RUSH: It’s just absurd. I don’t care where you look today. You got the Drive-Bys having orgasms over 5.5 unemployment, best it’s been since May of 2008. CNN — they could barely keep their clothes on reporting this. Nobody knows the truth of anything.
RUSH: The unemployment numbers, ladies and gentlemen, it’s just getting comical now. The unemployment rate reported today, 5.5%, the best it’s been since 2008. And, of course, it’s all because of Obama, his economic policies. Yeah, they took longer to impact people but they finally are now starting to take root, and it’s come to pass that the Obama economic policies were the right thing to do, as evidenced by the unemployment number, 5.5%. Here is CNN. They could barely keep their clothes on over there today reporting this. Up first is Christine Romans, who is their economics reporter.
ROMANS: Sometimes a good headline is just a good headline, Carol, and that’s what this report shows us. When you look within these pages and pages of tables, you see an American economy that is creating jobs again across the spectrum. The trend here has been good. Jobs added consistently month after month. The unemployment rate, really important milestone here for the unemployment rate, 5.5%. It’s been trending down for a year. The lowest since May 2008.
RUSH: I’m sorry. I thought that was 2007 at first, but they’re saying May of 2008, which still works. That was before Obama was even elected, and then the question — Carol Costello was doing the interviewing here of the economics reporter, Christine Romans — she said, “Well, what about the underemployment numbers, huh? What about that, Christine?”
ROMANS: I’m so glad you asked. You hear a lot, especially people who criticize this president, who say the real unemployment rate is double digits. The underemployment rate, that’s people who are working part time but want to be working full-time, people who are sort of sidelined in the labor market, that’s falling, too. It’s 11%. It is higher than the stated unemployment rate of 5.5%, but all of those rates are starting to fall.
RUSH: Anybody who thinks that we really have an unemployment figure of 5.5%, that that accurately reflects the employment circumstance in this country, is a fool. Because if you do, you would have to agree that there is simultaneous, robust economic activity causing robust economic growth, and that just isn’t there. It is occurring in a couple of industries, fracking and high-tech, but it isn’t there.
Here the real numbers once again. And remember, the unemployment rate that is reported, this 5.5%, the government called it the U-3 unemployment rate, and it does not count the number of people who have given up trying to find a job after being out of work four years. It doesn’t count those people. If you’re not actively seeking a job and you don’t have one, you’re not counted as unemployed. The labor force participation rate is hovering near a 37-year low, and it has been for the last 11 months. It is 62.8%, 62.8% labor force participation rate.
That’s the percentage of eligible workers actually working, 62.8%, and they want us to believe the unemployment rate is 5.5%.
We’ve lost almost a total now, since Obama became president, of four million jobs. They’ve just been erased. So the universe of jobs against which we’re measuring unemployment and full employment is much smaller. So it’s easy to lower the unemployment rate to 5.5% when the universe comes down as well. The bottom line is this: 92.8 million millions are not working, and they want us to believe that we have an unemployment rate of 5.5%.
Now, people are gonna believe it, it’s been reported, it’s widespread, it’s all over, and everybody is going to accept, the low-information crowd is gonna accept unemployment’s great, the economy’s great. I’m just preparing you for that, but I want you to know the truth. Also a record number of women are not in the labor force. By the way, these are not my numbers. They come from the Bureau of Labor Statistics: 56,023,000 women age 16 and older were not in the labor force. Prostitutes not counted, of course. Well, they’re not. It’s actually a little bit more, but we don’t know how many more.
Not only was that number, 56,023,000 a record high, but it’s also the first time the number has exceeded 56 million, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Now, to be counted as not in the labor force one must not have a job or have looked for a job in the past four weeks. In January 2015 there were 55,756,000 women not in the labor force, which means 267,000 women dropped out of the labor force since January 15th. But that unemployment number, man, really coming down, 5.5%. Right on, dude.
RUSH: One other point that I always make that I fail to make in reporting how many Americans are not working, 92.8 million Americans not working. However, they are all eating. It used to not be that way. It wasn’t that long ago that if you didn’t have a job, you didn’t eat, regularly anyway. Of course that’s not the case now. We have nearly 50 million Americans on food stamps alone, and with other welfare benefits thrown in, and now the disability act encompassing so many other types of crazy behavior, that more and more Americans don’t have to work to eat.
More and more Americans don’t have to work to have a phone. More and more Americans don’t have to work to be able to have a television set and pay for cable. In fact, more and more people don’t even have to be employed to afford a K-Cup machine. And while they use it, they destroy the environment, according to the inventor.
RUSH: Larry in Armor, South Dakota, it’s great to have you on the EIB Network, and hello.
CALLER: Thanks for taking my call.
RUSH: You bet, sir.
CALLER: I’m kind of nervous, so I’ll get to this as quick as I can. About a month ago or so, they announced — and I heard it one time on the radio — that the 99-week unemployment benefit had run out. Now they’re saying this month that the employment is so much better. I suppose they figure that if they’re not getting unemployment benefits, they must have a job, right?
RUSH: No, you know what? That’s an interesting point. I had forgotten that, and I’m gonna have to look this up. I think you’re right. There were some people whose 99 weeks expired in January, and I’m not sure if they were extended. If they weren’t, if the unemployment benefits were not extended for those people, they would then fall into that category of unemployed but not looking for work and therefore they wouldn’t be counted as unemployed. That’s your point, right?
RUSH: Yeah. That may well be. Allow my intrepid staff here to do some quick research into that 99 weeks, ’cause I have a vague memory of that. Those things are expiring all the time for people, and that’s why we’re constantly hearing about extending them, and I’m not sure we extended it recently. I have to check on this.
RUSH: Forbes magazine, March 2nd, this year issue, headline: “Unemployment Is Dropping Thanks to a Republican Policy That Obama Opposed — In January, in his annual State of the Union address, President Obama bragged that ‘our economy is growing and creating jobs at the fastest pace since 1999.’ It’s great news… But according to a new paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research, the recent improvement in the labor market may be due to a policy change that Obama adamantly opposed: ending extended unemployment benefits.”
Folks, not only is it the ending of extended unemployment benefits, the reason why the unemployment number is coming down. The Washington Examiner January 26th: “Study: 60% of 2014 Job Growth Caused by Expiration of Unemployment Benefits.” Let me read to you from that article. Sixty percent of job creation in 2014 was caused by the expiration of unemployment benefits, according to a new working paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research. … The new new [sic] working paper found that the expiration of benefits was responsible for the creation of over 1.8 million jobs.
“Nearly 1 million of those jobs were created by workers who would have otherwise stayed out of the labor force if unemployment benefits had been extended.” This didn’t get much play, but I vaguely remembered it when the caller mentioned it. The Republicans did oppose one of these never-ending extensions of unemployment benefits. And true to form, human nature took over, and the people who had been on benefits for 99 weeks and did not get them extended, went out and found work, 1.8 million of them.
Some of them created their own jobs in an entrepreneurial way, but they did. So Obama clearly opposed ending the extension of benefits. Obama wants people on government benefits. He wants people subservient and loyal to the Democrat Party on benefits, and they didn’t extend them. He opted it, and these people didn’t sit around and wait for some other benefit program to kick in. They went out and found work. Now, they were able to. We have to admit.
They were able, 1.8 million people were able to go out and find work. Some of them created their own jobs. (interruption) Some of them ended up doing work that illegals refused to do. Now, that’s another thing that’s happening. Some work even the illegals refused to do it. So the long-term unemployed Americans decided they would do it. It’s amazing how these cycles end up overlapping. Bottom line: Ending unemployment benefits led to more people finding jobs.
It did have an effect on the unemployment rate. There were a couple other factors as well, but caller had a good memory.