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Posts Tagged ‘unemployment numbers’

Unemployment figures

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June 2nd, 2012 Posted 3:02 pm

The recently announced national unemployment number of 8.2 percent incited a new round of skeptics and pseudo-economists questioning the validity of the numbers.  Many are now thinking the numbers are being manipulated at high levels to produce the numbers they want to see, not a true reflection of the true state of employment.  Others say the numbers are just as trustworthy as the entity producing the numbers.

One conservative economic organization came out yesterday and said that the numbers are skewed because they now exclude people who have allegedly, out of prolonged frustration, stopped looking for work altogether.  These people who had been applying for one or two jobs every quarter, have now stopped applying, stopped wasting their time…time which could be better spent watching Newhart reruns, or playing with the dog.  The organization said that the true unemployment number would rise to 15% if they included those neuvo-slouches back in the mix.

Another organization has countered that if you started recounting these people, then you should also count people who currently have jobs, but don’t like their jobs, and are consequently virtually unemployed.  Many have been getting paychecks for doing next to nothing, while coworkers are having to pick up their slack, and often having to work overtime.  These coworkers should be counted as a person-and-a-half in the equation.  Similarly, people who work two jobs should be counted as two, and guys who deliver pizza on the side should get at least half-person additional credit.

The Citizens Against Illegal Aliens (CAIA) group has argued that the whole exercise is irrelevant.  They say that if the government stepped-up and took care of the illegal problem, there would be oodles of jobs available in yard work, odd jobs, freight handling, hotel maid, taxi cab, and ethnic food service sub-industries.  They acknowledge that most current unemployed people would not want to do the jobs in these sectors because the work is hard and the pay is too lousy.  But the jobs would be there if/when the government dole stopped and they got desperate.

Meanwhile, the administration said that the current unemployment figures are the best we have now, and are unwilling to make any formal changes to formulas.  The spokesman said that if reelected in November, they will promise to form a blue ribbon commission to examine the numbers, and recommend ways to make them look better so that everyone is not so bummed-out when the numbers are reported.


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