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No longer Bush’s Fault(tm), our man-boy President now blames…. wait for it….. technology instead of his economic policies for our stagnant economy.

President Obama explained to NBC News that the reason companies aren’t hiring is not because of his policies, it’s because the economy is so automated. … “There are some structural issues with our economy where a lot of businesses have learned to become much more efficient with a lot fewer workers. You see it when you go to a bank and you use an ATM, you don’t go to a bank teller, or you go to the airport and you’re using a kiosk instead of checking in at the gate.”

Oh brother.

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

UPDATE (from Dan):  Is it just me, or did Obama sound whiny when he blamed ATMs.  And wasn’t he supposed to be the hip politician who embraced new technology?  Don’t think this will play well with most Americans, may make him look as out of touch as some president who at least according to an inaccurate report in the New York Times was unfamiliar with a grocery store checkout scanner.

UP-UPDATE (from Bruce):  An ATM has responded to this scurrilous attack from Obama.

I didn’t do it.

President Obama says I’m to blame for high unemployment – part of the “structural” problems with the economy. Yes, he actually said my electronic brethren and I – who dispense cash and make lines move a little more quickly at the airport – are part of the reason 1.5 million fewer Americans have jobs than when the “stimulus” was enacted.

But before the president fingered us as responsible for job losses, he sought to take credit for the sluggish economy.

And even DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) said this morning that Democrats own the economy. I don’t. I’m just an ATM. I don’t own anything.



  1. Damned robots! They terkerjerbs!

    Or maybe not:

    At the dawn of the self-service banking age in 1985, for example, the United States had 60,000 automated teller machines and 485,000 bank tellers. In 2002, the United States had 352,000 ATMs – and 527,000 bank tellers.

    Comment by V the K — June 15, 2011 @ 10:00 am - June 15, 2011

  2. Curse President Bush, for driving (most) of those buggy whip makers out of business with his evil Model T!

    Comment by The_Livewire — June 15, 2011 @ 10:01 am - June 15, 2011

  3. What an economic-moron.

    This is what happens when someone with NO EXPERIENCE in the private sector wanders out of the ivory towers of the intelligentsia to a microphone. Then he doubles-down by giving a lame (and inaccurate) service-sector example while the real job and wealth creation potential of the US economy is in manufacturing and construction.

    It’s not that the banks have ATMs…it’s that they aren’t making small business loans for capital investment and new jobs.

    Comment by Ted B. (Charging Rhino) — June 15, 2011 @ 10:08 am - June 15, 2011

  4. Combine authoritarian corporate socialism (aka fascism) with neo-Luddism? Yes we can!

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — June 15, 2011 @ 10:27 am - June 15, 2011

  5. I had a left-leaning friend of mine this morning after hearing this colossally ignorant soundbite, “Sometimes I really wish this guy would play more golf. Lately, the more he talks, the less I like him.” Amen, brother.

    If il Douche’s administration a were golf course, it’d be the tree everyone pees on at the 7th hole.

    Comment by Eric in Chicago — June 15, 2011 @ 10:34 am - June 15, 2011

  6. I was thrilled that when our campus installed the new technology of an ATM and I didn’t have to go the antiquated way of cashing a check at the student union – – in 1984!

    My liberal Jewish grandfather now say he is more conservative now he reads the WSJ and find out facts about our economy rather than talking points. Maybe our President should follow suit and learn something.

    Comment by Jan Silverstein — June 15, 2011 @ 10:53 am - June 15, 2011

  7. Too much automation???? I’m betting there will be a tax proposal for that soon!!!!

    Comment by Sonicfrog — June 15, 2011 @ 10:54 am - June 15, 2011

  8. Hey, but at least Apple still makes the iPads here!

    Comment by Sonicfrog — June 15, 2011 @ 10:56 am - June 15, 2011

  9. The ATM’s service themselves daily, no human intervention required. ATM’s build, program, ship and install other ATM’s, no human intervention required. ATM’s communicate with financial institutions via their own network, no human intervention required. ATM’s produce their own paper for receipts, no human intervention required.

    Of course there were no ATM’s in service when President Bush was in office. That is why the unemployment rate was 5% +/-.

    I can certainly see why the liberals make fun of the silly things Mrs. Palin says.

    Comment by TnnsNE1 — June 15, 2011 @ 11:38 am - June 15, 2011

  10. To TnnsNE1: Clap. Clap. Clap. Clap. Clap.

    Comment by V the K — June 15, 2011 @ 11:41 am - June 15, 2011

  11. sure, he’d like us all to go back to pre industrial jobs, just as long as he can keep all is creature comforts and of course his blackberry.

    Comment by Leah — June 15, 2011 @ 11:43 am - June 15, 2011

  12. What a Luddite. the Prez needs to watch some Milton Friedman videos on The Pencil: and others….

    Comment by JP — June 15, 2011 @ 11:50 am - June 15, 2011

  13. I think this ATM statement sheds a lot of light on why Obama obscured his origins for so long – he’s really part of the Bush clan.

    Comment by Stosh2 — June 15, 2011 @ 11:51 am - June 15, 2011

  14. President Clueless opens his mouth without his teleprompter as &$%^ falls out; really, he’s not fooling anyone. Blaming President Bush no longer works. Blaming Speaker Boehner & Senator Mitch McConnell proved impotent. Now, he’s blaming ATM machines when it was new technology in 1982! Obama is scraping the bottom of the clogged toilet bowl. He better wash his hands before he campaigns again. Euw city.

    Comment by Sebastian Shaw — June 15, 2011 @ 11:54 am - June 15, 2011

  15. So, South Korea, with all it’s technology and automation is in the throes of massive unemployment while North Korea without that technology and automation is a workers paradise.

    Got it.

    Comment by TooMuchTime — June 15, 2011 @ 1:26 pm - June 15, 2011

  16. @TnnsNE1 — is that ATM-only network called SkyNet?

    Comment by TooMuchTime — June 15, 2011 @ 1:29 pm - June 15, 2011

  17. Sarah Palin never said anything remotely as stupid as ATMs are the cause of our unemployment problem.

    Comment by V the K — June 15, 2011 @ 3:24 pm - June 15, 2011

  18. And who’s the largest manufacturer of ATMs?


    There you have it. The conspiracy continues 7 years on.

    Comment by TGC — June 15, 2011 @ 3:42 pm - June 15, 2011

  19. Ok, a few things I just wanted to comment on here. North Korea is run by a dictator that makes his people refer to him as a god, writes all the books they read, and governs all forms of media they see. He also has a nasty habit of making people disappear that have a problem with it. There isn’t any freedom there. The country is poor, and the people are so underfed, they average 3″ shorter than anywhere else in the world.
    There are very few electronics or anything like clothing assembled in the US because the labor overseas is cheaper and dosen’t complain as much. And iPads were designed in USA, but are assembled in China.
    While robotics do replace some workers with robots, they are hardly the cause of massive unemployment. Most of that is from the cheap labor overseas that also dosen’t require things like life insurance or retirement plans. The more people want here, the more jobs will go overseas.

    Comment by Shawn — June 15, 2011 @ 8:06 pm - June 15, 2011

  20. When President Obama no longer can blame Bush, he blames ATM machines. What’s next? Is he going to blame the weather for the lost jobs? The AP has been trying to pin the weather on the “unexpectedly” bad job reports over the past several months since Obama’s been in office. None of them look serious. Obama is aging rather badly too.

    Comment by Sebastian Shaw — June 15, 2011 @ 8:41 pm - June 15, 2011

  21. c’mon really, it is Bush’s fault. He’s just using an ATM as a smokescreen

    Comment by Leslie — June 15, 2011 @ 9:14 pm - June 15, 2011

  22. Most of that is from the cheap labor overseas that also dosen’t require things like life insurance or retirement plans. The more people want here, the more jobs will go overseas.

    Partly true. American workers are more demanding, true, but they are also more productive and innovative than workers in other countries. This, coupled with transportation costs means up to a point, it still makes sense to manufacture in the USA.

    But. when you factor in that the USA has the highest or second highest corporate tax in the industrialized world, and factor in the massive over-regulation of industry by dozens of Federal bureaucracies, and factor in the litigious culture of lawsuits in the USA… these quickly overcome the US advantage in productivity and innovation.

    Comment by V the K — June 15, 2011 @ 9:27 pm - June 15, 2011

  23. Sorry for the length.

    Obama’s remarks may have been clumsy but he has a point.

    The issue at hand is not whether or not technology has cost jobs. It clearly has. The whole point of increasing productivity is to lower production costs (eliminate jobs).

    I have made my living for 30 years in technology so I know a little bit about this.

    For example, I’ve written software for postal sorters that can read, barcode, and sort 40,000 pieces an hour. One or two people can operate the machine. Net job cost: the number of people that can hand-sort 40,000 pieces/hour. Now that mail volumes are falling, these few machine operators need to be looking for new work, too.

    Other examples: equipment that identifies railcars at high-speed using RFID. Net cost: hundreds of yard workers that used to do this manually. Test systems I’ve built to test electronics assemblies at high speed; requires minimal job skills; no need for a tech handy with scopes, counters, and meters (it wasn’t long ago that people were encouraged to train in electronics).

    Another: compare modern electronics (e.g. cell phones) with older technology. Not only is assembly automated, there are fewer circuit packages (ICs) and the devices aren’t repairable. Even prototype designs can be completed on the engineer’s desk (FPGAs); no bench tech needed. How many draftsmen to we need anymore with Autocad, SolidWorks?

    Kindles, iPads, web browsers: less need for paper production, delivery, printers… electronic bills/payments lessen the need for mail delivery, paper, envelopes, etc.

    My point is not that technology, per se, is bad. We’ve benefited greatly from things like low-cost electronics that make high-end medical devices (defibrillators) cheap enough to be commonplace and some cool gizmos like iPads. And ATMs.

    The point I’m making is that we need to address the fact that millions of jobs have been lost. I think Obama said in the campaign that these jobs “aren’t coming back”. He’s right.

    New jobs have been created, of course, but there are fewer of them and many of them require higher intelligence (remember the bell curve – that’s not going away). What do you do with people who are perfectly capable factory workers but who can’t program a DVR (much less a complex computer application – if they could, I’d be making minimum wage).

    Our country has seen fundamental shifts before (e.g. the move from the farm to the factory) and the benefits became clear *over time* (the transition was certainly not smooth). We saw this again with the shift to a “service economy” which we’re still dealing with. The problem with “services” is that they can be off-shored and automated.

    I don’t think I’ve done a good job trying to make my point in this small space… the bottom line is that conservatives need to recognize the paradigm shift. All the usual stuff about low taxes and less regulation is fine but it doesn’t do anything for the people we usually don’t think about that see jobs their jobs disappear. Telling some middle-aged guy with an average IQ that he needs to retrain (with a bunch of kids who are also unemployed) to “learn computers” is idiotic. (IT jobs are going away, too.)

    People are rightfully afraid for their futures… and the GOP better get its arms around this fact. The Dems have years of practices exploiting people’s fears (real and imaginary) to get elected. Conservatives need to figure out how to address these fears with a concrete way back to prosperity. Babbling on about rates on capital gains sounds like BS to most people.

    I’m in my early 50s (so I’m a target in Medicare and SS reform – which I acknowledge are needed) and, yes, I’m scared spitless. I hope I can hold on long enough to retire (and that I can retire).

    Comment by SoCalRobert — June 15, 2011 @ 9:40 pm - June 15, 2011

  24. The benefits of keeping the UAW out of your auto company: Zero layoffs. Zero strikes. Zero health care premiums. Zero pay cuts.

    (But we need unions to protect worker rights!!!)

    Comment by V the K — June 16, 2011 @ 8:17 am - June 16, 2011

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