Joblessness drops in Michigan north, up elsewhere

The state's seasonally unadjusted unemployment rates have dropped in the north while rising slightly in other regions.
AP Wire
Jun 28, 2013


The Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget released the May figures Thursday, showing the statewide unemployment rate at 8.4 percent. The rate was 8.2 percent in April and 8.9 percent in May 2012.

The populous Detroit-area job market accounts for about half the state's workforce, and its unemployment rate was little changed. It was 9 percent in May, compared with 8.9 percent in April.

The northeastern Lower Peninsula reported a 1 percentage point drop, from 11.8 percent to 10.8 percent. Rates are down slightly in the northwestern Lower Peninsula and Upper Peninsula.

Ottawa County's jobless rate rose from 5.9 percent in April to 6.6 percent in May.

The Muskegon County and four-county Grand Rapids labor markets both rose by six-tenths of a percent.



At least once in a while it would be helpful if the Trib viewed the glass as half-full rather than half-empty under a Republican governor.

Anyone reading this story would have no clue that since 2009 Michigan has had the sixth-highest job growth in the nation at 6.4 percent. The would also be deprived of the fact that the unemployment rate peaked under Democrat Jennifer Granholm at 14.2%, and that the unemployment rate was 11% when Governor Rick Snyder took office in January, 2011.

The glass really is half-full, especially considering the job-killing policies of the current regime in Washington.

Mystic Michael

Yeah sure, Vlad. Because as we all know, the Republican/Tea Party policies of allowing hundreds of billions in unproductive corporate welfare to be siphoned out of the Treasury, while enabling hundreds of billions more in corporate tax loopholes to prevent the Treasury from being suitably replenished, while also expediting the export of jobs & capital to feudal Third World countries and untaxed offshore bank accounts respectively - then crying "Poverty!" when it comes time to make desperately-needed investments in education & public infrastructure has functioned as such a magnificent engine of job growth already. Right?


Is this meant to be a reply to my post? In all of the gratuitous droppings you dumped here, I see not a single refutation of the employment facts I cited.

In case you haven't noticed, the giant sucking sound you hear from the Treasury is Obama's borrowing $17 trillion to cover his profligate spending (not including the $100 million the King and Queen will spend on their trip to Africa in search of a birth certificate).


Don't hold your breathe Vlad, the Mystic is one that will grace these pages with his, ah mist, then vanish without dialogue as it stains his linen to talk with the common folks. We are just not worthy of his debate. Oops, I dared to call him out again. Sorry back to the dungeons I go!


Skid marks and tracks are not easy to explain in a public forum . . . .

Mystic Michael

You are the one who made the bogus point about "...the job-killing policies of the current regime in Washington", then let it just hang there - as if it were somehow self-evident, and didn't deserve any qualification or substantiation. True to form, you never allow the facts to get in the way of your far-right ideology.

The actual fact is that a successful modern economy is a complex interaction between public investment (i.e. the interstate highway system, DARPA research & development that midwifed the Internet, etc.) and private initiative. Even far-right Republican politicians tend to recognize this axiom - yet they are determined to snuff out each and every economic development and job-creating proposal that comes from the White House - for purely partisan reasons: Because they can't stand to see Obama get the credit.

Right-wing Republicans routinely decry the inefficiency and stupidity of government...then as soon as they get elected to public office, they make it into a self-fulfilling prophecy. Voters see the gridlock and the bickering; they see the failure of the economic development & the job creation proposals - so many of them give up on government altogether: WHICH IS EXACTLY WHAT THE REPUBLICANS WANT. Because they benefit from the voters' failure to hold Republicans themselves accountable.

It is the most cynical, destructive game ever played. If anything, I fault Obama for his failure to play hardball with them, for failure to call them out on it more aggressively, and to make them pay a price for their subterfuge & sabotage - for they surely deserve it. But I don't fault him for failing to get the economy going again - for he has tried, over & over again, to reason with an unruly lot that simply will not be reasoned with.


Instead of grandiose lecturing and blaming Republicans for everything, as usual, it might be helpful to look at some facts. The labor participation rate has shrunk precipitously under Obama, so that it is at its lowest rate in decades - somewhere between 8 and 9.5 million people no longer looking for work. Are they all there because of Obama's policies? Of course not - many are retiring baby boomers; others left the workforce to go to school (and amass huge amounts of debt due to the government taking over the loan program and profiting to the tune of $ 33.5 billion in 2013 But that doesn't come near to explaining the collapse of the labor force under Obama. His policies of piling on significant regulations, especially in the energy field, have caused huge job losses. The Keystone Pipeline is just one example of his job killing policies. His shutting down oil and natural gas production on federal lands is another. His over-regulation of energy production in the Gulf yet another. Over-regulation of the fishery in the Northeast, etc.

His amnesty policy is killing jobs for Americans. Extension of unemployment insurance, and huge expansion of food stamps and Social Security Disability may have humanitarian bases, but there is no question that apart from adding significantly to the deficit, they discouraged large numbers of the labor force from seeking employment.

And of course, the 500 lb gorilla is taxes, the threats Obama has made to raise taxes, and the increased taxes under Obamacare, which is causing employers to limit employment to part time and not to hire new employees.

Any rational President, who was a leader, would look at the impact of his policies on the people who depend on him and decide "I believe we need a cleaner environment, I believe in global warming, even though the models have been proven wrong to date, but I need to get people jobs and the economy moving now, and deal with those other issues after we are back on track." "I believe in amnesty for illegals, but it's not going to pass the Congress and it's hurting my people." "I believe in universal health care (or insurance), but I couldn't get single payer because many people in the country have a different vision than I do. I think they are wrong, but it's necessary to make changes in Obamacare to address the problems that were brought about when the Congressional democrats rammed through a monstrous piece of legislation that is deeply flawed - it is now a job killer.

But not Obama - he juts out his jaw and doubles down on the very policies that are and continue to kill jobs - and that's why I said what I did - it's self-evident to anyone who takes the time to consider it.

And yes, we have millions of college graduates, those off whom the government is profiting from student loans, unemployed and under-employed. So when Obama want to hire "Navigators" to assist people in understanding the huge complexities of Obamacare, does he specify they have attained a college degree? Oh no, he throws the money at SEIU, AFL-CIO, NAACP, and ACORN-like community organizers. Please spare me the holier than thou crap about Republicans being out for themselves and playing politics.


There are facts, and then there are facts. One would expect the jobless figures for Michigan to be heading south far quicker than they are. After all, isn't that the reason for becoming a Right-To-Work state? The explicit promise of RTW legislation is a booming economy - good jobs, good pay. But then facts get in the way and the very studies that show RTW does NOT improve the economic lives of workers come to fruition right here in Michigan.

The main reason Michigan is back on track really has very little to do with our governor, but can be directly attributed to the auto bailouts, both the temporary Bush bailout, and the more comprehensive Obama bailout that was designed to ensure a more viable long-term future for GM and Chrysler.

Days from bankruptcy, the bailout and the conditions imposed by the bailout allowed the companies to stay in business, return to profitability, saved thousands (million) of jobs.

I wonder what the rate of return will be with the investment into the California insurance exchange versus the $55+ million the House has spent on meaningless repeal votes, and the $400+ million spent on meaningless and ineffective TV ads alone by anti-Obamacare Republicans. But I suppose that is the Republican idea of job security.


What part of a drop in the unemployment rate from 11% when Snyder took office to 8.4 today is so difficult to understand? What leads you to conclude that the drop is not caused, in part, by Snyder's policies, including freedom of choice for workers? What leads you to conclude that the rate would be lower if that freedom of choice had not been enacted?

As far as the GM and Chrysler bailouts (at a loss of $20 Billion) think of how better off Michigan would be today if GM spent our taxpayer money here instead of overseas!

"While Obama's auto czars shuttered hundreds of small GM auto dealerships across the United States, the company is now aggressively opening new ones in China, with 600 new dealerships already planned by the end of this year and more in the offing. So much for skilled American dealership mechanics, parts managers, clerical staff -- not to mention the folks on the sales floor.

Even before the bailout, GM assembled 70 percent of its autos overseas and nearly two out of every three GM workers was employed outside the United States. Those numbers have not changed under the president's management, and for the Delphi workers, the outsourcing is even worse. Today, 95 percent of Delphi employees are overseas, compared with just 86 percent before the president took over the U.S. auto industry in an effort to save their jobs.

When you look under the hood of President Obama's auto bailout and take it for a test drive, you learn it's a lemon.


Not only has the unemployment rate dropped slowly but steadily since the auto bailout, the Michigan GDP - based on durable good manufacturing and the strong rebounding of the automotive industry - has been the 6th fastest in the nation, after years of decline. Nothing convoluted here - just connect the dots. Thank you President Obama!

RTW has nothing to with freedom of choice. There are plenty of Federal laws regarding unions that ensure freedom of choice. Actually, if you are concerned about freedom of choice, wouldn't it make more sense to not increase government intrusiveness into business and unions, and allow free markets and competition to flourish? Those workers who are opposed to unions can simply choose to apply at non-union businesses. Let business and unions duke it out!

Unprofitable dealerships in rural areas with small market base adding to distribution expenses being closed down is a darn shame, but when you are days from bankruptcy liquidation, that's the breaks. Every manufacturing consultant in the country will tell you the same thing - they need to go, stat.

Which brings me to Delphi. Delphi is hardly worthy of your advocacy. Delphi hijinks began in 2001 when they eliminated 11,500 jobs worldwide. Then hilarity ensued when they were subpoenaed by the SEC for "irregular accounting practices", which were disclosed in 2005 when they filed for bankruptcy and closed 24 plants.

2006 saw the selling off or closing of 21 out of 29 US plants. they additionally screwed their overseas plants, closing plants prematurely after receiving millions for employment guarantees. I guess this is your idea of a company who suffered terribly at the hands of the maniacal Obama, who forced them to tearfully terminate the employment of their valued employees.

I do appreciate your attempt at humor with your last sentence. It's a big improvement over your "moslem jihadist" comment....which, by the way, you never explained. It's probably not the best debate policy to offer statements that you are not prepared to substantiate when challenged.


Right to choose not to join a union as opposed to laws requiring union membership - not freedom of choice. Right to choose to kill the unborn vs. laws that criminalize murder - freedom of choice - I think your logic needs some fine tuning.

Add to that the laws in many states that permit a woman to sue and receive money damages under their tort laws for negligently killing an unborn child (say in a car accident) while at the same time permitting abortion. Logically, you would be opposed to such laws - am I correct?


I won't argue that my logic, along with most everything else, needs a little fine tuning now and then. But I don't see how it's illogical to personally think people should not be denied the right to sue, even though it's not something I would turn to as a first recourse. I also don't think women should be denied choices as to what they can or can not do with their bodies/health, although I am not an advocate for abortion.

Generally, I don't presume to make decisions as to how others should live, or how others should think. Which brings me to your declarations that you are not a big fan of government telling you what to do. So then why are you a part of the promotion of forcing society to conform to your beliefs? Why not just enjoy the freedoms you are granted and leave the rest of us to our own devices?

Speaking of screeds, you might find this interesting. Scroll down and read the comments - 150 years later, the debate continues, on all levels. http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes...


The point: If a fetus is not a child, a human being, such that it can be plucked from a woman's body without fear of being accused of murder, how can it be treated as a child if the woman is hit by a drunk driver and the fetus dies, for the purposes of compensating the woman for the loss of a child?

I would absolutely love to enjoy the freedoms I have been granted by God and by the Constitution and leave you and folks who believe as you do to your own devices; unfortunately politicians in general, and liberal and progressive politicians in particular, are engaged in aggressive and unending attempts to proscribe those rights through legislation, through bureaucratic over-regulation, through unnecessary taxation, and through judicial activism. Many of my rights have already been limited or eliminated, so I'm afraid I can't just be a good boy and sit quietly as the country lurches toward more big government and more socialism.

The link was interesting - seems like each of the generals has his own defenders and critics. My favorite comment, which would appear to apply to much of the country today: "I don't know why Professor Guelzo chose to leave it out but it's important to note that one of the major factors in the post-war denigration of Longstreet was that he became that most hated of things among southern whites: a Republican."


I'm delighted you chose a comment regarding one of my favorites - Gen James Longstreet. He was a fascinating person, both during and after the war. Another fave is Brig Gen Joshua Chamberlain, who defended Little Round Top with a heroic bayonet charge - down the hill. Gettysburg was expecting over a million visitors this week - I think I'll stay home.

Yes - once upon a time the Republicans nobly supported and advocated for women's rights and women's suffrage. That's before they decided it was necessary to erode those rights with myriads of legislation specifically designed to humiliate, denigrate, and demean women. Did you know that the number of anti-women bills has sky-rocketed since 2011? Talk about "aggressive and unending attempts to proscribe through legislation"!!

There's even a War on Human Fetuses in Food (Oklahoma bill that bans the use of aborted human fetuses in food -(I'll never look at that hamburger the same again), the War on Girl Scouts (I was a scout, and I want to warn you that it was ugly, leaning how to knit, whittle, grow herbs, and make pot holders). And the War on Divorce, where the proposals encourage women in abusive marriages to remember why they got married in the first place, buck up, and shut up already.

So I'm right there with you, lamenting rights limited or eliminated. I wonder if your righteousness about fetal death due to accidents extends to the many cases of fetal death due to the stabbing or beating of the mother? Think of the rights you have lost, and think of the rights victims of gun violence have lost with the Bush bill that immunizes arms manufacturers from damage suits.

And talk about judicial activism! I guess the Gang of 5 were hypnotized and persuaded by Paul Weyrich's apotheosis that the fewer voters the better for Republicans with their gutting of the VRA. Just more lurching towards big government and more socialism.

But I digress, this being a piece on joblessness in Michigan.

Wingmaster must be dizzy after that regurgitation of the many Dem talking points you just spit up!

There, now that I got your attention maybe you can get back on the job topic.

Vlad, no more shine objects please. I would like her to further elaborate her position on the jobs before she spins off into a tangent about her Herbie the love bug days of her "yute"!


I feel so badly for you that someone out there forced you to read this regurgitation of all the demented and sick things our elected officials are doing out there, literally as we speak. My condolences.

It is true that Vlad, with an expert's touch, knows which pigtails to pull, and I, with an enthusiasm worthy of human pathology research, take the bait.

Once again, you're a real yout, yabbering about the VDub days of my yute. Are you upset that I didn't write a limerick about you?


Na, just like to dip your pigtails in ink from time to time.

Have a great 4th of July and try to pause a moment during your festivities and give thanks for what our amazing founders gave us!


There once was a patriot called Wingmaster,
Who fancied himself a political forecaster.

He professed a love for God, Country, Family,
Guns, Hunting, and the Constitution, most definitely.

But his comments online were a disaster!

Be sure to fly the flag!


Your far better at Lanering then Limericking

Please don't let your flag touch the ground when you pull it from the back of your closet to fly tomorrow.

And now promise me you will watch both clips from two of my favorite axe men!

and this one from a patriot bloodbrother:


Have heard both - listened again. Jimi is timeless, Ted - well, not so much. Loved CSF back in the day, tho.....

"Your far better at Lanering then Limericking" - I dare you to say that 3 x fast, in about 2 hours.


Let me add the latest job-killer policy: EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) is charging the automaker BMW, and the national retailer Dollar General, with discrimination, and violation of the 1964 Civil Rights Act for using criminal background checks before hiring employees.


Another fiasco to blame on Obama? Even though it's been around for ages (60's) and has resolved hundreds of thousands of cases ever since. Even Clarence Thomas was intimately involved, having been Director appointed by Reagan (hopefully he was a wee bit more animated back then).

There are so many ways employers can discriminate. My personal bugaboo is sloth, having a background that was remarkably free of the common forms of discrimination except for a strong prejudice against laziness. Even now, I tend to give in to this form of discrimination. I hope this doesn't get out to the EEOC...


Mystic Michael - Thank you for your refreshingly direct and concise summary of the nightmare that is the far-right rally cry. My only consolation is the knowledge that they may be over-playing their extreme agenda, thumbing their noses at the polls that indicate widespread and deep public disapproval of their antics.

Hopefully, the American public will not suffer fools, and wake up to the fact they are being bullied into an extreme far-right agenda that is against the best interest of the country and it's citizens, and the desecration of E Pluribus Unum.


The 'official' jobless rate does not reflect the true situation in Michigan. You are off the rate once your unemployment pay is up. So many people have dropped off that rate and still are unemployed and do not show up on there. It is probably closer to 20% in Michigan. Of course people who juggle numbers for a living pull the wool over the sheeples eyes and say 'put on these rose coloured glasses please'. If you believe these numbers, you quite obviously have not been looking for work recently.


Actually, I agree 100% - this regime in Washington has been fudging the unemployment numbers from the jump. If you have a beef, as I do, it's with the media who has turned a blind eye to the real tragedy that is represented by the phony numbers. Nonetheless, the numbers are manipulated across the board so Michigan is doing better under Snyder than it had been under the beauty queen, and our new right to work status will ensure that we keep improving,

I'm glad we can find common ground, for a change!


Lost all common ground there when you got to the (Dick) Snyder sentence. Right to work = right to be let go from work for ANY reason. It is a step backward for Michigan. It is not a good thing for anyone- except business owners. As the gap gets larger...


Pity - guess common ground is too much of a stretch for someone who apparently was blown away by the awesome economic record of closed shop democrat Governor Granholm.


don't have to diss me because I don't have your point of view, but I guess that is your only recourse. Sucks to be you.


I'm not sure how I "dissed" you when my original comment pointed out the huge disparity in unemployment between Granholm and Snyder, your response was to call Snyder "dick" while railing against right to work, and I merely pointed out that you must be "blown away" (Granholm's words) by her record.

Your recourse would be to explain why Granholm was such a success and how things have worsened under Snyder, which of course you are unable to do. Sucks to be blind to reality dude!


#1. My og comment was not a debate mein freund, just my opinion.
#2. That's his name.
#3. And there you go, you are out there throwing numbers at me bean counter. They mean nothing (as YOU ACTUALLY stated in your post), so you bait me with your assinine assumptions on me being 'blown away' (your words) over Granholm, as if you know me.
My post was not politically swayed to ANY 'side', unlike your much too obvious agenda on here.



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