Unemployment numbers optimistic while many Americans not "gainfully" employed
There has been much attention given to recent unemployment statistics. The Los Angeles Times' reporter Pat Benson reported that "Economists say claims need to drop to no more than 375,000 for a sustained period to make a dent in the unemployment rate, which fell to 8.5% in December, the lowest in nearly three years." However, this statistic that seems somewhat optimistic, is based on incomplete data, and a lack of accounting for real world situations and circumstances that the work force faces.
There are a great number of working young people in this country that although they retain some form of employment, they do not bring home enough money to pay all of their living expenses, not to mention have anything left over to save for their retirement. The numbers of people who are "under" employed are rarely taken into account when mentioned on the political pulpit, or in the corporate dominated media.
When this kind of data is compiled, they almost never factor in such variables as scale of pay versus living expenses for a given region. This is a significant factor since it is estimated by the United States Department of Labor that although the much touted unemployment rate as of January 2012 is at 8.5%, there are factors such as a mien salary base, where although an individual is employed, they do not make enough money to pay their weekly, monthly or yearly living expenses. This is a prevalent situation in a vast expanse of young workers in the United States. Do to their short work histories, which translates into a lack of experience, and often a lack of on the job problem solving skills, employers often base the salary of younger workers below that of what is necessary in a given region to pay for housing, fuel, electricity, medical coverage, food, clothing, personal hygiene products and a nominal amount for "incidentals"
The New York Daily News reported that there were 24,000 new unemployment claims that the paper attributed to post holiday unwinding of seasonal jobs “The holidays exaggerated the strength of the economy and now we’re back to reality,” said Milton Ezrati, senior economist at money management firm Lord Abbett & Co.
The reality is that employment is not the only problem. It's gainful employment many Americans are lacking. When politicians (especially those on the campaign trail) speak about "getting Americans back to work". The media in this country often talks about how the unemployment rate has "some people" optimistic. The "some people" they are referring to, certainly can't be the 20 year old young women working in a fast food restaurant making $300.00 a week before taxes who has a $750.00 dollar rent, $260.00 car payment, and $100.00 phone bill. It most definitely couldn't be the college student taking 18 credit courses for 8 hours a day then going to work for 8 more hours just to find him or herself $8000 in debt by the end of the year. The "some people" often talked about as the wise one's who shall not be named, (most often by the commentators at Fox News) could not be those who struggle in a job that doesn't pay enough to support them and their families, nor can they find a job that will.Continued on the next page