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Most Unemployed No Longer Receive Benefits

From the Associated Press:

Most of the unemployed no longer receive benefits

Sat, Nov 5, 2011

WASHINGTON (AP) — The jobs crisis has left so many people out of work for so long that most of America’s unemployed are no longer receiving unemployment benefits.

Early last year, 75 percent were receiving checks. The figure is now 48 percent — a shift that points to a growing crisis of long-term unemployment. Nearly one-third of America’s 14 million unemployed have had no job for a year or more.

Congress is expected to decide by year’s end whether to continue providing emergency unemployment benefits for up to 99 weeks in the hardest-hit states. This is so artfully worded we aren’t quite sure what is being said. But we suspect the AP is pushing for the extension of unemployment benefits that is part of the Obama jobs bill. We believe that would give the unemployed benefits beyond 99 weeks.

Something the AP doesn’t seem to be able to bring itself to say.

If the emergency benefits expire, the proportion of the unemployed receiving aid would fall further. The ranks of the poor would also rise. The Census Bureau says unemployment benefits kept 3.2 million people from slipping into poverty last year. It defines poverty as annual income below $22,314 for a family of four.

Why don’t we just give everyone a guaranteed income over the poverty rate, and wipe out poverty completely?

Yet for a growing share of the unemployed, a vote in Congress to extend the benefits to 99 weeks is irrelevant. They’ve had no job for more than 99 weeks. They’re no longer eligible for benefits.

Their options include food stamps or other social programs. Nearly 46 million people received food stamps in August, a record total. That figure could grow as more people lose unemployment benefits.

So could the government’s disability rolls. Applications for the disability insurance program have jumped about 50 percent since 2007

Because being unemployed is a disability, as least according to the government, apparently.

The number of unemployed has been roughly stable this year. Yet the number receiving benefits has plunged 30 percent.

According to Obama’s bureau of Labor Statistics we began the year at 9% unemployment, and we are still at 9%. But given the constant increase to the population, the actually number of unemployed must have gone up. But never mind such details.

Government unemployment benefits weren’t designed to sustain people for long stretches without work. They usually don’t have to. In the recoveries from the previous three recessions, the longest average duration of unemployment was 21 weeks, in July 1983.

By contrast, in the wake of the Great Recession, the figure reached 41 weeks in September. That’s the longest on records dating to 1948. The figure is now 39 weeks.

More history making by Mr. Obama. And goodness knows these longer periods of unemployment have nothing to do with extending unemployment benefits longer.

Weekly unemployment checks average about $300 nationwide. If the extended benefits aren’t renewed, growth could slow by up to a half-percentage point next year, economists say.

The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that each $1 spent on unemployment benefits generates up to $1.90 in economic growth. The CBO has found that the program is the most effective government policy for increasing growth among 11 options it’s analyzed

And we are supposed to believe them. In fact, when has the CBO ever been right about anything? From the cost of Medicare to the cost of Obama-Care.

They are partisan hacks completely under the thumb of the Democrat Party.

Jon Polis lives in East Greenwich, R.I., one of the 20 states where 99 weeks of benefits are available. He used them all up after losing his job as a warehouse worker in 2008. His benefits paid for groceries, car maintenance and health insurance.

He could afford health insurance on his unemployment benefits — at 55? We don’t believe it.

Now, Polis, 55, receives disability insurance payments, food stamps and lives in government-subsidized housing

You see? If we don’t give people unemployment benefits they are just going to end up getting Social Security disability and food stamps and government housing. So we might as well just give them unemployment benefits for the rest of time.

Congress has extended the program nine times.

Something else that is surely unprecedented.

But it might balk at the $45 billion cost. It will be the first time the Republican-led House will vote on the issue.

Those evil Republicans don’t want to grow the economy.

This article was posted by Steve on Monday, November 7th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

One Response to “Most Unemployed No Longer Receive Benefits”

  1. Petronius says:

    If memory serves, the people who are the subject of this article are not counted among the unemployed. Of course the official unemployment numbers do not measure the number of people who are actually out of work. Rather, they count only those people who have applied for work within the last four weeks and who are actively registered with government unemployment offices. The actual number of unemployed more than doubles when we add the following :

    • those who have been laid off and run out of unemployment benefits
    • those who temporarily stopped working due to illness, injury, or pregnancy
    • those unemployed who have applied for a job during, say, the last six months
    • those people who are working in part time or temp jobs who want a full time job
    • discouraged workers who have given up looking or have taken early retirement

    If you add to these the number who are disabled, then the unemployment figure skyrockets.

    SG : “But given the constant increase to the population, the actual number of unemployed must have gone up.”

    Ever wonder how many new workers enter the workforce each month?

    100,000 by natural increase is the generally accepted figure.

    But how many from immigration? Nobody has a good fix on the immigration numbers –– not even the government. The government does not even have an accurate fix on the numbers who are legally admitted.

    But here’s my rough swag of annual immigration :

    •  1 million LPR green card immigrants
    • 1 million legal immigrants from other sources (adjustment of status, refugees, asylees, chain migrants, H1B visas, lottery winners, H2A and H2B guest workers, et al.)
    • 1 million illegals across the Mexican border
    • 3 million visa overstays (5% of 60 million visas issued annually)

    Total annual immigration from all sources, legal and illegal: 6 million.

    Let’s assume only half of those 6M immigrants (documented and undocumented) come here to work, and the other half do not want to work (they either go on welfare or are dependents of those who work). Say 3M then.

    3M per year ÷ 12 mos. = 250,000 new immigrant workers per month.

    100,000 from natural increase plus 250,000 immigrants = 350,000 new job seekers per month.

    You object that my number is too high? OK, let’s cut it in half = 175,000 new entrants per month.

    That means that, conservatively, we have to create 175,000 new jobs per month just to stay even. We are nowhere near creating that number of new jobs.

    In other words, the number of unemployed is growing substantially every month.

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