The news has emerged everywhere since Friday — the new jobs report is ringing in praises for President Joe Biden.
“The economy added 943,000 jobs in July, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. It was the best monthly showing in almost a year, bringing the unemployment rate down to 5.4 percent,” The Hill wrote on Saturday, labeling the development a success for Biden on one hand and a bane of conservatives’ existence on another.
But, despite all the numbers being tossed around, the establishment media outlets appear determined to avoid one specifically — the record number of job vacancies.
Here in rural North Georgia, it’s no secret that employers are having an especially hard time getting people to hold down a job anymore.
Just overhearing passersby discussing current events, you can determine it’s a source of much heartache for small business owners and widespread franchises alike.
People talk about it just as often as COVID itself — and it’s crippling the local economy and beyond.
Still, the damning fact of the matter is — the source of my community’s financial heartache extends across the nation.
“The ratio of openings to hires, despite easing in June, remained at historically elevated levels,” JPMorgan analyst Peter McCrory said, according to the British broadcaster.
Americans remain reluctant to return to the workforce for a plethora of reasons — one undoubtedly being incentivized unemployment benefits.
Others? Low pay, demands for “affordable childcare, generous unemployment benefits, and pandemic-related retirements and career changes,” to name a few listed in the BBC report.
But even several months ago in May, ABC News reported on several restaurant chains’ decisions to raise wages to attract workers amid the employment shortage — but perhaps this goes back to another point raised in BBC’s article.
Perhaps there are too many “low-skilled” jobs and not enough willing candidates to fill these roles.
Of course, these jobs may have not been vacant in the past, but extended unemployment benefits just might be enough to dissuade former restaurant employees from returning to a similar occupation.
Biden, however, during a July 21 CNN town hall special, said he doesn’t chalk up the extended benefits as detrimental to encouraging Americans to return to work.
“I don’t think it did much. But the point is, it’s argued that because the extended unemployment benefits kept people — they’d rather stay home and not work — than go to work,” he told CNN’s Don Lemon, according to a White House transcript.
“You don’t think it hurt — did that?” Lemon reiterated.
“I see no evidence it had any serious impact on it,” Biden responded.
Biden and Lemon’s exchange came in response to a small business owner’s question about how to incentivize employees to return to work.
Biden’s response? The long-touted leftist promotion of a $15 per hour minimum wage.
Because small businesses are rolling in the money, right?
But, the narrative remains that we’re turning a corner on the pandemic unemployment rate, with increases in employment in a number of essential industries, including food services and retail.
However, that rosy picture is avoiding the fact that the Biden economy isn’t nearly as healthy as the administration, and its mainstream media supporters, would have Americans believe.
Another interesting fact is … the unemployment rate we’re being given isn’t the “real” unemployment rate after all.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are six official categories for unemployment, with the designation depending on duration of joblessness and reasons for not working.
According to The Balance, a website that focuses on financial news, “the real unemployment rate (U-6) is a broader definition of unemployment than the official unemployment rate (U-3)” we’re familiar with.
“U-6” unemployment is calculated using the total number of persons unemployed. It includes the “underemployed, the marginally attached, and discouraged workers,” The Balance explained.
“U-3” is calculated using only those unemployed who have looked for a job within the last four weeks. This is the number typically presented by the establishment media.
Granted, we’re used to the U-3 percentage and most people don’t know the difference. However, it isn’t unreasonable to assume that the number of “discouraged” workers might be on the rise amid various pandemic developments — perhaps even out of personal safety measures.
Then again, paying able-bodied workers to stay home, and violating private property rights by preventing landlords from evicting deadbeat tenants is a surefire way to “discourage” a given percentage of the American population from feeling the need to be actively hunting for a job to support themselves.
Those are also measures that hurt a true economic rebound, under the guise of “helping.” But don’t expect Biden or his supporters to admit that.
According to The Balance, even U-6 unemployment fell between June and July — which is to be expected since businesses began reopening recently.
As the delta variant surges, however, we’re left to wonder how these numbers might change.
We still have a record number of job vacancies in the U.S. — there’s no doubt about that.
When will Biden tackle that issue head-on? Supplemental unemployment benefits are expected to expire later this year, so we’ll see how things change then.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.