The Gallup organization is one of the most respected polling organizations around. Whether you believe their polls or not, there’s no denying that the Gallup folks know about the science of statistics and how numbers can be used and misused to inform or sway public opinion.
Which is why it’s a big deal when the CEO of Gallup comes out and point-blank accuses the government of lying about unemployment.
“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,” wrote CEO Jim Clifton on the Gallup website.
It seems like many conservative critics have been saying this for years. It’s a story that can be read buried in the figures of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which maintains six different categories of jobless numbers just to confuse the issue.
The numbers the Obama Administration and the complicit media like to crow about are from the category dubbed U-3. It’s currently at 5.6 percent, which sounds pretty good.
And that’s the point, to make Obama look good and to give the useful idiots something to throw at conservatives around the water cooler — excuse me, more like the soup line, these days.
The most inclusive measurement, called the U-6 category, puts actual unemployment at 11.2 percent. Some economists have suggested even that is generous.
As Clifton explains, it’s not what the unemployment numbers show, but what they don’t show, that makes the difference:
“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.”
Clifton also points out that anyone who works as little as one hour a week and earns at least $20 is considered employed as far as the BLS is concerned.
The official number also doesn’t take into account people who want full-time work but only hold part-time jobs — the chronically underemployed, who certainly have a downward effect on the country’s productivity.
“Gallup defines a good job as 30+ hours per week for an organization that provides a regular paycheck,” Clifton writes. “Right now, the U.S. is delivering at a staggeringly low rate of 44%, which is the number of full-time jobs as a percent of the adult population, 18 years and older. We need that to be 50% and a bare minimum of 10 million new, good jobs to replenish America’s middle class.”
As has been pointed out elsewhere, virtually all the net increase in jobs since Obama has taken office has gone to foreign nationals. The Administration’s latest scandal, the revelation that Obama has been handing out millions of work permits to unqualified illegals in violation of immigration law, helps explain why that is so and why the middle class isn’t feeling the “recovery” that the Administration and media assure us has been happening for years.
You can’t solve a problem without making a realistic assessment of it in the first place.
Our economy keeps being slow because we voted twice for an Administration that can’t bring itself to tell us the truth.
When it comes to a choice between what’s good for the country and what’s good for Emperor Obama, Obama chooses himself.