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Old 11-29-2010, 02:15 AM
 
5,643 posts, read 9,947,875 times
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For those who believe unemployment numbers are somehow incorrect, how should we deal with the following issues in counting the unemployed? What other conditions could be brought up which makes counting the unemployed nearly impossible?

1. Underemployed people. Those who can only get part time work, but want full time work. But isn't this sometimes wishful thinking? Besides aren't some part time workers part time by choice? How do you count these?

2. Underpaid people. Those who work at a job under their needed or desired wage. But doesn't 90% of the population claim they are not paid enough? This one is far too dicey to even fathom a calculation.

3. Those too discouraged to look for work. I feel for them, but how can you count someone as unemployed if they aren't even trying? What if someone decides to take a few months off now for the holidays and get back to it in January, should they be part of the calcuation? Not to mention there are usually some estimates of how big a pool of people this is so one could count them, albeit with dubious accuracy, anyways.

4. Those out of work due to seasonal issues. These people do make it to the unemployment rolls, but in many cases they will be hired again in the future. Don't they inflate the numbers even with "seasonal" adjustments?

5. Those out of work because of lacking needed skills. These are a real problem and are generally counted, but they seem candidates for 1, 2 and 3. In our economy today this core of problematic unemployed seem like a real issue, but how can we effectively count them if they don't want to learn new skills or don't accept being part of the #2 group?
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Old 11-29-2010, 05:06 AM
 
13 posts, read 50,094 times
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What the hell do you want to say?

Could you be more straightaway?
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Old 11-29-2010, 07:33 AM
 
Location: Ohio
22,798 posts, read 16,061,040 times
Reputation: 19294
Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy702 View Post
1. Underemployed people. Those who can only get part time work, but want full time work. But isn't this sometimes wishful thinking? Besides aren't some part time workers part time by choice? How do you count these?
You BOLO'd the definition of "underemployed." Underemployment is verified in different ways:

1) You have an MBA but can't find a job as an MBA and are making fish tacos at street stand because it's the only job you can find; or

2) You have been a MIG/TIG Welder for the last 12 years, your employer folded and now the only work you can find is being a greeter at Wal*Mart and the $16/hour pay cut that comes with working at Wal*Mart; or

3) You have a degree and experience as a software engineer for the last 20 years and now you're a data-entry clerk working through a temp agency earning 1/8th of your previous salary.

These people are also "dislocated workers" and when applying for benefits or job re-training programs sponsored by the federal, state or county governments, like JPTA have to verify their education or work history to qualify as dislocated. Note that the government agencies also have access to certain SSA files, like for example they can how many employers you've had over your life-time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy702 View Post
2. Underpaid people. Those who work at a job under their needed or desired wage. But doesn't 90% of the population claim they are not paid enough? This one is far too dicey to even fathom a calculation.
You're making that up as you go along as that has never been a consideration for determining unemployment in the history of the US.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy702 View Post
3. Those too discouraged to look for work. I feel for them, but how can you count someone as unemployed if they aren't even trying?
You are unemployed if you meet all of the following criteria:

1) You want employment (note that retirees and others don't); and

2) You are available for work (note that people in prison aren't -- which is why the prison population is no longer counted as "unemployed); and

3) You are actively seeking employment (and that is defined by applying for at least two position each month).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy702 View Post
4. Those out of work due to seasonal issues. These people do make it to the unemployment rolls, but in many cases they will be hired again in the future. Don't they inflate the numbers even with "seasonal" adjustments?
Those people are counted as unemployed per se, and the BLS does take into account seasonal and non-seasonal employment and separately identifies them. Note that many of the seasonally employed also have full time employment (or they may be underemployed or employed part-time).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy702 View Post
5. Those out of work because of lacking needed skills.
Well, now you're making things up, again.

That is not an issue for unemployment and in any event, it's a Market Economics issue. If you want to interfere in the Market; you will be gently corrected by the Inviolable Laws of Economics. Some examples in recent history:

1) Key-punch operators made $14/hour (the equivalent today of $45/hour) until high-schools started offering courses in key-punch operation flooding the market with key-operators and driving wages down to $2.35/hour (minimum wage at the time). Home computers did the rest of the damage.

2) Book-keepers made nice wages and book-keeping was a nice part-time job for house-wives who could work 16 to 20 hours per week and earn $10/hour without a college degree. Thanks to public schools who started teaching book-keeping, the market was flooded with book-keepers in the mid-to-late 1970s driving wages down to $5/hour (still a nice wage in 1980). The poor quality of book-keepers cranked out by the public schools resulted in employers insisting that book-keepers have college degrees.

3) Data-entry also was a respectable paying job until public schools flooded market with data-entry operators driving wages down to just about minimum wage.

4) OTR truck drivers earned $60,000/year until the Reagan Administration allowed student loans to be used at driving schools which flooded the market with drivers knocking wages down to $25,000/year.

The point is government should stay out of the job-training business since the only thing government does is corral people into a set of job skills in a market flooded with competitors who drive wages down and ultimately the skills become both unattractive and useless.
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Old 11-29-2010, 08:35 AM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,661 posts, read 78,822,139 times
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Let's just stop measuring it, and have a universal pool from which everyone receives a salary even if there no job that needs to be done at the moment. Adjust revenue so that there is always enough in the pool.

Unless you can continue to justify an economy in which the national profit is divided up among the number of people required to generate it, with none left there for the rest of us.
The farmer who starves his idle mule in the winter will have no-one to pull the plow in the spring.
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Old 11-29-2010, 02:43 PM
 
4,724 posts, read 3,785,921 times
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It's amazing that so many people are attempting to make their complaining sound as though they are really interested in seeking solutions to our most pressing social problems. The OP is obviously gunning for some agreement with his not so hidden contention that any way we slice it unemployment figures must be inflated due to faulty computation models. The sorry truth of the matter is that the data provided by the BLS is usually supporting for a lower number of unemployed because that's the expedient nature of political denial.
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Old 11-29-2010, 04:08 PM
 
86,870 posts, read 84,258,436 times
Reputation: 62604
Quote:
Originally Posted by Willy702 View Post
For those who believe unemployment numbers are somehow incorrect, how should we deal with the following issues in counting the unemployed? What other conditions could be brought up which makes counting the unemployed nearly impossible?

1. Underemployed people. Those who can only get part time work, but want full time work. But isn't this sometimes wishful thinking? Besides aren't some part time workers part time by choice? How do you count these?

2. Underpaid people. Those who work at a job under their needed or desired wage. But doesn't 90% of the population claim they are not paid enough? This one is far too dicey to even fathom a calculation.

3. Those too discouraged to look for work. I feel for them, but how can you count someone as unemployed if they aren't even trying? What if someone decides to take a few months off now for the holidays and get back to it in January, should they be part of the calcuation? Not to mention there are usually some estimates of how big a pool of people this is so one could count them, albeit with dubious accuracy, anyways.

4. Those out of work due to seasonal issues. These people do make it to the unemployment rolls, but in many cases they will be hired again in the future. Don't they inflate the numbers even with "seasonal" adjustments?

5. Those out of work because of lacking needed skills. These are a real problem and are generally counted, but they seem candidates for 1, 2 and 3. In our economy today this core of problematic unemployed seem like a real issue, but how can we effectively count them if they don't want to learn new skills or don't accept being part of the #2 group?
dont forget those that just want to collect unemployment until it runs out and then they will take a job. as well as those collecting un-employment and working off the books. we have a load of those here in nyc.
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Old 11-29-2010, 09:00 PM
 
136 posts, read 447,956 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
dont forget those that just want to collect unemployment until it runs out and then they will take a job. as well as those collecting un-employment and working off the books. we have a load of those here in nyc.

when they run out of UP there will be no job This is only the start . they will be cut off


They will never get rid of welfare though
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Old 11-30-2010, 12:13 AM
 
5,643 posts, read 9,947,875 times
Reputation: 5009
Quote:
Originally Posted by jertheber View Post
It's amazing that so many people are attempting to make their complaining sound as though they are really interested in seeking solutions to our most pressing social problems. The OP is obviously gunning for some agreement with his not so hidden contention that any way we slice it unemployment figures must be inflated due to faulty computation models. The sorry truth of the matter is that the data provided by the BLS is usually supporting for a lower number of unemployed because that's the expedient nature of political denial.
Not at all. Just wanted an open discussion on the matter. Some claim its understated, some claim its overstated and others just plain complain about anything the government says claiming its all lies. Wanted some more depth on the possibilities out there. I think unemployment is merely a statistic subject to the rules set for it, but there probably are other issues buried in that count which should be better discussed and understood.
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Old 11-30-2010, 12:30 AM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,661 posts, read 78,822,139 times
Reputation: 36346
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mircea View Post

That is not an issue for unemployment and in any event, it's a Market Economics issue. If you want to interfere in the Market; you will be gently corrected by the Inviolable Laws of Economics.
Your Inviolable Laws of Economics are no more set in stone then the Iron Law of Oligarchy. We are proceeding apace along the path to Oligarchy, and the laws of economics get manipulated by the oligarchs, who are already manifest among us. Ample evidence of that is already visible.

Use your own imagination to picture the various economic and labor scenarios that will evolve as we proceed in that direction. Their corrections do not appear to be gentle at all, to those for whom the only good job they will ever have has already come and gone.
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Old 11-30-2010, 01:36 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
27,380 posts, read 45,553,234 times
Reputation: 31744
Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
dont forget those that just want to collect unemployment until it runs out and then they will take a job. as well as those collecting un-employment and working off the books. we have a load of those here in nyc.
I would ...
It WOULD be legit to include those who fell off the unemployment roles or were never eligible due to employment law, powerful employment lawyers protecting big business, and the inaccessibility to jobs within 20% of previous pay range. There are certainly equal numbers in that realm as the under reported stats coming from a system that is governed by professional politicians who are MUCH more publicity minded than business minded.
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