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Yesterday, I tweeted the quite surprising news that information graphics guru Edward Tufte will be joining the Recovery Independent Advisory Panel [edwardtufte.com], which aims to track and explain $787 billion in recovery stimulus funds in the US. I was convinced this news event had been given sufficient attention.

Little did I know. I just discovered the Obama campaign actually loves infographics so much, they recently have featured an infographic-style movie on their official website [barackobama.com]. While not being shockingly original, except of maybe the dramaturgical twist around the 0:38 mark, it nevertheless is nice to see those electoral campaign dollars at work in the area of (political) infographics. They even consider data graphs to be so persuasive that the public is invited to download the 'V' shaped job loss bar graph (PDF) as a Twitter icon.

Watch the movie below.



Interesting! As a Canadian, I'm not as wrapped up in US politics as many others, but after watching the video I would like to see the US #'s vs the rest of the world. Is the Canadian graph the same shape? Japan? EU? Is the US riding the same wave as the rest of the world?

Wed 10 Mar 2010 at 12:11 AM

Isn't the Y axis mislabled?

It's labeled as Job Loss but then has negative numbers. If so, it looks like Bush was adding tons of jobs and the Obama came along and job growth came to a grinding halt. =)

Wed 10 Mar 2010 at 3:06 AM

adam, i don't think it is mislabled per se. the y axis is change in amount of jobs and not job loss or gain. it's labeled differently at two different points in the video as "gaining jobs" and "losing jobs".

Wed 10 Mar 2010 at 12:16 PM

Obama read last week's article in the Economist.

Wed 10 Mar 2010 at 12:55 PM

Whether intentional or not, the Bush/Obama job chart is deceptive. The chart shows the monthly change in unemployment (or, the first derivative for you math types), not the actual number of unemployed. All the chart shows is that we're losing jobs at a slower rate. Unemployment has not, as indicated in the chart, returned to the rosier time of December 2007.

You can read how and why this is deceptive here.

Wed 10 Mar 2010 at 3:10 PM

Soquel by the Creek, your take on the graph in the link you provided is great, thanks.

Thu 11 Mar 2010 at 1:01 AM

it looks like Bush was adding tons of jobs and the Obama came along and job growth came to a grinding halt

Fri 12 Mar 2010 at 7:09 AM

This is DECEPTIVE. It shows monthly change, not total numbers. We've lost a lot but aren't GAINING any jobs. And we now have a nearly permanent class of underemployed and unemployed. We just aren't getting MORE of them.

Business creates jobs.
Government does not.
Government cannot.
Government is a cost.

Fri 26 Mar 2010 at 2:34 PM
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