The White House may call it a recovery, and the media may mostly chirp along, but that doesn’t appear to be the case for many Americans still victim to ObamaNomics. The “number and share of people out of work for more than six months, the so-called long-term unemployed, remain at historically high levels.”
One has to wonder how hiring trends might be different were businesses not having to contend with the new financial burdens imposed by Obamacare, for example. And certainly any influx of cheap labor through a lax immigration policy can’t help in this situation.
Of the 3 million long-term jobless today, about one-third have been unemployed for more than two years, Labor Department data show. A small minority — roughly 100,000 Americans like Perry — have been actively looking for at least five years.
They might be called the super long-term unemployed. While others have quit looking, taken early retirement or entered disability rolls, these workers have pressed on year after year despite the increasingly long odds of finding a new job.
Don’t look for the media or Washington to connect those dots any time soon.
Although relatively few workers are in this boat, experts call the problem deeply worrisome.
“Just because you aren’t long-term unemployed doesn’t mean you won’t be tomorrow,” said Justin Wolfers, a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics.
Having large numbers of people drawing food stamps, Medicaid and other public programs instead of being productive, taxpaying workers hurts the overall economy, he said. “The budgetary impact is quite large.”