Obamanomics: Lies, damned lies, and statistics – Part II

Unemployment number

A few months ago I wrote a piece called, “Bureau of Labor Statistics: Lies, damned lies, and statistics” where I documented the realities hidden in some of Obama’s economic policies. Unfortunately, recent news on the economy called for a sequel to be written.

According to the talking heads at the White House, and the state-controlled media that rubber-stamps all things Obama, the U.S. economy is well on the way to recovery despite facts proving the opposite:

Last week, we were told how unemployment had dropped to 5.4 percent, which makes it the lowest rate since May, 2008. An interesting statistic, since the number of Americans not in the labor force climbed to a near record level of 93,194,000. The Labor Force Participation Rate (the percent of people 16 years old and older who are eligible to work) held steady at 62.8 percent.

As of January 2015, the number of Americans receiving food stamps had topped 46,000,000 for forty-one straight months. That means that 14.5 percent of the American population received food stamps every month for over three years, going back to September 2011.

During the Great Depression, long bread lines of hungry people waiting for hours to get a meal served as a visible reminder to the country’s economic woes, but today’s digital bread lines are invisible and easy to ignore. Most Americans are unaware of the magnitude of the $6 billion per month being spent.

As I documented in the earlier article, unemployment reports are nothing but “a Big Lie” — as Jim Clifton of Gallup once called it. Some of the facts from my earlier piece showed how the government manipulates data to suit its purposes:

  • If you are unemployed and have subsequently given up on finding a job over the past four weeks, the government doesn’t consider you unemployed. Right now, there are 30+ million Americans who fall into this category.
  • If you’re an out-of-work professional—such as an engineer, healthcare worker, construction worker or retail manager—and you perform a minimum of ONE HOUR OF WORK per week and are paid at least $20, you’re not officially counted as unemployed.
  • If you are college graduate with a degree in chemistry or math and are working 10 hours a week on a part-time basis because that’s all you’ve been able to find—in other words, you are severely underemployed—the government doesn’t count you either.

In a nutshell, if you are no longer receiving unemployment benefits, or if you a “discouraged” worker who has given up looking for work, Uncle Sam doesn’t consider you unemployed. If the unemployment rate were calculated using these workers, it would be in excess of 23 percent according to Shadowstats.com, a number that would easily rival the Great Depression.

It was Mark Twain who coined the phrase I used for my previous article: “There are three kinds of lies — lies, damned lies and statistics“.

Now, just as it was then, Mr. Twain could very well have been talking about Obama’s economic report.

For more on this story, please go to Personal Liberty.