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Unemployment Below Nine Percent? Really?

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Yesterday (December 2, 2011) the MSM gleefully reported that the national unemployment rate for November was “only” 8.6 percent. It took some chicanery to get the rate that low. I believe it was Ronald Reagan who said, “It’s not what people don’t know that is the problem, it’s what they know that is not correct.” But regardless of who said it, the quote captures the attitude that the MSM and this administration is trying to advance.

President Barack Obama said yesterday that the economy added 120,000 jobs in November, and that the unemployment rate dropped from 9 percent to 8.6 percent. He called that an ‘improvement.” There were 140,000 private sector jobs created, but government lost 20,000 jobs. The rate drop was accomplished because some 315,000 people had given up looking for work in November and were not counted as unemployed. The rest of this NPR article tries to put a positive spin on the rate drop. But Kathy Bostjancic, director of macroeconomic analysis at The Conference Board, wrote, “These modest job gains are still not enough to propel economic growth to a sustainable 2 percent growth path. And while consumer sentiment is not as gloomy as this past summer, it remains quite low this holiday season.” No economic data that shows 315,000 Americans giving up and dropping out of the workforce can be called an improvement.

From Portal Seven we learn there are six unemployment rates, named U1 through U6:

  • U1 is the percentage of the labor force that has been unemployed 15 weeks or longer. Over 40 percent of the unemployed have been out of work for 6 months or more. Last month, (November), it was 5.1 percent and was 3.1 percent when Obama took office.
  • U2 is the percentage of the labor force who lost jobs or completed temporary work, workers who were involuntarily fired or laid off from their jobs. Again, in November it was 4.9 percent and was 4.8 percent when Obama took office.
  • U3 is the official unemployment rate as per the International Labour Organization (ILO) definition, the proportion of the civilian labor force that is unemployed but actively seeking employment. This is the rate reported by the MSM. In November it was 8.6 percent and was 7.7 percent when Obama took office.
  • U4 is comprised of U3 plus “discouraged workers,” or those who have stopped looking for work because current economic conditions make them believe that no work is available for them. In November, it was 9.3 percent and was 8.2 percent when Obama took office.
  • U5 is comprised of U3 plus U4 plus other “marginally attached workers,” or “loosely attached workers,” or those who “would like” and are able to work, but have not looked for work recently. U5 was 10.2 percent in November, and was 9.0 percent when Obama took office.
  • U6 is comprised of U3 plus U4 plus U5 plus part time workers who want to work full time, but cannot due to economic reasons. This measure of unemployment is the most comprehensive measure of labor resource unemployment available. The U6 unemployment rate counts people without work seeking full-time employment (the U-3 rate), but also counts marginally attached workers and those working part-time. Marginally attached workers include those who have gotten discouraged and stopped looking for work, but still want to work. This rate group reached 15.6 percent in November,  and was 14.0 percent when Obama took office.

The labor force is defined as the civilian (non-military) non-institutionalized population 16 years old and over. Those not looking for a job are counted as not in the labor force.

The MSM reports the U3 rate, but totally ignores the other five rates, particularly the U6 rate. And the MSM wonders why it continues to lose audience. Isn’t it amazing how the true picture can emerge with just a little research?


  • Arch Conservative

    I’m sure when thousands of people get temporary seasonal jobs working at the mall for six dollars an hour King Barry and his merry band of court jesters will be singing the praises of his economic genius. Debbie Wasserman Schultz will probably have her ugly mug all over the boob tube talking about how great the economy is. [edited]

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Here goes ol’ Warren again.

    Again and again and again he points out the difference between the unemployment rate now and the unemployment rate when Obama took office.

    Anyone with half a brain who had been paying attention would know that “when Obama took office” we were losing 700,000 jobs per month…and because Obama didn’t snap his fingers and wave a wand to make it all better within two days what the previous occupant took eight years to screw up, well, THAT means that Obama’s just worthless, don’t it?

    Obama faced the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression AND two wars when he took office, and has since dealt with the most obstructionist Congress since the Civil War…

    …so gee whiz, why wasn’t Obama able to get anything done?

    He did, actually – because by August 2009 we were officially OUT of the recession. Here’s some edjimication for you, Warren:

    Again now, let’s step back and review the facts. Twenty-one months, straight, of private-sector job growth. This comes after eight million jobs lost in a recession that was in full blown when this president was sworn into office. A recession, that we now know, was contracting the economy, shrinking the economy by almost 9%, when he was taking office, when he was getting sworn in. The record since then has been one of stopping the bleeding, arresting the free-fall of our economy, preventing the second Great Depression in American history, and putting us back on a course towards economic growth and job creation. The problem, as you know, is the hole was so deep, that this recession caused and the job loss so significant that even though we’re now at nearly three million jobs created, private sector jobs created, since positive job growth began, that’s not nearly enough when you’ve lost eight million jobs in a terrible recession.

    NOTE THE TWENTY-ONE STRAIGHT MONTHS OF PRIVATE-SECTOR GROWTH, Warren. The only significant losses we’ve had for nearly two years now is in the public sector – THAT, sir, is what’s keeping the unemployment rate up!

    THE CONSERVATIVES NOW HAVE MOST OF WHAT THEY’VE EVER WANTED – hundreds of thousands of public sector jobs have been cut, unions have been largely emasculated, our banking system is STILL largely deregulated (Dodd-Frank not being nearly what Glass-Steagal was), and under Obama Americans have had the lowest overall tax burdens in SIXTY YEARS – lower than under ANY Republican president since Hoover!

    So…if conservative doctrine was right (deregulation, fewer public-sector jobs, lower taxes), then WHY isn’t our economy booming? Could it be that conservative dogma is wrong?

    Oh, no, NEVER could that be possible! Maybe it’s, oh, no, it MUST be…there’s DEMOCRATS in charge of the Senate and the White House – so it doesn’t matter that the conservatives already have most of what they’ve always wanted, nothing will ever go right until they have EVERYTHING they ever wanted!

    Just like Dubya had.

  • Costello

    Looks like more of Arch’s trademark “wit” on display. [Personal attack deleted by Comments Editor] Can’t wait to see what defenders race to support your misogyny

  • Arch Conservative

    Is it misogyny to say something ugly about Sarah Palin or Michelle Bachmann Costello? Of course not. That’s just good fun huh. [Personal attack deleted by Comments Editor]

  • Costello

    Something that ugly, yes. I’d have fired that idiot drummer from Jimmy Fallon for his behavior. I’ll bet $100, presuming you can even afford that much, you can’t find me saying anything different. Put your money where your big mouth is.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Arch –

    So when I call Michelle Bachmann an idiot for making idiotic statements (which she has done MANY times), exactly how does that justify you calling Debbie Wassermann-Schulz a “f***ing c**t” and wishing her bodily harm?

  • Cannonshop

    “There are lies. There are Damned Lies.
    There are Statistics.”

    -Samuel Clemens

    Warren posted HIS statistics, and Glenn’s posted HIS, and they’re all too eager to call each other liars with ‘em.

    Neither one, of course, is willing to accept that the other might have information that alters the picture truthfully-but there you are, welcome to politics-as-a-sporting event.

    I’m seeing two incomplete pictures that at first, look incompatible-I’d be fascinated to see what would happen if you stopped working from a pretext, took both sets of information, and examined them as a single whole, ’cause they’re not actually contradictory.

    You can HAVE grinding unemployment AND increases in GDP AND have listed increases in “Private sector Job growth”-it’s one of those “Look at what jobs are growing”, and it’s also a bit of accepting the idea that while some areas of the economy are tanking, others are doing just fine, thanks.

    Lemme put it another way: while the rest of the economy’s been in the toilet for over two years now, Boeing’s been hiring steadily, and we’re building more airplanes now, than we were building before the sub-prime crisis hit. The money to build those planes HAS to be coming from somewhere-nobody but Uncle Sam ramps up production at a loss.

    But, just because SOME sectors are doing well, it doesn’t mean the rest of the system isn’t tanking.

    Also it might be worth something to check and see if that 21% job growth has crossed the line on job and labour losses from the initial crash and subsequent aftershocks.

    (I don’t have the answer to that, but at least hey, I admit it…)

    There’s a lot of exclusion in both sides of this argument, so let’s try a new game-let’s assume both Glenn, and Warren, are working from raw fact, and let’s examine the raw facts they’re using, not the spin, to see what the real picture really looks like…

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Cannonshop =

    First Note:

    I wrote recently that an economy based on libertarian economic philosophy – little regulation, little government interference, low taxes – CAN work…

    …if we’re willing to pay the price of having the kind of income inequality gap seen in most third-world nations (but NOT first-world nations). I had to explore the subject after seeing the Lamborghini and Maserati dealerships in Fort Bonifacio Global City here in Manila.

    So please don’t think that I’m so hidebound to Keynesian economics that I can’t the benefits of other kinds of economic systems. Have you seen any other strongly partisan person on BC so willingly challenge their own cherished philosophy as I have (and I’ve done so more than once)?

    I don’t think you have. I’m not afraid to challenge my own beliefs and observations. I wish others would do the same.

    Second Note:

    The “lies, damned lies, and statistics” quote is tromped out every time difficult-to-refute statistics are presented. Be CAREFUL about depending on that quote so much that you miss the statistics that are really important.

    Third Note:

    I invite you, too, to tell us why it is our economy’s not booming since we’ve cut hundreds of thousands of public-sector jobs (during 21 consecutive months of private-sector growth), our banks are regulated FAR less than under at any time in the 50-odd years that Glass-Steagal was in effect, our unions are MUCH weaker than before, and the American taxpayer has a lower overall tax burden under Obama than at any other time in the past 60 years.

    These are ALL cherished conservative goals, are they not?

    The conservatives have always said this was the way to real prosperity, have they not?

    So…WHY is our economy not booming, Cannonshop?


  • Cannonshop

    Glenn, I have two years of junior college and no degree, work a blue-collar manufacturing job, and the best I can offer, is an admission that I don’t have all the answers…

    But I can take a stab at some of them.

    First, we need to look at how the economy changed over the last forty years, from an economy that was focused on producing goods and selling them, to one focused on shuffling paper to create paper-profits. I suspect that’s oen that falls into the “Boom” danger zone discussed in Hayek’s writing, but as I’m not fully conversant with more than the bare bones on it, I can’t be sure.

    But I think, and it’s only a Hypothetical now, that a big chunk of why the economy isn’t booming overall, is that booms are short-term binges, with long-term consequences, and the consequences are either close to, or just past, the “Critical Mass” stage where it’s no longer possible to hide them effeciently.

    Think of it as a drunk, a functional drunk, living for years on “hair of the dog”-eventually the liver just kind of shuts down, esp. when all our hypothetical drunk’s been consuming, are junk-food with only occasional, small, rare, healthy meals.

    Now our hypothetical drunk, he’s a bipolar SOB, but the habit pattern of BEING a drunk continues whether he’s ‘up’ or ‘down’, get it? Doesn’t matter if he’s a conservative today, or a Liberal, he’s doing the same unhealthy things, over and over again. Mortgaging the house for another bottle, say, selling off the tools in the garage to pay for a binge? Yeah, that fits, giving shit to his friends and picking fights too.

    You like to bring up the high marginal tax era-but you seem to ignore the other factors that made it work-when the top rate was 90%, there were tax-breaks for domestic investments, like capitalizing small business (“Venture” capital investments), contributing to useful non-profits (Red Cross, for instance), and paying people to do work for you.

    Most of those went before the rate was cut, the rest, as part of the deal that cut the rates.

    Somewhere, moderation got tossed out. Same for so-called “free Trade”, which also did not exist in that era, but has become a standard with BOTH parties of government since-with that focus, again, on paper profit.

    Mnd that all this is hypothetical, but I think it’s a start- just in the time I’ve been alive, our government’s been paying industries to offshore, and providing a stick behind the carrot to drive them that direction-then using the wall-street gambling profits from papershuffling to show how the “GDP” has “Grown”. I suspect it’s a shell-game, we’re in debt, the economic engine of the country’s about three quarters dismantled and the parts sold off to fund booms scheduled to take place at or near election time.

    Call it what it is: Socialism for the Rich, or “State Corporatism” (a polite term for Fascism).

    Getting out of this is going to be tougher-in the 1980′s, when you were a young man, according to some sources, 10-16% of college/university students were on a financial sector career path. That number jumped to over forty percent. We’ve had a couple generations of that, and it’s been that bubble that’s driven a lot of the problem, you can’t have innovation when your best minds aren’t studying the sciences, engineering, or medicine… and we’ve had a couple generations of that condition, with predictable results.

    In terms of producing things of value that people want to buy, an MBA is pretty much a degee in useless knowledge, and our universities have been shitting them out by the basketful when what we needed were engineers, scientists, doctors…you know, people that know how to DO things.

    I’m of the opinion that papershuffling is non-value-added, that a Service economy is a great way to starve, and that you only gain true wealth, by producing things of value to others-and derivatives or wall-street-betting aren’t productive things to focus on.

    Tracking with me here? It’s going to take a LONG time to fix what’s broken in our economy, Glenn, no magic bullet, no wave of the pen, is going to make it all better no matter HOW many times some blow-dried jackass stands in front of the Flag on a Podium and claims otherwise.

    It’s just a gut feeling mind you, but then, I’m not a demogogue when I don’t want to be, I don’t think the Parties have the answer-and I don’t think the Government can do much to fix this either-it did a lot, imho, to break it, both in Democrat, and Republican hands, and if we let them, they’ll fuck it up even WORSE, because the parties are tied to their platforms and their Ideologies and their Demogogues too much to be rational on their own, and they’re both WAY too eager to try and bribe the populace with the long-emptied treasury.

    Adn don’t mistake me, I know damn well the Republicans have been doing it just as eagerly, and somewhat more disingenuously, than the Democrats have, they’re both from the same pool of idiots that have bankrupted company after company and looted, defrauded, and destroyed investors.

    It’s just how they word the bonuses that changes.

  • Arch Conservative

    “So when I call Michelle Bachmann an idiot for making idiotic statements (which she has done MANY times), exactly how does that justify you calling Debbie Wassermann-Schulz a “f***ing c**t” and wishing her bodily harm?”

    If you have to ask that question you obviously don’t know who Debbie Wasserman Schultz is.

  • Clavos

    Have you seen any other strongly partisan person on BC so willingly challenge their own cherished philosophy as I have (and I’ve done so more than once)?

    No, nor anyone so eager to, and adept at, blowing his own horn…

  • roger nowosielski

    … is this a case of (a) low blow(ing)?

  • troll

    …then WHY isn’t our economy booming?

    good question…here’s what our renegade Keynsian says

  • Baronius

    “First, we need to look at how the economy changed over the last forty years, from an economy that was focused on producing goods and selling them, to one focused on shuffling paper to create paper-profits.”

    Cannon, I like your I-don’t-have-all-the-answers approach. So let me flesh out this statement of yours. It’s true that the US has shifted more toward a service economy, but there are a lot of caveats to that.

    First of all, US agricultural and manufacturing output have increased over the last 40 years. The total number of employees is down, but we’re producing more physical goods than ever before, if you ignore business cycles. This is particularly true in agriculture.

    Secondly, service jobs aren’t just pushing papers or flipping burgers. They include health care and education, two booming industries in which the US leads the world. Arts are in the service sector, and if you can stomach calling Hollywood movie-making “art”, that’s another important industry. And the financial world has suffered lately, but you’ve got to respect its size and scope.

    Lastly, there are the little quirks in measuring manufacturing and services. Forty years ago, a manufacturing company had a mailroom and steno pool. They were all counted as manufacturing jobs. Now, Fed Ex and Kinko’s take care of that. Specialization makes the services look bigger. And if you were publishing something on newsprint, you were manufacturing, but now you can publish 100x the information online, and you’re in the service industry.

  • Dr Dreadful

    So Warren concludes that the MSM is spinning the unemployment figures. What momentous news. Somebody forgot to tell him that they’ve been doing so ever since they first decided that unemployment statistics were important.

    Unsurprisingly, Warren then goes on to put his own spin on them.

  • Igor

    I was intrigued by Warren Beatty’s (not the liberal actor) opening sentence, to whit:

    “Yesterday (December 2, 2011) the MSM gleefully reported that the national unemployment rate for November was “only” 8.6 percent.”

    This is really scandalous! The whole MSM (the leftist bastards!) are lying, trivializing the 8.6 unemployment by characterizing it as “only” 8.6 percent. The filthy liars!

    I wondered because IMO he was reading different media from me because I had NOT read anywhere that unemployment was “only” 8.6 percent, let alone everywhere, as the “MSM” usage would indicate.

    Surely, I thought, since Warren used quote marks around “only” he must be quoting something he read. Since Warren didn’t give a citation for his quote I did what any modern boy would do and plugged it into Google, and got about a page of stuff, not containing the modifier “only” until the BC article itself popped up, except for a comment in some other forum, namely,

    Musclebuilder comment

    But then going to the AP article itself it never said “only”, the “only” seems to have been added by Mr. Hercules and then copied by Mr. Beatty.

    What this tells me is that Warren Beatty (NOT the liberal actor), makes quotes up and is not to be believed.

    Not only that, he doesn’t even make up his own distortions. (He also appears to be a body builder, but I don’t know what that means. Politically, anyhow. Maybe he’s just a big Arnold fan.)

  • Glenn Contrarian


    I want to say ‘good job, Igor’, but I want to see Warren’s reply first.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Arch –

    If you have to ask that question you obviously don’t know who Debbie Wasserman Schultz is.

    I do know who she is, and you’re dodging the question…and everyone can see it.

    I would call you a misogynist, but you obviously understand the logical pickle you put yourself in and you felt compelled to dodge the question since there was no right answer that would pull your fat out of the fire.

    If I were in your position, I’d own up to having screwed up and I’d put it behind me. You’d find, Arch, that if you tried it, it becomes a lot easier to look at yourself in the mirror…because then you’d be holding yourself to the same standards you expect of other people.

  • Igor

    I’m interested if Warren Beatty (not the liberal actor) can produce something that says “only” in the MSM because I believe that the point of this article is that (1) the MSM is minimizing the unemployment rate to bias towards the administration, and (2) it’s ridiculous to minimize the unemployment rate.

    It looks to me like a classic strawman argument: first he falsely attributes a statement and then he demolishes it.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    No, nor anyone so eager to, and adept at, blowing his own horn…

    Yes, I’m sanctimonious. Yes, I’m too proud in my humility. But unlike most people here, I’m not afraid to admit when I’m wrong, and I’m not afraid to publicly check my own beliefs when I see something that calls those beliefs into question.

    I’d love to see others here hold themselves to the same standard. It seems that OAR does, and I’ve seen enough to say with confidence that Doc has the wherewithal to do so as well – but he’s wiser and careful enough with his words that he doesn’t need to go blowing his own horn as I have. I should learn from him….

    But do you? You have real integrity – I’ve pointed it out in your defense several times when others questioned your integrity – but integrity involves sticking to one’s ideals, and insisting on doing what one is supposed to do.


    But it’s a different matter altogether to call your own ideals into question, to check to see if what you’re doing is really what you should be doing.

    I made the radical change from a strong conservative to a progressive liberal because I saw things that made me question my ideals…but I would be a base hypocrite if I no longer challenged my ideals whenever I see anything that calls those ideals into question.

    Clavos, you have integrity and you have my respect – you know that. But I’m also asking you to challenge your ideals, and challenge yourself. When you read this, you’ll probably just blow it off with a snort…but who knows? Maybe sometime when you’re enjoying a quiet beer by yourself, lost in thought in the dark of night…just maybe.

  • One American’s Rant


    I would blush if I knew the emoticon for that.

    I don’t really have anything to add here, except a quote from Wierd At in Amish Paradise – “I’m a million times as humble as thou art.”

  • Christopher Rose

    Glenn – “I’m not afraid to admit when I’m wrong, and I’m not afraid to publicly check my own beliefs when I see something that calls those beliefs into question.”

    You forget, as always, to add the caveat that the above is only true when you are able to accept “something that calls those beliefs into question”. On many points you are just simply unable to accept contradictory data, so your posture is just that, a pose.

    I don’t think you are more intellectually honest than others here, in fact I would say less than many, plus which you are so fucking proud of your empty posture it is just a little bit nauseating…

  • Cannonshop

    #14 Except that if you want a good doctor, Baronius, you better hope for the Pakistani, Chinese, or Indian Immigrant, if you want a good education, you’re pretty much stuck looking offshore there too.

    And the same for engineers.

    and that’s the key problem only now being noticed-they offshored manufacturing first, but it’s also cheaper to hire those support folks-the tech support, engineering guys, etc. overseas.

    It’s that old saw, Baronius:

    “A company that is willing to go to the ends of the earth for their people, will generally find they cost 10% of Americans, and do a better job.”

    ESPECIALLY in the service-sectors you mentioned.

    Flat out, Baronius, we have a PROBLEM in this country-and if it doesn’t get fixed, we’re NEVER getting out of this hole, and all the statistical tap-dancing in the world isn’t going to fix it.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Chris –

    Exactly how many articles have you written that called your own beliefs into question?

    Let me guess: none.

    Whereas just a couple weeks ago I did submit an article calling my own beliefs into question, and admitted that yes, an economy based on libertarian principles CAN work and CAN accomplish things that more socialized economies can.

    Tell me, Chris – how many strong liberals would not only say such things, but even offer up unasked things that no progressive liberal would normally consider in the realm of possibility?

    Not many at all…just as there are precious few conservatives who would sit back and write about how much good Medicare has done for the nation.

    Chris, I get that you despise me (you’ll probably deny it, but your tone and behavior say otherwise)…because you apparently can’t conceive that YES, I just might be that intellectually honest. You’re so busy thinking the worst, and by doing so you’re clouding your own judgment.

  • Christopher Rose

    Glenn, how many articles that called your own beliefs into question and were interesting to read have you written?

    Let me tell you: none.

    I’ve no idea how many strong liberals would say such things, nor do I care.

    And, no, I don’t despise you, although you will presumably refuse to accept such information as it clashes with your belief.

    I get that you think you are intellectually honest, but that isn’t a judgement one can easily make about oneself and my experience is that you think you are but actually aren’t.

    I don’t think the worst of anybody, I just try to take things as best I can understand them for what they are, not what they claim to be.

    I’m fairly confident that here I’m not the one with the clouded judgement…

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Chris –

    The only ones who will believe your #25 are the ones who think as you do. The rest will see your denial and posturing for what it really is.

  • Christopher Rose

    Glenn, you are the one that is denying and posturing, so suck it up, get over it and start trying to walk the walk instead of talking the talk.

  • Baronius

    Cannon –

    “Except that if you want a good doctor, Baronius, you better hope for the Pakistani, Chinese, or Indian Immigrant, if you want a good education, you’re pretty much stuck looking offshore there too. And the same for engineers.

    I disagree. From what I’ve seen, the smartest people around the world come to America for the education and stay because the life is better. There are some real problems with our educational system, but the worst of them are in elementary and secondary. You can still get a good college education in the sciences in the US.

    “‘A company that is willing to go to the ends of the earth for their people, will generally find they cost 10% of Americans, and do a better job.’ ESPECIALLY in the service-sectors you mentioned.”

    That’s not true. Our edge is in the service sector. Grunt manufacturing jobs can be done overseas by people willing to work with minimal benefits. When you get to the more complicated service industries (law, scientific research, insurance, internet publishing), especially the ones which require interaction with consumers, the US does have an advantage. Maybe you’re ahead of the curve and seeing us losing that advantage as well. I haven’t percieved it.

    “Flat out, Baronius, we have a PROBLEM in this country-and if it doesn’t get fixed, we’re NEVER getting out of this hole, and all the statistical tap-dancing in the world isn’t going to fix it.”

    Agreed. But part of fixing the problem is understanding it, and avoiding generalizations that don’t reflect complex reality.

  • Warren Beatty

    Dr.Dreadful and Igor, concerning comments #15, 16, 17, and 19, look at this link from the NY Times (hardly a bastion of conservativsm), Here is a quote from the cited source: “Even so, part of the reason the jobless rate fell so low was that 315,000 unemployed workers simply stopped applying for jobs.” Can either of you (or anyone else) cite a source where the U6 rate is reported?

    Glenn, concerning comment #2, this link will shoot a hole in your “Anyone with half a brain who had been paying attention would know that “when Obama took office” we were losing 700,000 jobs per month…” So, based on your lack of credibility, we can ignore all other comments you make. But please don’t stop making them – thay are worth a good laugh.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Warren –

    Gee – was that all you could find to dispute? If you looked closer at the graph you linked to, you’d find it rather stronlgy supports what I said.

    But as far as my credibility goes, it seems thinks I’m wrong, too – they think I underestimated the monthly job loss before Obama’s stimulus took effect!

    [Joe Biden] said that job losses averaged about 750,000 in the three months before the stimulus bill went into effect. Including job loss statistics for the month of March 2009, Biden is correct. But the bill was signed Feb. 17, 2009, and officially went into effect that day. And using that measure – November and December of 2008, and January 2009 – Biden is off by about 26,000 jobs. Biden also said that job losses averaged about 35,000 for November and December 2009, and January of 2010, which is also correct. Because Biden is not quite right on the first part of his statement, we’ll knock him down a point. As a result, we find his claim to be Mostly True.

    Warren, you should know that I can usually back up any statistical or historical claims I make. You might want to double-check next time you try to dispute my claims.

  • Dr Dreadful

    Warren, it looks as if you entirely overlooked the bit where I wasn’t disputing that the MSM spins the unemployment numbers (although what they’re more likely to be doing is dumbing them down because they only have 30 minutes to broadcast the news and don’t have time to spend all of it on dry statistical analysis). The reason that you, too, are spinning is that you haven’t supplied a compelling reason why the U1 through U5 figures are any less valid than U6 and aren’t simply different measures of the unemployment picture.

    Does the Winston-Salem Journal count as mainstream media? It appeared, along with your article (congratulations), on the first page of Google’s news search results for the topic.

  • Igor


    “…you better hope for the Pakistani, Chinese, or Indian Immigrant, if you want a good education, you’re pretty much stuck looking offshore there too.

    And the same for engineers.”

    Racism, Cannon?

  • Igor

    Warren Beatty (not the liberal actor): You haven’t addressed my charge that you are distorting the news and creating a strawman in order to take a cheap shot at the media and President Obama. And your article is subtitled:

    “MSM in the tank for Obama.”

    I claim that you are just repeating rightist cant from the Fox echo chamber, specifically that the MSM is leftist and pro-Obama. And I’ve seen nothing from you to support your contention. And it looks like you fabricated something to facilitate your perfidy.

    In other words, I accuse you of being a liar, sir! SLAP (a metaphorical backhand slap with my glove across your lying mouth!)

    I await your response.

  • Costello

    Rather baffling that a comment editor censors my comment when it was certainly no worse than Christopher’s comments towards both Roger and Glen on the site. The troublesome twosome may have been a handful to deal with, but they accurately called out the rampant hypocrisy around here. Too bad they closed up shop recently

  • Warren Beatty

    Igor, Re: comment #33, Typical liberal response – you couldn’t find any source to cite, so you resort to attack mode. At least Dr. Dreadful found a citation.
    Also, please explain how I established a “straw man.”
    Further, please cite sources if you are going to call someone a liar. Otherwise you appear as a fool.

  • Warren Beatty

    Also, Igor, does “in the tank” and “bias” mean the same thing? I meant for them to. Anyway, this source documents MSM bias. Yes, I wrote it, but that fact in no way lessens its message. And this source explains how Reid and Pelosi plan to put illegal aliens ahead of unemployed Americans.

  • Dr Dreadful

    Also, please explain how I established a “straw man.”

    Warren: see Igor’s comments 16 and 19.

  • Dr Dreadful

    Anyway, this source documents MSM bias.

    Warren, a Google search of only one unemployment rate documents nothing except how many hits you get by Googling it.

    What you did is a bit like Googling “Pope Benedict XVI” and then complaining based on the search results that the MSM is biased against Protestants.

    To demonstrate bias in this case, you’d have to Google the U6 rate as well and show that there were far fewer MSM hits for that number.

    And I believe we’ve advised you before that citing your own writings as support for your arguments does not, generally speaking, do wonders for your credibility…

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Warren –

    So let me get this straight – since Obama’s in office, we should be using the “U6 Unemployment Rate” instead of the “U3 Unemployment Rate”, and the MSM’s refusal to do so obviates the MSM’s “liberal bias”, right?

    The problem with that, Warren, is precisely as Doc Dreadful pointed out – the MSM (including your precious Fox News) has to dumb things down since much of the public wouldn’t care about U1-U6 types of unemployment. Moreover, it would be wrong and misleading to use a different metric under Obama than under Your Boy Dubya.

    So please stop with the strawmen…and you still haven’t explained why it is that the economy isn’t BOOMING now since we’ve got much of what conservatives have always wanted (economically speaking) as I delineated in my first comment on this thread. Care to address the question about why our economy isn’t BOOMing?

    Didn’t think so.

  • Arch Conservative

    “I would call you a misogynist, but you obviously understand the logical pickle you put yourself in and you felt compelled to dodge the question since there was no right answer that would pull your fat out of the fire.”

    No pickle. Just more liberals baselessly throwing around socially stigmatizing epithets toward those they disagree with. Just your average day in America.

    A misogynist would have said all women are cunts. I singled out one out of about 3.3 billion, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and called her a cunt, because she is. I’d be willing to bet there are millions of American women who feel that I used the most fitting word in the English language to describe Debbie.

  • Christopher Rose

    Costello, the comment of yours you refer to was edited because you made a personal attack on Arch Conservative, as was his comment to you.

    If I have gone too far in my disagreements with Roger and Glenn, although I don’t think I have, then my assistant will edit my comments, which I have specifically confirmed to him that he should do.

    There is nobody on this site who is above having their comments edited, including my bosses, all of whom have had their comments edited from time to time.

    Personally I fail to see anything hypocritical in this but feel free to make your case if you indeed have one…

    Christopher Rose
    Blogcritics Comments Editor

  • Christopher Rose

    Archie, I strongly disagree with your argument. It isn’t the case that calling every woman a cunt would be sexist but calling one woman in particular isn’t, both are.

    Personally, I’ve never understood why men consider this word as an insult, the pejorative use of which seems deeply misogynistic to me. I’m a big fan of the vajayjay myself…

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Arch –

    If you’ll read closer, I said “I would call you a misogynist, BUT” –

    The word “tut” meaning that I did not call you a misogynist. Hopefully you’ll read a little deeper and figure out what I really said.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    To all –

    The esteemed Comments Editor Christopher Rose states:

    Personally I fail to see anything hypocritical in [insulting others but editing the insults that others make]

    …and THEN he says in the very next comment:

    Personally, I’ve never understood why men consider [the label 'misogynist'] as an insult

    I submit that Mr. Rose is RIGHT – he simply doesn’t understand, which is why he doesn’t see the hypocrisy in editing the insults of others (and supporting the ban of Ruvy for the same, IIRC) while engaging in using uncalled-for (and wildly inaccurate) insults himself…and instead of holding himself to the same standard he expects of others, Chris depends on his assistant to edit his words FOR him. Any good supervisor knows instinctively that NO supervisor depends on a subordinate or even an equal to edit his or her words FOR him, and this is even more egregious since this Comments Editor is depending on his assistant to edit his (the Comment Editor’s)j words FOR him after the words have been publicly posted!

    And perhaps that’s one reason why the traffic on this website has dropped significantly since certain people were banned.

  • troll

    “…and THEN he says in the very next comment:

    Personally, I’ve never understood why men consider [the label 'misogynist'] as an insult”

    that’s not what he said…geeze – what’s happened to reading comprehension around here?

  • Dr Dreadful

    Glenn, the reason why Chris depends on me to edit his comments is that to do it himself would be unethical.

    I edit his and he edits mine, particularly if one of us is deeply involved in a discussion. That’s one of the reasons why we have two comments editors.

    Chris may have engaged in insults, but I don’t see anything yet that justifies an edit.

  • Jordan Richardson

    Chris, you’ve crossed the line many, many times and have personally insulted many of the posters here. I have too. Most of us have.

    The fact that you deny it whilst asking us to buy that your assistant would edit your comments had they “crossed the line” is like a fart in the wind.

    Then there’s the matter that we’ve had egregious repeat offenders, like Dr. Cuntbag in comment one on this thread, keep on keepin’ on with the same bullshit year after year while others are banned with comparative ease.

    Doc, I think the point is that there doesn’t appear to be any continuity or visible accountability in having one’s fellow do the editing. I think that’s a reasonable concern.

  • Dr Dreadful

    That’s as may be, Jordan, in which case anyone is welcome to contact Blogcritics management with such concerns.

    Our comments editing setup may not be ideal, but it’s a heck of a lot more impartial and fair than many blogs, on which you can be banned for nothing more egregious than disagreeing with the webmaster.

    Archie has, I’ll grant you, been given a lot of licence and has been warned many times about his conduct: warnings which he appears to take on board but then forgets about in the heat of his always pungent opinions. A close eye is always kept on him here.

    The “others” you refer to were not banned “with comparative ease” but after much discussion, and the decision was made not by Chris and myself but by upper management, after consultation during which Chris and I both expressed reservations about the bannings.

    Only spammers, obvious trolls and those in clear and persistent violation of the comments policy are “easily” banned.

  • Jordan Richardson

    Compared to the things Arch has said over the years, I still maintain that the subjects we’re talking about were banned “with ease.” The emphasis is on the contrast, not the “ease.” I’m not suggest that such decisions are made lightly or easily.

    You may have discussed their situations at length, but it does appear that others have been given a lot more rope. If we compare the amount of warnings given to a poster like Arch (I don’t want him banned, for the record) with the amount of warnings given to someone like, say, the verbose Sarge, how does it add up? Who’s had a longer leash? From my perspective, the answer is pretty clear, but my perspective has been known to be wrong.

    How does Arch’s behaviour not represent “clear and persistent violation of the comments policy?”

    Also, is this Blogcritics a blog or an online magazine/blog network? I recognize that the set-up is unique, but we have mechanisms for doling out review materials and for editing articles. It seems that, by comparison, the comment policing is a little fly-by-night. Comparing it to the North Korea of other sites/blogs isn’t particularly compelling to me.

    Anyway, just my two cents worth (possibly less with the exchange rate) from what I’ve observed over the last while. I certainly don’t want to detract from how you do your job or run down the site, but I think there are some concerns with consistency worth looking at.

  • Cannonshop

    #32 Nope, has to do with working with engineers and going to see doctors (Something I’ve had more experience than I’d like on that second part since the accident.)

    The guys with the weird accents from abroad tended get right down to what’s wrong, and their shit worked. Same on the factory floor-American engineers (born here, educated here, raised here) generally end up deferring to the foreign-born (and you know who they are-it’s on the badge they’re wearing) more often than not, and when they don’t, we end up going and sending most of the ‘fixes’ back for a reconvene to prevent further damage to the airplane.

    Why is this? because the American engineers that aren’t LAZY, have barely more competence than some of our GREEEN mechanics.

    It’s real simple, Igor-American Education in the PRODUCTIVE arts stinks. I can’t testify to how a college/university educated finance guy might have an edge-but given the last five years, I’d have to speculate that they are about as incompetent and/or lazy.