Thursday, January 24, 2008

About those cheery unemployment numbers

Woo hoo! Number of people filing for benefits falls for 4th straight month scream the headlines. Recession is over before it even started. Man Benny B is an even bigger hero than Alan G.

Except it's all smoke and mirrors.

Let's take a trip in the wayback machine to 2004. Who was making money hand over fist back then? Mortgage brokers. Real estate agents. General contractors. Electricians. Plumbers. Anyone involved with building or selling houses.

Millions of these folks were raking in 6 sometimes even 7 figure incomes. But - and this is NEVER mentioned in the MSM - they were all independent workers. They were not employed by anyone. Remember the disconnect in 2004 when the Dems were saying we were in a depression because no jobs were being created? Well they were 1/2 right. No "jobs" were being created in the traditional sense of an employer hiring an employee and paying him a salary. But there was plenty of money being made by lots of people.

Now that the housing crash is upon us, the millions of brokers and independent contractors are not technically "unemployed" so they don't show up on unemployment numbers. But their income has fallen substantially, making them virtually unemployed.

And also who built all those homes? Hint: they weren't named Joe and John they were named Jose and Juan. And of course they were paid under the table. So now when they have nothing to do, they too don't show up in the unemployment numbers. Now this might be a silver lining if Juan and Jose pack up and head back home without anything to do. However I have this feeling that most will just kick it old school in the Mexico Norte for a while. They will still use the ER as as their PCP. Their kids will get an free education. And since they will now be classified as poor, they will qualify for every possible gubermint welfare program known to man. Oh sure technically they don't qualify since technically you have to be a legal resident to qualify. But since the gubermint doesn't check immigration satus - you know since it's racist to ask for ID proving you have the right to free government money - and since they are here ILLEGALLY already and obviously could give a fuck about the law, that won't be a much a problem for them.

America, what a country!

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