Well, It’s New To Me

I imagine that quite a few of you have seen this already, but it was a fresh pile in my inbox (Which I’m actually checking again) and figured maybe some of y’all might enjoy it.

Understanding US Department of Labor statistics by Abbott and Costello


Costello:  I want to talk about the unemployment rate in America .
Abbott:   Good subject, terrible times, it’s 9%.
Costello:  That many people are out of work.
Abbott:  No, that’s 17%.
Costello: You just said 9%.
Abbott: 9% unemployed.
Costello: Right, 9% out of work.
Abbott: No, that’s 17%.
Costello: Okay, so it’s 17% unemployed?
Abbott: No, that’s 9%.
Costello: Wait a minute, is it 9% or 17%?
Abbott: 9% are unemployed. 17% are out of work.
Costello: If you’re out of work you are unemployed.
Abbott: No, you can’t count the out-of-work as the unemployed. You have to look for work to be unemployed.
Costello: BUT THEY ARE OUT OF WORK!
Abbott: No, you miss the point.
Costello: What point?
Abbott: Some one who doesn’t look for work can’t be counted with those who look for work, it wouldn’t be fair.
Costello: To whom?
Abbott: The Unemployed.
Costello: But they are all out of work.
Abbott: No, the unemployed are actively looking for work;  those who are out of work stopped looking.  They gave up, and if you give up you are no longer in the ranks of the unemployed.
Costello: So, if you’re off the unemployment role, that would count as less unemployment?
Abbott: Unemployment would go down, absolutely!
Costello: The unemployment just goes down because you don’t look for work?
Abbott: Absolutely it goes down. That’s how you get 9%. Otherwise it would be 17%.
You don’t want to read about 17% unemployment do ya?
Costello: That would be frightening.
Abbott: Absolutely.
Costello: Wait, I got a question for you; that means there are two ways to bring down the unemployment number?
Abbott: Two ways is correct.
Costello: Unemployment can go down if someone gets a job?
Abbott: Correct.
Costello: And unemployment can also go down if you stop looking for a job?
Abbott: Bingo.
Costello: So there are two ways to bring unemployment down, and the easier of the two is to just stop looking for work.
Abbott: Now you’re thinking like a Democrat.

3 comments

  1. 1
    LC Xystus growls and barks:

    Nyuk, nyuk!

    Hey, I’m foist (but not on foist)!

  2. 2
    Mark12A growls and barks:

    “Now you’re thinking like a democrat” sounds a lot like a mortal insult.

  3. 3
    LC HJ Caveman82952 growls and barks:

    :em05: That’s great, Bro’…that’s great…..