Tuesday, May 06, 2014

The Economy, Stupid!

In a speech at a community college in April, President Obama stated that nearly nine million jobs had been created during his stewardship. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 138,365,000 non-agricultural jobs in 2008 and 137,499,000 jobs in January 2014. This represents a total decrease (net loss) in actual jobs of 866,000.

In 2008, there were 8,924,000 counted as unemployed. In January 2014, that figure was 10,236,000, or an increase in unemployed folks of 15%. In 2008, the labor force (age 16 & older) amounted to 66% of eligible workers. In January 2014, that figure was 63% and represented almost 12 million people apparently dropping out of the work force in just five years. Yet, the big news from the administration is that the unemployment rate has dropped to 6.3%.

This is the kind of smoke-and-mirrors stuff that marks the Obama administration – sorta like the humongous LIE about the Benghazi Massacre being a simple protest. The big news about Obamacare is that 8 million have enrolled, but as discovered by a House committee in canvassing participating insurance companies, only 67%, or 5.4 million have paid premiums, thus are actually covered. Except for Medicaid, no further enrollment will occur until November.

There were 138,252,000 jobs in the U.S. in April 2014 according to the CES survey of employers. The CPS survey of households showed 145,669,000 employed persons for the month. The US added 288,000 jobs in April 2014 according to the CES survey while the broader CPS employment measure fell by 73,000.

The administration claims 806,000 people stopped looking for work in April, ergo, the unemployment rate went down. One wonders just who decided on that exact number. That's called “cooking the books” to lower the unemployment rate in the hope that the citizens are ignorant enough to be bamboozled by election time in November. By then, as more people “stop looking,” the unemployment rate might be down to 0%. Perhaps there will then be an employment rate of -5%...just not enough people to do all the jobs—Egad!

The employer-mandate connected to Obamacare was – by his illegal stroke of the pen – delayed from January 2014 to January 2015, BUT as the truth regarding its effects has been becoming clearer, Obama – by the stroke of the pen – has delayed it to January 2016...or thereabouts...who knows? In the meantime, employers are figuring ways to avoid providing healthcare as a perk to get good people on the job.

Since the cutoff workday limit for Obamacare is prescribed as 30 hours in order to force compliance, employers are opting for the 30-hour workweek (or 29 hours + 59 minutes), making under-employment the wave of the future. Folks can work two 30-hour jobs and buy their own healthcare insurance, the premiums and deductibles for which are shooting higher. This plays havoc with the job situation, of course, but who's counting anyway?

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

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