Tag Archives: jobs

Unemployment Rate Stuck at 9.1%

I wish I had a solution.

I wish somebody, anybody had a solution.

The President says he does in the form of a “Jobs Bill.”

Hmmm…. I wonder what is in the “Jobs Bill?”

Well, if you want to read it you can find it HERE.

About all I could do is skim through the thing. It’s loaded with more legalize than a Yale/Harvard football game.

From what I can tell…

  1. It’s expensive
  2. It’s a gamble
  3. It could end Federal Unemployment Benefits as we know it.

Here’s the problem with the jobs bill. It’s on the verge of failing to pass vote in the Democratic lead senate. If the President can’t get his own party to back his bill the guy is in big trouble.

Surely the President knew what the bill faced. On the surface the bill is more of a political football rather than a real plan of substance that would put people back to work and get UE levels down to pre-rescession levels.

Let’s assume for a minute the Senate passes the bill and sends it on to the House. There’s pretty much no way the Republican lead house will pass the bill in it’s current form. The President knew this going in. What that would allow him to do, as he is already doing, is stand in front of a microphone and say, “I sent a job bill to congress that would send people back to work. (Which we don’t really know if it will or not. There’s not a good track record of these kinds of things working.) But, the republicans blocked it. They must now want American’s going back to work. They must like 9.1% unemployment rates.”

It’s misdirection − slight of hand. “These aren’t the droids you are looking for.”

Surely anyone of any kind of intelligence will see this for what it is. The only job President Obama is really concerned with right now is his own.

I Lost my Job – Somebody in Mumbai Found It!

Over the last couple of years you could not open a newspaper, turn on a television, or talk to a neighbor without hearing about the disappearing jobs situation across America.

I haven’t worked in over two years. That’s not entirely true. I have worked plenty. I haven’t had a job with a nine-to-five clock, health benefits and someone to call boss. I’ve had to fill my time with what freelance projects I can find and the personal writing projects I take on.

The Obama administration is saying unemployment in America is improving. The administration is wrong. The numbers are smoke and mirrors. It’s sleight of hand and the only thing disappearing are jobs. That’s not entirely true either. The jobs are still there – lot’s of them. The only problem is, there is not here. There is not where they used to be. “There” is Mumbai and Bangalore, where American high-tech heavyweights like Microsoft, Dell, Intel, and others are finding a new workforce to fill high tech jobs that once resided from sea-to-shining-sea.

According to a Dan Rather article in the Huffington Post a couple of months back, since 2009 over 250,000 IT jobs in our country disappeared. Over the same period, IT outsourcing positions in India added nearly 850,000 workers, with the average pay for an IT engineer a little under $9,000 a year. (I’m not entirely sure I can blame the Dells and Microsofts of the world considering the average wage for the same IT worker in Silicon Valley is $80,000 a year – plus bennies.)

Coincidence? I think not.


Jeffrey Job-Killer

I read this article in the New York Post yesterday about GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt, being tagged by President Obama to lead the President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness. Hmm… interesting pick.

I spent exactly ten years drawing a GE paycheck, year-after-year listening to HR buzz words like staff reductions, cut backs, reorganization, and the ever popular, doing more with less. The less part of that statement meant less people.

Let’s examine how the GE CEO has (or has not) created jobs at GE.

In 2009, GE eliminated 18,000 jobs for US workers. Since Immelt took the helm in 2002, U.S. headcount is down to 134,000. During his tenure, GE workers based in the US, as a percentage of total employees, has fallen from 52% to 44%.  We will find out what the job-killing toll is for 2010 when the annual report hits the streets in February.  If 2009 is any indication, I’m guessing U.S. headcount could be down to 25,000, or less. Any employee growth that GE has seen since Immelt came to power was overseas. Maybe it’s just my imagination at work. I remember when they brought good things to life.

Since 1980, when GE had 405,000 employees worldwide, they have been relentlessly shedding jobs to a global workforce of 304,000, nearly 40,000 of those jobs were lost under Immelt’s management. GE’s own website clearly shows a steady decline in US jobs since 2005.

It smells like business as usual between big corporation and the White House. GE secretly had itself classified as a bank so it could take advantage of nearly $80 Billion in TARP funds. Free government money? Resistance is futile!

“I am a nut on China!” ~Jeff Immelt CEO of GE, Dec 6, 2002

Go HERE to see the full context of Mr. Immelts love affair of China. You really don’t want to miss this. Be sure to watch the video. I noticed when he needed money to see GE through some tough economic times he didn’t go to China, China, China, China, China, with a hand out.  He came to the United States taxpayers. (You’ll have to watch the video for that to make sense.)

No Merry Christmas for the 99ers

The 99ers are those Americans unemployed long enough to exhaust their unemployment benefit (UE) of 99 weeks.  According to the US Department of Labor, at least 10% of the currently unemployed (over one million Americans) have been out of work over two years. They no longer receive any government UE benefit.  The recent 13 month benefit extension tied to the tax bill does not increase the 99 week eligibility, it only extends the period of time where federal subsidies are used to extend the benefit out to 99 weeks.

The ranks of the 99ers is increasing at an alarming rate. One week in March of 2009, 643,000 people filed for UE benefits, a surge that lasted for several weeks during that time period. (According to Labor Department data) That was 89 weeks ago. As these recipients begin to lose assistance the ripple across the already stagnant economy will be severe. People barely hanging on will be left without anything to hang on to. This loss affects basic survival needs – food, shelter, transportation. And this is money that will no longer be feeding back into the economy.

The problem is complex, but the solution is evident – Jobs!

Our country hasn’t seen this kind of hole in the job market since the Labor Department began tracking employment numbers in the early seventies. As of November, slightly more than four million people had been unemployed more than a year and in the coming months, unless companies begin opening their doors to new employees, a social disaster is imminent among the chronically unemployed. The jobs situation must improve to end the plight of the 99ers.

The future is a scary thing to look at when you don’t know what it holds. My heart goes out to anyone in that situation.

You take my life when you do take the means whereby I live. ~William Shakespeare