I've written frequently about the unemployment statistics, and how they're basically a fraud from start to finish - 'massaged' by officials to present the most favorable picture. Now the Gallup organization has made many of the same points. They've even called it 'The Big Lie'.
Right now, we're hearing much celebrating from the media, the White House and Wall Street about how unemployment is "down" to 5.6%. The cheerleading for this number is deafening. The media loves a comeback story, the White House wants to score political points and Wall Street would like you to stay in the market.
None of them will tell you this: 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.
There's more at the link.
I've said it before and I'll say it again: official government economic statistics aren't worth the paper they're printed on. The problem isn't limited to the unemployment rate. For example, it's claimed that US inflation was only 0.8% during 2014.
Sure it was - if you leave out of your calculations almost everything important to the consumer, including food, fuel and so on. Shadowstats' John Williams measures inflation the old-fashioned way, leaving in every element of importance, and he comes up with a rather different picture.
0.8%? Or ten times that? My money's on Mr. Williams' calculations. I pay our bills. The evidence in my wallet and my bank account is all on his side.