Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The truth about the economy

So-called mainstream media at all levels are heavily invested in seeing President Obama re-elected in 2012, having carried the water for him so egregiously in 2008, and they know the economy is his Achilles' heel. So they're plenty eager to unquestioningly trumpet on their front pages or lead their newscasts with made-to-order administration statistics that suggest a budding recovery.

Lest anyone suffer from irrational exuberance, however, the folks at offer a sobering 50-point assessment of just how troubled this economy still is. The top 10 points:

#1 A staggering 48 percent of all Americans are either considered to be "low income" or are living in poverty.

#2 Approximately 57 percent of all children in the United States are living in homes that are either considered to be "low income" or impoverished.

#3 If the number of Americans that "wanted jobs" was the same today as it was back in 2007, the "official" unemployment rate put out by the U.S. government would be up to 11 percent.

#4 The average amount of time that a worker stays unemployed in the United States is now over 40 weeks.

#5 One recent survey found that 77 percent of all U.S. small businesses do not plan to hire any more workers.

#6 There are fewer payroll jobs in the United States today than there were back in 2000 even though we have added 30 million extra people to the population since then.

#7 Since December 2007, median household income in the United States has declined by a total of 6.8% once you account for inflation.

#8 According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 16.6 million Americans were self-employed back in December 2006. Today, that number has shrunk to 14.5 million.

#9 A Gallup poll from earlier this year found that approximately one out of every five Americans that do have a job consider themselves to be underemployed.

#10 According to author Paul Osterman, about 20 percent of all U.S. adults are currently working jobs that pay poverty-level wages.
Meanwhile, the chief of the International Monetary Fund warns that the world's economy "stands at a very dangerous juncture."

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