Based on how it was calculated pre-1990s, Shadowstats economist John Williams has the real US unemployment rate at around 38%, heading higher.
According to the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), “millions” of jobless US workers aren’t getting benefits because applications they filed, or were unable to because of a “buckle(d)” system, weren’t processed.
EPI: “For every 10 people who said they successfully filed for unemployment benefits during the previous four weeks:
Three to four additional people tried to apply but could not get through the system to make a claim.
Two additional people did not try to apply because it was too difficult to do so.”
This disturbing reality shows that the official US unemployment rate is way understated.
It’s also evidence that millions of US jobless workers aren’t getting entitled to benefits.
EPI estimates that up to 13.9 million Americans haven’t filed for benefits or their applications weren’t processed because of a clogged system too hard to navigate.
“(A)bout half of potential UI (unemployment insurance) applicants are actually receiving benefits,” said EPI.
According to official numbers from mid-March through April 23, over 26 million newly unemployed US workers had their UI applications processed.
If nearly another near-14 million Americans laid off or furloughed aren’t included in official numbers for the above five-week period, it means up to 41 million US workers lost jobs since mid-March.
Because of a dysfunctional US UI application system, EPI estimates that benefits for America’s newly unemployed since mid-March may only be going to from “45% to 52%” of qualified individuals so far.
EPI’s data is from “a single-question survey (of) 25,000 respondents through Google Surveys, beginning April 14.”
“The survey was about 98% complete and had 24,607 respondents as of April 24.
It asked: “Did you apply for unemployment benefits in the last 4 weeks?”
Respondents could choose from one of six answers:
“I did not apply because I did not lose a job.
I did not apply because I am not eligible.
I did not apply because it was too difficult.
I tried but my application was rejected.
I tried but I could not get through.
I applied successfully.”
The above data indicate a much more dismal US jobs market reality than official numbers explain.
Economist Nouriel Roubini explained that COVID-19 arrived when “(t)he world (was already) drifting into a perfect storm of financial, political, socioeconomic, and environmental risks, all of which are now growing even more acute,” adding:
Policy blunders by the Fed, along with mismanagement by the Obama and Trump regimes, “made another crisis inevitable.”
“(N)ow that it has arrived, the risks are growing even more acute.”
Even if recovery occurs this year, a “Greater Depression will follow (because of mounting public) debts…(large-scale) defaults…loss of income for many households…unsustainable private-sector debt…(weakened demand because of) mass unemployment…downward pressure on wages…de-globalization,” and other factors.
Will Washington’s imperial fist make a bad situation worse?
Will US policymakers divert attention from economic duress for ordinary Americans by waging wars against invented enemies?
Will tyranny arrive in the US full-blown on the pretext of protecting national security at a time when Washington’s only enemies are invented?
Are the worst of times ahead? Or will enough fed up Americans no longer put up with how they’re harmed by the nation’s ruling class?
When governments fail their people, the way things are in the US, they forfeit the right to rule.
Civil disobedience and other forms of resistance become essential tactics for change.
The time is now to go big for a nation safe and fit to live in — polar opposite how things are now in the US and West.
By Stephen Lendman
Visit Stephen’s website – www.stephenlendman.org – Contact at firstname.lastname@example.org . His newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.” – www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html –
The 21st Century
The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of 21cir.
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