Only happy when it rains

Please to allow me to continue the rant I started before Christmas.

So the results of a survey about the employment outlook for 2009 in Sacramento were released on Wednesday. Check out the headlines from the Google News feed:

Super…Great…Grand. Did I mention that we get it? No one is saying that these are the days, but come on. Report different.

How’s about highlighting the last the sentence of all of those articles.

  • 16% of businesses surveyed say they plan to hire in the first quarter of 2009.
  • On the bright side, insurance companies, health care networks, commodity distributors, agricultural and technical businesses and customer service call centers expect to grow in the first three months of 2009.

As my good friend, Jeffrey Goines, always says: “There’s no right, there’s no wrong, there’s only popular opinion.

Don’t get him started on germs…

Author: RonTopofIt

RonTopofIt is a complex personality, as are most of the small breed of modern day renaissance millionaires. He wishes more people were like him and yet believes that it takes all kinds. You've met RonTopofIt many times, you just don't remember him.

12 thoughts on “Only happy when it rains”

  1. Thanks for mentioning the good news at the end of the article, it often gets lost in the shuffle. I’m very glad to hear that call centers will be hiring. If there’s ever a job to get you to value every other job you’ve ever had, it’s working at a call center. Changes your whole outlook.


  2. So do you think the the bad news is being overreported, or that good news should be overreported to compensate for the otherwise grim situation we’re in?


  3. I’d say the former, Dan. I’m more of a solution guy so these articles wear on me. Is there anything we can do to help correct this grim situation? This survey really got me though. You have 20% planning to lay off and 16% planning on hiring. What were we talking about again?


  4. ? Since those stats you cite come from the very articles with gloomy headlines…it looks like what you’re complaining about is negative headlines. Headlines are supposed to get to the main gist of the article, which is that more layoffs are due. If we were comparing apples to apples, a 4 percent spread between companies that are hiring and laying off is pretty grin (a 3 percent difference in retail sales from last year has sent that sector into a tailspin).

    But we’re not talking apples to apples here. The companies who are laying off may be companies that are bigger or are more desirable to work for than the ones hiring. Or vice versa. But Sacramento is in an especially bad situation with its dependence on the state as an employer, which is in a hiring freeze/layoff mode.

    It’s mostly bad news all around. And as depressing as that is, the point can’t be driven across enough in order to get people to buckle down to weather the depression (what to do is pretty obvious…don’t blow your money on things you don’t need).


  5. I am disgusted that as a state WORKER (and yes, we do work) we are forced to suffer along with everyone else who works in the private sector. It’s NOT FAIR.
    That’s not what we signed up for!
    I hope that Obama fixes things so we don’t have to worry about things and can get back to putting together a nice potluck for Marla who is leaving us for a cushy job over at the Board of Equalization.


  6. I’m no economic guru, Dan, but I don’t think “don’t blow your money on things you don’t need” is necessarily the main takeaway of the current economic crisis. I think “don’t spend money you don’t have” is more to the point. I share RTOI’s view on this. If people hear all this bad news and no good news, and so they sit on money they otherwise have no reason not to spend, won’t that make this worse? If you have the cash, and you spend it on a Starter jacket that you don’t need, that actually helps us out of a recession, wouldn’t it? That’s the point of cutting taxes and writing stimulus checks — allow people/companies to buy/spend more.

    However, “don’t blow your money on things you don’t need” is probably a good axiom for personal finance no matter the state of the economy.


  7. The problem is, if people feel economically insecure, they don’t spend the tax savings, they use it to pay down debt or sock it away. Which is a nice fiscally conservative strategy but it doesn’t make the economy hum like spending does. Tax cuts and budget-balancing was the strategy used by the Hoover white house in 1929-1932, it only made things worse. Rather than just sending people checks, using that money to execute public-works projects both gave people jobs (and kept them busy) and also paychecks (which they spent.) So people actually worked for the money, instead of just getting a free stimulus check in the mail.

    It also required materials, which meant money for businesses that provided those materials. It also left us with useful things like bridges, colleges, dams, roads, electrical distribution networks, and other real physical stuff.


  8. hmm…left out a bit–the public works projects I mentioned were part of the “New Deal” that FDR introduced. It required some deficit spending, but worked to stimulate the economy and rebuild the country.


  9. It also left us with useful things like bridges, colleges, dams, roads, electrical distribution networks, and other real physical stuff.

    Ah- the good ol’ days, when you could make a dam, road, college, casino, etc., without getting an environmental impact report. Even starting a dam now would take two years (if not more) of “studies” and “reports” and “public comment” before any construction got started.

    And the US has been deficit spending like crazy for 8+ years now– I don’t see much stimulation of the economy, so there can’t be any link there.


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