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Off The Editor’s Desk – 9-14-2016

Where have the jobs gone?

The nation’s workforce has changed since the banking system collapse of 2008 and with the release of August employment data, the Bureau of Labor Statistics provides a window into how the U.S. economy has shifted in the eight years from the last month before the failure.

 Our nation’s jobs have shifted from high-paying manufacturing jobs to lower-paying service-oriented positions.

Rick Manning, president of Americans for Limited Government, writes the following: “September of 2008 is the month that marked the freezing of the nation’s capital markets and the politically disastrous bank bailouts that helped sweep Barack Obama into the White House a few short weeks later.

The shift of the workforce toward a more service-oriented economy that had been occurring prior to September 2008 was exacerbated over the past eight years.

The number of non-farm employees producing goods dropped over the past eight years by 1.65 million workers, while the total number of workers increased by 7.135 million. The percentage of jobs in the goods producing sector of the economy dropped dramatically from comprising 15.5 percent of the overall private sector to a mere 13.5 percent today.

While the hits to the goods producing sector have been across the board, the manufacturing and mining/logging economy both suffered particularly hard losses and really have not come back. On the positive side, construction jobs had a more significant bounce back after large drops from the 2008 levels, but even construction remains at only about two-thirds of levels seen eight years ago.

On the flip side, the service sector has grown by more than 9.3 million jobs with the majority of the growth found in retail, education and health, leisure and hospitality and professional business sectors.

One stunning outlier in this analysis is that with all the talk about our nation’s STEM education and the need to import IT workers, the information sector is the only service sector to drop in number of jobs reported in the past eight years.”

I have an example in one area where service jobs are expanding. This one had to do with the (NOT) Affordable Health Care Act. The Department of Health and Human Services is spending some $63 million to hire Navigators to assist people in navigating, shopping and enrolling in the federally facilitated health marketplace.

Navigators are trained individuals and organizations, which will help consumers as they look for health coverage options and financial assistance through the Marketplace. Open enrollment for next year’s placement in Obama Care begins on November 1st. I remember a time when you would visit several insurance agents to find what was the best deal.

Of that $63 million, Wisconsin will get $1,338,306 in grants to fund the operation.

As of September 6th, Wisconsin Navigators that received awards include: The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System, Northwest Wisconsin Concentrated Employment Program, Inc. and the Forest County Potawatomi Community.

If we keep the Democratic Party in control of the White House, more product producing jobs will be lost. This is one more reason we need to change who is leading our country.

Thanks for reading!   ~Carlton