Saturday, May 8, 2010

Gains? What gains?

Greetings good citizen,

Maybe if we all whistled Bobby Mc Farrin’s ‘Don’t worry, be Happy’ from sun up ‘til sundown the F’n MSM pinheads would shut the hell up!

It is a bizarre situation where this isn’t the kind of reporting we would pay for BUT it is the kind of reporting they’re paid to provide, the kind of reporting that mimics advertising, because you get that for free too.

Join me in a brief moment of silence as we mourn the loss of intelligent reporting by people whose primary language is English. (The ‘Search for Excellence’ didn’t stop on the shop floor, it swept across the full spectrum of ‘paycheck peasants’, always seeking ‘cheaper’.)

Which is to ask how much chutzpah does it take to crow about the economy adding 300,000 jobs after it lost 8 million jobs over the last two years? Worse good citizen, a lot of ‘good paying’ jobs were, er, ‘squeezed out’ of the economy (read my lips here) NEVER TO RETURN!

In fact, it is extremely ‘unlikely’ the current economy will add even 4 million jobs before we hit another, er, downturn. (Some speculate even these early gains will be wiped out before Summer is over! How’s that for ‘fragile’?)

Worse good citizen is the ‘temporary’ nature of current hiring. Most of the positions being added are not ‘career’ positions but transitory, ‘at the moment’ type of employment, little different from a ‘temp’ job.

So, almost two and a half years in, it isn’t particularly surprising that the whole situation absolutely reeks of ‘desperation’…they desperately want you to believe!

Worse (yes good citizen, there IS something worse) is that many of you ‘want to believe!’

We’ll continue this after we parse tonight’s offering

Economy Gains Impetus as U.S. Adds 290,000 Jobs
Published: May 7, 2010

Despite growing unease in the financial markets, the American economy is gathering steam, adding an unexpectedly large number of jobs last month. [Which, bizarrely, wasn’t captured in the ‘weekly’ numbers or it wouldn’t have come as such a ‘surprise!’…]

The Labor Department’s monthly snapshot of the job market, released on Friday, showed that employers added 290,000 jobs in April — the largest gain in four years — and that they did so across a broad swath of industries. The United States has now added jobs for four consecutive months. [Is it beginning to look like a healthy percentage of these alleged gains can be directly attributed to notoriously flawed ‘Birth/Death model’?]

The unemployment rate, however, crept up to 9.9 percent, from 9.7 percent in March, mostly because of a significant increase in the number of people who had previously given up [having] decided to look for work again.

Major stock gauges in the United States rose briefly on the unexpectedly strong job growth report before gyrating in a trading day marked by continuing fears about spreading European debt woes and concern about structural weaknesses in the stock markets that may have contributed to a terrifying sell-off on Thursday. [The markets are so screwed up that they lost value despite yesterday’s ‘positive’ jobs report…which tells us a number of disturbing things…]

European leaders were meeting in Brussels over the weekend on ways to reassure investors that the heavily indebted countries within the euro zone would not face debt defaults and to restore confidence in European banks. [Would that it were, good citizen! When people don’t earn enough to fund their ‘obligations’ the only thing they can do is default.]

The stock market has raced higher this year, before retrenching the last few days, and some American [financial] companies have posted record profits. But stock investors increasingly fret that the economic recovery in the United States could be threatened by a European-led debt crisis. [There’s the ‘could be’ thing again. Does it strike you that these people spend an inordinate amount of time/energy ‘worrying’ (aloud) about the inevitable?]

Economists suggest that as long as the debt crisis is primarily contained to Greece, or even a few other countries, the effect on the United States will be minor. [Of course, there are ‘economists’ who believe Greece can somehow make themselves ‘more competitive’ without starving themselves to death (but idiot economists never concern themselves with little ‘details’ like that.)]

A full-blown financial crisis across Europe, however, could affect banks in the United States, and in turn, how much credit they offer American companies or consumers. [Um, this points directly to the ‘crux’ of the problem, the ‘fuck you, pay me’ crowd. (Whose grip on the global economy SHOULD BE, but isn’t, ‘illegal’.)]

Another potential risk for the American economy is foreign investors fleeing to the dollar and abandoning the euro. That would strengthen the dollar, making it difficult for American companies to sell their goods abroad. [Don’t you wish these asshole would stop pretending that the US exports something other than food/raw materials? If ‘made in the USA’ were a ‘real’ factor, you’d encounter a domestically produced product every once in a while! Don’t these morons think we know that there is a huge difference between actually being made in the USA and made BY a ‘US Based corporation? (At a plant physically located and staffed by people ineligible to live in the actual US.)]

“I think at this point the U.S. economy has a very good chance of being able to continue its recovery despite the uncertainty in Europe,” said Bernard Baumohl, chief global economist at the Economic Outlook Group. “But the threat is real, and we have to be vigilant and very nimble.” [Geez, Bernie, define ‘economic recovery’, will ya? Because if you’re not talking about the 20 year long trend of ‘perpetual shrinkage’ that what passes for our economy has experienced, you’re a lying sack of shit! Is that what you mean Bernie? That our economy will continue to shrink? (and these economist assholes call this ‘a recovery’.)]

President Obama called April’s job report “particularly heartening.” He noted that “this week’s job numbers come as a relief to Americans who’ve found a job, but it offers, obviously, little comfort to those who are still out of work.” [Hmmn…does this mean he’s already accepted the fact that re-election is ‘impossible’, they can’t even ‘steal’ him a second term, so toxic has he become!]

All manner of businesses were hiring, including those in manufacturing, leisure and hospitality and health care. One of the strongest gains occurred in manufacturing, which added 44,000 jobs, the largest increase since 1998. [Are you familiar with the term FIFO? (first in, first out, because that’s how manufacturing is, they’re the first ones to hire and the first ones to cut…and 44,000 isn’t a piss-hole in the snow!]

The Census Bureau contributed 66,000 temporary jobs last month. [That will be terminated next month.]

Yet, in a sign that many people will struggle to find a job even as the economy improves, the number of people who have been out of work for more than six months hit 6.7 million, nearly 46 percent of the unemployed. “The economic recovery and expansion is entrenched, sustained and sustainable,” Allen L. Sinai, chief global economist at Decision Economics, said. But he warned that the economy faced numerous challenges, including the need for the United States to deal with its own domestic debt and a possible downturn in exports to Europe. [Since Mr. Sinai is a ‘Chief Economist’ we already know he doesn’t know his butt from a hole in the ground, we also know better than to take what he says at face value (because chances are excellent his opinions are, at best, poorly formed.)]

“It’s like having symptoms of a heart attack,” Mr. Sinai said, “either you ignore them or take preventive action to make sure there will be no heart attack.” [Uh, say what? So, “entrenched, sustained and sustainable” means we’re having a fucking heart attack and we’d better watch out…yeah, that was ‘real helpful’.]

The increase in April was accompanied by a revised gain for March of 230,000 jobs, up from 162,000. While the levels of the last two months exceeded the 150,000 jobs a month that many economists say is necessary to accommodate new entrants to the job market, they were still not nearly as high as the average after previous recessions. [Look at that! There are NO ‘help wanted’ ads in the fucking newspapers and yet the BLS somehow ‘undercounted’ March’s jobs figures by nearly a hundred thousand! I’ll ask you to be mindful that these are the same people who allow the banks to mark their bad loans to ‘fantasy’ so they can ‘pretend’ to be solvent, so just how ‘accurate’ do you think these employment figures are?]

The number of unemployed people actually rose slightly from March, to 15.3 million. And the so-called underemployment rate — which includes people whose hours have been cut as well as those working part time because they cannot find full-time jobs — rose to 17.1 percent, from 16.9 percent in March.

At the current rate, the economy will take years to absorb the more than eight million people who lost their jobs during the recent downturn. [No irony should be lost on the fact that this problem is directly related to capitalism and the continued exploitation of workers as ‘income streams’.]

Thomas J. Duesterberg, president and chief executive of the Manufacturers Alliance/MAPI, a trade association, said that increases in exports as well as consumer demand for automobiles and computers were driving part of the rebound. But he pointed out that 16 percent of all manufacturing jobs were lost during what has come to be known as the Great Recession and that a tiny portion of those had been added back so far.

Mr. Duesterberg said the alliance was forecasting that slightly more than half of all manufacturing jobs lost during the recession would return — but not until 2014. [And this is supposed to be ‘good news’?]

On the home front, he said consumers were only cautiously returning to the market, battered by declines in housing and personal savings.

Leisure and hospitality added 45,000 jobs, and the health care industry, which has shown growth throughout the recession, added 20,100. [Dead end, low paying hotel, restaurant and hospital jobs…and only a tiny fraction of the total lost! Can you say Banana Republic if we DON’T alter the trajectory we are currently on?]

Economists were of two minds about whether to be worried about the rise in the unemployment rate. Some suggested that it was a temporary move associated with transitions in the labor market, while others saw extended pain for the unemployed.

The rise in the unemployment rate was associated with a growing willingness by people who sat on the sidelines during the recession to once again look for work as the economy picked up. The government figures showed that 195,000 people returned to the work force in April. [Um, what point is there to seek work when nobody is hiring? Worse, if you’re, er, ‘demographic’ is less, er, ‘appealing’ to prospective employers…you’re better served by ‘waiting it out’.]

“The unemployment number went up for the right reasons,” said Joshua Shapiro, chief United States economist for MFR. “It was a sign of strength, because you just had more people reentering the labor force, which is typically what happens in turning points.” [Understand good citizen, there is nothing in this report to distinguish it from previous installments of frivolous ‘happy talk’. The, er, backers of this drivel are using the calendar to provide credibility to their claims.]

[Do you believe it!]As expected, state and local governments lost 6,000 jobs in April. Their budget cuts probably foreshadow further job losses in the public sector. [This from the same people who insist they are ‘surprised’ by everything else!]

Labor market experts also focused on wages and average hours worked in a week. Although the average workweek inched up to 34.1 hours, suggesting that workers are taking home slightly bigger paychecks, actual hourly wages were up only 1 cent, to $22.47, in April. Average hourly earnings were up 1.6 percent over the last 12 months. [Um, left to your imagination good citizen is precisely where they get that $ 22.47 from? This, according to our handy dandy calculator, represents a wage of slightly more than $47,000 a year. Are you aware that this kind of money places you in the lower reaches of the top 20% in the income distribution chart? So only one in five, of the employed 50% of the working aged population, saw that fucking penny. Is this air starting to get ‘rarified’ enough for you?]

Economists suggested that such anemic wage increases, if they were to slow any further, could contribute to a deflationary environment. And labor market specialists said they were concerned about what would happen as the effects of the government stimulus package wound down and unemployment benefits began to run out. [They’ve already extended unemployment benefits nearly a year longer than historic norms…so what are they trying to say?]

Such fears confront Antoinette F. Vitacco, a 53-year-old Queens woman who worked as the supervisor at a New York call center in 2007 when her company downsized.

In early 2008, she found herself unemployed and, for the first time in her life, receiving unemployment benefits. “I went from making $65,000 a year to making $430 a week,” said Ms. Vitacco.

Over the last two years, she said, she has sent out 200 to 300 résumés, tailoring each one to fit the potential job. [But, as I commented earlier, if your, er, ‘demographic’ is ‘less appealing’ to employers, you probably won’t be hired.]

She has been unable to find any work, she said, and her unemployment benefits ran out this month. She has no health insurance and she fears she is aging out of the work force. [This, of course, is a totally different issue…we can give ‘lip service’ to the idea of ‘age discrimination’ but actually proving it is something else entirely, especially now that there are so many of us!

“I have worked my whole life,” Ms. Vitacco said. “Now I have no more safety net, and it terrifies me.”

Grim little ‘reality check’ slipped into the end there, isn’t it? Makes you sort of sympathize with the Chinese worker pushing thirty…all washed up but, fortunately, still young enough to work on the farm.

There is no ‘farm’ for 50 plus US workers…you’ve reached an age where you actually ‘need’ your health benefits and you’re physiologically slowing down on several fronts. Roll the clock back three centuries and you’d be dead.

When they established age 65 as the retirement age back in late 1860’s, it was demographically the point where 100 percent of the current generation had already passed away. So, the fucking capitalists, cheating sleaze-bags that they are, only agreed to implement Social Security because the theory was NOBODY WOULD LIVE LONG ENOUGH TO COLLECT!

You were supposed to pay in your whole life and get nothing! Perhaps that is what the $255 ‘death benefit’ was supposed to be about, a ‘justification’ they could point to in case people objected to being taxed for something they weren’t going to live long enough to collect.

And yes, S.S. was originally formulated/instituted in Germany back in 1865. It was adopted here as part of the New Deal in the 1930’s. Ironically, they adopted the German ‘actuarial’ data without updating it for advances in medicine made over the intervening 60 odd years.

Still, for all of the conservatives screaming and shouting, a significant portion of every generation dies without ever collecting a cent of their S.S. contributions.

Worse (and yes, good citizen, it does get ‘worse’) the current ‘reversal’ of S.S. cashflow (the recent admission that this year S.S. will pay out more than it takes in) is directly connected to the shrinking of our workforce and not increased longevity!

So we’re sort of screwed no matter how we look at it…as long as we do nothing to rescue ourselves from those who would cheat us out of our due!

There is a better way of doing things and a far more equitable way of sharing and caring for this, our only home.

But to get there we need to smash the grip of those who will exhaust the resources of this planet for their own benefit, those who place their own interests ahead of those of our species!

Some ‘want to believe’…because the alternative is so horrible, but, just because the truth is difficult to swallow it doesn’t make it go away.

You need to be strong good citizen, for the sake of the children!

Thanks for letting me inside your head,


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