Sham Stats

Joel Hirschhorn called his April 6th article in OpEdNews, “Despicable Lies, Delusional Recovery”.

“The US government lies,” he tells us – as though we didn’t already know. His next point was that Americans gobble up false and misleading information that is nothing less than political propaganda. We knew that, too.

As an example of this propaganda – this “newsspeak” – he cited the highly hyped unemployment number for March 2011 of 8.8 percent that “moved like a tornado through the media and was praised by Democrat politicians in the White House”, as though that number was accurate . But it wasn’t. The real unemployment number was actually 17.7 percent, which is remarkably higher.

Mr. Hirschhorn continues, “The official government unemployment figure has been carefully crafted to intentionally underestimate actual unemployment. The way the data are collected through a survey of homes intentionally ignores a number of unemployed and underemployed Americans. The latter includes those who have stopped looking for a job because it has become crystal clear to them that there are no jobs for them …

“Similarly, Gallup polling which takes into account these other factors found the total number for March up slightly to 20.3 percent of the US workforce.

“As if this sham game is not bad enough, what the government also does not reveal with hard information is that most new jobs being created now are low wage ones often without any good benefits. Another reason to see how delusional the economic recovery is.

“To get back to a low unemployment level characteristic of a good economy could take up to ten years. The federal lie includes 13.5 million unemployed workers but the real number is more like 28.2 million. That means a lot more hardship and suffering in the fictional recovery than the government wants the public to know about. The number of real unemployed workers has increased by 11.5 million since the start of the Great Recession, and just since December 2008 by 3.7 million.

“The economy must add 13 million private sector jobs over the next three years – 360,000 each month – to bring unemployment down to 6 percent. There is no possible or imaginable way for this to happen …”

We agreed with everything Mr. Hirschhorn wrote – except for that last sentence. There is, in fact, a way – and the only way – for 360,000 private sector jobs to be added each month. We’ve been pushing the point for the better part of five years, and we’ve reminded almost every one of the hucksters in Washington that, in the earlier Great Depression of the 1930s, subsidized emergency shipbuilding programs created more than 13 million private sector jobs – almost overnight.

But full employment would louse up the weapons industry, though, wouldn’t it? Tsk, tsk.