Unemployment rate hits 9% and pigs fly

The unemplyment rate for January 2011 has come in and it was astounding. Though all analysts projected an increase of unemployment, from 9.4% to 9.5%, the actual numbers came in vastly different. The latest figure is now 9%.

Such a huge and dramatic drop should be wonderful news. It should have sent the stock market soaring several hundred points. Economists should be lauding the Obama Administration, with pundits on the Left declaring a definitive success of the Obama Stimulus. Yet that isn’t happening.

You can’t blame the lack of attention on the events in Egypt. Even though the world is focused squarely on the uprisings in Tunisa, Yemen, Egypt and seemingly the entire Middle East that is not enough to detract from the #1 issue in America for the past 3 years. Jobs remain the priority among Americans, and the American economy is the key to a worldwide recovery. Were this report to be good news, it would be in the headlines right behind Egypt.

The fact is that the latest unemployment numbers are not good.

“A separate Labor Department survey of company payrolls showed 36,000 net jobs created — barely a quarter of the number needed to keep pace with population growth.”

In the past three months, the economy generated an average of 83,000 net jobs per month. That’s not enough to keep up with population growth.”

The actual number of jobs created can’t even keep up with the growth of the population. In fact the situation is worse than it sounds.

“…the government said that 36,000 new jobs were created last month, the fewest in four months. The slow job growth left some analysts doubting that the economic recovery is gathering momentum.”

With such bleak news, how did the number of unemployed drop? With such a widespread failure to create jobs (restaraunts and hotels lost 2,200 jobs, temporary agencies cut 11,000 jobs, financial services dropped 10,000, and even the Government eliminated 14,000 positions. Construction lost 32,000 but the big loser was transportation with 38,000 people becoming unemployed) the only logical question is where did the better unemployment number come from?

49,000 jobs were added to manufacturing. 28,000 jobs were created in retail. Huge increases not seen in a year of high unemployment rates. But not nearly enough to account for the chage in national figures. For the unemployment rate to drop this quickly, the largest drop in unemploment for 2 months since 1958, something big had to happen. Something big did indeed happen.

200,000 stopped being counted by the Government. They aren’t getting a check from the Government and therefore do not count as unempolyed anymore. Add to that another stat that hadn’t been broken in a quarter century,

“And the participation rate, which is the percentage of the working-age population working or looking for work, fell to a 26-year low of 64.2 percent.”

The fewest number of people who can work are doing so since 1985.

Put it all together and you get a clear message. Unemployment in the nation is rampant, no matter what the official unemployment rate is shown as. In fact the number of people employed in 2010 has been revised, with 200,000 fewer people employed than originally thought – for a total of 950,000 jobs created for the year. Given these facts it’s a surprise that the Dow Jones Index was able to eek out a 29 point increase on the day.

There is no doubt that as we approach the 2012 Presidential election season the drop in unemployment will be seized upon as a positive. That the figure will be taken out-of-context as an example of the Obama Stimulus and Obama Administration policies working. The use of soundbite politics and polispeak will spin the facts, creating rainbows and launching pigs to the sky.

But the public need only look at the dire situation of New York State, among dozens of States across ther country, to see the reality. 9,800 State jobs are proposed to be cut. Widespread service cuts are being undertaken. Spending freezes and total removal of pay for certain positions are being mandated. All of which still cannot match the loss to the budget for the fiscal year. None of which indicate an improving economy.

The unemployment rate is now 9%, the lowest since April 2009 (when it stood at 9.4%). Yet the only way this could be a positive is if you were to wear rose colored glasses.

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About the Author

Michael Vass
Born in 1968, a political commentator for over a decade. Has traveled the U.S. and lived in Moscow and Tsblisi, A former stockbroker and 2014 Congressional candidate. Passionate about politics with emphasis on 1st and 2nd Amendments.

21 Comments on "Unemployment rate hits 9% and pigs fly"

  1. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly


    The economy is shifting to represent a more responsible way of life!! I for one a self employed new york state resident have seen a sudden surge in work this january!! So without the “official unemployment numbers” I’ve seen positive growth here so you can take your negativity and shove it! Slow and steady is the way to sustainable growth!!!

  2. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly

    Anonymous 2

    What are you, an employment agency? Can’t you see the disparity in the numbers? No, because you are blinded by your love for the unaccomplished racist, caricature of leadership & manhood, OBAMA!

  3. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly

    Anonymous 1

    not an unemployment agency but if you listen to the argument he claims the numbers are do to less people being counted I say that a large number of people were on unemployment without need!! I am in the construction industry and have watched it begin to grow again. Slow but steady growth is way better than grow fast and crash! it takes time to build a proper foundation to build upon!!!

  4. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly

    Anonymous 3

    Fact is that the numbers are clearly contradictory.

  5. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly

    Anonymous 1

    Fact is the numbers don’t represent where I live!! Upstate New york is slowly beginning to recover! I dare ask, Are you employed?

  6. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly


    As long as the government continues to belive that to stimulate growth they need to give business tax break to expand and build to create jobs. the USA will continue to implode, not until wages are mandated to create citizens ability to support themselves and save will things get better. The old policy of sacrificeing worker compensation for business growth must end. And work that provides eqitable compensation for all workers must be acheived. The era of madating all citizens of working age be with a partner just to survive is a road to insolvency for the whole of the USA. Senator Edward Kennedy saw the road the USA was headed down many many years ago and was thwarted in Congress in his attempts to balance inequities in US worker wages. There is no answer but to give back to the workers and stop Congress from passing laws that create wealth for the few at the expense of the many and the country.

  7. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly

    Anonymous 4

    What kind of twisted logic is this??? Taking money from businesses, who employ, and giving to the government (not able to balance a checkbook…bankrupt Socialist Security , Medicare, etc…).

  8. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly

    Perhaps Perhaps Perhaps

    What is the truth? Who knows? The truth only matters to the individual facing losing a job and looking for a new one. Everyone with a job has no idea what is going on. Anectdotal evidence and shaky statistics are all anyone has anymore so truth is only what you experience. No one has any idea what is really going on….I find all reports lacking. Apparently, our society is perfectly content to move forward and leave people behind.

  9. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly


    I for one understand why unemployment is so high. I mean this guy “attended Rutgers University” and he writes like a fifth grade graduate. Use a damn spell checker.


    The fact is, the problem with the economy in the USA is people buy way to much foreign products. If you want a better economy, stay out of Walmart and look at what you buy. Stop buying the rice rockets and get a Ford, Dodge or Chevy.

    We are stuck with the president who is in office. Does no good to bash him at every turn. Why don’t you say positive things and give people hope, give people understanding of the real reasons for the bad economy.


  10. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly


    First of all, Obama is an unaccomplished recist, caricature of leadership & manhood. He is not to be lauded or respected in any way.

    Secondly, who are YOU to pick on someone’s spelling? Hypocrite: “…way to much…”. It is supposed to be “too”, Nostradummy.

    Thirdly, buying American is wrong as long as unions produce the cars, etc. If I were to start a business, I would look to overseas places. And I have visited exactly where I would set up shop.

  11. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly


    #1 I never claimed to have gone to a collage or university.

    #2 Why don’t you just go to China or Japan, We don’t want your anti-American butt here.

    Buy from China and put Chinese to work. Buy from Japan and put the Japanese to work. Take your finger out of your butt. Just because you buy from USA doesn’t mean you are buying union. But it does mean you will be putting your brother American to work.

  12. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly


    The only reliable measure of how well we’re REALLY doing on jobs is Private Industry Employment (USPRIV Series) counted as a percent of the working age, noninstitutionalized, population (CNP16OV Series — both from St Louis FED).

    At last look, that number is the lowest it’s been in the last quarter century, and essentially unchanged from the bottom of the Great Recession,, at just a hair above 45%.

  13. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly


    Fact is, Obamanomics does not work. Market is probably sustained by Obama’s directed QE crap and I’m guessing, people like me trying to make a buck before buying more gold & silver. Gotta watch for the music to stop or you are stuck with worthless stocks in Obama bankrupted companies.

  14. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly


    I think Obama’s Ideas are working!! Big mess takes a long time to clean up!!!

  15. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly


    I think the problem is that everybody wants instant results. It isn’t going to happen. When you get right down to the nuts and bolts of all this, the economy works by the dollar changing hands.

    People really need to spend and they really need to spend wisely. Look at what you buy. Where is that dollar going? Will it stay in the USA? Will it go to China?

  16. First let me state that yes I did attend Rutgers University. I am also a small business owner, in NY State. That said, I do make typographical mistakes (especially after taking painkillers for a bad back from shoveling snow).

    Even with errors in typing, the factual employment numbers provided and the further facts those numbers represent are not in question. Unemployment dropped not because of growth in job creation, but because some people no longer count in Government stats.

    While it would be nice to say that things are getting better, the data does not reflect this. While some would prefer to see only the most uplifting comments on the Obama Administration policy on the economy, it would be a lie for me to report.

    Economic reality does not conform to political preferences. Addressing this reality requires honesty. Fixing the problem does take time, but also a solution that works – or at least shows signs of working. To date the policies of the Obama Administration have not worked nor show signs of working. Spin will not make it better.

    It is also such spin that we want ALL voters to be prepared for in the 2012 election cycle.

  17. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly

    Don’t get me wrong, it is a good story. You backed up your points. It is I read fast and when I have to stop for one word to decipher it, it is a little frustrating to me.

    Ok lets just put the typos to rest…

    My point in all this is that it ISN’T the fault of any president. At least not fully. It is your fault. For anyone reading this comment, yes, it is your fault too. And not to hide in the shadows, it is my fault too. Because we all have something made in Japan, China, or elsewhere. And some of this stuff we could have bought made in the USA. I can honestly say I have always owned a car that was made in the USA. And they have always served me well.

    Americans just buy way to much foreign products. That is the problem. Those dollars are adding up. Just look at the value of the dollar against other currencies. China is screwing the world by keeping their money low. And it really pis-ses me off that when the China leader came over that nobody had the balls to say anything to him about it face to face.

    I am not union. But I know that unions get a bad rap because of the organized crime element. I have known people who are in the union. And they are not corrupt. They are not evil. They just work for a living.

    It just really gets tiring to watch article after article bashing people when it really isn’t all their fault. OK, he spent billions on unemployment. We will not see the fruits of that for a long time. Will the fruit be sweet or bitter? We will know in a few years probably.

    Buy with the label “Made in the USA”
    I am 100% red blooded American and I love my country.

  18. Comments as found at http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-binghamton/unemployment-rate-hits-9-and-pigs-fly


    I don’t understand the logic that labels this administration a failure for not creating enough jobs over 2 years, when the prior administration took 8 years to lose 7 million jobs.
    The biggest problem with manufacturing in the U.S. is poor management, both in terms of process and capitalization. Why is that foreign car makers can come here and draw from the same basic labor pool as U.S. makers and operate without unions? It’s the way they manage.

  19. Anon

    Here is the logic.

    President Obama was elected in part on his promise to fix the economy and lower unemployment. His first actions in office were based directly on that campaign promise. His own words on the matter were a direct promise that his plan would have a dramatic and positive effect.

    Since that time, none of the promises made have happened. The Obama Stimulus has been and continues to be a complete failure. Yet the White House continues on this path and is unwilling to admit it’s failure, thus moving on to other plans that might have better effect.

    Thus, if we hold the Obama Administration accountable to their own words and proposals, they deserve the negative attention they have earned.

    Seperate of that, you make a falicy. The Bush Administration did not create the recession over 8 years. The total jobs lost were not all solely because of the mortgage crisis and the debt crunch. There was unemployment before all that, which is normal to exist.

  20. Evol,

    The answer is not simply Buy American. That does not resolve the true issue – spending more money than is available. That is the biggest problem facing the economy.

    The national debt is $14 trillion and growing. The Obama Administration has plans for trillion dollar deficits for the rest of his time in office. Since spending cuts are not an option this Administration is concerned about, the main source for the funds to pay the debt is taxes. Increased taxation always results in fewer jobs and higher unemployment. That’s just counter-productive.

    Adding to this problem are the ever increasing number of regulations. This impedes innovation and increases costs of goods. Which says nothing of the cost overages that come from unions.

    Union workers are not bad people. Most understand that. But union management is not the same thing. Their job is to make the most money possible. Thus we have the fact that US cars are priced with $2000 built into the price solely because of union costs. That’s just not competitive.

    The core of the issue, of this article, is that all efforts to improve the economy and lower unemployment have failed to date. Unemployment has not decreased, just the people that are being counted. Yet the Obama Administration, and to a lesser degre Democrats, are using this stat out-of-context to bolster their political standing. Which is deplorable.

    At the same time, a new path to resolve the high unemployment must be taken. Continuing to do the same thing just makes things worse.

Thank you for lending your voice. We appreciate hearing what you have to say.

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