37 Reasons Why "The Economic Recovery Of 2013" Is A Giant Lie

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by Michael Snyder of The Economic Collapse blog,

"If you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it."  Sadly, that appears to be the approach that the Obama administration and the mainstream media are taking with the U.S. economy.  They seem to believe that if they just keep telling the American people over and over that things are getting better, eventually the American people will believe that it is actually true. 

On Friday, it was announced that the unemployment rate had fallen to "7 percent", and the mainstream media responded with a mix of euphoria and jubilation.  For example, one USA Today article declared that "with today's jobs report, one really can say that our long national post-financial crisis nightmare is over."  But is that actually the truth?  As you will see below, if you assume that the labor force participation rate in the U.S. is at the long-term average, the unemployment rate in the United States would actually be 11.5 percent instead of 7 percent. 

There has been absolutely no employment recovery.  The percentage of Americans that are actually working has stayed between 58 and 59 percent for 51 months in a row.  But most Americans don't understand these things and they just take whatever the mainstream media tells them as the truth.

And of course the reality of the matter is that we should have seen some sort of an economic recovery by now.  Those running our system have literally been mortgaging the future in a desperate attempt to try to pump up our economic numbers.  The federal government has been on the greatest debt binge in U.S. history and the Federal Reserve has been printing money like crazed lunatics.  All of that "stimulus" should have had some positive short-term effects on the economy.

Sadly, all of those "emergency measures" do not appear to have done much at all.  The percentage of Americans that have a job has stayed remarkably flat since the end of 2009, median household income has fallen for five years in a row, and the rate of homeownership in the United States has fallen for eight years in a row.  Anyone that claims that the U.S. economy is experiencing a "recovery" is simply not telling the truth.  The following are 37 reasons why "the economic recovery of 2013" is a giant lie...

#1 The only reason that the official unemployment rate has been declining over the past couple of years is that the federal government has been pretending that millions upon millions of unemployed Americans no longer want a job and have "left the labor force".  As Zero Hedge recently demonstrated, if the labor force participation rate returned to the long-term average of 65.8 percent, the official unemployment rate in the United States would actually be 11.5 percent instead of 7 percent.

#2 The percentage of Americans that are actually working is much lower than it used to be.  In November 2000, 64.3 percent of all working age Americans had a job.  When Barack Obama first entered the White House, 60.6 percent of all working age Americans had a job.  Today, only 58.6 percent of all working age Americans have a job.  In fact, as you can see from the chart posted below, there has been absolutely no "employment recovery" since the depths of the last recession...

Employment-Population Ratio 2013

#3 The employment-population ratio has now been under 59 percent for 51 months in a row.

#4 There are 1,148,000 fewer Americans working today than there was in November 2006.  Meanwhile, our population has grown by more than 16 million people during that time frame.

#5 The "inactivity rate" for men in their prime working years (25 to 54) has just hit a brand new all-time record high.  Does this look like an "economic recovery" to you?...

Inactivity Rate Men

#6 The number of working age Americans without a job has increased by a total of 27 million since the year 2000.

#7 In November 2007, there were 121.9 million full-time workers in the United States.  Today, there are only 116.9 million full-time workers in the United States.

#8 Middle-wage jobs accounted for 60 percent of the jobs lost during the last recession, but they have accounted for only 22 percent of the jobs created since then.

#9 Only about 47 percent of all adults in America have a full-time job at this point.

#10 The ratio of wages to corporate profits in the United States just hit a brand new all-time low.

#11 It is hard to believe, but in America today one out of every ten jobs is now filled by a temp agency.

#12 Approximately one out of every four part-time workers in America is living below the poverty line.

#13 In this economic environment, there is intense competition even for the lowest paying jobs.  Wal-Mart recently opened up two new stores in Washington D.C., and more than 23,000 people applied for just 600 positions.  That means that only about 2.6 percent of the applicants were ultimately hired.  In comparison, Harvard offers admission to 6.1 percent of their applicants.

#14 According to the Social Security Administration, 40 percent of all U.S. workers make less than $20,000 a year.

#15 When Barack Obama took office, the average duration of unemployment in this country was 19.8 weeks.  Today, it is 37.2 weeks.

#16 According to the New York Times, long-term unemployment in America is up by 213 percent since 2007.

#17 Thanks to Obama administration policies which are systematically killing off small businesses in the United States, the percentage of self-employed Americans is at an all-time low today.

#18 According to economist Tim Kane, the following is how the number of startup jobs per 1000 Americans breaks down by presidential administration...

Bush Sr.: 11.3

Clinton: 11.2

Bush Jr.: 10.8

Obama: 7.8

#19 According to the U.S. Census Bureau, median household income in the United States has fallen for five years in a row.

#20 The rate of homeownership in the United States has fallen for eight years in a row.

#21 Back in 1999, 64.1 percent of all Americans were covered by employment-based health insurance.  Today, only 54.9 percent of all Americans are covered by employment-based health insurance, and thanks to Obamacare millions more Americans are now losing their health insurance plans.

#22 As 2003 began, the average price of a gallon of regular gasoline was about $1.30.  When Barack Obama took office, the average price of a gallon of regular gasoline was $1.85.  Today, it is $3.26.

#23 Total consumer credit has risen by a whopping 22 percent over the past three years.

#24 In 2008, the total amount of student loan debt in this country was sitting at about 440 billion dollars.  Today, it has shot up to approximately a trillion dollars.

#25 Under Barack Obama, the velocity of money (a very important indicator of economic health) has plunged to a post-World War II low.

#26 Back in the year 2000, our trade deficit with China was 83 billion dollars.  In 2008, our trade deficit with China was 268 billion dollars.  Last year, it was 315 billion dollars.  That was the largest trade deficit that one nation has had with another nation in world history.

#27 The gap between the rich and the poor in the United States is at an all-time record high.

#28 Right now, 1.2 million students that attend public schools in the United States are homeless.  That is a brand new all-time record high, and that number has risen by 72 percent since the start of the last recession.

#29 When Barack Obama first entered the White House, there were about 32 million Americans on food stamps.  Today, there are more than 47 million Americans on food stamps.

#30 Right now, approximately one out of every five households in the United States is on food stamps.

#31 According to the Survey of Income and Program Participation conducted by the U.S. Census, well over 100 million Americans are enrolled in at least one welfare program run by the federal government.

#32 In 2000, the U.S. government spent 199 billion dollars on Medicaid.  In 2008, the U.S. government spent 338 billion dollars on Medicaid.  In 2012, the U.S. government spent 417 billion dollars on Medicaid, and now Obamacare is going to add tens of millions more Americans to the Medicaid rolls.

#33 In 2000, the U.S. government spent 219 billion dollars on Medicare.  In 2008, the U.S. government spent 462 billion dollars on Medicare.  In 2012, the U.S. government spent 560 billion dollars on Medicare, and that number is expected to absolutely skyrocket in the years ahead as the Baby Boomers retire.

#34 According to the most recent numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau, an all-time record high 49.2 percent of all Americans are receiving benefits from at least one government program.

#35 The U.S. government has spent an astounding 3.7 trillion dollars on welfare programs over the past five years.

#36 When Barack Obama was first elected, the U.S. debt to GDP ratio was under 70 percent.  Today, it is up to 101 percent.

#37 The U.S. national debt is on pace to more than double during the eight years of the Obama administration.  In other words, under Barack Obama the U.S. government will accumulate more debt than it did under all of the other presidents in U.S. history combined.

Fortunately, it appears that most Americans are not buying into the propaganda.  According to a new CNN survey, the percentage of Americans that believe that the economy is getting worse far exceeds the percentage of Americans that believe that the economy is improving...

Americans views on the state of the nation are turning increasingly sour, according to a new national poll.

And a CNN/ORC International survey released Friday also indicates that less than a quarter of the public says that economic conditions are improving, while nearly four in ten say the nation's economy is getting worse.

Forty-one percent of those questioned in the poll say things are going well in the country today, down nine percentage points from April, and the lowest that number has been in CNN polling since February 2012. Fifty-nine percent say things are going badly, up nine points from April.

So what do you think?

Do you believe that the U.S. economy is getting better or getting worse?

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Callz d Ballz's picture


Unicorns now being sold on Craigslist

Dear Infinity's picture

UniCoins actively being traded for Au/Ag, I think people are wising up... look out below, the market for UniCoins could go bidless at any moment.

Meanwhile Au/Ag are drifting upward for a change... will it hold?

Al Huxley's picture

Are you kidding me?  Au/Ag won't hold OVERNIGHT let alone for any extended period. 

Al Huxley's picture

Sure, of course it doesn't, its the biggest wealth transfer in history from the middle class to the top tier of the financial elite, accomplished without violence or even complaint by those who are being slowly robbed.  What's your point?  What does that have to do with their relentless manipulation downward of the price of gold.

Anusocracy's picture

#39 41% of Americans have an IQ under 41.

Oldwood's picture

#40, Obama's approval rates are at an all time low. When his idiotic minions start to bail, you know we are fucked.

nmewn's picture

A 23% black unemployment rate in the 16-24 age group has to be wrong.

Clearly, this calls for yet another speech event about amnesty for illegals, who will work for much less than any legal. Or...they can just manipulate the numbers and put both classes on the dole.

Its a Win-Win!!!

When one only thinks about profit & power.

Handful of Dust's picture

"If you want to keep your recovery, you can keep your recovery."

Manthong's picture

I am a little bummed.

Before the canoe tipped over in the very large and deep lake, all I had was a few lumps of Au, Pt, Ag, Pb, Cu and some hardened tubular steel with spiral cuttings inside and some other machined parts..

Now there is nothing but hope for change..

in the dark messia and the Fed.


starfcker's picture

there is a very sobering article over on redstate today about the upcoming budget 'compromise'. i don't know how to link it. if that's the reality of where we're headed, i don't know what to think. paul ryan doing his best marco rubio imitation. bummer

Keyser's picture

And if you complain about your plight, you are branded a subversive and targeted by the Intelligencia. Long live the Empire. 

ZH Snob's picture

all that might be true, but did you see Denver get 51 points the other day?  it really looks like they're going to the Super Bowl this year.

disabledvet's picture

I agree with below...know what though? "the thing about depression is that it's so damn depressing." these clowns in DC and in New York are simply lacking in the courage to talk this thing up. they'll talk the MARKET up...although I think they stink at that, too actually (and ironically enough. Do "we" always have to be right around here or can we share the credit some time?) I mean there really is what should be really good news. Instead we get "Meh." (or worse..."go phuck yourself." disgusting.) I hate to sound like a Pollyanna here but I'm really mad at myself for not staying all in this year. Next year will be here soon...let's start the Depressing talk early! Fail Tesla! Hope your oil boom busts successful oil maverick! Hope your trades head into the toilet Wall Street maven! Give it up you ain't got a prayer!

Colonel Klink's picture

I can think of 700,000,000,000 reasons how the US taxpayers have been robbed.  Along with 536 acts of treason.

lakecity55's picture

beat me to it, Freddie.

"if you like your soviet, you can keep your soviet."

LetThemEatRand's picture

My favorite argument these fuckers make is, "but it would have been much worse had we not done all of these things."  Oh yeah?  Worse for whom?  Oh right.  For you fuckers.  

Al Huxley's picture

Well,that's the beauty of a sample size of one - even if nobody believes them, nobody can prove them wrong either.  And now they have all the money, so it's not like they give a fuck anyway.

BandGap's picture

Why make everyone suffer?


silverserfer's picture

Well, look at a couple things that resulted from the bailout. 

1. I woke up and started stacking. the bailout provied me time to stack and get my financial bearings.

2. ZH was created in 2009 as a reslt of major market shenanigens. I dont think we would be here on this site now if it didnt happen.


Fire Angel's picture

You make an excellent point. 


Fire Angel 

HardAssets's picture

LTER:  "My favorite argument these fuckers make is, "but it would have been much worse had we not done all of these things."  Oh yeah?  Worse for whom?  Oh right.  For you fuckers."

This article, and so many others, seems to think that 'they' give a shit about you and me and 'Joe Citizen'. 'They' don't. They don't give a rip about 'the economy' - - - just their own pocketbooks. If they cared about the nation, they would have ring fenced the derivative exposed banks and let them fail. They wouldn't be buying their toxic (fraudulent) shit paper. The private federal reserve is doing exactly what it was designed to do - - - protect their owners, the banks, & send the bill to the public.

They own the government. (When you grant someone the ability to print unlimited fiat - you ultimately given them power over everything in a society.)  All the 'homeland security' b.s. and building of the police state - - - - is to protect them. The wars fought overseas are to benefit them; if your kid dies in them, 'too bad' as far as they are concerned.  The 'laws' out of congress and the rulings from judges are from them, not for us . . . and definitely not according to any constitution.

'Economics', employment, growth, etc have nothing to do with it. Maybe a few naive professors believe that crap they were taught in school. They should have studied psychopath criminology instead.


jcaz's picture

LOL-  CNN told us not to believe the "negative nay-sayers", so gosh, things must be getting better, cause CNN would never lie....

Fuck you, Barry.

Ms. Erable's picture

So... we can look forward to the 2014 'Summer of Recovery VI" tour, with speeches from the usual assortment of criminals?

gloogle's picture




lakecity55's picture

i hope you meant "fuck you" with Reggie's dick.

EatYourCornTakeyourPill's picture

Cool story bro. My salary has gone up 35% over the last 2 years. I ain't complaining.

owensdrillin's picture

Making about $9.10 an hour now instead of $7.00. Cool.

CrashisOptimistic's picture

Actually my first thought was 1.35 X 0 = 0.

Xibalba's picture

Government employee, lawyer, or a bailed out banker? 

NeedtoSecede's picture

Contractor working on healthcare.gov.  Talk about job security!


neidermeyer's picture

None of the above , he went from one part time job to two.

denverdolomte's picture

So your making exactly what you would have been making a few years back, that is if you believe in inflation or buying power of paper. Congrats on the raises, I didn't down vote you, but what's a raise matter when we average annual loss on currency? Plus the rise in taxes and other anonymous fees we pay to enjoy serfdom here in the regions of Murrica. 


EatYourCornTakeyourPill's picture

43$ an hour actually and I disagree with you. Food isn't a high % of my income so I don't actually lose purchasing power as quickly as I gain it. Luckily, we can keep our standard of living high thanks to the Chinese slaves and American war machine. The U.S is also a huge exporter of food. All in all, I would say the outlook is nowhere near as gloomy as most of you here make it out to be. At least not in the U.S in the near future, obviously there are huge fundamental flaws but with the majority of foreign assets in U.S dollars, I would say don't worry about it for 6 more years at least. Sure the stock market and other asset bubbles will pop, but the USD train is nowhere near finished.

IridiumRebel's picture

Well good on you for choosing a wise livelihood. My wife makes a little more because she chose healthcare. Most everyone else of her friends are unemployed or working 50-60 hrs a week for less benes and pay. We all should feel better because you are doing well. I'll dodge bullets and traverse the crumbling facade of urban America to spread the joy to yonder 'Murica living paycheck to paycheck. If only we all did why you do! I do auto underwriting. Most people are bringing in about 25K and hav urinated on their credit. As for the dollar, sure we may make it another 6 years but th bell tolls for thee oh FRN....the bell does toll. Your perspective is uniquely American and watered by Bloomburgesque happy talk. It's folks like you tht get blindsided. I bet you are in finances.

artless's picture

To Iridium:

If he's in finance and making an hourly he's someone's bitch/secretary/or worse. That $43/hr translates to 89,440 / yr. I know waiters & bartenders in NYC that have made that much in a year. It really doesn't matter what the guy does. $40/hr isn't THAT crazy. I know people pushing paper in pointless fields like marketing making nearly 200,000 / yr. Of course in many cases that's after many years at the same place, etc. It's hard to pinpoint wages without taking those things into consideration.

I agree that the outlook expressed by CornTake is in the area of irrational exuberance and exhibits the typical short sighted view that is responsible for the situation in which we find ourselves.


The FRN survives at the pleasure of world trade. Because world trade is settles in Dollars around the globe it is backstopped for ehat would otherwise be tragic for another sovereign currency . If for instance oil began trading in another currency or perhaps settleed in GOLD the Dollar would be fucked. Of course The US Gov has proven time again that they are willing to blow thousnads of american serviocemen lives, Billions in bombs and military, and the world's trust to make sure THAT never happens. But it still might.

The 6 year timeline Corntaker suggests might just be correct. I expect TPTB still have a nit more to squezze out of the tax mules here in The US before the final reckoning. We're abot 2 yrs away from a diffrent puppet in The White House and after term one - six years- that could be the time when it reaches the end.

Corn's slightly smug "I'm doing great, I don't see the demise" attitude grates the nerves but his statements after that have some validity. I sense that in that part of the post he knows damn well that it's doomed.

Or maybe he doe not and he's just a completely delusional fucktard. Either way that anyone ACCEPTS what is going on or what has gone on in this country as even slightly moral or anything other than the absolutely criminal behavior that it is reveals themselves as nothing but another "little Eichman" to quote a complete douchebag professor. In other words PART OF THE PROBLEM.

IridiumRebel's picture

I agree. I bartended in NY and made about 50-60k doing 4 days a week.

RaceToTheBottom's picture

Nope, probably entry level STEM.  He would be making twice that if it weren't for H1Bs, but based on his maturity level, he is formulating a good argument FOR H1Bs.

All not part of the original argument, which is a huge majority has been left behind to save a few.  If bankstering went to the shits like the rest of us, they would have recovered when the rest does. 

There is nothing innately special about bankstering that requires there to be NO BUSINESS CYCLE.  They should live the fruits of their labors.

spankfish's picture

I beleive the US is a net importer of food... you must have confused all those Chilean grapes you have been eating as being from Kalifornication... no?

HardAssets's picture

It all depends on your individual situation. Quite a few of my family/friends are farmers. It wasn't long ago when times were tough, now they are doing extremely well. - - -A friend's nephew is former Army intel and is now works for a contractor doing who knows what in Iraq/Afghanistan. He makes a very nice six figure income with a high school education. He goes to work wearing a flak jacket and with an M-4 carbine within easy reach.

If you do that which fits in with the NWO plan (produce GMO crops, provide support ops for foreign wars, trade certain 'markets', provide goods for the fraction of the fraction of the less than 1% etc)  you may be doing very well.

I've seen this kind of hubris in those doing well. Their own situation is good, so they think the country must be doing good - or that whatever is going on now will continue into the future. A lot of guys thought that in 1929 . . . right before they jumped out of their office windows when the crash hit.

Many of us here have no problem with others success. More power to 'em. Its all relative and to some of us $86k ain't that big a deal. I know plumbers making more. Bragging about your raise when others may be facing tough times lacks class, however.

Just because youre doing well doesn't mean the nation as a whole is well or the path we're on is sustainable.

FredFlintstone's picture

Great news folks, we got 6 more years!

gloogle's picture

"...huge fundamental flaws..."


"...don't worry about it for 6 more years..."


Yep. You're short-sighted and willfully ignorant.  Must be upper-level managemt!!

Shad_ow's picture

Unless you work for President Boy, good luck keeping it that way. Good luck getting medical care, avoiding the coming chaos, and retiring comfortably in the future.

Keyser's picture

No, you just need to expand your horizons. The US has become a 3rd world shithole. There are plenty of those around the world where you can have a higher quality of life with a lower cost of living and much less stress than living the US. Just sayin'. 


RaceToTheBottom's picture

Very, Very Important point.  Until people know that there will be no wage recovery.

Kelley's picture

In that case, the economy must be just fine because your salary has gone up 35%. 


From now on, instead of relying on nationwide statistics, we should just check with you to see how you're doing.

ebworthen's picture

I raise my hand for #5, though I would like to be active if I could get paid a livable wage doing something productive.

Frozen's picture

Let's take stock here.  Half of all Americans are officially on the take.  How many of the remainder is NOT state workers, public officials, law, military, admin, managers, entertainment, hospitality, pharma, union or FIRE??