How Interested is Congress in US Unemployment?

  1. Not very................

    WASHINGTON -- More than five years since the start of the Great Recession, unemployment remains a major economic problem in the United States, with long-term unemployment among its most stubborn aspects.
    Nobody told Congress.
    A hearing Thursday on long-term unemployment held before the 19-member Joint Economic Committee began with just a single lawmaker in attendance. Panelists testifying on the problem and its potential solutions spoke only to Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), the committee's vice-chair, for the beginning of the roughly 90-minute session.
    The all-but-complete absence of congressional interest was first documented by National Journal reporter Niraj Chokshi, who tweeted a photo of the hearing. Shortly after the photo was posted, several other lawmakers did trickle in to participate. Sen. Christopher Murphy (D-Conn.) arrived eight minutes into the hearing. Once the hearing had been under way for 35 minutes, Rep. John Delaney (D-Md.) was also in attendance, according to Chokshi. Eventually Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) also joined, bringing the crowd to four.

    Nice to know how much those elected to represent our interests will turn out for them. I expect if it was about the so called "job creators" they would have turned out in droves. That or it's the apathy of privilege.
  2. 14 Comments

  3. by   TopazLover
    Few Dem and Zero GOP attended. I did read they were on recess (as differentiated from spring break, I guess.)

    If the 112 and 113 Congress were paid by the hour or piecework they would starve, also be fired. Personally I think many need to spend two years at home, without their government pensions, and learn what all of us know. Those who don't do the work need to get out of the way so people who will do the work can accomplish something.

    I am quite tired of obstructionists. The debacle about Social Security and Chained CPI was proof positive that if Obama said anything it was the responsibility of the GOP to oppose it.
  4. by   tewdles
    Our congress is essentially broken at this time...this is simply more evidence.
    It actually makes my blood boil everytime I see congressmen on TV smirking with self importance over some bill they are NOT going to pass...they need to go...the obstructionists need to go...the legislators need to be respectful of their constituents.
  5. by   tewdles
    It occurred to me this morning that our Congress has been fixated on austerity measures above employment needs, or anything else for that matter, and now the world knows that their data to support that path is deeply flawed.

    I doubt that pride will allow any real direction change. Congress is broken indeed.
  6. by   StNeotser
    Austerity measures never made sense to anyone other than the 1%. Until we get money out of politics our system will continue to be broken. I'm not sure what path the average citizen can take other than out of the country. The issue then people appear to own the whole world. I can't go back home (UK) and expect anything different unfortunately

    the other thing that occurs to me.............if they don't make the rich or businesses pay their taxes............the middle class is shrinking quickly. Where are they going to get their tax revenue from for those wars?
  7. by   TopazLover
    Don't worry. They will probably find a way to tax the rich they don't like: Movie stars, sports figures and the like. They need to have more need for defense contractors to get more contracts to supply another unjust war.

    Look at how Beyonce and Jay-Z are hounded. They will figure a way to exclude them from the old boys club by taxing them differently. After all, we don't need art, we need war.
  8. by   22gawhitacre
    Interesting you have to point out two black people as examples. Would your black friend approve?

    Quote from aknottedyarn
    Don't worry. They will probably find a way to tax the rich they don't like: Movie stars, sports figures and the like. They need to have more need for defense contractors to get more contracts to supply another unjust war.

    Look at how Beyonce and Jay-Z are hounded. They will figure a way to exclude them from the old boys club by taxing them differently. After all, we don't need art, we need war.
  9. by   tewdles
    I find it difficult to appreciate the goals of our congress beyond austerity.
    The proposed legislation from the House is often almost alarming and is FAR from addressing employment challenges.
    Broken, broken, broken...
  10. by   herring_RN
    Bureau of Labor Statistics
    Employment Situation Summary

    Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 165,000 in April, and the unemployment
    rate was little changed at 7.5 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
    reported today. Employment increased in professional and business services,
    food services and drinking places, retail trade, and health care. ...

    ... In April, the number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27
    weeks or more) declined by 258,000 to 4.4 million; their share of the
    unemployed declined by 2.2 percentage points to 37.4 percent. Over the
    past 12 months, the number of long-term unemployed has decreased by
    687,000, and their share has declined by 3.1 percentage points. ...

  11. by   tewdles
    It seems the only unemployed person that Paul Ryan is/was concerned about is Mitt Romney.
  12. by   herring_RN
    U.S. Added 175,000 Jobs in May; Jobless Rate Rises to 7.6%

    Still, the cause behind the uptick in the unemployment rate, at least, was mildly encouraging: more people joined the labor force, perhaps indicating that Americans who have been sitting on the sidelines feel that they finally have a chance at finding a job. ...

    ... Despite signs of optimism from consumers and investors, other indicators of the health of the economy and the job market have been mixed. Average weekly hours and average hourly earnings, for example, have shown little improvement in recent months, according to the Labor Department. W
    ages are up just 2 percent from a year earlier, which bodes poorly for consumer spending. "The wage gains are very disconcerting, and particularly strange when you see these surveys of employers who say they have positions they can't fill," said Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics. "That means they should be bidding up wages."

    Wage growth may be held back by the composition of new jobs being created, he said, as there are a lot of jobs being added in low-paying sectors like retail. Restaurants and bars, for example, have added 337,000 jobs over the last year, and that category now makes up about 7.6 percent of all payroll jobs, its largest share on record. ...

    ... The federal government, on the other hand, lost 14,000 jobs in May, presumably a result of the across-the-board federal spending cuts, known as the sequester, implemented by Congress in March. ...

    ... Over the last three months, the federal government has shed 45,000 jobs, not including the furloughs that many federal employees are being placed on. The Pentagon, for example, has said that it would furlough 680,000 civilian workers starting in early July, with most workers losing about one paid day a week. ...
  13. by   herring_RN
  14. by   herring_RN
    Unemployment rate hits five-year low, eyes on the Fed

    ... U.S. employers hired more workers than expected in November and the jobless rate hit a five-year low of 7.0 percent, raising chances the Federal Reserve could start ratcheting back its bond-buying stimulus as soon as this month....

    ...Nonfarm payrolls increased by 203,000 jobs last month, following a similarly robust rise in October, the Labor Department said on Friday. The report, which showed broad gains in employment and a rise in hourly earnings, suggested strength in the economy heading into year-end.

    "It will add further confidence to the Fed of a reduced need for monetary stimulus in the U.S. economy. We now see the bias shifting in favor of a January tapering announcement," said Millan Mulraine, senior economist at TD Securities in New York...