Job Creation: Tale of Three Presidents

Job creation is the #1 issue in the 2012 U.S. presidential elections.

Though influential, no president ever has nor ever will have the power to create jobs at will. That province will always remain within the undirected private sector loosely assisted by the U.S. Congress and The Federal Reserve.

Total U.S. Employment 1992-2011 – Democratic Presidents in Blue / Republican in Red (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Total U.S. Job Creation  1992-2011

Since 1992 there have been two major events that have shaped U.S. economic policy on job creation. They are the tech bubble collapse of 2001 and the housing bubble collapse of 2008.

A review of the job creation records of the last three presidents – Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama – documented by the Bureau of Labor Statistics proves beyond a shadow of doubt that presidents cannot control job creation.

Looking at the last 3 president’s job creation records, more than anything else, shows that bipartisan efforts are necessary to dig the U.S. out of it’s current economic pickle.

Bill Clinton  1993-2000

Total Employment under President Clinton (Red is for both Bush presidencies)

Job Creation under President Clinton

Sandwiched in red between two different Bush presidents, these two charts show the total number of Americans employed and total number of jobs created from the year just before to the year just after President Clinton assumed office.

Democrats have every reason to be proud of President Clinton’s record of job creation. During his administration there were over 19 million total real jobs created in this country at a record pace of 2.4 million jobs per year.

As can be seen, job creation was way up even in the first year under Clinton after George H.W. Bush.

But because of the collapse of the tech bubble at the end of Clinton’s Administration nearly 3.5 million worth of American jobs growth was totally lost in the first year of George W. Bush’s Administration. That is huge.

It is not as much as President Obama experienced his first year in office, but not far removed from that.

George W. Bush  2001-2008

George W. Bush had a much more difficult economic experience than did President Clinton.

Total Employment under George W. Bush (Blue is for Clinton and Obama presidencies)

Job Creation under President Bush

George W. entered office at the beginning of the tech bubble collapse and his presidency ended at the beginning of the housing bubble collapse.

That is tough for any president to deal with.

Of the three presidents, George W. had the most complex set of economic issues to handle.

George W. implemented across-the-board tax cuts for all Americans in 2001 and more in 2003 to combat the tech bubble collapse.

Today, unfortunately, those tax cuts have been politicized by the Obama Administration into the so-called “tax cuts for the rich” for pure partisan electoral purposes.

The severe housing bubble collapse at the end of the Bush Administration threatened a modern day Depression.

President Bush approved TARP, run by The Fed, to combat the housing bubble collapse. That program was continued under President Obama.

Barack Obama  2009-2011

President Obama entered his presidency under the most difficult of circumstances.

Total Employment under President Obama  2009-2011

Job Creations under President Obama

The housing bubble collapse at the end of the Bush Administration was the most severe economic calamity suffered by the United States since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

The Obama administration wisely continued the TARP program that ultimately prevented a modern day 1930s-style depression.

TARP got politically vilified by both the Tea Party Movement and later by the Occupy Movement.

Unfortunately, Obama jumped on the TARP vilification bandwagon and blamed it and the ultra-rich for everything.

Obama got ARRA, the so-called “stimulus” package, passed and signed into law within one month in office.

Ignoring the 5.5 million jobs lost in 2009, ARRA has created a net gain of -8,000 jobs as of December 2011!


Looking closely at the circumstance and actions of the last three presidencies, it becomes obvious that the economic policies of any president, Democratic or Republican, cannot ideologically control nor define policy necessary to recover the U.S. economy in its current condition.

It will require us, the American voters in 2012, to direct this nation through our votes for President and for U.S. Congressmen and for state governments to set this nation, as best we can, back on a course of fiscal recovery.

Take that responsibility seriously. Your decedents depend on it.


About azleader

Learning to see life more clearly... one image at a time!

Posted on Jan 16, 2012, in 2012 Elections, ARRA, Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Economy, George W. Bush, news, Politics, U.S. Economy. Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. kzackuslheureux

    What you fail to mention, is the Bush administration single-handedly put an end to the tech boom. I know; that is how my family was employed at the time. The industry was huge and no end was in sight! Fiberglass! Everything, phone, cable, internet, were modernizing into fiber-optic lines that needed to be laid and installed. When Bush W. came to office, one of his very first acts was to close down that program, and some jobs were just left in the middle, incomplete.
    Then you had a housing crash because of the deregulation of loans and nothing was offered ethically anymore. It all had a short life-span for a quick pay-out. And then on his way out of office Bush W. gave the biggest cooperate pay-out to slime-bags in suits in U.S. history. Not even the mafia made that much off the backs of good, working people. Thus, it nearly broke our nation’s back, perhaps it will be remembered as the preverbal straw on the camel’s back. Now President Obama has his hands tied by the likes of the Tea Partiers and labeled a nazi for having the balls to push a social healthcare system like God-Bless-’em Cuba has had for several decades! In the end vote for the man or woman that promises to outlaw lobbying in Washington!

    • Bubbles, like the tech and housing ones, take years to develop and result directly from over speculation by private sector financial markets. By speculating, the markets drive up prices and drive up company perceived values, above their actual worth.

      Eventually, the good old law of supply and demand kicks in to deflate the bubble and the economy suffers.

      That is what happened with both the tech and housing bubbles.

      Presidents can’t and don’t control that. They never have. In fact, its not even their job. That job belongs to the independent Federal Reserve. Its supposed to defuse bubbles before they grow big enough to hurt the economy.

      Obviously, in 2001 and 2008, the Federal Reserve failed.

      George W. did not cause the tech bubble collapse. He reacted to it through two major across-the-board tax cuts in 2001 and 2003.

      If there were a single program that a president shut down in his first year in office that caused 3.5 million Americans to lose their jobs that year, as happened in 2001, then the American people would loudly demand that president be impeach and summarily thrown out of office by the end of his second year.

  2. Terrific post. Would that those who enjoy audiences of millions took a few moments away from the make up mirror to do some thoughtful analysis like you have here.

    Good stuff.

    • Thank you very much for your kind remarks. This is completely original research using data downloaded from the BLS. I thought I did a decent job with this one. It is nice you think so to.

  3. Very concise and informative post. progressive bloggers have been echoing those same feelings for the past 30 years. it is refreshing to know that people like you are delivering the facts.

    Mr Progress

    • Wow… thanks for your very kind comments.

      Since writing this I’ve come to believe there is more going on here than meets the eye.

      Looking at some real GDP data an economist has recently pointed out related to the housing bubble collapse and combining that with renewed signs of life in the U.S. economy, I believe there may be a fundamental new property of economics at work here.

      I’m tentatively calling it “The Set-Point Theory of Economics” and that will be the subject of my next article.

      I hope you have a chance to review that one and comment.

      And don’t be shy about telling me I’m full of BS when I am. I’ve been wrong before and I will be again. I’m not afraid to admit when I’m wrong.

      Besides… I can always delete the article and pretend I never wrote it. LOL!!!!

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