The Small Story of 2012

This is the time of year to look back and reflect.  What happened in 2012?  A lot of things happened, and yet when we look at the political and economic situation it appears that almost nothing happened at all.  About US 1.6M jobs were added during the year, but growth (change in GDP) remains at a near-recession 2% or less.  Politically, the election produced the same President and Congress who remain mired in gridlock, currently unable to get out of the “Fiscal Cliff” trap of their own making.  Europe has gone from bad to somewhat worse, proving that austerity isn’t going to help anyone.

What should we make of this year?  Not much, really.  There was not a big story in politics or economics that is worth re-hashing.  But there is a small story that has not been told.  Where did those 1.6M jobs come from, anyway?

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