The Widdershins

The Recession That Isn’t…and Other News of the World

Posted on: February 5, 2023

Last Friday’s jobs report absolutely floored pundits and economists who have gloomily been predicting a recession for, oh, about a year now.

The employment picture started off 2023 on a stunningly strong note, with nonfarm payrolls posting their biggest gain since July 2022.

Nonfarm payrolls increased by 517,000 for January, above the Dow Jones estimate of 187,000 and December’s gain of 260,000, according to a Labor Department report Friday.


“Today’s jobs report is almost too good to be true,” wrote Julia Pollak, chief economist at ZipRecruiter. “Like $20 bills on the sidewalk and free lunches, falling inflation paired with falling unemployment is the stuff of economics fiction.”


Growth across a multitude of sectors helped propel the massive beat against the estimate.

Leisure and hospitality added 128,000 jobs to lead all sectors. Other significant gainers were professional and business services (82,000), government (74,000) and health care (58,000). Retail was up 30,000 and construction added 25,000.


“Today’s report is an echo of 2022′s surprisingly resilient job market, beating back recession fears,” said Daniel Zhao, lead economist for job review site Glassdoor. “The Fed has a New Year’s resolution to cool down the labor market, and so far, the labor market is pushing back.”

Jeff Cox, CNBC, February 3, 2023

As someone that’s tech-industry-adjacent, I’ve been tracking the big layoffs that have been happening over the past few months. Amazon, Microsoft, Google, Twitter – they’ve all been cutting back on their workforce, adding to the atmosphere of fear and anxiety around a potential recession. While I understand that inflation has been very worrisome, and we’re living in unprecedented times, CEOs and analysts have made a lot of mistakes in their economic predictions – and are still making them. They have bought into trickle-down economics for so long that they can’t see what’s right in front of their eyes. Democrats are, and have been for decades, the best stewards of the economy. Investing from the bottom up is the only way to build a strong and durable economy, not giving tax cuts to the super wealthy. The Biden/Harris administration has taken the approach of spending money where it’s needed to put us back on the map of being competitive with other superpowers, and it has worked. Go Joe and Kamala!

By the way, I’m afraid those tech industry titans are going to regret their layoffs. It is a lot riskier to lay off highly skilled tech workers (as Twitter has already found out) when there are literally two jobs for every job seeker, than it is to invest in your company and hire the people you need to get the work done.

As usual in these tumultuous times, this has been a very busy couple of weeks. Some of the other things I’ve been thinking about are:

The Chinese spy balloon and Drumpf’s fauxrage about it

The horrifying, but conversation-changing, death of Tyre Nichols

Mike Pence’s classified documents

Ukraine getting more long-range missiles from the US and determinedly fighting on

The Supreme Court, as usual, supporting violence against women

Record-breaking cold weather across the US

So many mass shootings already in 2023

What’s on your mind, Widdershins?

128 Responses to "The Recession That Isn’t…and Other News of the World"

Excellent article about the ongoing backlash against women’s rights in America. I’ve read “Backlash” by Susan Faludi, and it is phenomenal.

From one of the links above. This is appalling. A gun fetishist’s feelings triumph over the safety and lives of women and children. What part of “well-regulated” do they not understand?

the federal law prohibiting individuals from “possessing a firearm while under a domestic violence restraining order” is unconstitutional.

Under Judge Cory Wilson’s opinion in United States v. Rahimi, people with a history of violent abuse of their romantic partners or the partners’ children now have a Second Amendment right to own a gun, even if a court has determined that they are “a credible threat to the physical safety of such intimate partner or child.”

@3 – the Supreme Court strikes again.

Excellent post, MB. Very interested in your comments about employment.

Luna @3, That’s insane. I heard the case was overseen by Crazy Clarence.

I’m old enough to remember that song, “Up, Up & Away.” It was nice to listen to music when people could actually sing.

@6, That is a beautiful pigeon, annie! Such a fine-feathered crest.

Not-so-beautiful bird:

Annie, I agree about listening to people who can sing. And that pigeon looks like a cartoon character! I can’t believe a creature like that exists. Beautiful and exotic!

Luna – that bird, I can believe! Although it too is quite exotic. 🙂

I’m looking forward to Rachel’s show tonite. She’s interviewing Pomeratz, the guy who resigned as a prosecutor because Alvin Bragg was too chicken shit to prosecute Stump. His book should be interesting.

I’ve been so heads down, I didn’t even hear about the awful earthquakes in Turkey and Syria.

@10 – GAGal, I’m watching now! Sounds like a great show is on tap.

Wow! It seems like they were ready and approved to charge Drumpf with RIco charges in 2021, and then all of a sudden Cy Vance retired and the new guy backed off. Very strange indeed.

This interview on 60 minutes is even better. It’s worth the watch.


It was nice to listen to music when people could actually sing.

Yes, much more so than watching people in sparkly costumes and backup dancers voice vapid lyrics on stage to a repetitive beat beat beat. (yawn)

@13, WTH? Strange.

I just remembered that Ron Townson (the singer on the far left in the picture) of The Fifth Dimension, and his wife, lived near us in the early days of my marriage. He and his wife were very friendly.

Luna @15, LOL! Yeah, that tv show was probably lip synced, but they could sing. Ron T sang for several groups and his wife told me he did lots of studio singing for other people/groups.

Baby Heron is just at an awkward stage. Look at his feathers, he might turn out better looking when he’s full grown.

@18, annie, Oh, I was thinking of more contemporary acts!

Sadly, all too true.

I hope you’re all listening to or watching the SOTU. Biden is doing great. The QOP are being ignorant asses. In other words, business as usual!!

When Biden called the QOP out about targeting Social Security and Medicare, they started yelling! They tried to say it wasn’t true. He basically got them on the record that they wouldn’t target those programs, on national TeeVee! He really does know how to play them like a violin.

Biden was great and Marjorie T Green showed all her stupidity in it’s raging glory.

@22, pity the Republicans being on record won’t stop them from continuing plans to rip us off. But great tactics from Biden.

Luna @20, Haha! I agree with you there!

MB, Shadow & Luna, Yes, no class with that bunch. They’re revolting. I can hardly stand to watch them.

Do you think they can get him to resign?

There were no survivors in this skit. Everyone broke character at some point.

I agree the QOP’s promises aren’t worth anything, for sure! But public promises are a different story. They now face even heavier political peril if they try to go after Soc Sec and Medicare.

DYB – the fact that everyone was laughing made that skit a lot funnier 😀

Kyrsten Sinema was a hot mess last night. Sitting with the QOP, of course.

Sitting with the Republicans? She needs to be recalled from office.

Kyrsten Sinema was a hot mess last night…

—She looks like a hot mess. That poured in, bright yellow dress made sure everyone could spot her.

I guess she’s somewhat of an independent, she stood up for things that talked about women’s right to choose.

Glad at least that Sinema supports women’s bodily autonomy. Can’t afford to lose any more Senate votes on this issue.

@32 – She does, but…not enough to vote for a filibuster carve-out to get legislation passed to protect it.

MSNBC was just talking about, ‘Dark Brandon’

Cool memes made up for Joe Biden.

@34, I needed that explanation about Dark Brandon, though I don’t even get the original Brandon term.

Whoo! Looks like Mike Pence has been subpoenaed by Jack Smith. I hope he tells the truth.

Should we take bets on how many appeals Pence will make to avoid testifying? Maybe he’ll claim executive privilege. But then he didn’t dispute the election results, so maybe he’ll comply.

@39, that’s adorable. The little guy thinks he’s moving the treadmill!

Here’s another exercising doggo:

@41, that dog’s having such fun!

Yes, I’m watching lots of silly animal tweets. Watching politics is so aggravating these days.

Love all the wonderful animal vids. I couldn’t take twitter without all of these soothing breaks from politics.

DYB, is the actor in that skit Pedro Pascal?

OMG, what great animal videos. Yes, they sooth my heart and chase away the ugly things humans are doing around the world.

I am so excited, I will be getting my Australian Labradoodle puppy on March 26th!!
I haven’t had a dog in more than a decade.

Rebuttal to Republican banning of her book
By Margaret Atwood. I thought it was pretty interesting.

Shadow, congrats! That sounds wonderful.

Shadow, how lovely! We insist on photos! Will it be a puppy?

McMass, that article is amazing. Thanks for posting.

Annie and Luna, thanks. I am so excited I can’t express my glee in words.

Yes, this is going to be an 8 week old puppy. I’m not sure how I can pass a photo of him/her when I get the pup???? (The day hasn’t come to get photos to decide on which puppies will be available and which ones I will have to choose from.

I can send a link to a photo of the parents, you have to scowl down to the photos of the Mama Margo and the Daddy Wrigley.

The Atwood article — “Possibly, the real motive lies elsewhere” LOL!

I’m so behind on all of your comments. I’ve been working a lot. It’s semi-annual review season which always adds quite a bit of hours to my week.

I’ll just comment for now that I’m very excited for Shadowfax and your new dog, coming soon! Doodles are so much fun. A couple of my very good friends have them.

Thanks MB, I need a bouncing bundle of puppy antics and kisses to get me through these lingering effects of a pandemic and all the rotten news we get on a daily basis.

Animal videos have helped us get though some of the worst times since 2007 and life is so much sweeter with our own little lovies.

Hip, hip hooray for animals that help ground us, share love, so much humor and always put a smile on our face.

@54 – if you want a very active puppy, a doodle should be perfect!!

Some shocking (in a good way) news: A Democrat could be elected governor in Mississippi.

@45 annie, yes that’d Pedro Pascal. He was hosting SNL.

Shadow, so cool about a doggie! It’ll be soooo cute!

@56, Lol, such funny cats! The kitty on the left is saying “Don’t you dare to even think about giving me a bath” and the one on the right is thinking “My human has gone completely insane.”

Border collies!


Happy Valentine’s Day!

DYB @58
Thanks, good to see you here again.

I was just going to post the news from Diane Feinstein too. I’m glad she will stay in the Senate until her term ends, and I am sad that she lost her husband recently.
Nancy and Diane have been a fantastic team for CA and for all women.

I hope this comes out:

Happy Valentine’s Day Luna, and all.

Fascinating thread:

Beata, Q and PJ, Happy Valentine’s Day. Miss you.

Good post about Diane, DYB.

People that weren’t around when Diane, Nancy and Barbara Boxer went to Congress…don’t know what a powerhouse they were. I am proud to say I have voted for them since they went to DC.

Actress and international bombshell Raquel Welch died Wednesday at her home in Los Angeles.

The reason I posted this news is because she was a beautiful woman, and she refused to pose nude.
I say, good for her…she didn’t need to sell herself to be a famous star.

Great animal pics on this thread–the kitties, the doggos, the goats…love them all.

I remember when Harvey Milk was shot, and was in S.F. at the time. It was an unnerving time, my boyfriend even talked about getting a handgun for protection (he worked in the Tenderloin area), although we had always felt safe in the city. Anyway, I always admired DiFi for her amazing bravery that day. I hope Adam Schiff gets her seat.

Still a funny old dude:

@69, DYB, I was just coming here to post that quote! Yes, as your own tweet yesterday pointed out, she supported LGB rights back when to do so was nearly the equivalent of ending her career.

Her voting record was largely progressive, but not predictable. More hawkish than many in her party, she defended targeted killing with drone strikes and government surveillance programs, but as chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, she commissioned a scathing 6,700-page report that in 2014 called the Central Intelligence Agency’s detention and interrogation of terrorism suspects what they were: torture. What’s more, the report concluded, the CIA’s methods were ineffective.

Happy belated Valentine’s Day, all! Love the animal pics and the posts about DiFi. Good for her that she is serving out her term and then retiring. She has had an amazing career.

I didn’t know that about Raquel Welch never posing nude. That is awesome.

Annie @ 72
Anyway, I always admired DiFi for her amazing bravery that day. I hope Adam Schiff gets her seat.

I feel the same way and have hopes for Schiff too.

Carville has always been funny and I am happy he is still at it.
Funniest is he is married to a Rethug.

I think Schiff would be the best to succeed to Feinstein’s seat.

Luna @77, agree. Katie Porter also announced for it and raised over a million in the following 24 hours, but I think Schiff is more experienced. Also, I’m not sure if Katie is a Hillary supporter. I think I saw her aligned with the squad or something.

annie, Katie Porter is a member of “The Squad.” Not a Hillary supporter.

@79, annie, Cats are so funny when they see something unexpected. Pounce! Then jump back as if startled, and pounce! again.

@81 DYB, well we definitely don’t want Katie Porter then. If she couldn’t see that Hillary was the most qualified candidate, we need someone with better judgement.

Children forcibly separated from their parents. No words.

Katie Porter is not and never has been part of The Squad.

Porter got her start in government when she was hired by then AG Kamala Harris to work for the California Attorney General’s office. Porter is close to both VP Harris, her former boss, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who was her professor in law school.

Porter was a Hillary supporter. Before election night in 2016, she ordered a cake with Hillary’s name on it to celebrate with family and friends. Porter had been asked by Hillary to join her transition team in Washington. Porter was already packed. She had purchased a winter coat and was ready to go.

Beata, thanks for all that info. I should have looked it up. We’re going thru a bathroom remodel and I’m frazzled.

Horrible about those poor Ukrainian children!

Beata, thanks for correcting us on Porter’s support for Hillary. I didn’t know that about her history.

Beata, great to see you and I also thank you for more details on Katie’s support for Hillary.
I’ve always liked Porter for her intelligence and fearless way she explains things to idiots, with her white board.
I hope Schiff wins, because of his legal mind and not backing down. I wouldn’t be upset if Katie won, I think she does a good job in the house.

Brava! Our Gal speaks out on healthcare.

Luna, our girl is such a breath of fresh air.

Beata, great to see you. Thanks for the history on Katie Porter. Glad she supported Our Girl!

Sorry about 92. I don’t know what happened.

Sorry for the messed up poss. I hope this one of Martha’s Vineyard comes out:

I wonder why the tweets I posted didn’t come out like they usually do?

Jimmy Carter to begin receiving hospice care.

Sad, but amazing that he is the oldest living President at 98 years old. He is one of the good guys.

I wonder why the tweets I posted didn’t come out like they usually do?

Elon is to blame for anything that is wrong with Twitter .

Oh! That bird’s tail is amazing! Don’t think the female was too impressed though, lol.

The Martha’s Vineyard one came out as search results for Martha. ???

Jimmy Carter was a good president, and he kept working to improve the lives of ordinary people through Habitat for Humanity and other endeavors. Can you imagine Trump or DeSantis carrying lumber or up on a ladder helping to build a house? They’d be hammering the wrong pieces together and have sold mortgages at 2% interest (which in the fine print changes to 30% in the 2nd year.)

Time for a cute amphibian, just don’t get too close.

Luna @101, omigosh, that’s wild!

That toad gives me the creeps, just to look at him.

He looks like the symbol for radioactive hazardous materials.

@103, Shadowfax, Lol! Yes, in a way it is!

Biden pops over to Kyiv to chat with Zelensky, sending another silent message to Putin that he’ll continue to lose his war of invasion.

President Biden made a dramatic, unannounced visit to Kyiv on Monday, in a display of robust American support for Ukraine just four days before the anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion.
Are you on Telegram? Subscribe to our channel for the latest updates on Russia’s war in Ukraine.

The high-risk visit to the historic Ukrainian capital — where air raid sirens blared as Biden walked the streets with President Volodymyr Zelensky — signaled continued commitment from the United States, the largest financial and military backer of Ukraine’s effort to repel Russian invaders from its territory.

Biden was spotted with the Ukrainian leader outside St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Monastery shortly before noon local time, his appearance capping hours of speculation during an intense security lockdown that had blocked car traffic and even pedestrians from parts of central Kyiv.

Following talks with Zelensky and a visit to the U.S. Embassy, Biden departed Kyiv several hours later, according to a reporter traveling with him. Biden’s visit, however brief, represented one of the most remarkable presidential trips in modern history, sending him into a country at war and a city under regular bombardment without the heavy U.S. military presence that provided a protective shield during previous stops in Iraq or Afghanistan.

Another trippy bird clip. The mama bird carries the babies somehow to a different area.

@106, annie, Their bonding and welcome-back greeting behavior!

Luna, been watching Biden’s trip on the news. He looks perfectly cool and casual. The nutters on Faux and Twits are freaking out over it.

Isn’t it hilarious how the Rs are freaking out at Biden thumbing his nose at Putin? Or maybe they just don’t like him supporting a democratic country fighting invasion by a totalitarian country.

Odd there was no outrage when all those Republicans spent the 4th of July in Russia the other year. I’m old enough to remember when the GOP new Russia was an enemy.

@111, “knew” not “new”

Annie, those bird clips were great.

Luna, Biden has proven he is a great President and not some has-been dud.

Another reason why we like those bird tweets!

Luna, agree that bird watching is good for your health.

Awww. Hope everyone in California stays warm enough!

Sweet picture of two pets in a knitted heart. I hope everyone finds a safe, warm place to settle down.

I feel terrible for everyone that is homeless or has to stay outside.

Hey Shinners, sorry that I’ve been MIA. Been out of town and heads-down at work.

I’ll put up a new post over the weekend!

Long but insightful thread.

@121, Ack! Looks like I didn’t put in the tweet URL. Now I can’t find it again…so never mind.

@123, Ha! I recall DeSantis had a similar idea a few years back — or was it another Southern state governor — and of course then clever women decided to send all used menstrual products to him to be checked for possible embryos/miscarriages.

Annie @123

Maybe I’ll also send him a used puppy pee pad when my new pup comes home. He can have it tested to find out if it’s something toxic or if the dog is a female in heat or not.

Track women’s private info…this man needs to be attacked by a troop of angry women.

Luna @105, heartbreaking, it hurts to think about these monstrous happenings.

@125, Great tweet!


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