February 6, 2013 § Leave a Comment
Today’s Local Bad News:
Illinois companies warned in January that they may lay off as many as 1,200 workers in the next two months, according to filings with the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.
The economy sucks and the media doesn’t want to talk about it. Manufacturing in Illinois is on life support. It’s questionable if it can be revived.
To this mess we add:
Quinn wants Illinois’ minimum wage to increase from $8.25 to $10 an hour, according to a source familiar with the planned remarks. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour, but Illinois’ rate has been higher for years.
via Chicago Tribune.
That will not help growth. It will not help poor communities. It will not help high school drop-outs or college professors. It’s an inflation creator and job killer. We don’t need the cost of fast food going up. We don’t need the cost of goods at Target going up. We’re taxed to death already. The state is $100+ billion in the red and he’s upset that some kid’s making $8.75/hr making pizza’s.
Illinois is dying. The Machine is driving full speed off the edge of the cliff.
December 3, 2012 § Leave a Comment
This first came up (recently at least) with the Hostess workers:
Interviews with more than a dozen workers showed there was little sign of regret from employees who voted for the strike. They said they would rather lose their jobs than put up with lower wages and poorer benefits.
“They’re just taking from us,” said Kenneth Johnson, 46, of Missouri. He said he earned roughly $35,000 with overtime last year, down from about $45,000 five years ago.
“I really can’t afford to not be working, but this is not worth it. I’d rather go work somewhere else or draw unemployment,” said Johnson, a worker at Hostess for 23 years.
Yes, old news. But I came across this today:
In the recent past we noted the somewhat startling reality that “the single mom is better off earning gross income of $29,000 with $57,327 in net income & benefits than to earn gross income of $69,000 with net income and benefits of $57,045.” … the painful reality in America is that: for increasingly more Americans it is now more lucrative – in the form of actual disposable income – to sit, do nothing, and collect various welfare entitlements, than to work. … there is an earnings vacuum of around $40k in which US workers are perfectly ambivalent toward inputting more effort since it does not result in any additional incremental disposable income.
An interesting note is that the graphic comes from the PA Dept. of Public Health. It’s a slide from a whole presentation about welfare’s failure.
I recall a story from a friend of mine who used to run a mechanical company. He had a nice lady working at the office whom he gave a raise. She took her new pay stub and dutifully notified social services. As a result of the modest raise she was going to lose her housing voucher. So she had to go back to work and say, “Thank you very much but can you please take your raise back. I need to keep my housing voucher.”
The system is broken. Very very broken.
November 10, 2012 § Leave a Comment
An incredible complication of stories over at TheBlaze.com.
Here’s a partial list of layoffs announced since the election:
Energizer – laying off 1,500 employees
Exide Technologies - laying off 150 employees
Westinghouse – laid off another 50 employees
Research in Motion Limited – laid off about 200 employees
Lightyear Network Solutions – laid off more than a dozen
Providence Journal - laid off 23 employees
Hawker Beechcraft - laying off 240 employees
Boeing – laying off 30% of executives at Boeing Defense, Space & Security
CVPH Medical Center - laid off 17 employees
US Cellular – laying off 980, 640 in the Chicago area
Momentive Performance Materials - laying off 150
Rocketdyne - laid off about 100
Brake Parts – laying off 75
Vestas Wind Systems – reducing headcount by 3,000
Husqvarna - laying off 600
Center for Hospice New York - laying off 40
Bristol-Meyers - laying of 480
OCE North America – laying off 135
In its statement, UtahAmerican Energy blames the Obama administration for instituting policies that will close down “204 American coal-fired power plants by 2014″ and for drastically reducing the market for coal.
United Blood Services Gulf South region, the non-profit blood service provider for much of south Louisiana and Mississippi, will lay off approximately 10 percent of its workforce. It was a hard decision to make according to Susan Begnaud, Regional Center Director for the Gulf South region.
Insane right? Here’s a partial list of businesses closing announced since the election:
Where’s Chris Matthews on this story? Where the rest of the media on this story?
October 10, 2012 § 1 Comment
A majority of owners of midsized businesses in the Chicago area plan to expand in the next three months, but only a third say they will hire more workers in that time, according to a new survey. …
The most recent poll … found that nearly 60 percent of surveyed businesses planned to expand in the next six months. …At the same time, just 30 percent plan to add staff in the next three months. In the spring survey, 42 percent said they planned to hire soon.
Businesses are terrified of the government. So what do they do? More as slowly as possible. Hire as few as possible. Be as conservative as possible. Because the G is going to come and screw you up real bad at any minute.
Business are terrified of Obamacare. The costs associated with bringing on new people is dizzying. Hire someone today and down the road you may just have to fire them because their health care costs are out of control.
Running a business is hard. Really hard.
Any business that tells you that they”could use “help from the government” is so big that they are fully in bed with the government. Much like GE, or GM. Recall that GE paid no taxes on $14B in income in 2010. The GM fiasco speaks for itself.
The life blood of this country is in the small and medium sized businesses. Right now these businesses are sick and we’re not nurturing them the way we should. But they future is our future.
This country is heading in the wrong direction.
October 10, 2012 § Leave a Comment
More than 1,100 people have collected nearly $2 million in unemployment benefits while they were in county jails or state prisons, including $43,000 that went to a person in the Cook County Jail, a state agency said Tuesday.
Now they may face state or federal criminal fraud charges as well as having to repay what they shouldn’t have taken in the first place, said Greg Rivara, spokesman for the Illinois Department of Employment Security.
In Cook County alone, there were 296 inmates tied to $722,689 in wrongful payments. In Will County, 21 inmates collected $85,159. Lake County was another leader with 20 inmates collecting $84,533, the agency said.
via Chicago Tribune.
WT…?! You couldn’t make this stuff up.
#1. Where are the two wonder-twins of justice in this? Nothing from Lisa Madigan or Anita Alvarez? Why? Where have they been?
#2. Who the hell is running this agency? Jail and prison records are actually a matter of public record. You’re telling me no one ever bothered to cross-check the payouts against another public record?
#3. It kinda makes you wonder how much fraud is really going on in the system. After all, The Machine has their corrupt friends running all these agencies there is really no limit to how much might be missing.
Certainly not last… This is just another fine example as to why any service run by the government is doomed to ultimately doomed to fail. People are incentivized to cheat the system. But government employees are also incentivized to get as many people as possible into the system so they can justify their jobs and get more jobs and thus become more politically powerful. As such, no one is watching the money.
The government that works the least is most often the government that works best.
September 24, 2012 § Leave a Comment
Wal-Mart Stores said on Friday that it plans to give current workers the chance to work more hours and will hire more than 50,000 seasonal employees as it gets ready for the winter holiday season, its busiest time of year.
via Fox Business.
[Insert cheap joke here.]
September 21, 2012 § Leave a Comment
Unemployment across Illinois rose to 9.1 percent in August, the third straight month of increases in the state, the Illinois Department of Employment Security said Thursday. …
Unemployment in July was 8.9 percent. Increases in the unemployment rate in June, July and August followed nine months of slow but steady declines. The federal government said earlier this month that the national unemployment rate dropped from 8.3 percent to 8.1, but the decrease was thought to primarily be driven by people dropping off unemployment rolls because they stopped looking for work.
Not a good sign.
It’s time for Madigan, Rahm, Quinn, and the rest of the cabal to stop lining their own pockets and start balancing budgets and becoming a little more business friendly.
Do anti-business people understand that no businesses = no taxpayers. No taxpayers = no tax revenue. No tax revenue = no government jobs or services?
Government in and of itself creates nothing of value. It’s all done with other people’s money. What about that is so hard to understand?
September 18, 2012 § Leave a Comment
Talking about how the unemployment rate only fell last month because of the number of people that dropped out of the labor force, Leno quipped that the President is “encouraging more Americans to give up looking for work so the numbers will come down a little bit”
Ouch! Video at the link.
September 8, 2012 § Leave a Comment
Remember when we were promised that if we spent $2 billion of money we didn’t have all would be well?
Let’s compare promised to actual:
It’s also important to keep in mind that this chart does not reflect the millions of people who simply are no longer included in the workforce. As of August, only 42% of the U.S. population was working. 42%!!
September 8, 2012 § Leave a Comment
Worst news ever!!
The number of Americans whom the U.S. Department of Labor counted as “not in the civilian labor force” in August hit a record high of 88,921,000. …
In July, there were 155,013,000 in the U.S. civilian labor force. In August that dropped to 154,645,000—meaning that on net 368,000 people simply dropped out of the labor force last month and did not even look for a job.There were also 119,000 fewer Americans employed in August than there were in July. In July, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 142,220,000 Americans working. But, in August, there were only 142,101,000 Americans working.
Despite the fact that fewer Americans were employed in August than July, the unemployment rate ticked down from 8.3 in July to 8.1. That is because so many people dropped out of the labor force and stopped looking for work. The unemployment rate is the percentage of people in the labor force (meaning they had a job or were actively looking for one) who did not have a job.
The Bureau of Labor Statistic also reported that in August the labor force participation rate (the percentage of the people in the civilian non-institutionalized population who either had a job or were actively looking for one) dropped to a 30-year low of 63.5 percent, down from 63.7 percent in July. The last time the labor force participation rate was as low as 63.5 percent was in September 1981.
Think about that. In August the U.S. civilian labor force was 154,645,000 people. The unemployment rate among those people was 8.1%. So of those 154M who could/should be working 12,526,245 were not. These 12.5M are on unemployment. That means that 142,118,755 people are working; hooray for them!!
We are a country of 314,330,000 people. That means that only 42% of the people in this country are working.
Forty-Two Percent of people in this country are working.
Just think about that for a little bit.