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How bad is it?

Not as bad as this (which deceptively does not control for the change in the size of the workforce as a number of you pointed out, thank you very much), but I think it's worse than Alan Reynolds thinks it is. Here is a useful picture from Bob Hall and Susan Woodward:


A similar analysis from William Polley (HT: Ironman) is here.

But the more important question is whether we know anything about how to make it better. The fact that it's bad doesn't justify making it worse. I think Arnold has the right perspective on that.