,428,000 new service jobs to arrive at the net job gain figure. The new service jobs account for more than 100% of the net new jobs.

Keep in mind, too, that many of the new jobs are not filled by American citizens. Many of the engineering and science jobs were filled by foreigners brought in on work visas. Indians and others from abroad can be hired to work in the US for one-third less. The engineering and science jobs that are offshored are paid as little as one-fifth of the US salary. Even foreign nurses are brought in on work visas. No one knows how many of the hospital orderlies are illegals.

What a super new economy Americans have! US job growth has a distinctly third world flavor. A very small percentage of 2007’s new jobs required a college education. Since there are so few jobs for university graduates, how is “education the answer”?

Where is the benefit to Americans of offshoring? The answer is that the benefit is confined to a few highly paid executives who receive multi-million dollar bonuses for increasing profits by offshoring jobs. The rest of the big money went to Wall Street crooks who sold trusting people subprime derivatives.

“Free traders” will assert that the benefit is in low Wal-Mart prices. But the prices are low only because China keeps its currency pegged to the dollar. Thus, the Chinese currency value falls with the dollar. The peg will not continue forever. The dollar has lost 60% of its value against the Euro during the years of the Bush regime. Already China is having to adjust the peg. When the peg goes, Wal-Mart shoppers will think they are in Neiman Marcus.

Just as Americans have been betrayed by “their” leaders in government at all levels, they have been betrayed by business “leaders” on Wall Street and in the corporations. US government and business elites have proven themselves to be Americans’ worst enemies.

PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal editorial page and Contributing Editor of National Review. He is coauthor of The Tyranny of Good Intentions.He can be reached at: PaulCraigRoberts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

More articles by:

Paul Craig Roberts is a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury and Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal. Roberts’ How the Economy Was Lost is now available from CounterPunch in electronic format. His latest book is The Neoconservative Threat to World Order.

April 25, 2018
Stanley L. Cohen
Selective Outrage
Dan Kovalik
The Empire Turns Its Sights on Nicaragua – Again!
Joseph Essertier
The Abductees of Japan and Korea
Ramzy Baroud
The Ghost of Herut: Einstein on Israel, 70 Years Ago
W. T. Whitney
Imprisoned FARC Leader Faces Extradition: Still No Peace in Colombia
Manuel E. Yepe
Washington’s Attack on Syria Was a Mockery of the World
John White
My Silent Pain for Toronto and the World
Dean Baker
Bad Projections: the Federal Reserve, the IMF and Unemployment
David Schultz
Why Donald Trump Should Not be Allowed to Pardon Michael Cohen, His Friends, or Family Members
Mel Gurtov
Will Abe Shinzo “Make Japan Great Again”?
Binoy Kampmark
Enoch Powell: Blood Speeches and Anniversaries
Frank Scott
Weapons and Walls
April 24, 2018
Carl Boggs
Russia and the War Party
William A. Cohn
Carnage Unleashed: the Pentagon and the AUMF
Nathan Kalman-Lamb
The Racist Culture of Canadian Hockey
María Julia Bertomeu
On Angers, Disgusts and Nauseas
Nick Pemberton
How To Buy A Seat In Congress 101
Ron Jacobs
Resisting the Military-Now More Than Ever
Paul Bentley
A Velvet Revolution Turns Bloody? Ten Dead in Toronto
Sonali Kolhatkar
The Left, Syria and Fake News
Manuel E. Yepe
The Confirmation of Democracy in Cuba
Peter Montgomery
Christian Nationalism: Good for Politicians, Bad for America and the World
Ted Rall
Bad Drones
Jill Richardson
The Latest Attack on Food Stamps
Andrew Stewart
What Kind of Unionism is This?
Ellen Brown
Fox in the Hen House: Why Interest Rates Are Rising
April 23, 2018
Patrick Cockburn
In Middle East Wars It Pays to be Skeptical
Thomas Knapp
Just When You Thought “Russiagate” Couldn’t Get Any Sillier …
Gregory Barrett
The Moral Mask
Robert Hunziker
Chemical Madness!
David Swanson
Senator Tim Kaine’s Brief Run-In With the Law
Dave Lindorff
Starbucks Has a Racism Problem
Uri Avnery
The Great Day
Nyla Ali Khan
Girls Reduced to Being Repositories of Communal and Religious Identities in Kashmir
Ted Rall
Stop Letting Trump Distract You From Your Wants and Needs
Steve Klinger
The Cautionary Tale of Donald J. Trump
Kevin Zeese - Margaret Flowers
Conflict Over the Future of the Planet
Cesar Chelala
Gideon Levy: A Voice of Sanity from Israel
Weekend Edition
April 20, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Ruling Class Operatives Say the Darndest Things: On Devils Known and Not
Conn Hallinan
The Great Game Comes to Syria
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Mother of War
Andrew Levine
“How Come?” Questions
Doug Noble
A Tale of Two Atrocities: Douma and Gaza
Kenneth Surin
The Blight of Ukania
Howard Lisnoff
How James Comey Became the Strange New Hero of the Liberals
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail