Felix Salmon thinks the White House knows that little can be done to bring down unemployment:

On the call, [White House economic advisor Jason] Furman valiantly tried to paint policies like cash-for-clunkers and the extension of unemployment insurance as being all about creating jobs, but the fact is that it’s hard for any government to create jobs, beyond simply hiring more people, and the effect of those policies on the unemployment rate was surely minimal at best. ... [W]hile keeping the economy from slipping back into recession is something doable, bringing unemployment back down, even to where it was when Obama first took office, isn’t. They’re not going to admit that in public, but neither are they going to expend too much effort tilting at windmills.

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