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1 in 4 Americans 25-54 Not Working

By zzyzzx follow zzyzzx   2014 Sep 25, 11:48pm 18,466 views   73 comments   watch   nsfw   quote   share    


http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/1-4-americans-25-54-not-working_806178.html

Here's a chart showing those in that age group currently employed (95.6 million) and those who aren't (28.9 million):

"There are 124.5 million Americans in their prime working years (ages 25–54). Nearly one-quarter of this group—28.9 million people, or 23.2 percent of the total—is not currently employed. They either became so discouraged that they left the labor force entirely, or they are in the labor force but unemployed. This group of non-employed individuals is more than 3.5 million larger than before the recession began in 2007," writes the Republican side of the Senate Budget Committee.

"Those attempting to minimize the startling figures about America’s vanishing workforce—workplace participation overall is near a four-decade low—will say an aging population is to blame. But in fact, while the workforce overall has shrunk nearly 10 million since 2009, the cohort of workers in the labor force ages 55 to 64 has actually increased over that same period, with many delaying retirement due to poor economic conditions.

"In fact, over two-thirds of all labor force dropouts since that time have been under the age of 55. These statistics illustrate that the problems in the American economy are deep, profound, and pervasive, afflicting the sector of the labor force that should be among the most productive."

#politics

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34   Strategist   ignore (2)   2014 Sep 26, 11:47am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

sbh says

I would happily trade the risk in our current situation for that of "full employment". Why wouldn't you, if you're concerned with violence and unrest?

Full employment has a nice tone to it, but is just not possible. There are always people quitting jobs, getting fired, looking for the right job while unemployed.
The Soviet Empire boasted of full employment, but it was just going to work and doing nothing. And their productivity was just horrendous. Workers would not show up, and instead go to the movies to watch lousy boring movies. They would have the police rounding them up, making them go to work. LOL. Some incentive.

sbh says

But what of the current component labor? That population will suffer. Another virtue accrues to owners as their laborers become ever devalued commodities.

Labor is not devalued in this country. Just look at an average assembly line worker.....their standard of living has never been this good. In the old days they would slog 18 hours just to pay for basic necessities. Now it's 40 hours with lots of money for movies, vacations and Budweiser.

35   New Renter   ignore (11)   2014 Sep 26, 12:29pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Strategist says

but it was just going to work and doing nothing

Which describes many American jobs as well.

Strategist says

They would have the police rounding them up, making them go to work.

I had a drunk of a roommate in college with that problem. Bastard still owes me rent!

Strategist says

Labor is not devalued in this country.

Which is why you are encouraging your children to go to trade/vocational school right?

36   darlag   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 27, 1:05pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

No secret if you keep up with John Williams data...

?hl=ad&t=1409923259

37   APOCALYPSEFUCKisShostikovitch   ignore (43)   2014 Sep 27, 1:55pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

ASSHOLES!

Get out there and flip those fucking shacks, exactly as the founding fathers intended.

38   darlag   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 12:33am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Dan8267's two rebuttals of Strategist's comments above are the best comments on this thread. His understanding of the underlying causes of the socio-economic and political ills affecting the U.S. today is uncommonly astute.

39   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 2:03am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

darlag says

Dan8267's two rebuttals of Strategist's comments above are the best comments on this thread.

Really? It would help if his subject and predicate were in the same zip code, don't you think?

I think yous are skipping over a big influence on this subject which is the type of law and it implementation.

40   Strategist   ignore (2)   2014 Sep 28, 3:21am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

darlag says

Dan8267's two rebuttals of Strategist's comments above are the best comments on this thread. His understanding of the underlying causes of the socio-economic and political ills affecting the U.S. today is uncommonly astute.

I thought they were pathetic. Full of myths, bizarre opinions, misleading and lacked critical thinking.
I gave him a D- even though he deserved an F-

41   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 3:26am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Strategist says

lacked critical thinking.

Funny that is what he prides himself on...

42   Strategist   ignore (2)   2014 Sep 28, 3:32am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

sbh says

Your opinion of labor is clear: bad beer, a two hour distraction, and a tawdry trip to the slots is all it deserves for its 40 hours, and any system in which it accrues more is just communism.

Let me try again:
Look at the standard of living of an assembly line worker in the US during the Soviet era, and compare it to the assembly line worker of ANY communist country at that time. Our standard of living far exceeded theirs. If our economic system devalues labor, why is the standard of living of our laborers far better than that of the communists?
The answer is simple....Our economic system produces so much wealth, that it enables the poor to take a slice of that wealth. The communist may have paid everyone equally, but they just could not produce the wealth needed to even come close to our standard of living.
Bottom line....Capitalism is a success, communism is a failure.

43   darlag   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 3:34am     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

indigenous says

I think yous are skipping over a big influence on this subject which is the type of law and it implementation.

I'm primarily referring to these quotes...

Dan8267 says

Making things crimes that shouldn't be is the single largest cause of crime.

Dan8267 says

The proper way to handle education is to completely virtualize it, reducing it's cost to damn near $0.00 per student. I'm talking about making education costless, not just "free" as in someone else pays for it.

Dan8267 says

The real moochers are assholes committing financial crimes like Goldman Sachs. Those moochers cost Americans literally trillions of dollars. Welfare queens are utterly insignificant in contrast.

Dan8267 says

I don't take drugs. However, unlike you, I have the intellectual capacity to understand that which drugs end up on the wrong side of the law is determined primarily by financial and political agendas, not by any justifiable criteria. Furthermore, prosecution of drugs is highly selective indicating that the drug war is not about battling any harm to society.

Dan8267 says

Why would any rational person blame the unemployed in an economic system that insists on creating large unemployment to be used as "lubricant for the economic engine"?

I agree with all those assertions.

As for the type of law, no legal system works for those that can not afford a legal defense. These are primarily the groups of people we are talking about. We fein legal assistance for the poor but we all know how well that works in the inner cities.

Thoreau said (paraphrase) :

"Laws never made this country a whit more just, and by means of their respect for it, even the well-disposed are daily made the agents of injustice."

44   Strategist   ignore (2)   2014 Sep 28, 3:40am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

indigenous says

Strategist says

lacked critical thinking.

Funny that is what he prides himself on...

darlag says

Dan8267 says

I don't take drugs. However, unlike you, I have the intellectual capacity to understand that which drugs end up on the wrong side of the law

he he he he

45   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 3:46am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

darlag says

Laws never made this country a whit more just, and by means of their respect for it

I don't agree, one of the cornerstones of a functioning economy is private property. The laws that are centered around private property make things much more just. Inflation steals private property, increased taxes to pay for TARP and QE are theft (wealth transfer), subsidies are stealing from the taxpayer to pay subsidies. The problem is that our legal system does not focus on private property.

46   New Renter   ignore (11)   2014 Sep 28, 3:55am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Strategist says

Our standard of living far exceeded theirs. If our economic system devalues labor, why is the standard of living of our laborers far better than that of the communists?

The answer is simple....

Labor unions, plain and simple. Somewhat restricted immigration policy as well.

Plus the communist countries had the sh!t kicked out of them during the war. Russia and the eastern bloc countries took the brunt of the war damage. After the war America via the Marshall Plan helped rebuild West Germany, Russia took a pound of flesh out of east Germany.

Want an example of what REAL capitalism is like? Try the Belgian Congo.

47   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 3:56am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

New Renter says

Labor unions, plain and simple.

Plain and simple yup but also WRONG, with even a perfunctory understanding of economics you would know better than this.

48   New Renter   ignore (11)   2014 Sep 28, 4:03am     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

indigenous says

New Renter says

Labor unions, plain and simple.

Plain and simple yup but also WRONG, with even a perfunctory understanding of economics you would know better than this.

I know I am correct.

49   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 4:08am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

New Renter says

I know I am correct.

Must be true then...

Unions have been on the decline for something like 100 years, if what you say is true why don't the wages correlate to that statistic?

Also they have increased since the public sector has adopted collective bargaining. Why have their wages increased to double what their private sector counterparts make at the fed level?

50   New Renter   ignore (11)   2014 Sep 28, 5:25am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

indigenous says

Must be true then...

It is.

indigenous says

Unions have been on the decline for something like 100 years, if what you say is true why don't the wages correlate to that statistic?

100 years? That's when unions in America were just getting started.

Lets see your statistics then, something NOT funded by the CATO institute

51   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 9:12am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

New Renter says

Lets see your statistics then, something NOT funded by the CATO institute

I had to peruse extensively and found this graph in 1 minute from Wikipedia.

52   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 9:38am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

You do see that salaries and union membership do not correlate?

BTW you know what does correlate? It is production, that's right increased or decreased production correlates to salary.

You can see that a worker who can use a tractor makes more money than a worker who can use a shovel?

53   New Renter   ignore (11)   2014 Sep 28, 10:48am     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

indigenous says

New Renter says

Lets see your statistics then, something NOT funded by the CATO institute

I had to peruse extensively and found this graph in 1 minute from Wikipedia.

All your graph shows in that union membership took off during the great depression and started declining in the 1950-70s which was *only* 45 years ago, not the 100 as you stated.

Its also exactly the same time the standard of life for the working and middle classes improved dramatically (1930s-1950s), peaked (1950s-early 1960s) and started hitting the toilet (1970+) in this country.

Thanks for proving my point.

54   New Renter   ignore (11)   2014 Sep 28, 11:04am     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

indigenous says

You do see that salaries and union membership do not correlate?

Not from your data.

Do you see unions were directly responsible for weekends, abolition of child labor, 40 hr workweeks (remember those?), paid overtime, safety regulations, pensions/retirement plans other than a swift kick in the ass?

indigenous says

BTW you know what does correlate? It is production, that's right increased or decreased production correlates to salary.

Which is ironic since real middle class wages in this country have remained stagnant while productivity has skyrocketed.

indigenous says

You can see that a worker who can use a tractor makes more money than a worker who can use a shovel?

Doesn't matter, both tractors and shovels are automated so both the tractor driver and ditch digger are comrades in the breadline.

55   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 11:23am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

New Renter says

Thanks for proving my point.

Bullshit, the graph show that the highest compensation would have been around 1945 declining slowly to around 1970 then auguring from there.

The wages do not correlate to that graph. Here is a graph showing annual income. Can you see that they do not correlate?

56   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 11:28am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

New Renter says

Which is ironic since real middle class wages in this country have remained stagnant while productivity has skyrocketed.

More recently yes, but that is a different subject.

New Renter says

Doesn't matter, both tractors and shovels are automated so both the tractor driver and ditch digger are comrades in the breadline.

That is irrelevant, do you see that the tractor driver makes more than the shovel operator?

57   New Renter   ignore (11)   2014 Sep 28, 12:57pm     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

indigenous says

New Renter says

Thanks for proving my point.

Bullshit, the graph show that the highest compensation would have been around 1945 declining slowly to around 1970 then auguring from there.

The wages do not correlate to that graph. Here is a graph showing annual income. Can you see that they do not correlate?

Yes its amazing what two incomes can do over one.

However when you look at income of one income earning households vs two the stagnation is clear:

http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/10/how-americas-marriage-crisis-makes-income-inequality-so-much-worse/280056/

58   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 2:09pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

New Renter says

Yes its amazing what two incomes can do over one.

However when you look at income of one income earning households vs two the stagnation is clear

If your assertion were true you should be able to turn one of the graphs upside down and they would parallel. IOW one should correlate to the other.

59   bob2356   ignore (4)   2014 Sep 28, 2:34pm     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

indigenous says

Bullshit, the graph show that the highest compensation would have been around 1945 declining slowly to around 1970 then auguring from there

Bullshit to your bullshit. Union's don't instantly increase wages and benefits. There is a big time lag. Percentage of union workers went from almost nothing to peak 1930 to 1940 then was pretty stable till 1970 then started dropping rapidly. Unions got wages increased all through the 50's and 60's when they were at the peak of membership. There is no reason at all wages should have decreased 1945 to 1970 when membership didn't. Throw in salaried workers the peak wasn't until 1955.

You also conveniently forget there was a wage freeze during WWII. How could wages have peaked when they weren't allowed to rise?

60   bob2356   ignore (4)   2014 Sep 28, 2:41pm     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

indigenous says

If your assertion were true you should be able to turn one of the graphs upside down and they would parallel. IOW one should correlate to the othe

That's just total nonsense even for you.

61   Strategist   ignore (2)   2014 Sep 28, 2:42pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says

Bullshit to your bullshit. Union's don't instantly increase wages and benefits. There is a big time lag. Percentage of union workers went from almost nothing to peak 1930 to 1940 then was pretty stable till 1970 then started dropping rapidly.

Unions served a purpose when we had exploitation. Today, we have strong laws (too strong) preventing any sort of exploitation, so we don't need them. Infact they exploit the businesses by milking them like cash cows. Greedy union bosses deserve jail.

62   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 2:44pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

My main thinking on this is that unions create imbalances that will cause the company to suffer and the customer to pay more. The only way they can exist is though government intervention. GM was effectively BK because of being saddled with having to pay union benefits.

63   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 2:45pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says

That's just total nonsense even for you.

Yup that is what you always say, why the fuck not?

BTW putting the graph that way supports the duck's theory.

64   New Renter   ignore (11)   2014 Sep 28, 2:46pm     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

Strategist says

. Today, we have strong laws (too strong) preventing any sort of exploitation, so we don't need them.

And how do you define worker exploitation?

65   New Renter   ignore (11)   2014 Sep 28, 3:33pm     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

indigenous says

bob2356 says

That's just total nonsense even for you.

Yup that is what you always say, why the fuck not?

BTW putting the graph that way supports the duck's theory.

Only if the blood rushing to your head is making you woozy.

indigenous says

GM was effectively BK because of being saddled with having to pay union benefits.

That was a big part of their problems true, as were unmotivated union workers and pigheaded management.

A few years ago "This American Life" did a story on the Fremont NUMMI plant (now TESLA) GM set up with Toyota and how the worst GM plant in America became the best:

http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/403/transcript

What's interesting is how the exact same *bad* union workers in the worst GM plant responded to being asked to improve quality. The plant managers had been rewarded for cranking out cars, problems be damned, those can be fixed later. Reminded me of the stories I heard about Soviet factories. Workers were penalized for trying to stop the line to fix problems. Once a Toyota quality philosophy was adopted by both workers AND management quality went way, way up.

There's more to the story than just legacy costs.

66   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 3:53pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

New Renter says

Only if the blood rushing to your head is making you woozy.

Suit yourself you just have to look...

The NUMMI plant also did not have work rules in effect no union hierarchy. That was a remarkable story that shows how much of a liability the unions are.

I still contend the overriding factor is production. If the union does not have to answer to the market place then the situation gets FUBAR as with the public employees.

The reason for the current conundrum is that money is going to speculation instead of investment as this is what creates jobs.

67   bob2356   ignore (4)   2014 Sep 28, 4:09pm     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

Strategist says

Unions served a purpose when we had exploitation. Today, we have strong laws (too strong) preventing any sort of exploitation, so we don't need them. Infact they exploit the businesses by milking them like cash cows. Greedy union bosses deserve jail.

The 5% of workers that still belong to unions are milking businesses like cash cows? Do tell.

So if laws are preventing exploitation then why has productivity and profits gone through the roof while wages are stagnent?

Unions are only a problem for companies with incompetent management.

68   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 4:12pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says

So if laws are preventing exploitation then why has productivity and profits gone through the roof while wages are stagnent?

Because of speculation from the Fed QE money, has nothing to do with actual business operations. Same thing happened in 29
bob2356 says

Unions are only a problem for companies with incompetent management.

Bullshit.

69   bob2356   ignore (4)   2014 Sep 28, 5:00pm     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

indigenous says

bob2356 says

Unions are only a problem for companies with incompetent management.

Bullshit.

So riddle me this batman. Why are some companies successful year after year and some are in a constant state of crisis yet they both have exactly the same union.

70   indigenous   ignore (0)   2014 Sep 28, 5:14pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says

So riddle me this batman. Why are some companies successful year after year and some are in a constant state of crisis yet they both have exactly the same union.

Who?

71   Dan8267   ignore (3)   2014 Sep 29, 12:56am     ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

Strategist says

darlag says

Dan8267's two rebuttals of Strategist's comments above are the best comments on this thread. His understanding of the underlying causes of the socio-economic and political ills affecting the U.S. today is uncommonly astute.

I thought they were pathetic. Full of myths, bizarre opinions, misleading and lacked critical thinking.

I gave him a D- even though he deserved an F-

When Hitler says your stance on the Jewish people is misleading and lacks critical thinking, take it as a complement. When Jim Cramer says your financial portfolio is based on myths and bizarre opinions, double your investments. When David Lereah says that you know nothing about housing, you're on the right track.

Strategist is the David Lereah of politics.

Speaking of Lereah, his book can now be bought for $3.69. It's still a ripoff at that price.

Ah, sometimes Amazon reviews are right on the money

441 of 450 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Better title - "Join the Greater Fools of America Club" April 19, 2005
By NewYorkBuck
Format:Hardcover
For me, this was more comic relief than any scholarly analysis. The author has a vested interest in the bubble not bursting, and he's selling his soul with this book to prove it.

He spins webs of demographics and interest rates, but he never ever addresses the core issues that determine housing values. What is lost here is that housing in itself creates no value, its value is completely predicated upon peoples ability to pay for it. Ergo, housing prices for the last 100 years have tracked income remarkably closely, that is, except for the last five years. Historically, the ratio of housing price to annual income has been 2.1, with very little variation. In many parts of the country, this ratio is now approaching 10.5! Can you say "major correction?" Further, the amount of leverage used to buy homes during this boom has been increased to absolutely unprecidented levels. Even during the last boom of the late 80s/early 90s, the standard was still 30 yr fixed and 20% down. Not anymore. Last year, less than 15% of borrowers put down 20% or more! Further, the 30 yr fixed has been replaced by the IO, or interest only loan. See now, we have the same borrower capable of bidding 30-40% more for a propery without any better credit or ability to repay. Neat trick, but sadly, Lereah at no point addresses any of these fundamentals.

Our stock/housing pattern appears remarkably similar to the one Japan had 20 years ago. First the stock market busted. Right after, the real estate market rallied, and it busted too. The current Japanese real estate market is in a 14 year slide to date, and houses are going for roughly their 1980 value.

Keep talking Dave - we'll need the comic relief soon!

Notice the date, 2005? And the press said no one saw the bubble burst coming.

72   Strategist   ignore (2)   2014 Sep 29, 12:57am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says

indigenous says

bob2356 says

Unions are only a problem for companies with incompetent management.

Bullshit.

So riddle me this batman. Why are some companies successful year after year and some are in a constant state of crisis yet they both have exactly the same union.

Name a few.
American auto companies are a disaster thanks to unions. Airlines have always been shaky. Grocery stores are steadily losing market share as they cannot compete with non union competition. Some like Twinkies are already out of business. Yes, there are some companies that have unions and are extremely successful due to monopolistic powers. Boeing comes to mind. Defense industry would be another example.

73   Strategist   ignore (2)   2014 Sep 29, 1:08am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Dan8267 says

When Hitler says your stance on the Jewish people is misleading and lacks critical thinking, take it as a complement. When Jim Cramer says your financial portfolio is based on myths and bizarre opinions, double your investments. When David Lereah says that you know nothing about housing, you're on the right track.

Good morning Dan.
The Palestinians and the Muslim world are telling me the same thing today. I would tell them to kiss my ass. Jim Cramer is an entertainer. I would tell him I prefer to make my own investment decisions, and most likely, I have done much better then him. I don't care what David Lereah says.
PS...I do my own critical thinking. :) :)

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