Companies use fuzzy math in job claims; candidates still buy in

Companies use fuzzy math in job claims; candidates still buy in is one of the two stories that MichaelK really wanted me to look at. (Instead I jumped on The Occupied Wall Street Journal.)

Oil companies aren’t the only ones promising jobs if Washington gives them their way. A wide array of businesses are saying they can help solve the country’s unemployment crisis if only the government would roll back some regulations, approve their big mergers or lower their taxes.

Yet the industry often touts debatable jobs numbers. Mergers between big companies, for instance, tend to result in layoffs rather than new positions overall. And a closer look shows that API’s ads exaggerate the effect that looser drilling policies would have on employment; more than half of its projected job growth would come between 2015 and 2030.

Nonetheless, some policymakers and presidential candidates have cited these statistics as they echo companies’ claims about creating jobs.

“We just learned today that if the federal government would pull back on all of the regulatory restrictions on American energy production, we could see 1.2 million jobs created in the United States,” Rep. Michele Bachmann (Minn.) said at a Sep. 7 Republican presidential debate.

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