White House Telling “Big Lie” on Unemployment?

Obamya

On Fox News, we read:

The chairman of the venerable Gallup research and polling firm says the official U.S. unemployment rate is really an underestimation and a “big lie” perpetuated by the White House, Wall Street and the media.

What CEO and Chairman Jim Clifton revealed in his blog Tuesday about how the Labor Department arrives at the monthly unemployment rate is no secret — including that Americans who have quit looking for work after four weeks are not included in the survey.

I have discussed this before: the official Unemployment Rate is a borderline hoax. It does not count the long-term unemployed. After a person has been unemployed for a certain length of time, they are no longer considered “unemployed”; they’re considered “out of the workforce”, which is quite different. Retired seniors, stay-at-home moms, and paraplegics are out of the workforce. This is quite different from just being unable to find a job for months.

As the CEO of Gallup explains it:

If you, a family member or anyone is unemployed and has subsequently given up on finding a job — if you are so hopelessly out of work that you’ve stopped looking over the past four weeks — the Department of Labor doesn’t count you as unemployed. That’s right. While you are as unemployed as one can possibly be, and tragically may never find work again, you are not counted in the figure we see relentlessly in the news — currently 5.6%. Right now, as many as 30 million Americans are either out of work or severely underemployed. Trust me, the vast majority of them aren’t throwing parties to toast “falling” unemployment.

There’s another reason why the official rate is misleading. Say you’re an out-of-work engineer or healthcare worker or construction worker or retail manager: If you perform a minimum of one hour of work in a week and are paid at least $20 — maybe someone pays you to mow their lawn — you’re not officially counted as unemployed in the much-reported 5.6%. Few Americans know this.

Yet another figure of importance that doesn’t get much press: those working part time but wanting full-time work. If you have a degree in chemistry or math and are working 10 hours part time because it is all you can find — in other words, you are severely underemployed — the government doesn’t count you in the 5.6%. Few Americans know this.

There’s no other way to say this. The official unemployment rate, which cruelly overlooks the suffering of the long-term and often permanently unemployed as well as the depressingly underemployed, amounts to a Big Lie.

It doesn’t pay the US government to tell the truth about unemployment. It’s better for them to let everyone believe the lie. Wall Street likes seeing a lower unemployment rate; it fools investors into thinking that the economy is improving, even though it’s only stagnant at-best. Main Street schmoes get warm fuzzies from a lowering rate, especially for Obama fans; it makes them feel like things must be getting better.

Don’t be taken for a fool. See through the lies.

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