By Eric Boehlert and Jamison Foser
On the December 8 edition of Fox News' Hannity & Colmes, co-host Sean Hannity stated, "We had a good six and a half years with the economy." He later added: "We created 10 million new jobs, lower unemployment than in the last four decades' average." However, Hannity's claim that "10 million new jobs" have been created during the Bush administration is false. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the United States has gained 2,866,000 net private-sector jobs between 2001, when President George W. Bush took office, and the first quarter of 2008. (According to the BLS, the United States has experienced a net loss of private-sector jobs each month since the first quarter of 2008 ended in March.) In contrast with Bush, the United States gained 10,749,000 net private-sector jobs during President Clinton's first term in office, from 1993 through 1996. The U.S. gained 10,270,000 net private-sector jobs during his second term, from 1997 through 2000.
Additionally, Hannity's suggestion that the unemployment rate represents an accomplishment for Bush ignores the fact that the unemployment rate that Bush inherited from Clinton is lower than the average unemployment rate during the Bush years. According to the BLS, the average seasonally adjusted unemployment rate since 2001 is 5.2 percent, which is lower than the average rate for the 1990s, but higher than in 1997, 1998, 1999, and 2000 -- the last four years before Bush took office. According to the BLS, the unemployment rate was 6.7 percent in November, and the lowest annual unemployment rate under Bush was 4.6 percent in 2006 and 2007, all of which are higher than the unemployment rates in 1998, 1999, and 2000 (4.5 percent, 4.2 percent, and 4.0 percent, respectively)....(Click for remainder).
President-elect Barack Obama met with former Vice-President Al Gore in Chicago to discuss energy policy. Gore endorsed Obama in June
Posted by Bret Carbone at 8:42 AM
A Times Op-Ed columnist defended a religious group that worked tirelessly to trample on the rights of same-sex couples.
By Rick Jacobs
LA Times Op-Ed
Leading up to the Nov. 4 vote, the Courage Campaign Issues Committee bought time on cable television to air an advertisement against Proposition 8 entitled "Home Invasion." The hard-hitting ad depicted two arrogant Mormon missionaries invading the home of a lesbian couple, stripping them of their wedding rings and shredding their marriage license.
The dramatic visuals were designed to call attention to two issues: Proposition 8 sought to take away the legal rights of same-sex couples all across California, and members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints had contributed an enormous amount of money and manpower to the campaign.
Since the election, this ad has drawn the ire of religious groups and pundits across the country, including Times Op-Ed columnist Jonah Goldberg ("An ugly attack on Mormons," Dec. 3). But amid the uproar over the ad, there was very little discussion about something very important: the truth.
And the truth is very simple: Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints campaigned vigorously to strip rights from gays and lesbians. They contributed a staggering amount of money to pass Proposition 8 -- a figure estimated to be at least $20 million (and potentially much higher) to fund a fear-mongering, truth-distorting campaign whose only objective was to outlaw same-sex couples from getting a marriage license. Proposition 8 now threatens to invalidate the same-sex marriages already in existence, pending future rulings from the California Supreme Court. There is an old saying: Truth can't be libel....(Click for the remainder).
Posted by Bret Carbone at 7:05 AM