Tag Archives: JOBS

Mark Caserta: Politicians must learn to put people ahead of politics, power

7 Oct


Mark Caserta: Free State Patriot Editor

Barack Obama

Last week, I asked the question, “After eight long years of Obama, are you better off?”

For anyone willing to be intellectually honest, the question was a rhetorical one. Frankly, our nation has never been in worse condition. Yet, from the bowels of the progressive prevaricators, we received a deluge of rebuttal.

Liberals leveraging their lexicon of lies continue to try to convince hurting Americans not only are they better off, but frankly should be happy the “anointed one” rode in on his golf cart in 2008 to rescue them from supervillain “Gru” W. Bush and his little red minions.

But, for those just now paying attention to the upcoming election, let’s look at the facts.

Jobs are arguably the primary indicator for our economy, and their availability is “deplorable.”

Liberal Democrats have consistently tried to mislead Americans into believing the job situation is improving when in fact it’s growing increasingly worse. The Obama administration continues to exploit bogus unemployment numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Most people don’t realize the ambiguity of the unemployment numbers. These statistics aren’t derived by actually counting unemployed individuals. They’re gathered from a survey called the Current Population Survey (CPS).

Each month, the government conducts the CPS by contacting 60,000 eligible sample households and asking about their “labor force activities” (job holding and job seeking) or non-labor force status of the household’s members. These interviews are supposedly conducted either in person or over the phone. The survey responses are then “weighted,” or adjusted to independent population estimates from the Census Bureau, for the final estimates.

The malleability of these statistics is troubling, especially leading up to this presidential election!

And the current unemployment rate of 4.9 percent is inaccurate since it drops from the equation those who are currently neither working nor looking for work. The U-6 total unemployed number reported by the BLS is actually 9.7 percent. But I believe it’s much higher.

Even this number doesn’t account for individuals driven from their 40-hour work week by Obamacare’s employer mandate and are working multiple jobs to survive.

Furthermore, our nation’s labor force participation rate, at 62.8 percent, is at a 38-year low with a record 94.7 million Americans out of the labor force, according to the BLS.

In December 2008, before the coronation of Barack Hussein Obama, the number was 65.8 percent.

It gets worse.

The real median household income for the United States has decreased from $57,211 in 2008 to $53,657 in 2014. And with soaring prices, even this number isn’t comparing apples to apples.

Tragically, nearly 45 million people are now participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program compared to 30 million pre-Obama, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Even so, liberal Democrats tell us we’re better off.

We need honest leaders, with business acumen, who know how to create good-paying jobs.

But they must first be willing to put people ahead of politics and power.

Mark Caserta is a conservative blogger, a Cabell County resident and a regular contributor to The Herald-Dispatch editorial page.

Mark Caserta: Job numbers represent smoke and mirrors

21 May

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Mark Caserta:  Free State Patriot Editor

May. 21, 2015 @ 12:01 AM

The unemployment rate being fed to the American people by our own government is simply smoke and mirrors.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) recently reported that the U.S. economy added 223,000 jobs in April and the unemployment rate fell to 5.4 percent.

Look around you. Do you see good paying jobs being created? The cruel truth of the matter is that the official unemployment rate cruelly overlooks the suffering of the long-term and often permanently unemployed, as well as the underemployed. If you give up and stop searching for a job, the U.S. government stops counting you in the work force.

And here’s another crushing detail you’ll never hear from this administration or the liberal media. The number of Americans 16 years and older who did not participate in the labor force (meaning they neither had a job nor actively sought one in the last four weeks) rose to over 93 million in March, according to the BLS. In fact, the labor force participation rate has dropped to 62.7 percent, matching a 37-year low!

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Most people aren’t aware of the ambiguity of the jobs numbers.

Because unemployment insurance records relate only to people who have applied for benefits, and since it’s impractical to count every unemployed person each month, the government conducts a monthly survey called the “Current Population Survey” to measure the extent of unemployment.

Each month, “highly trained and experienced” Census Bureau employees contact 60,000 eligible sample households and ask about the labor force activities (job holding and job seeking) or non-labor force status of the members of these households during that particular survey week. Via an electronic questionnaire, the survey responses are “weighted,” or adjusted to independent population estimates from the Census Bureau. The weighting takes into account the age, sex, ethnicity and the state of residence of the individual, so that these characteristics are reflected in the proper proportions in the final estimates.

Do you think there may be a little room for error or chicanery here?

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Jim Clifton, the CEO of Gallup, recently wrote a piece in his blog about the underhandedness of the employment numbers and how the official unemployment rate does not accurately reflect the grim reality of jobs in America.

“Right now, we’re hearing much celebrating from the media, the White House and Wall Street about how unemployment is “down” to 5.6 percent. The cheerleading for this number is deafening,” Clifton writes. “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.”

Although Barack Obama often rails against income inequality in America, his policies have had little impact on poverty. A record 47 million Americans now receive food stamps, about 13 million more than when he took office.

Our nation is in decline on so many levels. But a good paying job means everything to a family. So why does this administration keep telling us it’s getting better?

Here’s the answer. In the progressive world, “better” is more people dependent upon government. It’s that simple.

Mark Caserta is a conservative blogger, a Cabell County resident and a regular contributor to The Herald-Dispatch editorial page.

Labor Force Participation Remains at 36-Year Low

6 Dec

Obama administration continues to use “smoke and mirrors” on U.S. jobs status

December 5, 2014 – 9:17 AM
Economy Jobs

FILE – In this Thursday March 13, 2014, file photo, job seekers line up to attend a marijuana industry job far in Downtown Denver.  (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File)

(CNSNews.com) – The labor force participation rate remained at a 36-year low of 62.8 percent in November, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
 The participation rate, which is the percentage of the civilian noninstitutional population who participated in the labor force by either having a job during the month or actively seeking one, was 62.8 percent in November which matches the percentage since March 1978.
 In November, according to BLS, the nation’s civilian noninstitutional population, consisting of all people 16 or older who were not in the military or an institution, reached 248,844,000. Of those, 156,397,000 participated in the labor force by either holding a job or actively seeking one.
 The 156,397,000 who participated in the labor force was 62.8 percent of the 248,844,000 civilian noninsttutional population, which matches the 62.8 percent rate in April, May, June, August and October of 2014 as well as the participation rate in March of 1978. The participation rate hit its lowest level of 62.7 percent in September 2014.
 Another 92,447,000 people did not participate in the labor force. These Americans did not have a job and were not actively trying to find one. When President Obama took office in January 2009, there were 80,529,000 Americans who were not participating in the office, which means that since then, 11,918,000 Americans have left the workforce.
participation rate
Of the 156,397,000 who did participate in the labor force, 147,287,000 had a job, and 9,110,000 did not have a job but were actively seeking one -– making them the nation’s unemployed.
 The 9,110,000 job seekers were 5.8 percent of the 156,397,000 Americans actively participating in the labor force during the month of November. Thus, the unemployment rate was 5.8 percent, the same as it was in October.
 The business and economic reporting of CNSNews.com is funded in part with a gift made in memory of Dr. Keith C. Wold.


4 May


Ambrose Evans-Pritchard

7:34PM BST 02 May 2014

The US economy has delivered two minor shocks in a week, prompting concerns that bond tapering by the Federal Reserve may be doing more damage than expected.

Non-Farm Payrolls data released on Friday shows that the workforce shed 806,000 jobs in April, a stunning drop that cannot plausibly be blamed on the weather. Wage growth and hours worked were both flat and the manufacturing hours per week fell.

This follows news earlier in the week that the economy to a halt in the first quarter. Growth plummeted to 0.1pc and is now well below the Fed’s “stall speed” indicator. Analysts blamed this on the freezing polar vortex over the winter.

Yet the jobs data confirm a disturbingly weak picture. The headline unemployment rate fell to 6.3pc but that was only because the labour “participation rate” plummeted back to a modern-era low of 62.8pc, last seen in 1978 when there were far fewer women in the workforce. The rate for males is the lowest ever recorded at 69.1pc.

The jobs market is highly volatile – and is often revised later – but the data are a warning that the US recovery may be losing momentum. Lakshman Achuthan, from the Economic Cycle Research Institute, said the trend was already weakening long before the cold weather. “We see a failure to launch. We’re decelerating, not accelerating, and that is a big concern,” he said.

The Fed has gradually been turning down the spigot of dollar liquidity, reducing its bond purchases by $10bn a month at each meeting, even though the bank’s measure of core PCE inflation has dropped to 1.1pc. The net stimulus has dropped from $85bn a month to $45bn.

This is a form of monetary tightening. Interest rates have not risen – though they are rising in real terms – but the quantity of money mechanism may nevertheless be having a powerful effect. The broadest measure of the money supply – Divisia M4 – has dropped from a growth rate above 6pc a year ago to just 2.6pc in March.

The Fed is unlikely to blink yet. Even the once dovish San Francisco Fed has warned that quantitative easing no longer serves a useful purpose and may be doing more harm that good at this stage, fuelling asset bubbles without much benefit for the real economy. Analysts say it would take several months of bad data to force the Fed to halt tapering and change course again.

US policy-makers no longer pay much attention to the monetary data. Robert Hetzel, from the Richmond Fed, said this led to a grave error in mid-2008 when the Fed’s voting board began to talk up rate rises even though the money supply was already buckling. He argues that this played a key part in the Lehman crash several months later.

Erica Groschen, from the Bureau of Labour Statistics, said the sudden drop in jobs last month was caused by fewer people joining the workforce, rather than people leaving. That is hardly reassuring, and conflicts with theories that the participation rate is falling because people are choosing to retire early.

The weakness may be nothing worse than a pause for breath – or a mid-cycle correction – as the US gears up for a second leg of the post-Lehman expansion. The risk is that this instead proves to be the end of growth cycle that is already long in the teeth by historic standards.

The possibility of a fresh downturn with the interest rates already at zero, the Fed’s balance sheet already at $4 trillion, and gross public debt above 100pc of GDP for the first time since the end of the Second World War is what keeps US economists awake night. There is little margin for policy error.


29 Apr


CNSNews.com) – In 20 percent of American families in 2013, according to new data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), not one member of the family worked.

A family, as defined by the BLS, is a group of two or more people who live together and who are related by birth, adoption or marriage. In 2013, there were 80,445,000 families in the United States and in 16,127,000—or 20 percent–no one had a job.

The BLS designates a person as “employed” if “during the survey reference week” they “(a) did any work at all as paid employees; (b) worked in their own business, profession, or on their own farm; (c) or worked 15 hours or more as unpaid workers in an enterprise operated by a member of the family.”

Members of the 16,127,000 families in which no one held jobs could have been either unemployed or not in the labor force. BLS designates a person as unemployed if they did not have a job but were actively seeking one. BLS designates someone as not in the labor force if they did not have a job and were not actively seeking one. (An elderly couple, in which both the husband and wife are retired, would count as a family in which no one held a job.)

In 20% of American Families, No One Works-1

Of the 80,445,000 families in the United States in 2013, there were 7,685,000—or about 9.6 percent—in which at least one family member unemployed.

The BLS has been tracking data on employment in families since 1995. That year, the percent of families in which no one had a job was 18.8 percent. The percentage hit an all-time high of 20.2 percent in 2011. It held steady at 20 percent in in 2012 and 2013.

The data on employment in families is based on Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey of the civilian noninstitutional population, which includes people 16 and older, who are not on active duty in the military or in an institution such as a prison, nursing home or mental hospital.

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