Unemployment at a Glance

Trending of the monetary and employment makeup of the US lately has been both disturbing and interesting, but first some articles and figures:

The unemployment rate is currently 9.5% as of February 2011.

A more accurate unemployment rate, the U6 (total unemployed, plus all marginally attached workers, plus total employed part time for economic reasons), is about 16%.

There are now 5 unemployed workers for every 1 job opening.

The unemployment rate of the young, often cited as a reason for unrest, in Egypt is 25% - in the US it's 21% (defined as 16-24 in the US and under 25 in Egypt). If you're a college grad it's more like 11% and if you're over 25 it's 4.5%.

Cutting unemployment benefits is correlated with people looking for work less.

Graduating from college now and not getting a job is detrimental to your long term prospects - that is, we're damaging a whole generation of workers.

And last but not least, the top 400 richest Americans now own more than the bottom 50% of Americans.

I'm not even sure I need to comment further. It should be abundantly clear why firing teachers - which will most likely be young and will further exacerbate the problem, cutting government spending - which will increase that 5 unemployed per job opening number, and/or cutting taxes (on the rich none the less) at this point in time makes no sense. The employed have historically high employment rates while some job postings are even requiring that you're currently employed just to apply for the job. It's as if the unemployed have become a minority group with little power and diminishing resources. Why is this acceptable?