The Truth As We See It: Don’t Trust The Strawberry

Posted by on July 16, 2012

Don’t Trust The Strawberry!

So I was shocked to find out that my beloved strawberry is not a fruit at all, but an
accessory fruit. Sounds a bit like the get-away driver at a bank holdup. You know
an accessory to a crime. So who is the strawberry helping? Probably the Cantaloupe who has more aliases then a forger, since it can be called a mushmelon, muskmelon, cantalope, rockmelon or spanspek. By the way, even though the strawberry is not a berry at all, the banana is a berry.

Go figure!

So how does any of this tie into the wonderful world of business and economics?  Well let’s ponder the term unemployment. Does unemployment really mean not having a job?
As a former President once said, “It depends on what the meaning of the word…”

The latest “unemployment numbers” were just reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor
Statistics. Some people (I know none of you students) think that to get these figures on unemployment, the Government uses the number of persons who don’t have a job. Yeah, and if you believe that, I have some property to sell you. Others make think it’s based on the number of people filing claims for unemployment insurance (UI) benefits under State or Federal Government programs. Sure, and pigs can fly. So what about the people who are still jobless when their benefits run out, and those that are not eligible at all or
delay or never apply for benefits? So, quite clearly, UI information cannot be used as a source for complete information on the number of unemployed.  So how does our brilliant Government come up with these numbers? I probably should of asked how
do you students answer my Final questions – you got it, GUESS!!!!  It’s not quite that bad, but here is how they do it. There are about 60,000 households in the Government sample for which they survey. This translates into approximately 110,000 individuals, of which
1/4 is called each month, or roughly 27,500 individuals are called each month.
The argument being, if you don’t have a job, you will answer the phone.  Again, what planet does our Government come from? if I don’t have a job, I’m not paying my bills on time, which means that sure as heck, I am not answering the phone unless it is a call from my Granny.

Of course, the Government states that over 2200 “highly qualified” individuals make the calls. If you have ever been to the DMV you now understand what “highly
qualified” means.

But wait, it really gets interesting now (as opposed to confusing), once the Government has determined via their highly qualified callers dealing with an anxious population sitting by the phone waiting for a call (by the way, almost half of the US population does not use land-line phones anymore), they seasonally adjust the number. OMG – I knew the strawberry had something to do with this, ergo, accessory! As an example, this month, the BLS announced unemployment stayed at 8.2% or 12.7 million seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals. The actual number of unemployed individuals was 13.2 million. How would you like to be seasonally adjusted out of your benefits? That’s over 500k individuals that are just dropped out of the statistic. Of course, we are not done yet, because we need to adjust the number of jobs that are available. We all know that if a
job is not available, you can’t be unemployed, because the job doesn’t exist. Huh! Just love our Government.

So the Government says that we have 6.3 million fewer jobs. But the individuals that
had these jobs don’t count as unemployed, since their job doesn’t exist anymore. Got It!! Finally, we have all those individuals that don’t have a job, but have either given up looking or have taken a part time or lower paying job then what they had (underemployed). This amounts to 7.2 million workers.

So let me see, 13.2 million out of a job but looking, 6.3 million who don’t have a job but we can’t count them because their job does not exist and 7.2 million who have given up or working at MacDonald’s when they were a rocket scientist. In total 26.7 million people are screwed. That gives us a 16.2 % unemployed number. Hardly the 8.2% reported. That number is greater than the Great Depression unemployed number which had 11.4 million people out of work.

The moral of the story as the “Smoker” said in the X-files, “Don’t trust anyone!” Don’t be fooled that the strawberry is a berry or fruit. It is easy to fall into the trap that believes what everyone else believes. WE TEACH YOU BETTER STUDENTS!  Think for yourself and recognize 8.2% is hardly 16.2%.

If you want a berry, buy the banana!!


Thank you for your Interest in Minnesota School of Business.