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Texas is the sponge soaking up Obama’s unemployment mess

Texas is the sponge soaking up Obama’s unemployment mess

There is a very interesting blog post at Political Math (via Instapundit) explaining why the attacks on Rick Perry based on Texas’ job growth will fail.

The attack on Perry, which the Axelrod/Plouffe message machine is pushing, is that Texas still has unemployment near the national average, any job growth is the result of lucky circumstances and the energy sector, and the jobs are low wage.  The author, who says he is not a Rick Perry fan, debunks those arguments with data.

Short version, Texas is absorbing huge numbers of workers from other states which keeps both the unemployment rate (lower than the national average, but still above 8.0%) and median wage (28th out of 50) in the middle of the pack.  Using a variety of measurements, the author concludes that Texas job growth under Perry has been impressive, even when the energy sector is excluded.

One can argue that Perry had very little to do with the job situation in Texas, but such a person should be probably prepare themselves for the consequences of that line of reasoning. If Rick Perry had nothing to do with creating jobs in Texas, than why does Obama have something to do with creating jobs anywhere? And why would someone advocate any sort of “job creating” policies if policies don’t seem to matter in when it comes to the decade long governor of Texas? In short, it seems to me that this line of reasoning, in addition to sounding desperate and partisan, hogties its adherents into a position where they are simultaneously saying that government doesn’t create jobs while arguing for a set of policies where government will create jobs.

Or, to an uncharitable eye, it seem they are saying “Policies create jobs when they are policies I like. They don’t create jobs when they are policies I dislike.”

The one metric I didn’t see in the post is what the U.S. unemployment rate would look like if Texas did not grow jobs and absorb workers from other states.  That would be interesting.

The case for Rick Perry in the current environment seems to be growing.  Just like the jobs in Texas.


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Seems to me Obama owes Rick Perry and Scot Walker, Wisconsin Governor, a huge thank you for keeping the national unemployment figure below 10%.

Yeah I know the 9.1 figure is from ‘cooked books’ but the real picture is becoming harder and harder to conceal.

The repudiation of the Midwestern model has played out most dramatically in Wisconsin, where government unions were recognized in 1959. On the streets of Madison—a small city dominated by state government and a giant state university—liberals demonstrated against Gov. Scott Walker’s reforms. Ludicrously, they depicted public employees as an oppressed proletariat and they proved ready to break the law with violence in the streets and casuistry in the courts.

As I stated yeasterday, Rick Perry is going to steamroll the GOP field. Rasmussen now has him up 11 points over Romney and 16 points over Bachmann. Once Palin drops the act and finally endorses him, it will be a cake walk.

Consder this: California, with its high unemployment rate, lost most 170,000 people last year. It’s population is decreasing, not increasing. Compare that with the estimated 5,000 per month increase in the Texas population, just from people moving from other states. In the last ten years, the Texas population increased by over 5 million.

To keep unemployment at the current 8% in Texas has been no easy feat. Not when people have been migrating to Texas, looking for jobs, in great numbers for the last two years. Remember, these are people who don’t have jobs in their former states. That means also to keep the unemployment rate at 8%, taking into account the new residents, Texas has to create 4,600 jobs a month to provide for the other 92%.

There was a saying during the last recession that applied to Texas: last in, first out, meaning that Texas felt the recession less than the rest of the nation. And housing, while taking less money in cost, gives more value.

It is being said that Texas is only creating minimum wage jobs, yet the median income for Houston is $50,577. compared to Brooklyn @ $42,932 and Boston, $53,751. But just try to buy a new home of 2,000 sq. ft. in Boston for $135,000. Can’t be done.

    Captain Obvious in reply to retire05. | August 17, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    Very true, TX has one of the highest if not the highest average wage to cost of living ratios in the country.

    Even if it turned out to be true that ALL the new jobs are minimum wage jobs… those are still better than no jobs. And isn’t it obvious that economies recover incrementally? That job growth would occur at low wage levels before high wage jobs begin to recover? TX is doing this right.

I guess they have to go after Perry on his jobs record, because the jobs record more or less insulates him against the other attacks they want to level against him. For instance, they want to claim that he’s some kind of whacko religious nutjob. One response to that line of “argument” would be to point out that, whatever his views on religion (or whatever subject), the people of Texas are hardly suffering for it. To the contrary, the state has been doing great over the last 10 years since Perry has been governor. In fact, whatever personal attack they want to make, he can always answer by pointing to his record and saying, either it’s NOT TRUE (that I’m a stupid hick, e.g.), or it’s NOT A DISQUALIFICATION, since, despite the assertion, I nevertheless managed to create hundreds of thousands of jobs in Texas.

This is the difference between a Rick Perry and a Christine O’Donnell. O’Donnell got attacked, but didn’t have any kind of record with which she could answer the attacks. Even Palin was vulnerable on this front, because she had only been Alaska’s governor for a couple of years and Alaska’s such a small and seemingly idiosyncratic state. It’ll be a lot harder to make any kind of personal attack stick unless the Dems can figure out a way to impugn Perry’s record as governor.

    beloved2 in reply to Conrad. | August 17, 2011 at 12:54 pm
    excerpted “…On Friday David Axelrod argued that Perry’s record of job creation in Texas was not what it seemed. Yes, Texas has created more jobs over the last decade, while Perry has been governor, than any other state. For several of those years, in fact, it has created more jobs that all the other states combined. But, Axelrod insisted, Perry should not get any credit for that accomplishment.

    After all, Texas is an oil-producing state. In fact, it is the largest oil and gas producer in the country. And, yes, Texas also benefits from the presence of large military installations. So it was more or less inevitable that Texas, with its oil production and military installations, would add jobs and enjoy strong economic growth during the past decade. Just like California.

    California? Yes, California is the third largest oil and gas producing state, right behind Texas and Alaska.

    California is also host to some of the nation’s largest military installations. There are, in fact, 32 military bases in California, including Edwards AFB, Travis AFB, Vandenberg AFB, Camp Pendleton, the Presidio of Monterey, Fort Irwin, and the San Diego and Coronado naval bases, the largest naval installations on the west coast. By contrast, there are only 15 military installations in Texas.

    California is also home to some of the largest aerospace and high-tech contractors in the nation. Rockwell International, Lockheed, and Northrop, major defense contractors, are all located in southern California.

    What California lacks is the kind of political leadership that will attract new business. Economic growth in California — one can hardly call it “growth” — has been stagnant or worse over the past decade. In 2008-2009 GDP growth in the state was minus 2.2%. Along with a stagnant economy comes high unemployment. In June 2011, the states’s unemployment rate stood at 11.8%. That same month the unemployment rate in Texas was 8.2%, well below the national average of 9.2%.

    Over the past decade California’s economy has been the mirror image of that of Texas. In April 2011, California ranked last among the 50 states in job creation. In one month alone, it lost more than 11,000 jobs. During that same time period, Texas led the country in job creation, as it has done for years.

    Over the last decade Texas has also been the nation’s top exporting state. Obama says he wants to double U.S. exports over the next five years. There is not much evidence that he is going to succeed. But in Texas, with exports increasing at 26.7%, exports are more than doubling every four years.

    That’s partly because many of California’s entrepreneurial businesses have fled to Texas, where Austin has become a major center of high-tech industry. Other businesses, such as Comerica, have abandoned the high-tax states of the north and northeast. When Comerica relocated to Dallas, it left its name on Tiger stadium, but that’s about all it left in Detroit.

    As Governor of Texas, Rick Perry helped to create a tax and regulatory environment that would attract new business to the state and allow businesses already there to flourish. Passage of robust tort reform laws — laws which Obama has done everything possible to defeat at the national level — has attracted thousands of physicians and other professionals to Texas.

    With its zero income tax, Texas has been attractive to both working adults and to retirees. Its regulatory policies have encouraged oil and gas drilling, including the use of hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” to remove previously untapped resources in the massive Barnett Shale and Eagle Glen fields.

    The result of all this has been greater prosperity for everyone in the state. No, Mr. Axelrod, it was not just luck that brought about a decade of prosperity in the state of Texas. It was the leadership of Rick Perry and the passage of conservative tax and regulatory policies. It is no accident that Texas is in the catbird seat while California is in the dumpster.

    Had Gov. Perry’s policies of tax and regulatory reform been adopted ten years ago at the national level, and had they been maintained and expanded during the Obama administration, America as a whole would enjoy a similar level of economic growth and job creation. It’s time to put Texas-style leadership to work in Washington. Maybe then we can look back ten years from now and find ourselves with a prosperous economy, with rising incomes, mounting exports, and jobs for all who want to work.

    Jeffrey Folks is the author of many books and articles on American culture and politics….”

There seems to be a concerted effort out there to establish that Perry and Bachman want to institute a christian Theocracy. And there are already ‘true believers’ to this view out on twitter on #tcot and #p2. The BIG LIE told often is alive and well.

Perry is getting further and further from being electable in my mind. First, he backtracked on the gay marriage/states rights issue. Now he is calling a fiscal policy he disagrees with treasonous, and essentially threatens a US official who is a proponent of that position? That’s pretty unacceptable.

    retire05 in reply to Awing1. | August 16, 2011 at 8:04 pm

    Perry has never swerved from his stand on gay marriage. He said that if that is what other states want, that is their choice. You know, that whole 10th Amendment thing?

    And what would you call a Q-3? Do you think throwing this nation into runaway inflation is a good thing? Threatens a US official? How so? Just because you don’t understand Texas saying, you don’t have to expose your lack of being informed.

He originally did say it was a state’s choice, then he backtracked and said he would support a constitutional amendment banning it.

I would call a third round of quantitative easing a bad policy choice, even harmful to the US economy, but I would never suggest that those who advocate it are only doing so because they actively want to destroy the country. Treason requires an intention to make war with the United States, while at the same time owing allegiance to the country, this is why it is a capital offense. There’s a huge difference between disagreeing with ones policy and ascribing the most heinous of intentions to those that advocate an opposing policy.

Stating “I don’t know what y’all would do to (Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke) in Iowa, but we would treat him pretty ugly down in Texas” and claiming his action would nearly amount to treason, together seem like a pretty serious threat. Again, considering the punishment for treason is death, maybe you’re not threatened by death, but most people are.

If stating an opposing fiscal policy amounts to treason is a saying in Texas that means something else, I suggest the people of Texas get back to speaking English.

    retire05 in reply to Awing1. | August 16, 2011 at 10:18 pm

    Do you not understand the difference between the current Constitution as now written, including the 10th Amendment, and having Congress issue a Constitutional amendment that has to be radified by a majority of the states?

    If you listen to Perry’s statement, he at first said “treacherous” and changed it to “traitorous.” But if you think that Obama is not set out to “transform” this nation, you have your head in the sand. And another QE is, in my book, both treacherous and treasonous.

    And how cloistered are you? In Texas, as in most of the South, when kids are acting up, parents tell them to stop acting so ugly. Ugly means out of control. Maybe if people didn’t act like all Southerners are just illiterate hicks, and learned a little bit about the culture (like coffee regular in New York) we would have less division in this nation. Treating a person “pretty ugly” is NOT a death threat. Jeeze, man, where are you from?

      Awing1 in reply to retire05. | August 16, 2011 at 10:58 pm

      Of course I understand the difference between the two, how exactly is that relevant? You have to connect points in order to make a valid argument. For instance:
      Perry argued that gay marriage should be a state issue, not a federal one.
      Perry also argued that he would support a constitutional amendment that would take away the ability of individual states to decide the issue.
      Arguing that something should be a state issue and that the federal government should take away the ability of individual states to decide the issue is contradictory
      Therefore, Perry has made contradictory statements

      See how the statements flow together nicely, and connect to each other at the end? That’s what we call in logic a “valid argument”.

      I’m not sure exactly where Obama came into the conversation, and Perry corrected ‘treacherous’ to ‘treasonous’, not ‘traitorous’, but that’s not particularly relevant. The short term benefits to the economy of quantitative easing is fairly well established. There is considerable disagreement as to the long term effects, but there are plenty of very bright people who believe the long term negative effects are far outweighed by the short term benefits during an economic recession. If Bernanke were to initiate a third round of quantitative easing, he almost certainly would be basing such a decision on these people’s arguments. If you or Perry have solid evidence that Bernanke actually doesn’t agree with these people and a QE3 by him is because he wants to harm the US, by all means present it, otherwise you’re just making extremely serious and dangerous accusations.

      If you read my argument on why I believe Perry’s statement is a threat to Bernanke, you’ll see it involves the totality of the statement, not just the portion about getting “ugly” with the Fed Chairman. I know I’ve told you this at least a half dozen times before, but if you’re going to try to debate with someone, you cannot just argue against an otherwise out of context portion. Nonetheless, you’re argument doesn’t evoke much confidence that this wasn’t a threat. So Perry is saying people in Texas would get “out of control” with Bernanke? Particularly in combination with the earlier argument that his actions would be treasonous, that’s still pretty threatening.

        retire05 in reply to Awing1. | August 16, 2011 at 11:45 pm

        Thanks for correcting my spelling. How does it feel to be perfect?

        You think QE works? How’s QE1 and QE2 working out? See that unemployment number crashing? How about the GDP? Do you think it is looking good?

        And are you so stupid that “getting out of control” to you has to involve violence? Did you not read the name of this very blog? LEGAL Insurrection.

          Awing1 in reply to retire05. | August 17, 2011 at 1:43 am

          Wow, even in this little of a reply you managed to get so much wrong.

          I didn’t correct your spelling, I corrected your misquote, ‘traitorous’ wasn’t a misspelled word on your part, it was the wrong word, the correct one was ‘treasonous’. I’m not perfect, I spelled Buffett’s name wrong in the comment section a few posts back, but I actually appreciate being corrected when I’m wrong because at the end of the day I’d rather be informed than blindly agreed with.

          I didn’t say QE works, in fact I explicitly said I think it’s damaging in the long run. It is however well established that QE helps an economy in the short run. That’s why unemployment dipped and production increased during the first two rounds of QE. Stop trying to put words in my mouth, if you can’t argue with what I actually say, give up.

          And finally, you again completely ignored an important piece of why what Perry said can be seen as a threat. Perry didn’t just say that if Bernanke initiated a QE3, Texans would treat him ‘ugly’ or, as you put it, ‘get out of control’ with him. Perry immediately followed that by stating Bernanke would be seen as treasonous. Now if someone says they’re going to ‘get ugly’ with me, AND they call my actions treasonous, I don’t think it at all unreasonable to view that as a threat. I’m not sure where the violence part came in, I’m guessing you’re just making things up in your head again.

          Captain Obvious in reply to retire05. | August 17, 2011 at 12:58 pm

          This is especially true given that treason is a very specific legal charge, for which the punishment is death.

          Captain Obvious in reply to retire05. | August 17, 2011 at 1:03 pm

          While QE may have worked short term once because IN GENERAL it’s a short term boost, I think it’s widely recognized that it would have diminishing returns at best… a third round IN CONTEXT of the previous two would likely have a very negative effect given that our debt holders have indicated they would view intentional devaluation of the dollar as tantamount to default… and markets would react accordingly.

BannedbytheGuardian | August 16, 2011 at 8:42 pm

Texas is very unique . It’s Libertarian wings are extreme from the polygamous sects that invade to the nuts that think Gardasil is a communist conspiracy.

Regarding the polygamous /”family ‘ sects it is said that measures such as non registration of an infant without father’s name has tampered the growth of these outfits.

I spent a few hours at Hotair trying to understand the Gardasil thing. Wow these “libertarians ” think they own their daughters’ body soul & future life . To object to n immunisation that can prevent HPV decades down the track is parent abuse. They argued that their wonderful parenting will ensure that their darling (one used that term )daughters will only have one clean sexual partner in future & forever1

Wow . How does Perry manage these people?A Miracle Worker!

    Please don’t be too quick to assume that new vaccines (or other drugs for that matter) that are being aggressively marketed to profit pharmaceutical companies necessarily are equivalent to old polio vaccines or tetanus shots, that the benefits necessarily outweigh the risks, that adequate information is in, or that parents who may have doubts about a vaccine that is still being monitored (dozens of deaths versus a low-risk cancer) are nutjobs who want to “control” their daughters’ bodies. Young adult women can obtain the vaccination themselves if they want to. More:

      BannedbytheGuardian in reply to janitor. | August 17, 2011 at 11:51 pm

      I do not have to assume anything . Fact is that Gardasil has been n development & testing in Australia for 15-20 years.

      Whole populations of schoolgirls have had it & no deaths at all.

      Parental especially father’s ownership of their daughters’ cervixes is creepy .

      Surprise you there that other nations are ahead of the USa in public health ?

      BannedbytheGuardian in reply to janitor. | August 18, 2011 at 12:10 am

      Gardasil prevents genital warts. Yikes – girls would prefer to be dead than have them.

      You Janitor are anti-girl. You want them to suffer.
        “…What is the association between HPV infection and cancer?

        Persistent HPV infections are now recognized as the cause of essentially all cervical cancers. It was estimated that, in 2010, about 12,000 women in the United States would be diagnosed with this type of cancer and more than 4,000 would die from it. Cervical cancer is diagnosed in nearly half a million women each year worldwide, claiming a quarter of a million lives annually.

        HPVs also cause some cancers of the anus, vulva, vagina, and penis (2). In addition, oral HPV infection causes some cancers of the oropharynx (the middle part of the throat, including the soft palate, the base of the tongue, and the tonsils) (2, 3)…”
        Gardasil vaccine protects against the HPV virus that causes
        essentially all cervical cancer. So it is more than unsightly warts, sir.

alanwillingham | August 16, 2011 at 8:55 pm

There appears to be evidence that many businesses are relocating to Texas for a more favorable tax environment, and bringing those jobs with them.

That would necessarily mean that if a business takes 1,000 jobs from California and relocates those same 1,000 jobs to Texas, no new jobs are created.

Let’s have an honest breakdown of what is really going on. If indeed new businesses are creating new jobs, then let’s give the Texas business friendly policies credit.

If all that is happening is moving $10 Bucks from your left pocket to your right pocket, it doesn’t actually make you any richer.

    The good profesor provided you with a link at the very beginning of this entry. Try reading it.

    Captain Obvious in reply to alanwillingham. | August 17, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    If it costs a business $20/hour including benefit and regulatory compliance to pay a $10/hour employee in CA, but only $15/hour in TX to pay the same $10/hour, then the amount being moved from the business owner’s left pocket to his right is not the same, is it? So even if, for the sake of argument, all the jobs in TX would have still existed in their origin states had they not moved (instead of the likely scenario many would have just been eliminated), there still exists a net boon to the private sector.

      Captain, the thing to remember is that facts are like Kryptonite to Copperheads.

      Agreed, Because of the favorable Texas business environment, the companies can prosper and expand and create MORE NEW jobs.
      “…Some of the departures(from California) are substantial. Petco, the pet supplies retailer, is moving from San Diego and expanding its headquarters to San Antonio, Texas. The company will add 400 jobs in Texas and spend $5 million on the larger headquarters.

      And Medtronic Diabetes is laying off 464 people in Northridge and transferring 300 customer service jobs to Texas.

      “California is such fertile ground that representatives for economic development agencies are visiting companies to dissect our high taxes, extreme regulatory environment and other expenses to show annual savings of between 20% and 40% after an out-of-state move,” Vranich says…”

BannedbytheGuardian | August 16, 2011 at 10:01 pm


How can you keep on moving
unless you migrate too.

They tell you to keep on moving
but migrate you must not do.

The only reason I am moving
is to move to a new location
& find myself a home.

Thanks to Ru Cooder ‘s Depression songs LP.

[…] UPDATE: Legal Insurrection inspired a round of updated Bumper Stickers I saw in Austin while living there 12 yrs… […]

Before people get too excited Governor Perry:

Rick Perry’s Bad Obama Style Medicine

This is not the only issue, but let’s start there.

[…] Madrid UK Police Exploited Social Media Intel To Head off Rioting At Olympic Site BLOGS & STUFF Legal Insurrection: Texas Is The Sponge Soaking Up Obama’s Unemployment Mess The POH Diaries: The True Frontrunner – Rick Perry, Of Course Michelle Malkin: Rick […]

As I understand it, most of the job creation has to do with Texas’ natural resources and have little to do with Perry’s job creation abilities. And about 40% are low wage ($7.00 an hour or less); it used to be that these kind of jobs were considered entry level (for kids), but are now considered staples for adults.

    Conrad in reply to tadcf. | August 17, 2011 at 10:56 am

    I don’t think that’s right. First, the federal minimum wage is $7.25, so it seems highly unlikely that any, let alone 40%, of the new jobs are at $7/hour. Second, I think there was some misinformation floating around (Krugman?) about the supposed low wages. As I understand it, he was saying “x percent of the jobs pay only y dollars/hour,” whereas the data he was referring to only applied to HOURLY WAGE jobs. A lot the jobs were salaried positions (which are generally higher-paying) and were not included in whatever percentage he was citing.

    Also, the cost of living is a LOT lower in places like Texas, so it’s only natural the prevailing wages would be lower than in the Northeast or California, for example.

    Finally, it’s a bit disingenuous to take swipes at the quality of jobs being created in Texas when Obama or, frankly, any other governor in the country would KILL for the kind of jobs record Perry can point to Texas. It’s an obvious example of sour grapes. Whatever the jobs are like in Texas, it beats unemployment, which is all Obama has proven successful in creating.

    SDN in reply to tadcf. | August 17, 2011 at 11:09 pm

    Except that Perry, unlike Obama, has the good sense to let those resources be developed.

workingclass artist | August 17, 2011 at 6:56 pm

Perry’s answer as I understand it to most social issues is pretty simple. It would be up to the states either way…not some judge. It’s for the people to decide.

The whole Gardisl thing has been way overblown. I’m a native Texan and parents had an opt out. TTC has been spun as well. Texas needs the rural roads and Perry tried to do it without the federal strings and state taxes, the tolls would have paid back the companies for building them. Ranchers pitched a fit and it was repealed.
Most important thing is that when Texans made their case Perry listened and responded. As we see it Perry has made few mistakes in a long record.
That is what matters most to us down here…

He’s been an effective Governor,Lt. Governor, Agriculture Commissioner,and Legislator (Budget Pitbull)
Down here a politician like Perry wins cause he does his job for Texas the way Texans like it and we are not a pretty or easy citizenry to please but Business gets done and that is #1 in Texas. Basic Reagan Conservatism is how we roll.

Perry has always been conservative in a common sense way which is why Phil Graham recruited him for the GOP. Down here Democrats call him Paul Ryan on steroids. If he could move the Federal Government out of the way to boost the American economy as we do here in Texas what’s bad about that? Native Texans understand that as it makes sense to us always has…must be why we’re currently being flooded with people. Fine with us but I hope these new folks don’t ridicule us for having common sense and putting it to work. We like who we are and Gov. Perry is a 5th generation Texan and has done his bit on the team very well. Down here we aren’t ruled by anyone but we appreciate effective leadership and that must be why he’s the longest serving governor of an ornery but wonderful state.

Great blog here…first time to comment.