Vermont’s private sector job growth rate ranking, under the Shumlin administration, is 33rd in the country. This seems to be a far cry from the
wonderful economic pronouncements that routinely issue forth from the Governor’s lips every time the state’s monthly unemployment numbers are published. As we’ve shown, repeatedly, the reason the unemployment rate is going down is not due to job growth, but to the reduction in the size of the work force – and we’re actually losing jobs month over month, and year over year.
It’s not just the ranking that’s relevant. The fact that Vermont’s job growth rate is well below the national average for the same timeframe is the face-slappingly painful point, so here it is: Nationally, the annual rate of growth (per the Bizjournals article) for the other 49 states in private sector jobs is 1.98%. Vermont’s rate? 1.39%. This means that Vermont’s job growth rate is roughly 30% less than the average of the other states.
We’re floundering. Vermont is significantly lower than the national average, which, during a recession, is already worse than it should be – yet Shumlin’s periodic trumpeting about Vermont’s low unemployment rate is all we hear from him. We don’t hear that the real numbers in the unemployment rate often mean month-over-month job losses, despite the rate going down. He’ll tout the rate’s reduction but remain perfectly silent regarding the reduction in the number of jobs. He’s actually celebrating the fact that Vermonters have fewer jobs.
So the Shumlin has two faces. It might seem to the casual observer that given the governor’s pronouncements on matters economic, his willingness to avoid the law in terms of implementing a single-payer system that will undoubtedly help him fulfill his Senatorial ambitions, and his personal actions where the Governor seems to care a lot less about what he does in the real world versus what he says in front of a microphone, well – the same observer might come to the conclusion that the biggest challenge Vermont’s Governor faces is the choice between which mouth of his two mouths he’s going to speak to us from today.