Most of us know someone out of work. Someone who has been out for a longtime. Maybe they’re a highly qualified middle management engineer who got too old. Maybe it’s a recent graduate who’s having to work part-time. They know they’ve dropped off the employment roll and been eliminated from the Government’s unemployment statistics. But does America?
Jim Clifton is Chairman and CEO at Gallup, the research and polling company. He wrote the article précised here and reproduced in full here. It’s a wake-up call to America and it supports everything we at Independent Living have been advising for many years. You are on your own out there. You can’t trust the government to protect you, heck, they won’t even tell you the truth.
Here’s something that many Americans — including some of the smartest and most educated among us — don’t know: The official unemployment rate, as reported by the U.S. Department of Labor, is extremely misleading.
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.
Also: 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%.
And: those working part time but seeking full-time work don’t count either.
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.
Gallup defines a good job as 30+ hours per week for an organization that provides a regular paycheck. 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.
Thank you Mr Clifton and Gallup for putting this out there. America needs to wake up to the Big Lie.
Update- Gallop Chairman now in fear of his life
Jim Clifton, the Chairman and CEO of Gallup, recently told CNBC that he was worried he might “suddenly disappear” if he disputed the accuracy of what the U.S. government is reporting as unemployed Americans, Wall Street on Parade reported.
“I think that the number that comes out of BLS [Bureau of Labor Statistics] and the Department of Labor is very, very accurate. I need to make that very, very clear so that I don’t suddenly disappear. I need to make it home tonight.”