Economic conditions are getting better, or so it would seem if you read today's Associated Press story at the ABCNews.com website titled "Weekly US Jobless Aid Applications Dip to 370,000." Yes, indeed, those many initiatives of President Barack Obama are finally kicking in. But you may be somewhat confused if you had also read last week's AP article on ABCNews.com. That was headlined "US Unemployment Aid Applications Stay at 370,000." How could the number "dip" to 370,000 if it were already at 370,000?
Every Thursday the U.S. Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration turns out a press release reporting the previous week's jobless claims. Today's release, as last week's release, revised the number of jobless claims reported earlier upward. Interestingly, every single press release issued this year revises the previous week's number upward. Talk about coincidences. Human error is understandable, but you'd think that at least once in a while they'd have to make a downward revision. Not in the Age of Obama.
The AP, ABCNews.com stories, however, don't mention DOL's constant revisions, which would provide necessary context for readers. Nor do other mainstream media outlets. They should.