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The Press and the Government in bed together

Am I the only one noticing that almost all economic data coming out of our Government is not only false and misleading but is often times wrong? More importantly , most of the Financial press out there seems to roll over and not even question numbers that are either flat out wrong or are more propaganda then reality. Take today’s jobless claims for instance. The Associate Press reported: “New unemployment claims fall to lowest in 2 months”. Wow! it use to be year over year or at least 6 months worth of data was analyzed, but now we are taking it 2 months at a time? Why stop there? Why not crow that claims fell sharply since 3:00 pm yesterday? This growing manipulation of data has become so alarming that with each headline that appears to be good news you get baffled as you read the actual content.

The Labor Department said Thursday that new claims for jobless benefits fell by 3,000 to a seasonally adjusted 450,000, the third decline in four weeks.”

That is a sharp fall in claims? 3000 less claims out of 470,000 is a big decline only if you are running for office but to the rest of us that is a rather insignificant amount. The title or the AP report made it seem like jobs were steaming along like a locomotive didn’t it? The way the headline appeared you would be foolish not to sink 100k in the stock market and get in now before this bull market takes off. The writer goes on to say:

The report follows other data earlier this week that shows the economy is still growing, but at a slow pace. Still, initial claims are still above levels that would signal widespread hiring. In a healthy economy, claims usually fall below 400,000.

The economy is still growing even though there is 450k or more new jobless claims each week? Seriously how can the government say this with a strait face and how can the writer report it like its gospel? The Government is desperately trying to convince the American public that we are out of recession when all the numbers (like these latest jobless claims) indicate otherwise. The second statement has become a central propaganda them of this administration and the lusting press who covers it. A healthy economy does not have jobless claims of below 400,000 per month. A healthy economy has workers who can leave one job and go find another without need unemployment, yet this “below 400,000 mantra” has been drilled into these reporters head in an effort to convince everyone that as long as new jobless claims gets below 400k then the administration did its job. Let’s assume new jobless claims fall to 375,000 per month starting next month and continues at that pace for 12 months. That would equal 4.5 million people receiving unemployment benefits over the course of the year. Seems like a lot of people but we are told to believe this is a healthy economy, except the writer goes on to say :

“The number of people receiving benefits fell by 84,000 to just below 4.5 million. But that doesn’t include several million people who are receiving unemployment aid under extended programs approved by Congress during the recession. The extended benefit rolls fell by more than a half-million to just under 5 million in the week ending Aug. 28, the latest data available”

Now I’m confused because I thought we would have a healthy economy is we got to 375k new jobless claims yet the writer is stating there are currently 4.5 million receiving these benefits right now and this is the worst economy of the last 50 plus years? Doesn’t that seem like fuzzy math that only an Enron Accountant could figure out? As if this wasn’t enough propaganda being spilled, the balance of the article pretty much shot down the enthusiastic headline with the following line:

The unemployment claims report covers the week that included Labor Day, and claims frequently drop in holiday-shortened weeks.”

Oh…So out of a five day window to file unemployment claims, the offices weren’t open one of the days. How come they didn’t report this as a number like “The unemployment office was closed 20% of the time last week”? This reporter and government are making a big splash with the headline knowing that most will not read the real story but at the end of the day, the number of jobless claims was down a measly 3000 claims and most likely it was due to the fact that the unemployment offices were closed on labor day that week. Just thinking out loud here but out of 464,000 people who did file during that 4 day week you have to believe that had the offices been open on Labor Day then at least 3000 maybe 10,000 people would have filed. That alone tells me that this is negative news not a sign of recovery. Claims probably would have been higher then the previous week but they were closed. In other words this report and this government is total bull shit and it’s only intended to have readers see the headline and think that the economy is improving and everything is hunky dory. I apologize for the language but if you can give me another word besides ‘Bull Shit” to describe this Headline then I will issue a correction.

This begs the question as to why they are continually coming out with half assed numbers designed to fool the American public. Obviously reelections of both the President and his fellow democrats are one of the reasons but I have a different take that is a little more devious. Tax revenue being generated is so low that the government has very few sources left to sponsor its aggressive spending. Wall Street is the only place left to tap into the Americans wallet and the capital gains on stock transactions are roughly 37% . These headlines come out, Wall Street cheers and Americans jump into the market. A few pump and dump headlines later from the administration and suddenly you have capital gains the government can now receive. The smart guys on Wall Street start reviewing the data and realize it’s bogus so they short the entire market and bring it all the way down 5 or 600 points, cover their positions (and generate more capital gains taxes) and then the pump and dump of the Administration begins again. Don’t believe it? Since January almost every economic indicator released by the government has been revised in a negative factor months after the report. Take a look at today’s numbers and print them out and put them in your desk or file. Odds are some time in October they will revise these numbers. If a company came out with this many revisions the SEC would shut them down for market manipulation. Maybe its time they looked at the federal government?  Read the story for your self an you decide

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September 16th, 2010


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