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February 11, 2012 - Rick Burdt
Lately I’ve been accused of cherry picking data so I decided to see if I could find some examples of cherry picking in the current administration. I took a closer look at the latest unemployment data put out by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the same data President Obama used to come up with the 8.3% unemployment figure for January, and found some interesting things.
I will state for a FACT that the 8.3% does not include everyone who is unemployed. According to their own report, the actual number of unemployed is as high as 16.2%. Please follow the links I’ve included.
The 8.3% does not include the “marginally attached”. I was going to try to explain what the definition of “marginally attached” is but I figured I would let the report mentioned above speak for itself. The following is cut/pasted from the BLS website:
“Among the marginally attached, there were 1.1 million discouraged workers in January, little different from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) Discouraged workers are persons not currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them. The remaining 1.7 million persons marginally attached to the labor force in January had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey for reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities.”
If you use the BLS website's glossary, it further states that anyone who has been unemployed for more than 12 months falls into the category of marginally attached. Under the right set of circumstances, the number of people unemployed could increase, but by using this system, you could show an unemployment decrease.
What really makes me laugh is the last sentence where it states 1.7 million didn't even look for work due school attendance or family responsibilities. Call me crazy, which I'm pretty sure some of you do, but I always thought providing for your family, in the form of a job, was a pretty responsible thing to do.
This system of reporting unemployment data is not new, it began in 1994 during the Clinton administration.
I understand it's tough to find a job out there. It took my son almost two weeks to find a pretty decent job with benefits.
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