Gallup CEO: Employment Numbers Are Big Lie

Jim Clifton, the CEO of Gallup, has written that the employment numbers are highly misleading.

Frankly, I thought many of us already knew that the job numbers were virtually meaningless. But as a relatively mainstream figure in a mainstream organization, to have the CEO of Gallup make these declarations about the employment numbers is something close to a bombshell.

jobless african American

In his original piece he wrote,

There’s no other way to say this. The official unemployment rate, which cruelly overlooks the suffering of the long-term and often permanently unemployed as well as the depressingly underemployed, amounts to a Big Lie.

And it’s a lie that has consequences, because the great American dream is to have a good job, and in recent years, America has failed to deliver that dream more than it has at any time in recent memory. A good job is an individual’s primary identity, their very self-worth, their dignity – it establishes the relationship they have with their friends, community and country. When we fail to deliver a good job that fits a citizen’s talents, training and experience, we are failing the great American dream.

Gallup defines a good job as 30+ hours per week for an organization that provides a regular paycheck. Right now, the U.S. is delivering at a staggeringly low rate of 44%, which is the number of full-time jobs as a percent of the adult population, 18 years and older. We need that to be 50% and a bare minimum of 10 million new, good jobs to replenish America’s middle class.

I hear all the time that “unemployment is greatly reduced, but the people aren’t feeling it.” When the media, talking heads, the White House and Wall Street start reporting the truth – the percent of Americans in good jobs; jobs that are full time and real – then we will quit wondering why Americans aren’t “feeling” something that doesn’t remotely reflect the reality in their lives. And we will also quit wondering what hollowed out the middle class.

[See also, “Regime Unemployment Number Is Meaningless.”]

I think this article stands out in pointing out that the jobs “successes” that are being touted are really a cruel joke. People have gone from having full-time jobs to not having jobs to having pathetic part-time jobs. That horrible exchange is bad enough, but then a bunch of Obama maniacs are yelling, “What a success! Isn’t it great to be in a recovery now?”

No. Not this “recovery.”