Tag Archives: unemployment

Why Our Presidential Candidates Will Never Create The Jobs They Are Promising For America

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“Donald Trump vows to create 25 million jobs over the next decade.” (NY Times 9/16/16).

“… under Hillary’s plans the economy would create 10.4 million jobs in her first term alone …” (Mark Zandi, former economic advisor to John McCain).

Of course, we all know that politicians are generally out of touch with reality and they regularly say things that have little substance in the real world… promotional “sound bites” if you will.

We know too, that the greatest reason for moving U.S. jobs to foreign shores is economic—goods can be produced more cheaply in foreign countries.

But, outsourcing jobs for economic reasons is the subject of a debate we don’t want to enter into here, because it is a debate that will never end.

At the same time, the issue of “jobs” in the U.S. is high on everyone’s mind and both candidates are making job creation one of the most important issues of their campaigns.

Unfortunately, the candidate’s promises for new jobs by bringing us back to the 1970’s and 1980’s are way off base.

We will never return to that era of job availability for the average person, and here are just a hint of a few reasons why:  Continue reading Why Our Presidential Candidates Will Never Create The Jobs They Are Promising For America

Big Jobs Gain in November … Really?

The media and the White House are having a field day celebrating the great news of the recent employment numbers… 321,000 new jobs added in November and a steady low unemployment rate of 5.8%.

The news also continues to dominate all of the first 10 pages of Google (I didn’t look beyond 10 pages).

Truly that is good news for 321,000 people who were looking for work, and I am happy for them.

But, here’s a group that can’t be all that thrilled about the current employment situation—the millennials (18 to 34 years of age).

Here’s why:

A recent survey by the U.S. Census Bureau shows that the millennials are much worse off today than the same age group over the prior three decades, as follows:

  • Only 65% of millennials currently have a job.
  • Close to 20% of them live in poverty.
  • Millennials with jobs earned an average $33,883 a year between 2009 and 2013—compared to $35,845 for the same age group back in 1980 (current dollar adjustment).
  • Over 30% of all millennials live at home, mainly because they can’t find a job.
  • Only about 2% of this age group (18 to 34) are veterans. In 1980 veterans comprised about 10% of this age group.

From the above, it appears that even though this generation has more education, are more diverse, and many of them speak multiple languages… they are having a tough time making their economic way in the U.S.

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Now, before you write me off as some kind of eeyore—Consider This!

Of the 535 lawmakers in Washington, over 50% of them are millionaires—excluding real estate holdings such as their homes… while only around 5% of their constituents are millionaires—including their homes.

In addition, our lawmakers annual salaries are $174,000 (plus perks and benefits), while the per capita annual income in 2012 was $28,051 (with no perks and few benefits).

 

So, here’s what I think: Our lawmakers and policy creators at all levels of government are totally out of touch with the people they are supposed to represent and serve.

Furthermore, I think it’s time to make our voices heard in Washington—not through riots and property damage to our neighbors, but through communication and the voter’s ballot. Somehow, our voices need to rise above the big money lobbyists and campaign contributors.

If we are going to have an actual sustained growth in our economy where everyone (who wants one) has a job—or better yet—an opportunity to start a business of their own—there must be change.

There needs to be some major changes in our representative government so we the people are being represented… instead of just the lobbyists and campaign contributors.

O.K., that’s what I think, now, what do you think? Are our lawmakers too out of touch with the real world to make the U.S. a better place for our younger generations (all of us for that matter)… or am I just being an eeyore, and everything will likely turn our fine for everyone anyway?

How do you feel about it?

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Wanted–Entrepreneurs!

In a prior post, I called attention to the declining numbers of new business startups over the past three years.

Here’s a chart showing the decline:

New Businesses Started

(Numbers [x1,000] from the Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity)

At the time I wrote the article, I assumed the decline was because there were now more jobs and fewer unemployed people. Those who had been contemplating starting a business must have simply gone back to work.

Apparently, that might not be the case…..

A recent article by Ben Casselman, FiveThirtyEight’s chief economics writer, presented the information that a much higher proportion (25%) of the long-term unemployed are simply “giving up” than are finding jobs (11%).

Here is Ben Casselman’s chart:

Share Giving Up

(Read Ben Casselman’s entire article here.)

I also may have been wrong when I wrote an article awhile back titled The End of the Technology Revolution? In this article I took the position that we were starting into an “Entrepreneurial Revolution.”

According to the two charts above—I was apparently mistaken. People are not turning from employment toward entrepreneurship… they are simply quitting.

And yet… 72% of employees say they don’t want to be an employee—they want to be entirely independent. That sounds like maybe they want to become entrepreneurs.

Or, do they just want to quit working—period?

If the labor force is shrinking, and new business startups are declining—what does the future hold for upcoming generations… other than government subsistence?

Well, I for one believe in the entrepreneurial spirit of Americans. Here’s why:

Courtesy LemonadeDetroit.com – Erik Proulx

What do you think about the people in Detroit who live in what many consider an industrial wasteland; but yet, see immense possibilities for small businesses in the abandoned buildings that formerly housed large corporations?

Do you think that if the people in Detroit can become entrepreneurs, others with fewer obstacles can also become entrepreneurs—instead of quitting altogether?

Moreover, could there even be an Entrepreneurial Revolution all across America in coming years and generations?

Why not?

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Unemployment and Opportunity

Well, unemployment rose above the 10 percent mark last month, and although the rate of lay-offs slowed, there is no sign that they will be halting anytime soon. Of course the politicos seem to take great pride in the fact that only 190,000 people lost their jobs last month. I am sure those 190,000 people take much comfort in that.

What do people do when they lose their jobs? I suppose many do nothing and just wait for their job to come back—if it ever does. Others decide to do something “special” with the new situation just forced on them.

Erik Proulx is one of the latter. In fact, he decided to make a documentary movie of what many people do when they become unemployed. The movie is titled, “Lemonade,” and will be released soon. The trailer can be viewed below.

(email subscribers view on my blog)

If the trailer is any indication, Lemonade should prove extremely interesting. Here’s what Erik had to say about his movie:

“…I hope even more that people walk away with an understanding of Lemonade’s intent: that losing your job can be devastating. But with the right perspective and a work ethic, it can also be the single greatest moment of your career.” —Erik Proulx

The point is that there are many things people could do—and for some, becoming unemployed provides the impetus they needed to follow their dreams.

As Erik said in a recent post “…Do something amazing!”

Have any of you ever been laid-off? What did you do when it happened?

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