Friday, December 17, 2010

What Is The Truth About Unemployment In America?

Check out the status of unemployment across America and how high the figure is for the long term unemployed.

From Denny: The reality is that the recent tax cuts bill that was signed by President Obama on Friday only reinstates and extends unemployment insurance to about one million people. That's it.

The 99ers

Remember all those who have been unemployed for so long - past the two year mark and many for as long as four years - now called The 99ers because they exhausted their 99 weeks of available benefits? There are literally millions of them, perhaps as many as seven million by now.  Every month there are an additional two million added to their roles. Though the statistics are sketchy and infrequent it's believed The 99ers make up at least 10 percent of the unemployed.

Most 99ers over age 50 

Never mind that most of The 99ers are older Baby Boomers, there are those under age 45, many are well past age 50. They have paid unemployment insurance from their paychecks every month, every year, for decades. Now, in their time of need, their own government and politicians turn a deaf ear to them. How long before you, a relative or someone close to you enters their unhappy ranks? And we wonder why we see so much violence on the news every night, as a larger and larger segment of American society grows more desperate?

Economists seem to think maybe the economy is turning around because of the number of initial unemployment claims have trended downward by 400,000 this past month. Let's hope they are correct on their judgment call because this economy has already shed eight million jobs during this so-called "recession."

Long term unemployed figures vs. short term 

How many long term unemployed are there in America? Try 6.3 million and that's about 42 percent of all the unemployed. That's not the best figure to know that creeping up to half of all your country's unemployed are long term unemployed.

Just this past week retailers like TJ Maxx let go 4,400 jobs right before Black Friday that comes the day after the Thanksgiving holiday. It's supposed to be the best shopping day of the year and yet they shed those jobs. Clearly, something is still wrong in this economy.

If you believe the news stories, watching bustling happy shoppers purchasing expensive gifts for this Christmas season you would be led to think the economy has bounced back. The problem is that those news clips are taken at the upscale shopping malls, in metro areas and wealthy neighborhoods. I'd like to see news clips from middle class malls, from small to medium-sized towns and cities, to get a better average of the truest reality of holiday shopping.

Take a look at the jobless rates in some of the states:

* North Dakota, lowest jobless rate, 3.8 percent
* South Dakota, 4.5 percent
* Nebraska, 4.6 percent
* New Hampshire 5.4 percent
* Vermont 5.7 percent
* Nevada, 14.3 percent, the highest unemployment rate among the states in November. * California, 12.4 percent
* Michigan, 12.4 percent
* Florida, 12 percent rate
* Rhode Island, 11.6 percent

True unemployment rate a guessing game

Apparently, there were 21 states, and the District of Columbia, reporting unemployment decreases. (In D.C. there are literally thousands who work for the federal government so it is not a true picture of the rest of the country since it is not a private sector free market free fall.)

There were 17 states reporting increases in unemployment while there were five states that had no change. Mind you, these are the official figures and I question the true transparency of this White House like its predecessors. Many speculate that unemployment figures run far higher, with figures ranging from 17 percent to 22 percent. That doesn't even begin to address the long term under employed who are finding it difficult to pay bills because prices remain high for necessities like gas for your car, food at the grocery store, a colder winter heating bills and the like.

The kind of numbers and spin we keep getting out of our politicians is annoying at best. The people they are not counting in government statistics are at least seven or more million long term unemployed, people unemployed for the past two to four years - which is insane.

Politicians keep telling us those eight to ten million jobs that went overseas will never come back. So, we can only assume that eight to ten million people will remain long term unemployed?

What is really going on here? We have official statistics of 6.3 million long term unemployed of which the government claims make up to 42 percent of the unemployed. Then add in seven million of The 99ers and you get a truer picture of almost 14 million or more long term unemployed - since two million a month are added to the rolls of The 99ers because they have exhausted their benefits. The reality is that almost 70 percent of our unemployed are long term unemployed. That's the dirty little secret this White House and Congress are hiding and the statistics with which they are playing spin games.

Well, it's any one's guess what will happen to the long term unemployed in this country.  Stay tuned for The New Ugly, the new Congress that's installed in January to see what's next on the horizon for increasingly desperate Americans.

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