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Posted at 3:45 PM ET, 02/ 7/2011

The last 30 years in the labor market in one graph

By Ezra Klein

From the latest edition of the Economic Policy Institute's "State of Working America":

Jobs_peak-to-peak-industry_without_titles_2.png

Note that the numbers stop in 2007, so the lines representing the Aughts are reflecting pre-recession trends. If you add in 2008-2011, of course, everything looks much, much worse.

By Ezra Klein  | February 7, 2011; 3:45 PM ET
Categories:  Charts and Graphs  
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Comments

In all three decades, the average growth in the private sector was the same or greater than the total. Does this mean that public sector growth is LESS than private sector growth? That would be odd, given how much we've been told that the government is growing out of control and taking over more and more of our economy.

Posted by: DavidinCambridge | February 7, 2011 4:39 PM | Report abuse

In all three decades, the average growth in the private sector was the same or greater than the total. Does this mean that public sector growth is LESS than private sector growth? That would be odd, given how much we've been told that the government is growing out of control and taking over more and more of our economy.

Posted by: DavidinCambridge | February 7, 2011 4:43 PM | Report abuse

You're ignoring the dramatic increase in government contractors, which are "private".

Posted by: theo2709 | February 7, 2011 6:08 PM | Report abuse

Since 1970 the number of federal employees as a fraction of the population has fallen by 42% (14.4 per 1000 to 8.4 per 1000), according to http://voices.washingtonpost.com/federal-eye/2010/09/how_many_federal_workers_are_t.html

Posted by: suehall | February 7, 2011 6:45 PM | Report abuse

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