Not much is more important than the jobs report.
The spin on this is government’s use of the term “essentially unchanged.” That is idiotic language for a nation of sheep. Something is either unchanged, or it is not. Plain and simple. Maybe better, maybe worse, a bit or a lot. But “essentially unchanged” is m”essentially BS” to anyone capable of precision thought.
So here that is, hot off the press (release)
Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 271,000 in October, and the unemployment rate was essentially unchanged at 5.0 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Job gains occurred in professional and business services, health care, retail trade, food services and drinking places, and construction.
Household Survey Data Both the unemployment rate (5.0 percent) and the number of unemployed persons (7.9 million) were essentially unchanged in October. Over the past 12 months, the unemployment rate and the number of unemployed persons were down by 0.7 percentage point and 1.1 million, respectively. (See table A-1.) Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (4.7 percent), adult women (4.5 percent), teenagers (15.9 percent), whites (4.4 percent), blacks (9.2 percent), Asians (3.5 percent), and Hispanics (6.3 percent) showed little or no change in October. (See tables A-1, A-2, and A-3.)
The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was essentially unchanged at 2.1 million in October and has shown little change since June. These individuals accounted for 26.8 percent of the unemployed in October. (See table A-12.) The civilian labor force participation rate was unchanged at 62.4 percent in October, following a decline of 0.2 percentage point in September. The employment- population ratio, at 59.3 percent, changed little in October and has shown little movement over the past year. (See table A-1.)
The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) edged down by 269,000 to 5.8 million in October. These individuals were working part time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job. Over the past 12 months, the number of persons employed part time for economic reasons has declined by 1.2 million.
OK, those are press release words. Let me break it down for you, line by line:
The civilian, non-institutional population was up 216,000 last month.
The Labor force was up 313,000.
The labor participation rate went nowhere.
The number of people working went up 320,000.
The unemployment rate actually dropped from 5.1 down to 5.0 percent.
The number of people not in the labor force is still 94.5 million, but that’s 97,000 fewer than last month. (It is claimed.)
Only 27,000 of those new jobs were actually goods producing. The other 241,000 were in services. Shoe shine, mister? Windows? Car wash? Hold your spot in line for you?
The average work week was unchanged and average hourly earning went up 9-cents to $25.20. If you are not making that, tell your boss you need a raise. We don’t aspire to below average, do we?
Here is the crazy part: These are actually good numbers. The markets should be throwing a party but futures are about flat. Gold is under $1,100. And the un and underemployed rate dropped from 10 to 9.,8.
Yet the market doesn’t like this at all.
The Baltic Dry Index is down into the 630 region, is cited by some as a reason. Like airplanes, though, there is a huge fuel cost component to running ships. I noticed in town here, the going price of gasoline is done to $1.99 for regular around here.
Triple A says the price of gas nationally is running $2.22 a gallon. A year ago, it was running $2.95…and in keeping with the decline in fuel prices, of course, the cost of ocean shipping will come down. Think about it – gas prices are down almost one third….a quarter anyway.
Not to say that we’re out of the woods. But pessimism is as much a disease as the Pollyanna optimists get.
The world is not ending this morning. Still of all the new jobs, fully 165,000 were “estimated into existence” by the CES Birth-Death Model over here.
the biggest gains were in business and professional services (+75,000) but I could have sworn either the ADP or Challenger reports showed declines there. Maybe I just need a LOT more coffee…
Next, the MSM Turns on Carson
I have told you how many times that the MSM is engaged in what would be similar to shark-tank behaviors?
Latest to experience this is Dr. Ben Carson who finds himself in the WaPo this morning as somehow being questioned about ability lead because of some very honest answers to what it’s like to come up underprivileged and black in America. Yeah, thoughts of violence do spring from that.
It’s like this is a shocker to the MSM. GMAFB.
Anyone in America – who is poor and is constantly bombarded with the MSM messaging about “winning” and all those unattainable (for many) lifestyle treats – who doesn’t at least “run the numbers” on committing a major crime (as in felony) has had too much of the Kool-Aid.
The fact is that people do get angry in this world – and it doesn’t have to be medicated away. It has to be learned from and grown-through which is exactly what Carson has done.
Now, given a choice between an American president who is a total wimp, or someone who has a point beyond which they cannot be pressed…well, seems to me that’s how previous presidents have mostly acted as well.
Anger is fuel. Fuel to learn self, to do better, work harder, and so on. It’s something to rise above.
So Carson has had anger issues. Well f**k, who hasn’t? I mean honestly… If you don’t get angry, you ain’t much of a human. What separates us is what we do with the anger – and Carson has done good.
This N.E. liberal core doesn’t seem to want anyone but she-who-should-be-jailed and articles attacking honesty and candor follow; Headlines with the keyword “questioned” come out. Even planting them as memes out there, should be placed on the shelf where it belongs.
Next to the Charmin.,
But now that it’s in the WaPo, it must be true, so out comes Trump to claim Carson’s hardcore youth was a fabrication… go figure.
Politics is dirty but that should be no particular surprise.
Time for Strategic Thinking
A note from my buddy warhammer because now is a good time to be assessing the strategic position of the country:
I don’t believe it’s news worthy that many in the Pentagon are frustrated with the Executive Office’s handling of U.S. foreign policy:
It seems to be the case with just about every commander-in-chief that holds the reins of U.S. military power.
We need to remember that prior to WWII, American held firm to George Washington’s farewell address warning to “beware of foreign entanglements.” It is widely believed Washington was most concerned that the nation would ally itself to others not holding the same fundamental interests, be they economic, diplomatic or democratic in nature. Except for the 4 year blip known as ‘The Great War,” or “The War to End All Wars” (aka WWI), America was isolationist, an ‘island nation” insulated geographically from the unending quagmire of European bloodshed.
To quote Master Yoda, “now, matters are worse!” Seemingly every corner of the globe is fraught with peril. America, now a global economy (strike one, George Washington) with strong diplomatic ties spread across the seven seas (strike two, GW). The last tether this nation has for controlling its own destiny is its constitution, unique among the world even after 230 or so years.
There is much room for chaos and calamity in the Middle East. It is too late to cut ties with Israel and Saudi Arabia, nor should we, with the first being the only true, freely elected democracy in the region and the second a reasonable and at times moderate force among the Islamic community of nations. They must be supported at all costs, as they are what is known in military vernacular as ‘the pointy end of the spear.’ They will bear the brunt of the fight while we support them.
The Baltics? To confront Putin would require a military build-up of Cold War proportions, far too expensive an undertaking in terms of blood and treasure in today’s economic climate.
China? The dragon is spreading her wings, and as with E. Europe, the burden would simply be too hard to bear for American taxpayers. Our keystone ally in the region, Japan, must pony up to the bar and buy a few rounds (of ammunition), while we serve as their designated driver.
Functional, rational diplomacy is of the utmost importance at this point in history. Failure to reasonably diffuse any regional campfire could literally result in an unimaginable and here-to-fore unseen military conflagration.
My two cents? While I didn’t vote for Obama and I really don’t admire many of his qualities, I would not want to be in his shoes.
Yes, more can be done to help stem the tide of chaos in various regions of the world. Military intervention is not always the right prescription for what ails an ally or a geographic region. Sometimes patience pays off.
But there is a very fine line that cannot be crossed when withholding the hammer of power, as demonstrated by what happened when British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain famously appeased Adolph Hitler’s move into the Czech/Slovak Sudetenland in 1938, empowering the Nazi warmongers and paving the way to WWII. Threats must be deterred. Greater threats require unending opposition and tremendous vigilance.
The old Strategic Air Command’s motto was “peace through strength.” Democracies must retain the ability to deter and, when deterrence fails, repel tyranny and aggression. This, I believe, is where the current U.S. administration fails.
A many-beers conversation could come of this. What was really going on at Benghazi and how is it there are so many American fingerprints around the edges of Syria? All above our pay grade, of course, but Putin is no more of a demon than the 1-percenters – and these are the people who make money on wars. And while we’re at it, we can always talk about overpriced pumping stations in Afghanistan, too.
Perhaps the world will end next week. But with jobs not looking worse and with a whole year to run till elections sort out, maybe we can still steal defeat from the jaws of victory.
That’d be the Nu-Merican way, here lately.
Come on by Monday and we’ll see how that works out…