Easily pleased

Since when is adding not enough jobs to keep pace with labor force growth good news?

The economy, having lost 1.9 million private-sector jobs since January 2001, added last month half as many jobs as had been expected, and fewer jobs than we need to add every month to absorb the growth in the size of the labor force. The President, and his flatterers, profess satisfaction.

Notice that only a pessmist could be pleased by such a bad number; an optimist would have exptected better. Who was it who coined the phrase “The soft bigotry of low expectations”?

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com