Political Animal


October 05, 2012 9:29 AM BLS Truthers

By Ed Kilgore

You expect this sort of thing from the more distant regions of the fever swamps, but not from an American business titan:

Former General Electric Co. (GE) Chief Executive Officer Jack Welch accused the Obama administration on Twitter of manipulating today’s employment data for political advantage.
“Unbelievable jobs numbers..these Chicago guys will do anything..can’t debate so change numbers,” Welch wrote in a message posted immediately after the U.S. Labor Department reported that the economy added 114,000 jobs last month, pushing the unemployment rate to 7.8 percent, the lowest since President Barack Obama took office in January 2009.
Roseanne Badowski, Welch’s secretary, said the retired CEO is the only one with access to the Twitter account and is now unavailable for the rest of the day in meetings.

Yeah, we’ve all used the “I said something stupid so from now on I’m in meetings” bit.

But I gather this insane BLS Truther stuff is spreading pretty widely through the conservative chattering classes. I guess they are so angry at the premature killing of their buzz over Wednesday night that it has to be a conspiracy.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.


  • Ronald on October 05, 2012 9:33 AM:

    (in my best nelson from the simpsons voice:)

    ha ha.

  • Steve LaBonne on October 05, 2012 9:35 AM:

    Figures it would be this asshole, who played a major role in hollowing out our manufacturing economy. May he rot in hell.

  • T2 on October 05, 2012 9:37 AM:

    you gotta laugh...these guys (GOP) are amazing. But think about it and you realize that they bet the farm on America losing. Their whole game plan was to continue to obstruct economic growth as their singular tool to defeat Obama. Now, what is it about Obama that is different from any other Democrat president....I digress..
    And yet here we are, Consumer Confidence rising, Housing showing life, the Stock Market in a very strong run, unemployment finally under 8 % . The GOP bet against the resilience of the American people and thanks to Citizens United, they placed a whopper of a bet. And they are losing. One can only wonder where they go from here?

  • Bo on October 05, 2012 9:42 AM:

    I used to have some respect for Welch. I don't anymore. After he retired, it seems that he got "Cheneyed".
    The real irony here is that he probably buys The MittWit's "magic tax plan" hook, line and sinker.

  • c u n d gulag on October 05, 2012 9:43 AM:

    Everything is a conspiracy against Conservatives.

    Every new day is both the biggest conspiracy against them, and their greatest failure:
    They weren't able to to "conserve" yesterday, and it "progressed" to today.



  • Don Elliott on October 05, 2012 9:46 AM:

    Who is Jack Welch?

  • Zinsky on October 05, 2012 9:49 AM:

    One of the hallmarks of any cult is that their leaders always tell them that everyone is lying to them.

  • beejeez on October 05, 2012 9:52 AM:

    No worries. It's not like Jack Welch runs one of the three major news networks.

  • BudP on October 05, 2012 9:52 AM:

    RE: Who is Jack Welch?
    He is a representative from the lollipop guild

  • Al on October 05, 2012 9:53 AM:

    I don't think the statistics are a lie, but the 114K new jobs are probably liberals who held off accepting a job at Burger King until just before the election, to make things look better than they are.

  • beejeez on October 05, 2012 9:54 AM:

    'Scuse me, I guess there's more than 3 now. I'm old.

  • Gummo on October 05, 2012 9:54 AM:

    It's your basic conservative projection again -- changing official government job numbers for political gain is exactly what they'd do, so they assume everyone would.

  • KK on October 05, 2012 9:57 AM:

    I work in it, they are off and running, insisting it too convenient to be true. No shock though, they are all basically looney here.

  • sjw on October 05, 2012 10:00 AM:

    The House of Representatives ought to hold immediate hearings on the politicization of the BLS. That Obama would stoop this low is just unbelievable.

  • stormskies on October 05, 2012 10:02 AM:

    Yep, and that spinning red light on the Drudge Report just exploded at this news, and the like of David "I am not a used corporate condom", Brian "I am not a corporate cum slut" Williams, Chuck Todd, Wolf Blizter, and all the rest of the corporate media who ejaculated by saying pathological liar Romney was the 'winner' of the debate ... never mind he lied 27 times in just 38 minutes .. that's a 'winner' to them.... were all just seen running as fast as they can, elbowing each other out of the way, to the local 7/11 store because their DEPENDS ARE SUDDENLY TO FULL ........

  • PTate in MN on October 05, 2012 10:03 AM:

    Meanwhile Romney is badmouthing the gains as "not a real recovery." He must know that the conservative policies he advocates are the cause of our terrible economy (which is why he has to mask them.)

    And I'll second Steve LaBonne's comment. Welch is as repellent a perpetrator of destructive business practices as one can find.

    These scumbags. These horrid human beings. The economy gets some good news and their response is 1) it isn't true; 2) even if it is true, it isn't enough.

  • FlipYrWhig on October 05, 2012 10:03 AM:

    Also, the polling is skewed. And, for that matter, I have this girlfriend, she's from Canada, and maybe you never met her but she is totally hot. Despite appearances, everything's going my way.

  • Peter C on October 05, 2012 10:05 AM:

    Called it!

  • Jeremy B. on October 05, 2012 10:08 AM:

    Who would know better about how to manipulate figures for personal short-term profit than a CEO? Welch's little diatribe screams projection.

  • clio on October 05, 2012 10:09 AM:

    Jack Welch is 77 or 78 this year, and looks every day of it. It's
    likely that his judgment is not what it was.

  • stormskies on October 05, 2012 10:11 AM:

    And least any of us forgot Jack Walsh was in charge of NBC and it's 'news' during the Bush/ Gore election when Florida went Gore being declared the winner there to changing that to Bush.

    Before it could even be verified by the actual Bush count of votes Walsh ordered Tom Brokaw to call it for Bush anyway. When Brokaw was confronted with this fact he fucking excuse was "Well, he signs my checks".

    And there you have it in a nutshell about the nature of our corporate media. It should be remembered too that it was Walsh he first changed the corporate policy regarding the News departments that corporations like GE own. Before he changed it the policy used to be reporting the news with no regard towards the interests of the corporations that owned the news. Walsh came along and changed that saying that the profits of the corporations came first.

    And since that time look what has happened to the nature of the corporate media. So we end up with creeps like Brain Williams being paid 15 million a year to do the bidding of the corporations themselves. This is why the corporate cum slut called Williams refused to even report on the fact the GE pain no federal income taxes last year. Refused.

    Speaks for itself ........

  • Ron Byers on October 05, 2012 10:14 AM:

    This is funny, but based on what I have been witnessing in the market I am surprised it stayed above 8% this long. I know that in my part of the world, a part of the company where the economy is still sluggish, construction is warming up.

  • Hue and Cry on October 05, 2012 10:16 AM:

    Welch was criticized on Bloomberg Television "In the Loop with Betty Lou" for that comment being way over the top. It was said by one of the contributors that the job growth that we have seen in the past 12 months hasn't been seen since 1996.
    Today we have the lowest unemployment rate in 3 years and is considered a top story, a stunning development and a shocker.
    Some of the readings are surprising--wages raised, for example. Consensus is this is great news for the president. Much excitement expressed on Bloomberg"s Market Makers segment.
    The revision to the August jobs numbers is a good thing and is affecting the market today in a positive way. The equity market is enthused.
    Consensus is things are not as bad as was thought. They also adddressed Welch's remarks as a conspiracy theory and one contributor said he trusts the Bureau of Labor Statistic much more than even the corporate quarterly reports and numbers that companies put out!

    Brad DeLong, Professor of Economics at the University of California at Berkeley, was featured --and totally dismissed the possibilty of anyone cooking the BLS numbers--not since the Nixon administration has that been possible.
    He also stated that total numbers reveal that there are 160,000 more people at work than we thought an hour ago! And likey the labor market is in better shape than we thought. And he suspects the housing market is also in better shape than last month's reports.

    Market Makers hosts are just about ready to talk about Mitt Romeny's flip flops on Wall Street matters after the break.

  • POed Lib on October 05, 2012 10:22 AM:

    How many people did fucking Jack the Job Killer fire over the years?

  • DrBB on October 05, 2012 10:23 AM:

    Welch clues us in on another conspiracy of collusion between Obama and the Librul Mainstream Media! Oh wait... he IS the mainstream media.

  • T2 on October 05, 2012 10:24 AM:

    if anyone should be complaining about "manipulation" it is Obama...it seems that the July and August numbers were WAY undercounted...keeping the rate high when it could probably have been lower during the nominating conventions.

  • berttheclock on October 05, 2012 10:27 AM:

    Jack Welsh and his wife wrote an article defending "corporations are people" in their continued support of Romney. In that piece, Welsh blasted Elizabeth Warren, who had said "people laugh and dance and cry". He said people in corporations do the same. Toxic waste created by GE is laid at the feet of Welsh. He is toxic waste.

  • DrBB on October 05, 2012 10:28 AM:

    The Two Stages of Conservative Grief

    Stage I: Denial
    "It's a fiendish librulmediaconspiracy I tell ya!"

    Stage II: Acceptance

    "Actually, it's all true, but it's the result of policies favored by our guy. Romney gets the credit!"

    I expect we'll move on to phase II sometime later today.

  • mudwall jackson on October 05, 2012 10:32 AM:

    blame the media. blame the pollsters. blame the statisticians.

    their games losers play.

  • mudwall jackson on October 05, 2012 10:35 AM:

    they're games losers play.

    i should learn to proof before i post

  • dweb on October 05, 2012 10:41 AM:

    It's easy to understand, because it is what they would do if they were in power. See WMD truthiness as evidence

  • Kathryn on October 05, 2012 10:47 AM:

    Would someone please explain to me the labor statistic number of 114,000 job increase and the household job increase number of 800,000 + I 've read about in Salon and on the Atlantic Wire?

    Since I remember job increases in the range of 114,000 in previous months not resulting in dramatic decrease in unemployment, what makes the difference? Anybody?

  • AndThenThere'sThat on October 05, 2012 10:49 AM:

    Honestly, I'd be skeptical too if I was in their shoes. Unemployment dropping below 8% just before an election does appear mighty convenient. Of course, I'm coming from the experience of watching the other side raise terror alerts just prior to an election. Then again, the Department of Homeland Security was created by and used for Republicans whereas the Bureau of Labor Statistics would be much harder to manipulate. I guess if the head of BLS resigns and then writes a book saying there was an effort by the administration to lower unemployment numbers before the election republicans would have their proof. Until then you hypocritical f#@k wads, STFU.

    In his book The Test of Our Times: America Under Siege...and How We Can Be Safe Again, Ridge says his resignation was due to an effort by senior Bush administration officials to raise the nation's terror alert level in the days before the 2004 presidential vote.

  • doc on October 05, 2012 10:49 AM:

    shut up and go away Jack. You ripped the country off as GE pays no taxes for too long and we are tired of you. Go count all your money and STFU.

  • Steve P on October 05, 2012 11:17 AM:

    Jack Welch is the Robert Duvall character from "Network", but without the charisma,unless you mistake money for personality. His current problem is that he thinks he's the Ned Beatty character. It's like seeing Beatty's monologue being delivered by the Six Flags gnome.
    BTW, when do we alter Chayevsky's bio to include "seer"?

  • Brian on October 05, 2012 11:31 AM:

    Al, no, they were Republicans in the meth trade -they had to do some hiring.

  • bigtuna on October 05, 2012 11:42 AM:

    Hey Jack. The markets deemed GE stock to be 20 -30 cents more valuable after the jobs numbers came out. SO, did wall street also conspire with the BLS? What do you know that the street doesn't Jack? Or, wait, I know - the marxist-islamic keynan market conspired with the Wall Street and the BLS ...

    Between WElch and lehrer, I am starting to thing that some folks should quietly retire and be quiet.

  • lmhk on October 05, 2012 11:44 AM:

    Yet another example of too much corporate involvement in governing and government...much less public perception therein.

  • Brian on October 05, 2012 11:45 AM:

    It's just like the nut-job spin on the polls being rigged... spin it if it's not favorable to your narrative.

  • paul on October 05, 2012 11:56 AM:

    Neutron Jack does know a fair amount about causing people to become unemployed, not so much about employment.

  • Nick on October 05, 2012 11:58 AM:

    Hue & Cry: Thank you for posting that! Good to hear ... I suspect or at least hope that the 'Welchers' are pissing in the wind with this routine and I'm confident the headlines will be all to the good.

  • T2 on October 05, 2012 12:06 PM:

    if the report had come in with 50k new jobs and unemployment rose to 8.4%, you wouldn't be hearing Obama complain about a "fix" for Romney. He'd be saying it is "disappointing and we need to do better". Nor would you be hearing the GOP complain about faulty stats.
    There's nothing wrong with this report except the fact that it shows things are getting better and the GOP has gambled that it would not. IF the next report the day before the Election shows the rate back at 8% - the GOPers will spend millions on ads against Obama and never once mention a conspiracy to raise the rate right before the election.

  • Quaker in a Basement on October 05, 2012 12:35 PM:

    So this morning we have a new entry in the list of things Not To Be Trusted. Government jobs reports now join journalists, scientists, public school teachers, poors, blahs, 47 percenters, and women of child-bearing age as completely unreliable.

  • 9ice on October 05, 2012 1:11 PM:

    2 things.

    1) Unemployment dropped below 8% because July and August numbers were revised to show a LOT more jobs were created than earlier reported. Somethng in the range of an extra 100k jobs.

    2) The next jobs report comes out Nov 2nd. That is exactly 4 days before the election. There's a great chance that it will probably have a greater effect than this one. If more people enter the workforce, it might make the unemployment rate go back up, even if we had a substantial amount of jobs added. If not, it might drop even further, so, frends, get ready for more accusations of "fixes" from the right.

  • MuddyLee on October 06, 2012 10:46 AM:

    Dear Jack Welch: I will be looking into reducing if not eliminating my purchases of GE products/services - because I prefer not to do business with crazy anti-American types like you and the Koch brothers. You're anti-American because you don't want to let the voters decide who the POTUS will be. I don't like it that you are trying to disenfranchise the people who voted for Obama in 2008 and who plan to vote for him again in 2012. So kiss my liberal redneck ass, Jack Welsh.