Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Last Call For Damn Kids

And this is what the constant dumbing down of science education for the last 15 years has wrought among the Millennials.

For Christ's sake, guys.  This is the generation that sees global climate change wrecking your planet, but vaccinations are "meh, whatever, they probably cause autism"?  Seriously?

C'mon.  Be better than this.

In The Lie Of The Beholder

Gallup CEO and Chairman Jim Clifton puts the venerable polling organization's objectivity at risk, calling the Obama administration's 5.6% unemployment rate "The Big Lie".

Right now, we're hearing much celebrating from the media, the White House and Wall Street about how unemployment is "down" to 5.6%. The cheerleading for this number is deafening. The media loves a comeback story, the White House wants to score political points and Wall Street would like you to stay in the market. 
None of them will tell you this: If you, a family member or anyone is unemployed and has subsequently given up on finding a job -- if you are so hopelessly out of work that you've stopped looking over the past four weeks -- the Department of Labor doesn't count you as unemployed. That's right. While you are as unemployed as one can possibly be, and tragically may never find work again, you are not counted in the figure we see relentlessly in the news -- currently 5.6%. Right now, as many as 30 million Americans are either out of work or severely underemployed. Trust me, the vast majority of them aren't throwing parties to toast "falling" unemployment. 
There's another reason why the official rate is misleading. Say you're an out-of-work engineer or healthcare worker or construction worker or retail manager: If you perform a minimum of one hour of work in a week and are paid at least $20 -- maybe someone pays you to mow their lawn -- you're not officially counted as unemployed in the much-reported 5.6%. Few Americans know this. 
Yet another figure of importance that doesn't get much press: those working part time but wanting full-time work. If you have a degree in chemistry or math and are working 10 hours part time because it is all you can find -- in other words, you are severely underemployed -- the government doesn't count you in the 5.6%. Few Americans know this. 
There's no other way to say this. The official unemployment rate, which cruelly overlooks the suffering of the long-term and often permanently unemployed as well as the depressingly underemployed, amounts to a Big Lie.

The funny part is that the unemployment rate has been calculated the same since Clinton was president, which means that we've been in this "Big Lie" now for twenty years or so.  Mr. Clifton has been CEO of Gallup since 1988.

He waits until now to speak up that he has a problem with the way the Bureau of Labor Statistics measures unemployment.  It wasn't a problem until 2015.

Yeah, that's objective.

Tyranny Of The Toilet

Newly minted North Carolina GOP Sen. Thom Tillis will see your anti-vaxxer nonsense and raise you the freedom from having to wash your hands.

During a Q&A at the Bipartisan Policy Center on Monday, Tillis related a story from his time in the state legislature in 2010, complaining that the U.S. is “one of the most regulated nations in the history of the planet,”video via C-SPAN shows
“I was having a discussion with someone, and we were at a Starbucks in my district, and we were talking about certain regulations where I felt like ‘maybe you should allow businesses to opt out,'” the senator said. 
Tillis said his interlocutor was in disbelief, and asked whether he thought businesses should be allowed to “opt out” of requiring employees to wash their hands after using the restroom. 
The senator said he’d be fine with it, so long as businesses made this clear in “advertising” and “employment literature.” 
“I said: ‘I don’t have any problem with Starbucks if they choose to opt out of this policy as long as they post a sign that says “We don’t require our employees to wash their hands after leaving the restroom,” Tillis said. 
“The market will take care of that,” he added, to laughter from the audience.

Troll factor/Poe’s law quotient here approaching a kazillion.

It’s amazing stuff. We’ve gone from “Ebola is going to kill us all because our public health system is a nightmare!” during campaign season to “We’re the most regulated country ever, why do we even need to make people wash their hands?” three months later.

Beginning to think Tillis is the GOP response to SCOTUS possibly wrecking Obamacare subsidies. “Sick? You need the Free Market to decide.”


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