What A Weird Coincidence

As the longest government shutdown ever continues, new applications for jobless benefits have dropped to a low not seen since 1969.

It's as if there were some connection between less intrusive Federal government and more employment. But you know, correlation doesn't equal causation and all that. It's probably nothing.


Assistant Village Idiot said...

At minimum, less government intrusion does not seem to be hurting the economy.

Texan99 said...

A neighbor emailed me today to explain that she felt the pain of federal workers living paycheck to paycheck, wanted to buy them a gift card, and wondered if I knew of anyone in our community who was keeping track of that problem so she could follow up on her generous impulse. I said I didn't but thought this would be a great thing for her to get started. Her immediate response: I wouldn't even know how to start, so never mind.

I'm trying to think what federal workers we have in the immediate vicinity. Postal workers are all who come to mind, unless some FEMA personnel are still hanging around.

I do have a young relative in a northeastern state so hagridden by bipolar disorder that he really can't work more than sporadically. He's on food stamps, which apparently are funded in large part with federal funds, because in a week or two they're going to be cut back sharply if the shutdown hasn't been resolved. Why, I wonder, can't the state take care of its own food stamps without federal support? But I know his family plans to step up their financial support for the duration, and that they can ill afford it, so I'm going to start contributing as well. This is the only situation I've been aware of in which the shutdown is pinching someone who has few realistic alternatives.

Grim said...

We might start to see some economic distortion if the air traffic controller 'sickout' (i.e., illegal strike) lasts a while. I wonder if Trump will try to do what Reagan did? I also wonder if it's still possible to do that?

Grim said...

Well, apparently the answer to at least one of those two questions was, "No."

ColoComment said...

I hope I don't come across as unfeeling (well, ok, maybe a little bit), but I'm surprised at the number of fed employees (dug up by the press, so maybe not representative), who appear to be one paycheck away from financial disaster.
Haven't these people ever heard of Dave Ramsey? :-)
3-6 months (or more) of pared-back living expenses stashed away in a liquid account.... Oh, and live beneath your means. Is it so unreasonable to expect some personal responsibility?
These people have either made no plans for the unexpected, unforeseen, adverse financial event, have overbought their home or rental, live extravagantly for their income, or some other category of financial irresponsibility.
Do they really think that bad times never come? Even to "good" people?

douglas said...

Not only that, but not paying your cell phone bill, or power bill, or cable bill for a month is nothing- $5 charge in most cases, and an extra month to pay (two months is a problem). Mortgage would be the one I'd worry about, but you'd think a bank would be able to work with you when it knows you're going to get paid, it's only a question of when.
Beyond that, if you can pay for food and gas, you should be ok, even without excess liquidity. I mean, put it on a credit card- that's a month right there, no charge. Minor charge for carrying it for a second month until you get your back pay.

Manufactured outrage.