Friday, June 19, 2009

Masking the Problem

The number of people signing up for unemployment last week alone is back up over 600,000. The unemployment rate is up in 48 states, Michigan is now over 14% and Oregon, Rhode Island and South Carolina are over 12%. Many state are past 10% or 11%. The total of continuing claims is down slightly but with the overall rate going up, this means people are using up their eligibility. These people have taken a big and for many an irreversible step toward homelessness.

After 40 years of Presidents screwing with the way the unemployment numbers are calculated these numbers only count about half of those that would be counted if you used the method used in the thirties. If you used that method we would see we are in a Depression. Other tracking indicators of things like trade, manufacturing output and banking activity also track the downward slide at the same rate as 29 and 30.

Two things are masking the situation: social programs that keep the number of people starving in tent camps to a minimum and so far have prevented rioting; the other thing is the massive amounts of goods and oil that we get because of credit from China and just printing money. When this catches up to us, things will change for the worse very quickly and in ways that will shock Americans. I’m serious about those canned goods.


Anonymous said...

Prairie2, while not really a comment,I was extremely alarmed by the SCO conference. (Bric upside the head) I have searched in vain for further details of this meeting.I highly recommend reading Dr.Micheal Hudson's writings and lectures on this topic. Any further info?

prairie2 said...

they didn't let the US observe the talks because they didn't want anybody to know what they are doing. But I wouldn't put any emphasis on that. Things are getting out of hand because of what the corporations and banks have done. The BRIC countries are going to act in their own best interest. If that doesn't include us, we have no one to blame but those Republican Rat Bastards that put us in this position.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Prairie.I had hoped that maybe something had leaked that you might know about.While I certainly agree that the Rep Rat Bastards are to blame,I think it should finally be clear to all that the only democrats and progessives, with a handfull of powerless exceptions, are those of us out in the trenches. Our so called "democratic" majority have done nothing but pour fuel on a raging fire. No, I do not blame the SCO and Bric countries for protecting themselves and my only surprise is that they have waited this long.Like most,I had no illusion that Obama was anything
more than a moderate but had hopes that he would at least attempt to stop the madness. My belief is that they all have to go, now.

SanMigMike said...

I think that we all have to take some of the responsibility for our current mess. Much to my regret we have had to vote for the "Lesser of the Evils" or the "Democrat in Name Only" far too often. We have allowed ourselves to be divided by sideshow differences so that both parties can be bought and used by big business.

As an experiment it is obvious that Capitalism has failed, just like Communism it is a great idea until people get to making it better for themselves.

Like the old line about everything looks like a nail to a man with a hammer, so long as the people pulling the levers have a stake in keeping the existing banking and health systems going we will have no real change. We will pay the price for trying to keep a crippled and failed system struggling along a few more years until we get to try to live through an even bigger crash.