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The Real Side | Commentary by Joe Messina
| Monday, Oct 6, 2014

joemessinamugGovernment math takes on many forms. I think it’s the basis for Common Core math. In Common Core, 2 plus 2 plus 2 doesn’t always equal 6. Just like 18 percent of employable people in the U.S. equals a 5.9-percent unemployment rate.

The 5.9-percent number is usually arrived at simply by looking at how many Americans file for unemployment every week, both new and continuing claims. You hear about the numbers of people dropping off of the rolls, but you never hear why. The assumption is that they found a job.

Do you ever hear them report the number of people who drop off of the unemployment rolls because they ran out of time? Or the ones who got discouraged and gave up looking because they couldn’t find employment? What about the ones who switch to disability because they are now having physical and mental issues as a result of their job search? (Insert cricket sound here.)

Most economists use another set of numbers that the government Bureau of Labor Statistics calls “U-6.” It defines the “total unemployed, plus all marginally attached workers, plus total employed part-time for economic reasons, as a percent of all civilian labor force, plus all marginally attached workers.”

The number takes into account the underemployed, discouraged, and unemployed workers. This number actually did fall for the first time below 12 percent to 11.8 percent. Hey, don’t get too excited yet.

Remember, just before the election period in 2012, we were told unemployment was down. Many government math “adjustments” were made to the unemployment numbers all summer leading up to the November 2012 election.

But fudging the numbers shouldn’t be a big surprise. I mean, look at the other “adjustments” that were made: Benghazi was not another 9/11 anniversary attack and the Obamacare rollout debacle was really just a few minor glitches, much like that whole “keeping your doctor” thing.

Back to government math. In September, the unemployment rate dropped by 0.2 percent to 5.9 percent. The number of people unemployed dropped by about 329,000 to 9.3 million.

But here is the important part: As well the civilian labor force, participation rate has been hovering around 62.7 percent and changed little in September. Simply put, this means only about 63 percent of the people able to work are actually working. And the number of people receiving Social Security and disability is at an all-time high. Does that sound encouraging to you?

How can we say only 5.9 percent of Americans are out of work? I can’t get there with Common Core or government math. Let’s crunch some numbers. 350 million Americans minus 75 million children leaves us with 275 million. Take away the 60 million on Social Security, and that leaves us with 215 million Americans. Now remove the 11 million on disability, and we are down to 204 million Americans who should be available to work.

The government says there are 93 million unemployed persons in this country who do not fit in the above categories. How in God’s creation is 93 million 5.9 percent of 204 million? To add insult to injury, the government also says a majority of the jobs created in recent years are part-time.

If “Joe” was working a full-time job that paid all the bills in the household and he now has to work two jobs to pay all the bills, doesn’t that also skew the unemployment numbers?

Median incomes have fallen by 7 percent since Obama took office. The $2,400 savings promised on health insurance has turned into a $2,400 cost to families. Not to mention the average number of hours worked per week fell to 33.7. This is the “new” work week.

In 1983, jobs added under Reagan exceeded 1.1 million. This White House gets excited over little more than a quarter of a million jobs. Yet we consistently hear from the left how bad Reagan’s economic plans were.

People do your homework. The numbers don’t work. The government unemployment numbers are shameful.

We have an election coming up. It time to vote ‘em out.

 

Joe Messina is host of The Real Side (TheRealSide.com), a nationally syndicated talk show that runs on AM-1220 KHTS radio and SCVTV [here]. He is also an elected member of the Hart School Board. His commentary publishes Mondays.

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3 Comments

  1. Bill says:

    You ask how they came up with this math, Joe.

    It is very simple, they lie

  2. Tessa Lucero says:

    How many million adults pursuing full-time education? How many million uncompensated caregivers not counted as employed, whether caring for children, the elderly, or disabled relatives or others? How many millions who can’t work because of a disabling condition but who aren’t receiving Social Security disability benefits?

    I think those figures also need to be subtracted from the 93 million to get a more accurate number of those out of work.

    My mother, for instance, gave up her office administrator job when she was 55, when her first grandchild was born. Her children were through college, the family didn’t need her income, and she wanted to be able to spend time with her new granddaughter. She was fortunate to be in this position. She’d be counted as one of the 93 million, however she certainly did not consider herself “unemployed” and she was not looking for work.

    Just one example of how the 93 million aren’t all involuntarily out of work.

  3. Dorene Tapp Dorene Tapp says:

    I am one of those who lost my job, unemployment benefits ran out, no new job. I had to start taking my Social Security early which means less money than if I had been able to wait until my full retirement age. I’m still looking for a job, but I’m one of those who are not included in the unemployment figures. The numbers the government puts out don’t mean a thing!

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