Unemployment Really 59%!! Using Federal Figures

An email forwarded to me with screen shots from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which will be shown below, proves conclusively that the government is manipulating job numbers in order to claim that unemployment is down to 6.3 percent.


  1. Hunker-Down says:

    We are in the early stages of a major depression. What will it take to wake up the cell phone junkies to what is about to happen to us?
    Next is hyperinflation. I’ll bet they notice that.

  2. I agree that we in the USA are going thru a rough time, & things look likely to get worse. I don’t believe the 6.3% unemployment number. I live in an area w/ about double the nat’l poverty rate w/ lots of unskilled or low-skilled workers. But I also don’t believe the 59% unemployed number. It appears that both sides are playing w/ the numbers. Go ahead & criticize my opinion. Please note: Again, I agree that we’re heading for a depression that will make the so-called Great Recession look like mild child’s play.

  3. Bam Bam says:

    I agree with RedC–there’s no way unemployment is at 59 percent. We’ve known for years that the feds have been manipulating unemployment figures. If your not eligible for unemployment compensation, you are not unemployed. That’s about the long and the short of it. What we really need is the number of working aged adults without jobs. I would imagine that figure is about 22 percent right now–higher for low skill workers, lower for white collar professions.

    • Hunker-Down says:

      What if the number of months of coverage were cut in half? Suddenly half of the recipients (using a bell curve) would be classified as ‘not unemployed’. I say they are unemployed.

      How can we prove that the government numbers used in the video are false?

      • Hunker-Down says:

        Exile1981 just highlighted the fuzzy math used in the video. I think I made the same mistake several times in math class.

  4. Exile1981 says:

    What follows is a comment I made on another site about why that 59% number is very wrong, the person didn’t do the calculation correctly and so I redid the math and while it is much higher than the admin claims it is also well below 59%.

    “The bureau noted that the civilian labor force dropped by 806,000 last month”
    This is the number of people they moved from unemployed to not-looking for work and that is why the pretend numbers dropped.
    The BLS unemployment rate that they normally quote is called the headline rate and is based on unemployed divided by the total able to work force; so using the above numbers:
    Unemployment of 6.3% is 9.8 million / 155.421 million
    Now I happen to think that number is a joke because to get it they dropped about 1 million from the unemployed amount because they gave up working or their benefits ran out. So counting those people dropped since jan 2014 gives us 11.460 million unemployed or a rate of 7.4%, which is what it was across all of 2013 (averaged for the year);
    Now if you look at the BLS own numbers the labour participation rate has dropped 3.2% during Obamas presidency http://www.bls.gov/web/empsit/
    And also that 733,000 jobs where lost in April http://data.bls.gov/timeseries
    I like to look at the number of people who left the work force or lost benefits during the Obama war on the middle class and use that to calculate the unemployment. You have to go through huge sets of numbers and even then the BLS keeps changing it to adjust for population controls (ie how they calculate the who is looking or not looking for work). So based on that the number of unemployed is somewhere between 9 and 45 million. Seriously the numbers they give are adjusted just about monthly so there is no way to be sure of the real numbers but it looks like about 10.3 million have given up looking between 2009 and 2013 so that would be 10.3 + 9.8 unemployed to give you a rate of 12.9%
    Though like I said I have seen reports that the numbers who have left the workforce because of giving up is is closer to 30 million than the 10.3 I get from the BLS numbers. In which case the rate is 25.%
    What your quoting with the 59% is the employment population ratio (EPR) and your reading it backwards, in that it’s 59% of the population is working not unemployed. http://data.bls.gov/timeseries… and the BLS gives that as 58.9%, so just about your 59% and it is a better number for somethings than the unemployment numbers. Unfortunately the EPR includes everyone not in an institution, so it includes retired people, those in college or university and those who choose not to work and it’s everyone age 16+ so even high school kids with less than full time employment get counted. Historically it has been below 60% since Obama took office and the previous times it has been this low is before 1985. So it’s an indicator but not a unemployment number and they way the writer calculated it is counting retired people and students as unemployed rather than not participating.

    • Sideliner 1950 says:

      Exile1981: I for one thank you very much for weighing in. The “59%” number gets people’s attention (mine, certainly); and grates on those who seek to “cover up” the truth by understating real unemployment figures. I am more inclined to accept your figure; and for purposes of this reply, without personally verifying your numbers, I do accept your result as “correct”.

      Though the “59%” number may be a (gross?) overstatement, the underlying premise of the article – that we are still being lied to about the extent of unemployment – is borne out and confirmed by the results you derived with your “correct” calculation methodology.

      Those seeking to deflect our skepticism on this subject would/will attempt to discredit the remaining truth of the article simply by discrediting the (unfortunately) faulty methodology that yielded the “59%” number; but your work here prevents the baby from being thrown out with the bathwater. Well done.

      • Exile1981 says:

        Thanks Sideliner

        I know we are being lied too, my concern is that if we all start quoting the 59% number it will make us look crazy because it’s EPR not the unemployment. So its not a faulty calculation it’s just not what they say it is. Kind of like saying your shotgun holds 10 rounds because you happen to have a glock mag that holds ten rounds.

        The EPR is important but you have to say it’s the EPR not the unemployment number.

        I spent 4 hours going through the monthly numbers from the BLS and came out annoyed by how hard they make it to find the raw numbers of people they moved to the not looking category. If you add them all up it looks like 10.3 million have vanished from being counted since 2009. Or you could look at the change in the BLS to get an idea of how many how left the work force, which gives you a number of nearly 18 million, but how many of those retired or took early retirement? So it’s a number but a bad one. The 30 million number I have seen is from a think tank and they never published how they came up with that 30 million. I’d go with the 10.3 million I worked out rather than the higher 18 or 30 mil number.

        I want to add that none of these numbers account for the welfare recipients. People on welfare don’t count as employed or unemployed they count in the not looking category.
        So according to gov’t stats 4% http://statisticbrain.com/welfare-statistics/ are on welfare. you could count them in the unemployed numbers but the problem is then that you could be double counting. As some who gave up search for work could be on welfare now.

        Official numbers are
        9.8 million unemployed
        12.8 million on welfare
        46.7 million on food stamps
        155.421 million working full or part time

        let those numbers sink in for a minute, but some people could be in more than one of those categories. Also what percentage of those employed are working full time or making a living wage?

        Look at this study by the gov’t http://www.census.gov/prod/2013pubs/acsbr12-02.pdf now look at the median income changes from 2000-2011 and notice that 9 states plus DC had median incomes rise, every where else went down. Also notice the average income in DC rose by 23% and realize that a large number of those incomes are gov’t workers getting paid by your taxes.

        • themem says:

          Exile1981- thank you for clarifying the situation and for calculating the numbers better than I have seen elsewhere. Also, your explanation of how you derived the data is commendable. I fir one am tired of the government’s “lies, damn lies, and statistics, ” but do not want to be categorized as a whack job by using outrageously skewed data that has appeared on some other sites. Thank you – I appreciate your efforts.

          • Exile1981 says:

            Ok I started looking at the way the unemployment rate is calculated in other countries out of curiosity and found out that

            In Canada everyone over 15 is included in the possible pool of workers and in the US it’s those 16+.

            In the US and Canada to be considered unemployed they ask nearly identical questions when the do the phone survey of homes. The ask age and they ask if you worked to earn money in the previous week then if you said no they ask if you looked for work. This is where the two nations are different:

            In the US to be counted as unemployed rather than not looking you have to actively gone looking for work and or had an interview. That means if you read want ads in the paper or submitted your resume through an on-line service or search the internet for work you are not counted as unemployed you are counted as not looking.
            In Canada those passive or online methods are counted as looking which makes you unemployed.

            Several economists in Canada have said that the quickest way to get their unemployment rate down would be to calculate it the same way as the US does, which would drop it about 2%.

            From what I can find the EU has switched to the same formula as the US; but the US used to use the same definition of looking for work as Canada but it was changed at some previous point.

  5. JeffintheWest says:

    Completely agree — we are being lied to constantly about the state of the economy in order to continue the status quo and increase government control. When everyone is finally reliant on government for the very food they eat to live, then the government will control them completely. Why else would they be cracking down on people who grow their own food?

  6. draq wraith says:

    Hate statistics you can make any number up you want and its right.
    I think they omit the disabled, the poor, the unemployed that lost benefits, the underemployed and others who want to work but cannot get employment.

  7. Hunker-Down says:

    Statistics are revolting to me. IMHO it is a numerical method of twisting logic and truth: a way to manufacture lies.

    When honesty and ethics are prime objectives, a statistical methodology can be put to good use. There was a small period of time in our history when that was the usual case. I’m sure there are several schools that strive to build that foundation under their future number crunchers but when those students become involved with American business it is striped away by their handlers.

    The moral rot in our society today has driven the use of stats into the dirt.

  8. Hunker-Down says:

    I am retired. I am unemployed. I cant afford $10 a day in gas to knock on doors so I search online and the local paper but that counts as ‘not looking for work’. I do hard labor at home, as many of us on this blog do, to reduce expenses and put food on the table, but that counts as ‘not looking for work’.

    How many are forced into the retired category because they cant find a job?

    How many classified as retired are eating cat food? It may be in our future.

    Statistically I don’t exist as a worker or as a potential worker. I wish the IRS saw it the same way as the BLS.

  9. People, you’re missing the point. The unemployment rate isn’t a lie. Like all statistics, there was a purpose for its creation. You have to understand who it was designed for. The unemployment rate tells business people how easy it is to find new people to hire. This helps them decide how hard to try to hold on to the people they already have. They don’t care why people aren’t looking for work, if they don’t have applicants for job openings, they’re in trouble.

    Where the lie comes in is misusing the statistic for a purpose other than what it was intended, e.g. as a general indicator of economic health.

  10. Nemoseto says:

    unemployment in my state has started hammering down on the unemployed, if you have an expected return to work date (temporary lay off with an expected return) you have it a little easier, if you have nothing expected then you have to have detailed records of your work search showing at least 3 days a week spent on searching. if you don’t find one in 6 weeks they refer you to jobs meeting your qualifications. someone I know had been refered a minimum wage janitor position in a city 100 miles away from where he lived. he didn’t take it because it didn’t even pay enough to cover the cost of gas to drive, unemployment office ended payments/benefits on the ground that he refused a job he was qualified for. no longer counted as unemployed and the state didn’t have to pay a cent more.

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