White House Explains Where the Jobs Went

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Last month the White House launched its White Board video series, which featured the newly appointed Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors Austan Goolsbee attempting to explain why Congress should let the Bush-era tax cuts expire.

Now, Goolsbee is back on camera for another White Board lecture, and this time, he tries to explain exactly what’s happened to the job market during the previous three years.

“You’ve probably been hearing a lot of back and forth about the economy, and it can be hard to sift through, so what I wanted to do today on the White Board is take a step back and just talk about where we’ve been over the last three years in the U.S. economy,” he says at the beginning of the video.

Goolsbee uses a colorful bar graph to show how many jobs were lost each year between September 2007 and September 2010. He shows that 4 million jobs were lost in the six months before Obama took office, which he refers to as a “catastrophic” trend. He then makes the case that we are significantly better off now, thanks to the Obama administration’s ambitious stimulus package, which gave tax relief to more than 100 million Americans and offered more than a dozen tax cuts to small businesses.

“We’ve now had nine straight months of private sector job growth in this country,” Goolsbee says. “But the president is the first to say it’s not enough, and we need to do more, we need to get that growth rate up.”

As a result, the administration is looking to spend more money on our country’s infrastructure and provide more tax incentives for companies that do business at home.

In many ways, this new video series attempts to capitalize on the administration’s strengths. During the campaign, Obama’s team was often praised for being more media savvy than opponents and having a good grasp of using new media to get its message across. At the same time, one of the main reasons that Goolsbee was promoted to chairman of the economic council is because he’s seen as a great communicator.  Combine that with the fact that several members of Obama’s cabinet, including the president himself, have worked as professors in the past, and it’s not hard to see the allure of producing regular video lectures.

The question now though is whether it will have much of an effect on voters.

In a very real sense, the White House needs to go viral.

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