The LA Times has an article on the unemployment rate: "The unemployment rate spiked to 6.1% in August, much higher than anticipated and the first time in five years that it has topped 6%, the Labor Department reported today.The economy has shed jobs for eight straight months, the data showed, with the losses averaging 76,000 per month since the beginning of the year. The economy must create about 100,000 jobs a month just to keep pace with population growth."
Calculated Risk has a post on this with graphs: "Nonfarm payrolls decreased by 84,000 in August.The unemployment rate has risen to 6.1 percent.Year over year employment is now negative (fewer American were employed in Aug 2008 than in Aug 2007). This is a very weak report - more to come."
Paul Krugman blogs on the "Un-recession": "I can’t wait to hear how the White House tries to spin today’s employment report. But to be fair, this is an odd slowdown, by historical norms: no clear decline in GDP, no months of 6-digit job losses. Instead, the economy is being slowly ground down."
The question for me is why given the shitty condition of the economy, the endangered condition of our social safety net, the total mismanagement of foreign and domestic policy by the current administration, all heaped on top of the success of the 2006 mid-term elections, our lauded-to-the-stars presidential ticket is dropping in the polls, unable to retain the convention bounce? Why can't they get traction in this mess? Carville taught them what to concentrate on 16 years ago
It's the economy, stupid.