Yup, that's right ladies and gentlemen, the Ministry of Truth has just announced that the unemployment rate has dipped below that nasty 9 percent level for the first time in 22 months. Woohoo! I love Big Brother! I love Big Brother! Per the Ministry:
"Nonfarm payroll employment increased by 192,000 in February, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 8.9 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Job gains occurred in manufacturing, construction, professional and business services, health care, and transportation and warehousing."
Interesting how the "headline" unemployment rate has plummeted from 9.8% in November of 2010 to 8.9% in March of 2011. In as little as four months we have seen unemployment plummet by almost 1%. What an amazing job the government is doing!
Here is an excerpt from George Orwell's 1984:
a trumpet call floated from the telescreen just above their heads. However, it was not the proclamation of a military victory this time, but merely an announcement from the Ministry of Plenty.
'Comrades!' cried an eager youthful voice. 'Attention, comrades! We have glorious news for you. We have won the battle for production! Returns now completed of the output of all classes of consumption goods show that the standard of living has risen by no less than 20 per cent over the past year. All over Oceania this morning there were irrepressible spontaneous demonstrations when workers marched out of factories and offices and paraded through the streets with banners voicing their gratitude to Big Brother for the new, happy life which his wise leadership has bestowed upon us. Here are some of the completed figures. Foodstuffs-'
The phrase 'our new, happy life' recurred several times. It had been a favourite of late with the Ministry of Plenty. Parsons, his attention caught by the trumpet call, sat listening with a sort of gaping solemnity, a sort of edified boredom. He could not follow the figures, but he was aware that they were in some way a cause for satisfaction. He had lugged out a huge and filthy pipe which was already half full of charred tobacco. With the tobacco ration at 100 grammes a week it was seldom possible to fill a pipe to the top. Winston was smoking a Victory Cigarette which he held carefully horizontal. The new ration did not start till tomorrow and he had only four cigarettes left. For the moment he had shut his ears to the remoter noises and was listening to the stuff that streamed out of the telescreen. It appeared that there had even been demonstrations to thank Big Brother for raising the chocolate ration to twenty grammes a week. And only yesterday, he reflected, it had been announced that the ration was to be reduced to twenty grammes a week. Was it possible that they could swallow that, after only twenty-four hours? Yes, they swallowed it.
When I see reports proclaiming that unemployment has fallen from 9.8% to 8.9% within 3 months, given the current economic environment, I think about 1984. Although the Department of Labor claims 8.9% as the new unemployment rate, the labor participation rate continues to plummet. Every month, the labor force drops as people are no longer counted as being employed once they fall off the unemployment insurance rolls.
Observe the precipitous drop in the labor force participation rate:
Also observe data on civilians not in the labor force:
It appears that lying is the norm while truth is the exception. Whether its wall street, the government, corporations, law schools or the media, bullshit reigns while the truth gets shit on. Thankfully, due to the blogosphere, some truth can reach those who yearn for it, as opposed to the masses who love getting spoon fed the coolaid being pumped out by the mainstream media at a rapid pace.
The true unemployment rate, when accounting for underemployed and long term unemployed is anywhere between 17% to 22%. A bit of research on the web will educate you as to how the real numbers would be if the government utilized true data and not bullshit out of thin air.
One last note. I woke up this morning at 3:30 am due to a terrible migraine headache. Thus, I was up before the huge announcement. While watching the "pre-game" show on CNBC I was listening to all these talking heads talk about their forecasts and projections as to what the new rate would be and how many new jobs the country would add. In my mind I figured that the new headline number would be below 9%, given all the political bickering. Lo and behold a few hours later the report was published and my guess was right.