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Submitted by Roanman on Sun, 02/21/2016 - 16:24


A fraction is made up of 2 numbers. The top number is called the NUMERATOR and the bottom number is called the DENOMINATOR. Inthe fraction  the 3 is the numerator and the 4 is the denominator.

DENOMINATORThis number shows how many equal 'pieces' something has been divided into. In the fraction,  the denominator is 4 which means there are 4 equal pieces that make up the whole.

NUMERATOR: This shows how many of those pieces there are. In the fraction  there are 3 out of the total of 4 pieces.

In order to convert a fraction to a percentage, divide the top of the fraction by the bottom, multiply by 100 and add a "%" sign.

So, just for fun, in our example above 3 divided by 4 equals .75. .75 multiplied by 100 equals 75%.

I bring this up as a preface to a discussion of the headline unemployment rate otherwise known as U3 which is presently at 4.9% according to the bureau of labor statistics.

U3 is calculated as follows, unemployment rate = number unemployed / civilian labor force x 100

So, here's an example of a calculation employing the above formula that yields a five percent unemployment rate.

unemployment rate = 5,000,000 / 100,000,000 x 100 = 5 percent

Got it? Of course you do, it's simple. But there is mischief afoot and that mischief is found in the catagory "Civilian Labor Force."

Civilian Labor Force" is defined by the Bureau of labot Statistics for purposes of this calculation as follows: All persons in the civilian noninstitutional population classified as either employed or unemployed.

Employed persons are defined for purposes of this calculation as follows: All persons who, during the reference week (week including the twelfth day of the month), (a) did any work as paid employees, worked in their own business or profession or on their own farm, or worked 15 hours or more as unpaid workers in an enterprise operated by a member of their family, or (b) were not working but who had jobs from which they were temporarily absent. Each employed person is counted only once, even if he or she holds more than one job. 


Unemployed persons are defined for purposes of this calculation as follows : All persons who had no employment during the reference week, were available for work, except for temporary illness, and had made specific efforts to find employment some time during the 4 week-period ending with the reference week. Persons who were waiting to be recalled to a job from which they had been laid off need not have been looking for work to be classified as unemployed. 


Lets go back up to our example above: unemployment rate = 5,000,000 / 100,000,000 x 100 = 5 percent unemployed.


Only let's suppose that we have only 75,000,000 in "Civilian Labor Force rather than the 100 million in the above example.

The calculation now looks like this, unemployment rate = 5,000,000 / 75,000,000 x 100 = 6.7 percent unemployed.


Let's say we have unly 60 million people in the labor force. The calculation now looks like this, unemployment rate = 5,000,000 / 60,000,000 x 100 = 8.3 percent unemployed.


It's easy to see here how increasing the numerator, in this case the number of people within the "Civilian Labor Force" reduces the unemployment rate without adding a single job.


How do you increase the numerator? It's pretty simple really. Let's say an employer decides, for any reason whatsover, that rather than employing one, fulltime, 40 hour a week employee, he would prefer to have two, 20 hour a week, part time employees. Presto, for purposes of this calculation you now have two employed people where before you only had one despite the fact that the total hours worked and subsequently compensated for hasn't change at all.


Lets take a look at the denominator or the number of people unemployed. The definition for "Unemployed Worker" requires that person to have actively looked for a job in the preceeding four weeks. If you stop looking, you no longer count within the calculation.


So again using our example above, unemployment rate = 5,000,000 / 100,000,000 x 100 = 5 percent, lets say 1 million unemployed people, for any reason, stopped looking for work last month. they no longer count as unemployed, so the calculation becomes as follows, unemployment rate = 4,000,000 / 99,000,000 x 100 = 4.04 percent.


You have to take that million people who stopped looking for a job from both the numerator and the denominator in order to make the defined calculation, but by virtue of the nature of division, the result is profound. You knock nearly 1% of the unemployment rate.


Here's some charts to think about the next time someone, most likely the President of The United States starts yammering about what a fine job he's done in reducing the rate of unemployment.






The chart below was taken from an NPR piece titled "Unfit For WorK the startling rise of disability in America". Click anywhere on the chart to pull up their presentation.



Maybe we'll look into U6 next week. I dunno. You could go look into it yourself if you want. Then tell me about it.


To quote almost everybody on taxes over and over and ......

Submitted by Roanman on Sun, 04/15/2012 - 08:47


The crime of taxation is not in the taking it; it's in the way it's spent.  Will Rogers
When there's a single thief, it's robbery.  When there are a thousand thieves, it's taxation.  Vanya Cohen
Taxation with representation ain't so hot either.  Gerald Barzan
Taxes, after all, are dues that we pay for the privileges of membership in an organized society.  Franklin D. Roosevelt
The taxpayer - that's someone who works for the federal government but doesn't have to take the civil service examination.  Ronald Reagan
America is a land of taxation that was founded to avoid taxation.  Laurence J. Peter
I'm proud to pay taxes in the United States; the only thing is, I could be just as proud for half the money.  Arthur Godfrey

Unquestionably, there is progress.  The average American now pays out twice as much in taxes as he formerly got in wages.  H.L. Mencken
The nation should have a tax system that looks like someone designed it on purpose.  William Simon
We must care for each other more, and tax each other less.  Bill Archer
The expenses of government, having for their object the interest of all, should be borne by everyone, and the more a man enjoys the advantages of society, the more he ought to hold himself honored in contributing to those expenses.  Anne Robert Jacques Turgot
The art of taxation consists in so plucking the goose as to get the most feathers with the least hissing.  Jean Baptist Colbert, attributed
What at first was plunder assumed the softer name of revenue.  Thomas Paine
Did you ever notice that when you put the words "The" and "IRS" together, it spells "THEIRS?"  Unknown
We have long had death and taxes as the two standards of inevitability.  But there are those who believe that death is the preferable of the two.  At least with death, it doesn't get worse every time Congress meets." Erwin N. Griswold

People who complain about taxes can be divided into two classes:  men and women.  Unknown
Taxes:  Of life's two certainties, the only one for which you can get an automatic extension.  Unknown
To force a man to pay for the violation of his own liberty is indeed an addition of insult to injury.  Benjamin Tucker
Today, it takes more brains and effort to make out the income-tax form than it does to make the income.  Alfred E. Neuman
I am thankful for the taxes I pay because it means that I'm employed.  Nancie J. Carmody
The point to remember is that what the government gives it must first take away.  John S. Coleman
Philosophy teaches a man that he can't take it with him; taxes teach him he can't leave it behind either.  Mignon McLaughlin
The government’s view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases:  If it moves, tax it.  If it keeps moving, regulate it.  And if it stops moving, subsidize it.  Ronald Reagan
I like to pay taxes.  With them I buy civilization.  Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
The wages of sin are death, but after they take the taxes out, it's more like a tired feeling, really.  Paula Poundstone
You must pay taxes.  But there's no law that says you gotta leave a tip.  Morgan Stanley advertisement
U.S. Internal Revenue Service: an agency modeled after the revenue raising concepts of the 19th century economist, Jesse James.  Robert Brault 
There's nothing wrong with the younger generation that becoming taxpayers won't cure.  Dan Bennett
There may be liberty and justice for all, but there are tax breaks only for some.  Martin A. Sullivan
The income tax created more criminals than any other single act of government.  Barry Goldwater
Taxes grow without rain.  Jewish Proverb
I don't know if I can live on my income or not - the government won't let me try it.  Bob Thaves, "Frank & Ernest"
Of all debts, men are least willing to pay their taxes; what a satire this is on government.  Ralph Waldo Emerson
Any tax is a discouragement and therefore a regulation so far as it goes.  Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
The flat tax would be so simple, you could fill it out on a post card.  A post card that would say, in effect, having a wonderful time; glad most of my money is here.  Steve Forbes
Question:  " I understand that Congress is considering a so-called 'flat' tax system.  How would this work?"  Answer:  "If Congress were to pass a 'flat' tax, you'd simply pay a fixed percentage of your income, and you wouldn't have to fill out any complicated forms, and there would be no loopholes for politically connected groups, and normal people would actually understand the tax laws, and giant talking broccoli stalks would come around and mow your lawn for free, because Congress is NOT going to pass a flat tax, you pathetic fool."  Dave Barry
A fine is a tax for doing something wrong.  A tax is a fine for doing something right.  Unknown
The payment of taxes gives a right to protection.  James M. Wayne
If we don't do something to simplify the tax system, we're going to end up with a national police force of internal revenue agents.  Leon Panetta
What is the difference between a taxidermist and a tax collector?  The taxidermist takes only your skin.  Mark Twain
All the Congress, all the accountants and tax lawyers, all the judges, and a convention of wizards all cannot tell for sure what the income tax law says.  Walter B. Wriston
The politicians say "we" can't afford a tax cut.  Maybe we can't afford the politicians.  Steve Forbes
Intaxication:  Euphoria at getting a refund from the IRS, which lasts until you realize it was your money to start with.  Unknown
You don't pay taxes - they take taxes.  Chris Rock
People try to live within their income so they can afford to pay taxes to a government that can't live within its income.  Robert Half
I can give you 1040 good reasons why I hate the government.  The Quote Garden
Everyone of these quotes came from Quote Garden

Your government at work for the banks ... part 2

Submitted by Roanman on Sat, 01/21/2012 - 16:44


This from Reuters who unlike most of the rest of our national media, has recently awakened to the smell of coffee and is now rolling.

Ah well, better late than never.

Not a week goes by that somewhere in my reading somebody doesn't marvel that more than 3 years into this mess nobody is in jail or even under indictment for all of the fraud and basic malfeasance that has taken place at the banks.

Here's your likely answer.

As always click anywhere below for the entire story.

Highly educational.


Insight: Top Justice officials connected to mortgage banks



(Reuters) - U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and Lanny Breuer, head of the Justice Department's criminal division, were partners for years at a Washington law firm that represented a Who's Who of big banks and other companies at the center of alleged foreclosure fraud, a Reuters inquiry shows.

The firm, Covington & Burling, is one of Washington's biggest white shoe law firms. Law professors and other federal ethics experts said that federal conflict of interest rules required Holder and Breuer to recuse themselves from any Justice Department decisions relating to law firm clients they personally had done work for.

Both the Justice Department and Covington declined to say if either official had personally worked on matters for the big mortgage industry clients. Justice Department spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler said Holder and Breuer had complied fully with conflict of interest regulations, but she declined to say if they had recused themselves from any matters related to the former clients.

Reuters reported in December that under Holder and Breuer, the Justice Department hasn't brought any criminal cases against big banks or other companies involved in mortgage servicing, even though copious evidence has surfaced of apparent criminal violations in foreclosure cases.

The evidence, including records from federal and state courts and local clerks' offices around the country, shows widespread forgery, perjury, obstruction of justice, and illegal foreclosures on the homes of thousands of active-duty military personnel.


Change you can believe in.


To quote Casey Stengel over and over and .....

Submitted by Roanman on Sun, 01/15/2012 - 07:04


Never make predictions, especially about the future.

Good pitching will always stop good hitting and vice-versa.

All right , line up alphabetically according to your height.

Don't cut my throat, I may want to do that later myself.

Being with a woman all night never hurt no professional baseball player. It's staying up all night looking for a woman that does him in.

I got players with bad watches - they can't tell midnight from noon.  

We are in such a slump that even the ones that are drinkin' aren't hittin'.

You gotta learn that if you don't get it by midnight, chances are you ain't gonna get it, and if you do, it ain't worth it.

Don't drink in the hotel bar, that's where I do my drinking. (To Whitey Ford)

I came in here and a fella asked me to have a drink. I said I don't drink. Then another fella said hear you and Joe DiMaggio aren't speaking and I said I'll take that drink.

I don't like them fellas who drive in two runs and let in three.

I was not successful as a ball player, as it was a game of skill.

Old timers games, weekends, and airplane landings are alike. If you can walk away from them, they're successful.

If we're going to win the pennant, we've got to start thinking we're not as good as we think we are.

Now there's three things that can happen in a ball game: you can win, you can lose, or it can rain.

Managing is getting paid for home runs that someone else hits.

The secret of managing is to keep the guys who hate you away from the guys who are undecided.

Son, we'd like to keep you around this season but we're going to try and win a pennant.

Nobody knows this but one of us just got traded to Kansas City.

I feel greatly honored to have a ballpark named after me, especially since I've been thrown out of so many.

You got to get twenty-seven outs to win.

Most games are lost, not won.

You gotta lose 'em some of the time. When you do, lose 'em right.

The Yankees don't pay me to win every day, just two out of three.

Without losers, where would the winners be?

You have to go broke three times to learn how to make a living.

There comes a time in every man's life, and I've had plenty of them.

The trick is growing up without growing old.


Einstein Gets It Right

Submitted by Roanman on Thu, 05/05/2011 - 17:49


This story has been flying around all day.

I've read three different versions of it.

As you might well expect the best, which is to say clearest and easiest to understand comes from NASA.

As always click the drawing to read the entire piece.

Be smarter than your friends.


NASA Announces Results of Epic Space-Time Experiment

Einstein was right again. There is a space-time vortex around Earth, and its shape precisely matches the predictions of Einstein's theory of gravity.

Researchers confirmed these points at a press conference today at NASA headquarters where they announced the long-awaited results of Gravity Probe B (GP-B).

"The space-time around Earth appears to be distorted just as general relativity predicts," says Stanford University physicist Francis Everitt, principal investigator of the Gravity Probe B mission.



Time and space, according to Einstein's theories of relativity, are woven together, forming a four-dimensional fabric called "space-time." The mass of Earth dimples this fabric, much like a heavy person sitting in the middle of a trampoline. Gravity, says Einstein, is simply the motion of objects following the curvaceous lines of the dimple.



To quote Ezra Pound over and over and ...

Submitted by Roanman on Wed, 03/16/2011 - 22:28


 “Real education must ultimately be limited to men who insist on knowing, the rest is mere sheep-herding.”

“When you cannot make up your mind which of two evenly balanced courses of action you should take - choose the bolder.”

“If a man isn't willing to take some risk for his opinions, either his opinions are no good or he's no good”

 “Either move or be moved.”

 “Properly, we should read for power. Man reading should be man intensely alive. The book should be a ball of light in one's hand.”

“There is no reason why the same man should like the same books at eighteen and forty-eight.”

“Music begins to atrophy when it departs too far from the dance... poetry begins to atrophy when it gets too far from music.”

 “In our time, the curse is monetary illiteracy, just as inability to read plain print was the curse of earlier centuries.”

“I have never known anyone worth a damn who wasn't irascible.”  What I've been saying.

“With one day's reading a man may have the key in his hands.”

 “The worst mistake I made was that stupid, suburban prejudice of anti-Semitism.”

“Why fight for a flag when you can buy one for a nickel.”

“Wars are made to make debt.”

“The real trouble with war (modern war) is that it gives no one a chance to kill the right people.”

 “But the one thing you should not do is to suppose that when something is wrong with the arts, it is wrong with the arts ONLY.”

“The art of letters will come to an end before A.D. 2000. I shall survive as a curiosity.”


The CBO Reveals 10 Cringeworthy Facts About U.S. Government Spending

Submitted by Roanman on Thu, 01/27/2011 - 18:42


From Business Insider, quick, easy and a revelation.

As alway, clicking on the photo will link you to the entire piece.

Way double highly recommended.



That's a very nice suit ..... seriously.


To quote Richard Russell, once again

Submitted by Roanman on Tue, 04/13/2010 - 19:20

Still Reading on a Sunday Morning

Submitted by Roanman on Sun, 03/28/2010 - 14:59

Social Security? I believe I have isolated the problem

Submitted by Roanman on Sat, 03/20/2010 - 16:28


Ok, in the first chart below, we see the ratio of workers to beneficiaries go from 41.9 to 3.3.

Then, in the table further below, we see the tax rate move from 2% to 15.3%.

Hmmmmmmm .............



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