View From Purcell, Oklahoma: Abbott and Costello: Unemployment in America

Abbott and Costello: Unemployment in America


Abbott and Costello


Abbott and Costello

COSTELLO: I want to talk about the unemployment rate in America .

ABBOTT: Good subject. Terrible times. It's about 9%.

COSTELLO: That many people are out of work?

ABBOTT: No, that's 16%.

COSTELLO: You just said 9%.

ABBOTT: 9% Unemployed.

COSTELLO: Right 9% out of work.

ABBOTT: No, that's 16%.

COSTELLO: Okay, so it's 16% unemployed.

ABBOTT: No, that's 9%...

COSTELLO: WAIT A MINUTE. Is it 9% or 16%?

ABBOTT: 9% are unemployed. 16% are out of work.

COSTELLO: If you are 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 my point.

COSTELLO: What point?

ABBOTT: Someone who doesn't look for work, can't be counted with those who look for work. It wouldn't be fair.


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 roles, 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 to 9%. Otherwise it would be 16%. You don't want to read about 16% unemployment do ya?

COSTELLO: That would be frightening.

ABBOTT: Absolutely.

COSTELLO: Wait, I got a question for you. That means they're 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 go down if you stop looking for work?

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 an economist.

COSTELLO: I don't even know what the hell I just said!

And now you know why Obama's unemployment figures are improving!

Remember, statistics is the art of taking numbers and manipulating them say exactly what you want.

The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.

Licensed to SELL - Dedicated - Experienced - Honest - Than Maynard - Purcell, OK

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Than Maynard
REALTOR, CRB, Certified Short Sale agent, Certified Foreclosure Agent, Accredited REO Agent
Coldwell Banker Heart of Oklahoma Real Estate
1726 N Green Avenue, Purcell, OK 73080
CELL: (405) 990-8862
OFFICE: (405) 527-3012



We never stop moving 3d

Comment balloon 11 commentsThan Maynard • April 20 2012 11:41AM


I hope that those unemployment rates will be lowered.

Have a nice weekend.

Posted by Joshua Zargari, MJ Decorators Workshop (MJ Decorators Workshop LI staging and home decorating) about 8 years ago

Yeah.  Makes perfect sense to me..... I could say a few words but I think I should not.....

Posted by Marilyn Harrell, Wixom Lake - Beaverton MI (ReMax Riverhaven) about 8 years ago

Thad - Funny.  Love watching/listening to clips from those guys.  I'd wish they would be consistent on how they measure it.  The "underemployed" number is always funny too me.  The % of folks who think they are underemployed is probably pretty high regardless of what the economy is like.  I look at the bottom line ... % of folks not working.  I also know that only some of that can be controlled by any one administration.  Entitlements or not.  BTW, I'm not a huge entitlement guy but they do have their place .... albeit a much smaller place than they are currently at.  While I realize part of that is due to the dire straits the economy was in (looks like we are improving, slowly but surely) ... entitlement can be a dangerous thing.

Posted by Jason Sardi, Your Agent for Life (Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina) about 8 years ago

I can hear Abbott and Costello saying these words right now.  So true!

Posted by William Feela, Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No. (WHISPERING PINES REALTY) about 8 years ago

If it wasn't so true, this would be funny.  It's all in how you "skew the numbers", isn't it?

Posted by Juli Vosmik, Scottsdale/Cave Creek, AZ real estate 480-710-0739 (Dominion Fine Properties) about 8 years ago

Perfect, Than!   I love Abbott and Costello; I can visualize this exchange.

Posted by Fred Griffin Tallahassee Real Estate, Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker (Fred Griffin Real Estate) about 8 years ago

Have we changed the way we "count" unemployment in the last 30 years?

Posted by Karl Hess, on The Jersey Shore (Keller Williams Shore Properties) about 8 years ago

It's that fuzzy math again.  They also don't count contractors and self-employed people that don't have any work to do.  I know roofers and Realtors that can never collect unemployment because they can't fire themselves but are still out of work.

Posted by Rob Arnold, Metro Orlando Full Service - Investor Friendly & F (Sand Dollar Realty Group, Inc.) about 8 years ago

Than, Abbott and Costello were always so funny....Obama is not!

Posted by Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®, Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate (Vision Quest Realty) about 8 years ago

I don't know if they have always counted unemployment this way. I know when Bush was president 4.9% unemployment was terrible and the MSM always talked about underemployment and how the TRUE unemployment was much higher because people had quit looking!! And high gas and oil prices where because Bush was in bed with "Big Oil" and was increasing prices for his cronies benefit.

Yet we have Obama whose unemployment rate is 9% (every report is unexpectedly higher than expected.) Every weekly report for the last 3 months has been revised upward.But the MSM talks about how much "better" the economy is or how much worse it could be. They DO NOT talk about the under-employed or those who have quit looking. THe true unemployment rate is around 19%, which includes those who have given up looking. I believe Bush's was around 9% which the MSM spouted on a regular basis.

Gas prices are at all time highs, unemployment is around 19%, but there is no gloom and doom from the talking heads. It is "Give Obama 4 more years and he will fix it all." The MSM, the Obama administration and anyone else that gets a chance still tries to blame Bush for the current economy. Those same pundits claimed Bush's growing economy for Clinton...even though we had actually been in the early part of a recession at the end of CLinton's last year. No credit for holding the country together after 9/11, no credit for keeping the economy going during that same time, but 3 years after being voted out of office this is Bush's economy? What a bunch of idiots!

Posted by Than Maynard, Broker - Licensed to List & Sell - 405-990-8862 (Coldwell Banker Heart of Oklahoma) about 8 years ago

Four more years won't fix anything, but America will be in a fix that's for sure. We need leadership in the White House, not liberal arrogance.

Posted by Dale Bledsoe, Realtor in Tracy, California (Crown Key Realty) about 8 years ago