One of the most common complaints I received from liberals during President Obama's first term in office was that my commentary on how badly the economy was performing and how poorly the President was governing meant I was celebrating the decline.
They said I was rooting for failure.
Of course, at the depths of the Great Recession there wasn't a heck of a lot to celebrate. But I suspect the Leftists just wanted me to tell them everything was getting better because President Oceans Receding said they would.
Fast forward to this week, where Forbes released its annual Best States for Business rankings.
Virginia came in first. But North Carolina did pretty well:
Here is how Forbes wrote the profile:
With one of the highest net migration rates in the U.S., people have been flocking to North Carolina for the past decade. They are chasing jobs, but the unemployment rate is still high at 8.9% after being stuck above 10% for most of 2009 through 2011. North Carolina has the smallest union workforce in the U.S. in terms of percent of total employment. The resulting benefit is labor costs that are 19% below the national average—third lowest in the country.
It seems like this should be good news for people interested in getting North Carolinians back to work. A good ranking here might mean more jobs.
These are our old pals - the anonymous "recruiters" of Democratic candidates that really just specialize in Twitter spamming, personally attacking people, and peddling rumors.
So, naturally, they look at the Forbes ranking and focus on the lowest ranking.
These partisan hacks did attempt to address the good ranking.
At least they tried.
They had to mislead to do it, but they tried.
The Republicans took over the legislature after the 2010 election. If you're going to give credit to elected leaders for a good ranking, it's got to go to all of them.
But let's look at the Quality of Life ranking, because that's what the Leftists seem very concerned about -- although I bet if we had a #4 Quality of Life ranking and a #32 Business Climate ranking, they'd be focusing on that latter statistic.
Here's how Forbes determined Quality of Life:
Quality of life takes in to account poverty rates per the Bureau of Economic Analysis and crime rates from the FBI. Other factors include cost of living from Moody’s, school test performance from the Department of Education and the health of the people in the state per the United Health Foundation. We considered the culture and recreation opportunities in the state per an index created by Bert Sperling, as part of our annual Best Places for Business. We factored in the mean temperature in the state as a proxy for the weather. Lastly, we included the number of top-ranked four-year colleges in the state from Forbes’ annual college rankings.
According to Forbes' analysis, North Carolina's poverty rate is 18.0%. That is about 3 points higher than the national average.
But with an unemployment higher than the national average, you can see why this would be the case. When people are out of work, it's more likely they're going to fall into poverty.
Personally, I've never been one to focus a lot on these rankings. But I do wonder whether Democrats and Leftists in NC are, themselves, "rooting for failure"now.
Of course, it makes sense politically. If things improve, their narrative is weakened and their economic ideology undermined.