Lie to Me!
8.6% unemployment rate! WOW! That is such good news isn't it? Not really when you consider that the rate plummeted because of people who quit looking for work--a fact that has finally been admitted in a Mainstream Media outlet (MSNBC). Combined with the hiring of seasonal workers, it is giving us a falsely rosy picture of the actual shape of the economy:
More than half the jobs added last month were by retailers, restaurants and bars, a sign that holiday hiring has kicked in. Retailers added 50,000, the sector's biggest gain since April. Restaurants and bars hired 33,000 workers. The health care industry added 17,000.
Still, a worrisome drop in the size of the U.S. workforce means that even with a big decline in the unemployment rate in November, it's still not time to break out the champagne.
The fall in the jobless rate was aided by 315,000 people leaving the workforce. That pushed the participation rate, a ratio of the amount of the population in the labor force, down to 64.0 percent.
By there own admission above, the true unemployment rate is more than 1 in 3 Americans are unemployed. Before anyone mistakenly claims that the participation rate mentioned above is of the whole population, including children, it isn't. That number is the total amount of Americans over the age of 16 who could be working if everyone wanted to and could find a job. Remove the 12.6% of those over the age of 65 (like that many are, or could really afford to, voluntarily retire) and the 7.1% who are between the ages of 15-19 (once again assuming that none of them want a job), and we still have an unemployment rate of 14% of the work force--not 8.6% as is being claimed. Maybe if the Stimulus Funds had gone to infrastructure projects instead of bankers bonuses, we wouldn't be in this mess to begin with?
As Mark Twain once said; "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."
Funny how the U.S. Government can manage to become an expert in all three at once....