So I've frankly grown a wee bit tired of having to argue with GOP numbskulls about why 8.3% sucks, but is far better than what might have been. I mean, if you had a 104 degree fever, and then it went down to 101 degrees, you'd still be sick, but clearly you'd be heading in the right direction, right?
Still though, arguments that require hypothetical thinking and anything more complex than 2+2=4 seem lost on those whose knuckles are dragging on the ground. So let's keep it simple:
If Bush had been president, unemployment today would be 27%.
The last month of the Bush Presidency, 741,000 jobs were lost (source). What if that trend had continued? What if we'd lost 741,000 jobs a month, every month since then?
Well, unemployment right now would be 27%. And by October, 2024, not a single American would have a job. Zero.
Now, if this seems extreme, consider the following -- job losses were accelerating before January 2009. Arguably, the 741K loss would have been even worse, had Bush's policies continued (translation = the f*$*!& stimulus worked).
But again, let's keep it simple. If Bush's January 2009 performance had continued every month since then, unemployment would be 27%. Or we would've descended into anarchy (probably with cannibalism) and it would've been even higher.
So yeah, 8.3% sucks. But at least it ain't 27%.
(Note: Source for stats here is the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Note 2: While I do actually have a real econ background, this is a back of the envelope quickie analysis, so I welcome corrections, edits, etc. Note 3: Obviously I'm being a bit simplistic and cheeky here, but...I do think it's a good trend extrapolation to have in your pocket when the non-cheeky GOP simpletons slam Obama, without accounting for the rapidly imploding economy Bush left him).