Gallup CEO: 5.6% jobless rate “big lie” created by WH

Sobering truth: 30 million Americans are either out of work or severely underemployed

Jim Clifton, CEO of Gallup, minces no words in his assessment of the official unemployment rate, as reported by the U.S. Department of Labor. Clifton calls it “extremely misleading.”

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

None of them will tell you this: If you, a family member or anyone is unemployed and has subsequently given up on finding a job — if you are so hopelessly out of work that you’ve stopped looking over the past four weeks — the Department of Labor doesn’t count you as unemployed. That’s right. While you are as unemployed as one can possibly be, and tragically may never find work again, you are not counted in the figure we see relentlessly in the news — currently 5.6%. Right now, as many as 30 million Americans are either out of work or severely underemployed. Trust me, the vast majority of them aren’t throwing parties to toast “falling” unemployment.

There’s another reason why the official rate is misleading. Say you’re an out-of-work engineer or healthcare worker or construction worker or retail manager: If you perform a minimum of one hour of work in a week and are paid at least $20 — maybe someone pays you to mow their lawn — you’re not officially counted as unemployed in the much-reported 5.6%. Few Americans know this.

Yet another figure of importance that doesn’t get much press: those working part-time but wanting full-time work. If you have a degree in chemistry or math and are working 10 hours part-time because it is all you can find — in other words, you are severely underemployed — the government doesn’t count you in the 5.6%. Few Americans know this.

There’s no other way to say this. The official unemployment rate, which cruelly overlooks the suffering of the long-term and often permanently unemployed as well as the depressingly underemployed, amounts to a Big Lie.

And it’s a lie that has consequences, because the great American dream is to have a good job, and in recent years, America has failed to deliver that dream more than it has at any time in recent memory. A good job is an individual’s primary identity, their very self-worth, their dignity — it establishes the relationship they have with their friends, community and country. When we fail to deliver a good job that fits a citizen’s talents, training and experience, we are failing the great American dream.

Gallup defines a good job as 30+ hours per week for an organization that provides a regular paycheck. Right now, the U.S. is delivering at a staggeringly low rate of 44%, which is the number of full-time jobs as a percent of the adult population, 18 years and older. We need that to be 50% and a bare minimum of 10 million new, good jobs to replenish America’s middle class.

I hear all the time that “unemployment is greatly reduced, but the people aren’t feeling it.” When the media, talking heads, the White House and Wall Street start reporting the truth — the percent of Americans in good jobs; jobs that are full-time and real — then we will quit wondering why Americans aren’t “feeling” something that doesn’t remotely reflect the reality in their lives. And we will also quit wondering what hollowed out the middle class.”

11 Responses to Gallup CEO: 5.6% jobless rate “big lie” created by WH

  1. Clair Van Steenwyk says:

    The real rate is well over 12% and don’t forget in the last 6 yrs. we’ve had over 7 million Americans retire so they just filled those jobs, didn’t create new ones and even some of them weren’t replaced, so no real recovery and no plans for one. The problem is with all the EPA & OSHA among other Fed & State Dept. Regulations enforced like laws and the US Congress does almost nothing, I say almost nothing because they Fund these Un Constitutional Agencies among many others, this makes those in Congress nothing more than administrators not legislators and then they give us lip service every couple of yrs. to get elected, we need to vote the INCUMBENTS Out or surrender. God Bless You; Van

  2. Kyle Lyles says:

    I have read several excellent reports that don’t appear to be politically motivated, and are just setting the record straight. If you believe them (I do), when considering <32 hrs a week "jobs", we're nearly at 20% unemployment.

    The teen employment participation rate is at 16%, down from 32% in 1990. A lot of reasons drive that, including poor parenting, but much of it is because it is nearly impossible to get a job as a teen.

    This country is screwed by Republican and Democratic politicians. Name one from either party regularly discussing the real statistics. You can't. I am disgusted by McCain & Flake who are trying to give American jobs away to foreigners at both ends of the pay scale. Two hundred years ago, they would be twitching at the end of a noose for being traitors. And yet clueless Arizonans keep electing this kind of trash to "represent" the state.

  3. CD 8 PC says:

    Obama is jimmying the numbers in advance of 2016. This is just the beginning of the economic deception calculated to aid the Democrat nominee.

    Why the silence from the GOP leadership? Who cut out the tongues of the AZ 5? This is a huge issue that underwrites our entire economy.

  4. SmallGovt says:

    I think it is inaccurate but don’t think it is Obama any more than all the others. Under G W Bush you had Mitch McConnell’s wife as Secretary of Commerce and she had no more idea of what was going on than any other Govt Official and could only blather the same talking points again and again.

    We know a lot more people are unemployed and if required to show up every week to get the check it would be very interesting.

  5. AZ Conservative Guy says:

    As Obama gives legal status to illegals, more and more of them will compete with our citizens for fewer and fewer jobs. Construction trades are just one example of the devastating effect of an industry that has been taken over by foreign workers. They will accept less pay as they displace middle-class American workers who have long supported families as they work these backbone trades. Service industry jobs have also gone by the wayside. Hotel and restaurants rarely hire American born workers. This scam permeates all levels of employment. Hospitals now have on-staff doctors who are rarely American born or educated who take over patient care regardless of whether you have your own doctors and insurance. They also work for less pay, but don’t have private practices to staff and maintain.

    When your AZ elected folks send out emails telling you they’ve been endorsed by the Chambers of Commerce, ask them why they accept campaign donations from those who are undercutting the jobs of the very voters they need to put them back in office. See what kind of answer you get. They all welcome the Chambers and the big bucks they drop into their campaign accounts.

    Wake up people!! Hold your reps accountable. This is serious business. How will you explain your complacency to your children when they ask why America was allowed to falter? Will you tell them how much you enjoyed the Super Bowl and how you were too busy to become active in fighting this dishonest, politically correct and socialist monstrosity?

    • State Delegate says:

      Good point AZ Conservative Guy! We need to hold ALL of them accountable. First, stop standing and applauding them when they simply walk onstage and take a microphone. They put their pants on one leg at a time, just as we do. Thanks to us, they make higher salaries and have perks most of us can only dream of. We have every right to get straight answers from them. They need to have the hard questions posed to them and we must demand more than the equivocal and practiced answers they are so proficient at giving us. I’m damn tired of being slicked by the slicksters Republican and Democrat alike. I’ve been active in the AZ Republican Party for years, but disillusionment best describes my attitude today. After sweeping the US House and Senate and winning all statewide offices, we are still getting screwed. The reason is simple….they are mostly RINOs, who campaign as conservatives and have zero regard for truth or the lowly home folks.

      • SmallGovt says:

        Absolutely, do not applaud or look at awe toward your public servants. Insure they are not getting rich off the job or setting themselves up for later from your taxes. Ask why they are receiving benefits the average taxpayer does not and who authorized it (and what they get). For elected officials never allow them to have unlimited terms or receive taxpayer paid pensions. It is not even a Republican /Democrat ./Independent thing. It is a citizen thing.

  6. Anna Gaines says:

    The current White House resident (Obama) will go down in the History of the USA as the biggest liar ever!

  7. ZOO says:

    Here’s a snip of an “action alert” I received today from CAPS (Californians For Population Stabilization). You may recall CAPS ran TV ads in Arizona a year or so ago ripping the gizzard out of John McCain – in a non-election year.

    “…Workers at Southern California Edison are justifiably “beyond furious” at being replaced with H-1B workers!…”

    “…Southern California Edison (SCE) is laying off hundreds of American tech workers and replacing them with H-1B visa holders from India. To add insult to injury, some employees are required to train their own replacements…”

    Take action…..contact your representatives (link)

  8. LEO IN TSN says:

    The AZ5, you ask?—nothing but silence from the AZ5? You will never hear any of the AZ5 in the public eye talking about saving US. They will rant at a state meeting perhaps, to an audience that is half captive and half McTraitor, or talk to a local radio microphone when noone is listening and noone is challenging them, but they will never call for action on the national or international scene.

    If you hadn’t realized already, the AZ5 are all big-gov’t globalists, working hard to cement their positions in the Ruling Elite. They are making millions of dollars at their meagerly-paid congressional jobs, using magic and sleight-of-hand. They have no desire nor incentive to protect the little folk, the sheeple who keep them in office without challenge, the slaves who support their expanding gov’t with ever higher taxes and whose progeny are being educated into slavery in gov’t schools.

    The AZ5 are busy formulating their stealth AMNESTY and obamaocare plans that will destroy AZ and enslave US permanently. They give obamao everything he needs to “transform” US, and know that the sheeple will just go along blindly. While they can be elected by hi-dollar media campaigns of lies and never have their records scrutinized, we will be governed by chameleons, etch-a-sketch politicians who slither around DC in hordes sucking the life out of the little folk. Welcome to AZ Herpetology 101, illustrations courtesy of the AZ5. Many AZ PC’s have been blinded by the DC glitter of these snakes, and our AZ McGOP has been hijacked again, because reality is just too scary. Well, freedom just ain’t free – you gotta fight for it continually (a paraphrase from many great American heroes over time). Surrendering just don’t get it done. A good start might be to send the AZ5 to the unemployment line.

    God bless America.

  9. SmallGovt says:

    What is absolutely amazing, and no one but Senator Sessions brings it up is the support of immigration by BLACKS who have the highest unemployment rate and readily start protests over this. Unless they really want a check for nothing, they lose more than anyone by every illegal or sponsored alien coming into the country.